Crossroads: Book 1

All Rights Reserved ©

Chapter 99


They are chatting like it’s any other normal day. It’s sickening, degrading, and heartbreaking. While they laugh about a recent football game, my world is crashing down.

Mike’s eyes flitter from my father to me. His smile falters as he notices my anger, hurt, and betrayal.

“Elena, what’s wrong?” He asks like he cares. But I know better.

My father turns around and takes note of the steady tears falling from my face. He pities me with his solemn expression. “Elena, sweetheart?”

There is so much I want to say, yet I can’t seem to say anything past the lump in my throat. I want so badly to yell at them, to put them in their place, to hurt them as they have hurt me - yet there are no words.

Mike stands up from the table to walk over to me slowly, and I can’t even move. How messed up is that? My feet are literally frozen. Even though I am hot with rage - I can feel every inch of me grow cold. It’s not until he reaches for me that I find my voice.

“How could you?” My voice cracks on a whisper as I pull away from his infected touch. That’s what it feels like. I feel like I’ve been infected with a growing disease, a disease that eats away at my heart form the inside out.

Something in his eyes shifts; he knows exactly what I’m talking about. My father stands up to face us. “Elena, honey, we can explain,” he says on defense, ready to make the problem go away. I’m not letting him get off that easily. “You were never were supposed to find out.” He says it more to himself than to me.

“I trusted you. Both of you!” I yell at the two men that held my heart.

“Elena, sweetheart, just calm down. We can talk about this. We will share everything with you –” My father says with haste while Mike clenches his jaw in silence.

With rising heat from my blood, reaching an all-time boiling point, I chuck the phone at my dad. “I already know everything,” I spit.

He sloppily catches the phone and looks down at the video, those deep secretive dark brown eyes cut to mine. “Who sent this to you?” He’s worried, but I don’t care. My heart is in a million pieces under the weight of the man next to him.

The man that seems unable to find his words.

“It doesn’t matter who did. What matters is the fact that you both lied to me!” I cut my sights to Mike. “I loved you, I really loved you, and this whole time, you were playing me. I thought you loved me. I was just a job to you!”

Mike tries to reach for me once more, and I jerk myself away from him. His eyes look into mine, begging for mercy. He’s not going to get it. “I do love you, Elena. I’ve loved you through all of it. You have to believe me. We can talk about this. Forgive me, please?”

Right on time, a black dodge rolls into the driveway saving me from further humiliation. Mike and my father turn around at the sound of the engine outside. I take the opportunity to run past them for the door.

“Elena!” Mike grabs my arm. “Don’t leave me, please. Don’t go with him.”

I yank my arm free and slap him. Hard. The pain on his face gives me a sickening amount of satisfaction. Without another word, I run past the threshold towards Declan’s car. For Declan’s sake, I’m glad he stayed in it.

Once I’m in the car, I see Mike with his face twisting in anger and my father looking crushed as they rush their way towards us. “Go! Go, go, go!” I yell for Declan to get out of here. Mike is near the passenger side’s handle when Declan shifts into reverse and slams his foot on the gas.

“Elena!” Mike’s scream is muffled by the interior walls of the Dodge Charger. I glance out the window to see my dad standing there looking how I feel while Mike falls to his knees as we drive away.

“Do you want to talk about it?” Declan asks as he takes his eyes off the road long enough to look at my tear-stained face.

“They lied to me,” I can barely get the words out. “My dad hired Mike to watch over me while he looks for a criminal. It’s why we moved down here. We didn’t move here, so my dad would have a safer job. We moved here because my dad was working on a case.”

“Shit.” Declan’s hand tightens on the wheel. “Are you okay?”

Not wanting to talk about it anymore, I suggest, “Just get me out of here.” I lean my head against the window wishing all of this is just a bad dream.

In silence, he takes me back to his mansion of a house. On second thought, maybe I shouldn’t be here either. This place doesn’t exactly hold a fond memory for me, but I have nowhere else to go.

Declan puts the car in park near the front door; then, he leads me into the house. “We have lots of spare rooms. I’m sure my dad won’t mind that you’ll be here,” he says over his shoulder as he takes me up the familiar staircase. I follow him down the hall, and then we turn a corner. We walk inside a spacious guest bedroom with a rose-colored plush rug, a white duvet half-covered with lush rose-colored decorative pillows, and a cherry oak vanity set in the far corner.

Declan points to a door. “You have your own bathroom through that door. My bedroom is just on the side if you need anything.”

“Thank you,” I say to him, grateful that I have someone I can count on who is truly a friend to me and not caught up in my father’s lies.

“Are you hungry? I could make you something,” he offers with a warm smile. I just nod my head as the weight of the day starts to push my shoulders into the ground.

“I think I’m going to lie down for a bit. Is that okay?” I ask.

“Sure, of course. I’ll make you some dinner; you can rest while I make it for you.” His comforting touch takes hold of my shoulder. “I’m here for you, okay?”

I just nod my head once more. As soon as he leaves, my heavy feet carry me to the inviting bed. I crawl on top and hug my knees. Before I know it, my body rocks with sadness as pain leaves my body through tears, soaking the expensive duvet.

I open my eyes, and it’s dark in the room. How long have I been out? Declan might have some food waiting for me. I wipe the sleep and the dried tears away from my eyes then swing my legs over the bed to land on the fluffy carpet. I stretch my hands over my head, and the realization of the day hits me again.

It was a lie. He never loved me.

The weight of the bracelet is heavy on my wrist; I graze it with my fingertips. Was all of it a lie?

I’m angry all over again. I hate him.

Instead of hating my father, I hate myself more. I should have seen the signs. I should have paid better attention.

My feet take me to the bathroom, and I flick the switch for the light, but it doesn’t work. I flip it on and off again—still nothing. I groan into the room at the irony. I escaped the consuming darkness of my house to literally be in a dark house.

A creak sounds behind me, but before I’m able to turn around, a hand clasps over my mouth with a rag while an arm takes hold around my body. I’m pushed against another hard figure as I fight and scream to get away, but the hold is too tight, a rough rag muffles my screams.

It’s no use. My mind falls into a haze. My eyes grow heavy. My body falls limp as everything goes black.

Continue Reading Next Chapter

About Us

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered publisher, providing a platform to discover hidden talents and turn them into globally successful authors. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books our readers love most on our sister app, GALATEA and other formats.