45 Days

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Chapter 9- The Spiraling Fallout

Amongst all the chaos, Aiden slowly pulls himself back to his feet, obliterated while the room continues to spin, but he eventually regains his balance.

“Why? Why me? Oh, dear God, why me, what have I done to deserve feeling this way all over again? Haven’t I lost enough in my life? You took my parents. You’ve taken the greatest gift given to me. Are you even listening to me, you bastard? Where are your will and might at now? All I see is a world filled with suffering and despair. Is that your ultimate idea of humanity, to bring each other down?”

Aiden clutches his head with one hand and raises his free hand towards the Heavens.

Able to stumble over to his chair. He reaches into his pocket for his cell phone to see it blown up between missed calls and text messages.

Talk to me… I love you n I am sooooooooo sorry…Let me come inside…Aiden, baby doll plz talk to me…How can I make this up to you? Do U hate me now? I chose you…I can’t believe how dumb I am, I don’t deserve your love n-e more…

He struggles to maintain his focus on the bright little screen. Aiden drops his phone and leans back, trying to get the images out of his mind. The picture constantly flashbacks to the sound of Allyssa screaming. Aiden smacks his palms against the side of his head but can’t see anything else even when he opens his eyes.

The thickness in the air sends out an aura that one of his friends can sense. Rey senses something is off but isn’t unsure of what, who, or where but something bad it is he can’t detect in the middle of running errands for his mother.

Getting out his phone while he’s grocery shopping, Rey calls and checks on his mother. Once he’s relieved to know it’s not her, he moves on down the list. When he scrolls across Aiden’s name, the sensation intensifies dramatically.

“Weird, he’s been in such a bad mood lately,” Rey mentions clicking on the call button.

With the phone to his ear, it rings a few times before Aiden finally answers.

“Yo homie, what’s up bub?” He answers to cover the sound of his pain.

“Hey, man, is everything alright? Something hit me, and I’m just checking on everyone. How’s life between you and the lovely miss Ally on your all’s big date day?”

Rey catches the tail end of a sniffle and pauses in his tracks in the middle of the aisle, “Dude, what happened?”

Listening to Aiden’s stutter breathing, Rey stands there ready to get into ass whipping mode.

“Aiden, talk to me man, what’s going on?”

“She wasn’t who I thought she was, bub. I walked in on her having sex with someone in her bedroom.” He explains, forced to hold his composure.

“Yo, Aiden, head on over to the house. We’ll get fuckered up, and that’ll help.”

“I’ve already done some heavy drinking, Cuz. I hit it so hard earlier I blacked out for a bit.”

Rey places the phone away to sigh, his free hand over his eyes in disbelief.

“Alright, well, give me time to get my things done for mom. I’ll be out, man. You ain’t about to suffer all alone. You did that with your folks, and I ain’t about to allow that to happen again.”

Aiden breathes into the phone and takes his time to reply.

“Yeah, come on over bub, I could use some company this time. I just don’t get why Ally would do something like that when I’ve given her everything.”

“Some bitches just don’t want a good thing when they find it. They want an abusive, controlling dickhead but just hold tight, man. I’ll be there in time, later.”

“Peace bub, see ya soon.”

Rey is prepared for an evening of misery and protection since Aiden is like a brother. Rey picks up his favorite beer, Blue Moon, and tries to hurry through his chores.

The longer he thinks about what his best friend is going through makes him want to hunt down both Ally and whoever she slept with to get some answers the hard way.

Running back over the checklist of items his mother needs complete, Rey rushes back to the frig for his beer and places it inside a paper bag. He goes into the living room to inform his mother that he is finished to say that if she needs anything to call.

“Hey, mom, I’m all done. I’m heading out to handle some things. Need me, call me, love you, mom, bye.”

She smiles and waves as she’s wrapped up in her taped soap operas.

Outside he rushes to his Maxima. Rey sends a text message, Yo man, I am on my way, be ready to throw down some games and we ain’t even gotta discuss it if you don’t wanna-Rey.

Starting his car, he shifts over to reverse to haul ass to make sure his best friend will be alright.

He wants to get there in a rush. Rey checks his phone when it dings before pulls away from the house to see a return message.

The front door is unlocked-Aiden.

After Rey arrives, he jiggles the door handle to walk inside as Aiden bangs away on the piano.

“Yo, Aiden, I’m here, man, it’s just me,” Rey announces, making his way at a slow pace.

“Yeah, c’mon back, man, just working on something,” Aiden calls back as he returns to the newest creation stemmed from the pain radiating from his soul.

Rey places his six-pack on the top shelf and takes one out for himself, “Hey, that new skit sounds pretty harsh. How long you been working on it?”

