CHAPTER 1: should've said no

It was one in the afternoon and I was lying on our roof listening to my I-pod. I thought about what happened this past few days, to be honest it wasn't one of the memories that I would like to recall but I have to understand why? How? What?

Why did he have to cheat me with my BEST FRIEND? Why did she let it go on this long? How did they manage to do this to me? How long has this been going on? How come I didn't even sense anything? How did he manage to look me in the eyes and tell me that he loved me? How can she do this to me when I practically treated her like my own sister? How can I be such a fool? And the Question that keeps pounding on my head What did I do wrong?

I let a tear roll down my cheek, it was a sunny afternoon and the light blue sky stretched over me. I was remembering everything that Travis and I planned together. I remembered the day that we really got together, it was April 16, 10 days after my birthday we were on the 8th grade and I was just 13 years old while he was 14. It was lunch time and he surprised me, he sang my favorite song and offered me white roses, my favorite flower, the cafeteria was silent and I told him YES.

After that he was jumping like he was the happiest boy in the universe he kept hugging me like he couldn't believe it and he told me that we would be together until our hair was gray and we had lots of grandchildren. He told me that I was the most beautiful girl that he met and would ever meet; he told me that he loved me more than his own life; he told me that we would have a house with a bedroom that I would paint myself, he told me that the bedroom could be my own canvas and that he wouldn't care even though the bedroom would have bright colors that every time the sun hit it, it would actually be blinding, he told me he wouldn't care because it made me happy.

I didn't realize that I was already crying, how could this happen? I thought he really loved me, I gave him my whole heart, I loved him so much and now that it's over I felt my world shatter. He broke my heart at the time that I needed him the most, when my dad told me that my mom was sick, that she was dying, I didn't know what to do and I went to Travis' house because I thought Rach; my best friend, was still out of town. When I got there the reaction of Michael; Travis' younger brother, should have told me what was coming but I didn't think they could do that, so carelessly I went into Travis' room without knocking, because I sent him a text message that I would be coming over, then I saw them having passionate sex while my world shattered to million pieces that I knew I couldn't put back together again.

At the time I didn't know what to do, I believed in everything that they told me, they were the two people in my life that I trusted, I didn't know what to believe in anymore. They betrayed me big time and I couldn't even fight back, I couldn't even yell at them, I couldn't even punch him and I couldn't even slap her. I just wanted to go curl back in bed and pretend that this was all just a nightmare except that I can't do that and this isn't just another nightmare because this was my life.

So instead of any of the things that I would love to do, I knocked on the already open door and said "hi" with a weak voice. At that moment they looked at me with utter horror and Travis' cursed while I ran down the stairs crying my eyes out. Travis' and Rachael kept calling me and sending messages, so I decided to smash my phone with the intensity of anger that I was feeling towards them and then I bought a new phone.

The day after I found out about them was Monday but I didn't go to school because I didn't feel like going and I hadn't gotten to sleep, I was crying throughout the night until my eyes felt so dry and I couldn't cry anymore. I skipped school on Tuesday because Alex; my brother, decided to come home from college because of what happened to mom, it was a relief that he was coming back because he was like my rock, when things seem to be falling downhill he's there to comfort me even for just a while also he was like the sister that I never had.

So that day when I saw him at the airport, I forgot everything, ran to him then cried. Like the old times he pats my head then told me that it's gonna be okay over and over again. I wished that it would actually turn out that way and everything will be back to normal but even I know that's too good to be true.

After crying to my brother I told him that I needed someone to talk to and like always, he knew what I meant so we went home in silence but it was a comfortable silence. When we reached home I hurriedly dragged him to my room and spilled everything that happened, half the time I was nervous because I figured that he would call up Alan, Austin and Axel Ashford; my three other brothers but then I thought that he deserved it.

After I told him what happened he was already red with anger and I was crying again. He wanted to beat Travis up and I wanted him to but my rational mind won out and I told him that if he did that I would run away from home and kill myself so he settled for throwing darts at Travis' picture and for 30 minutes I joined him but I couldn't get mad at Travis' for long, it's an old habit, a really bad habit and I found myself telling Alex that I wanted to rest for a while then I went back to my room, crawled to my bed and cried as quietly as I can.

