The harder he pushed himself against her, the harder she cried. She just wanted it to be over, but Charlie’s whispers in her ear said differently. He’d have his turn.
“Hey!” a voice shouted, jarring her attention away from the bodies on top of her. Jason jumped back, shoving himself back into his pants and Charlie released her hands, still aching from the pressure. She dropped forward onto her knees, hitting the cement.
A tall figure was running towards them, fast approaching, and shouting profanities. “Get the fuck out of here or I swear to God I’ll beat the shit outta you!” He threatened, his voice painfully loud in the dark space.
Her hands shook violently as she sat up, trying to pull up her jeans and button them closed. Charlie and Jason were long gone, as if they were never there in the first place. As if they hadn’t just shattered her world into unforgettable pieces. Pieces that she wasn’t sure could ever be put back together.
“Are you okay?” he asked dropping down to her side. She instantly recognized him from school. His name was Travis and she’d had a crush on him ever since he moved to town. “I’m calling the police.”
“No,” she answered frantically reaching for his phone. “Don’t!”
He yanked it away from her before she could get her hands on it. She was battered, bruised, and bleeding. Travis Price was the last person she wanted to see her like this, much less strangers in uniform asking her for the dirty details. If she was brought in, they’d find out everything. She’d be sent to social services or, worse, the orphanage Travis himself lived in.
“Weren’t those the guys on the basketball team?” he asked still squatted down next to her. She nodded her head and tried to wipe away the tears still staining her face before he could see them. “We can turn them in by name!”
“Please just go away,” she told him trying to stop crying, but the sobs were coming on even stronger than before. Relentless and out of control. He placed a hand on her back, but she jerked away violently and terrified. “Don’t touch me!”
“I’m sorry,” his voice softer than before. “I’m sorry. I won’t. But you need to get out of here. Where do you live? I’ll take you home.”
“I’m fine,” she answered automatically through the tears. “Please just leave.”
“Whitney, come on. I heard what happened. You don’t have a place to go.”
He knew her name. He knew she was like him. She always thought he didn’t know she existed. He only had eyes for his girlfriend.
“You can’t tell anyone,” she demanded, standing up and fixing her shirt.
He put his hands up in a surrender. “Ok, I won’t. But I can’t just let you leave. You need help. I can take you to the hospital.”
“No, no, no,” she repeated. “I can’t. Please, just stop!”
He tried to reach out to her again, but she shoved him away. She wanted him to disappear more than anything. Wiping her eyes, taking deep breaths, she stopped crying as if by magic or sheer willpower. “I’m fine. I can handle it.”
He gave her a doubtful look, not believing a single, shaky word coming out of her mouth. “I won’t take you to the home I swear or call the cops, just let me take you to Sophie’s house. You know her right?”
“Your girlfriend?” she scoffed. Why would she want more people to know about this? It was already a nightmare and seemed to be getting worse. “No thanks. I have a place. Thanks though.”
Whitney started to walk away when he stepped in front of her. Being at least a foot and half taller he should have been intimidating, but the way he held himself was just the opposite. She wrapped her arms around herself willing it all away, but she already knew it was impossible. Travis was proof of that.
Yet, she felt herself step forward, going with him.