Eucatastrophe ~ h.s.

This isn't how I planned any aspect of my life to occur.

The plan was simple: Finish university with a 4.0 GPA, Get a well-paying corporate job that's more intense than the assistant job I've now, Find a man that loves me for me, Get married at a gorgeous ceremony, Have beautiful children, Grow old with the man of my dreams and watch our kids mature right before our eyes, and Then fall deeper and deeper in love with our time together.

That Night wasn't supposed to happen. My life wasn't supposed to turn out like this.

*Contains: Language, mild sexual content, and a bit of violence. Content could be triggering for some.*

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4. ✗ three ✗

SHAY

The Present ~ 22 April

Shay you have to open your eyes. I don't care how much pain you are in right now; you just need to try.

My eyelids feel like rocks, unable to move up and down to see what's going on around me. It isn't that I don't want to open my eyes and look around; it's just that I can't. My entire body aches and there's this sickening feeling that comes from my stomach, to the point where I just want to turn over and vomit the contents out onto the streets. There's this taste on my tongue that I can't quite point my finger on, like old cigarettes and filth, and this numb, painful feeling coming from my lower half.

I force myself to stay completely still for a moment, listening to the things around me just in case I'm not alone. But I hear nothing but the wind and my own breathing coming out in ragged pants. I am completely alone.

I'm met with darkness when I open my eyes, with a bit of light coming from the end of the alleyway. Oh no. It takes everything in me to move my body when I begin hearing things around me clank and clatter, though the sounds are only coming from my head; I just know it. I sit up against the pain and look down.

My body has been dragged over to the edge of one of the brick buildings and behind a dumpster so that it can't be so easily seen. My expensive dress is torn in various places, blood covering some of the material that still hangs on my body. I gasp at the sight, tears welling in my eyes and blurring my vision.

No. No. Oh God no!

That had actually happened. That man dragging me into this alleyway was no nightmare or hallucination, it is completely and utterly reality. As I sit frozen against the cold wall the thought sinks in and more tears pile up. I burst into the salty tears when I see my legs and what is pooled at my feet.

Looking around I search for my bag, which contains my phone and everything else I need in a moment like this. I need to go home and that's the only way it's going to happen if I have my phone and Id. But it's not around me, in fact beside me in the alley is just garbage. The man has taken it from me like he has taken my innocence.

You need to get out of here and get home, my brain screams though I know I need help. I really want nothing more than to curl up in a ball and take a nice, long, hot shower to wash away what feels like the dirtiest skin I have ever worn than to face anyone or anything around me. But my home is too far away.

If you can't get home, go to a friend. Go to someone who can help you. You have to know someone around here. Or maybe just stumble into the city and get help.

As much as I want to stay away from anyone that can judge me and how I look right now, I know I have to in fear that the man will come back or worse I will die here alone.

As quickly as I can I stand onto my bare feet, not bothering with finding my shoes in this filthy alley. I pull up my knickers without a second thought and start to run as fast as I can with aching appendages and fear. I feel like I can run for miles without having to stop as long as it gets me as far away from that alley and strangers as possible. Somehow the adrenaline in my body keeps me moving until I reach his home, which is only minutes away from my location.

The exterior of his large home is quiet, meaning that everyone has left the party. How late is it? How long was I out? Had he left me for dead? Without another thought I run up the steps, almost collapsing at the top as I bang on my boss' door. For all I knew he could be in bed, though the lights on the ground level are still lit.

"Harry!"

My voice comes out in a croak and it feel like I haven't spoken in months. Tears pour out of my eyes and onto my swollen and stinging cheeks. I don't know what my face looks like, but from the stinging it can't be good. I use every ounce of strength in my arms to bang on his door and every ounce of bravery I have to face someone after what has just happened. My mind feels fuzzy and not one of my actions makes sense.

"What?" The door flies open harshly and there stands Harry. His features soften when he sees me, before they grow incredibly unreadable. "Shay, what happened?" I shake my head, taking a step towards the interior of the house so I am no longer outside alone.

"Close the door." I sob, my voice echoing throughout his home. Harry immediately steps out of the way and closes the door behind me. "Lock it, lock it, lock it!" I screech, as if who ever did this to me followed me here. Harry does as I say. A sigh of relief leaves my lips as I am finally somewhere familiar.

