04 // Pain Too

For hours she sat on the floor with a glass of whiskey in hand, but for some reason she could not bring herself to swallow the strong beverage.

She could not believe the last few hours happened, that she had the confrontation she had been dreading for years.

It left her with so much pain, anger, and hatred. The truth did not set her free, it chained her to every exchange that happened last night, and it brought back the past like a wave on the shore, making it harder to breathe without thinking about it.

For hours she hesitated whether or not she should call Blair. She was not sure whether she wanted to be in complete silence or speak to somebody about her encounter with Logan Parker. She felt lost, exposed, neglected, and abandoned. She felt naked.

She felt as though every time she stepped outside, everyone would notice, everyone would see that she was a rape victim. Her hard work would no longer count, her success would not come to her rescue, and her achievements would be tainted.

She realised that she no longer had a name, she was only a part of statistics, she was just a number in the list of unresolved cases in the world, she was a victim of an injustice not only from the man who violated her, but from the law in South Africa as well.

She knew very well the privilege of having money when it came to the justice system, money could buy anything, including freedom, rendering victims of injustices liars and opportunists. She knew how to get away with murder, did that make her any less of a victim? Perhaps less of a woman? Her head was aching from all the thinking, she had to stop feeling sorry for herself, it was no use.

She needed a distraction, and this house was the perfect distraction. She never thought she would come back here, especially after everything that had gone down, the worst being Jorge's shooting.

The house was still a mess, the helper and not been there in a long time.

She got a bucket and a mop from the storage room and started cleaning from upstairs until eventually she reached the front door where Jorge's dried blood still stained the carpet and wall. That was a mess she still needed to deal with, she had to clean up not only the mess on the floor or the wall, but take care of the whole thing and find her brother's killers and save his life. She did not want any more bloodshed, not when it came to the people she cared about.

She disposed of the water she was using to clean upstairs and then got a smaller bucket in which she poured every cleaning detergent she could find in the house. She kneeled down in front of the door and scrubbed the floor until there was no blood stain left. The cleaning detergents managed to get rid of the copper smell of the blood, but the condition in which they left the carpet was unsettling, the floorboard that was once brown was now white in colour, it was haunting like the aftermath of a nightmare, horrifying.

She threw herself on the floor and leaned against the wall where there was once blood stains, her clothes; the white pants and blouse were covered in blood.

A knock came from the door when she least expected it, but she did not bother answering, the door was not locked, the person would either get tired of knocking and leave or decide to let themselves in. She did not care, she did not even worry herself, if her brother's murderers were back then perhaps it would be better if they put an end to her, she did not want to die but it was the better option considerable.

The door creaked open, and she did not bother to look up, an immense amount of light flooded the house when the person opened the door. She saw a shadow of a man and she could recognise that scent anywhere, it made her heart soar but she felt as if the moment she allowed herself to be vulnerable, she would crack. She did not want to crack, not in his presence anyway. The last time she opened up to him, he ran off, leaving her to suffer alone in her demise.

Cameron closed the door and sat down on the floor next to her, but neither of them said a word.

They were sitting so close to each other, their bodies almost touching, and yet, it felt like there was this huge gap between them, they were like strangers, neither of them knew where to begin.

MJ wondered what dragged him out here so late in the night, but she had her guesses. "Did Blair send you out here to check up on me or did you come at your own free will?" She asked.

"She was worried about you," he said.

MJ snickered. "Of course."

"I am worried about you too." She gulped, her chest burning with undefined emotions. "Jackson tells me that you went to see Logan." Her body went rigid, and that only fueled his suspicions. "MJ, I am trying not to think of the worst but my gut tells me that something happened. I'm even scared to ask."

She took in a shaky breath and gulped, shutting her eyes. "I lost control and let my emotions take over," the words slipped out of her mouth before she could stop herself. There it was, the vulnerability she allowed herself to feel when he was around. "I wish I could turn back the hands of time, that the last 24 hours did not happen. I feel so dirty... naked, like I bore my soul to him."

She waited for the pity and blame, but it never came. "How much does he know?" Cameron asked instead.

She shook her head. "Enough." Not enough, she thought.

"Are you scared that he might start looking at you differently?"

MJ frowned and tilted her head so that she was facing him. She had not done this to redeem herself, she wanted them both to hurt, and now she regretted it. "I did not go to Logan with the intention to come clean, it was an impulsive act.. I shouldn't have done it!"

As expected, Cameron was still not aware of the implications of her actions. "What could be so bad about it? I mean, at least it's out of the way now."

"Cameron, you just don't get it, do you?" She got up from the floor, and he followed her actions.

"MJ, what you did takes a lot of courage. You've been harbouring this heavy burden on your shoulders for years."

"Exactly!" She yelled, throwing her hands in the air. "And for a good reason. Cameron, once secrets start piling out, there's no stopping them! What do you think is going to happen the next time Logan sees me? He's going to want to know who did it, what do I say then? Do you know what that means?" Cameron's face paled as his head started working. "Exactly! Just get the hell out of here, Cameron, you can tell Blair that I'm better than ever." She turned around and ran up the stairs.

She got to her room and got out of the bloody clothes, and then ran a shower. She heard Cameron's car veer to life, and her heart sank in disappointment. He was never here to stay, he only came because Blair asked him to, otherwise, he did not care. She had to remind herself that she had no one in this world, she was all alone and she had to fight for her survival.

She stepped into the shower and relaxed as soon as the water hit her body. She reminded herself that she was stronger than this, she would overcome whatever obstacles life set in her way.

Related chapters

Latest chapter Protection Status