Chapter 22- Feel Good

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"Taika!" I yell frantically, hopping over the reception desk.

I cringe at the high pitched scream from Gwyneth Paltrow as I kick the papers from the desk with my creepy donkey legs.

Taika's notorious hat of pepper grey hair spins to reveal a tan, oddly handsome face. At first he appears confused, then concerned, and then excited.

"Tommy!" he cheers, dancing towards me and enveloping me into a warm hug. I don't know this man very well, but he has such an inviting personality, I immediately feel safe. "You weren't supposed to be back until Sunday," he frowns, his eyebrows tugging together. "Is everything alright?"

"Well, my mother was arrested," I sigh, chuckling at Taika's horrified expression. "She wasn't ever supposed to have contact with me in the first place. I didn't realize that it was a complete violation of her restraining order. I didn't want her near my nephews so I called the police, after she threatened me-,"

"SHE DID WHAT?!"

Everybody stops to stare and I freeze, my eyes going wide. Shit.

"Don't worry," I hiss as he tugs me into his office.

I stalk over to the large widow and stroke my arms.

"Did she hurt you?"

I shake my head, but Taika isn't an idiot. He knows I'm hiding something from him.

His face drains of color and he leans heavily onto his desk. "Did she hurt Chris?" I don't react. My eyes stay glued to the train tracks in the distance.

I wish it hit me. I wish it fucking killed me.

"Fuck!" Taika growls and I flinch. I hate it when people get mad at me. They tend to use their hands a lot. "I should never have let you two go there! I should have put my foot down!" he prowls towards me and I slink backwards into a cower.

Don't-hurt-me-please-don't-hurt-me.

"Get away from him," Chris snaps from the doorway and I shut my eyes. "Taika, what the fuck do you think you're doing? He doesn't like it, stop!"

"I wasn't-," Taika blinks, guilt flooding his expression. "Oh, Tom. I didn't mean... I wouldn't ever-,"

"I know," I shrug, trying hard to calm my rapid pulse. "It's okay."

"It's not! I'm so sorry-,"

Without a word, I scuttle out of his office. Chris is ranting and Taika is still trying to apologize fruitlessly.

Their voices disappear as I climb up the stairs and towards my room.

Our room.

I pray Chris doesn't try and talk to me. Right now I just wish to be alone with my torturous thoughts and self-depreciating tendencies.

As I storm into our room, a familiar wave of hunger almost cripples me, but it's not for food.

Heck no.

I'm rarely ever hungry for food.

It's something else.

I shake my head, trying to dispel the thoughts, the memories of feeling weightless and totally pain free. If I get my hands on some... drugs... I won't have to feel. I won't have to hurt anymore. I won't have to deal with anything.

Pacing from the doorway to the bathroom like a caged animal, I debate whether or not I have the guts to go out and get something.

I have money, that's not a problem.

I've been clean for three years now, but the streak doesn't matter to me.

I'll disappoint my friends; they'll be so angry... and what kind of role model will I be to little Tommy, Jack and Sammy?

I can't take it anymore!

My nerve endings are on fire and my anxiety attacks are hurting.

They hurt so badly.

I just need a little bit... just enough to make me feel good.

I swear...

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