They made it to the mall in record time, and Lexi managed to stop the ever irritating whispers rotating and jumping on loop in her fashion-filled head.
Paisley was extremely fidgety and she was stumbling on her feet, her mind obviously on things much more important than shopping clothing.
Lexi was looking at her nails and was internally complaining about how one of them had gotten chipped off unbeknownst to her. She looked up and slowed down when she saw a upcoming car speeding by recklessly. Her heart got a surprise when she realized SHE was the only one who stopped. She gasped and her head snapped over to what she was afraid to see..
The car honked loudly as it stopped just on time, the front of the car giving a tiny bump to Paisley's side..
Lexi immediately pulled Paisley back, scolding her with words along the line of "Geesh Paisley what's wrong with you!" and "Are you trying to give me a heart attack?"
Frightening as it was, it felt as if HER life had flashed before her eyes.
The driver had yelled something before driving off again, but Lexi didn't hear it, she was too busy pulling Paisley away from traffic, onto the sidewalk.. Paisley had only muttered a few 'I'm sorrys' In a voice that sounded particularly monotone. Lexi took that as acceptable anyways and they continued their walk, Lexi putting that scare to the back of her head, as the pressing whispers tried their hand at bugging her again.
Lexi wasn't the only one having thinking issues.
Paisley was having them too, well, more than usual. She was trying to force herself to focus.. But the thought of her mom being abused at that very moment while she was at the mall.. It disgusted her. She disgusted herself. She felt as if she should have done something...anything, but all she did was turn her back and walk away.
Tears begin to slip out of her eyes.
Lexi's eyes were glued to all of the store displays, each store she was tempted on going in, them giving her a heft distraction from her brain, but this was Paisley's day.. So after getting halfway through the mall she turned her head to the right while saying "Paisley, what store do you want to go in? Claires or Rainbow?" They were Lexi's favorite stores but she had to let Paisley THINK she was running the day.
Or atleast she would have to if Paisley had decided to walk with her!
Instead she had plopped down at the sitting area not able to take it anymore.
After a few calls of "Paisley? Paisley?" and heading back the opposite way, Lexi found her, sitting, crying, and being comforted by some strange guy. She made a direct march to them, aware of the fact that he was too close, and easing even closer.
"Go! NOW! SHOO!" Lexi said in a raised tone, shooing him away.
"Is she who's hurting you? Come on you can tell me.. " The boy said, not moving an inch his hand moving around her waist.
" Excuse me? " A mix of confusion, offense, and anger crosses Lexi's face.
" I.. She.. " Paisley was in complete distraught, and she couldn't even figure out what she was trying to say, even if she knew the answer to what he had asked.
" Stay away from her" The guy said. "What kind of friend are you hurting her?" He added, an obvious conclusion jumper. "I won't let her hurt you" He whispered into Paisley's ear,.
"Stay away from her?" Lexi asked. "Stay away from her? No, I advise you to get your hands OFF of my girlfriend before I hurt you! " She yelled, not sure where the violence of her words came from or where the rage she felt now had been hiding.. All she knew was that she wanted to punch him in his face.
A chorus of "ooooooohs" sounded and that's the moment Lexi realized they had caused quite a scene. And in the crowded scene, stood a few of her cheerleader friends from school, gasping in shock and whispering to one another. One was holding out an Iphone 5c, and recording everything they saw.
"Oh so you abuse your girlfriend and you think I'm just going to leave because you threaten me? " The guy says.
" Abuse? Really I would never.. " Lexi began... The people in front of her were looking at her in detest.. It was the first time she ever felt her stomach drop to her feet when people were giving her attention..
All of a sudden she felt a hand on her shoulder. " Look ma'am.. You are causing a commotion and if this girl admits that you are hurting her we have to take you in" Security said.
Paisley's head shot up at this, she had cried so hard her ears felt like they were burning.. "She.. She isn... Isn't.." She choked out. "She's not.."
The security guards hand loosened a bit and Lexi felt a bit of relief wash over her.
"What if she's afraid" The guy said
"To admit she's being hurt"
"Or what if you just want to get in bed with the wounded girl you freak" Lexi retorted.
The guard began to reprimand them both as another guard begin to clear away the onlookers with empty threats of banning them..
