I tilted my head back a little as I felt the breeze pass us. It felt so liberating, no more ties.
We were on the way to his house to clean myself up. I thought back to this morning and closed my eyes tightly.
I can’t believe Derrick hit me. It was a shock to wake up being thrown on the floor. His eyes were angry as I barely escaped to go to school. Then again, I crashed a picture frame to his head. I push the memories back. I don’t need to think about it.
I looked at Cole and smiled.
I had never been so happy in my life. He did it. He really did it.
I knew I had a lot of explaining to do. I just hoped Cole didn’t leave me after I told him everything. Fear begins to creep over me.
What if he doesn’t believe me?
What if he’ll leave?
What if he’ll be mad at me?
I couldn’t handle that.
As my breathing started becoming frantic, a warm hand landed on my middle thigh, rubbing his thumb in a soothing gesture. Tingles spread throughout my body.
I felt myself calm down, taking deep breaths. He can already read my emotions. What if he reads my mind? I flushed behind his back. I certainly hope not.
We made it to his driveway and he helps me down. We walk into his house and Cole immediately drags me to the bathroom. He gently lifted me to sit on the counter and moved to open his medicine cabinet. He takes out a first aid kit and started cleaning my cut.
He put some liquid on it and I hissed as it made contact with my skin. I felt Cole tense and clenched his jaw.
“Did he do this to you?” he hissed. I knew he already knew the answer. He just wanted confirmation.
I looked down ashamed. I hated feeling weak. I nodded my head silently. I wanted to be honest with him.
I jumped when he slammed his fist against the wall. He was seething. I felt the rage inside him pouring out in waves. The need to find Derrick and beat him to death.
I quickly got off the counter to Cole and hugged him. I can’t stand to see him this upset over me. Cole wraps his arms around me and brings me closer to him. I don’t complain as it became a little more difficult to breathe. For the first time in a long time, I felt safe. Protected. I knew no one will harm me because I have Cole.
“Please calm down. I’m here with you. I’m safe.” I whisper.
Slowly, he begins to calm down. He leans down to rest his forehead against mine and closes his eyes.
We stayed like that for a while. Just holding each other. After a while, Cole pulled away, taking the warmth with him. I frowned at that.
“Rochelle, can you please explain what is happening to me? I think I’m losing my mind. I’m so confused and I don’t understand. I know Derrick did this to you. How is this possible? Why do I feel the need to be with you? Why have I been having dreams about you five weeks before I met you? Why-?” I cut off his rant.
“Wait, you’ve had dreams about me before we met?” I asked, shocked. I’ve never heard of a situation like this before. It’s usually after we meet for the first time. There’s no way he could’ve known about me before then.
Cole looked embarrassed, a red hue spreading across his face.
“Yes, but don’t think of me as a creep. Oh god, you probably do. Don’t leave yet! There’s still stuff I want to ask. I know I seem insane, but it’s true. I probably sound in-”
I cut him off from his ramble by pressing my finger against his lips to silence him. I felt a shock go through my arm, but I ignored it. I needed to concentrate.
“I don’t think you’re insane. I have some of the answers you need. I think you’re going to call me crazy after I tell you everything. I am going to be honest as possible, alright? If you want me to leave, I’ll leave, okay?” I finished carefully.
Cole nods cautiously and leads me to the couch to sit.
“To be honest with you, I don’t know where to start.” I admitted.
“How about all the way to the beginning?” He suggested softly.
I took a deep breath and looked at him.
“Some of this may sound crazy. Like really crazy. Mental institution crazy.”
“Trust me, I can believe almost anything right now.” He mutters as he rubbed his hands together.
I sighed. Here goes nothing.
“My father, Henry Smith, is the leader of a group called the Somnia.”
“We are humans,” I added quickly when I saw his look of disbelief. “We are just unique on some aspects. The word Somnia is from the Latin word, somnium, or “dream”. Our people are also known as what you say, “dream walkers”. Somnias have the ability to recreate fate. It’s how humans have high hopes and dreams for their futures. To send them on their right paths. It is our job to make sure they follow their journey or fate through dreams. Of course, we don’t decide the person’s future, they have their own choice on how their fate will go. Besides that, we are like everyday humans.” I tried to end nonchalantly.
Cole stares at me and says nothing.
He jumped out of his spot on the couch and paces.
“So let me get this straight,” he said. “So you are the daughter of a leader that’s not even human and you’re people are called the Salmonella? Your job is to help guide us through dreams and voodoo stuff?” he exasperated.
“We are still human and we don’t do voodoo. And it’s Somnia, Cole. Not salmonella.” I say a bit amused.
“You know what I mean!” He snapped with wide eyes and rapid breathing. He looked on the verge of a panic attack. I jumped up quickly.
“I know it sounds crazy, but you have to believe me.” I pleaded. I grabbed his hand and his breathing slowed down instantly.
Cole looked at me. Really looked at me. After a few moments, he sighed and ran his hand through his hair.
“I believe you. There is only one thing I need to ask.” I sighed in relief and gave him an encouraging smile.
“What’s a bond?”
Rochelle tensed after I asked that question. I knew from the look on her face I wasn’t going to get any answers.
Rochelle looked at me helplessly.
“I don’t think you’re ready to know that.” Rochelle said quietly.
Before I could protest, she continued talking.
“You were just introduced with a whole bunch of information. I don’t want to overload your brain when I just gave you this big piece of information. You need to process this before I give you more.” she explained, her eyes begging me to agree.
I sighed. She was right, but I wasn’t going down until I got one more bit of information.
“Just tell me this. In a dream I saw a picture of your family, I think. Why aren’t you with them and with Derrick?”
She smiled sadly.
“I was taken. I had no choice.” She whispered.
My world stopped for a few moments. I needed to get the sadness out of her eyes. Once I saw tears start to form, I felt guilty for pushing her. She would have told me when the time came. I sat on the couch and pulled her closer to me. Rochelle relaxed and rested her head on the crook of my neck. I let her cry while my heart broke.
Who would hurt this innocent angel?
We stayed like that until we both fell asleep.