After a pause in the hallway, he waits for Aiden to yell back.

“Since my vision stopped being blurry. Oh, and thanks for coming out, but you didn’t need to. I’m going to be fine, I promise.”

Rey doesn’t hesitate to rebuttal his position on the situation, “I was there when your folks passed. I see you as a brother. Ain’t no way in God’s green Earth am I going to let you feel like this all over again alone.”

Rey makes his way into the music room to lean up against the doorframe sipping on Blue Moon.

“Sounds pretty good man, got any words to go along with it yet?”

Aiden pauses to gaze at Rey. He maintains a hard-cold stern glare, “I got something for it, just shut up and listen.”

Aiden works his way up to the part he has ready for words. In a low tone, he begins with the first part written down.

“Dead in your eyes, you got nowhere to hide. Seeing with my eyes, I was paralyzed. The green envy had me terrified; by now, I hope you’re satisfied. No more lies, no more disguise that you’re dead in my eyes…” Aiden plays, continuing to create more to the song. “Walking out…the door…Leaving my heart sore…My soul, cold to the core…Believing that I can’t live without you…”

Rey stands there, amazed at how fast the song has come together.

“I like it, dude. That’s how you need to do it from now on. Hardcore to the bone and leave nothing off the table.”

Aiden stops and sits there with his eyes fixated on the keys, “Why me? What have I done wrong in life to constantly feel this way?”

“I can’t answer that because I don’t know, man. I do know you don’t deserve to feel this way. If you want, we can go hunt that clown down and whoop his ass.”

Aiden sits there without budging a muscle.

“Normally, I’d say let’s do it, but what’s it worth? I’ll still feel like shit tomorrow with busted knuckles.”

Rey and Aiden hear someone enter the house followed by a call waiting for an answer when Rey realized he forgot to lock the door, “Hey, is anyone home?”

“What the fuck is she doing here?” Aiden growls, cracking his knuckles.

Up from the bench, Aiden motions for Rey to move so he can kick out the unwelcomed guest.

“Get out now!” He warns with eyes locked on his unwanted intruder.

“Hey, I’m here to find out your side of things. Just calm down and listen, please. I warned Ally that if she did this that it would have a pretty bad outcome. I’m on your side, I swear.” Addie explains with her hands out as a sign of no aggression.

“You knew!” Aiden groans, grinding his teeth with that statement.

Addie stands her ground, keeping their eyes locked. She slowly lowers her hands.

“I knew she was talking to him from time to time. I threatened to beat his ass for you. Look, I am so sorry you had to find out the way you did. As I said, I am here for you, not her. She’s stuck at my place. I even have her keys on me so she can’t show up here again.”

Rey takes Aiden’s shoulder to talk some sense into his boy and clinches down on the grip.

“Hey, let her come inside and get a seat and let’s hear her out. Be polite and calm down for a minute before you do or say something you’ll regret.”

That’s all it takes for Aiden to toss his arms up in agreement and breaks from the staredown to take a seat in his recliner. Addie and Rey both take a seat on the couch.

“Hey, before I get comfy, care for a beer?” Rey offers, looking at the nearly empty bottle.

“Sure, I won’t turn down a free beer,” Addie tells him.

Rey takes off to the kitchen, hoping that the fireworks don’t explode in the living room while he’s out of the room.

“I don’t get why you’re here. You should be on Ally’s side, not mine.” Aiden begins interlocking his fingers over his stomach.

“Like I said, I warned her. She had been having doubts about y’all for some time now. I told her to talk to you, but obviously, she didn’t listen. All I know is that she is plum tore up right now. Just like you, she’s drunk hurting. Give it a day or two and talk to her, please.”

Rey returns from the kitchen and hands Addie Addie beer after he hands Aiden water to keep him hydrated after the heavy drinking.

“Good, let her feel that way. She brought this on herself, I’ve been nothing less than gold to her, and this is the thanks I get in return. She royally messed up. If she didn’t feel what she said, then she should’ve said something and not sneak around with some other guy.”

Chugging part of the Blue Moon down, Addie collects her thoughts.

“You’re right, Aiden. She should have been an adult. She went through this with the guy she dated right before you came along. You went through that storm with your ex. She realized that she messed up alright, so just chill and talk to me, well, talk to us.”

“Yeah, take a minute to process it all before you react. I get it you’re hurting, dawg, and it sucks. Like I said, you want to hunt this son of a bitch down, and we’ll whip his ass from here to kingdom come. I got your back, always have and always will.”

Looking over to Rey, a surprise comes from Addie’s response, “Count me in if you’re dead serious. I hate this bastard more than you know. He’s done this to several friends of mine, and now I wanna rip off his balls and shove them straight up his ass with a dull, rusty knife.”

