By Chef NorthernLight92
This is a story about my sister. What she did. How she did it and why. Here’s what you need to know before we begin.
There is no favorite child in my household – there is only me, Aria, and my older sister, Marisol. I think if either of us had been slightly more like the other, then a favorite would have been picked by our parents. But it worked out that my sister and I are two people, with the same blood, who are nearly complete opposites that balance out rather nicely.
Marisol is the wild child. Beautiful, tempestuous, a diagnosed manic depressive with a whirling mind, magnetism and an intelligence often forgotten. She is the whirling cyclone that causes my parents unparallelled joy along with insane levels of stress. She lies, she scams (to be fair, it was people outside the family she does this to), her grades rose and fell with moods, she leaves trails of broken hearts in her wake…but all of this is forgiveable because Marisol is just Good. She is kind, caring, protective and empathetic enough to cancel out her phases of chaos. My parents love her for it.
While she is the untamed ocean I am as calm and flat as a pond in the summer. People say I’m beautiful too, but I’m awkward and lack that fiery passion of my sister. While she would forget to do school work or blatantly blow it off, I meticulous research and hand in my assignments on time. I make consistent grades (A’s and B’s), played an instrument in high school and never give my parents cause to worry. I am sweet and reserved, loving and consistent. My parents love me for that.
And we love eachother. She always protected me from external forces. She’s the one who put a boy in the hospital for trying to fondle me when we were 17 and 15. She accepted the 2 week suspension without hesitation and a small smile. I protected her when a mood change would come through and throw her off the rails. I was the one who found her as she was shoving pills down her throat and stopped her before she washed them down with vodka when she was 12 years old.
“I have no control,” she cried to me as I stroked her hair and felt tears dripping down my own face, “it’s too high – I want to do everything, anything! Run, fuck, do whatever I want. I need to be adventurous and daring. Sometimes I just want to lie down and never get up. It’s exhausting being in my head all the time.” I wrapped the blanket around her more tightly and stayed silent. There was nothing I could say then.
Several hours later she hugged me, and said “thank you.”
I could only respond, “you’re my sister, my best friend, I’ll always do anything for you.”
Two years older than me, Marisol went off to college. She came back after her first year for some time off then went back and finished (or so we think…she declined going to graduation and we never received a degree in the mail) before becoming a Volkswagen salesgirl and making the amount of money only someone with her charisma can pull off.
This is where we start. With me in my senior year at small college in the South and Marisol several states over, living her chaotic life.
I was in my senior year, majoring in public relations and psychology. I’d never had a serious boyfriend. Sure I flirted but not the type of flirting that would lead to something more. I had lots of friends, that’s all I needed. I wanted a career, not a boyfriend so, therefore, I needed to work hard and not spend my time longing for boys. Marisol often joked with me about it – she had guys chasing her whether she wanted them to or not – and encouraged me to at least give serious dating a try.
“It’s fun!” She said on a phone call one afternoon, “plus you get free dinner and drinks most of the time.”
“I can pay for my dinner and drinks, Mari, so I’m good.”
She laughed over the phone, “alright Ari, whatever you say.”
I’m social and go to parties. I drink and dance and have fun when I’m not studying. I’m much less awkward than I used to be. At a party is where it happened.
It seems you hear these stories all the time these days. Girl had too much to drink and gets taken advantage of. One second, I was in a dark room dancing with my friends. The next, I was outside getting some fresh air. The next, I was on my back in the grass behind a dumpster with someone on top of me.
I lay there, weakly trying to push him off me. “No,” I said softly. He either didn’t hear or didn’t care. “Stop!” I said more forcefully, scratching at his face.
He slapped me, “shut up,” he hissed through gritted teeth. And it was only then that I realized it was a boy in my communications class I rarely talked to. I remembered he was a star member of the basketball team, rich kid who had a brand new Audi.
Afterwards, as my hand hovered above the phone to call the police I remember thinking it was hopeless. I remembered all he girls who reported their rapes and were dragged through the media. I remembered that I was drunk that night and wearing a short dress. He was a star and rich and I was a drunk girl in a short dress who was going to have every aspect of her life poked into if I reported him.
So I didn’t tell anyone.
Except my sister.
It took me 2 months. 2 months of self loathing, feeling dirty and ashamed. I could barely function. It felt like my body wasn’t my own anymore. He had taken something from me, something I didn’t think I could get back.
I finally broke down and told Marisol everything. She didn’t seem surprised. Well, she seemed surprised that this exact thing had happened, but she had known something major going on. She can read me like a book.
Marisol drove 13 hours through the night and got there the next day. I told her everything. I cried and she held me just like that day when she was 12 and I had stopped her from taking the pills.
She let me sob and sob and we sat there in silence for over an hour. Then:
“What’s his name?” She questioned
I told her.
I looked up at her.
“Does anyone else know?” She asked.
“I didn’t tell anyone, and I don’t think he did either. No ones been giving me funny looks or anything.”
“Okay,” She had that look in her eye I knew so well. That one that showed there was a storm coming. It was the look she got before something happened.
“Mari, please don’t do anything. Just stay here with me, okay?” I saw her try and get her emotions under control. I saw her fighting away the mania that was creeping in. Stressful situations tend to exasterbate it, and I suddenly realized that my telling her could push her over the edge regardless if she’s been taking her meds. I saw when she calmed down and smiled a sad little smile at me.
“Okay Ari, let me make you some tea and we’ll watch some silly little show. We can regroup in the morning and decide what to do.”
She got up and tucked me into the couch. I watched her long, wavy brown hair swish from side to side as she made me tea in my little kitchen. It took a while. She was clicking through her phone and had to do something in my bedroom.
I watched as she watched me drink the tea. Her expression unreadable. Within minutes the chamomile was putting me to sleep. She tucked me in more tightly and said she’d see me in the morning.
Around 10pm I woke up, groggy and disoriented. Barely able to keep my eyes open. I looked into the kitchen where I saw Marisol, dressed in a short, bright pink dress and my killer black heels. Her hair glimmering and falling perfectly straight, and blonde, down her back. I saw her stuff several black trash bags into her purse and examine the Kbar knife her marine boyfriend had given her for protection.
I tried to speak. I tried to move. But I was already drifting back into a dark oblivion.
When I woke up. She was making pancakes.
She stayed for the next several days. She was there when he was reported missing. She was there as the media caught onto the story and made it a national headline.
“Star college basketball player missing.”
She was there when a friend of his described the last moment he’d seen him. “We were talking at the party and then he suddenly stopped. He told me ‘I’ll catch up with you later’ and took off to talk to some girl I didn’t know. I never saw him again after that.”
She was there when the police asked the public for any information on this girl. Long blonde hair, pink dress, blue eyes was the only description they had of her.
She had left when they discovered the body at a nearby construction sight. Only a few minutes walking distance from the party. He had been ferociously stabbed to death then wrapped in trash bags and pushed to the bottom of a deep hole that was due to be filled with cement. The only reason they found him was because the guy who was supposed to pour the cement was sick for a couple days and the body had attracted animals into the hole.
She wasn’t there when it came to light that he has raped serval girls and the university had covered it up. These girls were now suspects in the investigation.
She was at my graduation. She arrived with my parents looking beautiful.
After I walked the stage I hugged her with tears in my eyes and simply said: “thank you.”
She responded , “you’re my sister, my best friend, I’ll always do anything for you.”
Marisol is chaos. She killed someone and I’m the only one who knows it. But she is kind, caring, protective and empathetic. She is Good. And I love her for that.