you're still here.
Maisie frowned as she took a few steps toward Liam. She thought he looked a bit odd. His quiff was too big and the navy suit that his mother had picked was something that he never would have worn. He would have wanted to wear a short sleeve t-shirt that showcased the tattoos that he was so proud of. She reached her hand down and rested it on his chest over where his still heart should have been beating, beneath the white cotton shirt was the still healing 'Maisie' tattoo that she would never see again. She creep over her lashes as the word 'never' seemed to echo in her mind, it was too final and this wasn't how things were supposed to end with Liam.
"I'm sorry dear, but the family will be arriving soon, so you will need to go back to your seat." The priest said gently from behind her. Maisie felt the nausea rising as she shook her head, reaching in and taking Liam's hand in her own. There was no way that she could leave him laying there like this to be all alone forever. She wasn't ready to say goodbye to him.
"Please, miss, you really need to move..." His concerned voice sounded a million miles away as the tears began falling thick and fast. She held onto his hand tighter, silently begging for him to squeeze it and tell her that it was okay, that he wanted her to stay with him.
"Sweetheart, come on, let go of him..." Her father's voice was soft as he rested a hand gently on her arm. She shook her head and let out a strangled sob. Her throat was burning from the lump that felt as though it was obstructing her airways and stopping her from breathing.
"Maisie, it's okay, come and sit with us..." Niall's voice was weak as he appeared at her other side. She took her eyes off Liam for a moment to look into the face of his best friend and her brother. His blue eyes were red and wet as he forced out a watery smile at her. She looked away and shook her head, grabbing Liam's upper arm with her other hand and shook it gently.
"Please Liam, don't do this, just wake up! Please just wake up!" She cried out. There were a few gasps and some loud sobs from some people in the pews at her words. She knew that she was upsetting some of the people there but she didn't care anymore.
"I'm sorry, Maiz... I have to do this..." Niall's voice was a broken by a sob as he suddenly moved in behind her. His hand gripped onto her wrists and before she realised what he was doing, he had tugged her hands away from Liam and was pulling her backwards. The sound that left her mouth was primal, mimicking an animal in pain as he guided her away from the coffin. She planted her feet into the floor to try and stop him from moving her but she was too weak from the emotion and he seemed to make easy work of it. She pulled and thrashed as she cried out for him to let her go, that she couldn't leave him.
Her father and mother were suddenly at Niall's side, helping him guide her out of the church, into the carpark and further away from Liam. She knew that they were all telling her that they knew how she felt, but then they would say that it would be okay, and that's how she knew that they couldn't possibly know how she felt. Niall held onto her, shaking at the tears that fell from his own eyes as she howled in his arms until there was no sound left, her mother and father doing their best to calm her down unsuccessfully.
"What is she doing here?" Maisie recognised Mrs. Payne's cold voice interrupting her now silent sobs. She opened her eyes to see the small woman glaring at her with bloodshot eyes.
"She came to say goodbye to Liam sweetheart, come on, let's go-" Mr Payne took hold of his wife's arm and attempted to lead her into the church as he spoke in a soft voice. The small woman ripped her arm from his grip and marched toward Maisie with her finger pointing at her accusingly.
"You are not welcome here! It's your fault he's dead!" She raged as her husband did his best to pull her back gently.
"It's not her fault honey, it was an-" She interrupted her husband again, not taking her eyes from Maisie who was standing shocked in the embrace of Niall.
"Don't you dare say it was an accident! He shouldn't have been driving in that weather!" She hissed, taking another step closer to Maisie, "If she hadn't called and asked him to come over, my baby boy would still be here!"
"I loved him! I never did anything to hurt him!" Maisie screamed at the woman's words. She didn't even see the hand before it made contact with her cheek. The stinging feeling came seconds later as the woman was dragged away from her and her parents stepped between them. Niall held her tighter as she stood there in shock, watching as the doors to the church were closed behind the distraught mother and her husband.
"Let's go home..." Maisie's dad was the first to speak as the organ began playing inside the church. The numbness that spread through her was instant. Liam's funeral was happening and she wasn't there. The last time she had laid eyes on him had been the very last time, and she would never see his face again. Niall lead her gently to the car and she didn't have it in her to fight anymore.
She thought about the casket being closed on his face, locking him inside of that box all alone forever while she was on the outside just as alone. She could see the tattoo that he had proudly shown her three weeks ago in her head and realised that she had nothing to keep him here with her, but she was going into the ground with him. He might have been the one that was physically dead, but every part of her was intertwined with him and she would never be the same again.