Chapter 26 | Twinkle Toes
“Shane Teller, you say that you saw Jared Winston physically assault Addilyn Bishop?” My lawyer asks Shane who is still at the stand.
“Yes, as soon as I got the bedroom door open, I saw Jared’s fist connect with Addilyn’s face as she fell backwards.” Shane answers.
“Did you speculate that Ms. Bishop had attacked Jared first?” My lawyer asks.
“Absolutely not. I know Addilyn and who she is as a person, she would never lay a hand on anyone.” Shane answers.
I smile at his reply.
“So after you went after Jared for hitting Addilyn, you saw Addilyn run out of the room?”
“And Jared pushed you away and followed her out?”
“Then you saw Mr. Winston about to hit Addilyn for a second time, but you were able to stop it?” My lawyer asks.
“Yes, I jumped in front of her to protect her and I was able to hit Jared first before he hit Addilyn again. It was nothing more than self defense at that point.” Shane answers truthfully.
My lawyer nods. “So after you hit Jared to keep him from attacking Ms. Bishop again, you and Addilyn both left the party together?”
“Yes. Addilyn pulled me away from Jared so I wouldn’t hurt him. We left and I brought her to my house where I took care of her. The next morning I took her to the emergency room to get stitches and to make sure no real damage was done.”
“Please let the jury see that this was nothing but an act of self defense against the defendant’s wrath at a house party where alcohol was involved. Our plaintiff was doing nothing but trying to have a good time with her friends, but the defendant thought about having some fun of his own.” My lawyer states toward the jury who all have frowns on their faces. Well, all except for one of the males.
He might be a little hard to pull my way in this case. He seems like a Jared Winston type of guy.
I cringe at the thought of one person being the decision maker in my trial.
I need to show all of the proof I have, but only when the time is right. I want to wait for Rebecca to come and testify, and then I will release the recordings that I have. I hope that everything I have should be just what I need to put Jared away and make him do some time for what he’s done to not only me and Rebecca, but to who knows how many other girls.
“No further questions, your honor.” My lawyer says, releasing Shane from the stand.
I notice Shane let out a small breath of relief as he stands up and makes his way to his seat behind my parents. He sends me a smile as he passes me, and I return it.
“Thank you. We will continue this trial tomorrow morning at nine o’clock. In this time, the defendant must remain in protective custody at his current residence. He is not able to leave said residence until the trial resumes tomorrow. Thank you all and goodnight.” Judge Shepherd taps his gavel against the wooden desk and stands up to leave. Everyone else stands up as well, including the jury. They are ushered back into the room beside the Judges’ chambers.
I notice Jared get up and follow his parents and attorneys out of the courtroom.
“You did so good Shane!” My mom smiles to my boyfriend who stands beside me while placing a comforting arm around my shoulders.
“Thanks. I just said the truth.” Shane smiles.
I look up to him as he kisses my forehead. “Well, let’s get out of here. Let’s pick up Jacob and go out for an early dinner. Shane, you are more than welcome to join.” My dad says with a smile.
“Great, thanks!” Shane smiles as we all leave the courtroom.
After we pick up Jacob, we all head to dinner. We all go to a fancy Italian restaurant, and I order just a simple plate of pasta. I excuse myself to the bathroom once I’ve finished eating, and this time Shane doesn’t suspect a thing. Once everyone is done eating, we all head back to the car before dad pulls out of the parking lot to head home.
“Sissy, did you have fun at school?” Jacob asks.
“I didn’t go to school today silly.” I reply with a grin.
“That’s not fair! I had to go!” Jacob whines.
“And you have to go again tomorrow.” My dad replies from the driver’s seat.
“Don’t worry Jacob, school is way more fun than a court room.” Shane says from the other side of Jacob. Jacob is currently in the middle of Shane and me in his car seat.
“Really?” Jacob looks over to Shane who nods.
“Ha-ha, Addie. You have to go to court!” Jacob mocks, as I glare at him.
“Thanks, Shane.” I mumble which causes Shane to laugh.
“Jacob, enough.” My mom warns and Jacob instantly stops.
“Fine.” He mumbles while crossing his little arms.
“Someone is ready for bed.” My mother sings, while leaning forward to turn on some music.
After ten minutes, Jacob is passed out in his car seat.
