Quinn is just about ready to finish her senior year of high school with her best friend by her side. She's been accepted into her school of choice. If only her mother would just let go. There's no escape for Quinn except the ones she makes herself. She and self-harm have always been very close and she's kept this to her self for a long time. Then there's Trent a mysterious boy who she seems to see everywhere. He learns of her secret and still by some miracle which Quinn can't see, Trent falls for her being her first everything, Quinn starts to feel the same. Will Quinn make it to college or will her abusive mother keep her for her self? Can Trent save her? Can Quinn save her own life and keep moving forward?


1. 1

The final bell rang and the halls erupt into chaos just like every other Friday in this hell hole. Only two more weeks and I’ll be out of here. I’m going to the University of California to study criminal justice and I can’t wait to leave. I’ll finally be far away from my dysfunctional family and this horrible town. Graduation can't come soon enough. As I walk to my locker I see the one person I will miss Everest, Eve for short. She's running toward me with a huge smile plastered on her face. She stops nearly crashing into me as I stand at my locker.

"Jesus Eve, slow down what the hell's going on?"

"You'll never believe what just happened! Go ahead and guess! I bet you'll never get it. Come on Quinn, can't you be excited about anything?" Eve was so out of breath I could barely keep up as she spoke.

"Okay, okay I give up. What's going on why are you so excited?" I tried grabbing on to her shoulders to try and keep her from bouncing around anymore that she already was. She started talking about some random guys on the football team; I wasn't listening just nodding along. Then I saw him just standing in the middle of the hall way, staring at us. I thought for sure he must have been looking at Eve. I mean come on, she's gorgeous. Long legs, blonde hair, flat stomach she is everything that's considered beautiful in high school. Every guy here wants her. We couldn’t be more different. I'm not saying I'm not attractive or anything like that. I would say I'm average. My hair is cut into a sleek bob, dyed a deep shade of red only noticeable in the sun. I'm not overweight but I'm not thin either. I'm just kind of there I guess. There’s just nothing spectacular about me. I take my eyes off him and try to give me attention back to Eve. I look up for just a second and I don't see him anywhere. I let out a sigh of relief. I closed my locker just as Eve was finishing her story.

"So, long story short that's how I got us invited to the biggest party of the year!" She was jumping up and down again. I tried to look happy about it but I had no idea what the fuck she was talking about.

"You know parties really aren't my thing, Eve. Can we do something else tonight?" I could tell she was disappointed. She gave me those big puppy dog eyes and tried again. "Come on Quinn, you haven’t been to a party all year! I really like this guy, please say you'll come with me.” Her eyes were full of hope so I finally said I would go. "YES! Thank you so much Quinn! You won't regret it I promise. Oh, by the way I hear that new kid is gonna be there. The one you're always talking about, what's his name?" To be honest I had no idea what his name was. So I just shrugged my shoulders.

               We walked to Eve's locker together. Once we got there she started digging through her backpack, I scanned the hallway. Why am I looking for him? What the hell is wrong with me? Finally I close my eyes and shake my head to clear his image from my mind. I open my eyes there he is, he's standing not three feet away from me. I jump back and hit the lockers in surprise.

"Jesus dude you scared the shit out of me. What the hell's wrong with you? You can't just sneak up on people like that!" My heart is racing at this point; my face is burning with embarrassment. He's so close I could touch him.

"My bad, I didn't mean to startle you. I was just wondering if you were going to Ben's party tonight. It seems that everyone and their mother are going." He cracked a smile and tilted his head slightly to the right. I couldn't take my eyes off his lips. I tore my gaze from him and dropped my eyes to the floor.

"Yeah, we'll be there unfortunately." Eve nudged me and gave me a smile. I tried to smile back but nothing happened.

