"The Never Ending Past"

By Lorrie

Chapter 1 – Dreams and Confessions

Disclaimer: The following story is based on the characters of the TV Series "Drake & Josh". The characters belong to the creators and Nickelodian, but the story is mine. ALL DISCLAIMERS APPLY. (No copyright infringement is intended.)

Thunder crashed as lightening ripped across the sky. Drake pushed himself to run faster and faster, turning every few seconds to see if he was still being chased. The running stopped the moment he smashed into a large, solid man. Staring into his green-gray eyes filled Drake with a terror that he had only felt from one man . . . his father.

"Drake!" Josh called out as he shook his step-brother, trying to wake him. "Drake, come on, you're having another nightmare. Wake up!"

Drake bolted upright in bed. "NO!" He shouted, waking everyone in the house.

Audrey and Walter bounded up the stairs and into the room their sons shared. "Drake?" Audrey called to him.

"Son, are you alright?" Walter asked, both making their way to Drake's loft where the teenager sat shaking with his head in his hands.

Audrey wrapped her arms around him. "Another nightmare?" She asked. Drake nodded. "Do you want to talk about it?"

He shook his head. "No."

"Honey, this is the third time this week you've had nightmares. This isn't like you." Audrey stated as she rubbed his back.

He drew in a ragged breath. "I'm fine. I'm just tired and a little stressed about exams."

His mother looked at him with worry in her eyes. "Are you sure?"

Drake nodded and managed a little smile. "I'll be fine mom. Don't worry about me."

She smiled at him, roused his hair and tucked him in bed. "Goodnight." She said as she gently kissed his forehead.

After their parents had left the room, Drake lay still under his comforter. Josh looked up towards the loft. "Drake, are you asleep?" He asked quietly.

"No." Drake replied.

"Do you want to talk?" Josh asked.

Drake shrugged his shoulders. "I don't know." He knew deep down that he needed to talk to someone, but he didn't want his parents to worry.

Minutes passed and just when Josh thought Drake had fallen asleep, he heard him speak. "If I tell you something, you can't tell mom and dad, OK?"

"O-K." Josh replied, hesitantly.

Drake sat on the edge of his bed with just Josh's lamp on. "I've been dreaming about my father." Drake looked down at the floor.

Josh's eyes widened. Drake never talked about his father, no one did.

"Josh, I don't know how much you know about mom and my father's divorce, but it was pretty ugly and most of it had to do with me." Drake confessed.

"I really don't know anything about it. I feel sure that mom told dad everything before they got married, but dad didn't share any of it with me." Josh confessed.

Drake closed his eyes as memories, mostly bad, of his father came to mind. "Mom was working on her graduate degree, taking night classes. She had just found out that she was pregnant with Megan and dad wasn't too happy about that, plus I think he hated staying home with me at nights while mom was in class."

Josh propped himself up on his pillows, sensing that this was going to be a long night, but knowing Drake needed to talk.

"I was only five when all of this started, but I remember all of it. Mom would come home and start on her homework and dad would be all in her face because she hadn't fixed dinner. I can remember hearing them arguing one night and dad said that he was tired of staying home with the brat . . . me . . . while she was out wasting her time and his money."

Josh looked at Drake sympathetically. "Your dad called you a brat?"

"That's only the tip of the iceberg, brother." Drake said as he hopped off of his bed, grabbed a partially eaten bag of chips and took a seat on the couch.

Josh got up and joined him on the couch. "What does this have to do with your nightmares?"

"After a few months of mom going to class and dad staying home with me, dad really began to hate me. He hated the sound of me, the sight of me, even the mention of my name would get him going." Drake said, closing his eyes for a moment, thankful that it was still dark enough in the room that Josh couldn't see the tears forming in the corners of his eyes.

"Drake, are you OK? Do you want some water or something?" Josh asked.

Drake shook his head. "No. I'm OK." He replied and then cleared his throat. "Anyway, after a few months, my father started swatting me with a fly swatter. He had never as much as spanked me before, but suddenly he was swatting me every chance he got. Sometimes it was for toys I had left out on the floor, or for not clearing my dishes from the table after dinner, but sometimes it was just because he felt like swatting me."

Drake was afraid to look at Josh's face. He knew if he did he wouldn't be able to finish. "He dared me to tell mom, so I kept my mouth shut, but soon the swatting turned to hitting. In the beginning he would hit me with the back of his hand, but only in place where my clothes would cover so no one would know what was happening, but he was getting more and more frustrated and by the time mom was ready for exams, he had gone from hitting to punching."

Tears were streaming down Josh's face. He wiped them away, hoping Drake couldn't see him. "And mom still didn't know?" He asked.

Drake shook his head. "She had a lot going on with school and she never had any reason to think my father would do anything like that." He stared straight ahead before continuing. "But one night when she came home and he had gone too far . . . she found me laying in heap on the kitchen floor, covered in blood and a note from dad on the kitchen table telling her that he was sorry for everything."

Josh stared at Drake in disbelief. "He beat you that badly?" He heard his own voice crack as he spoke.

Drake nodded. "I spent almost a month in the hospital recovering from a concussion, four broken ribs and a broken leg. There was a lot of internal bleeding and, well a lot of it, I either don't remember or don't want to remember."

"I had no idea, Drake." Josh started.

Drake shrugged his shoulders. "It was a long time ago, but bringing things up to the present, the jerk called me from prison last week."

"HE WHAT?" Josh said loudly, jumping to his feet.

"Shhhh!" Drake brought his finger to his lips and placed one hand on Josh's shoulder. "Keep it down,you'll wake everybody up again."

"Drake, we have to tell mom and dad about this." Josh exclaimed.

Drake stared at his brother sternly. "You promised me that you wouldn't tell anyone."

"I, I know I did, but Drake . . ." He let his sentence drop. "What else did he say?" He finally asked.

Drake hung his head. "That he coming for me to finish what he started."

Josh placed his hand on his brother's shoulder. "And that's what the dreams have been about?"

Drake nodded. "It's always the same dream. It's dark and stormy, I'm running for all I'm worth and someone's chasing me, then suddenly, he's in front of me and I can't get away from him. That's usually when I wake up or someone wakes me up."

"Are you sure he's still in prison?" Josh asked.

Drake nodded. "I called yesterday just to be sure."

"Then he's just messing with your head, right?" Josh said, laughing nervously.

Drake smiled somewhat. "Yeah, I guess."