"Shay?"

I shuffle past him as he takes in my looks. I can see his eyes racking my body as he slowly sets the glass of whiskey he is holding down onto a table in his foyer.

"Help me." I croak out in a whisper as I raise my eyes to meet his. "Please, help me." Harry's eyes scan me once more before nearly bugging out of his head.

"Shay, you're bleeding!" He exclaims, rushing towards me. I look down at my legs to see a line of blood trickling down one of my thighs, the source hidden by the fabric of my ripped dress. I feel Harry's hand on my shoulder and that's all it takes for me to collapse tiredly against him. And for the second time tonight I loose the authority to control my own body.

^^^

HARRY

I have never witnessed so much fear in someone's eyes until I saw Shay earlier this morning. I was finishing off a phone call and a late night alcoholic beverage when it all when down.

"Louis, it's too late for this." His late night calls will be the death of me, especially these that occur when he has had too much to drink. Right now is one of those incidents. "We spoke less than two hours ago at the party, remember?"

"I remember being there Harold, you don't have to remind me." He says laughing loudly. He gets this way when he drinks too much. "I also remember that cheeky little number you just had to introduce us to as your personal assistant tonight. Got something to prove by having a hotter assistant than ours mates?" I roll my eyes and bring my hand up to my forehead, massaging the skin there.

"Louis." I warn, not wanting to hear it tonight.

"What? She is proper fit compared to ours. Niall's assistant barely speaks any English, how he communicates with her is beyond me. Liam's is chunky, which isn't necessarily a bad thing if she had a nice face and maybe a tolerable personality, but she has neither so..." His voice trails off into silence and I swear I hear ice moving around in a glass, meaning he's still drinking. "Ashton doesn't even have an assistant, something about not needing any help because of his independence, whatever the fuck that means. Luke's assistant is just plain ugly as hell and looks down upon everyone around like she's the fucking Queen of England."

"You love the queen." I remind him, swirling my drink around in my glass as I wait him to finish his drunken conversation.

"And my assistant, well, my assistant is a fucking dude!" I can't help but laugh at his rant about assistants.

"I'm not having this conversation about my assistant. She's a nice girl who works hard-"

"And she's hot!" I breathe out slowly and nod to myself. She is very attractive, but I don't just enjoy her company because of her looks. That would make me a bad person. As soon as I open my mouth to speak on behalf of my assistant, someone begins banging harshly on my front door. At first I ignore it, thinking that it's some stupid teenager with too much time on his hands. But whoever it is is persistent as fuck and is shouting for me to open up.

"Louis, I gotta go, someone's at my door."

"But we're not done talking about Shay-" And with that I hang up and swing the door open. "What?" I roar tiredly not wanting to face anyone else for the rest of the night, granted it is half two in the morning, but you know what I mean.

Speaking of Shay.

Shay is standing here barefoot and in a ripped dress with makeup, dried blood, and tears streaming down her reddened and swollen face. I immediately freeze up. I almost drop my phone onto the floor in shock, never having seen her this way before. "Shay, what happened?" I immediately ask once my mouth learns how to move again. She shakes her head, tears streaming down her trembling face before she pushes past me into my home.

"Close the door." She pleads, my actions following her words though I'm still very much in shock.

"Shay?" I try again, setting my glass onto the small table at the side of the room. She looks around the room frantically as if searching for somebody else to be standing here. Every appendage shakes with some sort of fear that I'm not aware of and in her state I don't know what to think.

"Help me." I nod my head when her bloodshot eyes met mine, not knowing what else to do. I need to call the police and an ambulance. There's blood around the cuts in her dress as well as her forehead, but when I see the blood dripping from underneath her dress I freak out.

"Shay, you're bleeding!" I exclaim in shock, rushing over to her side. She looks down at where I'm pointing and a sob breaks through her lips again before collapsing back into my arms. Thankfully I'm right behind her or she would've ended up on the ground.

When she collapses in my arms, I'm sure I had had a heart attack. I had never been so freaked out in my entire life.

I have known Shay for the past three and a half years of my life. She's my assistant, yes, but I also think of her as my friend; one of my closest friends in fact, though we never "hang out" outside of work. She keeps me going, even when work is tough and I want nothing more than to give up. I have never let her know how special she is to me. So upon seeing her in this broken state I nearly lose my mind.