“Works every time.” Mom smirks through the rear-view mirror.
We stop at Shane’s house to drop him off, and he kisses me goodbye before getting out of the car.
Once we get home, my mom carries Jacob up to his room for bed and I enter the kitchen with my dad.
“This trial is insane and it’s only the first day.” I sigh, pulling a water bottle from the fridge.
“And from my experience, it’s only going to get crazier.” My dad states as he probably reminisces about the trial of how Angelica’s dad fell during work at the construction site.
I heard stories of how they grilled my dad about every little thing, even once insinuated that he pushed Angelica’s dad on purpose, which is ridiculous.
I just hope my trial doesn’t get so out of hand. I would be crushed if Jared got away with everything Scott-free.
“As long as I have you guys there for support, I’m sure I’ll be okay.” I smile.
My dad meets my smile and says he is going up for a shower.
My mom never comes back down, so I assume she jumped in the shower as well, and that is where my dad is about to join her.
I go upstairs to my bedroom and shut the door, locking it.
I walk over to the bathroom and shut that door as well, locking it into place.
I slowly strip out of my clothes and glance at myself in the mirror. My glasses are still on, so I can see every flaw staring back at me.
I wince as the slight stretchmarks against my hips are becoming more defined, and I quickly rip my glasses from my face, setting them down onto the counter. Once my vision is slightly blurred, I turn around and face the toilet.
My friend. My scapegoat. My lifeline, or soon to be lack thereof.
I feel tears prickling my eyes as I look at it. I hate it. I want to remove the toilet from my bathroom, and never look at it again. Every time I see it, I want to curl up into a ball and fade away into nothing. I love it though. I love having control. I love knowing that I can eliminate everything inside of me at any time. It gives me this odd sense of power, that I lack in every other aspect of my life.
I shake my head and turn back to the sink. I glance into the mirror again, and actually laugh.
Once I finish staring at myself, probably hoping that something would change, I lean over and turn on the scalding hot water as I step into the shower. I let the steam and hot water consume my entire body, allowing my wet hair to fall over my eyes. I hold my breath as I stand underneath the fall, allowing the water to work its’ magic against my tense muscles.
After my shower, I dry myself off and get dressed into simple blue jean pants and a T-shirt. I brush my hair out and let it air dry, not bothering to put it back up.
As I finally lay down onto my bed, I hear my phone vibrate.
I sigh in annoyance, since I had finally gotten comfortable.
I reach over anyway and grab my cell phone. It’s a text from Shane.
Shane: I’d say that went good today.
Me: Yeah, it actually wasn’t so bad.
Shane: If it keeps going at this rate, Jared will be behind bars in no time.
Me: One can only hope. He deserves it after what he’s done to everyone.
Shane: You got that right. I wish there was a way to prove that he sent guys after Jax and me.
Me: Maybe there is.
Shane: What do you mean?
Me: Sorry, but I can’t tell you. You won’t like it.
Suddenly Shane is calling me.
“What are you talking about?” He says the moment I accept the call.
“I think I might know of a way to get info from Jared, but you’re not going to like it.”
“Well, what is it?” He urges.
“I’d need to go over and talk to Jared face to face... alone.”
“Are you crazy? Do you remember what he’s done to you? What if he does something even worse this time? No way. I’m not letting that happen.” Shane immediately shoots down my idea.
“Will you just stop for a second and listen to me?” I sigh.
After a moment, Shane is finally silent.
“You and Jax can stay outside across the street and out of view. I will Face-time you, but the screen will remain dark, since I’ll keep it in my pocket. You’ll then turn on your screen recording app on your phone as we Face-time, that way you can hear everything and you can also record everything that Jared and I say. I will get him to confess to arranging for those guys to jump you and Jax, and then if anything goes south, you will hear it and both you and Jax will be able to come and stop it.” I explain.
“That’s ridiculous!” Shane protests. “No way Addie!”
“Come on, Shane. I promise it will work! It’s the only way to get some real evidence that Jared is a douche bag. It’s something he won’t be able to pay his way out of!” I exclaim.
“I don’t feel comfortable with this.” Shane’s voice softens. “What if he hurts you again? I can’t let that happen.”
