Chapter 13: Forgiving

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fan Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 190

Isabella sat at the round table with her eyes down to her plate, eating slowly and enjoying the taste of the slightly overcooked stir-fry Niall had graciously decide to prepare. Although it wouldn’t have been overcooked if she hadn’t distracted him by selling her soul for peace of mind. She had a week before Ethan would try to take her. She needed to try to be prepared to fight him off.

“Little fawn? Eat.” Killian coaxed softly into her ear, sitting to the right of her while Emory sat to the left, Kellie sat beside him. Louis beside Kellie, Harry beside Louis, Liam beside him, Niall sitting directly in front of Isabella and Zayn beside Killian.

The table was void of conversation as eyes continuously glanced at Isabella, expecting her to say something.

Isabella was deep in thought, although she was pulled from them when some of Emory’s stir-fry landed on her lap. She turned and glanced at the West born man and saw that he was attempting to feed himself with the plastic spoon that they had provided him with.

With his hands confined at the wrist in Velcro, it left them crossed and he was just not having much luck. It was going on his lap, her lap, Kellie’s lap and Isabella could tell that if Emory didn’t stop, he’d be wearing the plate as the looks he was receiving were enough to freeze water.

With a quiet sigh she put her own spoon down and reached over, taking the spoon from him gently and dipping it into his plate, bringing it up to Emory’s lips. Her green eyes observing unjudging.

Emory appreciated her gesture of kindness toward him gratefully. He was starving and even if the food was burnt, he was thankful to get anything at all.

“Thanks Elly.” Emory murmured, his voice barely above a whisper, somehow though it came out louder since the table was quiet.

“You’re welcome, Em.” Isabella returned in kind, feeding him another bite before her hands went to the glass of grape juice that Zayn had been kind enough to set out for their prisoner – abet a bit begrudgingly.

Isabella put the glass to Emory’s lips and saw his eyes close in heaven as the sugared drink tingled his tongue and woke his taste buds. Anything was better than the feeling and dryness of being gagged.

“We’re going to try leaving tomorrow at Sundown. I advise everyone to get as much sleep as they can tonight. We’ll make sleeping arrangements and schedule of who gets to lay in the bed. Ella is injured and Killian takes care of her the most so she and him have no schedules. It comes down to the six of us, Emory not included. A comforter and pillow have been set up in the corner for him. He should be comfortable there. I’ll look around to see if there was any other sleeping arrangements that Ethan was kind enough to leave but I doubt any considering.” Kellie spoke, his voice cutting through the air like a knife and disrupting the heavy silence.

“It’s alright, Kellie. I don’t expect you to give me favoritism. I’ll take the floor, it doesn’t bother me. Don’t worry about it. Killian can take the bed if he needs. I don’t need it.” Isabella smiled gently, knowing that Kellie was trying to be kind. She was a girl and she was the only one around for what could be a hundred miles but she still didn’t want to appear weak. She wanted to be strong – she wanted to make them proud. Unfortunately, her decision didn’t seem to be going over too well.

“I’m sleeping where you are, little fawn.” Killian replied loyally, taking another bite of his own food, chewing it and making a disgusted face before throwing the fork on his plate and standing up. “I can’t eat this, it tastes like rubber. Pancakes anyone?” He noticed barely anyone touched their food, well except for Emory but he looked like he’d eat anything offered at that moment.

The table turned into forms of undistinguishable voices as the boys all began to agree and talk over one another at once.

“I’ll take that as a yes.” Killian smiled, getting the stuff out to prepare it.

Isabella set Emory’s spoon down but he stopped her, his voice quiet.

“No, I’ll be okay with this. It’s more than I deserve. It’s all I want.” Emory said, his voice full of guilt.

Isabella looked at him before offering him the juice again but he shook his head. Something was bothering him.

“Aside the obvious, what’s wrong?” Isabella pressed, setting the glass back down.

