"What's wrong, Sebastian?" I asked with a soft voice. The darkness did its best to hide him, but I knew he was there.
It had been many years since I first met Sebastian in that classroom. Not once has he given me the impression that he was sad. Now was the first time and it had me worrying more than I should have. After all, he was the only one I cared about in this world and I was the same to him.
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"I don't know, I do not," Sebastian replied from the darkest corner.
"You do know, Sebastian," I replied. "Are you thinking about my mother?"
"She was mad with you, very mad."
"That's what you expected and so did I. Nothing we can do about it. She thinks I am crazy."
"Do you still believe I exist, do I exist?"
I stared at the corner and Sebastian stepped forward into the light. His slouched figure was disturbing in nature, but not to me. The unusual appearance was softened by the feelings I had for him. He was the closest person to me and now he was scared.
"Sebastian, please," I replied, sitting up in bed and reaching for his hand. "You're different from everything else like I am different from everyone else. We are fortunate to have met."
"I still believe my presence has damaged your existence, I damage you, I hurt you."
"My existence is only damaged by the memories without you. I care about you, Sebastian."
Sebastian lowered the tip of his beaten top hat as if the shadowed face ever showed. I felt him grow distant with each passing second, but I wouldn't allow it. I pulled the being close and held onto him as tight as I could.
"You promised you would never leave," I reminded Sebastian. "Make peace with that now, you are all mine."
"I am and always will be, always will I be."
The next morning I had coffee alone. Sebastian had never left me alone for this long. I felt a sadness within myself, but denial kept me from crying. When it came to things I didn't understand about Sebastian, I tried to figure it out with a clearer mind. In that morning, I had anything but a clear mind.
I left my dorm, pulling my backpack on as I went. It wasn't long before I bumped into April.
"Good morning, Miss Gloom," April greeted.
She was a spritely woman with the personality to match. Yet, even now she could see I was unhappy and still made light comments. I felt April feeling a pang of sadness at the sight of me.
"You know that guy I was telling you about?" I asked April.
"The one that's a figment of your imagination?" April asked, but regretted it quickly. "Sorry, you know I don't mean it badly. What about him?"
"I haven't seen him since I woke up," I replied.
It was easy for me to forgive her, considering I needed someone to talk to.
"Sebastian, right?" April murmured.
"Yeah. I had this fight with my mother recently...she heard me talking to him. Now she thinks I am crazy and Sebastian feels it is his fault."
"That...that sucks," April replied.
"Tell me about it."
"Yet...did you ever do anything to prove that he is real?"
"He talked to my dad."
"Yeah, but you know, something that could help you see or others see as well? Listen, I know you don't want to hear this, but-"
"Then don't say it, April. I am not damaged and I am not dangerous. I'm ...alone."
April looked at me with a mixture of impatience and sadness. Soon, it was only sadness.
"Hello, hello," Sebastian greeted.
I spun on my heels and soon April did as well, although very confused as to why I shifted so suddenly. Sebastian stood in the shadow of a tree. I didn't hesitate and ran towards him. I wrapped my arms around him and spun around his body. I noticed April looking at me strangely.
"He is back," I told her.
"Oh...okay," April replied. "Hi, Sebastian."
"Hi, April, hi," Sebastian replied.
"He says 'hi'," I told April. "Seb, where were you?"
"I left to talk with someone close to you, close to you. I couldn't talk to your mother, but he was talkative, very talkative."
"Oh really? Why didn't you tell me, Seb? I was worried you had left."
"I left while you slept and I hoped to be back sooner, be back sooner. Yet, your father had a lot to say to comfort me, comforts me. Your mother is a broken woman, very broken, a broken woman."
"Yeah, I know. Yet, that is her problem now. I tried and my father died trying."
"He doesn't want you to try," Sebastian warned. "He told me, he told me to tell you, tell you."
"I know, Sebastian. He told me when I was younger too."
I looked past Sebastian at April who was waiting there with her hand up. It was almost as if she were in class, waiting for the teacher to choose her.
"Yes, April?" I asked.
"Can Sebastian stand behind me for a moment?" April asked. "I want to test something."
I knew where she was going with this and a flutter of excitement filled me up. With that, also a dose of fear.
"Sebastian, I am going to hold my hand behind my back and you need to tell her how many fingers I am holding."
The instructions were clear and soon April was standing there staring straight at me. Sebastian was staring down towards her hand.
"How many?" April asked.
"Three, three," Sebastian told me.
"Three," I smiled. April's eyes widened.
"Now?" April asked.
"Two, two fingers.
April jumped towards me and embraced me in the warmest hug I had in a long time.
"I am so glad you're not crazy which means I am not crazy too!" April yelled into my ear.
I hugged her back and looked over at Sebastian. For so long I wondered, but never had the guts to find out. Now I have the truth and I cannot be happier.