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Title: Nothing But The Truth
Prompt: Cassie learns the truth about her parents’ marriage
Universe(s): A Villainous Apocalypse
Word Count: 989
Rating: PG
Summary: Cassie begins to think.
Notes: Technically, this is the immediate aftermath of the actual reveal, which is SUPER spoilery so you cannot has. This is also a scene that will take place in a future update, although it may be in someone else’s point of view (I’ve also written Saxon’s, it just depends on which ends up being most useful).

As soon as they arrived home, Cassie bolted for her room before anyone could tell her not to. Her mother probably wanted to talk to her, but there was no way it was happening with all the guests still there, which was just as well. Cassie didn’t want to talk to anyone, Elle least of all. Not right away.

She locked herself in and sat down on the bed. Stuart, Edie, and the rest of them would probably stay for at least an hour, which would give her some time to think through what she had just heard and process it a little. When she tried, though, fury began to boil up in her. She snatched for one of her throw pillows and bit down on it to stifle a scream. Why didn’t she tell me first? she wanted to shout. That was the worst part. Some things had to be told to family before anyone else, but Cassie had heard her mother’s version of the story for the first time with at least one hundred other people either in the room or tuning in via their TV sets. That angered her more than the reveal itself. Stuart and Saxon had known, almost certainly. Edie, too. Maybe a few others. Why hadn’t anyone told her?

Regardless of the truth, that was unforgivable.

Cassie threw the pillow at the wall and hunched over, clutching at sections of her hair. As for the truth of the matter, her father had always told her the exact opposite; he had always claimed that Elle had used him and then kicked him to the curb once she was done with him. Cassie had believed him without questioning it and Elle had certainly never told her otherwise.

And yet, the more she thought about what had just happened, the harder it became to accept Tristan’s story. Edie had written an editorial for the paper earlier in the week, which Cassie had largely dismissed at the time because of its blatant bias, but there had been one line she could not ignore. It came back to her now: “Anyone who knows Elle Fitzhugh even a little knows that there is not a conniving bone in her body.” Cassie could not deny it. Elle’s behavior that day—and, in fact, for as long as Cassie could remember—had proved that amply. She simply was not that cold.

But Tristan could be. Had been, in the past. Cassie had seen it, a couple times, on visits to the office and weekend trips out on the town.

She shook her head. He couldn’t have done that, she thought, feeling her eyes begin to burn. Maybe he was exaggerating, sure, but he couldn’t have been so cruel to her. Could he? Suddenly, she was no longer sure.

Cassie slowly got up, took off her nice dress, and put on her everyday clothes. Then she shut her eyes tight until the burning went away. You will not cry, she told herself sternly. You will get to the bottom of this and you’ll do it calmly. You will not let your feelings get in the way. Truth is more important than feelings. She lifted her chin, unlocked the door, and left the room.

The first thing she had to do was go to her father and talk to him face to face. She hoped she could get by unnoticed, but the rest of the group had congregated in the family room, in full sight of the front door. She sighed and quickened her pace. “I’m going to Dad’s!” she called, as she approached the door.

A pair of feet slammed against the ground. “The hell you are,” Saxon growled, as he stomped angrily toward her.

“Saxon!” cried Elle and Stuart, in unison. It didn’t stop him, though. In the next instant, her brother was at her side, looking more infuriated than she had ever seen him before.

Cassie glared up at him to cover her nerves. “You don’t get to boss me around, Harold,” she said.

“Don’t call me that, Cassandra,” he shot back.

“Bite me. I’m going to Dad’s.”

She reached for the door handle, but Saxon jammed a hip up against the door before she could open it. “I can’t believe you,” he said. “How could you hear everything Mom just said and then run off to Dad like it doesn’t matter?”

“Move,” Cassie said, not even bothering to protest that that wasn’t what she was doing.

“No.”

She tried to shove him away from the door, but he was bigger and stronger than she was, and would not budge. “Move!”

“Saxon, move out of her way,” came a soft voice. Cassie looked over her shoulder and saw that Elle had walked up to them and stood quietly, arms folded over her chest.

Cassie was shocked, but Saxon seemed even more surprised than she was. “You’re joking, right?” he asked, incredulously. “You’re just going to let her go?”

“It’s her choice,” said Elle, looking him dead in the eye. “You can’t tell her what to think.”

Saxon’s jaw tightened. He stepped away from the door and jerked it open, almost knocking Cassie over in the process. “Fine, go,” he snarled at her. “Wouldn’t want you to be late for your brainwashing.”

Saxon,” Elle cried, sounding absolutely horrified.

Cassie looked straight at Saxon, so surprised and hurt by the words she couldn’t even think how to respond. She felt the burning sensation behind her eyes again, and her vision blurred. Do not cry, she scolded herself. Don’t you dare cry in front of this insensitive asshole. Without a word, she began to walk by him, stopped, and then stomped on his foot as hard as she could.

As she ran down the front steps, she heard him yell with pain and swear, which he’d never done in front of their mother, as far as she knew. She’d really hurt him, then.

Good.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
biglenny
Oct. 27th, 2012 06:43 am (UTC)
Oh, Cassie. She really needs to know that her father is a complete jerk who doesn't deserve to be with her mother. Seeing her provoking her brother's anger is very sad. I also think Saxon could've done better than what he did once his sister left.

This is very well-written and sad. You certainly have put a good amount of effort to it.
rosefyre
Oct. 27th, 2012 11:55 am (UTC)
:( Poor all of them, really. Sigh.
scribal_goddess
Oct. 27th, 2012 05:48 pm (UTC)
Cassie. Go back and apologize to your brother for smashing his foot. NOW, child. While you're at it, you can explain to him that you need to hear both sides of the story before you can make up your mind.

Communication must run in families...
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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