Hi everyone!!! The next chapters are up for the lost story, as Riana finds out about Britney and Isaac, as well as run into some trouble of her own.

Four

Cheryl arrived inside the student lounge and headed straight to the coffeehouse. She started to stand in line, but noticed Chris sitting outside on the patio. She watched him while he was busily reading the Sports section of the newspaper. He looked up and smiled.

“Hey. I didn’t expect to see you here.”

“I know. I had to get away from my place for a while. Mind if I sit down?”

“No, not at all,” Chris said.

Cheryl smiled.

“You’re reading the Sports section?”

“Yeah. I had to do something. My roommate is driving me crazy. I don’t think I can stay with him for the rest of the semester.”

“What is he doing that making you annoyed?”

“Where should I start? First, he’s in the bathroom for a long period of time looking at himself in the mirror. He eats up all the food and he’s interrupting my sleep by bringing a different girl into the room every night. This was all in the first week we moved in together.”

“Wow, sounds rough. At least you’re not staying with three other girls in a two bedroom apartment. It only been a couple of days and we’re already at each other’s throats. Now I found out that my cousin’s best friend been messing around with her boyfriend for two months. I want to tell her but I know it will kill her.”

“Why you didn’t? It will hurt her but she needs to know the truth.”

“I know, but her friend gave me some story that her and her boyfriend will tell her soon. I don’t know what to do.” Cheryl said. She put her head in her hands and took a deep breath. Chris reached out, putting a hand on her shoulder.

“Can I give you some advice? You do what’s right. You know your cousin better than anyone so you should be able to know what she can take. She will thank you for this. As far as her friend goes, she was never a friend to begin with if she’s sleeping with her boyfriend. That’s something me and Shawn never done. And never will do.”

Cheryl nodded to what Chris advised. She knew what she had to do.

“I wasn’t out of line was I?”

“No, not at all. In fact, I think that’s what I needed to hear. Speaking of Shawn, why you and him are not roommates?”

“I wish we were but he already have one. His brother. They got an apartment together when Shawn graduated high school. They asked me to move in with them but I thought that would have been a little overcrowded.”

“I know what you mean.” Cheryl said, smiling.

“You want to grab something to eat? Maybe talk some more?” Chris asked.

“Sure, I would like that.”

The two got up from the table and walk out onto the quad.

***

Isaac was parking his car in front of Riana’s apartment when he notices Britney sitting on the sidewalk near the apartment. He gets out of his car and goes towards Britney. Britney looked up, revealing her swollen eyes and a look of disgust on her face.

“What the hell happened to you?” he asked.

“She knows about us.” Britney whispered.

“Riana knows.”

“No. Cheryl.”

Isaac gave a perplexed look at Britney as he sat down beside her.

“What are we going to do? She could tell Riana anytime now.”

“But she didn’t. Why she didn’t go and tell her after she found out?”

“Because I told her not to. I said we were going to tell her.”

Isaac sighed as he stared at the row of cars in the parking lot.

“That’s good then that she’s not going to tell.”

“No it’s not. She’s waiting for us to say something. If we don’t then she will spill. Why would she withhold information like that from her cousin?”

“You’re right.”

“We have to tell her. If we don’t this whole thing will blow up in our faces.” Britney said.

***
Riana walked around the living room impatiently as she checked her watch. Isaac was supposed to have come by so they could go out to dinner. She wanted to confront him about his weird behavior. But of course, he’s late.

“Where is he?” she said to herself.

Ever since she returned from her vacation, she has been noticing how distance Isaac been towards her and why he hasn’t been spending time with her. She walked over to the window and noticed Isaac and Britney in the parking lot. Isaac was hugging Britney while she was crying into
his chest.

“Why is she crying?”

She was about to walk to the door when her cell phone rang.

“Hello.”

“Hey, it’s Shawn.”

“Shawn, hey; what’s up?”

“I had this great idea for our project and I didn’t want to forget it so I was thinking would you like to go out to dinner so we could discuss it.”

“I would love to, but I already have plans. Maybe I could give you a call later tonight so we could talk.”

“Okay, cool.”

“Talk to you later.”

“Yeah, bye.”

Riana ended the call and was heading to the door when her phone started to ring again.

“What now?”

She answered the phone with a slight attitude.

“Yes.”

“Are you okay?” Cheryl asked.

“Yeah, what’s up?”

“I need to talk to you. It’s really important.”

“Can it wait? Isaac’s here and he’s with Britney and I was going to see what was going on.”

“That’s why I’m calling you. It’s about Isaac and Britney.”

“Can you please tell me what’s going on? I need to know now.” Riana asked in an irritated tone.

“I just found out that Britney and Isaac has been involved for two months. They been sleeping together since the time we left on vacation. I’m so sorry Ri. I didn’t want you to find out this way.”

Riana couldn’t believe what she just heard. She slowly sat down on the couch and her cell phone fell to the floor. Tears started to stream down her face as she looked outside the window and watched Britney and Isaac outside on the sidewalk.

Monica walked into the living room with Donnell behind her. She goes over to Riana and put an arm around her.

“Ri, what’s wrong? Who’s on the phone?”

Riana didn’t even notice Monica was beside her as she was crying violently. Monica picked up Riana’s phone to find out who she was talking to.

“Hello. Is someone still there?”

“Yeah Monica; it’s Cheryl.”

“What happened? I was trying to ask Riana but she can’t stop crying.”

“I just told her something about Britney and Isaac. I’m on my way home.”

Before Monica could ask what she said, Cheryl hung up the phone.

“What’s going on?” Donnell asked.

“Cheryl hung up so I don’t know.”

In a sudden rush, Riana headed towards the door. She opened it wide, causing the door to hit the wall. She ran straight to Britney and Isaac with a fit of rage. Monica looked at Donnell and the two ran after Riana.

Britney looked up and noticed Riana coming towards her.

“She knows.” Britney said. She tried to walk away, but Riana was too quick.

“You bitch!” Riana exclaimed. She grabbed Britney by her hair and swung her around to face her. She punched her with all her strength. Britney fell down on the dewy green grass in pain.

