The Wrath of Ashton
A new year presents new challenges. I never thought I would find myself in this position but I'm ready for whatever comes next. When the Greek Games start, I'll have an opportunity to prove to everyone that Alpha Delta Phi isn't a fuck up. We're stronger together but first, I've got to acknowledge the reality of my current situation. Ashton's going to kill me.
I watched as the police exited my dull hospital room after questioning me about Rich and what had happened between us in my dorm room. I was staring at the ceiling trying not to focus on what just occurred and ease my mind. I heard a knock at my door and slowly sat up. For some reason, my body was still on overdrive and I was on high alert. I guess I was a bit frightened from my attack but I calmed at the image of Windy opening my door. I smiled at her and she damn near flew into my arms.
“Thank God, you’re okay! I was worried about you. I tried to wake you up but your RA told me not to move you because she thought your neck might have been broken. Jesus, from now on I have to keep you in my sight at all times!” she exclaimed, kissing all over my face.
I laughed at how ridiculous she sounded but if the shoe was on the other foot, I would probably be saying the same thing as her right now. Losing Windy was not an option in my mind and I know she felt the same.
“I’m okay, Win. I’m a little off balance and my head hurts but I’m ok. What happened after I blacked out?” I asked, scared of the answer.
“A few guys dragged Rich out of your room and called campus security. They hauled him off to the police, which is why they were in here questioning you just a few minutes ago. There’s still no word about if Reed was involved but the guys are back at the house keeping an eye on things. Rich might not get off for your assault but I don’t know if Scooby is going to speak up yet about him. And don’t worry, none of us told Jacob about what happened tonight,” she replied.
I sighed with relief and saw the door open again as Asya, Taylor, and Scooby stepped inside. Asya pulled me into a hug and Taylor sat down in a chair adjacent from my bed next to Scooby.
“Cameron Bailey, why does stuff like this always seem to happen to you? You are a very strange freshmen,” Asya said, smirking at me.
“I have a very strange life, that’s why. I didn’t mean to worry you guys. I had everything under control for awhile until he knocked the wind out of me. I just didn’t want him to hurt Windy. He’s crazy, I’ll tell you that. The stuff he was saying was just...insane. I don’t even know where to start,” I groaned.
Scooby fidgeted slightly in her chair and I noticed how uncomfortable she looked. “Scoobs, what’s wrong?” I asked.
She frowned and then exhaled sharply before saying, “Rich and I have a past, Cameron. We were together at one point...before I was with Jacob.”
My jaw dropped and I stared over at her in shock. I was a bit surprised by her words but everything was starting to make sense. No wonder Rich had made that comment about Bailey’s ‘taking’ everything from someone else. Jacob had obviously been the other guy in their relationship, thus starting a spiral of drama that I was now a part of.
“Nice job, Jake,” I said to myself.
“Don’t blame Jacob, Cameron. Rich and I weren’t happy together in any sense of the word. We hardly dated for very long but he was very attached. He wanted complete control in our relationship and then...I met Jacob. He was the exact opposite of Rich. I don’t know when I began developing feelings for him but I didn’t tell him the truth about Rich and I. On our first date, Rich found Jacob and I together and I told him the entire story. I thought he was going to just leave well enough alone but your brother was persistent,” she explained.
“Is that why you ended up on our couch crying yourself to sleep that night?” Taylor asked.
Scooby nodded and Windy shyly looked away. “Yeah, let’s not talking about crying on the couch anymore. I think we might need a new couch anyway,” she scoffed.
I stared over at her but decided to ignore her statement. “So...Jake just kept trying to be with you regardless of Rich? He must have really liked you, Scooby because it’s not like my brothers to chase a female. I think I understand now. Reed knew all of this?” I asked.
Scooby nodded once more and I was about to speak until the door opened again and my eyes widened as Heather and Anna walked inside my room. Heather gushed over me with tears still in her eyes and pulled me roughly against her side. She ran her hand over my hair and face and I tried to keep the glare that was present in my eyes from showing.
“Baby, I was so worried! Are you okay? I swear I’ll fucking tear Rich a new asshole for touching my sweetheart?” she mewed.
I pulled away from her and groaned in annoyance. “Heather, not that I’m not thrilled to see you, but what are you doing here?” I asked.
