Harlow Jones is the main character in my book, Collide. She is 17 years old and dealing with a lot of heavy things. I’ve decided to share occasional bits from her journal, which she doesn’t religiously write in. It’s hard for Harlow to confess how broken she feels, even to herself. This is the first entry since her best friend, Lauren, died in a car crash caused by Harlow’s ex-boyfriend.
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This whole journaling thing used to be easier, when my mind wasn’t so heavy…when things weren’t so messed up.
It’s only been a few weeks since the accident. The bruises on my face are beginning to fade, but the ones on my heart…I’ll probably carry forever.
I miss Lauren so much that sometimes, it actually hurts to breathe. I feel like I am to blame for her death. Maybe if I had known the signs, I could have stopped Rhys from getting behind the wheel that night. Maybe Lauren would still be here.
Mom and Larry are worried about me. Larry tried to get me to go see a grief counselor. I went once, but I couldn’t stand it. I didn’t want to be forced to spill my heart to some total stranger who was catching a paycheck from my problems. I want to talk to someone I can relate to, someone who gives a fuck. Someone who won’t look at me with pity.
I have to put on a show, act like nothing bothers me…because if I let my pain show, I’ll break.
I’ve developed a thick skin. It coats around my fragile heart and makes me hard. I snap at Mom. I punish her because she is the closest thing to me right now, because Lauren is gone…and I am alone.
We are supposed to be moving to North Bay this summer. I am dreading it, but I know that it’s neccessary. I feel stifled in this town, which is ironic. Toronto is the capital of Ontario. But it’s true.
I still put up a fight. Acted like I didn’t want to go to some dumpy little town up North. That was for appearances.
I’m tired of walking around numb, but it beats the alternative of feeling pain.
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Next Sunday, I will post another entry from Harlow’s journal! I had a lot of fun writing this and sharing bits of Harlow that we don’t really get to see in the book. What did you think? Are you hungry for more Harlow?