Fury (Rosewood High #6) by Tracy Lorraine

1





Ashton





Mom cuts me a seething look as she pulls to a stop at an intersection.

“I’m sorry, okay.” It’s so cold in here with a broken heater that my breath comes out in white clouds as I talk.

One of her brows lift. Disappointment comes off her in waves and I hate it. She’s the only one whose opinion I care about. The only one I try to do better for. Hell knows she deserves it after all the shit I’ve put her through.

I promised her things would be different after I got back from Rosewood after Halloween, and I truly believed it would, but then she happened.

Things changed the night of that party. I took things that weren’t meant for me, and I’ve been living with the consequences—the memories—ever since.

I never should have touched her, let alone allow myself to go as far as I did. And I really, really shouldn’t have craved more so badly that the only thing I could do was leave.

I knew the second her orgasm rocked through her that we couldn’t be under the same roof, let alone in the bedroom next door to each other. Everything about her was too much of a temptation.

I’d told her I wanted to ruin her for ruining my life, but it turned out there was only one person whose life was turned upside down after visiting my stepsister.

My fingers wrap around the edge of Mom’s passenger seat, my nails digging into the worn leather as she pulls away slowly, the road like a sheet of ice beneath the tires.

“You promised me, Ash. You promised me that things were going to change. Yet here I am picking you up from the station. Things are getting worse, not better, Son.”

I blow out a long breath.

“I know, Mom. But really, they had no reason to arrest me.”

“They said you were dealing.” Her anger is palpable. I’ve done a lot of shit over the years, but this is my first real scrape with the law. And I certainly wasn’t dealing.

“But I wasn’t,” I answer, exasperated from giving the same argument for the past fuck knows how long. “I hadn’t even smoked any today.”

“Today? Ash, you shouldn’t smoke any day. You’re supposed to be an athlete.”

“Hardly,” I scoff. “I played football at school, Mom. I’m hardly an athlete.”

“Well, you could play at college if you actually applied yourself.”

“I’m not going to college. We can’t afford it,” I argue like our financial situation is the only thing stopping me. My awful GPA and the fact I don’t have enough credits to graduate might also have something to do with it.

“I don’t care, Ash. I want you to have everything.”

“And I want us to get out of our shitty apartment and live a decent life.”

“Just stop, Ash. Stop trying to fix everything.”

“What’s wrong with me wanting us to have a better life? One where you don’t have to sleep with a sweatshirt on and turn to a bottle or two every night. And don’t even think about arguing, I know exactly how much you’ve been drinking.”

“It’s not like that.”

“Is it not? You need to let him go, Mom. It’s been years. He’s moved on, married... happy.”

“Enough,” she screams, her face going beet red with anger. “That’s enough. It’s not... shit,” she squeals as the car jolts to the right as she hits a patch of ice. Her arms tense to try to control it, but she can’t. Two seconds later the tires leave the road and we’re falling down the bank off the side of the road.

“Mom,” I cry as the car tumbles.

“Ashton.” The fear in her voice is something I’ll never forget for as long as I live, assuming I get out of this.

I have no idea how long the car continues moving, time seems to grind to a halt before the world goes black.





“Son.” His voice is like knives as it fills the silent room around me.

He is the last person I want to see or talk to right now. I knew he was coming, the nurse told me they’d called him the second I was admitted. I’m still a minor. I need a parent here with me.

I’m sitting on a hospital bed with my thighs tucked up against my chest and my head on my knees in my attempt to process what’s happened in the past few hours.

I feel empty in a way I’ve never experienced before and utterly exhausted. But it’s the least of how I should feel after what I went through.