The Chase - Chapter 22.2
The Chase - Chapter 22.2 13 reasons why stories
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Bryce tells all

The Chase - Chapter 22.2

So he goes home. He goes straight to Bryce's room. He sits at Bryce's desk. He waits. He doesn't move an inch. He sits there and waits until Bryce comes back.

He rushes into his room covered in sweat. Only now does Clay notice how much weight Bryce has lost. It's not a lot, but it's enough to notice.

Bryce doesn't realize Clay is there until after he closes the door and turns around.

"Oh!" Bryce jumps up a little.

"Nice to finally see you."

"Yeah. Same." Bryce throws his shirt off, wiping sweat off his forehead.

"How was practice? Where did you and the guys go?"

"Practice was the same as always. We just hung out at Zach's."

"Really?" Bryce is just waiting for Clay to leave so that he can hop in the shower.

"Well, that's interesting because Zach told me he hasn't spoken to you in weeks and unless you've got new invisible powers, I didn't see you at practice.

" Bryce just rolls his eyes and walks into the bathroom. "Don't walk away from me!" Clay is furious and follows him into the bathroom.

"What're you doing?" Bryce turns to Clay.

"Just tell me the truth!"

"Just leave!" Bryce pushes past Clay and into the room.

"No! I'm not leaving until you talk to me! I'm sick of this! For too long you've been acting weird and lying to me!"

"I don't need to tell you everything! It's my life!" Bryce throws his shirt back on.

"Where are you going?"

"Back out for another run."

"No!" Clay steps in front of the door. "No more running. Just face me. Be a man!" Clay doesn't know why he says it and regrets it instantly as he can tell it triggers something in Bryce.

"Be a man?" Bryce shouts loudly.

"You've got to be kidding me! Just because I love you does not mean you know me or have the right to know everything about me!

" That's the first time Bryce has said that word, but it's not how either of them wanted to hear it.

"Why not? Why can't you?"

"Because if I tell you... if I..." Bryce starts having trouble breathing but quickly calms himself down. "If I tell you then it brings you into all of this. It makes more trouble for you."

"I can handle it." Clay steps towards Bryce, but he takes two steps back.

"But I don't want you to. You're happy. You're actually flourishing since that stupid text was sent out."

"You were doing well too."

"No, I wasn't! I never was!" Bryce turns around, taking deep breaths in and out.

"Bryce..." Clay is starting to worry about him.

"I'm sad." Bryce turns around, tears in his eyes. "I'm lonely. I feel so alone all day. Everyday." His throat is closing up and hurting as he holds back the tears.

"And you can't possibly understand. That day when it all came out you had Tony right away. Then you had your amazing parents hug you and support you. I had no one.

My dad hurt me and my mom just watched. I lost all of my friends. They all watched as I was in pain. They didn't care. No one did." Bryce stops, turns around and takes a second to breathe.

"And for a while I there I actually thought about dying. How simple it would be to die and end-all of my pain. I thought about it every second of every day. But then...

" Bryce turns around, a few tears slowly falling down his face. "Then It seemed to get better. It felt like things were getting better."

"Because it was. The first day of school went perfect."

"But it didn't. It was perfect for you. You met Hannah. You had Tony. I had no one. I was alone. I was being stared at. I was being made fun of. Every corner I turned I heard whispers.

" He wipes his eyes with his shirt. "And it all came back. All those thoughts. All the pain."

"But you're not alone. You have me. You always will."

"But..." Bryce gasps for air. "It's not enough. And I know it sounds awful. But I need more. I need my family. I need my friends."

"Hannah and tony are your friends."

"No, they're not. They're clearly your friends. I'm just the boyfriend of a friend. I don't need pity friends. I need people who know me. People who like me for me.

" Bryce takes a seat on the bed. "You wanna know what I've been doing. I've been running. Running a lot. I've been running because it is the only thing that makes me feel anything.

When my adrenaline is rushing it all feels good. It's like a drug. And when I'm not running, all I want to do is die. I want to go to sleep and never wake up again."

"I can help you through. Just let me help you." Cla tries getting close to Bryce, but he quickly jumps up and steps back.

"Stop it! Please! Stop trying to help me!"

"Why? Why can't I help you? I love you!"

"And that's the problem!" Bryce is freaking out, his heart racing. "You're doing amazing. You're even thriving. And I'm just a weight holding you down.

That's why I haven't spoken to you! That's why I've been avoiding you! If... if I put all of this on you it won't help me, but only hurt you. And I can't do that to you."

"That's not your choice." Clay steps forward again, this time Bryce stays still but is shaking. "I choose to help you. You can't change that." He touches Bryce's hand and that freaks him.

"No!" Bryce pushes back Clay and quickly scrambles to his closet, taking out a duffle.

"What are you doing?" Clay is freaking out as he watches Bryce shake and throws clothes into the bag.

"Bryce! What are you doing?" Clay grabs Bryce's shoulder, but Bryce quickly whips around and pushes Clay back and onto the bed.

"Stop it! Stop trying to help! It's not your job! It's no one's job!" He zips up the bag. "It's over."

"What?" Clay stands up.

"We're over. I'm going to go. I'll come and get my stuff later." Bryce walks out of his room and into Clay's parents.

"What's going on? We heard shouting." Clay's mom sees the tears coming down Bryce's face.

"Thank you guys for everything. I've really appreciated it." He looks at them once more. "I'm so sorry. I'm sorry about everything." He rushes past them and out of the house.

Clay's parents walk into the room and rush over to Clay who's on the floor, huddles up against the bed and crying. They both go down and begin hugging him.

"What's going on?" Clay's dad looks at the clothes thrown all over the floor.

"He... He's..." Clay is having trouble breathing, his throat closing up the more he cries. "He's gone."

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