"What's that?" she asked, her heart beginning to pound as she recognized the messy scrawl on the page. Again no one answered her, "Oh come on!", she huffed, impatiently leaning across Kaci and snatching the piece of paper from the table.
She began to breathe heavily as she read out loud, her chest rising and falling rapidly as her heart rate increased. Her eyes began to fill up as her brain processed what she was reading.
Troy, Darlene, Malcolm, Mortimer, Sandi & Kaci,
I know I haven't been the easiest person to live with and for that I am truly sorry. I hope you all can find it in your hearts to forgive me, I don't know when I turned into this heartless person but I can promise you that from now on, I will try my hardest never to be that person again. Today I had my eyes opened for me in a way that I never dreamed possible. I learned that the one person I thought had my back. never really had it all. Which brings me to you Kaci.
It took me losing you to realise that you were the best thing that ever happened to me, but in hindsight, our vision is always 20/20. I know now that we were never meant to be, you and Mortimer were made for each other and I hope I have half of what you do with him, with someone one day. My only regret is that I messed up our friendship and hurt you so badly, from the bottom of my heart, I am truly sorry.
Sandi, what can I say French? We may not have always seen eye to eye but I know from first hand experience who's side I'd rather have you on. I owe you an apology for being such an ass so here goes, I'm sorry. P.S I know you don't sleep with anything moving, I was just jealous of your genuinely care free attitude. Your a beautiful soul, always have been, don't change.
Malcolm & Mortimer. Not much I can do except apologize and remind you fuckers how lucky you are to have such beautiful ladies on your arms. Take care of them. A part of me wishes we could have been friends but the past is the past and I can't change it. (Malcolm you still punch like a girl!)
Darlene, Beauty Queen, Stay Pretty! ;-)
Yea, we don't know each other that well but I can tell you're a cool guy. I apologize for my Bella's actions and I'm so sorry she did all of this to you. But I'm glad to see that you picked yourself up and didn't let it keep you down. Stay strong.
So guys, if you hadn't already guessed, I'm leaving and I'm not coming back. I need a fresh start and I can't get that here. There are too many memories and emotions in the Valley for me. I hope I haven't made your time in the house too miserable and I hope you can all forgive me. I never thought I'd leave the Valley but knowing what I know, I can't stay here, I have to go. I know this probably won't mean much to you but I am proud of you all for keeping your heads up and I'll say Congratulations now for when you all graduate. Don't party too hard!
Take care kids, I wish you all nothing but the best,
Bella scanned the letter again, desperately searching for her name but it wasn't there. She looked around the faces sitting at the table but she found no sympathy, it was clear that Troy had told them all about his past and the role Bella played in it. Suddenly, she threw the letter onto the table and saw red, lunging violently at Troy.
"This is all your fault!" she screamed at him, he took a step back holding his hands up in defence. "What? What did I do?!" Troy asked, astounded. "Are you serious right now Bella?!", Darlene asked, jumping to his defence.
Troy's jaw clenched, remembering how quick she'd been to believe that he'd done something so despicable previously. "Oh shut up bitch!" Bella snapped at Darlene but she quickly turned her anger back to Troy. "Why the hell did you have to turn up here?! If you'd just stay where you were none of this would have happened, Sam would still be here! This is all your fault, its your fault he's gone-", she yelled, tears flowing but Troy cut her off, having had enough.
"Oh will you just stop! Just stop it!" he roared, taking his hands away from his ears. "When are you going to take responsibility for your own actions Bella! No one did this except you, no one fucked up my life except you! Do you even know what you did? I had scholarships to sports colleges all over the country, gone! Gone faster than I could blink! My own family, as scarce as they were, deserted me. I was sixteen in a new town and all alone. The school, the very establishment that should have had my back, turned me out because they couldn't deal with the scandal. In the end do you know what decided my fate? Who could shout the loudest, the school or your daddy and guess who won? So I got shipped off to St. Claire, to some shitty school who's gym was the size of this damn kitchen with some half assed basketball team. No way was a scout coming to that school, and even if they had, you think they'd have touched me when I'd been accused of rape?! No. And you wanna cry about being dealt a shitty hand in life? Try having mine", he yelled at her angrily.
Tears began to flow down Kaci's cheeks, she hadn't realized how badly this had affected him. Mortimer squeezed her leg under the table and it didn't surprise her to see that his own eyes were glistening. Malcolm had gotten up from the table, wiping his face and walked towards the back door, while Darlene just looked stricken and pale faced. None of them could imagine going through the things Troy had, but Bella clearly just didn't care as she dismissed everything he'd just said. "Oh all you care about is something that happened when we we're teens, get over it! Life goes on! Sam's left me Troy! He's GONE! What part of that didn't you understand?! The love of my life has left me and if he doesn't come back I'll never forgive you! " she half sobbed half shouted, her voice breaking.
Mortimer was about to say something to Bella but Kaci stopped him. This was Troys fight. There was deathly silence for a while until Troy broke it. "I forgive you Bella". She stared at him strangely for a second, "Did you hear what I fucking said you dumb jock?!" she yelled. Troy nodded, "And I said, I forgive you". He looked at her for a few more seconds before he brushed past, leaving her astounded and headed up to his room. "Dude, wait up", Malcolm called, Mortimer followed suit. Darlene shook her head, squeezed Kaci's arm, flashing Bella a look of pure ice as she headed for the front door to go to work. Bella stood eyes shut tight, hugging herself as though she was cold. "Bella-" Kaci began but the other girl cut her short, "Don't Kaci. Just don't. I can't deal with you and your fucking perfection right now okay?", Bella snapped. Turning and storming up the stairs to her room. Half way up all reason left her and she began to run, thinking that maybe this was all another one of Sam's sadistic jokes but as she burst into the room she saw that wasn't the case. Everything that belonged to him was gone. Everything. She couldn't stay there without Sam. She wouldn't. She called him twice and left messages. The third time, the call wouldn't go through and a message played informing her that he had blocked number. The pain in her chest grew stronger.
She walked back over to the door and dialled another number."Daddy? Hey. . . No nothing Daddy, I'm fine, No I'm. . . . Oh Daddy, can I come home? NO!, No, don't come here, I'll make my way home, see you in an hour. . . okay, bye. . . Love you too". She hung up the phone, trying to hold the tears in. As she looked around the room the gravity of it all began to hit her and she slid down the door, tears falling too fast to stop them.
She wiped her face angrily, annoyed that she was crying over someone that clearly didn't care about her. She decided her never could have if he wasn't willing to put aside something stupid to stay with her. "Fuck him", she said to herself miserably. But as she wiped her eyes, she began to cry again, uncontrollably this time. Sam was gone, he was never coming back, and no matter how she tried to deny it, it was all her fault.