tagRomanceScared Sara Ch. 02

Scared Sara Ch. 02

byMarsAres©

Thank you every_horizon and LadyCibelle for editing.

....................

The next weeks were torture for me. Lucien seemed to be everywhere I was. In class, at the Library, Cafeteria, in my discussion groups, along the corridors, around campus, even at the apartment! And he looked so good too, damn him.

I was trying my best to follow Lucien's advice. I tried to be more pleasant to people and had to bite my tongue whenever I felt like being sarcastic or rude. If I disagreed, I gave my views in a more tactful way instead of calling that person an idiotic worm not worth the air it breathed.

It seemed to be working. If you were nice to people, generally they'll be nice back to you. Except for hardcore creeps like Blake Harrington and his gang. Now those pigs were not worth the air they breathed!

I was also running out of stories to give Helen. She's been pestering me to tell her what happened between Lucien and me and I've been evasive.

She came and sat beside me one Friday night while I was watching TV. "The guys, which includes Lucien, and I are going out tonight. I want you to come too." Helen made it a statement of fact and not a request.

"I don't want to, thank you," I replied in a bored voice.

"If you don't come willingly, I'm going to get Lucien to carry you out of here!" Helen threatened.

"He won't."

"How sure are you he won't?"

"I'm sure. I know Lucien."

"Oh yeah? When and how did you get to know Lucien so well?"

"Oh Helen," I laughed. "Give it up okay? There's nothing, nor ever has been anything going on between Lucien and me. End of story."

"Really? Then why are you crying almost every night? And why does Lucien look at you like a lovesick pup?" Helen demanded.

"He does not!" I denied hotly, turning to glare at her.

"From the way he looks at you, I'd say he loves you and from your crying, I'd also say that you love him. So, what's the problem?" Helen asked with a puzzled frown.

"Helen, can we drop the subject. Please?" I muttered through gritted teeth.

"No, I will not drop the subject. Sara, I'm your friend and I want to help. I know you're miserable though you pretend as if everything's fine. Please talk to me."

"There is nothing to talk about," I growled, glaring at the TV.

Helen sighed. "You've got to learn to trust people Sara. Not everyone's out to get you, you know. You've got friends who care about you, I care about you. Barry and Mike care about you--."

"No they don't," I interrupted. "Barry tolerates me because of you and Mike couldn't care less what happens to me."

"And me?" Helen asked sadly.

"Oh Helen, I'm sorry! You're the only person who ever took the trouble to look beyond my act and see the real me. I really, really appreciate that and I do trust you. I know you won't do anything to hurt me."

"Neither would Lucien you know."

I sighed. "Did I ever tell you about my cousin Shari?"

Helen shook her head looking puzzled.

"Shari is the youngest and only daughter in her family and spoilt rotten. She's very naïve and rather innocent because her dad and 3 brothers are very protective of her.

"All of us cousins are crazy over bikes and we often go for biker's rally and such. Last summer, we all went for this huge rally.

"There we met Emilio Cortes. God Helen, he was gorgeous! He seemed like such a nice guy. Considerate, charming, a regular gentleman, even though he looked like every girl's dream of the forbidden bad boy.

"He zeroed in on Shari and she fell for him, hard! He talked her into going away with him after the rally and we only knew about it when Shari called my aunt and uncle and told them she's staying with Emilio and not coming back. Our entire family begged her to come home, she was still in school for heaven's sake and such an innocent! Nothing worked and she wouldn't tell us where she was. My uncle had to put investigators on their trail. When we finally caught up with them, it was almost too late.

"Emilio turned out to be an abusive bastard. He abused her not just physical but mentally and psychologically as well. By the time we got to her, she was pregnant, with fresh and old bruises and cuts. She thought she deserved everything he'd done to her, that it was her fault."

I was crying as I remembered what Shari was like when she got back. She'd talk to me for hours telling me her experience with Emilio. He was a sick, sick bastard and the frightening thing was, he didn't act or look like he could do such things. I remembered that I was half in love with him myself during the rally.

Helen held me in her arms as I sobbed.

"You know what frightens me the most Helen? Even after all he'd done, Shari still believes he loves her. She says he beat her up to 'correct' her faults. That is so sick!" I said clenching my fist, tears of anger and frustration coursing down my cheeks.

