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Never Let Me Go by McAvoy, J.J. (1)

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Kill Me, Save Me

DORIAN

May 1st

Keep fighting.

Why did you do this to yourself?

How am I supposed to go on without you?

Why did you do this?

Those were just a few of the things I wanted to say to my twin brother, Donovan, as I watched him sign the ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ order while the nurse patiently waited for it. I wanted to take it from his long, bony fingers and throw it out the window, maybe even set the damn thing on fire.

He looked nothing like the brother I used to know. We were identical twins, with light brown hair, fair skin, and blue eyes—sea-blue eyes, as our mother used to say. However, for the first time in thirty-three years, we looked nothing alike. His skin was yellow, his eyes bloodshot, his hair looked almost gray, and every time he touched it, strands fell out. He was so thin, I could lift him like a child. What made it worse was that he’d done this to himself, just like our mother, just like our father. They’d all poisoned themselves with drugs and alcohol.

We were a family of four, our parents had died of alcoholic liver disease, and Donovan was going to be next. Our family, the Rhys-Gallagher family, had a genetic predisposition to drink and a high rate of addiction. Our mother had warned us of this while popping a Vicodin and pouring herself a glass of wine. We were only six years old at the time. After losing both her and our father, I never took a sip of anything alcoholic. But Donovan… Donovan, on the other hand, didn’t have that kind of control. All his life, he’d been attracted to things that could kill him.

“Stop looking at me like that.” He tried to smile, leaning back against the headboard. He’d chosen to spend his final moments here, at our family beach house in the Hamptons and not in New York General.

“How should I look at you?” I replied, shifting in my chair.

“I don’t know, but not like that.” He hung his head, staring at his hands. “I’m in enough pain already. I can’t take it for you to be pissed at me.”

“I’m not angry—”

“Yes, you are. I can feel it. I’ve always been able to feel what you feel, Dorian. Don’t bother lying to me now. Besides, it’s rude to lie to a dying man.”

Then don’t die.

If he knew how I felt then, if he knew how I’ve always felt, since we were kids, why was he leaving me? Why was he was saying goodbye forever?

“Dorian—”

“You’re right,” I whispered, blinking away tears. “I am angry, Don. I’m fucking pissed. And hurting and frustrated. But I can be all of those things and still love you. I love you so much, lil’ bro, that I wish I could give you my liver. You’re the only family I’ve got.”

He smiled, fighting back the tears of his own. “I’m glad you can’t, because I would ruin that one too. And you're only two minutes older.”

“Older is older.”

I didn’t have the strength to say it the same way I used to, in jest. This wasn’t funny. This was tragedy. We had all the money in the world and if there was anything I could do or buy I would have done it. I was a match to him, I could have been a donor. I would have given him anything he needed. But it was too late. Too many of his organs were failing, he was beyond my saving. His whole body was just simply dying, and we could do nothing but let him die. Why? I didn’t understand! Why?

“I’m sorry,” his voice cracked when he tried to speak and placed one skeleton-like hand over mine.

All I could do was stare. It was like I was watching myself die. Taking his hand, I squeezed gently. I didn’t speak. What could I say? I had no words. I just had this deep ache in my throat. It didn’t feel like rushing fire, but rather like a slowly burning log was in my throat.

“We have to talk about the funeral.”

Closing my eyes, I shook my head. “Okay.”

“You know what I want, right? You better not get it wrong, or I’ll….” He trailed off.

And I tried to lighten up our conversation, though I knew it wouldn’t do much good. “Throw my Nintendo in the pool again?”

He grinned, and I saw how dirty and yellow his teeth were. “That’s what you get for breaking my bike.”

“There was a recall on it later, so you should be thanking me.”

He made a face. “Don’t put me in the casket in a suit… Never that… Better yet, put me in naked.”

“Ah, how about no? The last time I see you, it will not be naked in a coffin,” I replied, trying to ignore my heartache.

“Fine, but I want—”

“You want bright, fresh, long-stemmed red-and-white tulips, like the one’s Mom had at hers. At the reception, you don’t care how many famous family-friends come, just make sure there isn’t any bloody caviar. Also, I should use only candid photos of you, because those are always the best ones. Better yet, one of you on your Harley. You don’t want to look like a stiff in a suit. And last but not least, I shouldn’t be angry or uptight about it, and serve alcohol. Just because we have a problem doesn’t mean everyone else should have a bad time, right? You like the thought of people telling stories about you over raised glasses.” I recited the words he’d said to me months ago, almost verbatim.

