It was about eight by the time we walked out of the cinema, it was starting to get dark, so we decided to cut across the skateboard park to get to the bus stop faster. Also Amy wanted to walk through in case Sam and Ben were there.
Amy had been flirting with Sam for ages and she herself had quite a crush on Ben, though she wasn't anywhere near as forward about it as Amy was. So, arm in arm we walked giggling down the way to the entrance to the park.
The floodlights in the park came on at about six, so that the die hard skaters could stay out for a few hours after the little kids had been called home by their mothers. The bright lights illuminated the ramps and walkways and the clusters of benches and tables strewn around the place.
There was no sign of Sam and Ben though, the park was mostly empty with just two skaters and a guy on a bike over by the biggest ramp. The boys were being watched by a group of girls who looked to be about the same age as us though I didn't recognise them from college or anything.
The sky had gotten darker on our short walk to the park, clouds heavy with rain filled the sky, so disappointed that we hadn't run into the boys we turned to walk out of the park and go home. We heard laughter and voices as we made our way across the park, on turning we saw that the two skaters and their friend were making their way to the gate we had come in through, and the girls had already started walking off in another direction.
It seemed we weren't the only ones who wanted to get home before the rain started.
We were almost to the road when we heard more laughter behind us, this time it was the girls we had seen earlier, they were now running towards us, seemingly as intent on catching the next bus as we were. As there were more of them, five in total, I stepped out of their way slightly so they could pass on between myself and Amy.
Just before they would pass though they stopped running. I thought at first that maybe one of us had dropped something and the girls had seen this and had picked it up and run after us to return it.
The next few moments seemed like they had been torn from my reality, when I would first try to recall events afterwards I would become confused over details and the order things happened. I guess thats why Amy's mum has trouble looking me in the eye, she blames me for what happened and late at night when I cant sleep I agree with her.
What happened happened because I was trying to protect my friend, but I dont think she will ever find it in her heart to accept that.
"We saw you before," one of the girls called out to us as she stepped forward "we saw you looking at those boys back there, does one of you fancy one of them?"
Amy laughed as she pulled me by the arm towards the gate and away from the girls.
"don't be walking away from us bitches, no one eyes up my boyfriend and gets away with it"
I turned round again to see the girl who had spoken lunge towards us. She lashed out at Amy and before I knew it my friend was lying on the floor, with one girl on her, tearing at her hair and punching her in the face, the others were taking their turns at aiming punches and kicks at Amy's head and in a moment I knew I had to do something to help or these girls might seriously hurt my friend.
We were close to the road, but there was no guarantee that anyone would be nearby or even willing to help, so I looked around all the while with tears streaming down my own face. None of the girls were paying any attention to me, so when I spotted the half brick laying on the ground at the edge of a bush, I picked it up and turned back towards the scene unfolding before me.
I must have screamed as I ran, arms raised above my head, one girl turned, then another and they moved towards me as I advanced in a now deadly rage. In another second the girls were on me, tripping me and forcing me to the ground next to Amy.
As I fell, arms outstretched, I still had the brick curled in my hand, it must have caught Amy across the head the coroner had said, I would never know because I took quite the kicking to my own head that day and I remembered nothing after being tackled to the ground.
I wasn't invited to the funeral service, as I say, Amy's mum can't bear to look at the girl who dealt the killing blow that crushed her daughters skull.