23. Family

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Asher POV
"That's what happened?" The captain asks Baylor and I in disbelief.

"Yea. You can check the bank deposit for the ten grand. They, I mean Gary, paid everyone off so he wouldn't get two manslaughter charges. He was inebriated, he knew he was screwed. Baylor was the scapegoat." I defend Baylor's story and he quirks his dark eyebrow at me as he looks back down at his papers.

"At the moment Baylor, you will be detained until we can validate your story. Until then you two go home. A police officer will escort you. Baylor will be released and if the cops at the scene did in fact get paid to cover it up like you say they will be fired and held to trial. . . I'm extremely sorry for what you all have been through, my condolences. Baylor." He says and she stands numbly and follows him out of his office. Cam doesn't budge. He just sits there not doing anything, back pin straight, feet flat on the floor.


"Shh. Just. Don't say anything." He says as he continues to stare ahead and I look at him worriedly as my heartbeat quickens.

He sits as still as a corpse. Not blinking just staring.

"Cam." I say and slowly his eyes close shut.

"I abandoned you without even asking your side of the story. I never asked my moms side of the story. Now it's too late for both." He says and gets up and goes to open the door but I stop him.

"Cam I have no hard feelings against you. Gary was going to kill me if Baylor didn't leave. He knew Bay remembered what really happened. Nobody could have known that your mom didn't know. Don't put that blame on yourself." I try to tell him but he just stares down at his boots.

"Looking back it was obvious she thought Baylor was driving. She flat out said she wished Baylor was the one who died that night. Not because she hates Baylor but because she thought Baylor was the one who killed her daughter. I should have put the pieces together sooner! I should have killed him myself!" He screams and I pull him away from the door hoping the detectives outside didn't hear that.

"Cameron listen to me. Pull yourself together. Do not tear yourself apart over something out of your control! Trust me, it's a long road to recover." I tell him with as much authority as possible. Finally Cams glossy eyes look at me and I can see how broken he is.

"My mom is dead." He says as he wraps his hands in his hair and sits back down on the chair.

I know Cam. I know.


Three hours later and Baylor is finally being released. Her eyes are puffy with dark circles forming. She walks towards me blankly and walks right by me as she heads outside and gets into Cams truck. She looks awful. My heart breaks for them. I get in the driver seat and notice Cam is asleep in the passenger. Or at least his eyes are closed. I try my hardest to remember the way back to his house. He drove so frantically on the way here I could barely read streets signs. Neither Cam nor Bay say anything the entire ride despite making a few wrong turns but finally making it to their house. When I put the truck in park neither of them move.

"She was begging for me to forgive her." Baylor finally speaks as she stares out the back window.

"What?" Cam asks.

"When they shot her. She was just trying to apologize but I wouldn't let her." Baylor's voice shakes as a few tears silently roll down her cheek. Cameron just opens his door and slams it shut as he walks inside.

"She knows." I tell Bay, she looks up at me confused.

"That you love her. She knows. And you know that she loves you, hold onto that. Not what your replaying in your head right now. Okay?" She looks at me and nods her head.

"Yea. I just wish I'd known that sooner." She says and then heads inside. I take a deep breath before walking in as well.

Cameron is already inside and I go to open the truck door but stop when I see Baylor at cams front door.

She is wiping away her tears hatefully and she takes a deep breath. Then her entire body goes stiff as she freezes in her spot. She stares down at her hands and I notice the red tint still staining them. She digs through her purse and pulls out a wipe a moment later and begins scraping her hands with it furiously.

Her motions become more and more chaotic and I get out of the car as I watch her mind spin out of control as she begins sobbing hysterically unable to catch her breath. She sits down on Cams concrete steps to his porch.

"Let's go inside and wash up Bay." I say gently and she shakes her head no as she continues scrubbing her hands. Timidly I put my hands over hers and hold them. She stops moving and let's her head fall into my chest as she continues to sob. I wash the rest of the blood from her hands while she calms herself down.

Fifteen minutes pass before she calms herself to hiccups while she continues to lay her head on my chest. I hold her in my arms as I stare out at the road and back down at her.

A few more minutes pass and she squeezes her arms around me and snuggles her cheek deeper into my chest.

"I love you." She tells me softly and I squeeze her back as she looks up at me.

"I am glad you've figured that out." I smile down at her and she lets out a small laugh. We sit there a moment longer in each other's arms.

"Does it look like I've been crying?" She asks, and I gently push a wet piece of hair from her face and wipe away the residue of a traveling tear.

"She won't be able to tell." I assure her, knowing who she's putting the strong face on for. Bays eyebrows furrow together as we stare at each other for a moment and I smile warmly at her.

I stand up and offer her my hand and she takes it and I pull her up. She closes her eyes, inhales deeply through her nose, and exhales through her mouth. She does this a few more times before opening her clear brown eyes and putting on a smile as she opens the door.

"Mommy!" Ashlor yells as soon as she hears the door and I can hear her footsteps running towards us.

"Mia!" Baylor yells back with equal enthusiasm and a giant smile across her face. Ashlor jumps into Bays arms and Bay picks her up and they both hug each other. I walk past them and see that Bays eyes are closed as she holds Ashlor in the embrace.

"Daddy!" My heart stops from her words and her arms jump in my direction as she leaps towards me. My heart beats back up joyfully as I hold my stunningly gorgeous daughter. A tear slips down my cheek before I realize it was coming and her small chestnut eyebrows scrunch together in confusion.

"What's wrong daddy? Mommy likes it when I give her hugs?" I let out a small laugh as well as Bay. I look over at her and see her eyes have become glossy, only this time for the same reason as mine.

"I'm just really happy I'm here with you guys that's all." I tell her and Bay walks over to us and we all three begin to hug. Bay starts tickling me and Ashlor and she screams in delight and tells me to save us.

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