“Nothing. I’m fine, An –Ella.” He corrected himself, letting his eyes drop to his plate, the spoon pushing against his lips. He took it without fight.

“Bloody pathetic. You know, Emory, if you’re trying to get us to feel sorry for you mate, it’s not happening. I hope you know that.” Louis said, not falling for green eyes sorrowful act.

“I’m not trying to convince you of anything, I’m not trying to do anything.” Emory responded with a wistful longing, his eyes not really there in that moment. They were defeated and worn, he looked lost and alone. Looking back at the other night, Isabella realized that, given the things he said weren’t any worse then what she had. If Isabella really mauled it over, she had been pretty brutal in the way she had talked about Kathy. She remembered the hurt in Emory’s eyes at her words. Though it still didn’t excuse his cocky demeanor – that too seemed to have died.

“Hey Em? Can I ask you something?” Isabella asked, setting the spoon down and forcing the glass to his lips, making him take a drink.

Emory swallowed the last of the grape juice and simply stared at her expectantly.

“You’re the captor, you have that control to ask whatever you’d like.” Emory shrugged before burping quietly.

Isabella looked at him for a moment in silence but cleared the awkwardness from her throat.

“Katherine and you, when –when we broke up; why did you? I just want to know. Was I not good enough? I never –I never understood.” Isabella stuttered, not sure on how to phrase the question.

Emory smiled sadly, looking into Isabella’s own eyes.

“It wasn’t that, bunny. In fact, when I broke up with you, I thought you deserved someone better than what I could ever be. When we dated, I forced feelings that I didn’t have and that is a mistake that I regret every day. When we kissed I thought that you should have been kissing someone else – someone with more worth. I should have been honest, I should have told you from the start. We grew up together, we were best friends –with the three of us there wasn’t anything we couldn’t accomplish. We were a power team, we were the trio of terror.” Emory’s smile grew a little and he laughed quietly at the memory.

Isabella mirrored his sad smile remembering all too well with an ache in her chest.

“I remember.” She nodded quietly as the boys listened to their conversation with interest. Isabella never talked about her younger days so getting a glimpse inside her past life was a treat.

“Kathy and I had a homework assignment, you were sick in bed with the flu –although that didn’t seem to stop you from sneaking out to go to that concert.” Emory continued, seeing Isabella’s eyes begin to light up at the memory and she let out a loud and wheezing laugh, putting a hand to her chest.

“God, what a disaster. I had a meet and greet and would have rather caught my death than miss out on meeting my idols. Bet you if I walked up to them today they’d still remember me.” Isabella laughed, which made the boys genuinely smile.

“I’m almost afraid to ask dove but what happened?” Niall pressed, seeing Isabella’s smile turn to a grin.

“Let’s just say, when it was my turn to meet the band I was so nervous that I threw up. I wasn’t going to puke on the floor so I grabbed the nearest object and puked into it. Sadly, the object turned out to be the lead singer’s lucky hat. He had it sitting on the table I was near and before I could even think about it –well, it wasn’t so lucky anymore.”

There was subtle laughter and looks of utter horror.

“Oh God, Luv, what happened after that?” Harry leant back into his chair, listening intently.

“Security escorted me out of the meet and greet, rather forcefully I might add and took me to my seat. What’s worse is it was as they were snapping a picture, so my digital camera captured the moment perfectly.” Isabella shook her head, Emory’s eyes silently laughing.

“Oh believe me, she never heard the end of it.”

Isabella chuckled.

“So much for my dreams of meeting and falling in love with him and having millions of his beautiful babies. Yaking in his lucky hat was certainly the deal breaker.”

Emory shook his head.