Aiden is taken away by the gesture.

“Come on, I know where he lives, let’s drag him out into the middle of the street and stomp a mudhole in his ass!” She continues as the inferno burns in her eyes.

“Let’s go!” Aiden states on his feet and stumbles for a second.

“Leave your cars here. See, he doesn’t know mine. Plus, you two have sports cars. See, I’m smart; I have the only four-door sports car here.” Rey says.

Aiden takes his keys from the wall. He’s the first out the door to wait for Addie and Rey.

“You for real gonna help me beat his ass?” Aiden slurs, locking his front door.

“Hell yes, son, I hate Sam to no end.” Addie expresses between Rey and Aiden to the Maxima.

Backing away from the house, Addie receives a text, Hey, where are you and what are you doing? She reads to herself in the back seat.

“Just out and about, don’t worry, I will be back eventually. Just chill and sober up.” She whispers as she types back to Ally.

The three of them drive to Nitro, which feels like an eternity. When they finally merge off the interstate, the three of them creep up along the destination to look for Sam’s truck.

“He’s not here, but he’ll return. When he does, we’ll be ready to pounce.” Addie states, sliding down to get comfy in the backseat.

Nearly a half-hour goes by in silence before they see any trucks pull up along the street. When Addie points out that it isn’t him, the patience in the car begins to dwindle.

“I don’t think he’s coming anytime,” Rey mentions, focused on the task at hand.

“Just keep waiting. He’ll show up, and when he does, pow!” Addie mentions, impatient.

They sit and wait for another twenty minutes before Addie receives a message from Ally.

Hey, I’m done waiting for you to show up with my keys. Sam showed up. I’m going to get a ride with him to eat. So I’ll be back soon. I’ll lock your door. Later-Ally.”

“Son of a bitch!” She lets slip out as the boys look back at her.

“What?” Rey asks.

“That sorry bastard is at my apartment with Ally. Let’s go!” Addie screams, pissed off that Ally would stoop that low to bring him to her apartment.

Aiden doesn’t say a word the entire way there.

“Wait…If she chose Aiden, why is she out with him?” Rey wonders out loud as they pull up along the curb.

“I don’t know, but once we’re there, let me go unlock my apartment door. I’ll keep Ally inside once he drops her off. That way, you two can beat his ass.” She informs able to concoct a plan.

They arrive, and Addie runs up to the door. She begins to slide the key into the lock when it comes open.

“I knew that would lure you back.” Ally admits.

“You bitch, we ran back from Nitro worried about you!”

Addie returns to the car feeling betrayed and rubs her eyes with her hand.

“False alarm, she played a card that got me back here. Listen, I need to get my car. I know you don’t want her around you or on your property. So, would you care if she stays quiet to ride with us and I get my car? We’ll leave as soon as we get there.” Addie asks Aiden with her hands on his arm to soothe his pain.

“She can ride with y’all. I’m going to take a walk.” He admits when he opens the door as Addie steps back.

“Sweetie, it’s like ten degrees out here. You left without a coat. You can wait in my apartment if you want. I don’t wanna see you get sick.” She offers and embraces Aiden.

Able to fight back the tears, he returns a half-assed hug and doesn’t say a word. The embrace breaks when Aiden places his hands on her hips shortly after hearing footsteps.

“Aiden…” Ally mutters when she stops dead in her tracks.

“I have nothing to say to you.” He says, turning to walk away.

An opportunity opens with his back turned. Ally rushes as they crash onto the concrete.

“You’re going to listen to me!” She says with all of her weight on his body.

“Let me go, Ally. I’m not doing this.” He warns, using his strength to pick her up.

“I said we’re going to talk, and if you don’t talk, then just stand there and at least let me say I am sorry.”

Aiden’s body shakes in anger. He tries to break her grip from around his waist—Addie motions him to calm down. Aiden allows Ally have her way.

Aiden puts his arms around Ally in a single breath, and nothing is said when she cries uncontrollably. They hug in what they both know could be the final time they hold each other up until Addie takes Ally by the shoulder.

“Come on, girl, we got to go.”

She’s able to remove Ally from Aiden’s arms.

“I’m sorry, I love you.” Ally whimpers softly, wiping away the tears.

“You’re more than welcome to stay warm in my place until Rey gets back.” Addie offers playing peacemaker.

“Nah, I think I’m gonna go find me a bite to eat while y’all are gone,” Aiden mutters, walking away like a piece of his soul died.

“If you ever need anything, I’m just a text away.” Addie reminds him as she walks with Ally over to the Maxima.

“Thanks…” he replies and walks away to find anywhere to eat.

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