We sat on the couch, curled up in one another. It felt so natural now. No more hiding. "So I know you have a crush on Carlisle, and I am dying to know more." I looked at her, "I only know," Alice smirked, "He's older ok. 34. Born and raised in the heart of London. His father was a minister. He passed away when Carlisle was in medical school. I'm not too sure about his mom. That’s all I know about him.” Alice smiled, “He’s a cutie. Who care’s if he’s older. More experience.” She winked at me. I shook my head, desperate to ignore her sexual innuendo. “Oh Ez you need to relax. You’re so uptight.” I looked at her, “My husband died a few months ago. I’m not eager to jump into a relationship. He’s a nice looking guy.” Alice looked up at me, “So what about tonight then? What happened between us?” I sighed, “I don’t know right now. I just need to figure shit out.” Alice looked at me, “I’m sorry if I’m fucking your head up.” I wasn’t sure what was going on. Right now, I was not in a great frame of mind. She remained quiet, afraid of hurting my feelings, but she was just as confused as I was.
The next morning rolled around, and Alice was gone. A note was on the coffee table.
I decided to head out early. I needed to get home, and get some things done. Coffee is already to go for you. Make sure you eat. We’ll catch up later. I love you, and don’t forget that.
I grabbed my phone, checking for texts from Alice. There was a text from Steve,
What’s going on??? Get back to me asap!!!!
Oh man, what happened. I texted back quickly.
Hey just woke up. What’s going on?
My phone vibrated, and lit up.
You’ve not seen the news???
I grabbed the remote, and flipped on the television. The news anchor spoke,
Yes Sarah, were standing in front of the King County Courthouse. Judge Mark Baker has released, Charles Kingston on his own personal recognizance just now. He’s been ordered to stay away from Esme Gutherie, until the next court date scheduled for January 3.
There he was on the screen, walking free. Walking fucking free. Just a piece of paper ordering him to stay away from me. My phone vibrated again, another new message, Mom.
Call me now!
I unlocked my phone, and replied.
Not calling. Nothing to say. I’m fine.
I hit send, and tossed my phone on the coffee table, and slummed through the house. I stopped being torn on the cup of coffee that I wanted, and my bed upstairs. I slumped into the kitchen, and flipped on the coffee pot, and leaned against the counter, closing my eyes. I rested with my back against the counter, gripping the edge to keep myself up.
I closed my eyes, and it started. I could hear him breathing heavy, the warmth of his breath on my neck, my mouth, my breasts. I could feel his weight on me. The pain started in my head, and it throbbed. My desperate pleas for him to stop, echoed through my head. "Mmm Esme you feel as good as I remember. Look at me as I make love to you." I whimpered, "Get off of me. Please." I could hear the thud of my head hitting the asphalt of the parking lot. My nose was running, and tears were streaming down my cheeks. Grunt, grunt, grunt. Ice ran through my veins, as the nausea rocked my body, like a ship facing a turbulent storm. My heart was racing, and I felt like I may pass out. I tried to grab the house phone. I hit the button for my mom. It rang, then I was sucked back into darkness. "Hello? Esme? Harry she's not answering me."
I stirred, slowing regaining consciousness. "Her pulse is 73. She's breathing normally again." I felt something cold on my neck, and something damp on my forehead. I tried to sit up. "Hey don't move ok. Your dad and I are here." I whimpered, feeling the thudding in my head resume. "Where am I?" My mom stoked my cheek, "You're in your room. I couldn't get a response from you, so we raced over." I heard the floor creak, "Your mom called me. I got here and let myself in." Steve's voice was near the corner of the room. "I just relived it. I felt him again." My mom sighed, "That's a flashback, and you had a panic attack as well. So what it's clinical diagnosis is, PTSD. I'm only suggesting, you speak to Rosalie McCartney. This could happen when you're driving." I reared up knowing sadly, she was absolutely correct.
The remainder of the afternoon was quiet. I drifted in and out of sleep. My mom stayed by my side, leaving only to use the bathroom. "Elizabeth dinner." My dad brought of a tray. He'd made grilled cheese sandwiches, and wedding soup from scratch. I have one for her, but thought she needed her sleep." My mom set down her book, and took the tray, "Thank you Hun. We're staying the night. I can't leave her like this." My dad nodding agreeing, "I set up the guest room for us." My mom smiled, and started to eat her dinner.
I woke up in the middle of the night, frantically searching the bed, "Scott? Scott where are you." I quickly threw the covers back, and went to Amy's room, and it was empty. A hand touched my shoulder, "Whoa, relax. You were yelling. Let's get you back to bed Hun." My dad guided me back to bed, and I laid down. "You know I first met Scott at the ice rink. We shared a kiss. He and I lost contact." Then we met again at Starbucks. He just found me. So why have I lost him now.” He covered me up, “We have to lose things, in order to realize how much they meant to us. One day, you’ll find someone who’ll be a new part of you. They’ll never replace the loss, but help you heal.” He kissed my forehead, and smiled, “Sleep hun.” He shut the door, and returned to the spare room. I laid there, and held onto the pillow. I thought nightmares were supposed to stop when you were a child. I never truly thought I would experience one as an adult. Especially one that lingered.
