"I hear you need scales," I approached Lilly after the debacle, she looks at me strangely but nods all the same, "and a place to crash?" I ask.
"Yes, why do you have somewhere I can stay?" she looks pleadingly and goes to grab my hand. I back away. She sees hurt on my face and apologises.
"Don't worry about it," I try to laugh but it comes out mechanical, "I'm pretty much homeless too, I ran away from my parents, I can't touch people, I can kill them, anyways, I could sneak you back if you'd like?" I phrase it into a question, she contemplates it.
"It could be dangerous then?" she asks back. I nod, "then I'll do it," she winks at me and I laugh, properly this time.
"Hey, you got a place to stay?" Ike pipes up, he looks at me meaningfully. Lilly nods, "can I come too?"
"Ooh yes, please," Lilly pleads. For some reason, I felt a pang at this, but I nodded.
We set off immediately, it was starting to get dark but it wasn't far from my home.
As I came to the street, Ike pulled us back, "it's the police," dread addles my veins, pulsing through me, I wanted to run away again, "no it's not that," Ike says, "they reported you missing, your parents."
"Can we still get in there?" Lilly looks to Ike, I felt powerless, meaningless in this little trio.
"Of course we can," Ike smiles, "we could walk in there right in front of them and I could make sure they don't see us," he laughs and Lilly gives him a huge smile. Another twinge.
So we walk in the open street, practically invisible with Ike telling anyone nearby we weren't there, it felt almost liberating.
We opened the door to the house, I hear the police talk to my parents, asking if anything was wrong, they were crying. We continue to the basement, open the door to the intense darkness and walk inside.
"Man this place smells weird, mould and wine, hey, you got wine in your cellar?" Ike looks eagerly inside. I nod.
"I need to get bedding," I explain as I turn to go, I know I'll be safe, that Ike can hold the illusion.
I move qickly and silently up the stairs and to my room, it's a mess, the whole place ransacked in search of any clue as to my whereabouts. I didn't even leave a message. In a drawer I find some sheets and quilts. I bundle them up and return to the basement.
I could see quite well in the dark, Ike sat cuddling Lilly in the cold, I ignored them, feeling slightly miserable and got the sheets ready.
"It's not perfect but I suppose it'll do," I mumble.
They each get into their 'beds' and try to sleep.
How could I sleep? the hard floor and cold I could barely feel, I felt awful from everything that had happened.
I hear Ike snore.
Lilly stands in front of me, sits down, shares a look of empathy.
"You're feelings are powerful, I had little trouble seeing how you felt. You hurt inside, you ran away from your parents to protect them yet you feel guilty, you killed a man which you feel terrible about, you feel completely cut off from the world, it's horrible, you cannot touch anyone, anyone you... love you could never be with because you would hurt them," she hit the nail on the head, but there was more, could I talk to her?
No the child said.
"There's more," I ignore it.
She looks sadly, I know she cannot share my feelings, "touch my hand," she holds it out, I look at her incredulously but she persists, "touch it!" she orders.