View Full Version : Color Guard

March 8th, 2015, 03:09 PM
This is part one of something I'm working on right now. So yeah, any constructive criticism would nice:

Part One

Emily sighed internally as she once again was cut off mid-sentence. Any time a phone call, text message, or kik was sent to his phone, Jake would jump to answer it, in case it was Alex. In the first few weeks of the relationship, everyone thought it was cute but by now, the novelty had worn off. Eventually, all of Jake’s friends stopped inviting him to things and stopped wanting to spend time with him. Only Emily remained and even she was tempted to stop inviting him over. But they’d been best friends since they were only nine years old and it was habit to talk to Jake about things she couldn’t to anyone else. Everything with him used to be so familiar, funny faces, Reese’s peanut butter ice cream, painting fingernails, Gilmore Girls, and video games. Now, however, Jake never seemed as focused and relaxed around her and hardly paid attention when she spoke. Emily was not one to complain, rock the boat, or do anything to compromise a friendship. But even she was getting fed up.

It may have been different if she knew Alex. But the only knowledge Emily had regarding her best friend’s boyfriend was what she was told. Alex had never shown the slightest indication of interest in getting to know her. Whenever they saw each other, she would smile brightly and wave while he would give a quick, curt nod. He hadn’t said more than 100 words to her in the 6 months that he and Jake had been involved. Her brother, Josh, said that he’d heard Alex goes to the Pit from time to time. Just the idea of being around that place made Emily uneasy. The Pit was where all sorts of undesirables hung around. There’s been three big drug busts just this school year there. One was always hearing about terrible things happening there. Everyone who frequented the Pit had a reputation. Emily was certain that some of it was just talk, but she still felt goosebumps travel up her arms when she thought of it. She was a firm believer that anyone worth talking to would keep a wide berth of that place.

Jake was thumbing through his phone, frowning at the screen clearly not registering any of the words Emily had been pontificating. She was getting very frustrated with him because she thought of all people, he would be the one to be excited for her and the color guard competition she would be traveling to this weekend. But no, the only thing Jake was interested in was Alex, Alex, Alex.
"I have to go," he said abruptly, not even giving an apologetic smile or shrug like usual. He just started heading toward the door.
"Are you serious?" Emily snapped. She was not the type of person to use harsh tones of voice with people, especially not with Jake. But she had had enough.
"It’s important, Em. Alex needs me." He said, nearing the door. Emily let out a soft scream of frustration and grabbed him by the shoulder, intending to force him to look her in the eye. As her hand connected with his shoulder, Jake visibly winced. They both froze. He knew that she knew. The anger left her body all at once and was replaced with fear. Emily blanched and approached Jake again, this time slowly and hesitantly. She lifted up Jake’s shirt and gasped. Horror pumped through her veins like sludge. She felt cold from the sight before her.

Jake’s body was riddled with scratches; bruises in various shades of yellow, green, and purple; there was a long gash across his chest that had scabbed over; they traveled from his hips across his chest, shoulders and all over his back, some of them were very clearly the marks of fingers that dug in too hard. Emily’s jaw couldn’t fall any lower. She took one shaky breath and the words came forth like a cascade.
"Did he do this? Did Alex do this to you? Did he hurt you?"
Jake didn’t respond at first, he couldn’t make eye contact with Emily and instead stared off into space. His hands traced the bruises on his upper arms below where Emily’s hand had touched.

"No more than I wanted him to."