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I stood silently in the doorway and I looked at her. We were once so happy and carefree, but now it's so different. Every time we got close to each other, something would happen to wreck it all. Was it worth going through this pain over and over again? I was wrestling with so many emotions, including the romantic ones I had for her.

I remembered something. I reached into my right chest pocket and pulled out the slightly used picture of Mary-Kate and I before I left for the war. I looked at her smile and I felt a little smile appearing on my face. I quickly stopped smiling cause I was mad at her right now.

I handed it to Mary-Kate and I saw the sincerity in her eyes and maybe a little fear. I walked over to her and I held her in my arms. "It's ok. I forgive you." I said softly.

She threw her arms around me and we hugged for ages.


"Are we done having fun yet?" I asked Marc-Andre annoyed. I looked over to him and saw him looking out the window. I wonder what he's thinking.

He pointedly ignored me. Just then Brett and Mary-Kate entered the room smiling. Very different from their appearance a few minutes earlier.

Mary-Kate sat down on the couch next to me and gave me a hug. "How are you doing?" she asked in a concerned voice.

"Fine" I said shrugging away from her "stop worrying about me!"

"You don't look fine." She said again in her concerned tone of voice.

"I think I know when I'm fine, Mary-Kate." I said, irritated.

"Then how come you never smile anymore?" She asked.

"Because I was dragged around town all day by Marc-Andre." I explained.

"He's only trying to help you, Ashley." I heard Brett say.

"You're the one who needs help, Brett!" I said, getting angry now. "Every few seconds whenever you make Mary-Kate happy, you go out of your way to make her angry again!"

Brett's face started going red and I cowered a little.

"That was SO mean!" Mary-Kate yelled.

"I only have one thing to say to you, Ashley." Brett said, with restraint.

"What?" I asked softly, watching what I was saying.

"Matt." He said.

"What?" I asked.

"I find it strange that you lost your boyfriend, whom you've gone out with for a long time, and haven't mourned for him except when you just found out." Brett said. "Do you miss him at all? Or are you trying to forget about him?"

I was doing my best to hold back tears but they were getting really close to falling. Man! I wish this apartment had seperate rooms. Right about now I'd love to run into mine and slam the door.

"Ummm... maybe you two should leave us alone for a sister to sister talk." Mary-Kate suggested.

Brett nodded. He went over to where Marc-Andre was standing and they both walked out the door. I was glad Brett was gone. Why was he always so mean to everyone.


"Ashley" I started. "You can't bury this"

"Sure I can" she said getting up.

I grabbed the belt loop of her jeans and pulled her back till she was sitting next to me again

"NO You can't!"

"Sure I can," She said. "Just watch me." She got up to leave again.

I pulled her again by her belt loop and sat her down beside me.

"No, you can't!" I said.

"STOP IT!" She yelled. "I can do what I want! You're not my mother!"

"No! But I'm your sister!"

She folded her arms and looked away.

"Ashley, you're in denial..." I started explaining.

"No I'm not!" She quickly said.

I gave her a look. She only covered her mouth and turned back away.

"Until you admit you are and let out your true feelings, the pain you feel inside will never go away." I put a hand on her shoulder.

She shrugged it off

"I can't help you if you won't let me" I got up and started towards the door

"Where are you going?"

"To spend some time with the guys before they go"

"Want to come?" I asked my sister.

"Their still here for another week." She said. "I'll do something with them another day."

I shrugged and went out the door. Maybe if we don't give her any attention or sympathy, she'll snap out of her denial.

Chapter 31

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