"When we met Emilio, we all liked him and thought he was such a wonderful guy. How could all of us have been so wrong Helen? How can I trust my own judgment ever again? How do I know Lucien won't turn out to be another Emilio? I can't Helen, I won't ever take the chance. After Shari I vowed that no man was going to do that to me. Ever!"

"You poor darling," Helen said softly, holding me tight while I cried on her shoulder. Helen didn't know what to say but she understood Sara better now, why she was so defensive. And she pitied Lucien. If he really loved Sara, he had an uphill battle to convince her to trust him.

The doorbell rang then and I hurriedly wiped my tears and got up. "Enjoy yourself," I said and hurried to my room.

Helen opened the door to let the boys in. "Have a seat first guys, I'll just be a few minutes."

"Is Sara joining us?" Lucien asked.

Helen turned and looked at Lucien sadly, "No, she's not."

"Has something happened?" Lucien asked worriedly, noting the strained look on Helen's face.

Helen just shook her head sadly. Seeing the expression on her face, Lucien didn't believe her. "I'm going to talk to Sara," he said walking towards her room.

Helen grabbed his hand, "I don't think that's a good idea at the moment Lucien."

Seeing the mutinous look on his face, she added, "Trust me on this Lucien. This is not a good time."

"Is she okay?" he asked worriedly.

"As okay as she'll ever be. Give her time Lucien."

Running a hand through his hair in frustration, Lucien nodded reluctantly and walked to the window to stare out moodily into the night. By this time Barry and Mike were looking from Lucien to Helen interestedly. Barry raised an enquiring brow at Helen but she shook her head and mouthed silently, 'tell you later' at him.

I heard the murmur of voices in the living room and knew Lucien was out there. I wanted so badly to just accept his love and not remember Shari and Emilio. Lucien always seemed so nice and considerate but then, a small voice at the back of my mind would whisper, 'Emilio was like that too' and I'd get scared.

I continued to ignore Lucien though he still managed to be everywhere I was. I was sure he was doing this on purpose.

During one long weekend in February I had a family gathering. All my uncles, aunts and cousins usually turn up for this.

As I was leaving for class on Thursday morning my cell rang.

<"Hey Sara, its Bill. What time do you finish class today?">

"3.30, why?"

<"I'll come by to pick you up at 4 then.">

"Pick me up? What for?"

<"You are going up to Uncle David's right?">

"Yeah, but I'm riding my bike up there."

<"Oh no you're not you little devil! Aunt Helena called, I'm supposed to drive you up in my car. She said I could even hog tie you, just make sure you don't drive up in this weather on that hell bike of yours,"> he chuckled.

"Mom did not say that!" I replied hotly.

<"Wanna bet?">

"Oohh, so 'iddle Billy's gonna be big, bad Sara's keeper?" I cooed sarcastically at my cousin.

<"Unfortunately"> Bill growled.

I laughed, "'kay Billy, see you at four" and I gave him directions to my apartment.

Billy's a lot older than me and practicing law with a large legal firm in town close to my college. I have a feeling that mom and dad has designated him to sort of watch over me.

The family gathering was fun as usual. Shari was there as well with her little baby boy. He was so adorable with his black hair and dark eyes.

"How are you Shari?" I asked when I saw her. She was looking a whole lot better than the last time I saw her. But her dark eyes still looked slightly haunted.

"I'm okay," she assured me. "Recovering. Some days are good, some not so. But there's been more good days than bad lately and little Umar's a godsend," she smiled looking at her baby.

I had long talks with Shari during that weekend and she told me about her therapy sessions.

"Dr. Quinzelle's been telling me I need to look at what happened and make up my own mind about it. Put it in the proper perspective and learn from the experience. But it's hard. I'm not like you Sara, you're strong, confident and smart," Shari said looking at me with sad eyes.

If she only knew...

"When I was with him, I couldn't think straight. He just swept me along. He could talk you into believing anything he says when he looks at you... do you remember that Sara; Those dark eyes of his, so passionate and sincere?" Shari's voice was quiet and her words brought back memories of that rally.

Yes, I remembered Emilio... eyes that looked at you with such heat as if you were the only woman in the world for him. Furthermore, when he spoke, whatever he said in that rich, hypnotic voice made perfect sense.

I shook my head sadly. "If he had really loved you Shari, he would never have hurt you the way he did. He was an attractive, compelling man, I don't deny that, but that was all an act."

"Yes, that's what Dr. Quinzelle said too. And at an intellectual level, I do agree but... it's difficult to make your heart stop loving someone you know?"