“You didn’t think I would find out? You fucking asshole! To think I was in love with you. How could you do this to me?” Riana yelled at Isaac.

Monica and Donnell were both watching the scene unfold as Monica walked over to Britney to help her up.

“Listen, we didn’t want you to find out like this. We were going to tell you everything when the time was right.” Isaac said.

“When was that going to be? I can’t believe this!” Riana screamed. She went over to Isaac and started to hit him on the chest. Isaac tried to move Riana away from him but couldn’t.

“Girl, calm down!” he yelled.

Just as he was finally able to restrain Riana from him, she started back hitting him again. Donnell ran over to Riana and pulled her away from Isaac.

“Why are you upset with Britney and Isaac?” Monica yelled to Riana.

“That bastard and that bitch have been sleeping together for the past two months, that’s why! So was that where you were today after class, fucking my man!”

Monica looked at Britney and Isaac in total amazement. Her dark brown eyes were filled with shock and sadness.

“Why would you two do that? What’s wrong with you two?”

“You’re a fine person to talk.” Isaac said.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Donnell asked while getting in Isaac’s face.

“Stop it! He’s not worth it.” Monica said.

Britney goes up to Riana with a smug look.

“Matter of fact, I was fucking your man. Over and over and over again. I had to since you
wasn’t.”

“That’s low Britney.” Monica said.

Riana tried to go after Britney again, but Donnell grabbed her by her waist.

Cheryl and Chris ran over to the scene expecting the worse. Once the two arrived so did the rest of the apartment complex, as a mob of spectators were outside curious of the entire situation escalating.

“You had to open your big mouth. You couldn’t hold it in could you?” Isaac yelled at Cheryl.

“Don’t blame me because you got caught. Riana deserves to be with someone better than you.”

“You know what; you two not worth going to jail over. I’m done.” Riana said. She tried to pull out of Donnell’s grasp but couldn’t.

“You can let go of me now.”

“Promise you won’t do anything?”

“Promise,”

Donnell let Riana go as she calmly walked away from him. She looked at Isaac and Britney with a disgusted look.

“Now that I think about it you two deserve each other.”

She hit Britney again, causing her to fall back down on the green grass.

Monica looked at the both Riana and Britney speechless with the whole situation. Donnell went over to her and gave her a hug.

“Things will never be the same again.”

Riana walked over to her Dodge Caliber when Cheryl and Chris ran behind her.

“Where you going? You shouldn’t be by yourself.” Cheryl said.

“Don’t worry, I’ll be fine.”

“Cheryl’s right; you definitely shouldn’t be behind the wheel.” Chris said.

“You were with Shawn at the club right?”

“Yeah, I’m his friend Chris.”

“Could you tell where Shawn stays? I need to go there.”

“Don’t do this, Ri. Being with another guy is not going to solve your problems.”

“It not what you think. Shawn called earlier about our Journalism project. I was going by there so we can discuss it.”

Cheryl looked over at Chris. He nodded his head.

“I’ll give you Shawn’s address.”

***
After the unforgettable incident outside, Britney, Monica, Donnell, and Isaac were going back inside the apartment. Isaac was walking in when Monica stops him at the door.

“You can’t come in.”

“Why not?”

“I don’t think it’s a good time to.”

“He can come in.” Britney said.

Monica sighed as Isaac walked into the apartment.

“I’m still in shock over you two. How did you keep it a secret? Even I didn’t know.”

“There’s a lot of things you can keep in the dark. It just the idea of getting caught is the
question.” Isaac said. He glanced at Monica with a stony expression.

Monica rolled her eyes at Isaac and walked over to the couch.

“I’m sorry Mon for not telling you but I know you would have told Riana about it. Besides, it seems like lately everyone has a secret to tell.” Britney said.

“I know it was wrong for us to get involved, but something just click between us and we couldn’t resist. Now that Riana knows, we don’t have to hide it anymore.”

“That may be true, but you hurt a friend in the process. Have you thought about what this is doing to Riana? She really cares about the both of you; and Brit, you two been friends for so long. Why put her through this much pain?”

“Who’s to say that Riana not seeing someone on the side? She’s been pretty off lately since we went to the club on Friday.” Britney said.

“Whatever Britney.” Monica said.

“You two will be together now, but just to let you know Isaac is not welcome here anymore.”

“Why not? He’s my man now.”

“Yeah, but this is our place and you have to respect that. If you don’t then there’s the door.”

Monica said. She goes into the room she shared with Britney and slammed the door.

Donnell looked at the two and shook his head. He goes towards Monica’s room and closed the
door.

Britney turned to Isaac and smiled.

“Well it’s over now. We can be together.” She said. She put her arms around him and gave him a hug. Isaac looked at the bare wall and sighed.

That’s what you think.

***
Riana walked up to Shawn’s apartment and started to pound on the door.

During the drive over, she was hesitating on whether she should stop by.

Cheryl is right. I shouldn’t have come.

As soon as she was about to leave, Shawn opened the door out of breath. Apparently he was working out because he was only wearing a pair of basketball shorts and had a towel draped over his right shoulder. Riana started to bite her lip while staring at Shawn’s sweaty body. The thoughts she was thinking right now was only making things even more complicated.

“Hey, what are you doing here?” Shawn asked in surprise. “How did you know where I stayed?”

“Your friend Chris gave me your address. I see you’re busy. Maybe I should go.”

“No; come in. I was just lifting some weights. Just let me freshen up.”

Riana smiled as she stepped into Shawn’s apartment. As he ran into the bathroom to wash up,

Riana walked over to the leather couch and sat down. From the looks of his place it seemed as if no one stayed there. In the living room there were only the couch and a flat screen TV.

But it’s comfortable.

Shawn walked back into the living room wearing a pair of shorts and a blue T-shirt. He looked at Riana and realized she been crying.

“Is something wrong?”

“No, not really. I just needed someone to talk to.”

“And you chose me? You barely know me.”

“I know, but you were the first person that came to mind.”

Shawn looked at Riana. “I thought you had plans tonight. Did something happen with that?”

Riana looked at the blank TV screen and began to cry. Shawn sighed as he draped his arm around her.

“Calm down. Whatever it is it will be okay.”

“Nothing will ever be the same again.”

