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Olivia straightened her back, attempting to wipe her eyes with her hand, smudging Melanie’s blood all over her face. “I need to get her to the hospital. She’s been stabbed, Alex, and it’s all because of me!” she cried out. She tried resuscitating her friend in a final act of desperation.
“Olivia, please,” he begged her as he crouched down next to her. Placing his fingers against Melanie’s neck, he shook his head dejectedly when there was no pulse to be found. “She’s gone, love. I’m so sorry.”
“NOOO!!!!” Olivia cried out, hugging Melanie in her arms, holding her tight, desperate for her to wake up and everything to be a bad dream. She clutched her friend as EMTs and police officers swarmed the location.
“Olivia, please, let go of her. She’s in a better place,” he pleaded with her, unable to hide his own tears. That very well could have been her lying there.
Alexander was right. She needed to be strong for her friend. Taking a deep breath, she stood up, leaving Melanie’s body on the ground.
She was in a complete daze as she watched the paramedics check her non-existent vitals. She sank to the ground as crime scene technicians roped off the area, taking photos. She wanted to kill Lucas when she saw Carol’s husband, David, place him in handcuffs and haul him off to the police station. She howled when she saw the medical examiner zip up Melanie’s body bag.
“Olivia…” Alexander’s voice brought her back as she watched the coroner’s van drive off with her friend.
She immediately felt sick to her stomach just looking at him. “I’m done, Alex. I can’t live this way anymore.” She raised herself off the ground and started to walk away, not caring that she was covered in blood.
“My sister told me about the letter left at Kiera’s house!”
Olivia stopped in her tracks, spinning around, her eyes full of venom. “So you’re here to tell me to not do anything stupid, am I right? Well, you’re in luck because I have no idea what those fuckers are even after! Not even one clue!” She looked at him, his expression grim. “But you do, don’t you?”
He remained silent as Olivia stalked over to him, standing a mere breath away. “You need to tell me everything you know, Alex. NOW! I’m done being left in the dark and letting you make all the decisions for me. I’m an adult! I need to make my own decisions! There’s something going on, and these people are targeting my friends!”
“It’s not about that, Olivia! I wanted to tell you everything, but you said you didn’t want to talk about any of that. And now I can’t, not after seeing that letter. Your life is in danger!”
She threw her head back, laughing sarcastically. “Ya’ think?”
“No. You don’t understand,” he said, pleading with her. “If I tell you and you figure it all out, they’ll kill you. As long as you remain ignorant of what they’re after, you can’t be touched. They’re desperate for it and you’re the only one who can help them. It’s the only thing keeping you alive.”
“But my friends, Alex!” she cried out, thinking about two of her closest friends and what they had to endure all because of her. “They’re going after my friends.” She glared at him. “They killed Mel. She’s gone, and I was thinking that it’s all my fault.” She took a deep breath before continuing, “But it’s not, Alexander. This is all your fault. I hope you can sleep well tonight with Melanie’s blood on your hands!” She turned to walk away.
“I’m sorry, Olivia. I just can’t risk losing you again. You’ve got to understand,” he begged, running to catch up to her, desperate for her to grasp where he was coming from.
Olivia paused, looking deep into his eyes. “You can’t risk losing me?” she hissed, her chin quivering. “Well, Alex, you just did.” She pushed past him, bolting in the direction of the hospital.
“Olivia! PLEASE!!!” he shouted, watching as she ran away from him…again.
OLIVIA RAN BACK TO the hospital, ignoring Alexander as he followed her. She was hysterical and needed her friends. They still had no idea what had happened to Melanie and she didn’t know if she was strong enough to tell them. Guilt overwhelmed her when she noticed Tyler slumped in the corner of the waiting room, sobbing. Mo saw her and quickly ran over to her, wrapping his arms around her, not caring that she was covered in blood.
She bawled uncontrollably into his chest.
“It’s okay, baby girl. Let it all out.” He soothed her tears, rubbing her back.
Alexander looked down at Olivia in Mo’s arms and felt overwhelming remorse for what had happened. Could he really have prevented it? At what cost?
Once Olivia’s tears began to subside a bit, Mo pulled back, looking down at her tear-stained face. “Does Bridget know?”
Olivia shook her head. “I haven’t called anyone yet. I know David was going to be notifying her parents, but no one knows yet…except for poor Tyler over there.” She looked up and saw Alexander hovering just a few feet away, his eyes sad and pleading.
She turned toward him, glaring. “Please leave,” she demanded.
Mo gave her a questioning look.
“I can’t stand to look at you right now, Alex,” she hissed. “I need my friends. Not you.” She turned to walk away, wanting to be alone.
Alexander reached out and grabbed her arm. “Please. Olivia, love…”
Mo immediately shot his arm out, grabbing Alexander’s. “Let her go.” He glared at him and he begrudgingly released his hold on Olivia.
She darted down the hallway, hiding herself in the closest bathroom. Rushing to the sinks, she scrubbed at her skin in a feeble attempt to remove Melanie’s dried blood from her body. Screaming in frustration, she collapsed on the floor. She buried her head in her lap, her tears soaking her blood-stained jeans as she thought how everything had taken such a horrible turn in the past few days.
“Olivia? Are you in there?” a gentle voice called out as her cries began to subside a short while later.
She raised her head out of her lap and wiped her eyes, pulling back the door to the bathroom and staring into Bridget’s watery eyes. “I’m so sorry, Bridge.” She wrapped her arms around her friend, clutching on to her.