"Shari, don't tell me you still love that bastard?" I asked, aghast.

"No, no," Shari shook her head, "Of course I don't. But you know I've always been a romantic fool and now I'm so afraid of falling in love again. I don't want another Emilio."

"What does Dr. Quinzelle say?" I asked.

"She says I need to try and put it behind me, that there are many good people out there and I can't judge all men by his standard. There are plenty of decent men who can be trusted. I need to move forward with my life and not dwell on the past. But I also need to learn from my experience and to believe that what happened was in no way my fault."

"Of course it wasn't your fault Shari," I assured her. "He's a sick bastard."

My talks with Shari got me thinking about Lucien. Wasn't it time I move forward too and stop thinking that all men are like Emilio?

.....................................

I was sitting in the lounge of the boy's dormitory waiting for Lucien. There were a few guys and girls in the lounge with me, watching TV, listening to music and generally hanging out.

One of the boys' said that Lucien wasn't back yet so I was sitting facing the entrance to make sure I wouldn't miss him when he walked in. I was extremely nervous and fidgety. I wasn't sure exactly what I was going to say when I saw him.

I'd been waiting for about half an hour and was ready to go when the door opened and Blake Harrington walked in with two of his friends.

"Well, well, look's who's here. Waiting for me darling?" he drawled walking towards me. Sitting on the arm of my chair, he pulled me to him.

I flinched and pushed him away. I didn't want to tangle with Blake now.

He slid into my chair, dragged me on his lap and kissed my neck, groping me roughly. I pushed him, jumping up off his lap. I badly wanted to hit him but didn't want to cause a scene here.

He took the decision away from me when he got up and grabbed me again. I was enraged, how dare the creep maul me like it was his right?! I whirled around, punched and kicked him, sending him crashing into a bookcase a few feet away. After that, I dragged him up and went on hitting him. I was in an absolute rage and had tuned out my surroundings. I just concentrated on reducing Blake to a bloody pulp. If I break every bone in his body then so be it.

I vaguely felt hands trying to pull me away from Blake and kicked those away too. I was knocked down unexpectedly and my head hit the floor with a sharp crack. I saw stars and blacked out for a moment. When I came to, there were 4 or 5 guys piled on top of me, one held my arms, another held my feet and someone had wrapped my hair in his fist and more guys were on my torso and hips.

"Get off me, I'm going to kill him!" I yelled and struggled frantically, trying to dislodge them off me.

"Sara, calm down. It's Lucien. Sara, listen to me, stop this!"

I calmed down enough to recognize Lucien on top of me and looked up into his worried eyes, his glasses were askew and it looked like there was a nasty cut on his forehead. I closed my eyes, taking deep breaths to calm myself. Slowly I felt my rage subside.

"You can let me up now guys, I'm okay," I said relatively calm after a while.

The guys looked uncertainly at each other, not sure whether to let her up or not. Blake was a battered, bloody mess a few feet away. They'd only managed to immobilize her when 5 of them rushed her at once and one guy managed to grab her legs tripping her.

"Let me up" I growled. "I promise I won't hit him anymore, okay?"

Reluctantly the guys got off and Lucien helped me up. I slapped his hands away glaring at him.

Hands on my hips I looked at the bloody mess that was once Blake Harrington. "So, is he dead?" I sneered at Blake's sidekick, Barney Wilson.

"He's not, no thanks to you, you hellish bitch!" Barney yelled at me. "You've broken his arm and I think you broke his ribs as well. You're going to get it this time Danilov, the Harringtons will prosecute. This is the end of the road for you!"

I laughed a bitter sneering laugh at Barney. "The Harringtons will prosecute, I'm so scared" I said scornfully. "Tell the Harringtons 'happy prosecuting'. They have absolutely no idea who they're dealing with."

"What the fuck are you trying to say?" Brett Mortensen demanded. Brett is the other friend that made the unholy triumvirate of the triple Bs, the core of Blake's gang. But between Barney and Brett, Brett was the smarter one.

"Tell them they'll be meeting the Tanners in court," I said with a cynical smile.

"Who're you're trying to kid, bitch," Barney sneered. "Why should the Tanners care what happens to an upstart, nowhere kid like you?"

I clenched my fist and would have attacked Barney had Lucien not held me back. "Let me introduce you to the daughter of Helena Tanner...Danilov," I said giving him a low mock bow.

