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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29. Yes, Your Honour...

Keller's P.O.V

I'm sick to my stomach as I walk into the courtroom. The musty smell of it fills my nostrils until I almost gag, when was the last time they cleaned this place? The clop sound of my sandals as I make my way to the stand is deafening in this place. And then I see him, five o'clock shave and bloodshot eyes. My eyes. My father. Good lord.

My heart rings in my ears as I see professional lawyers with their placid little hands folded in their laps. Their cold calculating eyes trailed on me. Despite my fear I still feel deep respect for them, I'm working hard on being just like them. Well, not quite like them. I intend on working for side that's right, not the side that defends abusers. I take my seat across from them and settle down. Neilson and Jamieson waltz in and from there the case begins.

I don't pay attention much, it's all dull and boring, up until they call my name.

"Keller Alvidas, please make your way up to the stand," the judge says and I scurry up. The cold seat only adds to my discomfort and I don't hear the first half of what the judge says.

"Can you repeat the question please," I mumble and Jamieson throws his hands up in the air, as if we already lost. All Neilson does is run a hand through his hair.

"Miss Alvidas, are you paying attention?" the jugde asks bored. I nod a quick reponse.

"If you say so. The question was can you explain, in detail, what exactly happened when you met your father in the orphanage." I sneak a quick peak at Ian in the stands. He gives me an encouraging thumbs-up and I breathe a little easier, at least one of the Gabriels was here to support me.

"Yes, okay. So I woke up groggily that night, disoriented you can say," I fumble but continue, "And I just see Gerald at my door and I swear that I could've died right then and there." My story-telling is sub-par as of now but I push on.

"Anyways he tried to, to get me to forgive him and I refused. I did what anyone would've done, I tried to escape. But, but he wouldn't let me. Not without my 'forgiveness'. And I ran away. I ran up all the way to the rooftop, that's where he got me. He put a butterknife at my throat and said he'd 'force forgiveness from me'. That's when police came and then I woke up in a hospital," I finish.

"Is there anyone to back up that statement," the judge says. I open my mouth but no sound comes out. My tongue finds words and I answer. James.

"No, there is one person though," I say, "but he isn't here."

"And why is he not here?"

"I told him not to come," I say defeatedly.

"It's a good thing I don't  listen then," someone replies from the door. A rush of air bursts in as James saunters in looking flushed, he must've ran all the way here . Despite our fight I can't help but crack a small smile, he came. I let my head fall down a little so my hair hides my obscene smile.

"And who might you be?" the judge says letting his glasses fall futher down his face.

"I'm James Gabriel, a person who can back up Keller," he says as if it were obvious.

"Fine, take the stand." I get up and as I pass James I give him an a 'Thanks-for-helping-me-out-but-I'm-still-angry-with-you' smile and James flashes his 'I-don't-care-I-was-going-to-do-this-anyways' expression. After they swear him in he recounts the story I just told, exactly the same way if not making Gerald seem more maniacal.

"Gerald Alvidas, is this true? Remember you're under oath," the judge warns. I twiddle my lips between my teeth and spin my fingers around and around each other. Gerald's eyes twitch furiously and the blue vein on his face where my scar is on mine bulges.

"Yes, Your Honor..." he starts.

"Then I have heard enough! Gerald Alvidas I find you guilty of breaking probation and the attempted murder of Keller Alvidas. Stand as I give you your sentence," the judge commands. Gerald wears a look of extreme bewilderment and for a moment I'm not sure if he's guilty or not. All that registerd is the fact that I've been attemptedly murdered.

"Life in prison, no probation. It seems that you're not to be trusted with freedom like that," the judge says. And he's gone. Just like that, gone. No threats hurled in my direction, no spiteful words filled with hate. Just gone. Dizziness fills my mind to the brim and I suddenly feel faint. He's gone? Life in prison? I feel sorry for him, if he hadn't tried to kill me that day I'm sure I would've killed him.

---

"There she is! Look who is Ms.Future Lawyer everyone!" Will screams as I walk through the door of the orphanage. Ellis and Lorena are here and I throw myself down on the couch. James trails right behind me and I quickly avoid his eyes.

"How was it?" asks Ed in his deep husky voice.

" It went well, I guess," I shrug as James leans on the wall, away from me. The guys seem to pick up on it quickly and their eyes flick form me to James to me again.

"Woah, it literally just dropped ten degrees in here," mock shivers Al and I scowl at him.

"That's not nice Al," scolds Lorena and smacks him on the arm, hard. I give her a grateful smile and she returns one back.

"Ow, Ian control your girlfriend,"Al complains and I let a small giggle escape from me.

"Now, now guys. Remember why we're all here," says Will seriously.

"Yeah, why are you guys here?" I ask.

"Because of this!" he says and whips out a piece of paper with writing scribbled on it.

"You want me to do your homework?" I ask with eyebrows cocked.

"Goodness, no although that would be helpful. This," he says gesturing to the paper, "is a bucketlist. With everything every person should do before they die."

"And we're going to do them all together, all eight of us!" adds Ed.

"Ed, I was going to say that!" says Will.

"Why all this all of the sudden?" asks James.

"I feel old okay! And then I realized all the graduation stuff and I wanted to do this with you guys while we're all here," Will answers. I catch James' eye but quickly look away after.

"Who says I want to do this?" I ask.

"Come on, we know you want to," says Al as he does a little eyebrow dance. His eyebrow dance wins me over.

"Yeah, it does sound cool," I admit.

"Are the things on the list legal?" asks James who is still leaning against the wall.

"Mostly," Ed replies.

"Mostly? What do you mean mostly?" I ask.

"Oh you know what I mean and you already said that you're in," dimisses Will. I blow a huff of air out which sets the baby hair on top of my head into disarray. Maybe this'll be fun, if you know, we don't get arrested.

"What's on the list?" I ask taking intrest.

"That's the fun part, only Ellis and I know," Will says as he winks at Ellis. Everyone immediately glances over at Ellis.

"No. My lips are sealed," she says and purses her lips, just to prove a point.

"I for one am excited,"says Ed, "When does it start?"

"At three o'clock. Which is right now."

 

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