Chapter 9:

Through Open Lids

Who am I?

Kara was back at home. After putting it off for weeks, she crawled under her desk, where the cardboard-box with letters waited for her to delve into the pool of secrets they kept hidden in their envelopes.Bookmark here

Each one had a date assigned to it, ranging from about two years ago to six months prior... meaning before her accident.Bookmark here

Kara gulped.Bookmark here

Her hands trembled, but she had time.Bookmark here

She looked for the earliest one and opened it.Bookmark here

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Dear Kara,Bookmark here

how should I start?Bookmark here

I suppose you know what's happening to me, or maybe time closed these wounds and you randomly stumbled upon this letter.Bookmark here

If so, I'm sorry.Bookmark here

I didn't want to remind you of the first time I had been bullied.Bookmark here

You see, I scored the highest of my class and they...Bookmark here

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"Did I write all of these to myself?" Kara wondered, skipping through the next few letters. Dear Kara... Dear Kara... Dear Kara... Every one of them started the same. They all talked about various acts of harassment, bullying, and joking at her disposal. "... but I am so glad to have my sister at my side. I never tell her anything, but just being with her... seeing her in our secret cove... it helps me. Make sure to stay close to her. She's the best thing we have, Kara. Sincerely yours, Kara... heh, even then, you were an angel, Nia..."Bookmark here

She put it back and skimmed over a few others.Bookmark here

One that was written about four months after the first one caught her eyes. The date was scribbled in messy numbers, totally unlike the careful strokes the previous ones displayed.Bookmark here

Curious, she picked it up.Bookmark here

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Dear Kara...Bookmark here

Nia was accepted at the university she wanted to attend... she... my sister will be gone. My only support in this world, she will be gone!Bookmark here

How can I deal with this?Bookmark here

If I told her what was going on, I'm sure she would stop, but I can't do that, either! I can't be protected by her all the time...Bookmark here

I must grow.Bookmark here

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"Grow..." Kara repeated the word out loud, chewing on it like gum. "Instead, what did I go and do? Lose my damn memory... let's see..."Bookmark here

Kara ignored the rest of the letters and picked up the one with the latest date. The envelope was an ominous black, the ink a bloody red.Bookmark here

A shiver ran down Kara's spine as she opened it.Bookmark here

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Dear Kara...Bookmark here

Bonnie called me to the roof today. She never does that. I'm scared.Bookmark here

The roof... will they throw me down? They couldn't... they wouldn't... the truth is, I'm not so sure. Ever since Nia left, it got worse. I tried to be like her, act like they don't concern me... my parents don't talk to me anymore.Bookmark here

I don't allow them to.Bookmark here

When they knock on my door, I tell them to go away. I go to Nia's room from our cove and close both our doors so that they can't come inside.Bookmark here

When I'm there, I want to be alone.Bookmark here

I couldn't stand telling them everything, so I leave the door open. I hope that one day, they'll come home before me and just become curious when they see my 'hidden secrets' in this cardboard box.Bookmark here

What will they do once they find out?Bookmark here

I couldn't tell you.Bookmark here

The thought amused me, but it won't come true.Bookmark here

As much as I love my parents, they don't care enough to search my room. How would I react in this case?Bookmark here

I guess I wouldn't search their rooms, either.Bookmark here

I'd think there has to be a reason for my daughter's behavior, so I'd let her be. Maybe my methods are worthless, after all...Bookmark here

I wonder what happened to Nia...Bookmark here

I wonder what will happen to me.Bookmark here

I'm scared, Kara.Bookmark here

Help me...Bookmark here

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She closed her eyes.Bookmark here

A breeze ruffled her long hair, making some of it stick to her face. It was chilly, not yet spring. The winter firmly held on to the thermometer, holding the temperature low.Bookmark here

"You sure you don't want to look?" Bonnie asked mockingly. Kara nodded. "Alright... here goes!"Bookmark here

"Ouch!"Bookmark here

A sharp pain shot through her body from her hand. She felt the blood trail down her hand, dropping to the floor.Bookmark here

"And again, must make this look genuine."Bookmark here

"Uuuu...."Bookmark here

"Don't moan too loudly, we wouldn't want anyone hearing you wince," she commanded, driving the needle into her hand, again.Bookmark here

