The bench which had been cold and unwelcoming only moments before then seemed a perfectly good seat. Sal collapsed to it, letting her head fall to her hands.
There were no tears, there were no cries, there were no shouts or screams or rampages. She just sat there totally silent, totally still.
Ami settled down beside her, her arms folded over her lap and her eyes staring perfectly forwards, her whole body awkwardly parallel.
Sal stayed there for several minutes; when someone walked by, she nearly leapt out of her own skin.
Ami put a quick hand on her shoulder to calm her, but by then her eyes had gone large and her arms had gone tense.
“We should get you out of here.” Ami muttered, getting to her feet and turning to help Sal up as well.
But Sal seemed very set on the bench. “I’m tired of running away. I’m tired of having to move whenever there’s anything wrong. I’m tired of always being afraid.”
“Are you afraid right now?” Ami asked in a quiet voice.
Sal stopped to think over her answer before she replied. “Not really.”
Ami sat back down on the bench, and tried desperately to smile, but it never did work. “That’s good I guess.”
Sal shook her head forcefully. “No, it’s not. I don’t feel anything.” She tilted her head to watch the sky again; it was so still, twisted by the array of lights into unusual shapes. “You know what I want? To not be afraid, but to be happy.”
“You’re not happy?” The words were an odd mix between being a question and a statement.
It made Sal smirk, “Are you?”
Ami watched the sky as well. “Nope. But I don’t really know what that is. I’m just me, I mean, I lived by myself for so long I got used to it, I guess. I was never happy, I don’t think at least, and so I have nothing to compare my emotions to. I got used to being lonely, so that’s just normal.” She looked at Sal and grinned. “You know, I never even knew I was lonely until I became friends with you.”
Sal smiled slightly, but it seemed faint and unsure. “Maybe that’s why it’s so hard.” Her voice was weak.
“What?” Ami prompted.
“For me. Why it’s so hard for me to be alone. I have my whole life behind me which was stuffed with people and things and interest, and now… Well, right now I’m a convict of the world.”
“An innocent one.” Ami added.
Sal let her head drop, and her lips drooped as well. “Sure.”
“Why do you sound so unsure?” Ami sounded honestly concerned, suddenly leaning in to hear her reply.
Sal just shrugged, but even that seemed unsure. Which was odd, in Ami’s opinion, because she was pretty sure that shrugging was an act to show indecisiveness… You couldn’t be unsure about being unsure, could you?
“It’s just, I feel guilty, okay? I’m not sure, because like you were saying, I haven’t really felt it much, but I… I think I feel bad about something. But I don’t even know what; I didn’t do anything, did I?”