“I came to make sure you were ok, duh. Just because we aren’t fucking anymore doesn’t mean I don’t care for you. How shallow would that make me seem?” she replied.
“Mhm. You have a point but we haven’t talked in awhile. It’s actually been a long time. I told you I didn’t want to see you again, ever. Even if I’m in the hospital,” I said sharply.
“I guess some people are hard of hearing,” Anna mumbled, glancing over at me. I smiled and pulled her towards me. Anna laughed and I rubbed my face into her stomach.
“I’m glad to see you’re alive and well. I would have been the last person to see you and that would have haunted me,” she said softly in my hair.
“I know. I’m sorry I didn’t fight hard enough. I didn’t leave though. I’m still here,” I replied.
Anna looked down at me and I noticed someone was missing from my small reunion.
“Where’s Juno?” I asked.
“She went back to the house with Bishop to tell the boys you were okay. You’re not being discharged until tomorrow morning,” Scooby replied.
I frowned and leaned back against my pillows. “I want to leave now. I feel fine,” I grumbled.
“Um, no. Sebastian told us that you suffered a mild concussion. You have bruised ribs, and you need time to heal. You are staying in this bed until the nurse says otherwise,” Windy exclaimed, pointing at me.
I knew I wasn’t going to win against her and I watched as everyone slowly filed out of the room after saying their goodbyes and wishing me well. Heather was one of the first to leave after what I had said to her. Anna and Windy were still sitting in opposite sides of the room in chairs and I decided to fall back to sleep.
When I awoke, Windy was asleep in her chair and Anna was awake scrolling away on her laptop. I smiled at the image and turned to face her.
“Go home. You can work better at your desk,” I said, my voice hoarse from sleep.
Anna smiled but didn’t take her eyes off of her computer screen. “You’re supposed to be sleep. Go back to sleep. I am perfectly fine working from here. I brought my laptop on purpose,” she responded.
“You’re not going to leave until I leave with you, huh? You’re that adamant?” I asked.
“It’s the only way I’ll know you’re healthy.”
“Bull shit. Windy is here for a reason. I’m awake now and you can see that I’m healthy. Finals are coming up and you need to study. I’ll be ok.”
“Cameron, I rather be here than anywhere else right now.”
“Why? I’m your-”
“Yes, you’re my friend. That’s what you always say. You’re my friend and I appreciate you for that. Now, let me be a good friend and stay here with you until I know you aren’t going to leave me again.”
“Leave...you...again? Anna, what do you mean by that?”
“You know exactly what I mean by that, Cameron. Don’t play this game with me.”
“What are you saying, Anna?”
Anna closed her laptop and stuffed it back into her bag in a hurry. She turned to face me and a small smile slipped across her lips.
“Nevermind. You’re right. I should go. Text me when you’re back home okay? I’ll see you next fall semester,” she said, opening my door.
“Fall semester? What? Anna, wait!”
I climbed out of my bed and hissed in pain as my weight buckled once my feet hit the ground but I continued after her. I watched her walk down the hall and leaned against the wall.
“Anna, wait!” I yelled. She stopped in her tracks and turned back around. When she saw me leaning against the wall, she quickly ran towards me.
“Cameron, are you crazy? Get back in bed now!” she said, helping support my weight.
“I don’t want to wait until next fall to see you. Why would you say that? Why would you do that?” I asked, ignoring her words.
“Because I have to, Cameron. Because you have enough on your plate and I refuse to cause you anymore confusion. I don’t want to stress you out anymore than you already are.”
“How would you do that? You’re my stress relief, Anna. You calm me down. You’re important to me.”
“But not as important as other people. Not as important as Windy.”
“What does Windy have to do with any of this?”
“Because she loves you! And I love you! And you can’t have both Cameron. I won’t make you choice because I clearly already know who you want. It’s who you’ve always wanted. I can’t be put in this pain anymore. I love you.”
Anna leaned against me planted a soft kiss on my cheek. I noticed a few tears falling down her face and I reached out for her but she was racing down the hall before I could say another word. I hobbled back into the room and laid down on the bed. My head was all over the place and I felt a soft familiar hand resting on my arm.