“Whatever it is, it can’t be that bad.”

“Yes it is.” Riana said in between sobs.

“Calm down.” Shawn said. He goes into the kitchen to retrieve a glass of water. He walked over to Riana and she took it from him. The water calmed her but she was still was shaking.

“Whatever it is must have made you really upset. You’re shaking. You want to talk about it?”

Riana wiped her tears with the back of her hand and took several deep breaths before speaking.

“I just found out my best friend and my boyfriend has been sleeping together for the past two months. I can’t believe my best friend would do this to me. After all I have done for her and this is how she repays me.”

“Wow. Sorry to hear that.”

“I knew something was going on with my boyfriend. Why I’m saying my boyfriend; my ex-boyfriend. I noticed something changed in him when I returned from vacation; but I would have never thought it was this. They probably wished I never came back so they wouldn’t have to sneak around. Well, they don’t have to now. They can be together and live happily ever after in hell.”

“You don’t mean that.”

“Yeah I do. At this point they can go to hell.”

“Look at me. Your friend and your ex doesn’t deserve someone like you. I haven’t known you that long, but from what I can see you are a sweet and nice person. If they hurt you like that then they don’t deserve to be in your life. You don’t need them.”

Instead of feeling encouraged, Riana began to cry again.

“Don’t cry Riana.” Shawn said as he hugged her.

“I don’t want to go back there. I can’t.”

“You can stay here if you want. We could watch TV; maybe work on our project.”

Riana smiled. “Thanks, but I don’t feel like watching TV let alone work on the project.”

“Then what you want to do? If you’re hungry, I could cook us something.”

“I’m not hungry.”

“So what you want to do?”

Riana gave Shawn an innocent stare as she laid a hand on his chest.

Shawn began to become a little nervous by Riana’s gesture.

She is so beautiful. But I can’t do this. Not now.

“Riana, you’re not thinking straight right now. Maybe we should work on our project. I could tell you what my idea is.”

“Shut up please and let me talk. Ever since I’ve seen you at the club there was something inside that wanted to know more about you. I tried to deny my attraction to you but I can’t now.”

She looked at Shawn and starts to kiss him on his lips. The two start to kiss slowly as Riana moved her hands down Shawn’s back. Shawn tried to resist his temptation for Riana but he couldn’t withstand it any longer. Their kiss progressed to a force of desire that was unmanageable. Shawn watched as Riana removed her shirt and bra.

He suddenly became aroused by her sitting in front of him completely topless.

“Make love to me.” she said.

Shawn was taken aback by Riana’s proposal. He didn’t know whether to take her right there or just control his urges. He really like Riana and he don’t know if he can live with himself if he took it there with her.

He sat up and started to moan.

“I can’t do this.”

“Why not? If you think you would be forcing me you won’t be. I want you and I know you want
me too. I can see it in your eyes.”

“I do. Believe me I do, but we just met and you’re on the rebound. If I was any other guy I would have took you into my room and made love to you but I’m not that type of guy.”

Riana gave a weak smile and put back on her shirt.

“I just made an ass out of myself.” She said while getting up from the couch.

“You didn’t.”

“Yes I did! You must think I’m easy or something.”

“I didn’t say that.”

“You might as well have. Just leave me alone.” Riana said. She grabbed her bra and purse that were both on the floor and headed to the door.

“Where are you going?”

“Like you care where I go. Just go back to what you were doing?”

“At least stay a little while until you calm down.”

“Bye Shawn.” Riana said. She goes to the door and opened it.

Shawn watched as Riana walked out the door and slams it. He turned around and sighed.

“I have to follow her.”

He snatched his keys from the kitchen counter and goes to the door.

Five
After being completely humiliated in Shawn’s apartment, Riana quickly got in to her Dodge Caliber and started the ignition. She reversed out of the parking space she was parked in and sped out towards the street. While driving, she let out a frustrating scream.

“I can’t believe I made an ass out of myself!”

Whatever thoughts of her and Shawn being together were completely gone now. She probably can’t look at him anyone let alone talk to him.

“What am I thinking? I just broke up with Isaac. I can’t be thinking about anyone right now.”

As she was driving, she headed towards the ramp to the freeway. She had to go somewhere to clear her head on all the things that has happened today.
“And this is just the beginning of the semester.”

Shawn was a few cars behind Riana as he goes up the ramp to the freeway.

“Where is she going?”

Riana took a sharp turn and headed onto the off ramp towards downtown.

Shawn realized that Riana was going to the downtown off ramp and hurriedly turned towards the exit. He almost collided into a car on the way to the exit. The driver began to blow his horn furiously.

As Riana goes off the ramp, she made a left at the light and another left at a bar near downtown. She found the closest parking space available and turned off the engine. She got out the car and goes inside. Shawn pulled up into the bar parking lot and sighed.

“She chose here of all places.”

As soon as he was about to get out of his car, he felt a vibration in his left pocket. He realized it was his cell phone. He pulled it out and noticed it was Chris calling.

“Why did you give Riana my address?”

“She said she needed to talk to you about your class project. Did she come by?”

“She came by alright. She practically threw herself at me. After I rejected her, she got upset and storm out my place. I follow her near downtown and now she’s at some bar. I’m really worried about her. Let me go so I can keep an eye on her.”

“Shawn, where are you?”

Shawn hung up the phone and put it back into his pocket.

Chris hung up his phone and sighed.

“Where is he?” Cheryl asked.

“He didn’t say. All I know is that he followed Riana to a bar near downtown.”

“I think I know where they are.”

“How?”

“It called the Z Lounge. We went there before and that’s the only bar that’s near downtown.”

“Let’s go.”

Chris and Cheryl went towards Chris’s car to find Riana.

***
Riana walked into Z Lounge and headed straight to the bar. She sat down and sighed. The bartender walked over to Riana and smiled.

“What will it be pretty lady?”

“I’ll have a Cosmopolitan please.” She timidly replied.

As the bartender walked off, Riana looked around the bar with a look of guilt and shyness. Riana is not a big drinker but she figured after today’s events she deserved a drink or two.

The bartender came back to Riana with her drink.

“Thanks.”