&&&

"Mr. Styles?" In a rush, I snap out of my nightmares and stand from the uncomfortable hospital chair to meet eyes with a doctor, slightly older than I, with concern etched over her face. When I see that look I know it can't be good, the news she brings. I tried to get her here in time, but by time I carried her in the front doors of the hospital, she was completely out. I have been waiting in complete silence ever since, for over four hours.

"Is she alright?" I barely manage to ask, for fear of the answer I may get. I saw Shay differently than I had ever seen her before.

"She's conscious and stable." I breathe for what feels like the first time in hours at her words. My mind keeps going worse case scenario. "We're testing her as we speak."

"Testing her for what? What exactly happened? Is she going to be okay? Can I see her?" I ask quickly, feeling my heart race in my chest and my palms begin to sweat. I have a pretty good idea of what had happened, but I don't want to think too much about it without it making me feel sick to my stomach.

"Are you family?"

"No, not exactly. She's my assistant and-"

"I'm sorry, sir, but if you're not family then I can't tell you much of anything or let you see her." I shake my head at the thought of standing here in the dark any longer or leaving Shay all alone. I don't care if Shay hits me later for what I'm about to do, or rather say, she will have to thank me in the long run.

"She's my fiancée as well." I lie. The doctor cocks her eyebrow at me, clearly not buying into my lie in the slightest. "Yes, Shay is my fiancée, we've only been engaged for a few days so that's why I must have forgotten to mention it before." I lie through my teeth, hoping to persuade her in the least. The doctor looks around at the nearly empty waiting room before sighing heavily and motioning with her head towards the hallway to our left. I follow her in suit, saying nothing in fear she will tell me to go back to the waiting room.

"You can't see her yet." She says once we stop in the quiet and empty hallway. I open my mouth to argue with her, but she shushes me. "And I need you to remain calm for what I have to say next." I have a feeling her news is bad if she wants to distance me from anyone that can potentially see me freak out. I nod my head, trying to assure her that I can say calm; although I don't know if I can. "It appears that Shay was raped earlier tonight."

And that is when my heart stops beating. I'm sure it has stopped beating and then completely snapped in half. I'm also sure that my jaw is lying on the ground with the pieces of my shattered heart. I don't care if I have known Shay for three years or three days. I can't stand the thought of that happening to any girl, but especially my girl.

"There was significant damage to her-"

This honestly can't be happening right now. It's what I fear had happened when I saw the blood, but wouldn't let myself think about until I knew for sure. Now that I know for sure I definitely don't want to think about it.

"Who the fuck did it?" I ask angrily as if she has all the answers on her handy clipboard. Clearly, my promise to remain calm has flown out the window, or it's on the ground with my jaw and pieces of my broken heart.

"We don't know. The police are standing by to question her when we finish our tests."

"Testing for what?" I spit, my patients growing thin. "You clearly already know what's wrong with her, so why all of the testing. She needs to rest, not sit through tests that won't even help her now." The doctor steps forward, placing a hand on my arm. I flinch lightly but quickly recover.

"I'm so sorry sir. But that's all I can tell you right now." She says, taking a deep breath. "For now you need to go back to the waiting room and I will tell Shay you're here. Okay?" I stare down at her with my jaw clenched tightly and nodded my head.

Who ever did this was going to pay for what he had done.

^^^

SHAY

After hours of being questioned and tested for a bunch of things I didn't even understand, I'm allowed to rest in quiet. The sun is up now and I have spent the entire night in agonizing pain until I was given pain medication for what I was feeling. My doctor hadn't said much beside what test they were going to do, but aside from that I didn't hear her. I barely even heard the detectives, but I know in order to find who did this I had to tell them everything, so I did.

When they had all finished, my doctor said that my fiancé was waiting for me out in the waiting room. She added that he was persistent and wouldn't leave no matter what she told him. I knew exactly whom she was talking about, and I wasn't even mad that he told her we were engaged. I was just glad someone was here for me in the moment.

And as soon as I am finally alone I begin to cry again.

I begin to cry for how stupid I am to actually walk alone late at night. I cry for how much pain I'm in. I cry for not being able to protect myself as well as the entire ordeal. I cry for the fact that I'm even in this position, with my boss of three years as the person I had run to. It's humiliating, another reason for my tears.