The guy wouldn't have it though and threw another insult Lexi's way..
Lexi bit her lip trying to listen to the guard, but wanting to win this argument all the while since she was pro-winning, "Listen I-"
"She's NOT hurting me! " Paisley yelled, standing up voice giving way midway through, tone high and strong then low and squeaky.
" She's not, someone else is ... I.. I'm a failure of a daughter okay? Just leave her... Her alone " She finished with struggle, then fleeing quickly.
"If you'll excuse me, PLEASE?.." Lexi asked her eyes glued to Paisley's running backside. She hadn't noticed the tears in her own eyes until then.
The man nodded and let her go and she could hear him saying something like "If you need to talk to me about anything she tells you, you can reach me at-"
All the way out of ear range by then she didn't hear or care to hear the rest of his sentence she only cared about catching up with Paisley. She was sure that her choice of nude high heels weren't helping that goal, and she lingered only for a slight second about if they made her look cute skittering away.
Finally she caught up with Paisley just as she got outside and wrapped her arms completely around her waist. "Baby stop, calm down.. Please" She started in a rushed way. "Just stay still and take a deep breaths"... She had so many questions she needed to know answers to, but if she couldn't think of a way to ease Paisley, she wouldn't get those..
"Come on" She took hold of Paisley's hand at the notice of staring enter and exiters. She guided them to the car and practically had to push Paisley into the passenger seat because said girl was so zombie-like..
Getting in on the other side, she shut the door and processed the new scenario. Paisley had calmed, but she was just sitting there, frozen, a worser look then the one she wore that morning on her face.
"Paisley, look at me" Lexi demanded. "Look at me now"
Paisley obliged, her eyes expressionless instead of full with light.
"I LOVE you, okay? And whatever is happening to you.. We can get through it together but that can only happen if you tell me what's wrong" Lexi said sternly, lightly touching paisley's forearm.
"Okay? " She said when she got no response.
" Okay.. You are my girlfriend and I totally trust you" Paisley spoke in a semi-clear voice.
The maturity of Paisley's words kind of scared Lexi but what scared her worse was her own level of matureness as she fought the brain inside of her and said "I trust you too. I trust you more than anything, more than my favorite lip glossses reliability, more than my stupid mom and dad, more than myself.. Now please. Tell me babe.. "
Paisley smiled ever-so-slightly, and said.. "Well, I don't know where to start Lexi. Do you want to know about my dad hitting my mom? Or my-"
Wanting to let her finish but not being able to stop herself Lexi blurted out "Did he touch you Paisley? Is this what you meant by that? Someone hurting you..?"
"He didn't hit me"
"Thank god, but then how? " Lexi inquired. "How are you being hurt?"
".. He.. He called me a.. A slut and-"
Lexi got it then, emotionally hurt... She didn't want to hear anything else about what he said to her so she interrupted. "That's bullcrap Paisley. All of it is. I KNOW what slutty is, believe me, it was in style once you know, but you are not that, You are pure and genuine and any guy who says that to their daughter has serious issues"
Paisley seemed surprised at that. "So you don't think I look slutty when I wear my normal clothes?"
"No. You look hot then for sure, but not slutty by any means.." Lexi answered. "You are beautiful the way you are" She added with some extra thought. "Very beautiful"
Paisley hesitated for a second before saying "Good because this style is sorta.. " She paused as she fingered the material of her clothing . "Not my thing" She finished. A soft laugh escaped her throat and it was the best thing Lexi heard all day. Two things were still bugging her though..
"Why do you think you're a failure as a daughter, is it because what he said to you? "
The question came right when Paisley was starting to feel comfortably better. She tensed up.. "No" Was her simple response..
"Then why? " Lexi pressed.
Paisley sighed shortly, found some courage inside of her to look at her girlfriend and begin to speak. " When you came to get me this morning... He.. He was hitting her. It was the first time I saw it. First time I believed he could do... I just left Lexi . I left... I got in the car and bailed on the woman who picked ME from the stork"
"You were scared... " Lexi said, leaning over to kiss Paisley's cheek, guilt overwhelming her.