I fell asleep crying and I dreamed of us again but this time it wasn't the usual nightmare of them having sex, no, this time we were kids again and I dreamt of the day that Travis and I met. It was the first day of kindergarten and I was wearing my favorite light blue dress, my long kind-of curly black hair was ponytailed into a tangled mess but it was pretty to look at. I still remembered that day clearly because that day my mom woke me up and told me that I was attending a costume party so I needed to be ready, my mom said that I was going as a princess and I was so happy because I liked dress-up and being pretty so I agreed immediately. That day, Travis was dressed up as the prince and he told me that I looked pretty and he asked if I would mind to be his princess, that day when it was time to go home I told my mom that I finally found my Prince Charming.

I woke up because of my alarm clock; I still didn't want to go to school because I felt like I was crushed, stomped on, grated then squashed. In short I felt like a total mess but I've missed enough school and I won't risk my being part of the honors for them so with all my will power I got out of bed showered, blow dried my hair then got ready for school. I threw on my most comfortable shirt and my favorite hoodie with a pair of jeans and my lovable sneakers, I didn't really mind what I wear to school because every morning I kept remembering Travis saying "I don't really mind what you wear babe because your just as beautiful every time I look at you".

Then I thought, this has got to end because I have to move on so I threw on my v-neck shirt with low riding jeans and a little bit of face make-up. Deciding that I was ready for school I ran down the stairs to find that the normal morning scene, mom cooking breakfast and dad sitting in the dining table reading the newspaper while drinking coffee, was gone and it could never go back again instead I found Alex in a pink apron cooking breakfast, I swear though I was in a bad mood that picture made me laugh and because I laughed Alex became aware of me and he knitted his eyebrows as if figuring out how to solve a problem. I was the one he was studying, it figures though because he is a psychology student after all.

"Are you okay?" he asked in a confused tone

"Yup" I managed to lie without choking and even though he noticed that I was lying he didn't press me for details again one of the reasons why I love him so much.

"Are you really going to school?" he asked in an amused voice

"Yep, I actually kinda need to already, I mean I've lost my Best Friend and Boyfriend already why do I need to purposely lose my Academic awards too?" I say carelessly

"If you say so" was his only comeback

We ate breakfast while talking about his college life and from the looks of it he really is enjoying his life, good for him, after eating breakfast he gave me a ride to school and we listened to our favorite song, "Better than Revenge by Taylor Swift", I know it's kinda feminine for him but it really is our favorite song and it really is ironic how fitting it is for me now.

We entered the school gates and I saw Travis in that instant I wanted to go out the car and run for the house, slam the door and wait until Alex came back then I noticed that he was looking for someone, I bet he was looking for Rachael, his new Girlfriend then I hugged Alex one more time inhaling his homey scent, I needed to feel at home just to get me through the day. Who knew I was actually such a baby? So I get in the school ignoring every stare that I encounter then a hand so familiar that my stomach felt funny held my shoulder and I felt rooted to my spot. I turned around and my biggest nightmare just had to come true, it was Travis looking like he didn't sleep and cried the whole night but he still managed to look immaculate with his tousled brown hair and chocolate colored eyes just looking at him made me want to hug and kiss him, I wanted to pretend that nothing happened, that he didn't destroy us but I already woke up from the fairytale and I couldn't just forget that he screwed my Best friend behind my back.

I looked at him with my own eyes that looked sore from crying and did what I know how to do, I forced a weak smile and spoke "Hey Travis' long time no see"

"Please don't do this" he said

"Don't do what?" I asked playing innocent because I never liked confrontation scenes and I don't want to see him get hurt though he did hurt me I still love him for what it's worth.

"Please don't pretend like everything's normal" he said

"What do you want me to do Travis? Tell you that I'm happy?" I said looking into his eyes with a pleading expression

"No, I want you to at least let me explain then maybe we could be friends again" he said with a hopeful expression

I couldn't believe what he said, friends? Does he seriously think that I'm that dumb? He fucking cheated on me! And he thinks I could be his friend? That's when my anger rose and I did what I didn't want to do.

