I had stopped crying hours ago, but though I had run out of tears the shaking had not ceased. Memories of Rachel haunted my mind. It had been her that had first suggested I start painting.
"Why don't you try painting, Cobalt," she had said to me one day after I had had another outburst on my younger brother. "It might help to calm you,"
"How can painting calm me?" I had asked her, "Don't be so silly, Rache."
She shrugged, "I don't know, art has always helped me when I'm upset, maybe it will help you too."
"The only thing that can help me is getting out of this house. They probably wouldn't even miss me, there's enought boys in this house to fill in the gap."
I had listened to her of course. Though she was a year younger than me she had always been someone I respected.
"Cobalt, Cobalt!" I was fifteen again my easil set before me, I smiled at the almost complete picture of the beautiful pond, wildflowers surrounding it. By the next day the pond would match the painting. Rachel's voice called out to me again, "Answer back Cobalt, where are you?"
I smiled as my sister's voice came closer, "I'm over here, Rache."
A moment later she was at my side and exclaiming over my painting, "Oh it's so beautiful, Cobalt." My sister was the only one who knew of my power of my painting, we had discovered it together and together had learned its extent. She was my best friend.
The scene faded from my mind and another came memory came to mind unbidden.
"Why do you have to be so annoying." I shouted at one of my four younger brother. "Why can't you just leave my stuff alone." I grabbed him by the shoulders screaming in his face.
"Cobalt Blue." my mother rushed into the room and pulled my brother from my grasp, "what do you think you're doing?" my brother was crying now and she kneeled down next to him and wiped away his tears with her hand.
She sent him out of the room and then turned to me angrily, "What is wrong with you, Cobalt, why can't you just get along with your brothers."
"Why do you always have to defend him?" I shot back.
"He's my son."
"So am I,"
"You're sixteen years old, Cobalt, your brothers only nine. Try acting a little more your age."
I was hurt, once again I had been brushed off like I had been for years. For years I had just been one of five, the oldest one who could handle himself, while the others had been too young, too sick, too rebellious.
I ran to my room ignoring my mothers call to come back. I slammed my door behind me and knocked a stack of books off my desk. I noticed the paintings of my family hanging on my wall. I ran to the wall and pulled the paintings of my mother off the wall and threw it at my bed. I reached for the picture of my brother and tore them off the wall as well. Mindlessly I began tearing them and tossing them across the room. I didn't stop until I heard one hit the wall.
The memory faded when a hand touched my shoulder, suddenly I was on the island again, I turned toward the person behind me, "Rachel, is that you?" I turned to see that it was only Carmine. "Oh, it's only you."
Carmine sat down at my side looking up at the fading sun. "How did she die?"
Her question surprised me but I didn't enquire about it, "It was my fault," I managed, "I was angry and wasn't thinking. I threw painting of across across the room and it shattered when it hit the wall..."
She nodded realizing the significance of a painting in my hands and waited for me to continue. "We found her body in the backyard later that night. No sign of struggle, no broken bones, no bruises. The police didn't know how she had died, but I did. I knew that it was my fault."
Carmine placed her hand on my shoulder, "I understand your pain," I looked at her curiously, but I knew she was telling the truth. She could feel my pain, I could see it in her eyes.
"How did you find me out here?" I ventured to ask. I had mourned long enough and was ready to change the subject away from my pain.
She pulled her hand away and looked back in the direction of the nearly disappeared sun. "I followed the trail," she said slowly.
"What trail?" I looked behind me to see what she might be talking about but she only shook her head.
"It wasn't that kind of a trail, it was...it was like I could feel your pain and I just followed it here."
I smiled deciding not to say anything about what I had come to suspect. I stood to my feet realizing that we had probably left the teenagers to run rampant long enough. "We should probably get to bed. It's been a long day and who know's what tomorrow might hold."
She nodded and together we went back to the house.