"Great! Well I'll see you later, Quinn." The way he said my name took my breath away. How did he know my name? He must be in a class with me and I just didn't notice. Yeah, that has to be it.  Eve and I make our way to my car and hug goodbye. I say I'll text her in a little while. After I get home and she can give me more details about when and where this party is. She waves and jogs off to her car. I get in the driver’s seat and start the car. As I put it in gear I heard a tap on my window. I look over to see him again. I feel like my heart is in my throat. I roll the window down his scent fills my nostrils I look up at him and he smiles at me.

"Hey Quinn, I know this is weird but can I ask you a favor?"

"Uh, yeah what do you need?"

"I need a lot of things, but right now in this very moment I need a ride." He leans down a little farther so that he can look into my eyes and smiles. I could feel my face turning pink as he waited for my response.

"Yeah, I mean I guess I can give you a ride. Get in."

"Awesome thanks so much!" With that he slid across the front of my car and was in the passenger’s seat before I could blink. I asked him to put on his seat belt and we were off. I had no idea where I was going or if this was even a good decision. After a few minutes I finally spoke.

"So where are we going? Also how do you know my name or what car I drive for that matter?" I didn't mean to sound standoffish that's just how it came out. I was so nervous I just didn't know how to act around him. He looked a little surprised and shook his head.

"Well, Quinn I've been in your homeroom this whole year. I see you leave most days since we park near each other. My car is in the shop today hence the ride. As for where we're going, that's completely up to you. I just can't go home right now. You can drop me off where ever you'd like."

"Why can't you go home? Is everything okay?" I don't know why I cared that much I mean so what were in the same homeroom, I still don't know who the hell this kid is. I tried to focus on the road while he shifted in his seat to face me.

"Nah, everything's good I just need to be away for a bit. So where are we going Miss. Quinn?" He laughed and smiled that crooked smile at me, head tilted to the side. I forced a smile back and looked back to the road.

"We can go back to my place if you want. I've got some homework to finish up then I guess I have to get ready for that party."

"Sweet sounds good to me."

               We drove the rest of the way to my house in silence. Mostly because of me, he tried to start conversations and I would just nod or give him short answers. I just needed to get out of the car. I didn't know what he was doing to me but I couldn't handle being that close to him. He finally stopped talking and just looked out the window until we got to my house. I got out of the car and waited for him to follow me. When he didn’t I was confused, I walked back towards the car.

"Are you coming or what?"

"Is anyone home? Are you going to get in trouble for having me here or anything?" He seemed genuinely concerned about it. I walked over to his door and pulled it open.

"You'll be the first person I've ever brought here other than Eve. I'm sure if anyone were home, which is unlikely, they would be more shocked than mad that you were here. Let’s go." I knew my mom wouldn’t be home for hours. She never gets in before midnight. He got out of the car and seemed really excited for some reason. We walked up to the front door and as I put the key in I could feel how close he was to me and I fumbled with the lock. He put his hand around mine and unlocked the door. I pushed through the door to try and get away from him. When he touched me it felt like an electric shock. He looked at me like I was crazy and closed the door behind him. He asked if I was okay. I just nodded my head and led him into the kitchen. I got myself a glass of water and sat down at the table. He sat across for me and just looked at me. I couldn't meet his gaze. I looked down at my water and didn't say a word.

"Is there some reason you don't like to look at me?" My head shot up at his question. I looked at him. I mean really looked at him. His hair was dirty blonde, shaggy across the top of his head. His eyes the most beautiful shade of emerald green I had ever seen. His lips were full and slightly parted waiting for my answer. There was something dark about him. It was in his eyes, burning into my skin. I looked away again before I spoke.

"I don't know I guess you're just intimidating to me. It's not like I have guys chasing me down just to talk to me or hangout or whatever it is that we're doing here." My face flushed again and I looked up at him from beneath my bangs before looking back at my glass. He smiled at me a little knowing smile and nodded. He reached his hand out and touched my chin, inching my face upward.

"When you talk to me, I want you to look at me. You have my full attention and I want you to know that you do. Guys may not be chasing you down but I have been for weeks. I think that you’re interesting. I want to know you, everything about you. I'm not some random guy just trying to get off, okay?" I pulled my face from his hand stood up.

