Chapter One

Chapter One

A Chapter by Jessica Harton

Blue. Red. Red. Blue. The lights were the only things disturbing the darkness. Her small heart pounded as she tried to speak, to scream; but no sound came out. She scanned around the darkness, but found no way to reach the window that was placed high on the wall. She faintly heard footsteps in the distance. No. Please, no. The child tried to place her small body as far from the sound as possible. “Lilly-pad, where are you my sweet?” The familiar, bloodcurdling voice sounded as if it was beside her. The child let out a yelp, and began to whimper softly. “Lillian, Uncle Henry just wants to help you. Come to Uncle Henry, my love.” The voice came from under the window placed high by the ceiling. She waited until the sirens were closer, then she tried to run. She was almost at the door when she felt a shooting pain in her scalp. “I got you now, you little runt.” She screamed. He was pounding her head into the wall…

Thump. Thump. Thump. “No! Leave me alone!” Lilly woke screaming, a cold sweat all over her body. Thump. Thump. Thump. There was a steady pounding in her head. It kept getting louder and louder. “Lilly open the damned door!” Brian. Brian was at the door. She scrambled out of bed and was searching her floor for clothes when she heard a crash and a curse from the front room. She forgot all about the clothes as she ran into the living room in only a sheet to find her neighbor and best friend, Brian, running towards her.

“Brian? What in God’s name are you doing?” she screeched when she saw the shape her apartment was in.

He ignored her as he grabbed her and pulled her into a hug. “I heard you screaming. Was it the dream again?” He lifted her chin to look into her eyes. His dark chocolate eyes bored into her green ones.

“I’m fine.” She pulled out of his grasp. “Yes, it was the dream. But it was only that, Brian. A dream. You didn’t need to run in here like I’m some damsel in distress. Aren’t you busy? I thought I saw you with that busty little bleach blonde, Whoresey, or whatever her name was.”

His eyes narrowed on her stubborn expression. “Josey. Her name was Josey. And look at yourself, Lilly. You’re pale as hell and I can tell you’ve been crying. Let me take care of you.”

“Take care of me?”She screeched. “I am twenty-two years old, Brian. I don’t need a babysitter. Especially a 6’4” brute who thinks his best friend’s idea of a good time on her birthday is to sit at home waiting for him only to go to bed and have to listen to you f*****g that bimbo, Jane.”

“Lilly. I have apologized a million times! I’m sorry I forgot your birthday. We’ve been friends for years, and I have never once forgotten your birthday. I’m sorry. And her name is Josey.”

“I don’t care what her name is! Brian, I don’t need your pity. They are just dreams. Figments of my imagination. Now give me sixty bucks and go back to Hussy.”

Josey. Her name is Josey. And you damn well know I’m not giving you pity,” he spat out, disgusted. “You aren’t staying in a hotel, Lilly.”

“I damn well can’t stay here! Look at my apartment.”

He looked around himself. There was splintered wood and glass where the door hit the lamp everywhere. “Damn, Lilly. I’ll pay for everything.”

“You sure as hell will. Along with the hotel I have to stay at now. And believe me, buddy, it’ll be a five star.” She started to her bedroom, knowing he was following her. She grabbed a suitcase out of her closet and began throwing clothes into it.

“You are going to have to drive me. My car is in the shop. Hope Whoresey doesn’t mind. Where is she, anyway? I’d think she’d want to know what is taking you so long.”

“I made her go home. We’re over.”

She made an exasperated sound. “I’d offer my apologies, but we both know I’m a terrible liar.”

He snickered,” Yeah, I know. Lilly, you aren’t staying at a hotel when you can stay with me.”

“You don’t have a guest room, Brian. I’m not exactly a couch person. Just take me to a hotel.” She started for the bathroom but he caught her arm.

“Lil, I’ll take the couch. Just get dressed and get your sweet little a*s to my place before I have to manhandle you.”

The look of shock and disbelief ran across her face before it settled into a mask of humor. “Yeah, right Brian. You don’t have the balls. Besides, I’m too heavy-“ The words barely made it out of her mouth before he threw her over his shoulder, sheet and all, and began the 20 second walk to his apartment.

“Brian! Put me down this instant!” She couldn’t keep the laughter out of her voice as she tried to scold him. “I am not a child!”

He walked through his still open door that he didn’t shut in his haste to get to her. “You want down? Fine.”

He threw her on his bed and abruptly stopped laughing as the sheet that was snugly wrapped around her got stuck on the foot board and all the breath left his lungs as she landed on her back completely naked.


“What are you staring a- oh, my God!” Lilly scrambled to wrap the sheet around her body as Brian stared, transfixed. “Brian. Brian? Brian!” Brian’s stony mask cracked and she saw an amused expression flicker over his features.

“When did you get the tattoo? I won’t lie. I’m kind of upset you didn’t tell me about it. I thought you didn’t like it when people ‘degraded themselves by putting ink in their skin.’ What changed your mind?” His grin faded. “Did you do that for Bobby? What, did he bat his pretty eyelashes and ask for you to ‘show your commitment’ right before he dumped you? Jeeze Lil, I thought you had more respect for yourself than that.”


“I mean, what the hell were you thinking? You didn’t even like this guy!”

Lilly got out of the bed and smacked him on the shoulder to stop his ramblings.

“Brian! Will you please stop yelling like an idiot? You'll wake up the neighbors.”

