Chapter 10

Charlotte typed the familiar number into the phone and held it to her ear, taking a deep breath when she heard the dial tone sound. She wasn’t prepared to hear the comforting voice of her father and she found herself holding back tears when he finally answered.

“Hello?” Scott Matthews answered, not believing the caller ID number that was displayed on his phone moments ago. He hadn’t heard from his only daughter in two years, and he had almost convinced himself that he would never hear from her again.

“Hey dad,” she said, and he detected longing and sadness in her voice, along with hearing her sniffles when she heard his voice.

“Hey, Char. Is everything okay? I haven’t heard from you in so long,” he said, worried that she was in trouble and had called him as a last resort for help.

Charlotte chuckled at her dad’s demeanor before answering. “No I’m fine I just wanted to talk to my old man.”

“Oh, well uh, how has everything been? Gosh, it’s been so long since I last talked to you. How is Chicago?” he asked, two years of questions wanting to explode out of him, but he held them at bay in an attempt to not overwhelm her.

“Things have been okay, and Chicago is great,” she replied, not having much to say. She didn’t have a job or friends, so she couldn’t talk about them.

“And Max? How is he?” Her breath hitched in her throat, and it didn’t go unnoticed by her father.

“Uh, Max is- he’s uh- he’s good,” she was uncomfortable and didn’t even take into consideration that her father might ask her about him.

Scott, on the other hand, was suspicious. Charlotte had seemed different, like she was more sedate.
He wondered where the bubbly, outgoing girl he had raised had gone. Maybe Chicago had changed her, though he had other suspicions.

“Honey, are things with Max alright?” he asked.

“Yeah, of course dad, things are great,” she was more prepared to answer that time. Charlotte felt awful about lying to her father, and secretly hope that he would pick up on it and rescue her, though max would kill her if he found out.

“Are you sure? You seemed a little frazzled when I first asked about him,” he said.

“Yeah, I’m sure, I was just slicing some fruit and cut myself and gasped a little bit,” she lied.

Scott knew something was up. Although it was eight o’clock his time, she was in a different time zone, meaning it was eleven o‘clock her time. Add to that the fact that Charlotte hated all fruit except for grapes, and Scott was positive there was something weird going on.

“You were slicing fruit? At eleven o’clock at night? Charlotte, you hate fruit,” he had caught her in her lie, and Charlotte forgot that she had grown up with this man and that he knew almost everything about her.

“Did I say fruit? I meant vegetables,” she tried to play it off, knowing her dad would still be suspicious no matter what.

“Okay, well I would love to talk some more but your mom and I are about to leave for dinner. I’ll call you tomorrow?” he posed as a question, knowing that it was Charlotte’s decision to not talk for two years. He decided to leave it in her hands once again, despite the possibility of not talking to her for two more.

“Uh, actually, why don’t I call you? Max needs to use the phone for work all day tomorrow so I wouldn’t want to get in the way,” she said.

Scott feared this may be the last time he talked to her in a while. “Okay, well I love you and miss you. You should visit sometime, I know your mother would love it,” he said.

“Yeah, maybe. I love you too dad. Bye,” she said, clicking end call when he responded with the same thing. She hung the phone up and slid down the wall she had been leaning on. Her tears flowed freely until the early hours of the morning.


Charlotte had made the decision that tonight was the night she would finally leave Max. She couldn’t take the abuse anymore. She had yet to figure out a plan but she was unwavering in her determination to finally end this vicious cycle that she had gotten herself into. There were only a few problems, the most prevalent being her lack of money. Making matters worse, she didn’t have friends or family that she could stay with. In truth, other than Max, Charlotte really only knew one person in the city. One very high profile person.

Charlotte had been debating with herself for hours, going back and forth about whether or not to ask Jonathan for help. On one hand, he had told her he would help her with anything she needed, but on the other, she already owed him big time after he loaned her the bail money. However, he had seemed genuinely concerned for her wellbeing, but Charlotte also figured he wouldn’t want the burden of another person to take care of. But, he was the only person she knew.

In the end, Charlotte decided to swallow her pride and make the phone call.

It took a half an hour for her to finally push the green ‘call’ button, and when she heard the dial tone in her ear, her heart stopped momentarily. Charlotte had convinced herself that if she made the call, Max would be able to listen in and come home from work as soon as her heard who she was talking to. Just when she decided to hang up and give up the plan, a smooth voice met her ear.


Charlotte nearly threw up everything in her stomach thinking about what she was about to ask of him. She knew he should be saying something, but she couldn’t get her voice to work, and even if she could, she wasn’t sure she could form coherent sentences. It wasn’t until he spoke again that she was jarred back to reality.

“Is anybody there?”

She still felt disoriented, but not to the point where she couldn’t speak. She told herself to suck it up, grow a pair, and say something.

“Hi, it’s Charlotte,” she finally spoke.

“Hey, uh how is everything?” Charlotte noticed his voice pick up and heard ruffling and a small noise in the back of his throat, like he was sitting up.

“Um, it’s been better,” she said, being as vague about her situation as possible. She decided to not tell him about what was actually happening, and instead came up with a lie. “So, Max is going away for work for a little while and during that time we are getting the house fumigated. Do you think I could stay with you for a few days until I can get a hotel?” She asked, realizing that she had offered no valid explanation for why she couldn’t just get a hotel in the first place, but she hoped he just wouldn’t notice.

Unbeknownst to Charlotte though, Jonathan had taken notice. He didn’t say anything, however, because he was incredibly certain he knew what she was really asking.

“Yeah, that’s fine, uh, do you want me to pick you up?” he asked, trying to accommodate to her the best he could.

“Yeah, can you get me around ten in the morning tomorrow?” she asked, knowing that Max left for work at 8, but she would need time to gather up what little she had at the house and throw it in suitcases.

“Actually, I have a morning skate tomorrow; can I pick you up after? Around 12?” he asked.

“No!” she exclaimed, and she hadn’t realized it left her mouth, but when she did she slapped a hand over it and took a deep breath before explaining. “It’s just that the fumigators will be here at 11:30 to start and they need me out before they start, so-“ before she could finish, Jonathan interjected.

“No problem, I can pick you up at 10,” he said, knowing he had an optional practice the next day.

Charlotte let out a sigh of relief, knowing that Max would be home at lunchtime the next day, demanding she make him his usual, and she didn’t want Jonathan and Max to have a run in.

“Okay, sounds good, I will see you at 10 tomorrow,” she said.

“Great, see you then,” he replied.

“Wait, Jonathan,” she said, trying to catch him before he ended the call.

“Yeah?” his tone sounded worried.

“Thank you,” she said, knowing that she could never repay him for what he had done for her, even though he hadn’t actually taken her in yet.

“Anytime,” he replied.
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Hopefully the content of this chapter makes up for the fact that it's been waaaaay to log since i updated (insert cringing face).
However, I am going to try and update this more frequently and start another story soon, I just dont know who it will be about, so if you have any suggestions feel free to leave them in the comments!
On a side note, please let me now if there are any instances where i spell Jonathan's name wrong bc im a little paranoid about that.
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed and as always comments are welcome and greatly appreciated!