She took the drink and placed it to her lips. As she placed her glass down on the napkin on the counter she noticed someone was staring at her.

Don’t come over here.

The guy walked over to her and smiled.

“Hi. How are you?”

Riana glanced at the guy as she took another sip of her drink.

“I had better days.” She answered with an attitude.

“So what’s a beautiful woman like you sitting all alone at a bar?”

Riana looked at him and started to laugh.

“If you think that’s going to make me talk to you, then you though wrong.”

“Sorry I bothered you. I just noticed that you looked sad and wanted to see if you were okay.”

The guy said. He started to head towards a table when Riana stopped him.

“Wait, I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have been so rude to you. I had a really bad day today.”

“Sorry to hear that. Maybe I can make you feel better.”

Riana laughed. “I doubt it. Nothing will.”

“You never know. I could try. I’m Will.” The guy said as he put his hand out towards Riana.

“Riana.” she said while accepting Will’s handshake.

“Would you like another drink? I don’t mind getting you one.”

“No thanks. I’m driving so one’s my limit.”

“Oh come on; one more wouldn’t hurt.”

Riana looked at her glass then at Will. “Sure.”

“Cool. You had a Cosmo, right?”

“Right,”

“I’ll be back.” Will said.

As Will tried to get the bartender’s attention, Riana looked over to the door and saw Shawn sitting at a table nearby.

What is he doing here?

Shawn stared at Riana and started to get up from the table. As he was walking over to the bar, a woman came up to Shawn.

“Hey, Shawn. How are you?” the woman asked. She goes up to Shawn and threw her arms around him. Shawn looked at the girl in utter surprise.

“Look, this is not the right time.” He said. He removed himself from the girl’s embrace. As he was walking away, the girl grabbed Shawn’s arm.

“I’m sorry but who are you?”

“You don’t remember me? It’s Laurie; the girl who gave you the best night of your life. I guess you wouldn’t remember since you didn’t have the nerve to call.”

Shawn looked at Laurie and sighed.

***
Riana looked at Shawn and turned her head back to the bar.

So you wouldn’t sleep with me, but you did with her!

Will came back to Riana with a Cosmopolitan in his hand.

“Here you go.” He said, handing her the drink.

“Thanks.”

Will gave Riana a deceiving glance as she took the drink to her lips.

Drink up baby because this is your lucky night.

Riana tipped the glass, drinking the alcohol as if it was a glass of water. She placed the glass down on the counter and smiled at Will.

That’s a good girl.

***
Shawn looked at Laurie with an aggravated expression.

“I remember you now! Why don’t I give you a call tonight and you can talk your pretty little head off all night, okay.”

“Okay.” Laurie excitedly said.

“Whatever.” He said. He goes over to the bar when Cheryl and Chris walk in. They saw Shawn and headed over to him.

“Shawn.” Cheryl called out.

Shawn turned around to see the two.

“Have you seen her?”

“Yeah, she’s at the bar talking to some punk. I’ve been keeping an eye on her the whole time.”

“Why haven’t you went over to her and got her out of here?”

“I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

“If you won’t I will.” Cheryl said. She was about to go to the bar when Chris grabbed her arm.

“Let go of me.”

“And what good will it do if you go over there? It will only make things worse.”

Cheryl pulled away from Chris and goes to the nearest table to sit down.

“We should do something though. Ri is vulnerable right now. She’s not in the right state of mind.”

“I know that, that’s why I followed her here and been watching her since. Nothing happened yet, but if something does, I’ll take care of it.” Shawn commented.

“Riana is grown so I’m pretty sure she can take care of herself.” Chris said.

Cheryl shook her head at the two and looked over at the bar.

***
Thirty minutes later and Riana was still talking to Will. The two has been talking about everything from school to their favorite foods. As Riana looked at Will, she started to feel a little light-headed.

“What’s going on?”

She began to look around the bar but everything looked blurry.

“Why is everything fuzzy?”

“Is something wrong?” Will asked with a concern look on his face.

Riana looked at Will. Even he was starting to look weird.

“Suddenly, I don’t feel so good.”

She put her hand on her forehead and realized she was sweating.

“You put something in my drink.”

“What? You’re crazy.”

“I was feeling fine until the last drink I had. You drugged me.”

Shawn looked over at the scene and went up to the two. Cheryl and Chris gave each other nervous looks and headed over to the bar.

“What’s going on?” Shawn asked.

“None of your business.” Will impatiently replied.

“I think it is.” Shawn said while stepping in front of Will.

“I don’t feel good.” Riana said. “He put something in my drink.”

“She’s lying! She was drunk before I even talked to her.”

Riana tried to get up from her seat, but when she did, she fell into Shawn. Shawn caught her before she fell to the ground.

“Riana!” Cheryl yelled. She ran over to Shawn and took Riana from him.

“I’m calling the police.” The bartender said. He went over to the phone behind the counter and dialed 911.

“This is a joke! She was drunk before I talked to her. It not my problem she’s a tease!”

Shawn was about to hit him, but Chris held him back.

“Nah man, let me.”

He went up to Will and punch him across his jaw. Will fell backwards causing his head to fall on a chair nearby. He fell on the ground and was knocked out cold.

“Thanks man.” Shawn said.

Cheryl looked at Riana with a scared look on her face.

“I don’t feel good.” Riana weakly said.

She looked at Cheryl as her eyes started to slowly close.

“Riana! Riana, don’t do this!” Cheryl exclaimed.

Shawn looked over at Cheryl and Riana and ran over to the two. He took Riana from Cheryl and picked her up.

“We have to go to the hospital.”

“I’ll stay here for the police.” Chris said.

“Go. I’ll take care of everything.” The bartender said.

“Let’s go.” Shawn said.

And the three went out the door.

***
Britney was in her room looking at a photo album she had on her nightstand. After having a long talk with Isaac about their new relationship, Isaac claimed he had something important to do and stormed out the apartment it was on fire. As she skimmed through the photos, she looked at how happy she, Monica and Riana was during their high school graduation and part of their freshman year in college. A tear started to fall down Britney’s cheek as she closed the album and put it to her chest.

“We were so happy then. Now I ruined things between all of us. This was a huge mistake.”

