Summary: When Spencer falls at the hands of her abusive girlfriend, Carmen, only one person can bring her back to reality.

Rated M for future refrences of violence and drug use, some mature themes later on.

So, this is my first South of Nowhere fanfiction. Basically, the storyline revolves around Spencer, and her abusive relationship with Carmen. This story will be in mostly Ashley's POV, but I will tell you if the POV changes throughout the story. This is my first fanfiction doing first person POV, so I hope it comes off as a good story. Please read and review, I'd love to hear your thoughts. ~ Coco

Rescue Me

Chapter One: Realizations

I heard my phone ringing, the sound of Justin Timberlake's newest song ringing through the room. I rolled over onto my side, throwing the covers off me as I reached for my phone on my nightstand. I threw a glance at the clock, which read 4:00 am. Frowning, I looked at the caller ID and couldn't supress the smile that spread across my face. Spencer was flashing across the screen with each ring that my phone made. I flipped the phone open and laid back onto my back, holding the phone to my ear. "Hey, you," I whispered.

"Ashley." I heard her holding back a sob, and I sat up on my bed, instantly alert.

"Are you alright, Spencer?" I asked her, biting my lip as I waited for her answer.

She sobbed and I felt my heart drop in my chest. My Spencer was crying. But why?

My Spencer. That was a new one. She hadn't been mine since the day she broke up with me, three months ago. Reflex, I guess.

"It's happened again," Spencer whispered so low, I could hardly hear her.

My hands curled into fists, crumpling my bedsheet. I felt my viens boiling with anger as I jumped out of bed, still holding the phone to my ear. "I'll be right there," I promised, trying to keep my voice under control.

I didn't hesitate to get ready, so by the time I got out to my car, my jeans were half on, my shirt was crumpled as I struggled to get it on, while still trying to keep Spencer on the phone. Finally, I hung up the phone, regretting it as I got into my car.

I nearly ran over two elderly ladies, one dog and a kid while making my way over there. What they were doing out at 4:30 am, I'll never know. But then again, this is Los Angeles. Where the unexpected happens.

I didn't even have to knock as I made my way to her door. She was already there, her arms wrapped around herself protectively. Her hair was covering her face, her head down.

I walked up to her and placed my hand under her chin, gently lifting her head up to look at me. I nearly gasped at the sight at the split lip and black eye, but held it back. I could tell from her face that she could see my surprise.

"It's not as bad as it looks," she said, moving backwards so my hand slid off her face.

"Spencer.." I started, stepping forward. She flinced and I stopped in my tracks, holding my hands up to show her I wouldn't do anything. "Why do you put up with this?" I asked, my voice breaking as I tried to hold back my anger.

"Carmen just loses her temper. It's really not a big deal." Spencer crossed her arms across her chest again and stepped aside, to invite me into the house.

"I should go punch her in the face," I snapped, turning around, keys already out of my pocket and in my hands. I started down the sidewalk, but heard Spencer call my name, and I stopped, turning to look at her.

The pain was evident in her features. "Dont," she said simply.

I hesitated, the keys digging into my palms. I fought the urge to wince as I felt the keyblade break through the skin.

"Please," Spencer said again, this time pleading.

I looked from my car to her, back and forth for what seemed like a few minutes, before I sighed and walked back to her.

"Thank you," she whispered. She moved aside again, and this time I stepped inside, waiting for her as she shut the door.

I looked around the room. "Are your parents home?" I asked.

She shook her head, and walked past me into the living room. I trailed behind her, keeping my distance as she sat on the couch. Instinctively I sat down, scooting towards her. "Are we going to talk about this?" I asked, my voice low, even though I knew no one else was home.

"There's nothing to talk about," Spencer replied. A second after saying that, her hand moved up to her split lip, and she winced as her fingertips touched it.

I stood up. "Let me go get some ice." She didn't reply, so I moved quickly into the kitchen, heading to the freezer. My hand trailed the ice button, and I pushed it, grabbing the ice in my hands as it came down. Great. Nowhere to put the ice.

Looking around, I placed the ice on the counter and grabbed a towel rag. I scooped the ice onto the rag and

tied it up. Sighing, I made my way back to the living room.

