"I guess..." I say as I stare at my drink.

"It's a time to grow independently and to mature. You will be seen as an adult and treated as one."

"Which is a good thing." I say.

"Of course."

"And this is an opportunity that not many people get." I try to remind myself.

"Yes that is true," He nods. "Especially where you are going. It's a big opportunity."

So obviously I can't put it to waste.

"I'm glad that you see this as an opportunity and that you recognize how fortunate you are to have parents helping you pay for a higher education. But Asia, are you sure this is what you want?" My mother asks in a worried tone.

"Well I have to go to college, Mom."

"Of course, but you don't have to go all the way to Indiana just for school."

"I know."

"And you know you don't have to leave just because Hunter is or because you think you have to go away because it's what most people do."

I look up at her and her eyebrows are furrowed and she stares at me in worry. I hesitate to answer her question. Am I sure this is what I want? Am I even ready for this? I have to be ready. It's too late to back down. Not after investing so much time and money in this can I tell them that I don't want to do this anymore. I have to at least try. I would feel like such a big letdown. Plus, I think this will be good for me and I'll have Hunter there with me.

The thought seems to help make things easier. I just hope things work out. Indiana is so far and I'm still learning to cope with my new mindset that my parents won't be close to me anymore and they won't be there for me when I have an anxiety attack or am struggling. But I guess that's what college is about. Being more independent.

I know it's been about 8 months since the incident, but it doesn't feel that way. Yes, I am receiving help and I am better, but it still affects my everyday life whether I want it to or not. It did some real damage to me that I can't ever replace and destroyed parts of me that I can't ever have back. Before this happened to me, I think I would be accepting college with open arms. But since life didn't work out that way, college is getting pushed back by my haunting past and difficult present.

"Ace—"

"I can do this," I cut her off. "I want to do this."

"You know your mother and I would never push you away or tell you that you have to go." My father says.

"If anything, you going away makes me nervous. It's only been a few months since...well you know," Mom says, causing me to gulp and look away. "I still worry about you. But I don't want to make you feel bad if you don't want to go away because you don't have to."

"It's fine, I can do this." I shake my head.

"I know you don't want to hurt Hunter's feelings by not attending, but your health always comes first—"

"Mom, I'm fine," I interject. "And I'm not going just because of Hunter. I'm going because it's a great school and plus, we already paid for everything."

The two of them just stare at me worriedly. Seriously, ever since the incident they treat me like I'm the most fragile thing in the world. I feel that they're starting to ease up a little, but it's like they're walking on eggshells sometimes when they talk to me. It's not like I don't understand why they do it, but it dehumanizes me a bit. I don't know what to say to convince them that I will be okay, especially with them staring at me like that.

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