Keeping Secrets

All Aileen ever wanted was to forget. You shouldn't need to be told; death doesn't make good memories. Moving to Beacon Hills has placed more stress on the mental locks that hold all of Aileen's secrets, and there's no telling what will come to the surface. Will she fall deeper into her hopeless pit or rise up with others like her?
*Teen Wolf Fanfiction*

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28. Adversarial

(Season three Episode four)

"What's wrong?"

"Nothing." I say. She looks into my eyes and searches for anything to prove I am lying. But she can't.

"C'mon, let’s go eat some food."

           We head back down the hall and into the kitchen again, where Mr. Chasity had finished preparing breakfast. Teresa makes a plate for herself and hands me a plate from her cupboard. I take it from her and put some food on my plate, not sure if I will even have the appetite to eat it. Teresa makes her way to the living room where the television had already been turned on. I sit on the floor with my food while Teresa curls up on the couch flipping through the channels.

           After a while, I get up and clean my plate and return it to the kitchen. Teresa yells at me to get her more food, which I do and she praises me for it on the way back. Mr. Chasity is sitting at the dining room table eating food while reading his book. It's nice and quiet here. I could picture the two of them doing this every weekend. Cooking food watching cartoons and reading old books that reek of dust and, just maybe, a little bit of mold. Of course there would be those days when Teresa would have to visit her mother.

            I return to the living room and flip through some of the movies in her CD covers. There are so many movies. I always wondered how they would have movie nights practically every day, but know I know. Not only do they have a surplus of movies, but they also have Teresa. That girl could watch a movie a few hundreds of times before tiring of it. Amazing how one family could be interested in so many types of movies? There were old westerns, actions, dramas, comedies, romance, and even documentaries. They have so many movies that they had to discard the original cases and fit each movie into a sleeves, if I didn't know they were movies I would have thought the movies where enclosed photo albums.

"How many movies would you say you have?" I ask turning to Teresa holding a movie from John Wayne's collection.

"I stopped counting after a hundred." Teresa says shrugging, turning the channels again sick of cartoons.

"Hey, you're going to have to get ready soon." Mr. Chasity calls out. I feel my heart fall down to my stomach.

"Where are you guys going?" I ask putting the movies back and returning to my spot on the floor in front of the couch.

"My dad is one of the committee members for our church, or something. I have to go with him because he is scared of me being alone. Considering..."

"What's been going on lately?" I say feeling my stomach fold. The thought of the murders hurt me. And everyone else it seems. I let out a breath, "Do you guys mind some company? I don't have anything to do for the rest of the day, and I don't really want to go home while, Rita and Johnathon are gone so..." I let the rest of the sentence drift away as I wait for them to answer.

"Sure, I would love the company," Teresa says getting off of the couch deciding to get ready, now that she had something to look forward to. She returns a few minutes later, "Ready to go?" she asks me, looking to her father who was still far from ready.

"We still have a half hour." he says taking a sip of orange juice scowling.

***

           Almost an hour later, I find myself at the doorway of the church with Teresa. It was a nice place. The parking lot wasn't too large, but still nice enough to where you didn't have to squeeze in between two cars. Behind the parking lot there was a playground for the children near the woods, and a nice pit for cookouts; complete with picnic tables and a little pear tree for shade on sunny days.

"C'mon, let’s sit outside for a while."  Teresa says heading towards the playground. We sit on a nice concrete bench near the playground on a hill. It's such a beautiful place, I can imagine parents sitting on the bench looking at their children play, "You know, when my mother and father were still together, they would sit here and watch me play after service with all of the other kids my age. Now, most of the kids I grew up with became jerks, and well... I told you about my mom."

"It's a nice place." I reply.

"It is, but my butt is so numb. Let's go inside, I can give you the grand tour of the place." she says getting up and crossing through the parking lot back to the church entrance.

"Sounds fun." I say getting up and following her. I sort of wanted to go inside, I'd gotten the feeling someone or something was watching us in the woods.

"So, it has two floors. The first floor is the main one, with the sanctuary, social hall, nursery, and of course the kitchen." She opens the door for me and I walk in to the dimly lit area, so peaceful, "This area here is where you can advertise events and talk to others about announcements, and right down that hallway ahead of you, we have the two libraries."

"Two libraries?" I question.

"One for the children and the other for the adults." she explains, "The hallway on the left is for the children's choir. Here are the kitchen and the social hall." she says as we walk through. I laugh at the various vending machines in the hall; Teresa doesn't find it that amusing, "Now here is the sanctuary."

"Not as large as I expected." I say looking at the space.

"We have three services throughout the day, so we don't get too crowded, and the free dinners from the kitchen are far more popular," she pauses by the staircase, "however, the second floor is my favorite."

"Why," I ask as she leads me up the stairs.

"This is where all of the offices are, and where the children do their studies every Thursday night."

"Oh. Wait why Thursday?"

"I don't know, ask the pastor. But this... this is why I love the second floor." she says opening a closet door filled with seasonal decorations and children's costumes.

"Sweet, a closet." I say following Teresa through the small space.

"Close the door behind you, no one can know we are back here."