“I agree.” Monica said while standing at the door.

Britney looked up and placed the album back on her nightstand.

Monica walked into the room and sat on her bed facing Britney’s.

“I don’t get you. I mean why would you do this to your best friend?”

“That’s the question that keeps popping in my head every time I was with Isaac and even now. I can’t answer why I did it: I guess I was in love with him. You knew I liked him before Riana got with him and she knew that, but instead of respecting my feelings, she went after him anyway.”

“So you felt it was okay to pursue something with him because you had a crush on him? Even if you did and Riana decided to date him does not mean you destroy your long term friendship for a man! You really messed up and I don’t think Riana will ever forgive you.”

“You don’t think I know that! I think about that all the time. I know I screwed up and it’s tearing me apart, but I can’t turn back time now. I’m hoping that things will work out for everyone. Especially for Isaac and me.”
“Are you kidding me? I really did like Isaac because I thought he was a great guy, but to come between two friends that are like sisters to each other is plain trifling. As you can see he didn’t care about you two being friends. All he cared about was what he could get out of both of you and he succeed.”

“I know I’ve done some things that were hurtful, but what about you? Has a certain incident just disappeared from your mind? You cheated on Donnell with a guy you met at a club. So don’t come in here acting like you’re so innocent when you’re doing dirt too.”

“I screwed up too, I’ll admit that; but at least I didn’t hurt my best friend in the process.”

“Donnell’s not your best friend? Or he’s just someone you feel comfortable with? I know that you slept with him too today. When are you going to learn Monica? Donnell have been so nice to you since you two been together. He has put up so much shit from you it is ridiculous! After all the people you cheated with, he still took you back. You know what he’s trying to do now and that’s saving up for his own place. Instead of being supportive, you go sleep with someone you hardly knew.”

Monica glanced down at the necklace Donnell brought for her with a look of sadness.

“I wanted to tell him today about Malcolm, but he surprised me with this necklace. How could I tell him I had an one- night stand when he was thinking of me while saving for his dream? He took the money out of his savings to give me something that I don’t deserve. You don’t think I feel terrible over something I messed up on! Because I do and it feels like shit! And the worse part of it all is that I haven’t heard from Malcolm since that night. Basically, I was used that night and I could lose someone that is really important to me.” Monica said through tears.

Britney looked at Monica and gave her a hug. The two were hugging each other and crying at the same time.

“We both messed up, huh?” Britney asked while crying.

“Big time.”

The two continued to weep when Monica’s cell phone began to ring. Monica went over to the desk and answered it.

“Hello.”

“Monica, its Cheryl. I have some bad news about Riana.”

“What’s wrong?” Cheryl asked in a frantic tone.

“I’m at the hospital with two of our friends. We found Riana at a bar with some loser and he put something in her drink. We believed it was date rape drug.”

“Oh no!” Monica gasped.

“We don’t know anything yet as far as what it was, but we think with the combination of the drug and alcohol that it doesn’t look good.”

“Where are you?”

“Penbrook Memorial.”

“I’m on my way.” Monica said. She hurriedly hung up the phone and grabbed her keys from the desk.

Britney looked at Monica with fear in her hazel-colored eyes.

“What’s wrong with Ri?”

“She’s in the hospital.”

“I’m going with you.” Britney said as she was putting on her shoes.

“I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

“Why not? No matter what happened Ri is still my friend. I still care about her.”

“I know, but this is a bad situation right now. I don’t think it would be right if you were there. I’ll call you when I hear anything.”

Monica went towards the hallway and to the front door. Britney stared at the window in total disarray.

“Monica’s wrong. I have to be there.”

She grabbed her cell phone from her bed and dialed a number. She waited until the person on the other end answered the phone.

“Hello.”

“Could you come by? I have to go to Penbrook Memorial.”

***
Cheryl, Shawn and Chris were in the waiting room at Penbrook Memorial awaiting news on Riana. Chris looked at Cheryl as she eagerly put her hands together and was rocking back and forth in her chair. Chris took Cheryl‘s hands and put them in his. Cheryl glanced at Chris and took a shallow breath.

“Should you call Riana’s parents and let them know what going on?” Chris asked.

“I would, but I don’t want them to worry too much. Besides, it not much they can do. This has been an unusual day. We just met this morning and with everything that has happened today.”

Chris smiled. “This has been an eventful day, but that doesn’t mean a thing to me. I still want to get to know you better. I think you are a great person.”

Cheryl blushed. “Thanks. I’m just so worry about Ri. I mean this is not like her.”

“People will do the unthinkable when they are hurting. Just believe that she will pull through this.”

“I’m going to the chapel to pray.” Cheryl said while getting up from her seat.

“I’ll come with you.”

Cheryl waited for Chris to stand. They looked over at Shawn who was sitting on the couch with his head down.

“Shawn, we’ll be back. We’re going to the chapel to pray.” Chris said.

Shawn looked up with a restless expression. He moved his head to acknowledge them as the two left the waiting room.

He decided he needed to move around, so he got off of the couch and started to pace back and forth near the stretch corridor.

“If I just went to her sooner.” He murmured.

Just the thought of Riana unconscious at the bar only made Shawn more upset than before. He looked at the wall and punched it with his right fist.
Monica and Donnell walked into the waiting room to witness Shawn punching the wall.

“Shawn.” Monica said in a surprise tone.

“Monica. You know Riana?”

“Yeah, she’s one of my best friends. I didn’t know you knew her.”

“We actually just met. Hey, Donnell.”

“What’s up Shawn?”

“Have you heard anything?”

“No, not yet.”

Britney walked into the waiting room with Isaac in toll. She was really nervous with the idea of bringing Isaac with her, but she needed him there.

He is my boyfriend. If anyone doesn’t like it, so be it.

Monica and Donnell looked at Britney and Isaac wondering why was they there.

“I don’t believe this.” Monica said.

Shawn looked at the two and then at Donnell.

“The friend and the ex?”

“Bingo.” Donnell said.

Monica went over to Britney and grabbed her arm. She escorted Britney out to the corridor.

“I told you to stay at home. And why did you bring Isaac? He’s the last person who should be here.”