“I still don’t know if that eidetic memory of yours is cool or creepy.” He started to say something else, but I rose to my feet, grabbing the basin beside him when he started to cough up blood again.

“Ahh… Urh.” He gripped my shoulder as he gasped in agony.

“I need help in here!” I called to the nurse, who was already coming in with morphine.

“Why couldn’t I stop?” He cried, blood dripping from his lip. The nurse took the basin from me and cleaned him with a cloth, dabbing his cracked lips gently. “I’m so sorry, Dorian. So sorry.”

I didn’t blink away the tears this time, I just let them fall, helping him back on to his back and sat at his side. “I know. This isn’t all your fault. It’s a disease, you were sick. I’m not mad at you.”

He clenched his hand, tears coming out his reddish eyes. “Why couldn’t I be strong, like you?”

“I’m not strong, you know that,” I whispered. “I walk around like I’m all that, but you know better than anyone, I’m not as strong as people think. I’m so scared of what’s going to happen once you’re gone, and I’m alone.”

“You’re not alone. I need to show you something.” He tried reaching for his bedside drawer.

“I got it.” I helped him readjust on the bed before opening it. Inside was an oak cigar box. “Isn’t this Dad’s?”

“He gave it to me before he died. He said I should only put the best things inside. Open it.”

I didn’t want to. It felt like if I did, he would give up fighting.

“Please, Dorian.”

Inside was a photo. Pulling it out, I froze, heart racing, and all I could do was glance back down at him.

“Donovan.”

“Yeah.” He smiled brightly, he was so happy seeing it. “It’s a boy.”

My eyes drifted back to the grainy black-and-white ultrasound photo. “You have a kid? When? Who?”

He took the photo from me, his eyes teary and wet. “It was four years ago, you didn’t know because we weren’t talking then. You said you couldn’t watch me kill myself. It was probably the darkest time for me. But I met a girl. She was a real sweetheart and one hell of a fighter too. She did her best to try and save me. I did what I always do and fucked up. I cheated on her more than a few times. When she told me she was pregnant, I told her to abort it. She punched me in the jaw. We got into a fight, and I left, but not before taking all the money… Fuck, man.” His hand shook as he placed it over his month. “I just up and left her with nothing. She didn’t have family or friends or anything. She didn’t even know who I was, but she loved me.”

“What was her name?”

He finally looked up. “Luella. Everyone called her Lulu, and I feel like an ass because I can’t remember anything else. My memory of her, of everything, is so fucked. I spent most of my time with her in Brooklyn. I’ve always wanted to find them, tell them I’m sorry I wasn’t man enough to stay. Please, Dorian, promise me you will find them. Find out what happened to Lulu and my son. They need to know I’m sorry. It’s all I ask.”

“I swear I will.” I didn’t know what else to say.

“You think he would look like me? Like us?” He asked, and I laid down next to him just like when we were boys. He talked about the life he wished he could have made for himself. Until he closed his eyes for good, taking a part of me with him too.

May 9th

Donovan’s funeral went off just the way he wanted, like one great, big happy celebration for everyone but me. Guests laughed and cheered and told stories I’d never heard about him before. In those moments, I saw him clearly, happy, full of life, and then it ended and everyone left. As I walked around, I realized how cold and empty everything was now that he was gone.

Why did I work so hard?

What was the point of living now?

What am I supposed to do now?

I’m alone now!

Before I even realized what I was doing, I started shoving everything off the desk in my father’s old study, grabbing the lamp in one corner and tossing it across the room. If it could move, I grabbed hold of it and threw, shook, and shattered it. And maybe it was a sign, maybe it was the devil rubbing it in, mocking me. After all, what were the odds of a liquor bottle rolling from behind book stacks as I shook it. I stared at it for a moment, the clear liquid inside, and all the old reasons for never touching it, never drinking, didn’t seem to matter anymore.

Bending down, I picked it up. I was done. I was tired. I just wanted the pain to stop. So I unscrewed the cap, and just as I was about to put it to my mouth, I heard someone say, “Please don’t.”