           I do as she asks and the area becomes pitch black. I feel butterflies in my stomach, scared I might get lost and never find the way back out. I feel Teresa grab my hand and lead me through the closet that was more of a tunnel. We run into numerous things that fall over or skid out of our way as we continue through the darkness. I now understand how much faith I have in Teresa. I am willing to follow her through the darkness even though there may be rats and gosh knows what else.

"Are we there yet?" I ask running into, yet another plastic tub filled with bells and candles.

"Just hold on a sec."

"Ever thought of bringing a flashlight when you come down here?"

"You have a phone now don't you." she replies quickly.

"Yeah," I say feeling my jacket pocket and pulling it out even though there were no way any of us could see. I hesitated to turn it on, scared of what I might find. Dust, spiders, rats, dead rats, maybe even homeless people sleeping in one of the various boxes we've been moving around.

"So, a long time ago, our church use to have a third floor, and there was a stair case that could lead to that floor, but they sealed it off and put a wall where the door use to be to that staircase.” Teresa says opening a door letting in light, "Be careful, there is a bit of a drop." she says jumping down out of the tunnel place where we were. I follow her out and drop onto some steps.

"So... when you said the second floor was your favorite..."

"The third floor doesn't exist okay; you can't say anything about it. Aside from me, you are the only other person I know who knows about it."

"Huh." I say walking down the stairs and opening the door. Sure enough, behind the door was a solid concrete wall.

           I follow Teresa up the stairs to the third floor. She pauses and leans on a ledge looking out a window that shows the cars passing by on the highway. What a view. I wonder why the church closed off the third floor. They could use more room I'm sure. We enter the third floor, and there is a beautiful skylight that shines light to the floor, showing the dust of age and the beauty of what used to be. There were pews for a balcony, that seems to never have been used, and open spaces that might have been good spaces for offices.

"This place uses to be used for manual bell ringers, I'm guessing. I don't really know."

"Cool." I say looking around. There are some beautiful objects in here that seem so old.

"Follow me." Teresa says opening another closet door. But instead of having another tunnel, it had a ladder. A vertical ladder. If my lung wasn't dying already, it sure would be after this. I follow Teresa up the ladder onto a wooden platform. There were more steps upward to the ladder, but she said it was just the bells, and that I could see them later. She opens a small door level to the wooden floor and I could feel the burst of the outside air.

"Oh my gosh." I say. Teresa takes a step outside and I can feel the cold wind, which was so much stronger out here.

"C'mon." she says beckoning me over to her. I step out hesitantly and make my way next to her clinging to the side of the building. I sit next to her and she smiles, "Don't you like the view?"

"You do know we are sitting on a roof three stories high!" I exclaim exhausted.

"You get used to it." she says leaning back.

            You could see the parking lot and the children's playground down below. You could almost see over the trees of the woods. I wonder what there would be beyond the woods. Could it be worse there than it is here? I seriously doubt it. Anywhere would be better than here. Sometimes you can get so wrapped up in things where you are it is hard to believe there are worse things out there. Werewolves, spirits, things like that.

            My phone vibrates and I see another missed call from Scott. I hadn't noticed I'd missed so much. I didn't even think the guys knew I had gotten a new phone. I ignore the calls and the dozens of unread messages and return my phone into the pocket of my jacket.

            My phone buzzes yet again and I close my eyes annoyed.

"Aren't you going to get that?" Teresa asks looking at me. I open my eyes and face her.

"It's just Scott." I say.

"I know," she says, "but don't you think you should be helping them right now?"

"I could, but I don't feel like much help."

***

           Mr. Chasity gives me a ride home, going into another conversation about how he is Teresa and I am friends. It hurt to hear him say that. Probably because it was a reality only he knew to be true. Teresa and I know something different.

             At home, Rita is reading the paper, and Johnathon is sitting on the couch watching television. It was as if their roles had been reversed. I've been trying to ignore it, but there is clearly some change going on. Rita says hi while Johnathon seems absorbed in whatever show he is watching. Turns out he is watching nothing, just reading a book with the TV on. John never read a book in his life. The cover looked familiar. I've probably read the book before. When’s the last time I read an actually book?

***

"Hey, Aileen. Do you need a ride home?" Teresa asks, honking the horn on her father’s car to get my attention. School just ended and I was planning on walking, but with my lung, it'd be more of a burden.

"Would you mind?" I ask getting in the car, already knowing the answer. Mr. Chasity drives to my house, having a small conversation on the way, that which I am hardly a part of.

"Here we are." he says unlocking the doors for me to leave.

"Thank you for the ride."

"No problem."

            I walk into the house. Just walking in I knew things were wrong. It was just the feeling in the house. The entire feeling of the house, the comfort of home, just left. There are no harbingers, just dead air. Sometimes, that's all you really need to tell you what's wrong, no harbingers, just dead silence.

            Out of nowhere there is a clashing sound. Something in the kitchen. I walk and see... nothing. Everything seems to be in their place. The house is still so empty. But Johnathon's car is here. Where is he? I look around the corner to the dining room and I see Johnathon. I stood like a dumb person, confused. I saw the knife in his hand, and I put my arms up just in time for him to slash at my arm. I scream in pain instantly feeling the blood drip down one of my arms.

