I banged on the door like a maniac as I stood on Caitlin’s best friend, Holly Peterson’s doorstep.
“C’mon, open up.” I whined.
After what felt like a lifetime, the door finally swung open to reveal Holly.
“Gosh, Justin,” she said. “What’re you trying to do? Break the door?”
I ignored her comment and stepped into the house without waiting for her invitation.
“We need to talk,”
“Okay...” she answered as a puzzled look appeared on her face.
“What!” she exclaimed. “Since when?”
“A few days ago.” I said. “ She disappeared without a trace. But, this morning my mom said she called the Beadles and told them that she’d gone on vacation with Seth—”
Holly shook her head.
“She’s lying.” Holly stated. “She wouldn’t just up and leave without telling anyone.”
“That’s what I thought.” I agreed. “But I just didn’t know where Seth would take her.”
Holly bit her lip as she thought for a moment.
“I remember once Seth said something about how his grandparents lived in a cabin before they died, but it’s the fall, what idiot would go to a cabin in the fall?”
“An idiot who doesn’t want anyone to find him.” I replied. “Where is the cabin?”
“I’m not sure exactly, but I know he said it was in the woods about ten minutes from here.”
“Alright then, let’s go.” I said.
Holly stared at me.
“What are you crazy? You can’t just go off into the woods and start looking!”
“Why not?” I questioned.
“Because, you just...can’t Justin! It could be dangerous.”
“That’s exactly why we SHOULD go.” I exclaimed.
“I just think that we should leave this kind of thing to the police.” she said.
“Did you not listen to anything that I’ve said? The police and everyone else believe that she’s on vacation and they’ve given up on her!”
Holly sighed. “Fine,”
I smiled as she ran up the stairs.
“Ashlynn,” she announced. “I’m going to go hang with Justin.”
“Yeah, whatever.” she called back. “But if Mom and Dad get mad, I’m not bailing you out.”
Holly rolled her eyes as she came back down the stairs with her phone and jacket.
I rummaged through the drawer until I finally found a large knife.
The sound of Seth’s car caused me to jump and I quickly hid the knife back into the drawer. I hadn’t expected him to get back so quickly.
I heard the sound of the door slam open and I looked up to see a furious Seth with a bag in his hand.
“Do you have any idea how much freakin’ embarrassment you just put me through?” he hollered at me.
I shivered slightly as he stormed towards me.
I began to back away from him until I ran into the counter-top. I felt the pointed corner dig into my back as he pressed his body against mine.
I cowered in fear.
“Go take the damn test,” he cussed shoving the bag into my hand.
I swallowed hard. I could smell alcohol on his breath and I knew that if I was pregnant, he’d beat the hell out of me.
“NOW!” he screamed before slapping me.
Tears strolled down my cheeks as I tried to manage holding the bag and limping over to the bathroom with the crutches.
Once I’d reached the bathroom, I tried to close the door. My logic was that I could simply pour water on the test, but Seth stopped the door with his foot.
“Nice try. I’m going to make sure you don’t try to lie to me.”
I simply cried as I unscrewed the water bottle and began to slowly sip the water. I was about 95 percent sure that I was indeed pregnant, because I never missed my period—never, even in the beginning I hadn’t missed it.
“Hurry up,” Seth growled.
Scared of what would happen if I didn’t obey, I gulped down the rest of the water.
Once I was finished, Seth looked at me expectantly.
“It’s gonna take a little while,” I said hoping he’d leave me alone.
Instead he simply crossed his arms and stared. “I’m not going anywhere.”
Finally, I felt the urge to pee.
I opened the box and followed the instructions.
Once I was done, I sat the stick on the sink with shaky hands.
I set the timer on the box for five minutes.
I looked up to see Seth’s icy blue eyes burning a hole through me.
“What?” I asked quietly.
“This is all your fudgein’ fault.” he muttered.
I wanted to scream at him and tell him that it was really his fault since he’d been the one to force himself on me, but I just stayed quiet as I sat on the floor with my knees pulled to my chest.
The timer dinged and I slowly stood up off the floor.
I walked over to the bathroom and I felt tears stream down my face as a little pink plus sign sat there as plan as day.
“Are you sure that he said the cabin was ten minutes from your place?” I questioned as I continued to drive my Range Rover down a raggedy dirt road.
“No, Justin, I’m not sure of anything! I told you this was a bad id—”
Holly was cut off by a loud crash.
“What was that?” she asked.
I shrugged. “I don’t know. Let’s follow it.”
I was already climbing out of the car.
She stared at me blankly.
She nodded as she also got out of the car.
I locked the doors and began to follow the loud sounds of things banging and breaking.
We began to waddle through the grimy thicket.
We were poked and scratched by branches and it felt as if we weren’t making an ounce of progress, but I wasn’t willing to stop.
Caitlin was nearby, I could feel it in my heart and soul.
“J-J-Justin,” I turned around to see a freaked out Holly. “Look.”
I turned to see a sign posted to a tree and I snatched if off.
“Beware, you’re on private property. Any trespassers will be shot—or worse.” I read aloud.
She stared at me with wide-eyes.
“Do you think they’re serious?” she questioned.
“Of course not,” my voice was a hundred times more confident than I was.
I cowered in a corner as Seth picked up a chair and threw it out of the window.
“My life was fine, just freakin’ fine until YOU came along!” he screamed. “You’ve been nothing, but trouble. Nothing but freakin’ trouble! I’ve got my whole life planned out and it’s not going to be ruined just because you were too stupid to get on birth control!”
An anger that had been boiling for a long time exploded inside of me.
“Me?” I shrieked. “I wanted to wait until I was married, but you didn’t give me a choice. You snatched my innocence from me. Every single time, Seth, I told you I didn’t want to have sex with you, but you didn’t care. You’d just hit me, pin me down and hurt me—over and over again until you were done. I’m tired of you blaming me for everything. I’ve done absolutely NOTHING wrong! This is ALL your fault.”
Seth was furious, but I didn’t care. I didn’t care at all.
He yanked me up by my hair and slammed me against the wall.
He leaned down and whispered in my ear.
“After I’m done with you, it won’t matter whose fault it is, because there won’t be a baby,” He shoved me to the floor and kicked me in the stomach sending tears to my eyes and knocking the air out of me.
I quietly whispered a simple prayer before a blow to my head caused everything to go dark.
“God, help me.”