Always and Forever Tributes American Diabetes Association

German Reveley


It was nearer forty minutes, but at least the view was nice. At last I heard crashing and banging from outside; I assumed from the huge room I had woken up in the night before. I waited another fifteen minutes with bated breath when I heard her voice from the speakers. "Mmm, nice coffee and first cig of the day. Feel better now -- fuck, that case of yours was a weight! How you doing in there?"
I assumed she'd hear me wherever I was, so I spoke quietly. "I've felt better but thanks for asking. What was that stuff?"

"Oh, just some nasty chemicals I came by fortuitously a while ago. Always carry them in case I need a quick get-out, but last night I found a proper use for them. Came in very handy. I'm going to come in and talk in a moment, but I need you to be restrained again - just in case you try anything, you understand. Once I got my life sorted out, I decided I wasn't going to be bullied again so I took Taekwondo lessons. I'm bloody good at it and I could probably put you through the window before you could blink - but I ain't taking the risk. So be a darling and dig down to the left of the mattress. There's a padlock on a chain under there about a third of the way down. Just close it over one of the rings on your left wristband, make yourself comfy and I'll be in to see you in two shakes of a lamb's tail!"

It was pointless to argue. I found the padlock and the chain was long enough to allow me free movement around the bed. Something told me I was going to have to get used to being in that situation. I lay down and waited a moment. I heard a key in the lock and the outer door opened. Bree came in carrying a wooden chair in one hand, a coffee mug in the other, a cigarette dangling from her lips. She set the chair down backwards at the foot of the bed and sat down on it, legs wide apart. She was wearing a white silky robe and she must have showered on her return with my gear. She pulled on her cig and took a long sip of coffee. The smell made my stomach lurch, but this time for the right reasons.

She smiled and looked at me. "Same rules, Chloe. Speak when I tell you to, ok? Who is in control here?

I looked at her levelly. "You are Bree."

"Good start. Sorry to smoke in your room, but it's really your fault. I just wanted to be like you and the others back then. Be one of your gang. Saw you doing it and started myself. Looks like you managed to quit, but I wasn't that lucky. Add that to the abuse and bullying and see the lasting damage you've done to me?"

Assuming it was my turn to speak, I sighed. "Sorry, Sab... Bree. I hated it, but I wanted to be part of it all too. I did it to fit in with them and I wish I had never-"
She shook her head and ran her fingers across her lips. "Zip it, Chloe. If you try to apologise once more, I'll stub this fucking thing out on your hand. Got it?"

I nodded in acquiescence. "Got it."

"Good girl. I hated it too, but I thought it might make a difference. But the ugly, spotty, half-blind kid with buck teeth was never going to make your little toxic foursome, was she? By the time I realised that, I was hooked and I was stubbing them out on my arms and carving patterns with a rusty knife because I hated myself and it hurt a damned side less than being called 'The Teenage Bitch' or 'Join the Dots'."

She took a final drag and moved towards the bed and held the stub over my left foot. Though panicking inside, I held her gaze. "Do it, Bree. I deserve it."

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