I clinched my hand into a fist and closed my eyes. I promised myself she would never see this part of me but I couldn’t promise that anymore. I felt hot tears running down my face and before I could process what was happening, I was sobbing into my pillow. I felt her hand rubbing my back and whispering sweet words into my ear. I grabbed at her hand and gently pulled her into the bed with me.
Windy cuddled against my side and eventually, I calmed down enough to just look up at the ceiling. I knew the words were up in the air and I was going to have to speak them soon or maybe Windy would beat me to the punch. I didn’t want to speak at that moment. I just wanted to enjoy her embrace and the fact that she was still here with me. She was always there when I needed her to be. A simple fact that I loved more and more about her every day.
“I love you, Windy. I don’t think it’s possible to love someone else as much as I love you,” I finally said, feeling a wave of relief wash over me.
Windy leaned up and gently wiped away a tear with her thumb. “I know the feeling,” she said softly. I finally looked at her and realized that she had been crying as well. I rolled over to face her with panic etched across my face but she laughed and shook her head.
“Don’t worry about these. I just thought I was going to lose you again for a moment. A part of me thought you were going to choose Anna when you crawled out of this bed.”
“You were awake.”
“I was but I wasn’t going to interrupt a moment between you and Anna. It wasn’t my place. Besides, you needed to hear what she had to say. I think you may just agree with her.”
“Do you think I love her...the way I love you?” I asked.
Windy shook her head and smiled. “I know there is no one you love as much as me, Cameron,” she replied. I pulled her against me and cupped her face in my hands as I planted a chaste kiss softly on her lips. She wrapped her arm around my waist and I heard the door open with a force strong enough to knock it off its hinges.
“You better still be alive or so help me!”
The sound of Ashton’s voice caused me to quickly sit up and stare incredulously in her direction. My jaw dropped before a bright smile etched across my face.
“Ashton! You’re home!” I exclaimed happily. I tried to crawl out of the bed but Windy pulled me back down.
“You are on bed rest, remember? No moving,” she scolded.
“But it’s my sister and I haven’t seen her in months,” I whined.
Ashton ran her fingers through my hair and then roughly yanked it.
“Ow! What was that for? I was even about to say I missed you but I won’t now.”
“I heard you all have been bullshitting since I left. Jacob is in rehab. I haven’t heard from Sebastian. Bishop almost quit his job and you’re in the hospital. What the fuck have you all been doing?” she yelled, glaring down at me.
“It’s been a rough year, Ashton. I can’t really explain it all,” I sighed.
“Oh please do try...and why is Windy Edwards-Fields in your bed? Were you two kissing? Are you fucking Windy because if you are that is priceless, Cameron. I hope you know Jacob was fucking a sorority girl too. The same sorority that Windy is in actually. How ironic,” she teased.
Windy crawled out of the bed and rolled her eyes. “Nice to see you again, Ashton,” she mumbled.
“Likewise. Cameron, are you alright? I’m having you discharged early so that we can pick up Jacob from the rehabilitation center. It’s time we’ve had another family meeting. God knows we need one,” she replied.
“I’m fine, just let me get dressed.”
“Good. I’ll be in the hallway. Meet me out there when you are done.”
With that, Ashton turned on her heels and walked out of the room. I moved to get dressed but felt Windy’s hand running down my back. I smiled and turned around to face her.
“Really? You’re turned on right now?”
“Oddly enough, yes. I was scared last night. Allow me to touch you all I want!”
I laughed and held her closer to me. I felt Windy’s hands move over my body. Down my back and over my shoulders they ran until she reached up and played with the hairs at the base of my neck.
“I don’t want you out of my sight. I’m terrified really. Rich was crazy enough to...I don’t even want to think about it. You are so important to me, Cameron,” she whispered. I pressed my forehead against hers and breathed her scent in. We stood there in comfortable silence for a few moments until she let me go and I began to get dressed. Once I was dressed, I turned towards Windy and pressed her into the door. I kissed down her neck and back upwards to her lips. She moaned into the kiss and grabbed at my shirt. I leaned closer into her and grabbed her ass in my hand.
Before things could progress any further, I pulled away and stared down at her puffy red lips and hooded gaze. “I just needed to prove to you that I am 100% ok. That’s just my service report. What do you think?” I asked, smirking at her.