Maybe if she would have took on the problem when she first saw it that day of Bobby's demise, maybe if she wouldn't have turned a blind eye at the blood trickling down 's mouth and instead said something, something could have been different. Though she didnt know what...She wished she would have told Paisley though, and then the healing process might have been halfway over by then...She frowned.
She really believed Paisley knew, but cared more about a stupid bird. And she felt worse about that. If Paisley knew...Of COURSE she would have been broken up about her parents...It was funny how she actually forgot that it had happened until Paisley mentioned her parents...She had put it so far back in her mind that it didnt even come into her head after that first day she saw it..
"You are not a terrible daughter, you're just scared and it's understandable, ok? I would be too.." Lexi stated, and she actually was...she didnt want Paisley to be anywhere near that guy, or that environment for that matter.
"But.. " Paisley tried.
" No buts.. As for now, we're going to go to your house, get some of your stuff and you're going to stay with me, alright?" Lexi declared, deciding to ignore her own guilty conscience, thinking on her feet to come up with something to make Paisley feel better atleast.
Paisley didn't want to go back to that place but she nodded anyway..
Lexi kissed her lips passionately, before pulling off a mixture of feelings coursing through her bones.
At the house, Lexi stopped the car and got out, only to see Paisley wasn't moving. She leaned in and said "You okay?"
Paisley shook her head, far from it.
"But we'll be fine, were just going to go in, get your stuff and come right back out, alright?" Lexi tried, in a way that it sounded like she was talking to a stubborn child.
"But what if..what if he's still hurting her" Paisley looked up at her a heartbreaking look on her face, then she looked over at her house, then back, then forth, almost like a bobble head.
"Don't be ridi-" Lexi stopped herself. It had been atleast 45 minutes, and in movie scenes abuse only lasts for like..5 minutes at the least. So it was pretty ridicolous..of course..some people did think that what you see in the movies aren't real..her mom for example. Crazy, right? She scoffed to herself at the thought. But still…she didnt want to take a chance.
"Look, i'll call her then, and if she answers, then it's all clear, kay?" She suggested, grabbing her phone and dialing 's number.
"But if she doesn't?" Paisley questioned, looking at her. Lexi frowned, having no answer to that, but she couldn't reply because the phone was picked up quickly and a woman that barely even sounded like Paisley's mom answered with a hushed
" ?" Lexi asked. "Are you okay?"
"Yes..I..I can't be talking on the phone, i'm not suppose to while..I mean.." Paisley's mom began to stutter, and she sounded beyond paranoid.
"No, I get it, I know..Me and Paisley were just checking, we're outside" Lexi walked away from the car noticing Paisley's anxious stares her way. "I was thinking I could take her away from this for awhile, to my house, for a week or two if that's okay with you?"
Lexi honestly didnt care if it was okay or not, she would be doing it eithier way, but still, it was polite to ask anyways. She shuddered to herself. Since when did she care about politness again? Chyna and Olive were wearing off on her.
"Yes please...actually I was going to pack up whenever he left and stay at my sister's house… I was going to take Paisley of course but there isn't much room at her aunt's..so this is a relief"
"So...he's still there now?"
"Yeah, but he's asleep in our-in the bedroom, so as long as you're quiet, it should be no problem.."
"Okay, we'll be right there"
"The door will be open"
"Thanks" Lexi hung up, and turned to Paisley. "She's fine right now, and he'sin bed, so we just have to not be loud, okay?"
"Okay" Paisley smiled wide, she was happy her mom was okay right now.. She got out of the car and Lexi met her at her side and intertwined their hands. They soon were entering the house, but instead of going upstairs, Paisley immediately went and hugged her mom tightly. Her mom looked surprised but hugged her back just as firm. "Mom.." Paisley choked out, a short blast of tears falling down her face. "I'm sorry I didnt do anything..Im sorry I.."
"No, nonsense, you're my baby and I wouldn't want you to get involved in this" Her mom said, pulling away from her a bit. "I just want you to be happy and not have to think about this, okay?"
"But mom, what about you, I can't just let you!-"
"No Hun, Im going to stay with your Aunt Stacie, okay? And please...lower your voice" Her mom looked up the stairs, anxiously.
Lexi felt a bit awkward, and also a bit pained to see them…she only wished her mom cared like that. She shrugged her selfishness aside and tiptoed up the stairs, deciding not to intrude on this mother-daughter moment, and instead get a head start on Paisley's packing.
