Chapter Seventeen

There was something about hospitals that made Clara uneasy. The whole place smelled like rubbing alcohol and hand sanitizers. There were old people in wheelchairs attached to IV tubes on the side, there were nurses running up and down the clean shiny floors and there were families either crying that they've lost a member or gleaming with joy because they've gained a new member. There was a strange smell of death that Clara inhaled. She shivered at the thoughts of needles, blood and injured people. God, she hated this place.

She sat on a plastic chair in the waiting room along with Katy and Nate. Nate's eyebrows were furrowed as he focused on the carpeted floor. Just like Clara, he had several thoughts swirling his head. Katy, on the other hand was looking out the window. She had her chin resting on her palm and her lips were pursed. Everybody was worried about Talon. It's not something they had expected from him. Hell, Clara never knew that there might be a chance that he might be...sick. Katy had spent numerous time with him, so she had her suspicions. But, why didn't she say anything?

Clara focused her attention towards the worried blonde. She can sense that she was also extremely worried because of the way that she was biting her finger nails and breathing heavily.

"Hey Katy," Clara said softly. Katy's eyes slowly moved towards her direction.

"What?" She said bitterly.

"Since you and Talon are, um, well, close, what else have you noticed about him?" Clara asked playing with her thumbs. It took a while for Katy to answer back. Her eyes were still fixated at the view outside the window. Before she answered, she bit her lip hard and closed her eyes tight. She took a deep breath and dropped her gaze down to her fingers that rested on her thighs.

"Talon hasn't always been honest with me, which is why it's hard for me to trust him. Ever since that summer, when he approached me, I was skeptical because it wasn't like him to, you know, talk to me, Katy Escott, the girl you both hate with a passion. I know something was definitely up. For some reason, he actually grew to like me, however, there was something that's been holding him back. But that summer...something had definitely happened that changed a lot..."

•••

Katy Escott had everybody over for a small pool party in her big mansion. Why not take the advantage of having such a big house by bringing in friends over for a little fun? Her parents had left her older sister, Tara, in charge because they were on a 'couples retreat' in Bora Bora with her aunts and uncles. Her sister Tara was never home because of work, friends and parties, so Katy had the house all to herself. That also meant she had access to everything which includes a little bit of alcohol.

Everyone who she thought was relevant to her eyes was there. Her two best friends, the five hottest guys in the school, jocks and cheerleaders. Those who were definitely rich, popular and good looking was invited. Why would she contaminate the pool with people other than her own social class?

The only person that was truly missing was Talon Gray. The guy that Katy had eyes on for as long as she can remember. His brown locks and his matching chocolate brown eyes just made her swoon. He was perfect as well - he was a jock and he was freaking loaded. The only thing that she cannot understand is why he hangs out with that girl...Clara Shale. Now, she's not at all poor. She doesn't wear rags at all. Clara's parents are interior designers and she lives in a fairly nice house (not as nice as hers though). As much as Katy hates to admit this, she doesn't think that Clara is at all ugly.

But there was seriously something about Clara Shale that Katy hates. Clara had a stupid and perfect life with her success in dance and her close relationship with Talon Gray. She had seen them laughing among one another which made them seem genuinely happy.

There was this sudden jealousy and hate that started to develop in her chest. When she had seen her so happy, she couldn't wait to get her hands on Talon and crush Clara's perfect life. Once she has Talon on her leash, it wouldn't be so hard ruining Clara's life.

Getting Talon to side with her was not hard at all. In fact, she didn't have to do anything whatsoever.

Talon Gray himself attended her mini pool party filled with drunk teenagers splashing each other and some that may possibly be making out.

Katy was sitting on a white plastic pool chair sitting and laughing with her best friends as she took sips from her red cup. The sips she had from the cup eventually got her head to spin around and laugh even more. Someone snatched her cup and chugged it down in front of her. Her vision wasn't so great after having cups and cups of alcohol. This was probably her fourth cup.

"Hey! That was mine you idiot!" She slurred. When Katy got up, she swayed a bit, but someone got a hold of her. She looked up and squinted to see who the guy was. Katy smirked.

"Well if it isn't Talon...how are you doing on this fine summer evening?" She giggled.

"Can I speak to you alone?" He said lowly.

"Mhm, of course you can, lead the way!" Katy said giggling. Her arms found her way around Talon's neck. He sighed heavily and decided to carry her bridal style.

"I like this a lot Talon." She said whispering in his ear.

He brought them to a place in the house where there weren't any people. Talon placed her on the couch and her head lazily swayed back and forth.

"So what's up?" She slurred.

He sat beside her and sighed.

"Be my girlfriend." He said. Her head shot up (which wasn't such a good idea) and looked at Talon square in the face.

A corner of his lips twitched.

"That sobered you up pretty quick." He said smiling. Katy scowled at him and slapped his shoulder.

"That was not funny, Gray!" She scrunched her face and crossed her arms.

"I'm actually serious, Katy. I realized that I want you." He wasn't looking at her so she grabbed a hold of his chin and made him look at her.

"You're not just saying this are you? You're being serious or is this some sort of joke? You can't fuck around my feelings Talon! I won't-"

He interrupted her by grabbing her waist and pushing her towards him so he can kiss her. It wasn't a long one, but it sure got Katy hooked because once he pulled back, she tried getting some more. But he moved his head backwards which caused her to pout.

"I'm not joking around Katy. I want to be with you. I don't want to be around her anymore." The moment he said that last sentence, his eyes shifted to the left. Katy searched his eyes to see if he was lying or not. She couldn't really suspect anything because she wasn't necessarily in the best state to judge.

"I thought you and Clara, I-I thought..." Katy trailed off.

"Just don't ever mention...her again. Please, I just don't wanna be around someone like her. I want to be with you okay?" Talon looked at her straight in the eye until he kissed her again, but this time it was hot and rough. He spat out "her" as if it was some sort of poisonous substance.

•••

"After that summer, I've noticed a change about him. He was so easy to manipulate and toy with - at the time I didn't care because I felt like I won...against you. Anyways, I've noticed he's been having these headaches and sometimes his vision would get blurry. He would stop in the middle of something and take hold of his head. Sometimes after our dinner dates, he would get all nauseous and I'd blame it on the restaurant food,"

Clara noticed streaks of tears running down her face. Katy immediately collapsed her head towards her palms and started to sob.

"God! Why the hell haven't I noticed it? They were all symptoms o-of... something! I'm not exactly sure what, but I know for fact that Talon is hiding something from us! I'm such a bitch! I've focused his and my life to ruining yours that I haven't even given a second look at his health! This is all my fucking fault! God, I hate myself so much!" She cried and started to sob.

Clara sat on the chair beside her and started to pat her back.

"Katy, I think you need some fresh air. Don't blame yourself for anything. Go. Get some coffee or tea or something. The fastest you can leave this depressing place, the faster you can relax."

The blonde got up and fixed her shirt and wiped away all of her tears. She grabbed her pursed that was resting on the chair and began to walk away sniffing.

She stopped to turn to Clara.

"I'm so, so sorry Clara Shale." She whispered.


A/N: Hello my fellow readers! I know, I know it's been months since I have last updated. I am more active on Wattpad, so if you'd like faster updates, go visit my Wattpad I have the link on my profile page! Just a huge thanks to EVERYONE reading I truly appreciate each and one of you reading and commenting my story. You guys are the reason (hehe reason..) why I have continued to write this story. I have been wanting to trash this story sooo many times, but it's not time for Clara, Talon and Nate to go just yet ;)

THANK YOU! 3

MAY x