Without You (Book 1)

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Chapter 24: Dawn

“Mum, can I talk to you about something” I sigh, plopping onto the couch beside her.

She looks at her phone intently barely acknowledging my presence. “Can it wait? I’m busy right now and I have to go pickup the little ones soon, then your father is taking me out”

She never has time for me. “He’s not my father.”

“Dawn Rose Winters! He is your father and you will not disrespect him like that” her lips form into a thin, firm line like they always do when she’s unhappy with me.

“He treats me like shit all the time!” I raise my voice, crossing my arms across my chest.

“You need to stop with these stories you come up with, he has not once treated you badly.” She shakes her head, letting out a frustrated sigh.

Stories, Right. “why would you care anyways? You never do.” I stand up, turning away from her.

“Of course I care about you! Who put it into your head that I didn’t?” She asks

The man you call my father maybe? How you never have time for me? How when I need you you aren’t there? “Doesn’t matter.” Was all I could say before making my way to my room.

After shutting my door behind me I stumble to my bed before falling onto it, letting out all my frustrations by screaming into the mattress below me as tears prick the corners of my eyes.

Maybe she’ll see how much I need her and come save me from these emotions. She’s my mum, she loves me. She’ll be here for me cause I need her. I need her to tell me it will all be okay.

An hour passes and nothing.

I get out of my bed and walk over to the window overlooking the front yard.

Peering out the window, I see her, my mum. She’s walking away with her husband, the man she calls my father, after dropping my little brother and sister off at our neighbors.

She doesn’t love me or care about me. I need her right now and she isn’t here. She’s never here, no one is.

No one cares about me, look at me! I’m nothing.

I feel a hot rush of wetness fall down my face, opening up the gates to all the pain inside.

“She left me” I whisper to myself as I watch them walk away. I need my mum right now and she’s gone.

It isn’t going to be okay, nothing’s going to be okay.

Jackson was there, yeah he cheated but I can get over that. I can’t be alone anymore. I won’t.

I run over to my desk grabbing my phone and searching for his name in my contacts. Jackson.

“Hey, can we talk? -Dw”

I put my phone on the mattress in front of me as I sit down.

I watch my phone as 20 minutes pass by and nothing.

No one actually cares about me, do they?

The alcohol burns as it makes its way down my throat, leaving a delightful after feeling causing me to have another shot of whiskey.

Crowds of people are everywhere, some dancing, others just talking and drinking.

Where did Tia go? Probably found a guy to flirt or whatever with.

At least I have alcohol. I grab a red solo cup and fill it to the brim with pure whiskey, nothing to smoothen out the burn.

Honestly, I enjoy the way it burns before it warms my chest. I don’t know why people try to cover up the taste with pepsi, cola or something. It tastes fine as is.

Feeling my phone vibrate in the pocket of my too-short jean shorts I pull it out, a text message from Jackson.

“What are you doing right now? -J”

Getting drunk so I feel nothing? I think to myself before replying.

“At a party -Dw”

I take a sip of my drink, awaiting his reply.

“At the benson brothers house? -J”

“Idk, Tia brought me here -Dw”

“You’re hanging with Tia again? -J”

“Why not? Are you coming or not? -Dw”

“Be right there, meet me outside. -J”

Whatever, I thought before taking another shot, grabbing my cup and weaving through the waves of people.

“Hey aren’t you Jackson’s girl?” I hear a deep voice behind me causing me to turn around.

“I’m no one’s ‘girl’ ” I blurt out, alcohol clouding my mind.

“Oh, my bad. I’m Dustin” he smiles.

I look up at him, stunned by the brightest smile I’ve seen in days, accompanied by dimples on each side of his face, and silver eyes that flicker between understanding and something else I can’t figure out. “I’m Dawn.” I smile back at him.

“Are you here by yourself?” he asks

“I came with Tia but she sorta disappeared.” I admit.

“She went off with Zack” He laughs.

“Figured” I shrug, completely forgetting about Jackson.

“Sorry if I’m being blunt but you’re extremely beautiful”

A blush creeps it’s way to my cheeks at his compliment. “Thanks, I guess”

“Wanna dance?” His bright smile grace’s my presence once more.

I return the same megawatt smile. “Sure”

As soon as the words fall of my lips he takes my hand leading me onto the makeshift dance floor before pulling me close enough to notice how good he smells, like freshly baked cinnamon rolls.

His arms wrap around my waist, pulling me close as we sway to the music, I smile up at him as I wrap my arms around his neck, following his lead.

I don’t do this kind of stuff, I never do but why does it feel so good?

“I’ve never really done this” I admit

“Dance?” He asks.

“Dance with a stranger, at a party.” I smile as I shake my head.

“Well I’m glad to be your first” He winks, mischief dancing in his grey eyes.

I immediately understand the innuendo causing me to pull away from him. “Thanks for the dance but I need some air.” I flashed him a small smile before walking away, out the door and into the cool night air.

“Done dancing with pretty boy?”

I spin around to see Jackson standing there in all his glory, His disheveled hair slightly hanging over his face, and those deep piercing eyes staring right at me. “Yeah” I sigh

“Wanna take a walk so we can talk?” he asks.

Wait where did my drink go? Dammit. I must have put it down. “Wait right here, i need to go get something.” I smile before heading inside again, weaving around the people to get to the kitchen

I grab another cup and fill it to the brim before taking a long, much needed sip. I’ll need more for this conversation, I think as I grab a shot glass, filling it and downing it before repeating once more.

Liquid courage as they call it. I giggle to myself before making my way back outside, the cold air instantly hitting me, making my head feel like it’s swimming. Or is it the alcohol?

Right now I don’t care.

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