A knock at the door sounds, drawing me from the tearful gaze at my lap. A chubby woman peeks her head in and I want nothing more than to tell her off and have some peace and quiet. Then I see who's behind her.

"Knock, knock, love. You're fiancé is here to see you." I nod my head and continue to let the tears drip down my cheeks for I am too lazy to wipe them away or discard them as fake. The woman steps out of the way and lets Harry in before shutting the door behind him.

My eyes avoid him instantly, going back to their spot at my lap. I can't bear to look him in the eyes now, not after what happened. It isn't that I don't want him here; in fact he's the only person that's here for me. Not even my parents can be bothered that I'm here. I am just beyond embarrassed and humiliated.

"Hey Shay." He says slowly, walking further into the room until he's beside my bed. His low voice somehow begins to calm my ragging nerves, making the anxiety of the situation lessen. I don't say anything to him; just remain staring at my lap so I won't have to look at him. "Uh, our meeting got cancelled this afternoon, in case you were wondering." I can't help the slightest of a sad smile creeping to my lips. Harry knows that no matter what I am always worrying about work. "But you shouldn't be worrying about work right now, okay?" I nod my head in acknowledgement, letting him know that I'm listening. "Do you want to tell me what happened?" I shake my head, tired of having to tell the same story over and over. I just want to forget. "That's okay. I didn't mean to push it." I stare blankly at my lap, just thinking, for the longest time.

"Y-you're going to have to get M-Melissa to take over my position t-today and make sure C-Cameron u-understands that his reports are due on your d-desk by the end of today. Y-you also need to make sure that s-someone sets up a real a-appointment with Mr. Francis." I cry out, my voice wavering as I speak. Harry takes a step closer to my hospital bed, shushing me lightly.

"Hey, you don't need to be worrying about work right now." I nod my head, pulling my gaze from my lap so that I'm now staring at his hand that rests beside my leg. I intently watch the cross tattoo there, finding it oddly comforting. "You just need to worry about yourself and work on getting better." I nod my head again, reaching my hands up to wipe away the evidence of tears. "And that's an order Shay."

"O-okay." I say in a whisper, bringing my head up so that I can look at him for the first time since passing out last night.

He's still wearing the same suit that he had on at the party, only now the tie is gone, the top few buttons are undone, and there are red stains covering the white shirt. I know those stains to be one thing, my crimson blood. His perfectly styled hair is no longer that, just messily hanging onto his shoulders. He has dark circles under his eyes and I can't tell if it's from being hungover or just out of exhaustion.

"Shay?"

"Y-yeah?" I croak out lightly. I really just want to be alone.

"Do you want anything to eat?" I shake my head. I have no appetite what so ever, and I don't think I ever will. "How about some water?" I shake my head again. I just want him to go so that I can be alone in silence.

"I j-just want to s-sleep." I admit in a whisper.

"Okay, then I'll just go sit over there." He says, pointing to a chair near the end of my bed. The thought was nice, but I honestly don't want him to be in here whilst I am unconscious. I know he will never try anything, but I have to be certain.

"No!" I say once he's halfway to the chair. "C-can you just leave?" I ask, my words harsher than my tone. Harry looks back at me in confusion.

"Shay, I don't think you should be alone-"

"Mr. Styles, I-I a-appreciate you being here and b-bringing me here l-last night, but you d-don't have to do a-any of this. Thank you for w-what you did, but you s-should just go to work and l-leave me be." I say, dropping my head back against the pillows beneath my head.

"I'm not going to do that."

"Please." I beg, the tears springing to my eyes again. "Please, just go."

"Shay, I'm not leaving you-"

"Just go, God damnit!" I snap, my heart rate increasing. I have never lost my temper around him, though sometimes I wish I had. "Please, Mr. Styles, just leave m-me alone. I'll be fine." Harry stares back at me, not fazed in the least by my harsh tone.

"Do you want me to get you anything or call anyone?" I look over at him with silent, pleading eyes hoping he will just get the message and leave. "Okay,I'll go. But if you need anything I'll be here as soon as I can." He says,pursing his lips together and nodding once at me before leaving me to wallow in self-pity    

 

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