She took the ice from me, and our fingertips grazed each other. I cleared my throat and stepped away as she applied the ice to her lip.

"This is the third time it's happened," I said, after a countless moment of silence.

Spencer seemed unphased. "It was my fault."

I sighed. "It always is." I hissed.

Spencer's head snapped up to look at me, and I regretted saying anything as I saw the pain in her eyes. She stood up, the ice pack still on her lip. "You should go," she said, moving past me into the main room.

I followed her, but I didn't agree. "I'm not leaving you alone. She could come by." When Spencer didn't answer me, I stepped in front of her, forcing her to stop. "She hit you, Spencer. Does that not ring a bell?"

"I told you she didn't mean to."

"So you just happened to be in the way of her fist?" I asked sarcastically.

"Things happen, Ashley, you should know that." Spencer said coldly.

"This isn't about me, Spencer. You're in a bad relationship. Carmen only loves that you're her punching bag. She doesn't care about you. Or what she does to you."

"Get out!" Spencer cried suddenly, making me jump. She pointed towards the door, but I crossed my arms across my chest and shook my head.

"I told you I'm not leaving you alone."

Spencer, knowing very well that I was stubborn, sighed and gestured to the living room. "You can sleep on the couch."

"Not your bed?" I asked, smiling.

Not knowing I was joking, Spencer glared at me. "We're not together anymore, Ashley. Therefore, you get the couch."

Obviously she didn't get the joke. But I don't blame her. She's been going through a rough time the past couple of months.

I sighed and watched her head upstairs, slowly. Part of me still felt the urge to follow her up there, to make sure she was safe. I shook my head at the thought and continued into the living room.

I laid down on the couch and threw the blanket half over myself. I tried to keep my eyes open, my mind was buzzing with thoughts. But my eyes were the opposite. As hard as I tried to keep them open, they finally closed after a few minutes of fight.

I laid down on the couch and threw the blanket half over myself. I tried to keep my eyes open, my mind was buzzing with thoughts. But my eyes were the opposite. As hard as I tried to keep them open, they finally closed after a few minutes of fight.

What seemed like a few seconds later, my eyes snapped open, and I sat up abruptly. My eyes searched the room, and I heard the shuffling of feet. I held a hand up to my eyes and wiped the sleep away, my head turning to look at the clock. It was 6:00 am. It had only been an hour and a half.

"Spencer?" I asked, moving the blanket off of me and twisting my body around so that my feet were placed on the floor. I saw her step out into the sunlight from the window, tears staining her face. I walked over to her, placing my hands around her. She broke down in my arms, and I could feel her body shuddering underneath me.

"It's okay," I whispered, moving her head so that she was looking at me. I realized she looked worse than she had a couple of hours ago. Her lip was swollen, the cut above her eye had started bleeding again. My hand slid down to her arm, and I gently dragged her into the kitchen. She took a seat, leaning down, her head in her hands.

My hands reached for the dish towel and I kneeled down by Spencer. She looked up at me, her lip quivering. I gently pressed the dish towel to her head, the blood seeping through. Holding back a flinch, I locked eyes with her.

"Did you sleep at all?" I asked, knowing the answer already.

Spencer shook her head, reaching up and wiping a tear from her cheek. She broke eye contact with me and reached up to hold the towel in place. I took the hint and removed my hand.

"When are your parents going to be home?"

She shrugged. "They went away for the night with Glen. They said they'd be back in the afternoon. Carmen was supposed to come over to keep me company." She looked up at me when she mentioned Carmen's name, and I felt my hands clench into fists.

"I'm staying until they get back."

Spencer nodded and stood up, walking over to the kitchen mirror. She winced at her reflection and removed the dish towel. "I should go get cleaned up." She turned to look at me, as if asking for my permission.

I nodded and she walked past me, to the upstairs. After a few seconds, I turned to the fridge and opened it, getting out some eggs. I may not be the best chef in the world, but I know a few things.

By the time the eggs were ready, Spencer had made her way downstairs, a bandage over her eye, and dressed in an old sweatshirt and a ragged pair of jeans. As I set the eggs on the table, it finally hit me. I had never seen Spencer like this before. So fragile. Weak. A burst of anger rose up into my chest, and I took a deep breath, supressing the urge to hit the wall. Instead, I focused my attention on Spencer. I pointed to the eggs and set a fork next to the plate.