“And who is the guy in the waiting room; Riana’s new boyfriend?”

“He’s a friend. That’s not the point though. You two shouldn’t be here and you knew that. You have to go.”

“I’m not leaving until I know Riana is okay.” Britney said. She gave Monica a fuming stare as she walked back into the waiting room.

“Please don’t let anything else happen tonight. I think we had enough drama today.” Monica prayed as she followed Britney back into the waiting room.

Cheryl and Chris walked back in as well to see Britney and Isaac sitting down.

“Why are you two here? Haven’t you both done enough?” Cheryl yelled.

“It’s not our faults what happened to Riana. She should know right from wrong by now.” Isaac said.

“Son of a bitch!” Cheryl cried. She was about to go over to Isaac, but Chris held her back.

“You better contain her; she’s being dramatic right now. Everyone knows Riana have personal issues.”

Shawn walked over to Isaac with a threatening look on his face.

“You did Riana a favor by cheating on her. She doesn’t need slime like you in her life.”

“Well, well, if it isn’t Shawn Walker. What are you doing here? Let me guess, is it because you have a thing for Riana? I’ve seen you at the club pushing your way on her. I’ll tell you one thing, good luck hitting that.”

Shawn looked at Isaac and punched him across the face. Isaac fell down on the linoleum floor.

Shawn looked at his hand and realized it was covered with blood.

“You stupid you know that!” Shawn said.

Isaac got up and went towards Shawn with his right fist balled up. He decked him in the face. The two fell on the floor striking each other.

“Stop it! You two are in a hospital!” Monica yelled.

The two continued to fight when Chris and Donnell ran over to them to break up the fight before security arrived.

“Do you two have any sense? My cousin is in the hospital while you two are fighting like animals!” Cheryl said.

Isaac glazed at Shawn with a hatred look. Shawn looked at Isaac ready to pick up where he left off.

“Sorry Cheryl.” Shawn said. He headed to the window to stare out at the parking lot.

Cheryl went over to Isaac.

“You and your whore need to leave. You have no business being here. You are the reason why my cousin is here!”

Isaac looked at Cheryl and shook his head.

“Cheryl’s right. Please leave.” Monica said.

“Monica.” Britney cried.

“I’m sorry Britney, but I told you not to come. You’re only causing trouble.”

Shawn went back to the group and looked at Britney and Isaac.

“You heard them. Leave or we can get security to escort you out.”

Britney went over to a chair nearby and folded her arms across her chest.

“I guess you have to call security.”

“Fine with me,”

“Forget it. Let them stay. Maybe they need to be here.” Cheryl said.

Isaac went over to Britney and sat down beside her. Cheryl looked at Shawn and smiled.

“Even though it was bad timing, thanks for punching that jerk.”

“Glad to do it.”

A doctor walked into the waiting room with a clipboard in hand.

He looked at the group with a look no one could figure out.

“I wonder if it’s bad.” Monica said.

“Is my cousin going to be okay?” asked Cheryl.

The doctor looked at Cheryl and smiled.

“She’s going to be fine.”

“Thank God.” Cheryl said. Chris looked at her and gave her a hug.

Shawn looked up to the ceiling to give thanks as well.

“Was it the date rape drug?”

“We were able to determine the drug that was used and it was in fact Rohypnol. Your cousin is lucky tonight. With such a powerful drug and alcohol combined it could have killed her.”

“Well thank goodness she’s okay. Can we see her?”

“I’m afraid not. Visiting hours are over now. Besides she’s resting comfortably. I would like to keep her overnight to observe her condition as well as run additional tests.”

“Thank you so much.” Cheryl said.

“No problem.”

Once the doctor walked out of the waiting room, Cheryl turned to Chris and smiled.

“That was scary.”

“Well at least we know Riana is fine.”

“Yeah, no thanks to them.” Cheryl said while looking at Britney and Isaac.

“I don’t think Britney should stay at the apartment. She needs to move out.”

Britney heard Cheryl and went over to her.

“I’m not going anywhere. I pay rent just like the rest of you.”

“I don’t think it’s a good idea for you to be there. You and your asshole of a boyfriend nearly killed Riana tonight. I don’t think Riana would want you there anyway when she comes home.”

“We’ll see about that.” Britney said as she goes toward the exit with Isaac behind her.

“I wonder what tomorrow will bring.” Cheryl asked.

***
Shawn looked at the night sky through the window and sighed. Monica walked over to him and put a hand on his shoulder.

“Why you didn’t tell me you knew Riana? We’re practically good friends.”

Shawn smiled. “I know. I wanted to try and take things slow before I did. It just the thought that I finally met the girl I’ve been noticing since I set foot at Shaw.”

“You know that could have been arranged for you two to talk.”

“I know, but I wanted to do things on my own. Besides she was with Isaac at the time.”

“How did you two meet?”

“At the club; I spilled my drink on her.”

Monica smiled. “You didn’t do that on purpose did you?”

“No. I didn’t know it was her at first.”

“I think you would be perfect for Ri. I thought Isaac was, but look how that turned out.”

“I would never hurt her like that asshole did.”

“I know. That was the reason why I liked you because you are a wonderful guy.”

“Yeah, but of course it didn’t work out. Are you happy with Donnell?”

“Happy as I can be.” Monica said silently.

“How did you two become friends? I know it wasn’t from the club.”

“We’re doing a project for our journalism class. By us teaming together, I thought that would have been a way for us to get to know each other, but since what happened with Isaac and tonight, I don’t think Riana would want another relationship.”

Monica smiled and hugged Shawn.

“Be patient and give it some time. Things will work out on its own.”

Shawn nodded and the two walked out of the waiting room.

SIX
A new day has arrived and Riana was being released from the hospital. While waiting on her to be discharged, Cheryl‘s mind began to wander back to the conversation she had with Monica and Britney earlier…

“I understand you pay rent, but do you really think after what happened that Riana would want you to continue living here?” Cheryl asked.

Britney rolled her eyes at Cheryl and got up from the cream-colored couch to go into the kitchen.

Cheryl followed Britney into the kitchen.

“Don’t ignore the situation. You know you were wrong over what happened and the right thing to do is to move out.”