“You met the perfect one though. He’s standing over there at the stove. Trust me when I say, that man has more compassion in him than I could ever possess. Then and now. Small blessings come early or later in life, yours came into it when you needed it the most. What I do –what I did, I would never have been able to make you happy, not truly. When Kathy and I were working on the assignment we got hungry and went into the kitchen to cook and we both reached for the same thing at the same time. When our hands touched, I felt that spark – I had known right then that she was the girl I was going to marry. We fought it for months though because I was with you. For months, I tried to make you happy, I tried to convince myself that you were my perfect bunny and that I shouldn’t even think about Kathy because she, you –me, we were a trio, we were best friends.” Emory’s smile faded and his eyes dulled again, the pain in them evident. “I never meant for it to end the way it did. I never meant to break your heart. I just wanted you to be happy –I wanted to be happy and we weren’t going to be that if we stayed together. When we all fell out and a year came and went, Kathy was so bothered by it that the first time I asked for her hand, she told me she couldn’t. That she wanted to make it right with you. Did you know I proposed to that woman twenty-one times? On the twenty-second time I told her if she refused again, I was going to keep continuing to ask her every day until she accepted. So she said yes. She was counting on you to be her maid of honor. When you didn’t answer the invitation, she was devastated. I know she tried to reach out but you never reached back. I understand why. I understand more than anything.” Emory paused, his eyes turning away and the silent tears making their way down his cheeks. It hurt to remember the past, it hurt to remember those memories. He wiped his sorrow away.

I’m thankful for the good in my life, Em. I’m even thankful for some of the bad because you are right. Killian has been my light in the dark – all these boys have been. Louis and Harry kidnapped me, they didn’t know I was mixed up with Glen Saudimere. As you know I can hack –“ She saw the knowing smirk on Emory’s face return a little.

“Thanks for the straight A’s report card, by the way. I never did thank you for that awesome Christmas gift the one year. We were in seventh grade, weren’t we?” Emory recalled.

“Yeah, seventh or eighth. I didn’t have any money so I changed you and Kathy’s grades and test scores to the highest mark possible. It was easier than snapping my fingers, their system was an easy hack.” Isabella paused, seeing the smoke coming from the kitchen and Killian letting out a string of colorful curses a moment later. “Heartbeat? Your pancakes are burning.” Isabella chuckled playfully, hearing him trying to salvage the pan itself.

“Just a few of them.” Killian called back.

“Seems to be a pattern around here tonight. I believe a certain green eyed beauty is the cause of the distraction.” Niall teased with a tone of banter.

“Not beautiful.” Isabella disagreed and shook her head with a smile.

“Nope, not beautiful. You’re straight out gorgeous, a gorgeous desert viper.” Harry said with a chuckle.

“You are beautiful, Ella, love. I wish you’d stop bringing yourself down so much.” Zayn interjected.

“Oh, when I’m through she won’t, that I can promise. Confidence, compassion –it’s all going to be included in the lessons. We just need to get the fuck away from here first. Which we will attempt tomorrow,” Kellie piped in, standing up to help his brother in the kitchen when he saw Killian had ended up dropping and breaking a stack of plates. “Go sit your ass down before you hurt yourself, rookie! I’ll make them, go on, get.” He shooed his younger brother by three minutes from the kitchen.

Killian did as Kellie ordered and sat back down next to Isabella with a knowing smirk and wink.

“You sneaky sod.” Isabella whispered with a laugh, kissing his lips.

“You have amazing friends, bunny. Hold them tight and keep them close because friends like the ones you have here, they are rare to find. I’m sorry, to everyone. I know the apology doesn’t mean much and you all are probably thinking I’m saying this just to get an easier time out of my captivity but I’m not. I’m truly sorry about behaving the way I did. The news is painting a pretty brutal picture, I panicked. I’m sorry I said what I did. You have noble intentions and I’m sorry for what I said to Ella. Everything but being a fire bitch from hell, when she’s mad enough –flames fly. Take it from her someone who knew her best.” Emory watched Isabella pat his shoulder good naturedly.