"Uncle Johnathon?" I question as he pins me to the ground. My head hits the floor hard and it takes me a minute to find my bearings. But in the moments I do, I could feel his hands wrap around my throat choking me. I struggle for breath. I couldn't scream, couldn't talk, or breathe. I wonder how long it takes for someone with one lung to die from strangulation. I pull all of my strength together to shove him off. I crawl away out of breath, trying to get to the door. To the exit, "Steven." my voice comes out hoarse.

           I haven't heard from Steven in so long. I start to wonder if he is dead, or if he is just lost somewhere. I call out for him. Again and again and again. I need his help. He saved me before. Maybe he can save me again.

"Come here you little bitch!"

            He grabs my hair pulling me into the living room before throwing me into the bookshelf. I get ready to fall but he holds me to the bookshelf. I try to hold him farther away from me with my good arm.

"Why?" I question. I am defenseless. Weak.

"Why?" he holds a book up to my face. Will's journal. The one that went into detail about the experiments my family did on me trying to figure out what I was. There is nothing wrong with me, I am human. I am human. Steven is what's wrong with me. He makes me anything but human, "You think I wouldn't find this? You think I didn't know this entire time?" he yells. I could feel his spit on my face.

            All I can do now is hold my breath.

"Why now, if you've known all along."

"Time to remember what you are." he says. he lets the knife draw blood on my chest. Opening up old wounds. Every cut made me cry out, wishing for the pain to stop. I would try to get away, but the more I tried, the worse it got. I was hopeless.

            The look in his eyes was just like my brothers. Both of them tried to kill me. If this is a way of history repeating itself, the outcome may be similar.

"Steven." I say, feeling his presence.

            I pull myself to the ground along with Johnathon, just in time to prevent a knife from going through his throat. Instead it lands in one of the books in the bookshelf. I could feel the objects around the room start to rattle, and pick themselves up, hovering in midair, trying to figure out where to go. Next thing you know there are dozens of objects attacking him, and I crawl away and the stitching in my wound rips open. John had a smug smile on his face.

"You missed," I say pulling the knife out of my side and get up, wobbling away. I hadn't even felt it happen.

"You fucking bastard." I hear Steven say before I get out the door. I turn back. I could see everything attacking John.

"STEVEN!" I yell running back, trying to get in between the two of them, but it didn't work.

            I felt Johnathon throw me into the coffee table, the glass shattering around me. I look up, the world spinning, and I try to get myself to focus. I look at John, multiple kitchen knives hugging him, as he sinks to the floor.

            Not again.

            I don't want to lose him too. I don't want to lose him too.

"What's going on here? Oh my god, Aileen!" Rita rushes toward me. Looking me over, "Where's John?"

           I lie. I have to lie, "I don't know." I keep myself on the floor, unable to move. I don't want to see what Rita is bound to see.

"John! John," Rita found him, "god no, John. John!" she searches around for the phone, "What happened." Rita says.

            I can only imagine how scared she is right now. How rattled she is from her trashed house. And all of the blood. Maybe John missed on purpose. He wanted to kill me, but he wanted me to stop him. He wanted me to stop him.

            I felt someone's arms wrap around me and pick me up. I felt the blood drip from my side onto the ground. It isn't Rita carrying me, she couldn't have. I struggle with the stranger and fall back onto the glass from the coffee table. I cringe at the pain and try to crawl away.

"Rita!" I scream as the stranger picks me up again and drags me along, "Rita!" she either couldn't hear me, or was too far away to get to where I was to see what was happening.

            The unknown person drags me outside. I tried to fight, but I wasn't strong enough, now that I was so hurt. I hear a smack, and the person holding me falls to the ground. That being said I fall to the ground as well. I groan in pain before being picked back up. I get carried into a vehicle, and end up in the back seat of a familiar car. I search my head to remember where I knew it from. Doing so made my head throb. But I did remember.

"Derek?" I question. There is no answer, "What is going on..." my eyes fell out of focus and I could feel the pull of sleep and darkness in the back of my head. I force my eyes to stay open as the vehicle stops and my door opens up, "Where... Steven," Derek drags me along the dirt and leaves me on the ground in a dark unknown place. I don't have the strength to move, but even if I did, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be able to leave.

           I scream. Over and over and over again. Trying to get attention of the world that has done this to me, that got rid of everyone I ever could have loved, taking my goodbyes, taking my company. Leaving me lonely. I screamed at the world that turned everyone I cared about against me and that left me here. At my lowest point. I screamed at the world that gave me Steven. I screamed at myself for letting this happen. I screamed at my weakness and misfortune, I screamed at my ignorance and stupidity. And when I was done screaming I cried. Until the tears I had ran out, and there was nothing left but emptiness inside of me. I was hollow. I was alone. I was falling further and further into the pit of mine, consumed by darkness. My soul was breaking. I was becoming what they always wanted me to be. Property. As my soul broke so did my mind. And I slowly felt all of reality slip away from me and understanding fall out from under my feet.

           What is loss? How is it so powerful? Why?

            I don't understand.

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