I Know You're There: Malevolent Innocence

*Conclusion to the I Know You're There trilogy* Reuben's dead. Never to return. Tori doesn't grieve, she gets on with her life. In fact, her and Damien's wedding is coming up. Sure, she loves him, but not like she loved Reuben. Everything's fine; absolutely fine. Despite the fact she cries herself to sleep, and prays for Reuben to come back every moment, everything's fine. What am I saying? It's Tori Hills, nothing's going to be fine, especially when she's about to devote her life to the wrong guy. 'I swear, if mine and Reuben's love was fire, we'd be nothing, but ash.'


2. 'Give me some food!'

"Tori!" Ollie whined, when I didn't hand him the food first.

"Ollie!" I copied his tone, smirking.

"Give me some food!" he laughed, trying to grab one of the takeaway bags.

"Ollie, be civilised," Mollie playfully hit his arm, and Ollie laughed again.

We all sat down, and I served out the Indian meal. I knew what Damien and Ollie would want, so I'd managed to get everything. Sure enough, the kitchen was a mess, where Ollie had the simplicity of making sure it didn't burn. He failed miserably. Typical, I supposed. 

Chatting easily, we laughed about our pasts, but not daring to venture any further than four years ago. Mollie kept poking Ollie's dimples, which was both cute, and entertaining. I wish I had dimples... They're so cute! Ollie hated his dimples, but he loved them because Mollie did, if that makes any sense.

"Did you get a dress?" Damien tried to ask casually, but you could see the interest in his eyes.

"Yup, I most certainly did," I smirked, taking a sip of my water.

"And I'm guessing I can't see it until next month?" he smiled, guessing correctly.

"'Course not," I replied, grinning.

The 23rd of July was going to be perfect, and no one, absolutely no one, could say otherwise. It was our special day, and we'd gone to extremes to make it special. What's wrong with the perfect couple finally signing the papers? Is it because we weren't perfect? That I was using him for my own sanity? Or that somewhere, deep down in the darkest depths of my mind, I wanted him to stop the wedding? How sad is that? I couldn't even say his... Reuben's... name. It hurts it really does.

Whenever Damien went out, all I'd do was cry myself to sleep, praying that somehow he'll come back for me, and we can have that happy-ever-after. Even if he did come back, I highly doubt Damien would let me know, or let me within a thousand mile radius. Let's just say, after Reuben was killed, I was heartbroken, and Damien hated to see me hurt. Actually, if Reuben somehow rose from the dead, and pronounced his love for me, Damien would most likely kill him for hurting me so much.

That's the thing, though! Reuben didn't hurt me! He never hurt me, he never came close to hurting me! He did everything in his power to protect me, but I got hurt because he was killed. It wasn't his fault that he was shot, it was mine! He made a break for it, because I hurt him. I kissed Damien. I hurt Reuben. Reuben ran, accidentally into the clutch of evil, and ended up being killed. It's all my fault.

It was hard not to burst into tears right then, eating with my family, because of those horribly true thoughts. I knew why I was marrying Damien, but it was so horrifically wrong! I had horrible nightmares, that on the day, I'd end up saying 'I can't', instead of 'I do'. It would be so easy to say, and I'd never have to spend another moment near Damien. I could mourn for Reuben for the rest of my life, slowly withering away. And that's why I was marrying Damien. Reuben would want me to move on, right? But he wouldn't want me to be with Damien... God, I'm such a screw up! Why can't I be dead, not him!?

"You okay?" Damien asked, rubbing the small of my back.

I'd learnt not to squirm under his touch, but I needed a lot of self control not to slap his hand away, "Y-yeah, fine," I mumbled.

"Still can't lie," he smiled sadly, pulling me into a hug.

Breathing heavily, I forced myself to hug him back, pretending to love him. I did love him, just not in the marriage way. Why was I so not-loyal? I was betraying Reuben! So what if he wasn't exactly around anymore? I loved him to death, which was exactly how everything resulted, but I still loved him. Tori, you stupid, stupid girl!

"Do you want to talk about it?" Damien persisted, massaging a tense spot between my shoulder blades. 

"No," I replied, way too quickly.

"Are you sure?" he frowned, concerning himself over nothing.

"Yes," I snapped - jeez Tori, why are you such a bitch!?

Damien held his hands up in defense, and moved away from me. Biting my lip, to hold the tears back, I excused myself to use the bathroom. Practically heaving everything I just ate, I fell to the cold, tiled floor, leaning over the toilet. I wasn't bulimic, I was just petrified out of my mind. I simply couldn't spend the rest of my life with Damien, but I had to. I felt someone pull my hair out of my face, and I stiffened, Their light sigh told me it wasn't Damien, but Mollie.

"Second thoughts?" she asked, seeing straight through my barrier.

"Pretty much," I groaned, as bile began rising in my throat.

"You're still in love with that guy," she sighed, but in a oh-that's-so-cute way.

"Pretty much," I repeated, my back against the wall.

"I know it's a lot to ask, and it may seem impossible, but you have to forget about him. If you don't, he's just going to ruin your life," Mollie advised.

Suddenly, I ripped myself away from her, "No, he's not ruining my life! Damien is! And I ruined Reuben's life! I'm the one who got him killed, it's all my fault; don't ever say he's doing something like that to me!" I yelled, but slapped my hand over my mouth straight after. Oh my God, Tori, you selfish, ungrateful bitch!

Luckily, Mollie seemed unaffected, "Tori, if you're that crazy about him, why are you marrying Damien?" she tenderly whispered, hoping the others hadn't heard downstairs.

"Because... Because... I need to... I need him," I murmured, dropping my blurry gaze to the floor, "I don't know, I just have these crazy fantasies that somehow, Reuben will come and save me, and I won't have to do this."

Mollie's eyes filled with sadness as she pitied me for being so damn delusionally bipolar, "Well, he's got one month to show up."

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