"I'll believe it when I see it. Come on, my desk is up here." I motioned to the stairs; I don't know what I was thinking inviting him upstairs like that. He followed me, a few steps behind but still he was close enough for me to know he hadn't wondered off. We passed my parents room, which was empty of course, took a left at the end of the hallway and came to my door. As we walked through my doorway I made my way towards my desk and put my book bag around the back of the chair. Now this is the part where I would normally change to get more comfortable. With him in my room I didn’t know what to do.

“Uh, I’m going to change do you mind?” I looked over to where he had parked himself which just happened to be on the end of my bed. He smiled and turned around.

“Just pretend I’m not here. Don’t worry I won’t peak, that’s not my style.” He laughed and I got changed as quickly as I possibly could. I told him he could turn around. When he did he just looked me up and down with a smile. Then his face grew concerned and dark. He looked disappointed somehow. He got up and walked towards me. I tried to back up but my wall wouldn’t swallow me.  “Quinn? What’s on your thigh there?” Shit, why did I opt for shorts? What was I thinking? I knew exactly what he was talking about. I panicked and picked up the closest pair of sweats I had and pulled them over my shorts. I looked up at him, my eyes pleading for him not to ask. He grabbed my wrist and pulled me towards the bed.

“Seriously Quinn, what the fuck is that?” He pulled me down to sit on the bed. He stood over me and asked to see my leg. I didn’t know what to say so I didn’t say anything. I just looked at the floor and hoped that he would drop the subject. With that he was on his knees in front of me. He gripped the elastic of my pants looking me dead in the eyes, he started to pull.

“Please, don’t do that.” My voice was shaking my hands grabbed his. He loosened his grip but he didn’t let go.

“Just show me.  I’m not going to tell or judge you or anything. Like I said downstairs, I want to know everything. Look at me Quinn.” I looked at him, my eyes started to water. He wiped my tears and asked again. I was mad at myself, at him for even bothering to try to understand. I stood up so fast he couldn’t keep his balance. Before I knew what I was doing I was pulling my pants down to my ankles. My thighs bare other than the evidence of my self-harm.

“There are you happy now?” I stood there shaking in anger. I don’t know what I was thinking. I’ve never told or showed anyone this part of my life before not even Eve. His eyes were open wide as he moved closer to me. He stretched out his arm inching towards my fresh wounds. I stepped around him. He stood up and glared at me.

“Stop is Quinn. Come back over here, now.” His voice was so stern I felt my legs moving me closer and couldn’t stop. Once I was in front of him he looked me dead in the eyes, when I tried to look away he sat me back down on the bed. “Quinn? Look at me. Everything’s okay. I’m going to touch your leg now. That looks pretty bad, it might be infected.” He knelt down and as he moved his fingers across my old scars I jumped. He looked up at me and continued exploring. “Don’t you bandage these? This one could get really infected, Quinn. What were you thinking?” He rushed off to my adjoining bathroom and found a first aid kit. He brought it back to the bed and sat down next to me. “Quinn, can you look at me please? I’m just trying to help.” His voice trailed off. He started to fumble with the lock on the first aid kit. I took it from him and threw it across the floor.

“There’s nothing in there since the lock is busted. I didn’t ask for your help. Maybe you should just go; I can take care of this myself. Jesus Christ, I don’t even know your name and here you are in my room trying to patch me up.” I was mad and my voice showed it. I was yelling and I didn’t even notice. I got off the bed and made my way towards the door. He grabbed my hand and pulled me back. I landed hard against his chest. He wrapped his arms around me and wouldn’t let go.

“My name is Trent.” That was it, nothing else. He loosened his grip and pulled himself away from me. He walked out of my room with his head hung low. He left the door open behind him. I heard the front door open and close. I peeked out of my window to see where he was, he was on the phone. He looked back up at my window and made his way down the driveway where a car pulled over and pick him up. 

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