Just before the garage collapsed on my ticket to escape, an idea hit me and I don't know why I hadn't thought of it before.
Because as much as I sickly enjoyed not having to hide just how pissed off I was, the screaming and fighting wasn't actually getting us anywhere.
The combination of seeing the wreck of a car left in the space that was supposed to be a garage and this idea took the uncontrollable anger out of me. I'm still pissed, but not to the point of hitting Gemme.
Thing is, I'm not sure Gemme will like this idea at all.
Basically, when I was prodding her brain, I realised if I look hard enough, I can see every cell. I have the potential to manipulate each cell in a body individually. Which interested me. Because memories aren't just pictures in your mind. They're cells. When you don't think about something for a long time, you forget it because that memory cell has died.
So when I remembered this, I realised that Gemme and Ike aren't the only ones that can remove memories. And this one involves permanently removing them. No passing them onto other people. No fucking around like before. Of course, I don't know how I'd test that idea; I can't test it on myself, because I'd forget what I was supposed to be forgetting, obviously, and I don't want to test it on Gemme, in case I completely destroy her brain and turn her into a vegetable.
Despite everything, I still love her, and I want things to just heal over, but I know that all the time things are going around in the back of my head, the wound'll never heal. Just like what happened with Emily. She was dead, but I couldn't let myself move on - a mix of self loathing for what I did and total disgust at what she did. And fear that it would happen again.
And oh look, it happened again.
And I can just see myself going back to how I was a year ago, back into the drugs, back to being the worst person to know in the world.
I wonder if Benny will be my guinea pig. He might not get a choice.
"I'm gonna go heal Benny again," I mutter, standing up again.
"Okay, I'll... stay here," Gemme says, not getting up. I nod and walk back into the house. I suddenly feel like a kicked puppy. I know what I did wrong, and I regret it, but it's easier to skulk away than to say sorry.
I hate the way my temper just snaps.
As I walk through the house, I wonder if I can make memory cells inactive, rather than killing them altogether. I find Benny in the kitchen sat at the table, with his hand in a bowl of ice. He looks up at me as I come in and scowls.
The scowl drop as I make his hand heal.
"Thanks," he mumbles, pushing the bowl of ice away. I sit down opposite him and he rests his chin on a loosely curled fist, staring at me. "You lost it pretty bad out there," he says after a moment, "not seen you like that for a while." I nod. I don't want to think about it, let alone talk about it.
"I know. I came in here to tell you something, not remember what a fuck up I was. Am. Whatever." He looks at me questioningly, prompting me to go on. "Anyways, you know Gemme can take away memories, right?" he nods and I pretty much just outline my idea. I want to erase the whole cheating thing from my mind. But not just mine, from his and Gemme's minds too. She wanted to go back in time? Well, it's hardly a time machine, but it's the best I have.
"And you want me to be your guinea pig for this?" he asks, disbelief edging his voice. I mumble an "mhm" and he arches an eyebrow slightly. "Alright then," he shrugs. "Not like I have anything to lose from it, really." And here I was, expecting some kinda fight. I half smile.
"You don't even trust me enough to look after your weed, but you'll let me kill part of your brain?"
"S'only a tiny bit after all," he says laughing. "I just want you guys to get on again." I guess... Love each other like a brother and sister, huh? Tell me, what's incest like?
I push the thought away, trying to keep the bitterness out of my mind.
"Ready, then?" I ask and he nods slightly, a flicker of uncertainty in his eyes. I ignore it and push into his brain. I've healed the guy so many times after our fights that I know his insides like I know Cameron. Never been in his brain though. "Think about when we first met." I tell him hoping that the active cells will stand out in this big grey lump of goo. I close my eyes, concentrating on seeing his brain as individual cells.
I wander around until I find his memory and the active cells almost draw me in. I have a look around, trying to see if I can actually see the memories. I reach out and touch the cluster of cells and instantly, I see my face, contorted with rage and drugs as I threaten him. Is that really what I look like when I'm high? Urgh. I pull myself away from those cells and set about making them inactive.
"Can you remember how we first met?" I ask, pulling out of his head. He thinks for a moment, really looking for the memory and though it takes him a couple of moments, he nods.
"Yeah, I dropped my weed and went to pick it up and then you attacked me, saying it was yours."
"Crap," I mutter, going back inside of his head. We go on like this for what feels like an age.
When I next look out of the window, it's getting dark. I hear the front door close and Gemme's footsteps as she comes in. I focus back on Benny real quick and pretend I haven't seen her come back in. She stands, looking at the two of us silently as we concentrate again and shrugs slightly, moving past us to get a drink. Benny opens his mouth to say something to Gemme and I prod his brain sharply, making him close his mouth.
Gemme sighs, taking her glass of water upstairs without a word to either of us. My concentration had been failing anyways, but now it was totally gone. I get out of his head again and put my head down on the table, hungry and tired and... just urgh.
"Well that was a bit of a failure," Benny mutters after a moment, "I can still remember how I met you and we've been sitting here like this for ages."
"You don't say," I grumble into the table, not looking up.
"I do fucking say. You're not gentle, either, are you?" I look up this time.
"Shut up. I'm trying to find a way to stop us all fighting, so don't piss me off even more, yeah?" at least I'm trying, right?
"Maybe this just isn't the right way to be trying to move on, Cancer," he mumbles, getting up. "I'm going to bed. I'll see you tomorrow."
"Not a word to Gemme about this," I warn and he nods, disappearing off upstairs, too. I sit there a while longer, before getting up and finding something to eat.
I eat the first thing I find, not even paying attention to what it is as I wonder how I'm supposed to get over this without erasing the memories.
Or maybe I just need to try harder with that?
I dunno. I don't know anything anymore, just that I want this to go away so me and Gemme can go back to how we were.
The memory of us together at the beach flashes in my mind again and I sigh unhappily, walking to the bottom of the stairs, quietly debating if Gemme would want me anywhere near her after earlier.
Another memory flashes in my head, one from a few moments earlier. "I want you more than anything." And I know that Gemme showed me that. I bite on my lower lip for a second before going upstairs.
I go into the bedroom and see Gemme on the bed, dressed for sleep though she isn't under the covers yet. Her glass of water is on the side cabinet, untouched. She doesn't look at me, her eyes on the ceiling.
"I'm, uh..." I cough, pretending my throat needs clearing as I lean back on the door, closing it. I stay there leaning back on it as I try to get my words out. "I'm sorry. About losing it earlier," I manage to choke them out, looking at the ceiling too as I say them. C'mon. It's hard enough saying them at all, let alone walking over and looking her in the eye to say them.
She nods, not taking her gaze from the ceiling. "No need, we were both as bad as each other." She murmurs. Well this is awkward. I open the door again.
"Yeah. I'll go sleep on the sofa. Don't wanna make it more awkward or anything." I mutter, this time talking to the floor as I stare at my feet, hovering in the doorway. She shakes her head, beckoning me over. I hesitate for a second before moving over to the bed, sitting on my side cross-legged so I'm facing her. She sits up, facing me and opens her arms.
"Please..." she whispers. I half nod, pulling her into a hug.