“I agree with Cheryl.” Monica hesitantly said. She walked into the kitchen and gave Britney an unforgettable stare.

“Listen Brit, I love you like a sister, but I really think it is a good idea if you leave for a couple of days until things cool down. By then Riana may have forgotten everything.”

Cheryl laughed. “Please! If you think that you are truly delusional. Riana will never forget what happened and she sure will never forgive her for cheating with her boyfriend. I suggest you pack your stuff and get out.”

Britney went up to Cheryl with a smug look.

“I’m not going anywhere. If precious Riana don’t want to live with me then she can leave. In fact why doesn’t she stay with her new boyfriend?”

She went over to the kitchen table to grab her backpack. She went to the front door and slammed it.

Monica and Cheryl looked at the door slam and sigh.

I wonder why Riana was ever friends with that girl.”

“Do you wonder that about me too?” Monica asked.

“I’m not even going to lie. Yes, I do.”

Monica shook her head.

“I’m not going to fight with you, especially this early in the morning; but I do want to talk to you.”

“About what?”

“About Shawn.”

“Who don’t you know at this school?”

“Will you let me talk? He really like Riana and he do want to try and see where things go between them.”

“You know Ri is not up for a relationship.”

“I know and I told him that. He completely understands, but he does want to try and help her through this.”

“I think that’s sweet that he will. From what I saw last night at the bar and the hospital he was very concern about her.”

“So what you think? Should Ri give him a chance?”

“Maybe, but let Ri figure out what she wants. I have to go and pick her up from the hospital.”

“I’ll be here when you two come back.”

“Okay and try to get Britney here. I think we all need to decide on what should happen with her…”

She will be gone. Even if I have to personally throw her out.

Cheryl walked into Riana’s hospital room and knocked on the door.

“Come in.” Riana said from the other end.

Cheryl walked into the room and smiled.

“Hey. How are you feeling?”

Riana was sitting on the bed wearing the outfit she had on from the other day. She looked tired, but had a sparkle in both her dark brown eyes.

“I’m better. I’ve never been so scared in my life like I was last night. I thought I was going to die.”

“But you didn’t and that’s a blessing.”

“Did you have class today? I’m sorry that you had to miss it to pick me up. If it wasn’t for me doing something so stupid you wouldn’t be missing school.”

“Will you stop? Do not blame yourself for what happened. The entire situation was not your fault. That guy who did this to you was a loser.”

“Do you know what happened to him?”

“Chris went back to the bar to talk to the bartender that was on duty. He informed him that he was arrested and that if you want to file charges you can. I really think you should.”

Riana got up from the bed and sighed.

“I really just want to forget about last night. I wasn’t attacked so I really don’t think I should file charges.”

Cheryl nodded and sighed.

“Just think about, okay.”

“I will. Did anyone come to the hospital last night?”

“Shawn and Chris were here and Monica and Donnell came.”

“Was Britney here?”

“Cheryl looked at Riana. She didn’t know whether to tell her that Britney and Isaac were here and that Britney was still in the apartment.

“Would you be upset if she was?”

“No, as long as I don’t have to see her or Isaac again, I’m fine.”

“Great.” Cheryl said silently.

“I hope you didn’t think I would want to. After what she done I wouldn’t want to see her.”

“Maybe we should go somewhere after we leave here. Are you hungry? We could go out for lunch.”

“She still there, isn’t she?”

“She went to class, but she will be back.”

“You would think she would at least left after what happened. I guess I don’t know her like I thought I did. I’m ready to go home.”

“Maybe we shouldn’t go back to the house for a while. We could visit your parents or go to the mall. At least calm down before we go back.”

“I’m not angry. In fact I’m great; it just that I would have thought she had some morals and decided to move out.”

“Monica and I tried to convince her to, but she thought otherwise. She figures if she pays rent then she has as much right to stay there as we do.”

Riana smiled and started to walk.

“Well, we’ll see about that.”

Cheryl looked at Riana walk to the door with a confused look on her face.

***
When Britney reached her apartment, she opened the door and walked in. When she did, she noticed half of her belongings were in the living room. Some of it was in boxes while some were thrown on the floor.

“What the hell is going on?”

Riana and Cheryl were sitting on the couch looking at Britney while Monica was standing by the TV wishing she was anywhere else but there.

“Hello Britney, nice for you to finally come home. Wait a minute, what am I saying; this is not your home anymore.” Riana said.

“What are you talking about?”

“As of this moment you are no longer on the lease to this apartment, which means you no longer live here.”

Britney looked at Riana then at Monica.

“You went along with this?”

Monica gave Britney an expression reading “I’m sorry” before looking in the other direction.

“I don’t believe this. After all we have been through and you do this to me! Where am I supposed to go?”

“Frankly I don’t care. I don’t believe you! You think you would stay here after what you’ve done?! I though you would have better sense than that.”

“We supposed to be friends. Friends don’t do this to each other.”

“Well you should have thought about that before you slept with Isaac.” Cheryl said.

“Shut up! You never liked me or Monica in the first place. You probably happy this is happening. Watch out Monica because you’re next. She will try to get rid of you too.”

“What is your problem? No one done this to you but you! You expect everyone to forgive you, but news flash, this is the real world. I suggest you stop living in whatever world you’re in and grow up.” Riana said.

Britney walked over to Monica with a heated expression.

“I really can’t believe you. I never thought you would take their side on this.”

“This is not about choosing sides. What you did was wrong Brit. You rather chose a guy over people who been there for you since you were little. How do you know Isaac won’t hurt you like he did with Ri?”

“I know he wouldn’t.”

“I love you Brit, but I agree with Ri and Cheryl. You can’t stay here.”

Britney nodded her head in frustration as she grabbed one of her boxes from the floor. She glared at the three standing in front of her who unanimously wanted her gone.

“You know what, I’m glad I’m leaving. I don’t need any one of you!”

Monica looked at Britney with tears in her eyes while Riana gave Britney a dull expression.

“Whatever Britney; since you don’t stay here anyone I need your key. And don’t worry about the rest of your things. Monica will bring them to wherever you are.”

Britney reached for her key ring and found the key to the apartment. She took it off the ring and threw it at Riana.

