Olivia tossed in her bed again. The images were there, taunting her and coming back to her. She woke up again, sweaty and sick. Her stomach rolled and she felt like she was going to throw up.
How could she have been so stupid? She had been drunk that night. She had never been so drunk, not even with Lucas. Derek had been super drunk, she remembered that much. He could barely speak, let alone walk. She was also really positive that there was no way he would have taken advantage of her. Derek was a lot of things; rapist wasn’t one them.
The more she kept having random visions, the more guilt ate at her. Olivia hadn’t completely remembered that night. She did remember dragging Derek away to get him into bed. She also remember pulling his shoes and pants off because he complained about wearing pants in bed.
Damn, but the memories were too important. They came in flashes, and mostly at night when she could barely sleep. She sat on the bed and rubbed her eyes. She was exhausted. No, scratch that, she passed exhaustion days ago.
“What the fuck happened that night?”
She massaged her temple. She willed the memories to really paint the picture. But nothing came. Just her and him, in bed. Did she like it? She knew she liked sex with Lucas, but what about Derek? Did she beg for him to stop or to continue? Did he? He was pretty far gone when she dragged him into that room.
Did she take advantage of him? Olivia shook her head. She wouldn’t do that. Would she?
There was a knock at the door, before it opened. “Olivia, sweetie? You okay?”
“Yeah. Fine, Mom.” She was definitely not okay.
Mom walked in and frowned. “Can’t sleep again?”
Olivia shook her head. “Not really.”
“Nervous about tomorrow?” Mom beamed and sat next to her. “I cannot believe my baby is graduating high school. Not to mention she’s the top of her class. Do you know how proud I am of you?”
Olivia grinned at her Mom, though it felt farce. What if her Mom or Dad found out how not-so-great of a daughter they had? Even Bronte would be disappointed in her, and that was not something she wanted to hear from him. She liked her step-dad. He was cool. He was a video game developer, which made him the biggest geek she knew—which was awesome.
“You sure you’re okay?”
She wasn’t going to tell anyone about Derek and her, or that night. And since she didn’t even know what truly happen, she was going to keep it a secret from everyone. If only her memories wouldn’t taunt her like they had been doing the last few weeks.
Mom kissed her forehead. “Okay. Get some rest, pumpkin. You have a big day tomorrow.”
“Yeah. Big Day.”
Olivia spotted Derek and his two friends. She remembered when it had been just the four of them against the world. She still didn’t remember exactly when they all stopped being friends, but she knew a big reason was because she thought she was in love with Lucas Munch.
She learned that lesson the hard way. Fucking cheating bastard.
She had so much regret. How could she have been such a bitch to them? If only she had a do-over. She’d change so much. But she couldn’t fix the past. Nor could she fix her relationship with any of them. Brandt would never forgive her for the way she bullied him and hurt him. Kody wouldn’t either just because of her treatment to Brandt. Derek…well, that was still something she wasn’t quite sure how to handle. Why did they fuck up so badly at the party? They were actually talking and becoming friends again. So much for that friendship. No matter what, that night ruined any chance of them ever being friends.
Olivia then spotted her father. He and Uncle Eli were chatting away like always. They were what friendship goals were in Olivia’s eyes. They had been friends long before Olivia was born, and here they were still acting like the same goofballs they’ve always been. What she really liked was that no matter how much Derek and her fought or hated on each other, they never took sides. They just listened, and shrugged it off.
She snuck up on her father and poked him in the back. “Hey, don’t I get a hug?”
Dad turned and practically lifted her off the ground in a big hug. “Olivia!”
“Oh my God, Dad. Put me down!” She couldn’t help but laugh. “So embarrassing.”
Uncle Elijah chuckled. “It’s what us dads do, Olivia. And might I say, congratulations. Your old man hasn’t stopped boasting about his top of the class, ivy league daughter. You ready for Simdale?”
“I am, and thanks.”
She spotted Derek coming over toward them. “Dad, Mom’s looking for you.”
“Yup. Okay.” He turned back to Olivia, and shook her hand before pulling her into a hug. “Good luck, and congrats again, kiddo.”
Derek waved her off after Uncle Eli walked passed him. She wanted to say something, but she couldn’t. Not here. Not now. Not with their parents around.
The ceremony went by in a whirlwind. Olivia gave her speech on the future, and where everyone should go from there. She hoped she sounded hopeful and inspirational, even though she wasn’t feeling it. Guilt, shame, regret; those were the feelings that kept her from enjoying this moment. She was Valedictorian, this should be the greatest moment in her life so far, but it wasn’t.
As she spoke her eyes drifted to Derek and his friends. She hoped above all in her class that those three will have a better life and a better future than she or her friends gave them in school. As Olivia finished her speech, she decided she was going to talk to Derek, and make sure he knew that it wasn’t his fault. That neither were at fault for that night. He deserved that much from her.
After the ceremony she went to search out Derek, and finally found him along with Kody and Brandt heading toward the school, rather than heading toward the parking lot like everyone else seemed to be. Derek looked as if something was wrong, and the other two were awfully close talking to him.
“Derek?” she called out.
All three turned, and she was sure Derek mumbled something or swore—she wasn’t sure which. “What?”
“C-can we talk?” She bit her lip. She hoped he’d hear her out.
“Haven’t you destroyed him enough?” Brandt spat.
Shit. Of course Derek would have told his friends what they did, and the fact she accused him of raping her.
He took a moment to speak with the twins, before heading over to Olivia. “What do you want, Olivia? You gonna tell me you’ve gone to the cops or something?”
She shook her head. “No. I…” she took a deep breath. “I don’t think you…well, you didn’t rape me.”
It was as if his entire demeanor change. As if something was weighing him down lifted. “You sure? I mean…I still don’t know what the hell happened that night. Fuck, I don’t even remember heading into that room or seeing you.”
“I took you to that room, I remember that much. You could barely stand.”
“Then how the fuck did we even fuck?”
Olivia shrugged. “We were naked in the morning.”
“True, but that still doesn’t mean…does it?” He scrubbed his face. “Fuck, but I really wish I could remember.”
So did she. Olivia squeezed his arm. “Let’s just say we both screwed up, and that if something happened, then it wasn’t either of our faults, okay? Neither of us were in the right state of mind.”
“Yeah.” She noticed his friends were waiting still behind him a ways. “Look, your friends are waiting. Why don’t we just part ways, and shake hands. Maybe, someday, our paths will run into each other again.”
He laughed. “Our dads work together, and you don’t think we’ll ever see each other?”
“Maybe. I’m heading off to college in the summer, and most of the time I’m with my mom and step-dad. But if we do, let’s just promise to be civil?”
“And we never discuss that night. Not ever.”
“Good luck, Derek.”
“Yeah, you too.”