-I've seen marriages fall to pieces. Now that I've grown, I've seen friendships fall to pieces.-
"Do you think we are stupid?" Hayley asked, cuddled on the couch under blankets next to Frank.
"Why?" Frank asked, taking another handful of popcorn and shoving it in to his mouth.
"For living together at such a young age? I mean, it kinda feels serious." Hayley said, nervously.
Frank laughed and turned to look at her, "Aren't we serious?"
"Well I, yeah, I think we are." Hayley admitted.
Frank nodded, "We are. I don't think it's stupid, not at all. I want you in my life. I want you here. Why take it slow when we know the conclusion?" He asked, a twinkle in his eye.
"The conclusion?" Hayley asked, showing her confusion at his statement.
"Someday I'm going to ask you to marry me Parker." Frank said, gently grabbing Hayley's hand. Her heart had started racing at his words. "And I hope you say yes."
Hayley just stared at Frank in amazement. Marriage? That statement had made her happier than she ever remembered being.
I woke up to something dripping on to my skin and as I opened my eyes I felt stiff. I looked around in confusion, realizing I was in a bathtub. Water from the faucet was dripping down my chest, which had woken me up.
Thoughts of Frank rushed to my head and I shivered, thankful to find that the only clothing missing was my shirt. He hadn't raped me.
I felt as if he had though. What he'd done had been just as terrible... I rubbed at my sore neck, wincing in pain as I touched it.
I pushed the curtain away to find that I was alone in the bathroom. Where had Frank gone? Then I remembered Alex... Where had Alex gone? Oh god.
I stood quickly, nearly falling out of the tub. I pulled on my shirt, turning and facing the mirror. A strangled gasp left my lips as I took in my appearance. My make up was smeared from the crying and my neck had dark bruises covering it.
I opened the bathroom door hesitantly to find someone slumped against the wall, snoring. The party was over but as I walked down the hallway I noticed a few people had passed out here along with me.
Suddenly I realized I had my phone in my pocket. How had I been such an idiot? I pulled it out and turned it on quickly. It seemed to take forever to completely turn on but then it began vibrating.
Once my phone stopped vibrating I found I had 16 missed texts from Alex along with a ton of missed calls. It was 7 am. Awesome.
I pressed talk on Alex's number and waited for him to pick up, "Hayley?" His worried voice made me feel like a terrible friend.
"Alex I-" My voice crumbled and I started sobbing. I couldn't stop, tears poured down my face and my throat started burning as I held the phone against my ear.
"Where are you?" Alex demanded.
"I-I- I'm still at- at the p-party." I said, trying to force words out in between my sobs.
"Fuck. I'll be there in a second. Meet me out front." Alex said and I could hear his keys jingle.
"Alex, P-please d-" I didn't even have to finish my sentence.
"Don't worry Hales I won't hang up. I'm coming. Just stay on the phone with me." He said softly. I heard his car start up and I struggled to find the words to explain what had happened. I wasn't even sure I wanted to attempt to explain it.
Frank had hurt me. He hadn't really done anything though... I mean he had tried to rape me and he had bruised my neck but he hadn't actually raped me and... and I just didn't know how to tell Alex. I didn't want Alex to get mad.
"Baby, you still there?" Alex asked. It was the first time he had ever called me 'baby' and I found that I was actually okay with it. He was calming me down. Tears were still falling down my face but at least now I wasn't sobbing. My throat still burning though.
"I-I'm thirsty." I said, hiccuping as I exited the house quietly.
"We can pick up something on the way home." Alex assured me, "I looked for you last night. Where were you?" He asked.
"I-" I paused, now was the time. Did I tell him or did I remain silent? I chose silence. "I fell asleep. I just wasn't feeling the party." I admitted.
"Oh." Alex said. I heard him sigh with what sounded like relief. I felt terrible once again. Alex worried openly about me quite often. I hated to cause him any trouble. He was such a good friend.
I heard a car and turned towards the road. I could see Alex's car speeding along the road and he pulled to a stop in front of me. I had been holding the phone to my ear, listening to him breath but I finally hung up and rushed to the car.
As I settled in to the passenger seat of Alex's car I could feel his eyes on me but I tried to pretend as if everything was okay. "You just went to sleep, huh?" Alex asked, voice tense.
"Yeah." I whispered, lying to him.
I winced as Alex reached over and brushed my hair away from my neck, "I don't know of many beds that cause bruising around the neck." Alex commented.
As Alex's fingers gently brushed against my neck I jumped and pleaded, "Please don't." Why did that come out? Oh god.
"Please don't?" Alex asked, withdrawing his fingers immediately.
"Um, it's sore." I lied.
"What happened?" Alex asked.
I turned to look at Alex, tears filling my eyes once again. "Please don't ask." I begged, as tears spilled down my cheeks again.
Alex nodded and turned away, his entire body tense as he started driving again. "Uh-" He cleared his throat. "Where did you want to go? Are you hungry? Are you up for being in public?" He asked.
No, I wasn't. "Sure. Food would be nice." I lied.
Silence fell over the car as Alex drove. I glanced at him from the corner of my eye. He was such a sweet guy. I was lucky to have a best friend like him and quite surprised. I'd heard of how big of a dick he was from a lot of people at the college we went to and he looked the part. He had a muscular build without being too big, he wore designer clothing, he had blonde hair that was cut short and blue eyes. He looked like your typical ridiculously gorgeous popular guy/jock but he really wasn't.
Sure, he liked expensive clothing. He worked to buy it and it just happened to be his preference. He was extremely good looking but since when had that become a fault? He and I had instantly hit it off. It was hard not to get along with Alex. Soon enough we became inseperable. He had filled the hole Frank had left me with when he went on tour.
Alex had never tried anything, completely respecting the fact that I had been in a relationship. We were just friends, still were. He was just... perfect.
Alex parked the car and stretched, yawning in exhausted. I glanced over at him again, "Have you gotten any sleep?" I asked.
Alex shook his head. "I couldn't sleep. I couldn't find you." he whispered.
He was a truly amazing friend.
If it hadn't been for Alex then I probably would've completely fallen apart when Frank broke up with me. I was aware of the fact that the truth of that made me quite weak but it was the truth. Alex had been there when I needed someone because I wasn't able to handle the overwhelming depression on my own...
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