Boxes | Chapter 10: Rebel No Box

Written by: Kevin Gatti

The next morning, Carabelle’s mom was awoken by a phone call. It was Pamela’s husband calling to inform Carabelle’s mom of some devasting news. “I have some horrible news. Pamela was rushed to the hospital overnight after experiencing severe pain. Apparently, she had internal bleeding inside her box. She didn’t make it. She passed away at the hospital this morning. They’re suspecting fail play and they’re opening an investigation into it…”

Before Pamela’s husband could finish speaking Carabelle’s mom had dropped the phone out of her hand and fainted, collapsing to the floor. Alarmed by not hearing a response, Pamela’s husband called for help to Carabelle’s house and Carabelle was rushed to the hospital herself.

A couple hours after Carabelle’s mom was rushed off to the hospital, Carabelle and Sasha reappeared from behind a bush near Carabelle’s house. They had spent the night without their boxes in the woods not too far from Carabelle’s house. They had left their phones in Carabelle’s bedroom so neither of them had any idea what was occurring. They sneaked their way back towards Carabelle’s house. Carabelle had a key and the two quietly proceeded into the back door in the kitchen. Carabelle looked around and listened for a moment. “Come on. No one is home.” She said. The two then went upstairs and into Carabelle’s bedroom.

Back inside Carabelle’s room, the two put their boxes back on. Then they checked their phones. “Oh wow. My dad has been trying to call me.” Sasha said.

“Of course. They’re probably looking for us. I’m sure my mom told everyone what she saw.” Carabelle stated.

Sasha started to panic. “Oh no. My life is ruined.”

Carabelle rolled her eyes. “Join the club. It’s better on this side anyway.”

Sasha was becoming very concerned. “My dad wants me to call him. He said it’s urgent.”

“You can if you want. You do what you want. You know why they’re calling though.” Carabelle said to her.

Sasha sat on the bed and took a deep breath. “I’ll call him later. I just need some space right now.”

Carabelle gave Sasha a hug. “Let’s go for a walk in the park. It’s a nice day.”

Sasha agreed and the two left with their boxes on this time.

Meanwhile, Carabelle’s dad was just finishing up a nice walk himself. He had spent the night in a nice hotel. He was doing exactly what his wife asked him to do. He was realizing how much of a good idea it was to get away for a little bit. He was enjoying his time alone. When he got back to his car after checking out of the hotel, he checked his phone for the first time since the night before. He had a text from Pamela’s husband asking him to call and that it was urgent.

Carabelle’s dad sat in the car and called Pamela husband wondering what the urgency was. Pamela’s husband informed Carabelle’s dad about the death of Pamela and how they were investigating it. He then went on to inform Carabelle’s dad that the shock of the news put Carabelle’s mom in the hospital as well.  Carabelle’s dad raced to the hospital without any delay. He rushed his way to her room to be by his wife’s side. When he got to her room, she was lying in bed completely unconscious. “Oh no! She’s in a coma! Why?! Oh Why?!” He yelled out. He pulled up a chair to be by her bedside. He sat down and put his arm around her arm as he began to cry. His plan was to stay by her side until she woke up. He felt he owed that to her, just like he felt she would have done for him.

That afternoon, Carabelle and Sasha were walking along enjoying the nice day. The two were still in their own world ignoring the calls and texts of their parents. Suddenly, as they were walking, a van pulled up. Ms. Betsy got out of the van with a group of people and started to walk towards them.

Ms. Betsy had a huge sinister smile on her face. “Well hello Carabelle. You thought you escaped me. I told I would personally make sure you got a red box. Well, here we are. You just love defying everyone, don’t you? I got a red box just for you. And who’s your friend here? Does she want one too?”

“NO! Leave her alone!” Carabelle yelled.

Sasha remained silent.

Ms. Betsy moved closer to Carabelle. “It’s okay. We’re here just for you anyway.” She then turned to the group of people that were with her.  “Take her yellow box and give her a red one from the van.”

Carabelle then ripped off her yellow box and threw on the ground. “You know what? I’m not wearing any box and you can’t make me wear one.”