He reached out and closed his hand around her wrist in a tight grip, then he grinned at her.

“We don't have any neighbors, Lilly-Lou. And you aren't going to be able to change the subject so easily.”

He was right. They were the only tenants in the beach-front apartment building they lived in. Lilly gave him a purely stubborn look. “Watch me. It's my body and my business.”

He looked like he was going to pursue the subject and she breathed a sigh of relief when he turned and walked away from her.

“I'm only dropping the subject for now”, he said. “Be prepared to answer the question in the morning.”

She stared at him, clad in only a pair of basketball shorts, his hair disheveled and looking like he'd been raking his fingers through it in frustration.

“You okay? You look a little stressed. You didn't get your nightly exercise before you kicked Hussy out?” Lilly asked, only slightly kidding. Brian paused at the doorway of his bedroom with his back to her. “Get some sleep, Lil”, he said. “We'll talk about it in the morning . “ With that said, he shut the door behind him.

Lilly turned and walked to Brian's dresser to get some clothes. Brian seemed like he had something on his mind, and she didn't want to bother him so she could get clothes out of her own apartment. After grabbing a t-shirt and boxers, she walked to his en suite bathroom and ran water for a bath. Their apartments were the exact same layout, yet they were completely different. While Lilly's was made up of bright colors and decoration, Brian's was made up of earth tones and little personal items. His place would probably be empty if it weren't for Lilly dragging him to the furniture store and telling him she wasn't leaving until he got something other than lawn chairs to sit on. She smiled faintly when she remembered the look on his face when she jokingly went to a floral printed couch and told him how nice it would look in front of the fire place. She thought he was going to cut and run before she could tell him she was only kidding. After putting her hair up she sunk into the hot water with a sigh of pleasure. Her cure for the tremors that always racked her body after one of her dreams was always a long, hot bubble bath. No bubbles this time, but it was good enough.

After her bath, she dressed in Brian's baggy clothes and went in the living room in search for him. She found him in the kitchen with a plate of Oreos and a two glasses of milk on the table in front of him. She smiled at their old ritual. “You know me so well.” She said. “How did you know that I wasn't just going to go to sleep?”

He look up at her, his eyes tired and his hair adorably disheveled. “You are thoroughly predictable. You could never sleep after one of your dreams, and you're always up for chocolate.”

“That I am. So, wanna talk about the break up?”

“Nothing to talk about. I never really liked her all that much anyway. She was just a means to an end.”

She believed it. She's known Brian practically her whole life. He never got serious about a woman. She'd always wondered why. Brian was smart, gorgeous, and funny. He just couldn't commit.

“Why haven't you ever gotten serious with a woman, Bri? You're twenty-three years old, and you've never had a long term relationship. It's always just a 'wham-bam-thank-you-maam' type of a relationship. I think you're longest lasted, what, a month and a half? What's up with you?”

He peered at her over the milk he was draining. When he put it down and wiped his mouth he stood up and began to clear the table. After rinsing off the dishes, he turned towards her.

He said quietly, “You're enough woman in my life, Lilly-Lou.” He pulled her off of the chair and wrapped his arms around her. “Now go get some sleep. And if you promise not to scare the s**t out of me again, I'll make french toast in the morning.” He said when he finally let her go.

“You sure do know how to please a woman.” She said, jokingly. “I still think you need another woman in your life, you know, romance.” His response was to glare and grab for her. She quickly ran for the bedroom, Brian in hot pursuit. They collided when she grabbed a pillow and turned around to hit him. They fell laughing as he tackled her to the bed. When she finally got her breath, she looked up at him with a grin on her face.

“I got you with at least three blows before you tackled me. I won.”

“You better watch your mouth, Lil” he laughed, “You know I know how to get you to surrender.”

He placed his hands near her side warningly. “Okay, okay. It was a tie, then.” She laughed,”But we both know that I won.”

“Riiight.” He kissed her forehead. “Now go to sleep.” Brian made a move to get off of the bed, but Lilly clung to him.

She looked up at him sleepily. “Stay with me. Like old times.”

“Okay” He said softly, “Go to sleep.”

He turned off the lamp and pulled the down comforter and sheet over them. Then everything went black as she feel into blissful sleep.

© 2010 Jessica Harton

Author's Note

Jessica Harton
This is the first chapter of my story, "The One Who Knows."
I'm open to all criticism so don't be afraid to say what's on your mind.

My Review

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Featured Review

Quite a good opening to your book. Nothing to make the reader want to put it down and the description is just right. You might want to make Lilly a bit more confused in her dialog in the beginning because she just woke up. There is a tiny spelling error at the end, "as she feel into blissful sleep," should be "fell." That's all I could find for criticism. Well done. Keep writing.

Posted 13 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


Quite a good opening to your book. Nothing to make the reader want to put it down and the description is just right. You might want to make Lilly a bit more confused in her dialog in the beginning because she just woke up. There is a tiny spelling error at the end, "as she feel into blissful sleep," should be "fell." That's all I could find for criticism. Well done. Keep writing.

Posted 13 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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1 Review
Added on September 28, 2010
Last Updated on September 28, 2010


Jessica Harton
Jessica Harton

Baton Rouge, LA

I'm at a crossroad where I'm supposed to know who and what I'm going to be later in life. To help myself figure it out, I thought about my passions. I discovered that I'm not passionate about many thi.. more..