- His hearing
Have you ever felt like you’re just living through the motions? Like nothing and no one around you
is real? I googled it. G****e said it was a form of dissociating. It happens especially with adults who had childhood traumas. It’s a coping mechanism where the person separates him or herself from what’s hurting or causing them stress.
After I read that, I realized that maybe Letty was right. Maybe I did need help. Professional help. Maybe I should start seeing a therapist. I know I have issues. Deep seated traumas that I haven’t been able to work through.
Sighing, I stand up and start pacing the room. My mind was racing and no matter what, I couldn’t settle down. I’ve pushed everyone away since that time when everyone was at my house. I’ve refused to take calls or talk to anyone.
I just wanted to be left alone. To process everything on my own. Sometimes I feel the weight of everything falling on me and it’s just hard. It becomes too much to handle some times and I’m left feeling hollow and empty inside.
My phones rings, cutting through the silent space. I check the caller Id, it was Brian calling. I know why. Today is Ethan’s trial and he wanted me to come and testify against him. Just like I couldn’t press charges, I also couldn’t testify. (3)
I’m not condoning what Ethan did. He did some pretty messed up things, but I just can’t bring myself to put a nail on his coffin. Every time I’ve thought about going ahead and pressing charges or testifying, every good moment we’ve shared comes to my mind and I immediately withdraw from the thoughts.
Ethan, the Ethan I knew, was good to me. He made me feel good, and not just sexually. He brought out a side of me I never knew and taught to me embrace it. That’s why his betrayal hurts so much. 1
With Rowan, I always knew he didn’t like me. Even when we were younger, he tolerated me because I was Emma and Travis‘ sister. Yes he hurt me and it broke my heart, but deep down I always knew it was to be expected. His hate for me, no matter how painful wasn’t new.
When it comes to Ethan though, it’s painful because I never expected he would hurt me. I thought we were on the same page. I thought that he felt the same way. I thought his feelings and actions towards me weren’t tainted. It hurt because it turned out to be a lie. It hurt because I never saw it
I should have though. Everyone in my life, except Noah, has hurt me. I was now even doubting
Letty and my new found parents. How do I know they don’t have ulterior motives? How do I know
they won’t hurt me or betray me? How do I know they’re not just playing me?
The fucking questions never leave me and it was driving me insane.
Tired of pacing and driving myself crazy, I take a hat, sunglasses, my car keys and then I leave. I
start driving not really sure where I was going.
I don’t know how I end up at the court house, but it’s only after I park my car that I realize where I
- am. I look at my hat and sunglasses and frown. Maybe subconsciously this is where I was going
“This is damn crazy” I tell myself as I put my disguise on.
I get out of my car and walk slowly towards the building. I was giving myself time to back out. I don’t though, instead I walk through the doors. I wasn’t here because I wanted to see justice get
served. I was here to see him one last time.
Nora and Theo managed to keep his hearing and wrong doings from leaking to the media. I can’t
imagine the kind of damage that would do to their company image. Thought a part of me tells me
that they’re doing that for Ethan’s sake. 1)
I internally count the room numbers until I get to the one that was hosting Ethan’s hearing.
Slowly, I open the door. Thank goodness it doesn’t make a sound. I didn’t want anyone knowing I
I quietly enter the room and take the furthest seat. I fix my disguise, just to make sure that
everything is okay before silencing my phone.
I watch as Chief Officer Brian gives his testimony.
Ethan was on the right with his lawyer. My parents were right behind him. On the other hand, the
prosecutor was on the left side.
This side had more people. Some of the cops were there. So were Travis, Letty and surprisingly
Rowan. I didn’t expect him here. He did hate Ethan though, and Rowan is the kind who loves
watching his enemies crash and burn.
Looking at the setting, I realize that I was seated on Ethan’s side.
“And how does your client plead against the charges by the police department?” the judge, a
woman who seems to be in her sixties asks.
Ethan whispers in his lawyer’s ears before the man answers.
“Guilty” he says in a strong.
“Okay then, you may continue” she says and Brian continues.
Brian goes back to talking. He tells the courtroom how Ethan came here a few months back. That they got his transfer papers to their station. He didn’t see anything wrong and he never questioned anything because of the transfer. It all seemed in order so they just took him. He also seemed to know what he was doing so they never questioned anything.
After him, next to testify were the three other cops there. Then Travis and finally Letty. Travis didn’t say much. He only talked about Ethan’s friendship with Letty. Letty talked about the role he played in my life and how we never suspected a thing. She also recounted the day we were
kidnapped. Not missing any details.
After everyone has testified the judge takes a break and then comes back after a while.
“There is no need to prolong this hearing given the accused has already pleaded guilty and
confessed to every accusation levelled against him” she begins saying.
“Ethan Howell, for the case leveled against you, you’re going to receive two years for
impersonating a police officer, two years for kidnapping, two years for falsifying documents and fifteen years for murder attempt with a possibility of parole. That being said, case closed” the
judge hits her gavel and stands up.
Something breaks in my heart at hearing his sentence. Twenty one years in prison is a pretty long
When everyone begins standing up, I look at Ethan one more time before slipping out the door. I
rush outside just as a tear makes its way down my cheek. I honestly didn’t know what to feel.
“Did you really think I wouldn’t be able to recognize you, Ava?” his deep voice startles me. 1
I turn to find Rowan staring intently at me. His brows pulled down. His intense grey eyes
searching mine. I don’t say anything, instead I just wipe my tears. How the hell did he know it was
“Are you okay?” he asks softly walking towards me.
He pulls the hat from my head and takes away my sunglasses.
“No” I whisper just as another tears falls down.
He pulls a sirand of hair behind my ear and then wipes my tears away. Pulling me into his arms,
he hugs me close before resting his chin on my head.
“You’ll be okay…you’re the strongest woman I know. Look at all the shit I put you through and you’re still fucking standing. You came out on the other side stronger. You’ll fucking survive this
Ava” he tells me with confidence.
I stay there for a while crying, but pull away once I hear people coming out.
“I need to leave” I mumble. I didn’t want anyone seeing me here.
He stares at me for a while before nodding. “Come on, I’ll drive you. I can’t let you leave while
I don’t argue with him. I just hand him my keys.
I look back just as Ethan is being escorted outside by the police. My eyes crash with his, but I
immediately pull them away and get into my car.
It was time to say goodbye to a love that was starting to bloom, but never got the chance to fully
blossom into something beautiful.
It was time to say goodbye to Ethan.