“I promise I’ll be alright. I can handle whatever Jared has to offer, trust me.” I defend myself. “Just please say yes? We need this evidence.” I beg.
“Let me talk to Jax about it first.” Shane says.
“Oh I already did. He already has black outfits for you and him to wear while you hide across the street.” I mumble.
I hear Shane audibly sigh, but then he actually agrees. “Fine, but the second I hear something I don’t like, we’re coming inside. With or without the evidence.” Shane instructs.
“Deal. Let’s do it tonight.” I say.
“What? Tonight? How the hell are we supposed to do it tonight?” Shane shouts.
“Don’t worry, Jax is already on his way over to get me and then we’ll come get you. Jax made up some lie about having to go help Angie, so he was able to take his mom’s car. Angie said she would cover for Jax if his mom calls over there. Everything is already a go.” I smile, though I know Shane can’t see.
“And how do you expect to escape your parents?” Shane replies smugly.
“Easy. I tell them Jax is picking me up to go see Angie, which Jax is picking me up.” I reply. “It’s not that late, plus we don’t exactly have school tomorrow because to the trial. It’s almost perfect.” I smile again, and this time I know he can see it.
“How did you plan this so fast?” Shane asks.
“I actually planned it earlier today before the trial, I just forgot to tell you about it. Plus I knew how you would react.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“Oh nothing babe. Anyway, I’ll text you when Jax and I are close.” Without waiting for his reply, I hang up the phone in satisfaction.
I hope this ends well.
“I hate this.” Shane mumbles from the backseat.
“Dude, it’s totally stealth.” Jax replies in a duh tone while looking at Shane through the rear-view mirror.
“It’s literally black tights with a black sweater.” Shane mumbles again, and I try to hide my giggles from the passenger seat. “How did you even get these?”
“They’re my mom’s.” Jax sheepishly smiles.
“WHAT?” Shane yells. “Why do you get the actual black jeans and T-shirt?”
“Because dude, they’re mine.” Jax shrugs.
I hear Shane mumbles some curse words from the backseat as we approach Jared’s ginormous home.
Jax parks down the street, out of view, and then the three of us walk towards Jared’s house but we still stay across the street.
“Okay, you guys go hide in some bushes somewhere, and I’ll go get the confession.” I instruct as Jax nods.
“I really don’t have a good feeling about this.” Shane says looking directly into my eyes.
“I promise, I’ll be fine, plus you’ll be hearing everything. Just don’t forget to turn yourselves on mute so Jared doesn’t hear anything coming from my pocket.” I warn.
Shane nods while Jax does some weird hand signal that I don’t quite understand. I shake my head and begin to walk across the street toward Jared’s house.
Images from the party come flooding back, but I do my best to keep them toward the back of my mind.
Once I finally reach Jared’s door, I slowly bring my hand up to knock.
After a few light pounds to the door, I wait for an answer.
Before the door opens, I hurriedly pull my cell phone out and Face-time with Shane. Once he’s connected, I see him put his screen on mute while I keep my volume on. I push the phone back into my pants pocket and wait for the door to open.
When it finally swings open, Jared is standing before me with an emotionless face.
“Addilyn, to what do I owe the pleasure?”
“I want to talk.” I say confidently.
“Pretty sure we aren’t supposed to talk outside of the courtroom, doll face.” Jared replies smoothly.
“Oh Jared, since when have you ever followed the rules?” I smirk.
“Touché, come inside. My parents are out to dinner. My lovely butler Roscoe is looking after me.” Jared shrugs.
I follow him inside and through the foyer, soon after walking into the living room.
“Please, take a seat.” He instructs, and I follow.
He sits opposite of me on the second leather couch while bringing one leg up and lounging it on his other leg.
“So, what can I do for you?” He smiles.
“I want to talk about why you sent men to beat up Shane and Jaxon.” I say, getting straight to the point. “Your beef is with me, why are you attacking my friends?”
Jared eyes me suspiciously, and proceeds to smirk.
“What makes you think that I sent men after them?” He asks innocently.
“Isn’t it obvious? Both encounters, your men specifically tell Shane and Jaxon to get me to drop the case. Besides, those were probably the same men that you had kidnap me.” I glare.
“Hm, I don’t seem to know what you’re talking about at all, Addilyn.” He purrs.
