Twisted and Torn

Ali has known Reid for what feels like forever, he is the only person who's ever been there for her. With her parents always away on business, he's there, right by her side.
But soon she meets a boy of the shadows...a mysterious, intriguing character who she finds herself infatuated with. What is his secret?
Embark on a journey about a twisted love story with the protagonist whom must make a decision, in the most heart-wrenching circumstances.

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7. Chapter Seven

I felt like I was corroding, wizening, wasting away ... slowly and gradually, my life draining out of me as the weakness grew. There wasn't much pain though. How can it hurt when you're growing? In this case, shrinking? The life in me was leaking out so effortlessly that I knew in a few hours' time I would be completely wasted, dying a strange death.

Before I knew it, Lucas was on his feet again, swaying a little, but steady as he gripped my frail hand tightly and told me to close my eyes. I did. When I opened them again, we were back at the riverside he had first brought me to, only this time I was lying on the bed of rocks, moaning as I felt my life crumble horribly. I was about to die.

Lucas' eyes were pained. "I'm so sorry Ali ...:" he was moaning. I couldn't say anything. "This is all my fault, I shouldn't have taken you there. I shouldn't even have been so close with you!"

"What ..." I croaked. My voice was failing. Eventually, all of my body would do the same. There was no hope left now.

"I ... I'm not normal like you, Ali," he began. "I belong to their cult. Alex is a superior. He loaned me seventy years, Ali, seventy years that i couldn't give him back on time ... and now he's taking those years from you."

"Seventy ..." 

"Yes, I used to be an old man. And I hated it. I hated having to be so weak and helpless. So I borrowed some years from Alex and he gave me a year's time to return it. And I - I -" he hesitated. "Oh, I couldn't give away this freedom Ali! I was enjoying, doing everything I did when I was young ... I couldn't give all that away and go back to that wretched life of an old man. But Alex wanted his years back. And I - I decided to use someone else to pay my loan." He looked at me, his eyes brimming and voice cracking with guilt. "You."

Now suddenly. I was feeling pain. Crushing pain ... pain that was beyond anything I had known before. Lucas was going to sell me to those loan sharks? He had wanted me to die? All the trust, all the faith that I had in him was now broken. Shattered beyond repair. 

"I'm so sorry Ali," he breathed. "That day, when I brought you here, I was intending to summon Alex here. I was going to give you away but I couldn't! How could I have? How could I let you pay for what I had done? I - I like you too much, Ali. You mean too much to me."

I couldn't think anymore. The one person I had trusted so much ... This had all been a trap? That day at the cinema, he had noticed me ... he must have had the idea there. Did I look so naive that he thought I would just fall for him and let him sell me? But truth was, I did. I did fall for him. I had been so blinded by this infatuation for him that I didn't find it wrong to hurt Reid like that. I had been so foolish. But it was all ending now. I was dying.

"Ali, I won't ask you to forgive me ... it would be too much to ask, after what I -" he shuddered. "But I won't let you die, I promise. I'm going to buy you time, okay? I'm going back to Alex and  I'll fix everything, I promise you that. I'll be back soon." He squeezed my hand and in a blink, he was gone.

Even after his reassurance, I didn't feel okay. My faith in him had been crushed so much that nothing he did now would make it come back. I was afraid this was all a trap too. Had he gone to bring Alex here? Did he want me to die a more painful death? It could be anything. I didn't trust him anymore.

And lying there, my eyes closed, panic gripping my heart, I felt like I was alone, once and for all. I wouldn't even have time to say goodbye. Not to Reid, not to my parents. I was all alone now. I was left alone to die.    

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