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Count Me In

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You gazed at his face, somehow still stunned by how beautiful he was, buried under the stage makeup. You watched from the audience, a big smile plastered on your face when he connected eyes with you.

Even after everyone dispersed, you sat, waiting patiently for Nathan. He walked out, make up free, his skin slightly pink from where he scrubbed too hard. You hugged him tightly, allowing yourself to revel in the feeling of his arms around you.

“You were amazing, Nate!” You grinned up at him, leaning up to bump your foreheads together.

His hands stayed locked around you, “Only because you were here.” He spoke in barely a whisper, staring down at you like you were the only thing in the world because to him, you were. You always would be.


You hated the way people looked at him. The way they talked about him like he wasn’t a person with feelings. You hated them. You hated the way everyone blamed him, they way they made him into a villain for their own agenda.

The perpetrator this time? Max Caulfield. You listened as she tried to make up a story about Nathan pulling a gun on a girl. It was bullshit. You stood behind Nathan’s chair, propping yourself up on his shoulders. If looks could kill.. man.

“Principal Wells you don’t actually believe her, do you?” Your eyes pierced through him and Sean Prescott agreed with you, saying how absurd this was.

“I-” Wells started, “-the jury is out on this one. I’ll let you all know when I’ve come to a decision.” Bullshit.

Sean Prescott quickly lead you and Nathan out of the office before either of you could go off. You glared at Max the whole way out. After a few departing words, his dad was gone and it was just you and Nathan.

“You didn’t have to defend me, you know.” His eyes were watching the ground.

You stared at him in disbelief, “Yes I fucking did, Nate. No one and I mean no one gets to just accuse you of shit you didn’t do.”

That was the night Nathan confessed everything to you. He told you about Jefferson, Chloe, the drugs, everything. You laid with him the entire night, reassuring him nothing would ever make you change your mind about him.

Nathan loved the beach and he loved you, but most of all, he loved being at the beach with you. Lately, a bunch of whales had been coming up on the shores of Arcadia Bay. He thought this was the perfect photo opportunity.

Your face was sad. He watched as you approached one of the “poor things” as you called them. He raised his camera and snapped a photo of you caressing the whale, hair blowing in the wind. You hugged him tightly when you came back.

Both of you walked back to his truck hand in hand, him opening the door for you. By the time he reached the drivers door, you were flicking through the camera roll, a delighted smile on your face. God, he loved you. You looked up at him and before you could say anything, he was on you, kissing you so passionately, holding your face so tight. You two could’ve stayed like that forever, kissing(sometimes Nathan would suck on your neck) and petting each other.

But, of course that wasn’t realistic because a sharp knock on Nathan’s window made him pull away. For a moment you were embarrassed at how fogged up the windows were, instead becoming discouraged when the window was rolled down and you saw David Madsen shaking his head in disapproval. He talked sternly to the both of you about privacy and... you tuned him out after awhile.

Nathan pulled out of the parking lot quickly, muttering lowly about what a giant mood killer he was.

“Maybe we should go somewhere we can’t be interrupted then.” You had a devious look on your face.

God, he loved you.

You could always soothe him better than any whale song. So that’s what you did, you ran your fingers through his hair and let him relax. He was always so wound up. Now, you were walking with him back to his dorm.

Chloe was the first person you saw when he opened the door. She was holding Nathan’s phone, “What the fuck are you doing in my dorm?” He was pissed.

Warren Graham came around the corner, his face still bruised up from his and Nathan’s last altercation. He was going for Nathan without a doubt, “Max, go! I got this.”

“Don’t fucking move!” You heard yourself yell at them. Warren headed straight for Nathan, as if he was the threat out of you two. You didn’t register what you were doing until your head collided with Warren’s, sending him tumbling onto his back. Chloe backed up as you turned on her for the phone, she was too stunned to stop you.

Max was still holding up her hand like a fucking idiot. You looked at all of them as Nathan was hauling you away, yelling to them how his father was on the way. Once you were in his dorm, his eyes turned soft, “What the fuck is wrong with you?” He pulled a towel of the corner of his bed, and it was then that you realized there was a trail of blood trickling down from your forehead.

“I couldn’t just let him hurt you, Nate!” He was knelt in front of you, holding the towel to the small cut.

Nathan realized something in this moment. He realized that no matter how far or wide he searched, he would never find someone who loved him or cared for him as much as you did. You were head butted full force to protect him. You dealt with him everyday, even his bad days. Even though to you it wasn’t “dealing with” you loved being with him. You were it for him. He wanted to spend the rest of his life with you, so he asked if you’d want that too. When you said yes, with tears running down your face, he promised you he’d get you a ring.

It was all coming to a close. Chloe and Max found Rachel’s body in the junkyard. Jefferson knew. Nathan was next on his list. He begged you to go, but you couldn’t. You couldn’t leave him. He was all you had. The night was cold and unforgiving.

You saw the gun before he did. So when Jefferson reached back, you ran in front of him, making the ultimate sacrifice and taking a bullet to the heart for him. Next thing you knew, you were lying down in his arms, “I love you, Nate, I love you, I do.” He kept repeating that he knew, he loved you too, “There’s something I need to tell you, Nate.” The world was beginning to slip away, you smiled, thinking about how happy the news would make him in literally any other scenario.

“I’m here, tell me, please.” He begged. Jefferson stood with his gun poised, interested in what you had to say.

“You’re-“ blood was beginning to flood your lungs, you pushed through, “You’re sister had all girls but-“ you took a breath, “-I think we were gonna have a boy, just like you wanted.”

His hand touched your stomach, “You- You’re-“ you nodded, your eyes beginning to shut slowly.

“I love you, Nathan Prescott.” The last thing you heard before you slipped away was a gunshot.

David Madsen, minutes too late, tackled Mark Jefferson to the ground. Just feet away, he saw your bodies. A hole through your chest and one through Nathan’s head. He noticed a polaroid picture of the traumatizing scene laying in the dirt. He had to pass Jefferson off to another cop before he did something he’d regret.