In The Arms of You

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Chapter 18: Truth be Told

I’m shaken awake by someone. I look up to see Zach facing me. “We’re at your house.” He said. I nodded my head and opened the door to get out. I looked on the porch to find Zach’s mom standing there. What’s she doing here?

“Zach, your mom’s here,” I say turning back to him. He looked confused but looked at where I was looking before and saw her standing there.

He gets out of the car and we both walk up to the porch. I don’t think his mom noticed us because she was turned around. “Mom?” Zach said causing her to turn around. His mom smiles and hugs him tightly.

“Where the hell were you!” She said. She then looked at me beside him. “Both of you! Where were you guys! Lena your dad is worried sick about you!” She said in an unfamiliar tone.

“Yeah, I’m sure he was,” I whispered to myself.

“What was that Lena?” She said turning to look at me.

“N-Nothing,” I said. Before she could open her mouth again my father came out of the house.

He glared at me before speaking. “You’re home! Thank god! You don’t know how worried Mack and I have been.” He said giving me a meaningless hug.

“S-Sorry for that,” I said.

“Don’t you dare do that ever again!” He said shouting a little. I know he meant much more behind that statement.

“Y-Yes s-sir,” I said stuttering a bit. My dad looked at Zach. “Thank you for bringing her home.” He said to him.

“No problem. See yeah later, Sleeping Beauty.” And with that Zach and his mom left.

My father changed from being this worried guy about his daughter to a demon within a second. “Get in the house now!” He shouted. I quickly scurried into the house where Mack stood in the middle of the room, smirking at me.

That night was the worse beating I’d ever received. I didn’t know if I’d ever wake up again after this time. Being pulled into the light sounded like a good thing. At least I’d be with mom and we’d both be safe from him and Mack.

I didn’t want to wake up after that, but unfortunately, I did. I really thought I was gone this time. Just my luck huh. I did the best I could to drag myself up the stairs and into my room. I dragged myself onto my bed, not caring about a single thing in that moment.

I was happy my phone hadn’t been damaged any more than it already has. I ignored the beeping sound of my phone before I fell into a deep sleep, hopefully, I won’t wake up from this one.

o-0-o

The next morning I felt worse. With the nightmare and pain I received last night, it felt like I couldn’t even move the next morning. I got up and out of the bed though and got dressed, even though the pain was unbearable and shooting throughout my whole body.

Covering my face with makeup to hide the bruising and I put on a simple pair of jeans with the regular hoodie that I always wear. I grabbed my things, meaning my bag and phone, before heading downstairs to make them breakfast.

I quickly made them a meal of bacon, eggs, and a stack of pancakes each. Even though I was hungry I didn’t eat anything. I’m being punished by not to eat anything for the next three days. I’ll survive, hopefully.

School wasn’t any easier. I didn’t want to be there. I wanted to be back home, and by home I mean with my mom. There, no one could hurt me. I’d be completely free. I did my best to ignore Zach all day, I just couldn’t face him. I didn’t want him in my life just to bring him down into the pain that I receive daily.

“Lena, are you sure you’re okay?” Iza asked me as we exited 2nd block and on our way to lunch.

“Yeah Iza, I’m fine,” I told her. She gave me a look that said she didn’t buy it.

Before I knew it I was being dragged into an empty classroom. Lucky no one was in there. “Lena, something is wrong and I know it. You know it too. I know you’ve been lying to me. I want to know why you have so many bruises on you and why you look like you haven’t slept in days!” She said getting a little pissed off at me.

I know she needs to know the truth. Who else would I trust with the truth besides my best friend? I sighed. “I know you’re right Iza.” I began. “Before I start my story, you have to promise that whatever I say in this room, doesn’t leave this room. You can’t tell anyone! Not Amy, not Bret, and especially not Zach!”

She nodded her head and took my hand in hers. “I promise Lena.” She said. I nodded my head. I slowly took off my hoodie, revealing the bruises on my body. I had put on a tank top this morning to try not to let much fabric touch my arms.

Iza put a hand over her mouth and gasp. “Lena...” She said in horror. I wanted to break down and cry right then and there, but I held myself up for her sake. Iza had a worried look in her eyes followed by tears. “Who did this to you?” She asked in a very scared and worried tone and she looked at me.

“My father,” I said in simple words. “And Mack.”

“Why?” She asked and came over and hugged me gently, trying not to put any pressure on my bruises.

I told her the story of how my mother died, the real story, unlike the one I told Zach. I told her what Mack has done to me. I told her why I had been gone for a couple of days. The real reason why I was in the hospital that night. Everything came spilling out of my mouth.

Tears were spilled from both our cheeks when I was one speaking. Before Iza could speak there was a knock at the classroom door. “Who is in there?” the principal’s voice echoed through our sobs. I quickly throw my hoodie over my head before Iza let her in the classroom.

“Girls, you know you aren’t supposed to be in here right? It’s a classroom.” Dr. Farris said to us not caring if we were crying or not.

“Yes, ma’am we knew that. We just need a private time to talk. It’s our lunch break so we decided to have a little talk.” Iza said lying right to the principal. She did it for me.

Right when Dr. Farris opened her mouth the bell rang. “Well, you better get to class. This is a warning, if I catch either of you in a classroom again where you’re not supposed to be in with no teacher in the room I will have to call your parents.”

We both nodded then left the room. “Lena, you will be alright. I can get you help--”

I cut her off at that point. “No Iza, I mean it. You can’t tell anyone! I don’t want to drag anyone else into this burden I have to carry. I have to do it on my own.” I then walked away from her to third block.

She had to understand that I need my space and that she can’t go and tell someone, anyone for that matter what has happened to me. Who knows what would happen to me if my father found out that I told someone and what would happen to that someone who I had told in the first place.

Iza didn’t listen to a word I said when I told her not to tell anyone.

I ran into Zach, by accident, when I was heading home. I was walking home when he was walking the opposite way towards the school. The pissed expression on his face scared the living daylights out of me. It reminded me of my father.

“Why didn't you tell me?” Was the first words he spoke. Right then I knew Iza had told him.

“W-What was I-I supposed t-to tell y-you?” I said stuttering a bit. I was definitely scared. “T-That I get a-abused by my o-own f-father! That my b-brother sexually a-abuses me!” I said loud enough for him to hear but no one else.

He crosses his arms over his chest. “You could have told me on our way home from Stormy Brook. That that’s why you were crying on the phone when you were speaking with your father. Instead, you lied to me!”

“Well I-I’m sorry I l-lied to you to protect you, to p-protect your mother from what my f-father might do if I didn’t return home,” I said as more tears went down my face. Crying twice in one day just wasn’t my plan. Never is it anybody’s plan to cry. The rain was still falling from the other day. Still a stormy day. It was the right time to cry. The Earth felt the same way I did; sad, lost, and scared.

“I hate being lied to Lena if that even is your real name. I understand why you did it, but that doesn’t make it right! I would have helped you if you had told me the truth instead of lying to my face.” He growled at me a bit, causing me to take a step back away from him.

“I--” but Zach wasn’t finished talking to me.

“Just don’t say anything else. Who knows if it’s a lie or not.”

He backed up and walked in the direction of his home, leaving me in the pouring rain.

Why does the truth hurt?

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