“I think you’re in for a complete recovery,” she replied, her voice husky. I laughed and kissed her forehead.
“You mean so much to me, Windy. It’s not even funny. Alright, I’m leaving with Ashton. Let the girls know I’m fine. Love you.” I opened the door to my room and walked down the hall behind Ashton before hearing a soft, “Love you too,” as I walked away.
Picking up Jacob was one of the most liberating things I’ve done in awhile. I didn’t know how much I missed him until I saw his smiling face jogging towards Ashton’s car. I climbed out of the back seat, cautious not to hurt myself any more than I already was, and wrapped my arms around his neck. Jacob laughed and patted my back.
“God, it’s good to see you, Cam. How is everyone? I can’t wait to be back home,” he exclaimed but his face dropped at the glare Ashton was delivering from the front seat.
“Oh shit. H-Hey Ash. How was the trip?”
“Get in the fucking car, Jacob.”
I crawled back into the backseat and watched Jacob take a seat in the front next to Ashton. He appeared nervous and I didn’t blame him. Ashton looked like she was ready to explode with anger. After all, these people were supposed to be my guardians for these past couple of months and when she gets back, I’m in the fucking hospital. Yeah, that’s a pretty bad look for them.
Ashton drove us to Bishop’s apartment and Jacob and I exchanged a look before glancing back at her. “Uh, Ash, have you spoken to Bishop yet?” I asked her.
“Nope. He hasn’t returned my calls so I’m dropping by and I’m going to strangle him and I’m going to strangle Bastian because he hasn’t called me back either! Come on,” she yelled, slamming her door in anger.
Jacob laughed and I groaned in annoyance. “Oh, this is going to be funny,” he said.
“Fuck, she is going to kill them!”
Jacob ran after her and I tried to keep up with the both of them. I thought the idea of warning Bishop and Sebastian would possibly help them deal with the wrath of Ashton but I was too late. She was already turning the knob and using her spare key to enter the apartment building.
“Shit,” I mumbled under my breath.
“Bishop Michael Bailey, you better be fucking dead because I am going to fucking kill you!” she yelled.
Bishop jumped off of the couch with his face completely pale and looked at the three of us.
“Jesus, Ashton when the hell did you get a spare key?” he asked.
“When I helped you buy this place, that’s when! Why the fuck has nobody told me what the hell is going on? I come back home and our little sister is in the hospital and Jacob is in fucking rehab. I heard he almost got expelled. What have you been doing, Bishop? I told you to watch them!” she yelled.
“Ash, I’m sorry. Can you please be quiet?” he whispered, walking towards her.
“For what? What have you done now? And where the fuck is Sebastian?”
“I’m right here, Ashton.”
I watched Sebastian walk into the room from the back and stand next to the wall. Bishop glanced over at his brother and I smiled for a moment. I had missed this feeling even within the chaos of the situation. We were all back together again and that’s all that mattered.
“What’s all that noise?” Rhea yawned, coming around the corner rubbing her eyes and wearing nothing but Sebastian’s shirt.
My heart stopped and everyone in the room grew quiet. Ashton’s face turned completely red and I felt Jacob move me out of the way while Bishop stood in front of Ashton.
“Ash, relax for a moment. Just breathe. I can explain. I’ll tell you everything,” he rambled.
“Mommy!” Renton yelled, running into the room and grabbing onto Rhea’s leg.
There was no way that Ashton wasn’t going to be able to recognize the features that Renton and Sebastian shared. Rhea smiled sheepishly and Sebastian slowly walked towards his sister.
“Ashton, this is my son, Renton. He’s three-years-old and Rhea told me about him a few months ago. I know this is a lot to take in but-”
Ashton slapped him hard across his face and Sebastian flew back as she set up to throw a few more hits at him. Rhea quickly picked up Renton and took him in her room as Ashton yelled every curse word she could find at him.
Bishop and Jacob separated the two and I sat down on the couch and watched them go at it.
“Ow! Chill out, Ashton. I’m not a fucking child anymore!” Sebastian yelled.
“Fuck you! You behave like a child! And now you have a child and didn’t even have the balls to tell me!”
