Tough Love

April Parker's life is a mess... Then she meets a boy, and he helps her through life. Will she learn how to love again? Or will the one person she starts to love leave? April doesn't want to take chances. She doesn't want to be left behind again... Will she make thing better? Or end up pushing him away?


1. Chapter one: A new life


       "April! Come here right now!" I could hear my step dad, Paul's, angry voice from the bedroom. Tears started forming in my eyes, but I refused to let him see me cry. I walked down the hall finding him sitting at the kitchen table. It was only me and him ever since my mom died in a car crash and my brother, Will,  went to college. I missed them both so much and I hadn't had a normal life since then. I remember my mom like she's standing next to me. She had beautiful curly blonde hair, a perfect smile, and she was the nicest person in the world. She'd always make me and Will cookies before we got home from school on Fridays. My brother is pretty amazing too, but I never call him anymore because Paul never let's me talk to anyone. My real dad is somewhere far away from New York. Probably in California or something, I don't know, Paul wouldn't tell me. My dad and my mom got divorced when I was 3. He doesn't call or even write letters.  I've never had any good experiences with any males before, I honestly never had a boyfriend and at this rate I don't know if I'm going to get married. "Where the hell did you go last night?" Paul yelled as a slowly walked towards him. I gulped at the sight of him. He got up from the table quickly, I flinched. Definetly in huge trouble, "I don't know what your talking about..." I said quietly. I flushed, biting my lip unable to look into his eyes. He got up and slapped me across the face. Which sent tears streaming down my face. This abuse has been going on for four years now. He's cut all connections to the outside world except my phone. I want to call the cops on him but I have no other family to take care of me. Im 16 so I have to wait two more years to leave and get my own car. I only have one friend, her names Jade, she was my middle school buddy. She has brown hair and glasses that reflected her big hazel eyes. When ever I saw her she always had her hair in a ponytail and she absolutely loved peace signs. But Paul hits me all the time and leaves bruises on my arms and legs, so pretty soon I had to leave school and be home schooled. Not that Paul knows anything about knowledge. He wouldn't know what a book was if I smacked him in the head with it. I just take Internet schooling instead. Paul's in his mid thirties or something, I don't know he never tells me anything. He has gray hairs at the sides of his head and is almost never sober. One time, he threw a party and invited his friends. They got so drunk, they started touching my hair and calling me "babe" and "honey." They almost raped me... I was only 12. He never did anything about it, just laughed with his other friends watching them. I hit the one guy in the head with a glass bottle, escaping, and hid in the bathroom the rest of the night. The next day he made me clean everything up from the party, while he laid in bed with a hangover. 
"I won't repeat myself! Where were you!" he screamed, I jumped. His fists clenched at his eyes blazed with fury. I could tell he was drunk, because he picked up a vase and threw it. The glass made a large crash in the center of the room. My heart began to beat faster, I could literally heard it in my ears. 
"Paul. Please." I begged. My throat stiffened as the tears rolled down my pale cheeks. "You know damn well I didn't go anywhere!" I saw it in his eyes that he didn't believe me, he didn't want to. I did go to the party but I'd be dead if I admit it. The party was totally awesome! When I finally got to her house, cameras were flashing everywhere, people I didn't even know. Thoughts running through my mind, and I was thinking 'am i actually here!?' This party is amazing! I stepped into the house and recognized one person. My best friend. We've been best friends since kindergarten, so now I guess about 9 years! It all started when she dropped her books in the hallway because she was always a shorter kid than everyone else. I picked up her book and said "Hi! I'm April! Wanna be friends!?" and she said "FOR REAL!!?" and I couldn't say no to the excitement on her face. It made me feel proud that we were friends. 
 "You brat!" he raised his hand and slapped me. The force of the hit made me stumble backwards. "Your grounded!" he said walking back to his room. 
 "You can't run my entire life!" I yelled after him. Bad idea. He came back and took hold of my arm, and squeezed hard. The searing pain in my arm grew larger by the second, I cried out in pain. 
"Don't ever talk back to me! It's not ladylike"  he said smirking. He was trying to be funny and it was soo not working. Two can play at this game I thought. 
 "Yeah, you would know about being a lady wouldn't you!" I said shaking him off my arm, smiling smugly, proud of my witty comment. I wiped the tears from my eyes chuckling a little. His eyes lit up with anger, and his jaw clenched. 
"You think that's funny?!" he yelled. I didn't answer him, giving him a death glare. He punched me in the stomach, I heard the sinking thud as his fist collided with my stomach. It felt like an anchor dropped on me. The force of his blow knocked me back a few steps, my feet as dizzy as my mind. I fell to my knees and landed on my side. All my insides were crushing in, I felt so sick. A little vomit was creeping up my throat, making the tears flow from my eyes again. He kicked me in the back, making me cough up blood. A wave of pain rolled over me, causing me to grab my stomach in agony. 
"Stop! I'm sorry!" I pleaded, my voice shaking. With no more words he heads to his room like nothing happened. Wet tears streamed down my face as I laid there on the floor. My shirt coated with blood. I got up slowly, my knees wobbling, and ran out the door. It was raining, a blast of icy air speared through my clothes and prickled along my skin. I could hear Paul calling after me, threatening me, but I didn't care. I needed to finally get out of that hell hole. 
I ran until my legs hurt, my lungs were burning and I was completely out of breath. I didn't know where I was and I couldn't tell under the dimness of the street lights. I looked at my phone it read: Friday, May 10th,  Midnight. I came up on a small park and decided to rest. I think I'm far enough away from home not to be found. I sat on a swing for a while and thought about where to go. I can't go to Jade's... It would be to obvious. Sucks that she's my only friend, other than Jade's I have no other place to go. I didn't know what to do, I was so lost and confused. All I know is I'm never going back to that house. 
         I saw a wooden park bench and slept on it for the night. I felt like a hobo, wet, cold, and alone. 
          "Harry! Breakfast!" I sat up in my bed and yawned. I rubbed my eyes and slowly got off my bed. I walked in to the bathroom, switching on the light, and looking at myself in the mirror. My brown hair looked messy from the tossing and turning last night, it was sticking up in all directions. I couldn't sleep at all. When I finally did go to bed I had a horrible nightmare. 
        I quickly brushed my teeth then ran down stairs to see my mom making pancakes. "Morning" she said smiling brightly at me. I kissed her on the cheek and smiled back at her, "Morning" I grabbed some pancakes and sat down at the table, shortly joined by my mom. 
"How did you sleep?" she asked.  Her hand grabbing the cup in front of her, as she sipped from it. 
"Good..." I lied, eating some of my pancakes. My eyes wandered out the window, when I saw a girl walking. She shivered rapidly, I could tell she had been crying. She was soaked, her face was pale as a ghost and she looked tired. She looked lost, and I could tell she had no idea where she was going. "Excuse me mom" I said getting up from the table. I completely forgot I had sweat pants on until the chill hit me. I walked up to her "Excuse me uh, miss, are you okay?" I asked. She looked at me with a confused face. 
"I-I'm fine" she said shivering. 