"But mom what if he tries to find you or - " Paisley started.
"Honey. Me and your dad are getting a divorce..Im taking the car, it's mines, and so he won't have anyway to get all the way out to where Aunt Stacie lives, and even so, Im getting a restraining order" Her mom said.
Paisley froze for a second then said "Good"
"Good?" Her mom repeated, surprised.
"He's not my dad..not anymore" Paisley stated.
"Baby..." Her mom trailed off for a second, then stroked her daughter's hair. "He is. He's just very sick right now...he needs help, but he is still your father"
"No..." Paisley muttered out sadly.
"Yes" Her mom said sternly. "You know how when Bobby was sick? He wasn't himself, right?"
"That's how your dad is right now…he's just not him, right now.." Her mom finished.
"But bobby died...will he die?" Paisley questioned...she couldn't bear being around her father…but she couldn't bear the thought of him being dead either, the memories of them playing around in her head at that moment.
"He's...already dead inside. You see, he's breathing, but he is emotionally numb. This is no excuse for his actions however...And this is why I'm leaving him. It will take time for him to be okay again, ok?" explained.
"Ok mom" Paisley said. "I just wish time would hurry up.."
"Me too hun...why don't you go up and pack okay? I love you"
"I love you too" Paisley said, leaving after her mom kissed her forehead lightly.
Paisley went up the stairs and into her room, feeling a bit of nerves as she passed the room her dad was in, They eased though, when she saw Lexi in her room. For the first time that day, her girlfriend's presence was enough alone to make her feel better. It may have been because the reassurances she had that everything would be ok...eventually, or the fact that the light made Lexi's hair look really shiny and pretty. She smiled and pressed herself against Lexi with a big smile. Lexi turned towards her, dread on her face. Paisley looked up at her, but didnt notice and leaned up for a kiss. Lexi pulled away and lifted her phone up to Paisley's eye-level, instead. There was a text on the screen from Ally, one of Lexi's cheer squad friends.
'I knew something was up, Since when were you a lesbo?' It read, simply.
"I don't get it. What's up? What's a lesbo?" Paisley was puzzled.
"Lesbian. Paisley" Lexi clarified, she opened Lexi's closet and found a sesame street luggage, which was surprisngly pretty big.. "They know about us"
"Oh..um..is that bad?" Paisley questioned as Lexi went through her drawers, her heart beginning to race intensely.
"What? Of course it is! It's the worst!" Lexi yelled in a hushed voice " It's all over Facebook and Twitter and even Keek, -Hey, where did you get these?" Lexi held up some short red laced lingerie that had symmetrical cut offs on the sides and back.
"A thrift store!" Paisley said nonchantly, her eyes full of worry. Lexi cringed, she made a note she had to lecture Paisley about THAT place, later on.
"And..." Paisley hesitated, watching Lexi pack her stuff, not being much help at all. "I think it's kind of awesome. Now those weird guys on the football team won't try and get my digits, whatever that means"
Lexi huffed and blew at her hair for a second before shaking her head, deciding to focus on what she could for the moment, "Only you WOULD think the football team is weird. Go get your hair and body products, they're a must-have in everyday life"
"But Lexi, you have a LOT of that stuff at your house" Paisley noted.
"Yeah, and I need to use it all, everyday, Like i said, It's a must have as in, I must have and I must not share" Lexi responded, rolling her eyes.
Paisley said something but Lexi didnt hear it, the moment where she decided to focus...well that was over.
Chyna had just sent her a text that said 'Man Lexi, That video's audio is crystal clear who knew the Iphone 5c had such a good camera? The comments are pretty mean...though. Don't let it get to you, I'm sure they'll come around' Lexi was curious…she had to check and see what people were saying…
And when she did, there was hardly ANY kind comments, but they weren't to incredibly harsh either so once again, Chyna was overexxagerating. The not to kind, but not to harsh ones were making a joke out of it. 'Lesbo Lexi Unleashed' is what someone said, and that comment got many likes. One person called out the fact that in 7th grade Lexi had stolen her boyfriend so she was probably Bi, and then came the one that bothered her most 'I bet she tried to get free peeks of all the cheerleaders whenever she could, I mean, she was the one who tried to make the skirts shorter..'
