Chapter 7

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Tiana POV

"M-Mom?" I say, my voice shaking.

I can't believe she's here. I can't believe she's not sitting on the sofa, numbing her pain to the point of destruction. I can believe she actually took a step out of the house for something that isn't drugs. I can't believe she's here, with tears falling down her cheeks abd a desperate sort fear screaming through her eyes.

But most of all, I can't believe she cares. I almost forgot she ever did.

She cries harder when I utter that one word and, for some reason, that brings me back to reality. Because my life can't get better. Because I can't escape. Because I can't be happy.

Because a pretty boy can't just enter my life and make everything better.

And that's when I realize that I actually agreed to stay in his guest house. I agreed to stay in this boy's guest house, this boy who I have only known for a few days. This boy who made a bet with his best friend to sleep with me the moment he saw me. This boy who makes me feel safe and yet so so scared.

What is wrong with me?

"I promise! I promise I'll try harder! I promise I'll do better! I'll be better. I'll become the mother you deserve just please please don't ever do that again," my mom says, sobbing and clutching me tightly, like she's afraid I might disappear the moment she lets go of me. The thought of disappearing doesn't sound unpleasent. Almost beautiful, actually.

"Mom," is all I say, even though I have so much more to say. Nine years worth of words trapped in my throat.

That one word though, that one small word that so many people take for granted, seems to have opened a dam inside me because within seconds, sobs wrack my body and tears stream down my ugly, contorted face and loud, guttural noises rip their way out of my throat while I clutch my mother with the same amount of strength she clutches me. I can't help it though. This is the first time I can actually hope to get my mother back.

"I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. Oh my sweet Tiara," she keeps repeating over and over again while I hold on to her tightly just to make sure this is real. That she's real. That I'm not dreaming.

If this is a dream then I never want it to end.

Just then the doctor enters the room. A middle-aged man with a surprising amount of hair on his head considering his age.

"Hello Tiana, it's nice to see you awake and well," he says politely, giving me a small smile. I don't say anything. I just stare warily at him.

He sighs then, probably seeing my lack of trust in him. I don't know what else he expected.
It probably isn't the first time he's seen an expression like mine though, because he sighs in defeat. Like he knows nothing he does is going to make a difference. It makes me like him a little more. Maybe.

"Okay, lets start with introductions. I'm Dr. Edwards. I'm the guy that kept you alive, in case you were wondering. And I'm the guy that's going to sign your discharge papers," he says. His response makes me like him even more, even though I know that the only reason he gave me such a respose is to make me feel more comfortable. Mission accomplished.

"Ever think that maybe I didn't want you to save me?" I ask. I know my anger is unwarranted but it doesn't feel that way.

"Ever think that maybe you weren't given this life just to throw it away?" he asks back. His words may have been harsh, but his expression shows his true kindness. His smile could be nothing but genuine. He's a good man. I never knew those existed. Generic as his words are, they hit home.

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