"Are you sure? You don't look fine" I said concerned. 

"Yeah, I'm just-" she looked at me and  sighed. "Your right, but I'll be fine, don't worry about me." She kept walking but I grabbed her arm to stop her. She flinched and had a hurt look in her eyes. She reminded me of a lost puppy that got kicked to many times. 

I tried to be more gentle, "You should come dry off," I said. There was a short silence, then she slowly nodded her head. She followed me inside and I took her to the kitchen. "Mom this is, uh..." I didn't remember to get her name. 

"April," she interrupted shaking my mom's hand. I wondered what she was doing outside in the cold. She's lucky she didn't get pneumonia or something. Her blonde hair dripped with water and her clothes were completely damp. 

"Yea, April isn't sure where she's going and a little wet from walking in the rain last night I'm guessing" I looked at her and she nodded, "do you think she could dry off?" I asked. 
"Yes! Of course, come with me" she said taking her to Gemma's room. "You can borrow a few of Gemma's clothes." She handed April sweat pants and a long sleeve shirt, then took her to the bathroom so she could change. Gemma was my older sister, she's a year older than me. She took a school trip to Europe and is going to stay for two more weeks. We look alike but were not twins, we have the same brown hair and green eyes like our mom, but were so different. If Gemma doesn't get her way, it's war. If she doesn't have something perfect, it's war. And if you ever get near her hair products... It's definetly war. Other than that I love my sister. "What did you mean when you said she wasn't sure where she was going?" my mom asked whispering. 
"Well, she look lost so I thought I would see if she needed help" I answered. April walked out of the bathroom with her wet clothes in a bundle and her blonde hair in a bun. 
"Here, let me take those" my mom said taking her wet clothes and putting it in the dryer. "Thanks" she said. Then mom left, leaving me and April alone. I glanced at her for a moment, then I couldn't stop looking.  Blonde hair, blue eyes, pink lips... Gorgeous. She was as beautiful as the first spring flower. Light blonde hair like a wave of gold, and eyes as deep as the sea. I probably looked like a creeper, because she saw me staring at her and looked away. "Oh, uh, sorry. I'm Harry" I stammered. She looked at me again and gave a slight smile. 
"Nice to meet you Harry" she said. She extended her arm and I replied with a gentle shake. My mom finally came back, "April, Why don't you stay here for a while? Harry's sisters gone so we have a perfectly good room for you to stay in-" 
"I couldn't... I don't want to take advantage of you or anything..." April said quietly. My mom just laughed, 
"You won't be! And you would only have to stay until you figure things out okay?" April looked at me then looked at my mom. 
"Okay..." she said softly. My mom smiled and showed her to her room, I think she was happy a girl would be staying in the house for a while. But there was a little piece of me hoping she would stay longer than she wanted to... 

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