Name: Beatrice Tanner (alias: Sixpence)
Year of Death: 2014
Total Reaps: 0
Place of Residence: None
Day Job: ???
"Are we going back to your..." I hesitated, trying to think of a word that wasn't insulting, "house?"
Out of all the places I wanted to go right now, that mouldy craphole that Rouge called a house was right down at the bottom. I'd rather live in a dumpster. Seriously. It'd be marginally more pleasant.
"You can go wherever you want, little lady," Rouge replied. "But so long as you stay away from my Clyde you're welcome chez moi."
That caught my interest, despite the confusing French (I'd studied German instead of French, and even that not for several years.)
"Who's Clyde?" I asked, avoiding the temptation to tack 'your boyfriend?' onto the end.
"That's a story for another time. Right now, I gotta clean myself up and head to work."
Well, if he's some boyfriend of yours, you don't need to worry about me at all.
"Work?" I asked, only just realising I sounded like an idiot.
Rouge looked at me like she thought the same.
"Yep, work. Bein' dead doesn't exempt you from needing money, y'know."
"Um... What's your job?" I asked quietly, hoping that sounded more intelligent.
"How's about you keep to yourself for now, eh?"
I cringed a little. I didn't realise I was being nosy...
"Just 'cause you're my apprentice, don't think I'm going to be nice to you. I had to learn this all myself, and damned if I'm giving you an easy ride for it."
"Uh... Can I ask a question?
She sighed. "Guess so."
"Can reapers... Can I speak to people?"
Rouge smiled slightly, like she knew what I wanted to do and thought it was overly sentimental.
"Most people, yeah."
"Then, I'm going to go tell my... family what's happened." I decided not to say 'my girlfriend'. I didn't want to trust Rouge with that just yet, in case she didn't already know.
"Have fun with that," she said, halfway to the bathroom while I'd been distracted. "I'm taking a shower. You come back after I'm gone, you won't be able to get in."
"Yeah, like I'd come back willingly," I muttered, leaving as fast as I could.
I shut the door behind me and instinctively brushed my clothes down. I didn't understand how Rouge put up with such a disgusting place. Maybe being dead a long time made you not care about that sort of thing. Maybe I was oversensitive. Either way, I was going to beg Jessica to let me stay with her for as long as I could. I was sure she'd be okay with it.
I realised I had no idea where I was. I read the street name - Stepford Way - but was no more enlightened for it. I figured I could just wander around until I found somewhere I recognised.
After half an hour, I was even more lost. All I found was a bunch of houses that all looked the same, a post box and-
I stopped at the sight of a lamppost surrounded with flowers.
There was a short blonde girl with light skin in front of it, holding a bunch of roses.
I knew where I was. I knew the girl.
"Jessica!" I shouted, running over, being very, very wary of the road.
Jessica turned, looking confused and surprised.
Well, I guess anyone would if they saw someone they thought was dead apparently alive.
"Y-yes?" she said, slowly. Her voice was shaky, and I suddenly noticed that her eyes looked red and puffy.
"Oh, Jessie, I'm so glad I found you! I don't really know this part of the city well-"
"Who are you?"
The sudden question cut me short.
Well, it was sensible of her to assume I was someone else rather than myself.
"Jessie, it's me, and I really love strawberries oh my god!"
Wait, that wasn't what I said! I said "it's Beatrice, and I am dead but it's okay because I'm still here."
But instead, that stupid sentence cane out of my mouth.
"No, I meant, coffee and lemon juice tastes really bad!"
Agh, not again! Just say what I'm saying! I just want to talk to...
Who is this again?
I stared at the girl in front of me. She was staring at the ground and crying.
Hey... Who is she?
No... I know this. I do know her. I have to know her! Otherwise I wouldn't be speaking to her!
... But it's no use. I can't remember.
That's stupid! I knew who she was just a minute ago!
I've forgotten, though.
"Hey," I said, trying to pat her shoulder for, I don't know, comfort or something, "I'm really sorry, but-"
And she punched me in the face.
I staggered back. /Ouch/, that really, really hurt!
"I don't know who you are, just leave me alone!" she yelled, sobbing, and ran away.
I looked at the flowers that marked where I'd died. Amongst the roses left by that girl was a photo of the two of us, smiling.
Whoever she was, I think she broke my nose...