It was true that she try and get the skirts length changed but that was during the time where slutty was in style Lexi justified in her head. She was just trying to help the team stay trendy! It was a totally good cause.
She noticed Paisley staring at her, standing by her side, it startled her a bit.
"What?" She asked.
Paisley took her hand, and looked in her eyes. "Why haven't you broke up with me yet?" She asked.
"Huh?" Lexi inquired, confused.
"You told me, that if anyone found out, you'd break up with me"
Lexi tried to think back to when she said that, but didnt recall. "Yeah, but that doesn't mean anything now. Besides, Chyna found out a while ago, and I'm still with you now, aren't I?"
"Yeah, but that was only one Person and now it's so many...like the whole school...and.."
"Look. I only said that so that you'd get the importance of keeping us secret. Im not going to break up with you. I'm not that stupid" Lexi said, pulling Paisley in by the cheeks for a soft kiss. "Now come on, we've wasted enough time, let's finish up so we can get out of here"
Paisley looked over to see Keri wasn't there, nor was the bird food she'd kept. "Be back" She said, going downstairs. Her mom had froze upon hearing footsteps but let out a breath of relief when she saw Paisley.
"Mom. Where's Keri?" She was asked.
"Well, the moment your dad fell asleep, I went and got Keri and asked our neighbors across the street to watch her for awhile. I didnt want anything to wake him...so. I was planning to bring him with me, but if you want, you can pick her up and take her"
"Yeah, I'd like that" Paisley smiled.
After that, Lexi and Paisley finished packing, and Lexi told Paisley to go get Keri from next door. After she carefully brought the luggage down, Lexi smiled at awkwardly for a second before the woman smiled back and came over. "You take care of my daughter, okay?" She said, sincerely. "She's been through more than she should today, so just make sure you keep her happy"
"Trust me , I will" Lexi said, a few perverted thoughts passing through her head as to just how she'd keep Paisley happy. When she looked back into 's motherly eyes however, those faded. "I promise" She added. "Her happiness is the only thing that keeps me happy"
raised an eyebrow, and her smile grew deeper. "I'm glad" She replied. Then she surprised Lexi and pulled her into a hug. Lexi closed her eyes and willed herself not to tear up a bit, she had no clue why this was meaning so much to her, and she knew why all at the same time. Just as released her and began to walk away to do whatever, Lexi grabbed her hand.
"Ms.. . I…me…I'm dating Paisley. We're together. I don't want to keep it from you, and you seem so nice and I.." Lexi rambled, sure what she was doing was stupid and quite reckless but she NEEDED to tell her. It was a feeling deep inside and impulse took over.
"Honey, calm down" stopped her from tripping over her own words. "I know already" She declared.
"You what?!" Lexi yelled only to receive the 'Shhh' gesture. "Sorry" She apologized after. "But what do you mean, you know?"
"I'm a mom, ...I follow all of Paisley's Litter friends, and the video was posted and retweeted by about half of them!"
"Twitter" It was Lexi's automatic reply, she was so use to having to correct old people when it came to the (a thousand) social networking sites.
"It's called twitter...and so, you're not mad or bothered by it?"
"Heavens no…I mean, It's easy to see how much you care from that video alone, and I see how you are with her in person. I'd be a fool to be angry that someone loves my daughter just as much as I do..." Paisley's mom ruffled Lexi's hair and finished with a "You definitely have MY approval"
Lexi's heart felt as if it had been filled with joy. "Thank you , I.."
"No thank you" interrupted, and pulled her in for another hug. "Now you get going, okay?"
"Okay" Lexi smiled, took the luggage, and opened the door to leave, Paisley stumbled into her, since she had been reaching for the doorknob on the other end at the same time. Lexi grinned and pecked her lips before saying "No need to go back in there babe, we're all set"
"Really? Awesome... Mom..." Paisley looked over at her mother.
came over and hugged her tightly. "Be good, okay?" She said.
"Of course" Paisley replied. They exchanged 'I love yous' and then Paisley and Lexi were out of there, and into fresh air.
Everything felt happy and good in Paisley's world now...But Lexi couldn't help but to linger on one thing.
It could quite possibly be the death of her reputation.