“Yeah?” Travis asked smiling now, his hands moving into his dark hair. “You want to stay at Sophie’s?”
She was about to change her mind again, but she was far from okay and if she went back to her shitty, so-called home she wouldn’t sleep. She’d stay awake in fear and hatred at who she’d become. But how could she face anyone after what just happened?
Maybe she should make a break for it, and suffer alone in her tent. He leaned down to meet her eye level as if sensing her need to run away and said, “Whitney, I’m so sorry I didn’t make it sooner. You didn’t deserve that. Those guys are fucking assholes. Please. You’ll be safe.”
She didn’t know whether or not to trust him or what being safe actually meant anymore. Yet, there was something about the way he was pleading that made her start to give in. So she crawled into his truck, still aching and broken.
He tried to talk to her during the ride, but she asked him to stop. She’d go with him, but she wasn’t going to divulge in her life problems. The closer they got to Sophie’s house, the more she started to regret her decision.
But she didn’t have a choice as they pulled into her driveway and Sophie came running out, barefoot and messy hair. Despite her sweats and oversized t-shirt, she still looked like a beauty queen. “Travis, what’s happening? Is she okay?”
Whitney felt her heart sink. It was like she was a child and her parents were whispering about her D+ in math. Sophie pulled Whitney into a big, unwanted hug. “Are you okay? He said you were assaulted. What happened?”
Whitney pushed her away on instinct and ignored the hurt look that crossed her face. “This was a mistake. I should just go.”
Sophie shook her head and stepped back, “No, I’m sorry it’s not my business. Please stay. Shower. Sleep. Whatever you need.”
“Can I just shower?” she squeaked out, arms still tightly wrapped around herself. Sophie led her inside, Travis behind them, and gave her a change of clothes and a fresh towel. Apparently, her parents and six siblings were sound asleep and the bathroom was all hers.
Letting the hot water run over her, she grabbed a loofa and started scrubbing her arms, anger filling in her chest. She didn’t stop until they were bright red and raw. She started on her stomach and breasts; Never stopping until her body was stinging in pain. It didn’t make a difference how hard she scrubbed and scratched, she would always and forever be unclean.
She watched the blood spill out onto the porcelain bathtub wondering how things could change so instantaneously. Growing up, she only had her parents to blame. She had them to hate, resent, wish horrible things upon. But now, she only hated herself.
Slowly lowering her body to the ground, ignoring the pain shooting through no long pure places. She ran a hand over her jaw. It didn’t hurt as bad as the rest of her, but she knew they hit her hard enough to leave bruises.
The shower head poured over her, soaking her hair. Whitney started to cry again. Horrible, ugly, sobs racking her chest. It was the kind of crying that overwhelmed and made you grateful to be alone. She let the tears mix in with the water pellets until there was nothing left of her.