Chapter 26 | Long Day
I can’t believe I’m sitting here in the parking lot of a prison. It feels surreal.
It’s also terrifying. It’s terrifying to know that the man who raped me and broke me beyond belief, is sitting just on the other side of those grey walls.
“Are you sure you’re alright sitting out here?” Ethan asks, looking over to me.
I nod. “I sure as shit ain’t going in there.”
Ethan nods as he opens the driver side door. “Hopefully this doesn’t take long. I promise I’ll try to be quick about it. I don’t have much to tell him anyway, I was just here not that long ago.”
“Alright.” I nod.
“When I leave, lock all the doors.” He instructs.
“Will do.” I reply, leaning against the window. “I’ll probably take another nap while you’re in there.”
“I’ll be back.” Ethan leans over and kisses my cheek, before getting out and shutting the Jeep door.
As soon as he leaves, I’m met with silence. The Jeep is off so we don’t waste more gas.
I rolled the back windows down just a little, enough so air can seep through, but not enough to where someone can reach in and do anything.
I can’t help but think about Blake and his friends. I have never smoked marijuana before in my entire life, but doing it today showed me maybe it’s what I’ve been missing all this time.
It made me feel nothing. Nothing except, lite.
I felt so lite and so free, like I could do anything.
I didn’t feel any pain, or any regret. I felt peace.
Is that terrible to say? That the only way to feel peace is to smoke pot?
Surely that can’t be right. Obviously there is still something very wrong with me. I just need to go and see Lori soon. I know she will have something helpful to say.
She always does.
| Ethan’s POV |
After signing in, and walking through the metal detectors, I’m finally seated at one of the tables in the visiting room. My leg is shaking as I wait for Jeremy.
I still can’t believe that Dallas would smoke marijuana, and with Blake at that. I know plenty about Blake, Liam and I see him at all the parties while he and his friends get trashed.
He’s not necessarily a bad guy, but he isn’t a very good one either.
I didn’t even know that Dallas knew Blake.
I’m really starting to get worried for her. She isn’t acting like herself at all.
“Hello little brother.”
I looked up and my eyes widened. Jeremy looked so much different than when I was last here.
His long hair is now shaved, and he has a few tattoos going up his arms. There are a few minor bruises along his jaw, but they look to be healing.
“Tattoos? Really?” I raise an eyebrow as he sits down.
He only shrugs. “Why not? I’m here for a while, might as well look the part, right?”
“Let’s just get this over with.” I sigh.
“Awe, my little brother hasn’t missed me?” He fakes a frown.
I feel my jaw tighten. I’m not here to make small talk, and act as if everything is fine between us.
“Lighten up, shit. How’s school? I know you had some exams today.”
“What, do you and mom keep tabs on me together or something?” I scoff.
“We talk on occasion, just to keep me in the loop. I’m still part of this family, Ethan.”
My name sounded disgusting coming from his mouth.
“Yeah, maybe to them.” I mumble, referring to our parents.
I hear Jeremy let out a sigh. “I’m trying here. I know I’ve fucked up.”
“Oh, do you? Now you know you fucked up?” I glare. “What about while you were-“, but I can’t even finish my sentence. Saying it again, will just set me off.
After the day I’ve had, that wouldn’t be ideal.
“I’m in counseling.” He admits.
I meet his gaze. “What?”
“I see a therapist every week, sometimes twice a week. He’s really been helping me, Ethan. I don’t know how to explain it.”
I can’t believe this. Both he and Dallas are seeing therapists over what he did. They wouldn’t have had to go through any of this if Jeremy would’ve just kept his dick in his pants.
I can’t believe it, but I’m laughing.
“What’s so funny?” Jeremy furrows his eyebrows.
“So you’re in therapy, as if you’re some victim?” I ask incredulously. “Oh my God, that’s perfect.”
“It isn’t funny Ethan. I’m fucked up in the head. I don’t know what happened to me after I left for college. Something just snapped and I turned into a monster. I know you will never forgive me for what I did, but I needed to start forgiving myself.” He explains calmly.
He sounds as if he’s repeating his therapists’ exact words.
“You’re right, I will never forgive you for what you’ve done.” The laughing has died, and my face has never been this serious.
“I accept that.” He nods.
“Are we done here? She’s out in the car and I need to-“, but he instantly cuts me off.
“She? Is Dallas here? Do you think she’ll come inside?” Jeremy is now acting very weird. He’s looking around the room, as if he’ll spot her somewhere.
“No, are you bat-shit crazy? I’d never let her come in here!” I all but shout.
“I really need to see her, Ethan. You don’t understand.” He almost pleads.
“Fuck no!” I shout.
“I need to tell her how sorry I am!” Jeremy shouts wildly, and it almost scares me.