"You should eat something."

She sat down at the table and picked up her fork. I sat down opposite her, watching her. She picked at her eggs for a few minutes before I finally spoke up.

"I'm not that bad of a cook."

A weak smile spread across her lips, and I felt a sense of relief. She picked up a piece of egg with her fork and stuffed it into her mouth, keeping eye contact with me as she chewed. I reassured her that the eggs were fine with a smile, and after she swallowed the mouthful she had she nodded.

"Not bad, for someone who's never cooked in her life." She suddenly made a face and I heard a crunching sound as she bit down. "Except for the few shells."

"Were those not supposed to be part of the meal?" I asked in mock surprise, and Spencer let out a small laugh. My heart leaped in my chest. "There's the smile I love so much."

Her smile faded, and she picked more at her eggs. "You can leave you know. You don't have to stick around and wait for my parents to get home."

"I want to." I replied. I studied her face carefully. "What are you going to tell them?" When Spencer looked at me, I verified. "About the bruises. I have a feeling they won't buy the 'I fell' excuse."

"I'll tell them the truth." Suprise must have crossed my face because Spencer spoke up quickly. "I got into a fight."

"You're not going to tell them about Carmen?" I asked.

Spencer put her fork down. "They don't have to know."

I felt the anger build up inside me again. "Spencer, you can't let her keep doing this to you."

"Don't tell me how to live, Ashley. God only knows you're not the poster child for healthy living." She snapped.

I flinched at that repsonse and bit down on my lip to keep from responding. "Right, and living as a punching bag for someone counts as a life." Guess it didn't work.

She slid back, the sound of the chair squeaking on the tiled floor deafening in the silence that followed. She grabbed up her plate and walked over to the sink, leaning against it, facing away from me.

I took a deep breath and got up, taking a few careful steps toward her. "Spencer..." I hesitated, wanting more than anything to just reach out and hold her.

"Get out." She said coldly, her back still facing me.

I stood my ground. "I'm not going anywhere."

She threw the plate into the sink. It smashed, egg and glass flying up towards her. She turned to me now, and I saw in that moment just how much I had hurt her. Her face was etched with pain and anger. "Get out!" She screamed, stamping her foot on the ground.

I crossed my arms across my chest. "No." I stated plainly.

She stood there for a few seconds, her chest moving up and down as she took in deep breathes. Finally, she pushed herself off the sink and charged past me, into the main hall.

I followed her. "Where are you going?" I asked, as I watched her put on her jacket.

"You're not leaving, so I'll leave."

"Spencer, it's 6:30 in the morning. Where are you going to go!?"

She shrugged and zipped up her jacket. "Maybe Carmen is still awake."

That hit a nerve. She reached for the doorknob, and I ran over and grabbed her hand, pulling her away roughly from the door. "You're not seeing her!" I snapped, blocking the doorway with my body.

"Don't tell me who I can and can't see!" She moved forward, attempting to push me out of the way, but I held my ground. "Get out of the way!" She yelled, running a hand through her hair, exsaperated. "You can't stop me from seeing Carmen." She finally said, her voice low.

"I don't understand though, Spencer," I started, falling away from the door a bit. "Why go back to her when she did this to you."

"She loves me." She tried to say it with confidence, but her voice cracked a little.

I shook my head. "She doesn't love you, Spencer. She just loves hitting you. And you know what I don't understand? Why you let her." I knew I shouldn't have said those words as soon as I saw the hurt flicker across her face.

She turned away from me and unzipped her jacket. "Please, Ashley. Just leave me alone." Her voice was weak and low, and I could tell she was trying not to cry.

Reluctantly, I finally stepped away from the door and opened it. I stepped outside, and turned to see Spencer. But all I saw was the closed door. I sighed and dug into my pocket, grabbing my keys. I headed down the driveway towards my car. I turned around and threw one more glance towards the house as I got into my car.

From the window, I could see her watching me. I held up my hand and waved to her slowly, pressing my palm against the cold glass of the window.

She didn't wave back. Instead, she shut the blinds, and I felt my heart drop in my chest.

"I will help you," I promised, as I started up my car.

That was a promise I intended to keep.

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