Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copy left
You can read our best books
Catstaff would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Richard's Redemption

By Catstaff

Drama / Romance

Chapter 1

They don't understand why I did it. They all think I'm nothing but a suck-up and a fink. I suppose that's true, but not for the reasons they think. They don't know what I've been hiding so desperately all these years. They don't know the loss I felt when the news came. I've never showed it, never showed anyone my real feelings. But I needed to hurt someone else as badly as I was hurting. It couldn't be them, and it couldn't be Neil's father, so there was no one left but Mr. Keating. Neil had pretty well worshiped the man anyway, so it must have been his fault. Or so I told myself.

I just wish it had worked. But all it did was make the others turn on me. Especially when Todd Anderson pulled that little stunt of climbing onto his desk in front of Dean Nolan, when Mr. Keating came for his things. What surprised me the most was that everyone followed along. Even me.

And now it's welcome back to “Hell-ton” following the winter break. Welcome back to a class missing two of its members. Welcome back to the place where I no longer have anyone willing to count me as a friend, however grudgingly. Welcome back to an announcement from Dean Nolan that everyone was getting new dorm assignments, to “keep us from dwelling on the past.” As if anything is going to stop that from happening.


I sigh as I head towards the dorm following the start-of-term ceremony in the school chapel, wondering who my new roommate will be. Hopefully no one as crazy as Charlie Dalton was. Nuwanda. But I'm sure they'll have made sure not to put any of the members of the Dead Poet's Society together, since they're trying to make like Neil never lived and died. And why does it still hurt so much to think of it? He never really liked me, I know that. My fault, really, but I never really wanted anyone to like me. At least not until I learned what it felt like to be truly despised. I hope my new roommate is from one of the other sections of the class. At least if he is, he won't have known Neil quite so well.
But my heart nearly stops when I check the board for the new listings. Anderson? They're putting me in with Todd Anderson? I drop my suitcase, I'm so surprised. As I pick it up and straighten up again, a hand lands on my shoulder. I manage not to yelp, but I do jump a little.
“Mr. Cameron, I'm sorry to have startled you,” Dean Nolan says. “I'm sure you've seen your new room assignment. As I'm sure you know, Mr. Anderson refused to sign the statement against your former teacher. I felt it best to have him rooming with someone the faculty knows they can rely upon to report any further irregularities in his behavior. Do you understand?”
“Yes, sir, I do,” I reply automatically.
“Good.” Dean Nolan nods once, looking over the pile of yet-unclaimed suitcases sitting by the notice board. “Have a successful term, Mr. Cameron.”
I head for the stairs as the Dean walks away. Wonderful. Even the Dean is convinced that I'm nothing more than a bootlicker. For the first time, I seriously consider chucking it all. But I'm too scared. I don't know how to do anything but meet the expectations of those in authority. Until earlier this year, it never even occurred to me that there might be other options.
The room is empty when I get there, although Todd's suitcase is open on one of the beds. He must be off greeting someone else. Probably Overstreet. Or Meeks, or Pitts. No matter. I unpack methodically, preferring the solitude to the silent treatment I know I would get if any of the others was in here talking to Todd. He'd changed almost out of recognition in the last couple of weeks of the old term. It was as if a switch had been thrown in him, from the moment he stood up on his desk in defiance of Dean Nolan and in honor of Mr. Keating. The hesitant and shy Todd Anderson had vanished, and the new Todd Anderson seemed almost cocky. As if he was serving notice that he no longer had anything to lose.
Maybe he didn't.
Neil had been Todd's first real friend. Even I could see that. Neil had stood between him and a lot of teasing, had smoothed his way socially with the others, and encouraged his writing. I'd wondered sometimes, was there something about Todd in particular that made Neil want to help him? Or was it just Neil being Neil, helping out the new and nervous person who'd been randomly assigned as his roommate? I wondered if Neil might have liked me better if we'd been assigned together as nervous new students... if maybe he would have seen through my walls the way he seemed to have seen through Todd's. But that had been five years ago, and fate had given me Chet Danburry as a roommate back then, and the only thing Chet did was convince me that hiding my feelings was the best way to avoid becoming his punching bag. I was glad when he flunked out the following year. But by then, I never wanted anyone to know how I felt about anything.
I wish I'd been able to tell Neil how much I liked him.
Todd returns to the room as I shove my empty suitcase under the bed. My breath catches in my throat slightly as I look up at him. With that new confidence or cockiness or whatever it was, the way he walks now reminds me of Neil when he'd gotten the role of Puck in the Henley Hall play. Todd's eyes are different, though. Neil's had sparkled with the joy he'd had in doing something he really enjoyed. Todd's eyes only show pain and loss, which made me want to comfort him somehow.
But I don't even have time to stand before a shutter drops down behind Todd's eyes. He sweeps me with a look of disdain... which I deserve... and turns his back to finish his own unpacking. I sit on my bed, trying not to watch as Todd moves from the bed to the wardrobe and back again. He never says a word.

