Dear Robyn,

Obviously, I'm not good at making commitments to my decisions.

Apparently we're going on a double date. You and Preston and me and Paige. We're going to the climbing gym Preston works at. (He and I have climbed there a lot. I talk about it sometimes but I don't think you really listen when I do, so I kind of just stopped talking about it.) But if I remember right, aren't you scared of heights or something? You might want to tell Preston that. Not that I'm sure he'll listen or anything. But yeah. If you don't want to go, you don't have to. But you might want to say so now.

Should I call you?

No. I can't really do that anymore. I have a girlfriend, and you're my brother's girlfriend.

Wow. This really is kind of complicated now.

If anything, I'll keep seeing you at school. And Saturday, of course. For the double date.

Dear Robyn,

I'm getting a bad feeling something bad might happen today.

Of course, I really hope I'm wrong, but somehow I really feel like something bad might happen today. And I guess I just feel the need to write to you about it.

See you, well, really soon.

Ian

(P.S. Looks like I'm driving us. Thanks for telling me earlier, Preston. I feel like if I gave these to you he might read them. And then kill me. So it's probably a good idea for me to keep these. Either that or I'm just trying to make up more excuses to not give these to you.)

Dear Robyn,

I still can't believe you haven't walked away yet.

I still can't believe you're letting him do all those things to you.

Open your eyes. See how he's treating you. And get away while you can. I would if I could. But I'm his brother. I can't just walk away from him like you can.

This is about to be out of my hands. I wish that wasn't true. But I know it is.

I don't like this.

That's all I think I can say about it.

Ian

Dear Robyn,

Also, I don't know why Preston got so mad when I tried to fix your harness. He knows I'd never cheat on Paige, first of all. And I'd never let someone else's girlfriend cheat on her boyfriend with me. It's just not me. It's not something I'd do.

I wish I knew what to do. What to say. I really want to call you. I don't know why he wouldn't let you down when you were clearly terrified and afraid. I wish I could've said something to you in the car. But everything I thought of to say in the car stayed in my head. Because I didn't know how I could possibly say anything to you without sounding either jealous, angry, annoyed, rude, or a combination of all those things and more.

You told him you were scared. You asked him to let you down. And he didn't.

Shouldn't that mean something to you?

I let Paige down when she wanted to come down. I didn't push her before she was ready. It was your first time. It wasn't okay for him to push you. I talked to him. But I don't know if I got through to him.

He was turning it into a competition when you were up there. I asked him to let you go. And the only reason he didn't let go of you was to win. To prove a point to himself. Someone who really cared about you wouldn't do that.

Who got you down when you were scared? I did. I climbed up without a rope, showed you it was okay, and jumped onto the ground safely. If I hadn't done that, you would probably still be stuck up there. Or somehow it would've become a huge deal and Preston may have been fired and we might have all been kicked out of there. Oh yeah and a lot of people might have looked at you. And that probably would've been embarrassing.

I'm just glad you and Preston didn't go alone.

You were shaking and sweating and scared. It was obvious. Anyone could have figured that out just from looking at you. But no. Preston clearly has some issues.

I wonder if Preston is still pissed that I grabbed your hand to help you up. It's not like he did.

I don't even know why I should care what he thinks. Other than the fact that I probably owe a lot of my soul to him because of everything he's done.

This would be so much easier if it was all black and white.

Does Preston remind you of Randy yet? Or are you still blind to it?

I'm going to try to talk to him again. (I'm writing this in the car, after I dropped you and Paige off. I'm pretty sure Preston is still at the climbing gym. I'm sitting in the parking lot. I guess I'm just delaying. But I better move before he leaves and it gets harder to talk to him.)

Later.

Ian

Dear Robyn,

I know I'm messed up too. But I'm not obsessed with controlling people. I figured out why Preston is dangerous. He loves being control. He needs to be in control. Because there's that one thing in his life he's not actually in control of, so when he actually can be in control, he loves it. And the more he understands it and experiences it, the more he needs it.

I told him I didn't think he was ready for a girlfriend, and you know what his response was? He asked if I was jealous you said yes to him and not to me. I guess it may look like I'm a bit jealous, or at least, it may have seemed that way at one time. But come on. I have a girlfriend now. You have a boyfriend. Clearly, I've moved on. Somewhat.

Of course, I'm saying that while writing you a letter. Yeah. That clearly makes a whole lot of sense.

(Oh, and I may have lied to Preston just a bit. I was the one who wanted to make it a double date. Because I was worried something would happen. And look. I was right.)

Will you listen to me now?

He is using you. He is using the fact that you care about him. I don't think he's doing it on purpose. I think he's mostly just trying to understand it. But the fact is, he is doing it, even if he knows he is or not. And that I do have a problem with. Because that is not okay.

He showed me he's been practicing with the gun. Fired into two trees right in their centers. He's always been good with guns. Andrew taught us when we were way younger, way before any of this stuff started, way before Grace leaving. I was terrible. But Preston was always pretty good at it. He knew what he was doing. I couldn't have said the same thing about myself. But the way he fired that revolver was terrifying. There was no emotion. He just pointed it at the trees. Aimed. Fired. And there went the bullets. Clean through the middle. And then Preston asked me if it would be okay if I killed Andrew.

I don't know why he asked me. Preston is the one who is most affected by Andrew, not me. (Effected? Affected? I don't care right now.) But he asked me. Then he gave the last word. He doesn't think he can hold on much longer. Once he falls off, I won't be far behind. Because then Andrew will move on to me.

If Andrew really does move on to me and does the same things to me that he's done to Preston, I think I would kill myself.

So I couldn't argue with him. I couldn't say anything.

I just have to see what happens and hope it doesn't come back to bite me later.

I don't even care that I spent most of this letter talking about myself. I don't know why I still write "Dear Robyn" at the top of every note. Maybe I should actually try to write something to you. Before Preston controls you so much you won't even be allowed to see me or talk to me.

For some reason, I feel like a day like that is coming. It's very close. And I'm not sure any of us are ready for it.

Later, then.

Ian

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