You Know What You Have To Do

THE NEXT DAY
Liz’s point of view

“What time do you finish?” asked Brad. We were sitting in his car because he insisted on driving me to work.
“I don’t know, anywhere from 6 to 10,” I replied. I didn’t want to be in the car with him; in fact, I didn’t even want to be on the same planet with him.
“Call me on my cell and tell me when you’re done, I’ll pick you up,” he said.
“I don’t want you to pick me up,” I replied coldly. “What I want is for you to leave me alone,” I added.
Brad’s features twisted into a cold expression. “Listen Liz, you are going to listen to me and you are going to be the loving girlfriend that you were a month ago,” he threatened.
“No I won’t be, I’ll never be that person again because you cheated on me and I know that you’re a lying bastard!” I exclaimed. Brad then grabbed my arm and yanked me towards him.
“Don’t you dare say that to me or the entire world will find out your little secret,” he said menacingly.
“Why do you want me to be with you?” I asked.
“Because I love you,” he replied simply.
“You don’t love me, if you loved me you wouldn’t have cheated on me in the first place,” I told him.
“Yes I do love you and I’m sure of it,” he said.
“It’s not love, it’s obsession,” I said quietly.
“Are you trying to say that you think that I’m crazy?” asked Brad, his eyes flashing with fury.
“No, I’m not trying to say it, I am saying it,” I retorted. “Brad, you’re nuts!” I exclaimed. He then pulled my arm so hard I cried out.
“Shut up!” he yelled.
“You’re hurting my arm!”
“That’s what you get for insulting me.” A long silence followed. “Well?” asked Brad expectedly.
“Well what?” I asked rubbing my arm and wincing in pain. There was definitely gonna be a bruise there. “If you’re waiting for me to apologize, then you’ll be waiting forever,” I said angrily. “I have to go, and don’t even think about showing up here later today, and don’t wait for me to call, because I’m not going to,” I said and quickly got out of the car and ran inside. I was walking towards the make-up trailer wrapped up in my own thoughts and didn’t notice anyone walking towards me until I collided with him.
“Liz, are you okay?” I looked up and saw Nick’s face full of worry.
“Yeah, I’m fine,” I said getting up.
“Good, now will you please tell me what is going on?” he asked.
“Nick, nothing is going on,” I said sighing.
“I don’t believe you,” he said and meant it.
“Everything is fine, now if you excuse me, I’m late,” I said and hurried over to make-up.

Nick’s point of view

I watched Liz duck into the make-up trailer and started to worry about her. Well actually, I was worried about her from the previous day, but then the feeling grew. There was definitely something wrong with her and Brad, there was no way that she could’ve gotten back together with him after what he had done, unless…I didn’t want to finish that thought. I just knew that I had to get to the bottom of whatever it was that was going on, and fast, before things got worse.