I have a feeling it's going to be a long term.


Continue Reading Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

CurlyRed: I read this entire book in just under 4 hours I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN! i found myself emotionally attached to the characters and making personal connections that i had never experienced before while reading a book! I was constantly wanting to read more, every chapter left me on a cliff hanger tha...

jessiealexandrap: Truly loving the novel, each chapter presents itself greater than the one beforehand. I truly love the novel and give definate question to why it's not published of yet. The novel truly deserves great attention and all should read the beautiful story.

Flik: Hi! ^.^ huge fan of yours on ff.net! When I saw the note about this contest on The Way We Smile, I couldn't help but rush over here, create an account, and vote! XD Seriously love this story and would recommend it to anyone! :D best FT fanfiction out there. Amazing story, amazing concept that wa...

Alex Rushmer: This was not what I expected, but I enjoyed it a lot Malfoy was always one of the characters that I liked a lot, so I like that a lot of this happens between him and Colette. I read the first couple chapters, and I enjoyed your writing style and am excited to see where you take this story. My com...

LouiseJ2: I enjoyed the detail you went into with regards to the case. It made the UNSUB appear believable. The crisis in the middle of the story was my favorite part, very dramatic but not over the top. I feel like sometimes pairings can be overdone but I liked that some of the relationships were a little...

Lora Georgieva: Alpha Kaden is definitely one of the best stories I've ever read. Once you start reading it you just can't get away from the amazing characters and their exciting story. I love the whole series and recommend it to everyone who is fan of fantasy and romance

Ruby0h: Overall I thought your story was really good! It drew me in right away and kept me interested as the story progressed. I loved the character of Kayla being inserted into this story, and the way she affected and shaped the life of the original story into something totally new and interesting. I lo...

AMATULLA VOHRA: the story is very good and the story is absolutely amazing .I had a great time reading it.I loved your story very much and I wanna say just keep writing................it's a great story and a very unique one too....

salma elsamy: it's really awesome , and I really like the whole idea of the story . I also love how simple the vocabularies because English is my second language and the simplicity of the story is great for me . And I will definitely buy it if it's published.

More Recommendations

KC_Ward: Black Mark was one of the most interesting romance novels I have read. I really enjoyed the fact that Mora has such a strong character and held her ground. Each character had a background story that gave clues as to what shaped their personalities. This novel was almost like two books rolled into...

263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...

Mourn8220House: When first reading "Avarice," I thought it would be another fairytale but I was taken back the author's approach and choice of ending. There is little to be said for the story and overall plot besides the sudden twists and speculation, other than that I do not want to ruin a fantastic tale, you m...

mullikin902: Do not start reading this book unless you have enough time to finish it in one sitting, because you will not be able to put it down! Superlative! Addictive! Deliciously wicked characters you can't get enough of. Impatiently waiting for the sequel!

vanellesapp: It was so amazing to read this book each part was entertaining.It is that kind of love every body will like to have.I will have like the explanation on how they did it the first time to be more explicit but apart from that it is perfect