Willow House (First of a Saga)

Cassie Brooks, a girl with a background. No one wants her, no one needs her. So when she joins Willow House, what will the inmates think of their new member?

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8. Going Away.

 

I forced my aching legs up the stairs and found Ash’s room. I didn’t bother to knock; I just swung the door wide open and let it slam behind me. I stood there, weak, open and tearful, I cried. “You were right.” Both Ash and Mark looked up. I gasped as I realized Mark was there. I tried to run out but Ash caught me. “No! Ash let me go!” That’s when I saw Liam coming up the stairs. Ash released me and I slammed the door closed. This time so it stayed closed. “Cassie! Please Cassie! Let me in!”Liam banged on the door. I steadied myself against the door. Mark was stood above me as I descended to the floor and folded my knees in. “Cassie Brooks, what trouble have you caused in my care home?” I cried and screamed and kicked as he came closer. “Leave me alone! No one orders me, no one controls me and no one cheats me!” I screamed that last bit so Liam could hear it clearly. Ash came beside me and picked me up like Liam had when he had carried me to the office. He cradled me in his arms and rested my head against his chest. Mark opened the door, but I had no energy to fight Liam. I saw his face come up in view but it was gone before I could read his expression as Ash carried me down the stairs and into my room. He laid me on my bed and kissed my forehead. Then he kissed my lips gently. I couldn’t argue, couldn’t force him back. But I didn’t want to. He was right. He would always be there for me, when Liam wasn’t. I let my eyes close and I drifted off into sleep. But I knew Ash wouldn’t leave my side.

 

                                                                                                *****

 

I forced my eyes open. Ash was sat on my balcony window. My mirror was broken (more than before) and Liam had cheated me. It didn’t seem right. This was new and all too wrong. I nearly started crying again. Ash lifted his head up and came to me. “Shhhh... Shhhh don’t cry. Please.” I felt like a little kid. “I’m not five y’know.” He laughed and sat down next to me. I got up and ripped the clothes off of the scoured wardrobe’s hangers and stuffed them into my bag. “Whoa Cassie! What are you doing....? Oh no you are not running away!” He snatched the bag away from me and re-hung my clothes. “No damn way are you leaving.” I turned around and saw Liam in my doorway. “What more do you want from me?” I sat back on my bed, but kept my back to him. Ash had gone quiet. “I want you to know, Cassie that I never betrayed you, and I never will. God damn it Cassie! I love you! Why can’t you see how Molly’s twisting my words?” I heard him come closer. I felt the tears bubble up again. No way was I going to cry again. “Please, Cassie.” He knelt on the bed and tried to wrap me in his arms. I forced myself to push away, even though I wanted him. I stood up and rested my hands on the cool glass of my balcony window. Liam sighed. “You know where I am.” Then he left. I watched as he shoved his hands in his pockets, hung his head (a lot like Ash did) and left my room, closing the door behind him.

 

I got up and thought about going after him. But what could I say? Let’s start over? Let’s forget it all? That’s what I should say, that’s what I should do. So why couldn’t I? Ash came up behind me and pulled me into his arms. Not possessively or boyfriend like, just a hug. It was warm and simple, easy to work with. I pulled out of it and headed out of my room. “Tea!” I grumbled. I didn’t want to eat. My makeup was smudged, my voice croaky and my body felt like a tip. I shouldn’t be seen like this. Still, I plodded my way into the kitchen. But where could I sit? It was too awkward to sit next to Liam. Unfortunately, it looked like I’d have to, as Corey, Teresa and the thing as in Molly Carlton were sat down. Ash came and took his seat, nodding an apologetic glance my way. I sat down in my usual spot. Slowly letting time pass. Then Liam appeared, he looked awful. I wanted to take him in my arms and say it was alright. And I knew he felt the same. This was my entire fault. He sat in next to me and Molly with Molly being all flirtatious as usual. I ate in silence. I didn’t thank Mark, I didn’t look at anyone. I stared at the wall. It took me a long time to eat. I took the last of the plates as everyone had left, deciding to wash up. I dumped them in the sink and began slowly scrubbing. Mark and Liam were still in the kitchen and I guessed they hardly realized I was still there. “Liam. Your step-brother’s come back to us and said we can go ahead with the whole thing. Not that it matters, if you stay her-” I dropped a plate, causing it to smash. “You’re leaving?” I could feel my body want to curl in on itself. Liam looked over at me, with sad eyes. But Mark answered a question. “Yes, but that has nothing to do with you Cassie. That plate however has. It will come out of your allowances.” I wasn’t bothered. They could take my whole allowance if they wanted to. “No. You can’t.” I felt the tears that have been waiting all night prickle over my eyes. “Cassie, it has nothing to do with you, keep out.” Liam moved away from Mark. “It has everything to do with her.” Liam came closer to me. I didn’t move away. I didn’t stop him from coming close to me. “I told you Liam, not to make attachments! And what do you do? Exactly the opposite!” Mark was shouting, really loud and it scared me slightly. “I won’t go if you don’t want me to.” Liam was talking to me. He stroked my face gently, wiping the tears away. “Oh yes you will!” Mark was flushed, bright red in his cheeks. “He’s right. You have to go.” A flood of tears was coming. I walked away. I couldn’t embarrass myself. I couldn’t make him feel any worse. There are a lot of things I can’t do.

 

I headed back for my bedroom. The only place I felt safe. Ish. No sooner had I got there and reached my window had Liam walked in after me. The door closed shut behind him, leaving us alone. He came up behind me. But he didn’t come any closer than the foot of the window. “I’m not going.” I whirled around. “Yes you are. You are not throwing your life away because of me.” I turned back to the window to stop the tears from escaping in plain sight. I felt his arms come in around me. And I turned into them. Fighting was too much right now and I needed him more than ever. I let my body relax against him, allowing myself to cry into his shirt. He pulled me closer and I tucked my legs around his. “I’m sorry. This is all my fault.” He rested his chin on my head. “No it’s not. It’s Molly’s.” I sniffled. “What’s all Molly’s fault?” Molly stood just a way off my bed. Looking down at us disgusted.

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