For a second, I thought I’d imagined the voice. When I glanced back, I saw a woman with beautiful hazel eyes, smooth warm skin, and long, dark brown wavy hair. She stood at the sliding doors wearing a simple black shirt and skirt. In her hands were trays and a large bowl. One of the maids? She placed them on the floor before rushing over to me. Taking the bottle from my hand, she opened the window and dropped it, allowing it to shatter into a thousand small pieces on the ground below.

“I understand you’re grieving, but you won’t feel better after drinking that, believe me,” she said.

“What if I’m not looking to feel better?” I asked.

She frowned, and she looked truly hurt by my words. “No one is ever looking to feel worse. We all want to feel better but sometimes don’t know how.”

For some reason, I just laughed. I mean, what else could I do but laugh at her? “My brother is dead. My mother is dead. My father—you guessed it—also dead. There’s nothing in this world that will make me feel better. So, let me feel worse. Let me feel something.” The cleaning crew had yet to get rid of all the glasses by the foyer. I marched over to them and reached for one. She ran past me and grabbed everything, even spilling a little on her shirt, then dashed back into the study and threw them out the window.

I stood there for a moment, stunned, before following her. “Have you lost your goddamn mind?”

“YES!” She hollered, her whole body shaking, eyes filling with tears. “If you self-destruct, who’s going to remember your family? Who’s going to remember him? Who’s going to put flowers on his grave and tell stories—”

“THAT’S NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS!”

She inhaled deeply, like someone had stabbed her, and her eyes widened. She looked like she was struggling to speak, to breathe.

“You knew him?” I whispered, and she looked away. “You knew my brother?”

Her voice shook. “I did.”

“How?”

Exhaling, she looked back at me, and I expected her to speak. But instead, she closed the space between us and her lips were on top of mine. Her breasts brushed up against my chest, and her hands went to the side of my face, gripping onto my hair. She tasted like butterscotch, and I opened my mouth, wanting more of her. My hands went to her hips and then grabbed onto her ass under her skirt.

“I’m so sorry. I’ll leave,” she said, panicked, when we broke apart, breathing each other in deeply. She tried to move away, but I didn’t want to let go.

I kissed her back, wrapping my arms around her. She froze for a moment before relaxing. I brushed my tongue against hers, and I couldn’t help but moan. For the first time in I didn’t know how long, I felt free from pain.

“That made me feel better,” I whispered. Neither of us moved. She stared into my eyes, and I could feel her chest rising and falling against me. Slowly, she let go, and so did I. I half expected her to leave me.

Instead, she took a step back and unbuttoned her shirt, her eyes never breaking contact with mine. I pulled off my tie, licking my lips at the thought of kissing her skin. When her skirt dropped, so did my belt. She stood there in nothing but a bright yellow bra and underwear.

“Stop,” I demanded before she took them off. “I want to.”

“Okay.” She dropped her hands to her sides.

If this was a dream, I was going to enjoy it to the fullest. I spun her around and unclasped her bra, sliding it off her shoulders. I took her breasts into my hands and she jumped, taking in a breath.

“Why are you doing this?” I whispered into her ear before biting onto it softly. “I don’t even know you.”

“Ahh…” She moaned when I pinched her nipples. My other hand drifted down between her thighs. “Because it makes me feel better too.”

This woman can’t be real.

Women always threw themselves at my feet for either of those two things. “What do you want? Money—?”

“You can keep your money.” Her hand wandered into my pants, grabbing onto my cock. “I just want to feel better, not alone right now. Isn’t that what you want too? I didn’t think much past that. So, you can keep your name and your money. Now, please tell me you have a condom on you.”

She didn’t make sense to me. But I didn’t have the fortitude to fight it. It took me a moment to remember before I let go of her to reach into the desk and grab a condom. She never looked away from me. I saw the desire and lust in her eyes that undoubtedly matched my own. I pushed her up against the bookcase, spreading her legs. Again, I kissed her. This time not as soft as she’d kissed me. This kiss was dirty, wet and sexual, our tongues playfully pushing against each other.

Gripping her thighs, I thrust forward and grinned wickedly at how she responded to me, arching her back.

She cried out in pleasure when I kissed her neck, burying myself into her wet pussy. She clenched me tightly, her breasts rocking forward.

