College Cutbacks: Sophomore Year Book IV

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Summary

Emery has left Pennbrook University for good. After Roman's betrayal and Lewis's infidelity, Emery can't bring herself to return to the treacherous house. Can an old friend convince her to put her pride aside for her future or will Emery let the anguish and despair consume her? Join her through the tough decisions she'll have to finally face in Book IV of this series. Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. Names, locations, characters, businesses, events, places, and/or incidents are all fictional or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual people, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental. This book is not to be copied or used in whole or in part under any circumstances. Warning: Contains violent, abusive, and sexual content. May trigger some readers.

Genre:
Romance / Drama
Author:
A. L. Shoni
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
25
Rating:
4.8 55 reviews
Age Rating:
18+

Sending Me Back

Emery's POV
Sleep has been evading me lately. Every time I close my eyes, I see Lewis and Ali fucking and my heart breaks all over again. What my prick of a stepfather did to me couldn’t compare to what Lewis had done and the worse part is that Roman instigated it. I couldn’t wrap my head around it. Out of all the things Lewis could have done, he gets drunk and fucks Ali. The way he stared into my eyes while he did it let me know that he knew what he was doing. He wasn’t that drunk. It’s been a whole summer and I couldn’t remember what happiness felt like. And for a moment there, with everything that had happened to me, I was actually happy. Then it was ripped away from me in a matter of minutes. I really did love him. I still love him. I had no idea when this pain in my chest will go away. When I would finally stop swallowing sobs at the thought of him? When I will be able to be happy again? What will I do if I see him again? I flipped over on the couch, pulling the cover over my head, burying my face into the cushion. My tears soaked the fabric as I recalled that night.


Flashback

I pressed hard on the gas pedal to get as far away from here as possible. I hated them. I gritted my teeth and let out a pain-filled scream. I hit the steering wheel a couple of times with my hand to relieve some of my frustration.

Why was I so stupid? Why couldn’t I just focus on my classes? But no. I get myself roped in all this drama.

Tears poured from my eyes, my breathing became shallow, and stomach became weak. I pulled into an empty parking lot that was attached to an abandoned grocery store. I opened the door, leaning out, and spilled the little I had in my stomach. I dry heaved for a minute or two because I haven’t been eating much. I grabbed some napkins from my glove compartment, wiping my mouth. Sobs shook my body. Why did it have to hurt this bad?

I took out my phone and texted the only person I had left right now.

Emery: Ryan, I’m coming home.

Ryan: Are you ok? What’s wrong?

Emery: We’ll talk when I get there.

My phone dinged. It must be Ryan again. Wrong!

Eli: Where are you! Roman and Lewis are fighting again! You need to get here fast!

Damion: This is not good, Em. What did Roman do this time?

Eli: Where the hell are you! What the hell is Ali talking about ‘she finally got Lewis’? Pick up your phone!

Damion: Em, where are you? I’m getting worried. Things here are getting worse... I’m sorry about Lewis.

Eli: Where are you, Em? I’m coming to get you!

Eli: Em, don’t leave. We’ll work something out. We’ll get an apartment together. Just don’t leave.

Roman: Please come back. I need you.

Roman: Don’t do this, Emery.

Kyle: Eli told me what happened. I’m so sorry. Just let me know you’re ok so I can tell them. They’re really freaking out.

I decided to text him back. Damion and Eli deserved that much. My phone continuously rang. I ignored the calls.

Emery: Kyle, tell them I’m ok, but I’m never coming back there.

With that, I chucked my phone out the window and watched it smash into the side of the brick building, leaving it in shatters. I pulled away and headed home. My real home.

Flashback Ends

“Emery, get up,” Ryan said, kicking the couch.

“I’m not asleep,” I mumbled.

“You’ve been like this all summer. You’re barely eating, you don’t leave the house, and I’m not really complaining, but you been wearing my clothes and haven’t attempted to buy any of your own. You have to talk to me.”

I huffed, throwing the cover off of me and sat up, showing off my newly reddened, puffy eyes. I rubbed my eyes with my palms, hoping that will help hide the tears threatening to spill.

He plopped down next to me. “I get it. They are fucking assholes and I want to go there and kill them myself, but I know it wouldn’t make you feel better.”

“You’re wrong. I would feel a lot better.”

He looked at me disbelievingly. “No. You won’t. I know because I know you. You know, you can’t stay here.”

“What? Are you kicking me out for being depressed and being stupid," I said expressionlessly. It was either pain or numbness. Right now, I just felt empty. I just didn’t feel like myself anymore. It felt like the old me was watching the new me, this shell of a person, turn into nothing.

“No. I’m kicking you out because I’m not letting you ruin your future over a couple of self-centered fuckers that only thought about themselves in the situation. You made it out of a terrible situation to make a better life for yourself. You can’t give that up.”

“How do I face them? How do I look into the eyes of the people who contributed to my heartbreaking- no, my heart demolishing into a puff of smoke- every day? How do I live with these people and not think of what they’ve done?” My tears betrayed me and my voice cracked.

Ryan grabbed my hand, pulling me to lean on him. He kissed the top of my head. “You have to face them one day.”

“I don’t want to, okay! I want to disappear and never look into those blue or green eyes ever again! I don’t want to see that bitch all over him like I meant nothing to him while he flaunts her around! I don’t want that bastard’s apology for going down on me, knowing I had a boyfriend!” I dropped my head in my hands to take a breather. My voice lowered to a whisper, “I just don’t know if I can.”

“I know you can. You are strong and you will get through this. Time heals all things.”

“I wish it would happen faster because it feels like this is never going away and I’m starting to give up.” I stared at the wall in front of me. It only made my life play in front of me like a projector. Tears slid down my cheeks and I quickly swiped them away.

“It’s going to be fine. You’ve already finished your classes online. You’re lucky the professors were sympathetic to you being in the hospital and let you take your finals online.” He took a deep breath. “Look, you already registered for your classes and rehousing. Just try it out and if it doesn’t work out, I will help you move in here with me.”

“Promise?”

“You actually have to try. No half-assing.”

“Okay. I’ll try.”

I wasn't going to try at all.

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