“I’m not the same girl you knew, Em. I wish I was still that fiery bitch but – I barely have strength to open my eyes anymore. This group has been my fire through the dark, they’ve guided me, walked beside me and cared for me when I couldn’t. My story is a very long story –one I don’t think I can really get into tonight but I will tell you, that I have loved and lost. I have known the deep pain of it. I’m truly sorry for your loss Emory. I’m sorry I wasn’t there for you or Kathy when you needed me to be. I was running for my life but if I had known – if I knew she was dying, I would have come back and made it right. I’m sorry I’ll never get a chance to. You deserved your happiness, you deserved to have found Kathy and she’s lucky to have had you. I’m lucky to have grown up with two amazing friends and parents. I’m struggling to hold onto the memories but all mine are filed away in my mind, I don’t have that physical reminder. I only have what I can remember and that’s what makes me so angry. That’s what fuels this anger I can’t shake – Glen took everything from me, he even had Ethan break my toes. I want to break free now, I want to have what you and Kathy had. I want my freedom and no matter how much I swim with the current, it’s going to keep trying to drag me down.”

Emory put his bound hands to Isabella’s shoulder, using his thumb to rub a small bit.

“When Kathy was diagnosed, when all of that was happening we found out she was pregnant, she had been pregnant with a girl. Her body succumbed to the cancer when she was six months along. The last words were the baby’s name. Katherine Anastasia Taylor. The initials spelled KAT. She named the baby before she died. We had already decided on Katherine but nothing else was discussed, she said she’d know when it came to her. She loved you, Ella. Right to the end and she’d understand if she knew what had happened.” Emory reassured, looking at the expressions of the other boys. Some were closely guarded and unreadable and some were sorrowful but it wasn’t about them. It was about forgiving and they both had plenty to be sorry for.

“I’m sorry for your loss, Em. I’m sorry for what I said about Kathy. I understand now too.” Isabella said and reached over to hug Emory, his bound hands trying their best to return it.

“And I’m sorry for yours, you’ve lost a lot by the sounds of it.” Emory frowned.

“I have but I’ve gained a lot too. I met the best men I could ever hope to meet and I met my heartbeat. I wouldn’t be here now if it weren’t for them. It’s so hard living Em, especially when all you feel like doing is giving up but they haven’t let me, they’re giving me my reason to hang on. I’m hanging on because when I’m ready, Glen Saudimere will die. He has to for what he did to my parents, for what he took.” Isabella went quiet and Killian’s arms were around her, comforting her dark thoughts with a gentle kiss.

“Put them to bed, little fawn. Not tonight.” Killian whispered in her ear and petted her hair.

Isabella closed her eyes, the conversation coming to silence.

“What happened to your baby?” Isabella asked cautiously, noticing Emory’s thoughts had begun to drift again, seemingly to his own dark corner of his mind like hers often did.

“They performed an emergency C-section but by the time they got to the baby, it had been too late. Ethan performed the procedure. He stayed with me and Kat, about the only time that I ever saw Ethan’s eyes show any kind of emotion. He tried so hard to save them both but he couldn’t. Kathy had been too weak and Kat’s heart had been too frail. They’re buried in Red Blossom cemetery. I go up there every weekend and take a few books. Kathy loved reading so I go and read to them. She loved those action romance books and I have a kid’s book I read to Ana – had. Evidently my cabin is gone?”

“Yeah, sorry mate, it exploded the moment we were down the road but Ethan left some stuff for you in a box.” Harry told him, standing up and bringing back a medium sized box, dropping it in front of his chair before sitting back down again.

Emory nodded a thanks but left the box untouched, he just didn’t have the heart to look in it right then.

Although, they didn’t really have time to discuss much else before the door to the bunker burst open, Ethan standing at the threshold of it.

“Honey, I’m home.” He yelled sardonically, a maddening smile plastered on his lips and a gun in his hand.

Submitted: March 20, 2015

© Copyright 2020 VanitySorrowHeart. All rights reserved.


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