THAT EVENING

“Bri, I don’t know what to do, she won’t talk to me!” I exclaimed out of frustration and switched my phone to my other hand.
“Nick, give her a little time to come around,” said Brian on the other end. He and the rest of the guys had gone back to Florida the day before and I was stuck alone with trying to figure out what was going on with Liz.
“That’s just it, I have a feeling that time is something that I don’t have,” I said.
“What do you mean?” asked Brian and there was a definite note of concern and worry in his voice, after all, Liz was like a sister to him.
“I don’t know, I just know that there’s something that Brad has on her,” I replied.
“Has on her? You think he’s blackmailing her into being with him?” asked Brian. I could hear by his voice that he thought it was a stretch.
“I don’t know,” I said sighing.
“You keep saying that Nick,” said Brian softly. “Why don’t you go to her and get her to tell you?” he suggested.
“But that’s just it, I can’t!” I exclaimed. “Every time I try to talk to her, she runs away from me,” I told him. “Are you coming to New York any time soon?” I asked.
“Maybe,” replied Brian thoughtfully. “Let me check on something right now and I’ll get back to you in an hour or so,” he said.
“Okay, catch you later then,” I said.
“Bye,” said Brian and hung up. I turned off my cell phone and put it down on the coffee table in front of me. I looked around my house; it seemed so empty and quiet.
An hour and a half later my cell phone rang and I grabbed it on the first ring. “Hello?” I said hoping that it was Brian. It was.
“Hey it’s me,” he said.
“So?” I asked.
“Okay, well, I can’t come out there right now, but I called the other guys, and Kev said that he would be more than happy to help,” replied Brian.
I sighed with relief. “Great, when can he be here?” I asked.
“He’s on his way as we speak,” said Brian. “His plane will land in New York in about two hours,” he added.
“Okay, I’ll pick him up at the airport, he can stay at my house, it’s basically empty anyway,” I said. “Maybe he can get through to Liz,” I added wistfully.
“I hope so Nick, cause I was thinking about what you said earlier, and I also think that time is not something we can count on,” responded Brian.
“Bri, what if he hurt her?” I asked, my voice breaking slightly.
“He better not have,” said Brian and I could hear anger in his voice. “Otherwise, he will have to deal with all five of us,” he added.
“I hope Kev gets here soon,” I commented.
“He will, just hang on till then,” promised Brian.
“I’ll try,” I said. We spoke for another few minutes and then hung up. I looked at my watch, 8 o’clock. I had to leave for the airport around 9:30 in order to make it there in time for Kevin’s arrival. I tried calling Liz, but she didn’t pick up her phone. I hung up frustratingly. What was I supposed to do? How could I help her when she wouldn’t tell me what was wrong?

THE NEXT DAY
Liz’s point of view

I woke up early on Saturday morning. It was only 6:30. I lay in my bed trying to figure out what I was supposed to do to stay away from Brad that day. Since I didn’t have to work, I knew I had to keep myself busy. Unfortunately, I didn’t know how to do that. After lying in bed for an hour and coming up with nothing, I went downstairs to the kitchen to get a glass of water. I was sitting at the counter and drinking it when I heard Lana come downstairs.
“Hey, why are you up so early?” she asked yawning.
“Couldn’t sleep,” I replied shrugging. “What about you?” I asked.
“Remember? Some of us have jobs,” said Lana grinning. “Ones that unfortunately, don’t include being around great gorgeous guys and acting,” she added laughing.
I managed to grin. “Oh right, I forgot that you have to work today,” I said sheepishly.
“It’s okay, I know you’ve had your hands full,” she said understandingly. “Now will you please tell me what in the world possessed you to get back together with Brad?” she exclaimed.
I was surprised at the outburst. “He apologized,” I said simply. Yeah, I kept repeating the lie over and over again, no wonder no one was falling for it, it was totally lame.
“Liz, there’s no excuse for what he did,” said Lana sternly. “You should’ve never accepted his apology,” she added.
‘I wish it were that simple,’ I thought. “He asked for a second chance, and since you know what happened with Nick, I felt like I should give him that chance,” I said out loud.
“No,” said Lana shaking her head. “There’s something going on here that you’re not telling me,” she stated.
“There’s nothing going on,” I said, trying to believe it myself, it didn’t work.
“Yes there is, I just don’t know what it is…yet,” said Lana.
“There’s nothing to know,” I protested.
“Yes there is,” repeated Lana. “I’m going to get ready for work, but I will talk to you about this when I get home this evening,” she promised and headed up the stairs to her room.