The next morning, I woke up. There sitting in my bedroom was a beautiful blond. She wore a grey pants, and jacket suit. Her shirt was a sapphire blue. Her hair was done nicely, and tucked up. Her lips were painted with a soft pink. Her nails matched. She smiled, “Hi there. Don’t worry, your mom called me. I was hoping we could talk?” I sat up, and rubbed my head. “I’m sorry I’ve not made an appointment with you.” She shrugged, crossing her legs, “No need to apologize. You didn’t feel ready. Taking the first step, is making an appointment.” I sighed, “I had a flashback, and then it sparked a full blown panic attack.” She just nodded, and placed her hands on the arms of the chair. “Care to tell me what happened?” I swallowed back the tears, “I relived it.” She nodded again, “Like you were there?” I nodded. “Could you feel him? Smell him? Hear him?” I nodded, “The headache as well.” She reached down into her bag, and pulled out a legal pad, and a pen. Her hand started moving swiftly across the piece of paper. “Just taking some notes; if that’s alright.” I shrugged, “It has to be if I’m going to be seeing you.” She looked at me, “You’re under no obligation to see me.” I rubbed my eyes, “I am under an obligation. What if this happened while I was driving?” She set her pen down, “It could have been bad. Look at it this way though, you weren’t. Now I’m here, and were talking.” She was right. For two hours we spoke. She wrote me a prescription for Ativan, and upped my dosage. She also wanted to meet with me in a week. I was told to call if I had any other issues. Before she left, she looked at me, “If you feel at any point like hurting yourself, call me. I don’t care what the hour is.” I looked at her, and agreed.
After she’d left, I curled back up in my bed. I stayed buried under my comforter. I had no desire to get up today. I dozed off, and let security of my blanket hold me. When I came around again, I was disoriented. After a few minutes of laying there, I heard the creak at the top of the stairs. "She's resting Hun. You can go lay with her." Alice came in, and slipped her shoes off. She pulled the covers back, and slid into bed with me. I looked over my shoulder at her. "Hi baby. I'm staying with you. I've packed enough for a week." I turned in her arms, and faced her. She brought her hand up, gently stroking my cheek moving a strand of hair from my face. Her warm brown eyes twinkled, but were worried. "I love you, no matter what you choose." She kissed me softly on the forehead. "I love you." I whispered. She smiled, "I love you too sweetie." The soft relaxing sound of her humming, let me fall back asleep.
I finally woke up and it was 5:47pm according to the clock. Alice was watching the news. I heard them taking about the weather. Then it was as if the tv was turned up, "Up next on the 6:00 o'clock news. We have an update Michael Deluca's upcoming court appearance in December." I groaned, "Just kill him. Better yet, take away something he loves. God knows they won't revoke his license. He'll probably get manslaughter charges. A slap on the wrist. He's so young, he didn't know better. That's what they'll say." Alice played with my hair, "We'll see what the news says." So we waited.
The music started again, and dramatic opening music. The announcers voice thundered through the speakers. "Tonight a decision is made, while lawyers try to contest the charges brought against their client." I moved so my head rested on Alice's lap. "Michael Deluca's lawyer tried to plead that he was mentally unstable when the accident occurred. They claim that he's a great kid. He had just graduated college, and was going through some personal issues. They claim that he took a prescribed medication, that claimed to have had no warnings about alcohol consumption causing any adverse reactions. The Prosecutors showed the jury in fine print, where it's high suggested not to take this medication with alcohol. After only thirty minutes, the jury came back with a guilty verdict. Michael Deluca will be charged with two counts of manslaughter. Sentencing will be in February." I swallowed, "Hope he enjoys awaiting his fate. The freedom he has." Alice stroked my hair, "Baby I'm here."
We stayed there quietly. No words were exchanged. She knew I wasn’t in a good place. I knew she cared, so much more then words could express. “I know you’re absolutely disgusted. You’ve not said a word. Scott wouldn’t want you holding anger. He’d want you trying. Holding onto bitter, negative feelings will only crush whom you are. You’re allowed to be angry, sad, whatever it may be. Please don’t wish anything ill upon him.” My breathing was steady, and regular, “Alice, I don’t know what to feel. I’m not God, there for I can not cast judgement. I’m entitled to my opinion. My opinion is this child, is a selfish one at that. He doesn’t want to take responsibility for his deadly decision. He is hoping to get probation, community service, rehab. He’ll come up with any excuse to get out of his punishment. What about the others who were punished because of his disgustingly poor decisions? I won’t accept an apology from him, nor his family. I will be there when he’s sentenced. Swear to God, on my life. I will be there when his life is decided for him.” She leaned down, and kissed my forehead again, “I know you will be. I will be beside you holding your hand the whole time.” With that said, I finally emerged, and went downstairs to have dinner.