After a nice long nap, Andrea walked out to the living room, feeling refreshed. She was also in a desperate need to see Valerie for several reasons. But as she entered the living room, she found it empty. The bed was messy and even Adam wasn’t in sigh. Hearing a cluttering of pots and pans she moved to the kitchen.
Seeing Kate there she gave a quick glance around and then sniffed but nothing. “Where are Adam and Valerie?” she asked and Kate turned giving her a small smile.
“They went out through the back door. Valerie insisted. I’m cooking, do you want something to eat?” she asked and Andrea shook her head in denial. Pulling on her jacket and shoes, she followed suit and walked out. The September evening was slightly chilly and there was a little frost in the air. Sniffing her way out, she traced a dirty trail along the autumn trees.
Soon, Adam’s scent was dominant and around the bend, she found him leaning on a rock, his hands dug in the pocket of his coat. He averted his gaze to her and she looked at him, confused.
“Where’s Valerie?” she asked and for a reply she saw his face turn away and give a jerk in the opposite direction. She took a step forward and behind his sturdy frame, she finally caught a glimpse of the girl she’d been so restlessly searching for.
Valerie was sitting on the bank of a pond, wrapped in a dull white sheet. Her hair flowed behind her back and some of the loose strands hid her face. She sat motionless as if held in time. At a first glance, she would remind you of a spirit, lost in the wilderness.
“She’s been sitting like that for nearly an hour now,” he said softly, his gaze refusing to leave her sight should she disappear again, “Something happened,” he continued in his hushed tone, “and you know about it Andrea,” he averted his face to her for a split of a second and then turned it back, “tell me,”
They were two simple words to an ordinary human ear but in Andrea’s, they rung as a command and she found herself losing restraint on her tongue, “I think she was raped. She has signs of sexual assault on her body,” she blabbed.
“What?” he hissed, his frame straightening up as he stared at Andrea with wide eyes. This was extremely unexpected news to him but what was moiré revolting was the thought of someone touching her. His wolf craved for blood and he found it hard to control it. Truth was, he was thirsty for blood too.
“Please don’t do anything. We don’t know who did it and she needs some space and time to recover. We can’t just bombard her with questions,” Andrea begged, her fingertips lightly holding his wrist. He looked at her pleading expression and then at Valerie’s still form. She was right, Valerie needed affection and care. She needed their support and she was his first priority.
“She won’t let me near her,” he said, leaning back on the massive rock, “Go speak to her,” he ordered and with that, Andrea gently traced her steps towards the girl. Valerie didn’t move or show any signs of recognition when Andrea approached her, instead she just kept staring the water.
“Valerie,” Andrea whispered, her hushed voice pleading for her thoughts.
Several moments passed in stillness, the calm began raking both Andrea and Adam’s nerves, whose ears were concentrated on their words.
“I’ve been going over it all in my mind,” Valerie breathed, catching both their attention. Her features were still void of any expression and the emptiness in her eyes was in a sense frightening.
“Going over what?” Andrea questioned carefully.
“Everything,” she said simply. Another momentary silence followed before Valerie continued, “Everything for as far as I can remember……I don’t understand,” she muttered, her brows creasing in a frown.
Andrea gently reached for her hand and gave it a gentle squeeze, “Share with me so I can help you understand,” she urged. For a second she thought Valerie was done talking but she went on.
“All that I’ve ever done, I’ve always tried to avoid hurting anyone. I’ve never tried to get in their way. Ryan doesn’t like me so I stay out of his sight as far as possible. Adam didn’t want me and I did my best to never trouble him,” she said and paused for a breath, flickering her gaze to the two graves on the other side, “Mum asked me to take care of Dad and I did my best. I’ve never, as far as I can remember, harmed anyone….,” she whispered.
|Willa Holland||as Valerie|
|Amanda Bynes||as Andrea|
|Tobias Sorensen||as Adam|
|Sean O'pry||as Ryan|
|Ryan Phillippe||as Steve|