Do I care if I die?
That question was stuck in Kathy's mind and she could not come up with an answer to it.
What would happen if I died? Kathy thought as she walked through the neighborhood, Who would cry? How would my absence effect other people?
Kathy went down the list of people she knew and imagined their reactions if she died.
My family probably wouldn't care... She thought, a tear falling from her cheek, They never pay attention to me anyway.
Kathy knew this wasn't all the way true, but in her mind, it was close enough.
What about Chris and Angie? Kathy thought, Chris would probably at least be surprised. Anyone would be surprised if their classmate died. I'm sure he'd at least be a little sad... What about Angie? I don't know her as well, but I don't think she hates me.... Then again, it seems like everyone in their little group hates me right now.
An aching pain hit Kathy's chest.
Leo... She thought, How would Leo react if he found out I was dead?... He would have to care some, we at least had something for a while. Something.... But now he's mad at me because of what I did to his little girlfriend.
Kathy's expression darkened even more.
Tae-Hyun. Kathy thought, I don't even want to think about her.
She tried to push the name out of her mind and went through possible reactions from other people from her school.
What am I doing? It's not like I'm going to die anytime soon... But would I want to?
The idea of death was extremely scary to Kathy. She usually tried not to think about it much, but now, she couldn't stop thinking about it.
Kathy sighed to herself and walked into a coffee shop. Warm air and the smell of coffee beans hit her face as she opened the door. Soft murmuring came from the tables as friends talked and quiet music came from a few small speakers on the ceiling.
It felt good to get out of the cold. Kathy had her winter uniform on, so it had long sleeves, but it was still starting to get cold outside and she hadn't thought to bring a jacket.
Kathy cautiously strolled over to the register and said softly, "May I just have a regular cup of coffee?... Decaf?"
The guy behind the register smiled and said, "Yeah, sure thing. That's $3.00 please."
Kathy took the money out of her pocket and gave it to the guy. He put it in the register and said with a warm smile, "Thanks."
The guy handed Kathy a coffee mug and pointed to a table behind her.
"Pick which one you want there." He said, "Then, you can return the cup there."
"Thanks." Kathy said.
"Yeah, have a nice day." The guy said.
Kathy nodded and went to fill up her coffee cup. She watched the steam rise from the cup as it filled up. The coffee smelled so good.
Kathy sat down on one of the soft brown couches near the back of the coffee shop.
"Everything is so peaceful here..." She said to herself.
I wonder what it would be like to live at a coffee shop? Kathy thought, To just be at a coffee shop all the time.
She looked around the shop. The atmosphere was as warm as the coffee.
Kathy sat and people-watched for a while, sipping her coffee. She wasn't happy, but she wasn't angry anymore. Her mood had shifted to melancholy rather than fury.
Kathy looked up at the clock on the wall; 5:30.
She sighed and reluctantly put her empty mug in the plastic bin the register guy had shown her earlier.
"Time to go home." Kathy whispered to herself.
As she reached the door, she looked back at the warm, happy little coffee shop. She hated leaving. It felt so safe and humble there.
Kathy pushed open the door and was hit in the face by a gust of cold autumn wind. She went outside and walked slowly down the block.
By myself again... Kathy thought, kicking a rock as she walked, It's going to be this way for a while. It can surprise you how you can be in a house with five brothers and sisters, or a school with several hundred kids in it, and still be alone.
The weight of depression began to crush her again. It has ceased slightly as she was sitting in the quiet little coffee shop, but then she started thinking again.
The only thing worse than going back to school is being stuck alone all day in my house while everyone else is at school or work. Kathy thought, I don't know if I'll be able to take it.
As she reached her block, Kathy said softly to herself, "Everyone should be getting home by now."
She walked up to her house and opened the door.
Lunkwill was sitting on the couch and he turned his head with Kathy came in. His eyes widened and he stood up quickly, "Kathy!"
Kathy didn't say anything.
Lunkwill got up and hugged her, "Kathy, thank God! I didn't know if you were going to come back!"
Kathy pushed her brother away and said in a monotone, "Of course I was coming back. Don't be an idiot, Lunkwill."
Lunkwill furrowed his eyebrows and said, "Hey, what's wrong? I was really worried about you because of earlier."
Kathy scowled at her brother.
"Uh... Okay..." Lunkwill said, lowering his voice, "Should I not tell Mom about what happened?... You can try hiding the room for a while, until you can come up with something."
Kathy pushed past Lunkwill and went down the hall.
Lunkwill turned and said, "Uh, hey, Kath..."