Today's prank apparently involved a lot of pins.Bookmark here

"Hey, she's bleeding," Ludwig timidly put in from the sidelines.Bookmark here

"And what if she is?" Bonnie barked back. "Oh, did you mean to say that she should get some blood on the pins? That's a genius idea, Ludwig!"Bookmark here

"That's not what I meant..."Bookmark here

"Stop it," Adrian said.Bookmark here

"What is your deal, it's just a few stitches," Bonnie said.Bookmark here

"Lunch break is almost over, idiot," he shot back. "We must hurry."Bookmark here

Kara dared to open her eyes again.Bookmark here

Bonnie was scowling at her watch as if it would change anything. She clicked her tongue and grabbed Kara by the sleeve.Bookmark here

"Listen, go wash your hands and sit down like the innocent thing you are. These trolls will handle the rest," she said, pointing at Adrian and Ludwig.Bookmark here

"..."Bookmark here

It was just another day in the life of Kara Jakobson...Bookmark here

She got dizzy just thinking of how pathetic she was.Bookmark here

Kara Jakobson, the pussy of Hazel High.Bookmark here

"Can't you go any faster?" Bonnie inquired.Bookmark here

"That's quite enough," Adrian said, more forceful. He spread his arms between Kara and Bonnie. "You make yourself sound like a psycho."Bookmark here

"Oh, are you taking her side, now, Adrian?" she said, pulling him down by his collar. He started wobbling as she demonstrated her power over him by making him lose his balance in every direction. "Got some heart-eyes, don't you?"Bookmark here

"You don't make any sense," he said.Bookmark here

"Neither do you," Bonnie said, shoving him away... directly into Kara. "Oh, no-"Bookmark here

Kara heard a loud sound like a bell, only way duller as her vision spun in violent circles. Her whole body was enveloped with pain, and her lids closed with heavy thuds.Bookmark here

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It all came back to her.Bookmark here

She remembered.Bookmark here

That's what happened...Bookmark here

Her hands lost their strength and the letter fell to the ground, on a heap with the other ones... except one.Bookmark here

She looked at it with empty curiosity.Bookmark here

This one was wrinkled and clad in a cutesy-pink envelope, totally unlike the rest of them. There wasn't even a date on it.Bookmark here

It felt very important, like a dear friend.Bookmark here

Kara narrowed her eyes as she tossed it back into the cardboard box. She buried it under the rest of her letters and closed the lid.Bookmark here

She dragged her cupboard back to where it was, clocking the entrance to the sisters' cove and fell into bed.Bookmark here

When summer ended, Nia went back to university, and Kara started her last year of high school alone.Bookmark here

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...Bookmark here

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Dear Nia,Bookmark here

by the time you will read this, I hope you'll have arrived. If you do read this before, then what are you doing? I plan to hide this in the pocket of your miniskirt, and you never wear that!Bookmark here

I think it's time I told you why the school was so hard on me.Bookmark here

My friends... they aren't really my friends.Bookmark here

It feels more like a handler-and-tool kind of relationship if you know what I mean. Like in chess, where they are the player and I'm the pawn.Bookmark here

Something like that.Bookmark here

I kept holding out because of you... frankly, I never thought I'd have to do this without you. You were always around, hoping to get a place in the university of your dreams, and you finally got it.Bookmark here

I'm a terrible sister.Bookmark here

On the outside, I'm smiling with the rest of them, but on the inside, I want to scream at you to stay, to indulge in me for all eternity.Bookmark here

It's a very selfish thing to do...Bookmark here

The teachers sympathize with me, and the principal believes me. I have received many entries into my student-file, but he promised to erase all of them. I never told Principal Raoul the truth, but he still knows.Bookmark here

The adults at school... they protect me.Bookmark here

My parents at home indulge me.Bookmark here

You in our cove... you saved me.Bookmark here

I can't tell you what exactly happened. I'm sorry, that would be too painful. All I want to tell you is that you can rest assured.Bookmark here

Your sister won't stay the little girl forever.Bookmark here

I'm working towards becoming a strong girl like you.Bookmark here

I'll deal with these people, and I'll show them that I won't be deterred!Bookmark here

Thank you for everything, Nia. I love you, and I always will. This won't stop, even if you're far away, studying towards your dream.Bookmark here

I hope to see you soon, or better yet, when you achieved your dream...Bookmark here

... and I have found mine.Bookmark here

Love, Kara.Bookmark here

Who am I?

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