The shower felt nice, and though I didn’t use any soap the water still washed away the stickiness of the icee that had been meant for Mikey’s body only. I thought of him, and how nice he seemed sometimes… while other times he was just so mean, and it was always so unexpected. I never knew which side of him to expect.
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
Then there was Gerard, who just seemed… like he wanted to be just like Jack, and the thought sickened me. I really couldn’t make myself feel anything for Gerard other than revulsion.
Whereas with Mikey I felt total confusion. He blindsided me at every turn we metaphorically made.
The water began to get cold and I hesitantly stepped from under the shower head, grabbing the towel Mikey had given me. It was big and white, also very fluffy. I felt comfort as I wrapped it around my body, the cold air from the house sending goose-bumps over my skin.
My clothes were dirty, and I had discarded them next to the door on the clean floor. The entire house seemed so clean. Did Mikey clean it himself?
The bathroom had two doors, one leading in to the room Mikey had identified as his own room… and the other leading in to another room. I chose to go to Mikey’s room, hoping to run in to him again. I had no idea where to sleep, though now sleep was far from my mind. I just really didn’t know what to do.
The room was empty, and out of curiosity I looked around. Mikey had a few photographs of himself and Gerard tacked to the wall, beside those photographs were pictures of him and a woman. They both looked happy. Mikey had a girlfriend? In one photograph he was pressing a kiss to her cheek.
I looked away, uncomfortable.
The hallway was empty as well and I wandered downstairs, holding the towel tightly to my body as I carefully took each step.
I heard Mikey’s voice and quietly approached wherever it was that he was at. “She’s weird.” Mikey said, in a tone that suggested he was talking to a child. “And she doesn’t like me at all.” Was he talking about me? I stood in place, just listening.
“You’ll meet her.” Mikey said, and then I heard some type of clatter. “I don’t know if she’ll like you though. She doesn’t like anything. She tried to shoot me.” He was talking about me. He had a child?
“With the gun I took from Jack.” Mikey said, matter of factly. “Thankfully I’d already taken all of the bullets out of the gun.”
I got sick of listening in to his ridiculous conversation so I stepped in to the room, uncomfortably clearing my throat. “I tried to shoot you because you threatened to make me your whore, or something along those creepy lines.” There was no one else in the room… except for a cat. He was talking to his cat?
“I threatened no such thing.” Mikey replied, though I saw the pink creep on to his cheeks. “That’s just what you were advertised as, if you remember… I did buy you from an auction.”
“I remember clearly, I also remember who gave me to the people who sold me. Oh, wasn’t that you?” I narrowed my eyes, as he glared at me.
“Why don’t you think about why we took you in the first place.” Mikey said, quite coldly. “And what got your father shot. Then maybe you’ll watch that smart fucking mouth.”
“It’s not my fault that you’re all very troubled assholes, who decided to rob my house.” And then take me.
“Jack would’ve backed off had you not mouthed off and made it some kind of contest. He loves a challenge, and he loves breaking bitches like you.” Mikey’s tone was changing, along with his entire demeanor. “That’s why he took you, and that’s why you’re here. You’re lucky that I didn’t just decide to leave you to get bought by some sick asshole. We wouldn’t be having that conversation then because your pretty little mouth would probably be stuffed with cock.” I was caught off guard by the crude tone he used, and the equally crude words.
I suddenly wished I’d stayed upstairs, away from Mikey. He was in one of those angry moods obviously, and now all that I expected was to hear how terrible my life would be but it didn’t matter. When my only options were bad and worse… I wasn’t going to be happy either way. Didn’t he understand that just left the option of being unhappy or even more unhappy?
The cat meowed and Mikey glanced down, before awkwardly placing a bowl of food on the floor. “She’s overweight so I only feed her at certain times, a certain amount.” He awkwardly commented, demeanor changing once again.
“What’s the point?”
“Well, she’ll die if she doesn’t get her weight under control.”
“Everything that lives eventually dies. Why not just let her enjoy the one thing she can enjoy; food?” There, I could get severely fat. I could still enjoy food. Where was Mikey’s food?
“Fine, fuck!” Mikey’s voice rose as he grabbed the bowl away from the poor cat. I watched as he filled it to the top and then dropped it back on to the floor, food spilling from the bowl.
I didn’t say anything as I turned away and angrily walked from the kitchen in to what I assumed was the living room. “Where the fuck are you going?” Mikey yelled after me.
I ignored him, walking towards the front door. I wanted out even though there was nowhere to go.
“Dylan, don’t you dare fucking go out that door.” Mikey sounded irate.
“Or what?” I yelled back, hand on the door knob. “You’ll kidnap me again?”
Mikey didn’t say anything so I opened the door, nervously stepping outside. I still had no idea where Gerard was. I slammed the door behind me, intentionally trying to piss Mikey off.
If he really wanted to keep me here then I would make his life a living hell.
Once outside I realized I was still in a towel, and I held it even tighter, terrified that it would slip off. Then again there weren’t really any neighbors to worry about… I just had to avoid Gerard, though he was probably in the guest house… eating his vast amount of candy. How was he so deadly, yet so ridiculously childish?
The grass was green and trimmed, so someone mowed. Was Mikey really the one that dealt with all of the upkeep around this place? The soft grass felt odd between my toes, and I realized this was the first time I’d ever walked barefoot anywhere outside. It felt nice. I walked down the hill, finding that I was walking towards a pond, and I thoughtlessly followed the line of water- hearing nothing other than the buzz of bugs nearby.