There were no words between us, just grunts and groans. I took out all my anger and frustration on her poor pussy, slamming into her so hard that the books around us fell off the shelf. All I could smell was butterscotch, and all I could hear was the sound of our pleasure and skin smacking together. She matched every one of my thrusts.

“Yes,” she cried out, and gripped the bookshelves. I took a nipple between my teeth, squeezing her thigh harder.

She cried out as she came, her hazel eyes glazed over.

She smacked me hard across the cheek, and the side of my face burned.

For a second, I was stunned. My cheek burned and then it tingled, and it spread all throughout my body.

I looked at her. “Do it again.”

She smirked, slapping my other cheek.

The pain and the relief from it felt good.

Pulling out of her, my cock throbbed and twitched with need. But I had to satisfy another desire altogether.

“Hold on to the desk,” I commanded.

Without question, she moved around me and latched on to the dark wooden desk, her smooth, round ass facing me.

“Like this?” She asked seductively, leaning over even more.

“Do you like to be smacked as much as you enjoy smacking me?” I ran a hand over her ass.

“Why don’t you find out?”

SMACK.

Her hands clenched on the desk, she shivered, and best of all, her lips parted as she cried out in pleasure.

“It seems like I got my answer,” I whispered, moving her hair back over her shoulders.

She swallowed, and I could see her getting more and more excited. “What are you going to do now?”

SMACK.

SMACK.

“Fuck!” She cried out, dropping her head, and I rubbed circles into her red ass.

“We will get to that, but I want to see how much of this you can take.”

SMACK.

Her legs quivered.

SMACK.

She panted, her chest rising and falling with each deep breath.

SMACK.

“Harder.”

SMACK.

I felt the ache in my hand that time, but she still didn’t tell me to stop. Her ass was so red I was sure she would have begged me to end it. Instead, she bit her lips and her eyes shifted to me, daring.

“Again.”

SMACK.

She cried out, “Please, please fuck me.”

She didn’t have to ask a second time. Kissing both red cheeks, I clung to her waist and slid into her. My eyes rolled back at how wet and tight she was for me.

“You are like a dream.” I thrust deeply into her as I kissed her back.

“You… So…good.” Her voice trembled with me inside her, and it was music to my ears. She was driving me insane.

I can’t take this anymore.

I’d been hard for her the moment she kissed me, it had taken all my strength to hold back.

“Fucking Christ,” I grunted, coming at last.

This was much better than any drink would have been.

May 10th

ringgggzzz

“Umm…” I sighed, rolling over on my bed, trying to close my eyes and turn off my phone as it rang and go back to sleep.

ringgggzzz

“Damn it.” I groaned, reaching for it and answering. “What?”

“Good morning to you too, do you and your guest want breakfast?”

Guest? It was only then did I remember her. I glanced over to the other side of the bed. There she was, lying naked in bed, breathing softly, her hair a mess on her face. She looked so innocent, gentle, and beautiful.

“Breakfast—”

“Later,” I whispered, mesmerized by her. So much in fact I didn’t even hear what he said next. Instead, I hung up and laid back down, staring at her. Reaching over, I brushed the few strands of her hair off her face. When I did, she smiled, leaning into my palm. Her eyes opened and when she saw me, tears fell but she smiled through it. It took my breath away, so I couldn’t speak first, she did.

“Donovan,” she whispered and reached up, brushing my hair too, “you keep breaking my heart, and I keep running back for more… I hate you, but that doesn’t mean you just get to die.”

The tears fell from her face and she bit her lips to hold back a sob. I didn’t understand what her relationship was with my brother, I didn’t understand anything, I just knew she was hurting…like I was hurting, and I reached over and wrapped her in my arms. She sobbed on my chest. Her tears felt like they burned. I kissed the side of her face, the top of her head, I tried to give her the same strength she’d given me last night.

Calmer, she looked up at me, her face red, her eyes puffy, and she kissed my lips, and what could I do but kiss back? This was the only way we knew how to cope to get past the pain. I think in the back of my mind, this wasn’t wise, but I didn’t care, the outside of this bed, outside of her, hurt, and I wasn’t ready to go back to it.

We kissed.

We moaned.

We indulged in each other.

My mind was in a haze, fogged over by lust, by her, and this heaven we were creating with each other. Each moan from either of us seemed to be crying out for the same thing…

Save me.

Please save me from the pain.

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