(This was inspired by a writing prompt I found on reddit. Enjoy!)
The music was banging through my skull… Loud. So very very loud.
I could feel the pressure building within my chest. That pressure of, I need to be alone. I was very familiar with this pressure and I was typically able to keep it under control. But tonight it wasn’t going to happen. I needed to find some place to myself soon or I was going to snap. I knew I couldn’t drive since Kelsey had decided she was going to drive us there in her Daddy’s new sports car. I thought it was a bad idea (I usually think all of Kelsey’s ideas are bad ideas) but she decided to drive.
Now we were at the party and I was starting to lose control. Being an extroverted introvert sucks. Great around people and everyone always assumes you want to hang out with them. But a lot of the times, you just want to be by yourself and get lost in your own world. Like I was right now…
I’d been lost in my own world up to that point. I hadn’t noticed when he came over and started trying to flirt with me. Or at least, I think he was trying to flirt with me. He was telling me all about the vacation his parents had gone on. Pointing at the different pictures on the wall. I really couldn’t care less. He had been leading me down a hallway towards what appeared to be the bedrooms (the last place on earth I wanted to be with him). So when he turned to point to another picture and start in on another story from their trip to white sandy beaches that I’d never been to, I turned back down the hallway and walked through the first open door I found.
Closing the door as quietly as possible (so he wouldn’t know which way I’d gone when he noticed I was gone), I realized I had stumbled into a bedroom. I fought back a brief moment of panic realizing that I was alone in the bedroom so that was fine. As my eyes adjusted to the darkness, I started to notice toys around the room and posters on the wall. A desk in the corner with a laptop covered in boy band stickers told me whose room I was now a refugee in. His blonde little sister was vacationing with parents while he through a party.
“Go away.” I nearly screamed when I heard the voice. Thankfully I didn’t otherwise I’m sure I would have been caught by him.
I started glancing around the room trying to find the owner of the voice. After a few moments I saw a person shape standing in a darkened corner. “Go away.” the person said again. “This is my hiding place. Not available for fucking.”
Taken aback by the directness, I stumbled some words out before I finally managed, “Can I just hide in here for a few minutes please? I’m not trying to fuck in here, I just need to get away from all the people.” The person didn’t move but somehow I knew they’d agreed to let me stay. I sighed and collapsed to the floor. I ended up in the opposite corner of this stranger with my back partially leaning on the door. We sat in blissful silence for a few minutes. Nothing but our own thoughts to occupy ourselves.
The peace was short-lived however, “Who are you hiding from?” the voice asked. I wasn’t sure who the voice belonged to yet but I decided that I could trust a fellow person hiding in the dark.
“Which one is Chad?”
They didn’t know who Chad was? I thought everyone in our school knew who Chad was. “He’s the guy who lives here. I’ve decided his parents had to buy a house this big in order to fit his enormous ego.” I chuckled a little at my own joke but she just brushed hair out of her face and said, “Oh. Him…”
I had figured out that it was a girl that was taking refuge with me from the storm of teenage angst and hormones. She seemed to be pretty enough from what I could see. All I could really see was some flowing blonde hair and a face that was well framed by it. She had a somewhat long face that came to a nice point at her chin. The only other feature I could make out was the light from the street lamp shining off her eyes. The light seemed to dance, almost as if she were on the verge of crying.
Her response to my attempted joke was not what I expected. It was laced with the odor of an untold story she’d rather forget. My gut told me it had something to do with Chad.
Not wanting to bring up unpleasant feelings in my temporary room mate, I decided I’d try to cheer her up (being an introvert that cares about people’s feelings sucks…) “What’s your name?”
“Are you from around here?”
Again, silence. She had up to this point seemed lost in her own world ever since I mentioned Chad.
“Hey… Are you ok?”
She finally turned her head to me as if being snapped out her of herself. “I’m fine. I think I should go though.” She tried to stand up but for some reason was having some difficulty. I stood-up and started to walk over to her but she held up her hand to top me. “I don’t need anyone else touching me tonight.” I stopped and waited. A moment later she struggled to her feet. Although I couldn’t see anything physically wrong with her, she walked very gingerly as if she was in an extreme amount of pain. She walked past me without saying a word and walked out into the party.
The next time I saw her was the first day back after the party. I was sitting in the cafeteria at school waiting for class to start. Our school had TV’s hooked-up to the different news networks so we could, “…keep up with the current affairs of our world.” according to our principle. It was on one of those news networks I saw her picture. I got up and turned the volume up on the TV to hear what the news caster was saying:
“Her body was found by some local fishermen this morning as they were getting ready to go out on their boat. It appears the cause of death was a suicide. A toxicology report shows that she had 3 times the recommended amount of vicodine in her system. According to the Medical Examiner, she had been dead since Friday night.”
I stood completely still. Unable to think. Unable to breathe. What had just happened? I willed myself to not go into shock just yet. I turned my attention back to the newscaster.
“Authorities also believe there may have been foul play involved. There are signs of a sexual assault.”
That’s why she had walked so gingerly when she left… She’d been raped!
My mind filled with rage as I thought about Chad. I knew he was the one who’d done it to her. She became so quiet when I mentioned his name… And he was gonna try and get me into his bedroom too!
Before I knew quite what I was doing, my phone was in my hand with 911 already dialed. I smiled as I pressed the send button. I was going to make sure that Chad paid for what he did.