"Let you explain? Are you serious? I walked in on you fucking my Best friend! MY best friend of all people! –The hallway was quiet, everyone was listening to me and I couldn't contain my anger any longer- I loved you! I fucking gave you everything that I had! I trusted both of you! And I don't need to hear any explanations because if you really loved me, if you really meant everything that you told me whatever the circumstances you would always think of a reason to not cheat on me! You said you loved me, we were happy weren't we? – I paused- what? Will you tell me that I didn't satisfy your needs? I let you take my virginity! What else? Will you tell me that I wasn't as good as Rachael? I can't do this anymore Travis, I can't be your friend and I don't want to be."

"I'm sorry, I really love you and I still do" he said

"Oh, really now you say you love me? What's next that you thought of me the whole time you were having sex with my best friend?" I bellowed

"I'm really sorry" he said

"you don't know how much you hurt me- I say- and there's nothing more that I want to do except forget about everything and hug you but I can't do it anymore, I can't be a fool anymore" I tell him then walk away but I stopped and asked what I really wanted to know

"Was it worth it? Was she worth us?" I didn't wait for his answer I just smiled a weak smile and bolted out the door and I went home instantly

I went to my room and climbed our roof then I let my tears flow again. I cried for two hours straight thinking what if, what if I didn't walk in on them? What if I just forgave him? What will happen then? But I knew that thinking about this wouldn't help I decided that I would just let myself heal and I would forget him and her as much as I possibly could with this resolve I went to my room and saw Alex waiting for me.

"You okay?" he asked me

"Yeah, I'm okay except for the fact that I confronted my ex today and I had to remember what actually happened and Oh! My mom is supposedly dying but other than that? Yeah I'm okay"

I saw him roll his eyes

"Alex, can you please just quit beating around the bush and tell me what you came here to tell me?" I say feeling exhausted

"Okay, will you go with us to Massachusetts?" he said

I wanted to go but how? I was dumbfounded

"huh?" was all I could reply

"Look, mom is going to be moved on Cambridge and dad is going to be moved to the hospital there too. My university is near and we already found a house also you have a ready school all that's left is your decision." He explained

I raised an eyebrow "Where am I going to study?" I asked out of sheer curiosity

"Well we figured that the perfect school for you is BB&N or Buckingham Browne & Nichols" he shrugged

"You've really thought about this? Haven't you?" I asked

"Well, yes. Look at it like this your life here sucks now and you could stay here until the end of your freshman year or you could start again there." He said carelessly

"Sure, who am I to ruin the plan of the almighty Alex" I say with sarcasm that was practically dripping from my mouth.

This is the perfect opportunity to start again, I thought maybe I could have many friends, maybe I could actually forget everything that happened, maybe I could actually piece my heart back together and maybe just maybe I would see the world like I used to but I know that I was just saying these things to at least try and fix my broken spirit.

Everything was already prepared, as usual Alex was thinking one or three steps ahead, he was always thinking for everyone, every consequence and every decision. I could tell that after my parents he was the most responsible of us even though he wasn't actually the eldest, that would be Austin, he was actually the 2nd eldest but that was just to be expected because since he was around 13 he was given the responsibilities that was supposed to be given to Austin unfortunately Austin doesn't hold responsibilities too much we learned that when I was only 8 years old and he was 15 and I almost jumped off a bridge because he told me that the river had magical powers and left me to flirt with a random girl. So, yeah you could actually get the picture. Sometimes I actually think that Alex was some kind of superman because at an early age he could invent things that 15 years old boys wouldn't even know how to operate and now? He's studying psychology to know how the human brain functions and he told us that after he studies that he would make a cure for the alzheimer's disease and sometimes I don't even know the things that he babbles about.

One time when he was sleep talking he was saying something about neutrons and protons being combined things like that and that's when he's asleep so you could say that he was a genius and we love him for it so we weren't surprised when he was ready for the move and our flight was already reserved also we were flying first class. I was half excited and half nervous about our new life and that's the emotion I was feeling when I was drifting to sleep while I saw our former town transforming as little as an ant.