“Fine, you can have it.”

She went to the door and opened it. She slammed it with all her strength, causing some pictures on the wall to fall to the floor.

Riana turned to look at Monica and Cheryl with a wide smile.

“That went well.” she said. She went to her room and closed the door.

Cheryl looked at Monica.

“Look on the bright side; at least you have your own room now.”

Monica shook her head as she walked out of the living room.

***
Shawn decided to visit Riana at her apartment to see how she was feeling. After talking to Monica, he found out she was at home and decided to get the address. Now he was on the doorstep deciding whether to ring the doorbell or walk away. After a few moments and a lot of deep breaths, he finally rang the doorbell. Monica opened the door with a tiny smile.

“Hey. Come on in.”

“Hey. This isn’t a bad time is it? If it is I can come back.”

“No, it’s cool. We just had an altercation earlier. We kicked Britney out of the apartment.”

“Wow, I bet that was full of drama.”

“It definitely was. She claimed none of us were her friends and that she hated us.”

“What did she expect though, for everyone to forgive and forget? She messed up and now she has to face reality.”

“I agree.”

“Where’s Riana?”

“She’s in her room. I believe she was taking a nap. Let me see if she’s awake.” Monica said. She went to the hallway and into Riana’s room.

Shawn looked around the apartment with a look of comfort. He started to walk around and look at the pictures surrounding the living room. He picked up a frame that held a picture of Monica, Britney, and Riana that was sitting on the fireplace mantel and sighed.

“I bet they will never be as happy as they were in this picture again.” he said. He put the frame back on the mantel.

Riana walked into the living room smiling from ear to ear.

“Hey.”

Shawn turned around and smiled. Even though she was in a bad situation the night before, she certainly didn’t look it now. She was wearing a black and white striped maxidress that showed off every curve of her body. Shawn tried hard not to stare, but he couldn’t resist.

“Like what you see?” she asked in a seductive tone.

“Sorry, I didn’t mean to stare at you like that.”

“It’s okay. How are you?”

“I’m fine. I should be the one asking you that question.”

“I’m doing better.”

“And you look it. I’m glad you’re better.”

“Thanks. What brings you by?”

“I was wondering how you were. I know that you were released today so I wanted to see you.”

“How did you know where I stayed?”

“Monica told me.”

“You know Monica?”

“Yeah, we’re old friends.”

When Shawn mentioned that, Riana started to sigh.

Great, he’s one of Monica’s “friends.” It’s no telling what they have done.

Shawn realized what he just said and shook his head.

“It’s not like that. We really are friends. We never went out on a date or anything. It’s strictly platonic.”

“Why I would care what you two have done.”

“I can see it in your expression. You thought Monica and I were dating at one point, just admit it.”

“Really, I don’t care. What about the project? I know you’ve been dying to tell me what your idea was.”

“Okay, I’ll tell you.” Shawn said. The two went over to the couch and sat down.

“I think we should do something that everyone can relate to; something that will get people’s attention.”

“I’m listening. Go on.”

“I think we should do a story on everyday life at campus and ask people what they think is a hot topic to discuss in today’s society.”

“I like it. Great idea, Shawn.”

“I think we should start on it right away. We can start asking people in our classes, on campus, even your roommates.”

“As far as the roommates, I don’t know. Right now we all have our share of problems. And believe me; it’s only going to get worse.”

***
After thirty minutes of soul searching and realizing what happened between her and her ex-friends, Britney decided to go over to Isaac’s apartment. She really didn’t want to burden him with her problems, but she figured Isaac is her man now so he should help her with her situation.

Just like I would for him.

She pulled her Pontiac G6 in a parking space close to Isaac’s apartment. She got out of the car and got her backpack and one of her boxes from the back seat. As she was going up the stairs, she lost her balance and almost tripped on one of the stairs. She swiftly regained her footing and climbed the steps two at a time.

She went to the door and rang the doorbell. Isaac did not come to the door. Britney rang the doorbell again and waited patiently for him to open the door.

“I know he’s here. He said he would be.”

After a few minutes, she suddenly remembered Isaac gave her a spare key in case she had to get away from the apartment. She searched in her purse to find the key. After minutes of looking, she finally found it at the bottom of her purse. As she put the key in the keyhole, she heard voices coming from the inside.

I knew he was here. Why he didn’t answer the door?

She postponed opening the door and started to carefully hear what was going on. She heard noises coming from the living room. She put the key into the hole again and opened the door. She walked in, her expression abruptly changing from curious to pure disgust. She couldn’t believe the scene she was witnessing. She looked at Isaac with a look of anger, fear, and sadness rolled up in one. Isaac was on the couch in ecstasy as another female was riding him like it was no tomorrow. The two was in their own world having the best time of their lives and didn’t even notice Britney was in the apartment.

Britney dropped her belongings and ran over to the two. She pushed the girl so far she and Isaac fell on the floor together. She threw the girl off of Isaac so she could get closer to him. She started to hit him with the back of her hand.

“I don’t believe you! How could you do this to me?”

Isaac gave Britney a look of disbelief while Britney continued beating him. He realized what Britney was doing and pushed her from him. He picked her up off from the floor and hit her so hard and far across her face it knocked the wind out of her. She fell on the floor in staggering pain.

“How the hell you gonna come into my place like that! Are you dumb?”

Britney was on the floor in the fetal position. She was holding her head in agony and crying violently.

“Get your ass up, bitch!”

The girl that was entertaining Isaac quickly put on her clothes and was out the door in a hurry.

“Why are you doing this to me?” Britney whispered.

“Because you barged into my apartment like some mad woman and demanding me what I can and can’t do in my own place. I’m a grown man so I can do whatever I please!”

Britney slowly sat up on the floor and tried to get up but couldn’t. She had to use all of her strength to get up and she succeed. She limped over to the door and picked up her backpack and box.

“Listen Brit, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hit you. The girl is a friend of mines and she means nothing. I told you that I love you and I do. Just give me another chance, baby.”

Britney didn’t even look back at Isaac. She looked at the key that brought her into Isaac’s apartment and put it on the end table by the door. She went out the door and went down the stairs.

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