When I straightened up the world started spinning sickeningly and would have fallen if I hadn't clutched at Lucien's arm. Taking deep breaths to calm my spinning head, I said mockingly to Barney, "See you around, losers."

Letting go of Lucien's arm, I walked as steadily as I could out of the lounge. Lucien tried to put his arms around me but I slapped them away.

"Don't do that," I hissed. "I can't let them see I'm hurt. Just walk close to me." I could see Barry and Mike were also with us.

When the crowd at the lounge couldn't see us anymore, I clutched Lucien and fell into his arms in a dead faint. When I came to, I was lying on a bed and had a cold compress on my head. Lucien, Barry and Mike surrounded me, looking worried.

I sat up and the world spun sickeningly again and I grabbed on to Lucien to steady myself. I touched the back of my head and winced when I felt a big lump and stickiness. My fingers were covered with blood.

"We need to get you to the hospital" Lucien said in a shaky voice when he saw the blood. "Barry can you drive? I'll carry Sara" and he gathered me in his arms.

"No, wait! I need to call Billy first."

"We'll call him later, you need to get to the hospital now," Lucien said urgently.

"No" I said stubbornly. I dug in my pocket and pulled out my cell. Thank god it wasn't damaged. I tried to focus on the screen to dial but couldn't and nearly blacked out again.

Handing the phone to Lucien I said, "Call Billy and tell him what happened. I need him to tell us what to do. The Harrington's are going to prosecute remember? Evidence is crucial if we're to meet them in court" I explained. Showing him my blood covered fingers I said, "This is evidence."

Lucien made the call and I heard him explain to Billy what happened in the lounge. He handed the phone to me after that.

<"Sara, how are you?">

"Not too good."

<"How bad did you beat him up?">

"Quite bad I think. Some broken bones and bleeding and bruising all over, the last I saw."

<"How many times do we have to tell you, you can't just go beating people up. There are consequences you know. You can't keep expecting your mom and me to bail you out every time you do this!"> Billy said angrily.

"Damn you Billy Tanner! This time it's not my fault, he was groping me, it's self defense!" I yelled furiously and regretted it immediately as my head started spinning again.



"Yes" I answered weakly.



"He squeezed by breast, shoved his hand into my pants and kissed my neck" I said. I was mad at him. Why does my family always think it's my fault when I get into a fight? Sheesh!

<"Was anyone around who saw him grope you?">

"Yeah, there were a few boys and girls around at the time."

<"Okay, let me speak to Lucien now"> I passed the phone to Lucien.

He spoke to Billy for a few minutes, saying 'yes' a few times then I heard Lucien say : "Yes, Barry and Mike to get witnesses from the lounge and I drive Sara to the ER. She's been through an 'attempted sexual assault' and she's to be examined by the 'rape victim' unit."

He then passed the phone back to me.

<"You heard all that?"> Billy asked me.

"Yes."

<"I want you to let Lucien handle everything, understand? Just follow what he says and don't argue! This is not the time to be stubborn.">

I didn't reply. I may be slightly bashed up at the moment but that doesn't mean I can't take care of my self.

<"Sara, promise me that you'll let Lucien take care of everything?">

I still didn't reply. <"Damn you Sara! Can't you, just for once, be reasonable?">

"Okay, okay," I sighed. "I promise I'll let Lucien handle everything." I could see Lucien grinning when he heard that.

<"Thank you"> Billy breathed a sigh of relief. <"You still bruise easily don't you? Make sure they take photos when they examine you. His finger marks on your body would help our case">

Lucien explained to Barry and Mike what Billy wanted them to do then gathered me in his arms to carry me to his car. "Lucien, let me down. Somebody might see."

"You can hardly walk Sara. Remember, you promised Billy you'd let me handle everything?" he insisted and went on walking. I kept quiet and damned Billy for getting that promise out of me.

We reached ER but before Lucien could tell the staff anything, somebody demanded, "Did you do this to her?" when he saw my beat up condition.

"No!"

"Who are you then?" he asked.

"I'm her boyfriend." I looked at Lucien wide eyed. When did that happen?

I was thoroughly examined like I had actually been raped. They took photos of me unclothed. True enough, Blake's finger marks were on my breast and buttocks where he'd clutched me, he'd even given me a hickey on my neck, bastard! I wanted to beat him up all over again.

They wheeled me out on a wheelchair just wearing a hospital gown as my other clothes had been bagged as evidence. My head was bandaged and my cuts treated. I hugged Billy who was waiting with Lucien.

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