“Don’t give me that. You know what you did and I want to know why!” I begin to get angry. He must know something is up, because he isn’t cooperating.
“I think you need to calm down Addilyn.” His eyes finally turn to slits.
Ha, good. I want him to get angry. He tends to be a blabbermouth when he’s angry.
“I think you need to answer my fucking questions.” I raise an eyebrow at his request to calm myself.
“My, Addilyn. Feisty. I like it.” He winks seductively.
I know what he’s doing. He must know somebody is listening. He wants a reaction before he confesses to something he doesn’t want to. Is he too smart for me?
“Don’t start with that. Give me an answer, or are you only tough when you have back up?” I challenge, causing Jared to glare as soon as the smirk falls from his face.
“Don’t test me Addilyn.” He warns.
“I’m not testing anything. I just think it’s funny how you act so superior to everyone else, yet if only they knew what an actual coward you really are.” I cross my arms over my chest.
Okay Addilyn, don’t push it too far.
Jared finally stands up and walks over toward me. I immediately stand up, so we are almost at eye level. He puffs his chest out a little, and I do my best not to falter.
“I’m not scared of you anymore, Jared. I know who you really are. You’re nothing.” I evilly taunt, as our noses are an inch away from touching.
“Keep it up Addilyn, and it won’t just be my men coming after you. I have an entire army of people who will do whatever I tell them to do.” Jared says, and I almost cheer with victory at his small, but still informational confession.
“So you did send men after Shane and Jax?” I pretend to get angrier about it, even though I already knew the answer.
“That was just the beginning, love. There’s still time to back out of this trial.” He smirks, his hot breath fanning against my face.
“Please. This is just the beginning, love.” I smirk as I mock his words.
Jared’s eyes flash with anger, and at that exact moment, a very loud sneeze echoes throughout the living room.
My eyes widen as my entire body freezes.
Jared’s eyes linger on my body until they stop at my pants and then he smirks.
“God Addilyn, you think you’re so clever don’t you?” Jared takes a threatening step towards me as I take one step back.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. That was Roscoe. Bless you Roscoe!” I shout toward the kitchen.
At that exact moment, the front door to Jared’s house swings open and in come Shane and Jax, though Jax is still on his crutches so he’s a little slower than Shane.
“Addie, come on!” Shane shouts. I dart around Jared and sprint for the front door. Jared lunges after me and catches the back of my T-shirt, causing me to trip and fall on my face.
Jared jumps on top of me and reaches for my cell phone in my pocket. Shane is beside me in a heartbeat, pushing Jared off me and lifting me up. I manage to grasp my hand onto my cell phone and sprint out of the house with Shane. Jax is already almost to the car a head of Shane and me.
“You’ll regret this Addilyn!” Jared shouts, though he doesn’t follow us as his ankle monitor would go off.
I smile with victory as Shane and I jump into Jax’s car.
“Holy crap, that was close!” I say, adrenaline causing me to smile.
“You think?” Shane glares in my direction.
“You get everything?” I ask.
Shane pulls his cellphone out of his pocket and stops the recording. He saves the recording to his phone and then sends a copy of it to me. “Got it.” He smirks.
“Holy crap! I’m so winning this trial!” I smile wide as Shane pulls me into his arms in the backseat.
“I gotta say, Addie. You are one bad ass chick right now.” Jax chuckles from the front seat.
“Why thank you.” I say in an annoying accent.
Now all I have to do is present this to the jury and I’m golden.
“Um, Shane...” I begin.
I look over at him and begin to giggle as I look down at his tights.
“You might wanna change back into your normal jeans now. Those tights are working for you just a little too well.” I tease which causes Jax to let out a very loud laugh.
Shane’s eyes turn to slits as he pulls his jeans from the floor of the car.
“Shut. The hell. Up.” He seethes. “This doesn’t leave this car, ever. Not even to Angie.”
As soon as he says that, there is a snap sound coming from my phone as I hold it up in front of Shane. A quick flash shines directly onto Shane as I save the picture and hurriedly tuck my phone back into my pocket.
“Addie...” Shane warns.
“Hush up twinkle toes.” I smirk while Jax continues to laugh as he drives both Shane and I home.
I can’t wait to bury Jared. He will pay for what he’s done, one way, or another.