Letting Go

After being brutally abused by her father and outcasted by her classmates, seventeen year old Keller Alvidas is glad and even relieved to spend her last year at Edge-of-The-World, the sleepy small town she grew up in. Everything changes when the Gabriels, a group of orphaned teenage boys arrives. They break all her rules about meeting new people but they too have secrets and when the truth comes out Keller has to decide wether to let go and save herself or to continue to be dragged through everything she wanted to run away from, all for one chance she might never get.


17. Escaping

Keller's P.O.V

I get out of the stall and run down the crowded hallways. Need to get home. My heart beats rapidly in my chest as people stare at my haggard apperance. They throw paper at me and their words set even more tears free.

"Get out of here freak," someone yells. What do you think I'm trying to do? I think to myself. Some people have the nerve to shove me.

"Don't touch her, she has some weird sickness. Didn't you see her put  all that sanitizer on?" More laughs. I wipe away more tears, I can't give them the satisfaction of seeing me cry. A lone sob escapes my mouth, too late.

"Oh, she's crying, that's so cute. Look the baby's crying!" Sonia yells. I stop dead and stare at all those laughing faces. Most of them I've known since kindergarden. Some of them were even personal targets of Sonia herself. My face is wet with tears and I bet I look like a glazed donut. I keep running but every hallway is full with laughing smiling faces. I hurry a little too fast and bump into someone. Luckliy they grab me around the shoulders and keep me from falling. Surprisingly it's James.

"Hey Keller,what's wrong?" asks James searching my wet eyes. I avoid direct eye contact and pull myself from his grip, no matter how much I don't want to.

"Everything," I mumble. I shrug off him and his comforting arms and run out the door, out of my humility.

I burst through the orphanage doors and ecape into my room. I shut the door with a bang and collapse onto my bed. I choke back tears and and bury myself in mountains of pillows and blankets. I feel my body get heavy with exhaustion and drift off to sleep with my arms around my ears to block out the laughs still echoing inside.

James' P.O.V

She runs away with tears in her eyes. Keller's face was red with embarassment when she struggled out of my grip and out into the blinding brightness of this morning. I was going to go after her when a strong hand grabs me from behind.

"She needs her space. Just leave her alone," they say. I turn around to find Ian.

"No, no. She needs me," I plead. He just shakes his head.

"Let her alone," he repeats. I obey and he lets go. I'm going to see her right after school, I think. I'll talk to her then.

Keller's P.O.V

Six hours. That's how long I've been asleep. It felt like I'd been sleeping for forever. I wish I'd been sleeping for forever.

I rake my hand through my unruly hair and find my nails crusted with blood. I almost forgot about that part. I sneak a peak at my mirror and find my body the same way it was this morning, broken. It made a slight difference though, my scar looks wider now, more prominent although it feels the same. It's getting dark outside and I decide to sleep more, maybe this is a big terrible dream. My door creaks open slightly and the intruder quietly staggers in. I sigh.

"James, I'm not in the mood to talk so just go," I yell. Great, now I'm rude.

"I'm not James and I don't want to talk. I just want to apologise," the person says. I recognize that voice anywhere. I hate that voice. My hands frantically search the bed when I come across a knife. A small butter knife James used to butter toast on my  bed before. Man, that guy loves food. My hand closes around the hilt and I speak through clenched teeth.

"Get out. If you don't leave I'm calling the police," I say. I sit up and face Gerald, my father. His apperance is shocking, his cheeks are gaunt and hollow. His brown eyes so much like my own are lifeless and full of guilt. My heart hardens, this monster doesn't have the right to feel sorry.

"Please, I just want to say how sorry I am," he pleads.

"How'd you you get in?"

"It wasn't that hard actually, I just walked in," he says with his old cockiness leaking through. He's in blue jeans and a black t-shirt. He strides up to me and I press up against my wall in fear. My knuckles turn white as he says with nostalgia:

"You sure have grown up without your father." That's it, that cracks me. I throw the knife, narrowly missing by a couple centimeters.

"Get out! I've never needed you! I've survived without you all my life! I don't need you!" I shout and scream while getting out of bed. I try to make it out the door but he beats me to it.

"I'm not leaving without forgiveness," he says. All the gentleness is gone and ke picks up the short butterknife.

"I'm not leaving without forgiveness," he repeats. I stumble back scared. This is too similar, much too similar. The attack when I was thirteen, Josh's ambush and now my dream merge into a single nightmare, this is my nightmare. I cower against the wall again as I shield my face with my sticky, bloody hands. He grabs my face, my briused broken face but to him looks fine apart from the scar. I grow stiff as he looks maliciously at me. I'd rather than die than be abused again. That's it, I can threaten death. I can use death against him.

I kick him and he lets go. I race up the  stairs to the rooftop with Gerald following me. I laugh with relief when I see Gerald limping. I truly am insane. I throw the roof door open and get engulfed in darkness. I fly to the very edge of the building. Gerald comes in panting, he never did know how to stay in shape.

"One more step and I'll jump," I threaten.

"You don't have the guts to," he retorts. He's right. I'd never jump, but I still I need to pretend.

"Put the knife down Gerald," I warn. He just laughs. He shows me his hands.

"You see these scars?" I notice the thickness of them and gasp.

"I cut myself everyday in jail to make it even with you. I just need your forgiveness."

"You made my life hell. I got bullied everyday of my life because of what you did to me. I had next to no friends because no one wanted to hang out with the freaky scar girl." I show him the scars snaking up my arms. "Your scars mean nothing to me." He steps forward, too quickly for me to see and grabs me again. Gosh, how stupid can I get. I feel tired all over again and my legs weaken. I can barely stay up when Gerald put the blade to my throat.

"Maybe I'll force forgiveness from you." he whispers.

"Not a chance," is all I say and he hits me. Spots dance in front of my eyes and I feel light headed. All of the sudden Gerald drops me. I bang my head on the ground and wince from the pain.

"Don't you dare touch her again, you dirty son of a bitch," someone yells. I'm in someone else's arms now and I suddenly feel safe so I know who to expect when I look up. James's blue eyes full of sorrow. I smile at his concern.

"How come when we meet it's always under these circumstances," I laugh. I hear sirens in the background and I feel like a thousand drums are pounding against my skull.

"It's a coincidence all right," he says. I pause.



I need to tell you something."

"What is that?"

"I'm just happy I met you." I smile.

"I'm happy I met you too."



"I think I'm crazy."

"Why's that?"

"First I'm bleeding and broken everywhere but people can't see it. Second," I hesitate remembering the day at the beach, the night we spent on the rooftop when he told me he was falling in love. "I think I might love you." The words barely leave my mouth before I escape the world and darkness claims me.




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