“I was afraid, alright! But he means the world to me. He’s my fucking son! He’s my family! You don’t know how scary that is to me. The thought of losing him...and even her. It kills me inside, Ash. It really does. It’s everything mom and dad said it would be and I feel it everyday. So forgive me for not telling you. You’re an aunt now, Ash. Congratulations,” he said.
Ashton looked at him and then sighed. “You have all managed to fuck shit up. I’m quite proud of you all actually. But now I’m back home and we are going to clean this up for once and for all. I’m done with this. It’s time to get our lives back in shape,” she claimed.
I smiled and stood up at that notation. “It’s about time someone said it! That’s what I’ve been saying this entire time. I’m ready whenever you are,” I said.
Bishop stretched and nodded. “Fine, whatever. You’re right,” he agreed.
Jacob chuckled before wrapping his arm around Bishop and Sebastian’s necks. “Oh, this is great! The fearsome five back together again! Fucking ace,” he said, smiling.
Sebastian just groaned and turned back around to go see Rhea and Renton.
Ashton looked at me and sat down on the couch, pulling me down next to her. “We have a lot of work to do, Cameron,” she sighed.
“I think it’s good. Mom and dad would want that,” I replied.
Sebastian and Bishop walked back into the room and we all sat down on the couch together. Jacob grabbed a few beers from the fridge and tossed them around to all of us. I caught the beer in my hands and popped it open, taking a swig and then cringing a bit.
We all sat there and enjoyed the comfortable silence and I heard Jacob chuckle again. “I remember that time when mom took us to the zoo and Ashton got upset and started crying because there were no giraffes there,” he said.
I laughed and so did Sebastian while Ashton sat pouting. “Oh well, I remember when dad told you Santa Claus didn’t exist and you refused to leave your room until Santa dropped you off presents, so dad had to dress up as him and come to your door,” she countered.
Bishop laughed at that one and I tried to hide my giggle behind my hand. “I remember when mom took us to Cancun for a business trip and found out Bishop and Becara were fucking,” Sebastian said, smirking.
Bishop glared at him and tossed his pillow at his face. “Fuck you. I’ll get her back,” he groaned, staring up at the ceiling.
“We’ll see about that. You know what I remember?” I said, looking around the circle at everyone.
“What?” Sebastian asked.
“I remember...when mom and dad told me I was their last blessing. Their last smile to this world. The last great thing they ever did and they weren’t talking about mom’s business. They were talking about us. Everything we ever did, every fuck up, every mistake, was still great to them...because we were their children. They were us. And we are them. So, we have to do better. We’re Baileys after all,” I replied.
They all looked at me in shock and anguish before Jacob picked up his beer in the form of a cheers. We picked up our drinks in the same form and looked at each other.
“For mom and dad. We love you and we fucking miss you everyday,” he said.
“Good one, Jake,” Bishop replied quietly. Sebastian nodded his head and we all took back our drinks.
Ashton wiped away a stray tear and laughed before standing up and grabbing us all into a hug. “Aww, I fucking love you all,” she mewed, kissing me all over my face.
“Ew, Ash are you on drugs?”
“Get off of me.”
“Chill out, Ashton.”
“Love me, you fuckers!”
Rhea walked into the room and smiled at the interaction between the siblings. She leaned against the wall and ran her hand through her hair. For once, she felt like things could actually be changing for them. She looked down at the letter she had written to Oliver and held it tight in her hand. Rhea sat down on the edge of her bed and gently pushed a few strands of hair out of Renton’s face as he slept. She leaned down next to him and saw Sebastian standing at her door. Rhea slowly sat up and grabbed for his hand. He walked closer to her and placed his forehead on her shoulder. Rhea exhaled slowly and kissed his neck.
“I love you, Rhea.”
“Fuck you right back.”
“I love you too, Jacq.”
Sebastian pulled away from her and kissed her forehead. “We have much to talk about,” he said, pulling her down on to his lap.
“What do you want to know?” she asked.
“Everything,” he replied.
Rhea sighed and handed Sebastian her letter to Oliver and then looked directly at him.
“I lied to you a lot in our senior year. I love you more than you’ll ever know, Jacq. But it all started at the very beginning...”