THAT AFTERNOON

I was sitting and trying to read a book when the doorbell rang. I considered not answering because I thought that it might be Brad. So far that day, I had successfully avoided his phone calls and it seemed like he gave up for the time being. I walked over to the door and looked into the peephole. I was relieved to see Kevin on the doorstep and not Brad.
“Hey,” I said opening the door. “This is a pleasant surprise,” I added putting a smile on my face and letting him in.
“Yeah, well, I was in the neighborhood,” said Kevin grinning. We went to the living room and sat down. Kevin’s expression then turned serious. “So, what’s up?” he asked.
“Nothing,” I replied shrugging.
“Somehow, I doubt that,” said Kevin.
“Let me guess, Nick wants to know what’s going on, so since I won’t talk to him, he had to get one of you guys to come here and talk to me,” I guessed. By the expression on Kevin’s face, I knew I was right.
“So what if that’s it?” he asked. “Can you blame him for being worried?”
“But nothing is going on!” I insisted.
“Liz, I’m not Nick, talk to me,” urged Kevin.
I was about to say something but the doorbell rang once again. ‘Probably Nick,’ I thought as I went to open the door. It wasn’t Nick; it was Brad.
“Hi,” he said grinning.
“What do you want?” I asked coldly.
“Just stopped by to see if you were home since you weren’t answering your phone,” said Brad and ducked under my arm that was holding the door open.
“If I wasn’t answering the phone, that was a big hint that I’m avoiding you,” I informed him.
“Why would you want to avoid your boyfriend?” asked Brad and then his face expression turned angry when he saw Kevin sitting on the couch. “Who’s he?” he asked. Brad had never met any of the guys except for Nick.
“He’s my friend,” I replied. “Kevin, this is Brad, Brad, this is Kevin,” I said introducing him. I saw Kevin’s jaw clench as I said Brad’s name.
“What is he doing here?” asked Brad.
“Sitting,” I snapped.
“Talking,” added Kevin.
“There’s nothing to talk about,” said Brad angrily.
“Funny, Liz was just telling me the same thing,” said Kevin.
“Good, so we understand each other then,” stated Brad.
“No we don’t,” I said. “Brad, I want you out of here,” I told him.
“I’m not leaving,” he said firmly.
“It’s my house, and I want you out of here,” I repeated, angrier this time.
“No,” refused Brad.
“Leave now!” I yelled. I saw Brad’s eyes flash with anger, much like they did the day before.
“Didn’t I tell you never to yell at me?” he hissed and then grabbed my arm. The same arm that he had grabbed the previous day.
“Ow!” I cried out as Brad’s hand closed around the bruise that was already on my arm. At that moment Kevin jumped up from the couch and positioned himself between Brad and me.
“I believe she said that she wants you to leave,” said Kevin. I could see that he was trying to control his anger.
“It’s none of your business,” said Brad trying to get past Kevin to me. Kevin pushed him back lightly.
“Don’t you dare come near her,” he warned.
“You’re gonna stop me?” asked Brad smirking.
“Yeah I am,” stated Kevin. Brad obviously missed the fact that Kevin was about four inches taller and was stronger, because he then pushed Kevin. It was then that Kevin’s patience snapped. He grabbed Brad by the shoulders and quickly shoved him out the door. “And stay out!” he yelled right before he slammed the door shut. “Are you okay?” he asked turning to me.
I nodded. “Thanks,” I said gratefully.
“You’re welcome,” said Kevin, his voice returning to its calm self. “Now will you please tell me what’s going on?” he asked.
I sighed. “Okay, but you have to promise never to tell anyone,” I said, and I was dead serious.
“Okay,” said Kevin nodding. I then told him exactly what it was that Brad had been using against me.
“And that’s basically it,” I finished.
“Wow, that’s quite a story,” commented Kevin.
“Yeah, I know,” I said sadly. It was still hard to talk about it.
“Liz, I’m going to do everything I can to help you,” said Kevin placing his hand on my arm. I winced. “Oh, I’m so sorry!” he exclaimed quickly moving his hand.
“No problem,” I said gently rubbing my arm.
Kevin looked at my bruise. “He did that to you didn’t he?” he asked.
“Yeah, yesterday,” I admitted.
“I promise you that he will never touch you again,” said Kevin with the utmost sincerity. “But you know what you have to do right?” he asked.
“Yeah, I know, I have to tell Nick,” I said nodding.
“You do,” confirmed Kevin.
“But how do I tell him something like this?” I asked.
“Just tell him, you know that Nick will listen,” he replied.
“I know that he will listen, but how will he react?” I questioned.
“That I don’t know,” said Kevin shaking his head. “You’ll know as soon as you tell him,” he added.
I nodded thoughtfully and tried to figure out how I was supposed to tell Nick the biggest secret of my life.


chapter 7 chapter 9