Drake let out the breath he'd been holding all year. Never again would Alex Parker darken his doorway. Since last summer, even more memories had emerged with counseling and simply personal realizations. Despite the heightened detail to what had happened, Drake had been able to forgive Alex albeit a good time after the rest of his family. She was on his mind now.
Bianca sat beside him, her hand in his. When the verdict was reached, she began to cry and he led her outside into the ripening June air.
"Sorry," she said, pushing a lock of her newly purple hair out of her eyes, "I'm just relieved I guess,"
"Me too," Drake whispered. He looked at the grass as he talked. It was still awkward around her.
Bianca had only been back a week. Drake could tell she had undergone many of the same changes he himself had.
His phone went off, it was another girl. There were still a few who persisted but he had not been that interested this year. Most took it as him growing up as his grades were improving too but the truth was Drake had been waiting. While he was waiting he'd gotten bored and so done homework. If fact, he'd done so much homework that he was headed for school the following year…for a social worker.
They sat on the front lawn of the court house; people were all around waiting for there sessions to start. Half an hour later, the rest of the family came out the double doors. They all had a reserved look of happiness about them. Alex would be serving five consecutive life sentences without chance of bail they told them.
This time it was Drake's turn to brake down. Although he couldn't say he liked the amount of tears he had shed this past year, they came as a well needed release now. Audrey knelt in front of the boy whom her ex-husband had tormented most. His shoulders heaved as he let his mother hold him for the first time in a long time.
Drake sat up, rigid in his bed then sighed, angry at himself. He had been able to deal with everything else; why then, did Alex still appear in his sleep? He got up and put on his hoodie as the nights were still a bit chilly. There wouldn't be much more sleep tonight. It was already four o'clock though. Light would come soon and Drake would just have to wait it out.
Josh's eyes opened. Although not so severe, he saw visions of Alex at night like his brother. They never lasted long but were filled with what the man had done to him when nobody else saw. He'd moved on but the memories still lingered. Only his own father knew the full extent of it.
Josh sat up, glancing out the window (a habit too pointless to try and quit). It brought him back to a night over a year ago, except this time, Drake was not wearing his hood and he was not alone. Josh saw Drake reach up and give a little tug on the ear. He smiled, recognizing the old warning. His brother had come up with it to communicate the fact that he didn't want an interruption to his conversation. The conversation was usually with a girl.
Josh probably wouldn't have interrupted anyway. Drake had never been like this about a girl before. Bianca was special to him.
They talked for what must have been hours for when the conversation subsided it was easily seven o'clock. It had been about nothing at first, then everything.
Drake told her of his year; the therapy and the lingering dreams. Both of which would hopefully fade in time. He talked about graduation and how he hadn't had a date for the prom yet had still gone. He had hung out with his friends and had even danced with a few girls but that was it.
It seemed small compared to the year she had come back from.
He learned that she had somehow gotten to Halifax in Nova Scotia. There she had met up with some distant cousin completely by chance. Bianca lived with him for about four months until his girlfriend moved in. From there she found this weird connection and went to South America with this obtuse group of people who built clinics in poor rural communities. After a month of that she decided she might need some more money as her mooching skills seemed to have a limit and took a job as a stewardess on a rich and senile old lady's yacht. Apparently the women liked her so much that she offered an endless supply of cash for as long as she was sensible about it and consulted the lady on big purchases. Amongst all this, Bianca was able to heal the soul that had been broken and twiddle all the different sects of the time with Alex to a few scattered dreams from time to time. Most would have called it unbelievable but truth filled every word.
Basically, Bianca had set her self up for life in the course of a year. She had just begun a correspondence course going for a journalist when the call had come that she had to come back.
Drake could only stare at Bianca. It was almost impossible to believe that one person could do so much in the course of a year. He noticed with a smile, that her eyes held a shine that he himself had regained.
When it was all said and done they merely sat in silence. It was actually a surprise when Drake felt Bianca's lips meet his. A very welcome surprise.
Josh was going through his closet picking out the clothes he would be taking to Ottawa with him. Both brothers had been accepted at Carlton and would be going up in a few weeks to scout out the school and their accommodations. Naturally, he would be packing for Drake as well.
Just as Josh was finishing the list of stuff for their trip, Drake walked in the door; a private smile on his face.
"You look happy," Josh commented smiling himself.
"You smell funny," Drake rebuked. However the slash had little effect as his smile broadened to goofy proportions. "Josh, I'm going insane,"
"All ready achieved but what's the non-clinical excuse?" Josh asked.
"I'm in love with my stepsister,"
Josh chuckled, "No kidding,"
Drake blushed; another maddening habit that had emerged in the last year, "I don't know if I can handle another year without her though. All I did this year was miss her,"
"And gain an 'A' average but I do see your problem,"
They didn't have time to discuss it anymore because Bianca had added another smile to the room. In fact she ran full force to Drake and threw he arms around him, "This relationship just got a whole lot weirder,"
Josh smirked again as they kissed, "What happened?" he asked.
Bianca turned and ran into a hug with him too, "You parents are going to adopt me!" she cried.
"Whoa," Both boys said together.
She frowned, "Are you okay with it?"
"Yes," They said together again.
"It might be hard to explain with us though," Drake laughed. She did too.
Suddenly Josh got an idea, "Bianca, would you agree that it's time for some fresh starts in light of everything,"
His face showed that he had something in his head, "Do you want to live with us in Ottawa?"
The answer was in her smile.
Hey peoples so this is the last chapter. I am so sorry I didn't get it to you earlier but school I suppose. I would like to thank you all once more for all the reviews. Helped alot and I will take your critiques with me to new writing. Hopefully there will be some new stuff out but in the mean time I am working on a Josh and His mom oneshot so you can look forward to that. Thanks again all you readers and I hope you return, I'll miss you all.