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.

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31. Right Before My Eyes

Keller's P.O.V

"Keep calm Keller," I whisper to myself as my hands cake with blood, Josh's blood. The bumps in the road have minimized until I'm almost positive that we're gone from Edge-of-The-World and have driven to some starnge country across the sea. The back of Lanny's van is windowless so there's no sure way of telling.

"Keller?" Josh asks.

"Hmmm," I asnwer not wanting to look him straight in the eye.

"I think I should put the gag back on you," he says weakly. I back away from him, has he been setting me up all this time?

"What do you mean?" I ask cautiously.

"I think Lanny's coming back to get us. He stopped the van," he murmurs. I pause, he has.

"Too late Josh, it's covered in your blood," I say holding it up briefly to show him. I place it back down and apply more pressure.

"Sorry," he apologises.

"It's not your fault," I say. I flick my eyes over the Josh's to see how's he's doing. His gray eyes glow in the dark, kind of like James'. Goodness, is James still laying on the pavement? Has Brown Eyes stabbed him too?

The door of the van opens with a bang and Lanny flashes his bloddy knife. I swear, if Josh wasn't dying right before my eyes I would've killed him right then and there.

"Get out," he snarls and pokes me in the ribs just to prove a point. I jump out and nearly trip on the uneven ground. The ground is covered with oversize rocks and gritty sand. There's a few bushes but no trees. The stars above are startling bright without streetlight to dilute them. It looks like the area you would expect area 51 be behind, it was beautiful if not lonely. It'll be hell for Josh.

A low moan comes form the back of the van as Lanny dumps Josh on the uncomfortable ground. To try to run away would be foolish, I would have to bring Josh with me and it would take forever to figure out where we are.

"Wait here, I have to meet up someone," Lanny grumbles as I continue to treat Josh. He runs up to a deep red BMW on the opposite side of the road. What the hell does he want with me?

"What do you think Lanny's up to?" I ask with venom in my voice as Lanny argues with the red car's driver.

"Lanny's a jerk but not this kind. I have no idea," he whispers amid his groaning.

"Shhh, he's coming back," I whisper. He shuts up instantly. Lanny saunters up, undeniably proud of himself.

"Good news, I got my fake ID Josh! I guess this was worth it after all. Sorry again man," he says patting Josh on the back causing  him to cough up more blood.

"You worthless son of a gun, YOU DID ALL THIS FOR A FAKE ID!" I spit the words in his face.

"Yes, Scarface I did. Everyone needs a social life right?" he laughs. Don't kill him, I think to myself, you can't kill him right now.

"You freaking stabbed your friend all for an ID? Die in a hole," I snarl while Josh giggles. Goodness gracious, he's delusional from blood loss.

"Me, die in a hole? Keller, no offence but this is just business, nothing personal," he says.

"Who sent you?" I ask with a deadly low voice.

"Can't say. All I was supposd to do was leave you out here where I was told you would die. Don't worry though, when I'm up in the clubs I'll make sure to toast to you all night long, love," he laughs. He stoops down and grabs my face, his gruff hands assulting my skin.

"What a waste, you could be pretty, if only you didn't have that ugly scar," he observes.

I spit in his face.

"Fiery one, eh? No wonder James went after you," he laughs as he walks away. He wipes his face clean before driving off with the BMW. Next time I meet him, I will kill him.

"I'm sorry Josh, we might be hear for a while," I say.

"It's fine, I got you with me right?" he laughs. His t-shirt is soaked with sweat and a ruby stain collects around his wound near his stomach. It reaches to his waist, he's going to die soon if I don't act quickly.

"Did you bring a cellphone?" I ask him out of desperation.

"Nope, I didn't know it would get this intense," he says.

"Okay, can spit on your wound? I read somewhere that it prevents infection," I say releasing pressure.

"No, Keller. It doesn't matter anyways, I lost a lot of blood. I'm dying," he says. I press harder.

"No, you're not dying here. I absolutely forbid it," I say defiantly.

"It's fine Keller. Why do you want me to keep living anyway? I thought you hated me?" he asks.

"I did," I admit.

"See, I told you. You're so honest about everything," he chuckles. I start to panic more, my hands are slick with blood. There's silence for a moment while I try to stop the bleeding. Josh's hand reaches up to gingerly touch my scar. I gently wave it away, I don't need anyone else saying how ugly it is.

"I always loved that scar, you know," he says after a while.

"Really, I was under the impression that it was the object of everyone's teasing," I say. Slight silence settles between us.

"Did you ever wonder why I didn't tease you as much as everyone else?" he asks.

"Not really, I always thought that you were just a big jerk," I admit. He smiles a little bit.

"I can't blame you, I acted like one," he pauses, "Have you ever read books where the guy is in love with the girl but is too scared to talk to her because he knows she dislikes him?" I nod, plenty of books are like that.

"Well, I'm the guy and Keller, I loved you," he says sadly. No, this can't be happening. He loved me? Impossible.

"You're lying," I say. He shakes his head with remorse.

"No, I'm not. I loved you but I was a coward, I teased and made fun of you because I knew that whatever I did you would be miserable anyways. The only reason I can tell you this now is because I'm dying," he says.

"Why didn't you just talk to me?" I ask with bewilderment.

"Because when I finally plucked up the courage you said, "Not in a million years Josh" and walked away. From then I knew that you loved someone else," he pauses again. I wonder if it hurts to talk.

"How's James?" he asks. I feel terrible, my love for James must be like a slap in the face for Josh. "Do you love him, with everything you have? Do you love him so much that you don't know if it feels good or if it just hurts? So much that you're willing to cut ties with him to make him happy?"

Lying would hurt ten times more than if I tell the truth.

"Yes," I say truthfully.

"Good, that's the way I loved you," he sighs. Stop, I want to beg him, please stop. Blood is running down my hands in angry rivulets. Josh's dark hair is plasered to his scalp with sweat and his face is set in pain. Tears fall from my face, he loved me. He loves me the exact same way I love James.

"What about Sonia?" I ask, he's dating her. Everyone knew that.

"I tried dating her but my mind kept slipping back to you," he says with a smile. His head falls back and and his eyes slip shut ever so slowly.

"Can you do me one favour?" he asks, his chest rising and falling with great effort.

"Of course," I whisper ot wanting to deny him his dying wish.

"Can you say that you love me? Just so I can hear it for once?" he asks as his breathing grows shallow. Can I do this? I love James, that's definitely for sure. Just suck it up Keller, I say to myself.

"I love you Josh," I whisper.

"Ahh," he sighs. I smile, at least that made him happy.

"James better not let you go, God knows that I woudn't have," he says in a sickly soft voice and his chest falls for the last time. I place my ear to his mouth, no breath. That releases the tears. I cry over his body, this bleeding boy whose last wish was for me to tell him I love him. I let my head fall and sob into his bloody chest, I almost don't hear the sirens from behind me and James shouting my name.

A/N

This chapter was a bit rushed also but I hope you guys like it! I might not update in a week or two, just saying. Thanks for reading :)

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