I was so tired. How had all of this really happened in just a few days? It felt like years had come and gone, and I was in hell. The fire burned against my skin, and I was as miserable as I could be. All of the years I’d spent whining to my parents about how unfair life was… this was what bad was. Before I’d had no idea.
I found a tree next to the large pond and sat down, making sure to place an equal amount of towel underneath and over me, thankful for how large the towel was. As I leaned my head against the tree I realized just how tired I really was.
I fell asleep to the sound of water and bugs, finding it to be the only relaxing part of my life now.
“Dylan?” Where the hell had she gone?
“Maybe she’s inside. Have you checked inside?” Gerard hated the forest at night. It scared him, and always had. The dark cast shadows, causing his imagination to run wild.
Dylan had been gone for hours…
Would she be afraid of the forest at night?
“I’ve checked inside. She ran out earlier. I expected her to be back by now.” I looked towards the trees, knowing I’d have to wander inside. I had no other choice. She wouldn’t be okay out there by herself. How could she be so stupid? It was what I said. I was cruel, and out of line.
Gerard nervously took a step backward, “Why don’t we look for her in the morning?”
“Because she might be terrified and lost.” I replied, “And it’s my job to protect her.”
“No, it’s not.” Gerard said, shaking his head. “You bought her. She’s yours to do with as you please, so if you want her to … be in the forest at night by herself, then that’s your call.”
“That made no fucking sense.” I snapped. “What have you been snorting?” I hadn’t checked him for drugs, but now I noticed that he did look a little shaky.
Damn it Gerard.
“It was just a little…” I cut him off by grabbing on to his shirt, pulling him towards me.
“It’s your fault that she’s here; and that her father is dead. It’s your fault that I have to play the bad guy, and it’s your fault that we could both go to jail if she ever finds the police. If you don’t fucking quit with the drugs then I swear to fucking god that I will kill you Gerard. I’m already in it for life, with the charges I’d get for kidnapping her… What’s more time on top of that?”
Gerard’s eyes widened in fear and I let him go, letting out a deep breath as I tried to calm myself.
“Dad!” I heard the panicked shout, coming from down by the pond. Dad?
With one last look at Gerard I ran that way, hearing his footsteps behind me. “Dylan?” Where was she? I swear it sounded like the call had come from this direction.
“Dad… daddy, don’t die please.” She wasn’t being as loud now but I could still hear her.
She was having a nightmare.
“I’m sorry.” She cried out, twisting next to the tree. The towel she’d run outside in was next to her, bunched up.
“Gerard, don’t.” I said, just as he was about to come around the bend. “Just go back inside. I have it from here.”
Gerard looked confused but quickly backed away, disappearing from my sight.
I quickly walked towards her, grabbing the towel. “Dylan?” I placed my hand on her shoulder, and she rolled towards me.
Her eyes fluttered open but then fell back shut, “Daddy…” She mumbled, reaching out for me.
Awkwardly I leaned down, as she grabbed for me. I pulled her against me, holding her tightly. It was awkward and we both almost fell multiple times as I walked towards my house. I was exhausted, and suddenly relieved. I’d been worried about her. The stupid girl had no sense whatsoever.
“Dylan?” I mumbled her name as I reached out for the door knob, quickly walking inside. She felt cold against me, which came as no surprise since she’d been outside naked for hours.
“You’re so warm daddy.” She mumbled, blinking her eyes in her partial sleep state.
She was miserable over her father being shot.
Poor girl, why couldn’t I give her a break?
As I climbed the stairs I made a mental note to lift more weights, and go to the gym more often… Then I realized I probably wouldn’t be able to because I’d always have to be here watching over Dylan- ensuring she didn’t go to the police and get my ass arrested. Would I ever be able to do anything again? Or would I constantly be babysitting her?
The dark part of me just wanted to be as careless as the other men that sat and made bids on girls. I wanted to be heartless and just do what I wanted to do to her but as I held her in my arms and carried her to my bedroom… I knew I could never do that.
I carefully placed Dylan on my bed and then wrestled the blanket out from underneath her so that I could cover her up. She grabbed on to the blanket and rolled over, pulling the blanket with her.
With a sigh I turned the light off and laid down next to her, blanket-less.
When I was a kid Alex would always sleep with me when I had nightmares. He told the best bedtime stories, better than Dad’s ever were. Mom stuck to the books, because she said she didn’t like to mess with perfection.
I always woke up with at least one bruise because Alex kicked in his sleep but I didn’t care. He always made me feel better. He always made me feel safe.
“Alex?” I mumbled out his name, expecting to be home in bed. I’d had a nightmare. What was the nightmare again?
No one responded but when I rolled over I found myself pressing against a warm body.
My nightmare… Dad got shot. What happened to Alex? Only Mikey knew. ”I dealt with him.” What did that really mean?
Mikey was beside me, fast asleep. When did I get in here? Why were we sharing a bed? The blanket was over the both of us and with a quick peak I found that I was naked, but thankfully Mikey was not. He was fully clothed.
The unwelcome tears filled my eyes once again.
Would I ever feel okay again?
A crash downstairs gained my attention, forcing me from overthinking my situation and pitying myself even more. What was that?
Mikey’s eyes flew open and I jumped, frightened by his quick reaction.
“Mikey fucking Way!” I heard someone yell… that someone sounded angry, and very familiar. “I know you have the bitch!” … Jack.