“Inmate! Settle down!” One of the guards shouts in our direction. “Or you’re out of here!”
“Ethan, I swear to God, go get her.” Jeremy seethes.
My eyes widen. This isn’t my brother. This isn’t Jeremy. This is a psychopath.
“Alright, I’m leaving.” I say as I stand up.
I didn’t even make it one foot before Jeremy leaped on me. We both fell to the ground with force, and I had to scream out because we both landed on my wrist. I hope it isn’t broken.
“Get the fuck off me!” I shout from underneath Jeremy. He’s holding me down.
“Guards!” I yell.
Two guards coming charging for us, both reaching out and yanking Jeremy up and off me.
“I need to see her! Dallas!” Jeremy shouts frantically.
“Get him out of here, now!” Another guard appears in the room. “You, you need to leave.”
The guard was pointing to me now, so I nod and follow him out of the room while holding my wrist.
“You think it’s broken?” The guard asks.
“I don’t know.” I say, because I honestly can’t feel anything. I’m completely numb.
What the hell just happened?
“You want me to call an ambulance, son?” The guard sighed, probably having done this procedure on a regular basis.
“No that’s alright, I’ve got someone outside.”
“Alright, take care.” The guard replies, as I leave the building.
I make it to the Jeep and knock on the window, startling Dallas.
She unlocks the door and opens it. “What happened?”
I’m glad she’s finally come down from her high.
“I need you to drive us home. My wrist is hurt.”
Her eyes grow a size as she looks at my wrist. It’s already starting to turn purple.
“What the hell happened? We need to get that looked at, Ethan!” Dallas says frantically while jumping out of the Jeep to allow me to sit in the passenger seat.
She helps me up into the Jeep, and once I’m settled and buckled in, she runs around to the driver’s side.
She types the nearest hospital into her GPS before turning to face me.
“It was stupid, I let it slip that you were out here waiting on me, and Jeremy flipped out. He said he needed to see you and tell you how sorry he is, but he got crazy. He started yelling and when I tried to leave, he attacked me. We fell on the floor and landed on my wrist.” I explain.
“Oh my God, he’s insane.” Dallas breathes out as she grips the steering wheel.
“Are you sure you’re okay to drive now? You were pretty out of it earlier. Speaking of, why the hell did you get high with Blake?” I begin questioning.
“Now’s not the time, Ethan. I’m fine. We need to get you to the hospital. I think it might be broken.” Dallas sighs in reply, just as she pulls out of the prison parking lot.
“I’m never bringing you here with me again.” I say simply.
Dallas only nods. “Noted.”
| Dallas’ POV |
Turns out Ethan did in fact break his wrist. It’s only a hairline fracture, but he still had to get a cast. The doctor prescribed him some pain killers, and sent us on our merry way.
“We should fill these before we go home.” I say as we get back into the Jeep.
After we stop at the pharmacy and wait twenty minutes for Ethan’s prescription, we are finally on the road again and heading home.
Hours later, we make it to our street. The ride has been quiet, so I know Ethan isn’t happy.
I stop beside the curb to Ethan’s house and turn to face him.
“I’m really sorry about today. I’m an idiot.” I admit.
“It just scared me a little. You aren’t acting like yourself, Dallas. We all notice it.”
“We all?” I question.
“Liam, Lexi, your dad. I know Lori is helping you a lot, but I still think you have a long way to go before you’re ever going to be just Dallas again.”
Something about the way he said it, makes me feel uneasy. Almost as if I’m being judged by my family.
“Well, I’m sorry I’m such a freak show.” I comment dryly.
“That’s not what I’m saying.” Ethan sighs. “You want to just talk tomorrow? We’ve both had a long day.”
I nod as he opens the Jeep door. I don’t say anything when he leans over to kiss my cheek.
After I drive home and get inside, I see Liam lounging on the couch.
“You’re home late. What happened?” He immediately asks.
“Ethan broke his wrist, after Jeremy attacked him.” I shrug casually.
“What the fuck?” Liam sits up from his position on the couch.
“Then we went to the hospital to get him a cast, then we came home. Now you know everything.”
“Why did Jeremy attack Ethan?”
“I’ll let Ethan tell you, I’m exhausted.” I yawn just before stepping onto the stairs.
“I’m sure you are, stoner.” Liam scoffs.
“Whatever, like you’re some saint.” I roll my eyes.
“Bitch.” He mutters under his breath.
“Asshole.” I mutter under my own breath.
“Dallas, get the hell in this kitchen now!” We hear dad’s voice boom throughout the house.
“Good luck, Dal.” Liam smiles smugly.
“You fucking snitch!” I glare before turning toward the kitchen.
As if this night couldn’t get any worse.