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"Is everything okay here? Do I need to call the police?" It was Erin, her coworker. Chloe looked at her gratefully. Only a few people were outside at this time of the evening, probably because it was cold and even those ones did not pay them any mind. Instead, they went about their business as though they did not see Chloe struggling to free herself from Lucas's grip. Erin had always disliked Lucas, and her dislike for him had intensified even more in the past few months. She was standing a few feet away and looking at Lucas with distaste.

He released Chloe's arm reluctantly and muttered under his breath to her, "I'll see you later. You should not flirt with anyone. It's not nice or polite. How would you feel if I was flirting with every female that walked past?"

Chloe did not bother telling him how ridiculous he sounded telling someone to be polite when he did not have a single polite bone in his body. She also decided that it was best not to point out the fact that he had done more than flirting when she had caught him cheating on her. Not only had he cheated on her, but he had also beaten up the girl that he had been cheating with when she had started yelling at him for not telling her that he already had a girlfriend. It had taken Chloe and a neighbor's intervention to get him to stop beating up the girl. She did not say any of this, though. Instead, she rubbed her arm and looked down at it, not surprised to see the bruise that was forming there already. Lucas followed her gaze and looked down at the bruise too. Without saying anything, he turned and walked away in long strides.

"I really do not understand why you put up with his shit. I know I sound like a broken record, and I'm only your coworker, but I think it is best that you break up with him. That guy has got serious problems. He looks like the controlling and violent type." Erin said as soon as they got back into the restaurant.

"I know. I've made up my mind to break up with him. I'm just waiting for the right time. I'm afraid that it is only a matter of time before he becomes physically abusive." Chloe said, averting her gaze. She was ashamed of herself, but the truth was that she was scared of breaking up with Lucas for two reasons. The first one was that she was afraid of what he would do. The memory of him beating up that girl black and blue right in her presence was forever burned in her memory. He had seemed like a different person, almost as though he was possessed. The second reason was even more shameful, and she knew that she'd rather die than let anyone know it. The reason was that she did not want to be totally alone. As bad as Lucas was, he was the only major person in her life, and in a way, she loved him. However, all that was rapidly changing, and she had finally made up her mind to do away with his toxic ass.

"You're right. He's giving off all the signs. It is better for you to end the relationship now." Erin cautioned as they parted ways and went to attend to customers.

Chloe wholeheartedly agreed and had tried to break up with Lucas a number of times now, all to no avail. As soon as she mentioned anything like that, he would break down crying and begging, and then just like that, she would accept him back. However, he was beginning to release a side of himself that he had carefully kept under wraps before, and she was not sure that she wanted to see what lay underneath when he unveiled it. In the next thirty minutes, her shift was over. She came out of the restaurant cautiously, half expecting Lucas to jump out at her from the shadows. She did not see any sign of him though, and so she entered her car and drove the short distance from the restaurant to her house.

"The guy is crazy, and the sooner I distanced myself from him, the better I'd be." She thought to herself as she drove.

It was a sad thing indeed that Lucas had decided to resort to stalking her. The truth was that nowadays, she was afraid of him and was thinking of the best way to break up with him and have him accept it. It had not always been like this, at least not at the beginning. When she first met him, he had been a decent guy or had seemed to be one.

All her life, she had been a loner until she met Lucas. As far back as she knew, she had been shuffled from one foster home to the other and had had enough abuse to last a lifetime. As soon as she had turned seventeen, she had broken away from the system and had paved a way for herself, even though it was not an easy task. Chloe had met Lucas when she was twenty-two years old. She was working as a waitress at a restaurant, and he had come there one evening. She could still remember that day very clearly.

Libre Baskerville
Gentium Book Basic
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