Then to Carabelle’s surprise, Sasha then yelled, “I’m taking mine off too! I’m no longer wearing a box either!”

Carabelle was stunned. She looked at Sasha in complete disbelief.

Sasha then started to struggle to take her box off. “Actually, maybe not. I can’t get my box off. It’s stuck. I’m serious. It’s stuck. I can’t get it off.”

Carabelle rolled her eyes. “It’s okay Sasha. Let it be. This is all me.”

Ms. Betsy didn’t like that Sasha was trying to take off her box as well. “YOU SEE THIS! You see this rebellious act! Give her a red box too! I think we have another one in the van.”

Sasha continued to struggle with her box. “I’m serious. I can’t get out of my box. I’m really stuck.”

Ms. Betsy yelled to one of the people in the group with her. “Get her box off! She’s clearly incompetent.”

The person in the group also couldn’t get Sasha’s box off either as Sasha kept moving around in a panic. This made Ms. Betsy impatient and annoyed. “FORGET HER! We’re here for Carabelle anyway.” She then got in Sasha’s face and said, “You better watch yourself or you’ll end up in a red box too one day! I would start with distancing yourself from this one!” She pointed to Carabelle.

Ms. Betsy and the group of people she was with got back in the van and drove off leaving Carabelle now in a red box and Sasha shaking in the same Nurse box.

“Now what are you going to do Carabelle?” Sasha asked.

“Don’t worry about it. It’s my problem. Go on. Get out of here. Listen to her. Distance yourself from me.” Carabelle said as she continued to walk down the street.

Sasha yelled to Carabelle, “Are you serious, Carabelle? Is that what you want? Just tell me what you want? You always make things difficult. You can never decide on anything.”

Carabelle stopped walking and turned to Sasha. “No. You’re wrong. I can make decisions. That’s not the problem. The problem is that no one can accept what I decide, especially the things that mean the most to me. The problem is that no one can accept me for me.”

Sasha was upset by what Carabelle was saying. “What are talking about, Carabelle? Did you just see what I did? I just try to take off my box for you, because I thought that’s what you wanted? In fact, most of the decisions I make are catered around what I think you want.”

Carabelle started to shake her head. “See, that’s the very problem, Sasha. Did you try to take off your box for me or because you truly wanted to be out of the box? Because I don’t want you to do it for me. I want you to do for you. You see, that’s the thing. Everyone is looking for approval.  In this world, everyone wants to fit into these preset boxes. No one cares about who we really are. But I care about who I really am, and I want to be around people who care about who they really are too. I want love to be natural and free. I don’t want that shoved in a box either.”

Sasha stood silently and just stared at Carabelle.

Carabelle continued as she pointed to a tree about a block away, “Listen, I’m going over by that tree. I’m taking off my box and I’m going to take a seat on the ground. If your box was really stuck and you were really doing it for yourself then come join me, with or without your box. If you were just faking your box being stuck or you’re not doing it for yourself, then just go home. I don’t want to force anything on you. You do you, and I’ll do me.”

Sasha continued to stare at Carabelle without saying anything. Carabelle turned away and began to walk over to the tree.

Back at the hospital, Carabelle’s dad was still holding onto his wife’s arm when a nurse entered the room. Carabelle’s dad immediately jumped up. “Is she going to be okay?” He asked.

The nurse looked confused. “The doctor hasn’t stopped by yet to talk to you?”

“No, you’re the first person to come in.” Carabelle’s dad said.

“Oh, she’s perfectly fine. Everything checked out okay. She’s just sleeping. They’re just waiting for her to wake up to send her home.” The nurse explained.

Carabelle ‘s dad got excited. “Oh, thank you. Thank you! That’s such good news.” He said as he went back over to his wife and put his arm around her arm to wait for her to awake.

Later that evening as the sun was setting, Carabella sat alone under the tree. On the ground behind her was as silhouette of her box less body sitting by the tree. Regardless of what anyone else thought, in that moment, Carabelle was free and accepted exactly as is.

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