Authors: B. A. Wolfe
Copyright © 2013 by B.A. Wolfe
All rights reserved.
Cover Designed by Kari Ayasha at Cover to Cover Designs
Cover Photographer: Dustin Myhaver
Cover Model: Katherine Donahue
Interior Designed by Kassi Cooper
No part of this book may reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without the written permission of the author, except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
All of your support and encouragement has brought me to where I am today. Without it, I would have never had the courage to chase my dreams. I love you all
to the moon and back.
many forms and phrases. Get away, stay away, far away, go away, went away, and move away, but the term that best fits my situation... Run away.
Girls like me don’t run away. We’ve had our lives handed to us on a silver platter. So why was I running away? All because of one night — one stupid night that ruined every little thing that I had worked so hard for. I needed someone to tell me that life wasn’t ending and that things would be okay. I wanted a Band-Aid to cover my injuries, but no bandage was large enough for the wounds I’d inflicted upon myself. What I truly needed was my best friend.
So I headed to Alamosa to see Melanie. She was the only person I trusted to know what I should do. Life wasn’t turning out the way I had planned. I was going to school and had a 4.0 GPA. I was little ‘Miss Perfect’, just how my parents raised and wanted me to be. Now, everything was in jeopardy, and my mistake threatened to haunt my future. If it weren’t for my blunder, I wouldn’t have realized how messed up my so-called perfect life actually was. That’s why I needed to see Melanie. Unlike my parents, she wouldn’t judge me or tell me how she expected more from me.
The only problem? I had never actually been to Adams State College to visit her. With GPS in tow, I felt positive that I’d be okay. Considering I was always decent at taking directions and orders from everyone else, following the GPS commands should be no different. The only enjoyable part was that it wasn’t making me call it Mother or Father.
“Hey, Mel,” I said into the phone.
“Hey girl. I hope you’re on the road.” Mel’s tone was somewhat somber. She knew that desperation was what prompted this visit.
“Yeah, I’m on I-25 right now. I just wanted to let you know I’m on my way. I need you right now, Mel,” I confessed in a shaky voice.
“I know. Just get here and we’ll figure it out.”
She was my rock, the only person who ever loved me for being me. I didn’t want to go to school to get a Bachelor’s in finance, let alone a Master’s degree too. I had other dreams for my life, but they weren’t acceptable, or allowed in my family. My parents had expectations for me, and if I delivered, I was their perfect daughter. If I deviated from their plan, there would be hell to pay. That’s what I was told the day that I applied for colleges. I didn’t have a problem getting into school. I was smart and enjoyed learning. But, the chosen path of finance had no interest to me whatsoever. I felt trapped, and now my mistake was forcing me to drop everything and run to Melanie, my lifeboat. She was the only thing that was keeping me from drowning a long torturous death. This time, Melanie was pulling me to shore.
“Thanks, Mel. I don’t know what I’d ever do without you.”
“You’d be lost and scared. Same as me, Cass. Drive carefully. Call me when you get close to Alamosa, okay?”
“You got it. I’ll call you soon. Love you,” I replied and ended the call. I tossed my phone in the cup holder in case it rang again. It wouldn’t be my parents, of course. They never called until after my grades had been posted for the semester. I had grown accustomed to that though. The ‘less is more’ theory applied to every situation when it came to things between my parents and me.
The drive down was uneventful and somewhat torturous. It was turning into the very definition of what a Sunday afternoon drive would feel like. I never ventured anywhere outside of the Denver area. The further south I drove, the more differences I noticed. There were farms, more trucks on the road, and the heat was just a little more unbearable. My exit was coming up, so I veered left and continued down the ramp, finally leaving I-25. I had never driven a longer stretch of highway in my life. The little digital box displayed that I needed to head east for at least another 100 miles. Leaving before sunrise was the only thing going for me. The towns I zipped through were small and brought to mind a time before there were city skyscrapers, fancy cars, or technology.
An hour or so later, my monotonous drive changed to terrifying. A loud pop stung my eardrums as my wheel shook erratically in my trembling hands. My stomach dropped. I gripped the steering wheel tighter, trying to fight the force that was veering me left, but it wasn’t working. My body stiffened as I saw what was in front of me. I tried to slam my foot on the brake as an impossibly large tree stood firm in my path. It was no use, too little, too late. We collided, and my body flew forward. My head bounced into the steering wheel, and then my seatbelt locked which jerked me back into the headrest. Steam poured from the hood of my car like an awakening volcano. The throbbing in my head immediately settled in. My breathing became uncontrollable, and I felt trapped beneath my seatbelt. I wanted to escape from its tight hold, and as simple as unlocking it should have been, panic was leaching in. I pulled at the belt and fought as it kept me contained like a prisoner. The harder I tugged, the more I realized that my head wasn’t the only part of my body in massive amounts of pain. My neck muscles had tightened and barely wanted to turn my head. I forgot about my seatbelt and put my hand to my chest as the pounding increased. If others were around, they would have been able to hear the beating. It didn’t take long for a second wave of terror to set in. My body was shaking uncontrollably as I realized I was alone and helpless.
Hearing a small tap on my window, I looked over to see a guy about my age with eyes as wide as I imagined mine were.
“Hold still. I’m calling for help right now. You were just in an accident. Your airbag didn’t deploy, and you hit your head pretty hard. I need you to stay put.” The young guy pulled his phone out of his pocket.
I lifted my hand to my throbbing forehead, and when I pulled it away, sure enough, blood covered it. I couldn’t help but let the welling tears uncontrollably trickle down my face.
“I know you’re scared, Sweetheart, but help is on the way,” he said calmly.
Scared didn’t even begin to cover it. I looked down at the seatbelt and sighed when I realized that all I had to do was unlock it. Clicking the buckle, and finally releasing myself from the strong grip it had on my body, I felt an ounce of freedom as I pushed it to my side. The door wouldn’t budge when I tried to open it, and so, the torment continued. I pounded my hands on the window with all my remaining energy, drawing the guy’s attention back to me.