How did I get here?

Over the course of the last year, Reed Johnson's life has made some interesting twists and turns, and sadly, very few of them were for the better. Now, to get her away from the scenes that provoked her post-traumatic stress, her father has chosen to move the family back home to Nazareth in Pennsylvania.
Both old and new friends quickly start to make an impact on her life, and pretty soon, Reed is caught up in a web of drama while dealing with a lot of stuff herself. With an already fragile mental health, who knows how she'll end up?


27. The devil shows

After dropping the girls off at their houses along with all their bags I drove home. It wasn't that late and I still needed to cook. I headed straight for the kitchen and opened the fridge. "Now lets see. What could we possibly make." I said to myself. "I don't know. You tell me." Tim answered.

I whirled around with my hand on my heart. "You scared me! Where is Daddy and David?" "They went to see some movie tonight. I wanted to wait for you." "Thanks." I smiled and kissed him. "So how was shopping?" I had texted him that I was going shopping with the girls and not to worry. "It was great! I got a bunch of new clothes and two new leotards." "Not to sound stupid or anything but... What the hell is a leotard?" I chuckled at him. "You know those things that look like bathing suits and sometimes have long sleeves that gymnasts and ballet dancers wear? That's a leotard." "Oh..."

"Did they say anything about when they would be back?" "Yeah they said they would eat out." "Oh. Well then what do you want to eat?" "I was thinking we should go out tonight. You remember the italian place we went to on our first date? Here's the deal: The owner Mario? I went by to visit them all a few days ago and he really wants to meet you. And those people are practically family to me. It would mean a lot." "Ok but you're paying." I teased him. He laughed at me and sent me to go get changed.

I bolted up the stairs and threw on a dress. Not too fancy but still a nice dress. I put my hair in a ballerina bun and put on a little bronze colored eyeshadow  to bring out the color in my eyes. After all he had said it was sort of like meeting his family and I wanted to make a good impression. Even though they had seen me before. I dabbed on some eyeliner and rushed downstairs.

When I came down Tim was at the foot of the stairs and his mouth popped open at the sight of me. I laughed at his dumbfounded face and walked over to push up his chin. "You look amazing." He said and kissed me. He helped me get my coat on and took the keys. I didn't mind. I trusted him with my pumpkin. He drove us to the restaurant where the same table as last time was ready for us.

The owner walked over and Tim said something to him in italian. Then he stood up and they gave each other that "Man hug" where they clap each others backs. I never really understood that hug... "I didn't know you spoke italian." I said. "Yeah Mario and Fabricio taught me. This is Mario, Mario this is Reed." I stood up and Mario clasped his hands on either side of my head and kissed my cheeks. I went with it.

"So you are the famous Reed eh? He wasn't kidding when he said you were bella. He did well this time!" He said in a strikingly italian accent. I loved it and answered "I like to think so." He laughed a booming laughter and called out something to another person in italian. A laugh equally booming sounded from the kitchen. I realized that he had retold my words and smiled. This was going well!

"Sit sit!!" Mario said and pulled out my chair. "I will bring you the Mario special eh?" he said and without waiting for an answer rushed into the kitchen. A waiter came to take our drinks order and Tim ordered a beer for himself and a coke for me since I still didn't drink. All of this he did in italian. It actually sounded kinda sexy when he spoke italian. I smiled and he looked at me. "What are you smiling at?" "I like it when you speak italian." I answered never taking that smile off my face.

After we had eaten we were the last two people in the restaurant and Mario invited us into the private part of the building where they lived. We sat in the living room and they started interrogating me. I smiled and went along with it. Every now and then I gave a funny answer and they would all laugh and shout stuff in italian. I laughed along with them and the room gained an easy atmosphere. We all laughed and had fun.

The little group consisted of Mario, his wife Dorotea, their son Fabricio and Mario's mother Eloisa. When Tim whispered in my ear that it was probably time to go home we stood up and announced that we were leaving. Everyone got up and kissed our cheeks. It was so italian and classic! After a long series of kisses and promises to return we went back through the now closed restaurant and got our coats.

Meanwhile Mario ran to the storage room and came back with a bottle of wine, a bag of homemade biscotti and four little glasses of tiramisu. I tried to protest but they said that it was a way of making sure I came back. I would have to return the glasses sooner or later. I chuckled at them and we said goodbye.

On the drive home I sat in the passenger seat smiling the whole way back. "They adore you." Tim said with a loving smile. "I adore them!" I answered and his smile widened. I leaned over and kissed his cheek. I was so glad that we had finally had a quiet and nice night together. Lord knows I hadn't relaxed in a while.

We pulled up in our driveway and got out. As we walked to the door I saw a bush in the little garden move. At first I thought nothing of it but then it moved again and I saw the tip of a boot sticking out. I grabbed for Tim's arm and pointed at the bush. He saw it too and stepped in front of me. I got out my phone and called the police. Ever since the second attack from Ben I had them on speed dial. They didn't even answer. They knew my number and they knew that if I ever called they needed to get their asses to my house ASAP.

The figure behind the bush stood up and yes. It was definitely Ben. He stood with a wicked smile on his face and I expected to see a knife in his hand again. But no. He had stepped away from his usual weapon and switched to something much more efficient. A gun. Apparently he hadn't seen me calling the police. Because he held his finger to his lips to signal that we should be quiet. To say "Or else" he wiggled the gun.

I was frozen with shock. All the pain and hurt and anger flared up inside me but I couldn't move. Tim was tense and ready to jump him. Ben walked towards us with the gun pointing at us. We didn't move full knowing that movement was exactly what he wanted. I saw over his shoulder that two officers were sneaking up on him with their guns pointed at his legs. They would take him out if they needed to.

When he was about three meters away from us he stopped. That horrible voice of his said "Well well well. You got a new one now didn't you? Instead of that loser who carried you to the hospital last time." My muscles tensed when he mentioned Alex. I noticed that Tim's did as well. "Well same shit different name. Because in the end none of them can stop me from doing what I want." I surprised myself by responding. "What do you want Ben? Why cant you just be satisfied with the damage you've already done?" His creepy smile widened. "Because you still haven't learned the lesson yet have you? You belong to me Reed! Nobody else! Me!" So that was what this was all about.

By now the officers were very close to him but he still hadn't noticed. They nodded at each other and one of them tackled Ben to the ground while the other one put his gun in his back and retrieved Ben's gun. He threw it to the other side of the garden. I turned and buried my face in Tim's shirt. I heard Ben yelling my name and calling me horrible things. I dug my head deeper into Tim's chest and he led me inside. He called my dad and a few moments later he and David showed up. Tim let them take over. He knew that they were better suited to deal with this. Daddy put me to bed and once more David came in to spend the night. Daddy went to get the gun from the lawn so the little kids on the street wouldn't get a hold of it.

I fell asleep in my brothers arms knowing that I was finally safe. But also I had a lot to deal with. I still hadn't heard from Jane, Ben had just assaulted me again and I had a big performance in three days. 

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