Today has been such a hectic day but, as promised, here is the conclusion to “Sean Forrester is Innocent”.
I hope you enjoy!
Sean Forrester is Innocent (Conclusion)
“Don’t worry honey, I’ll get it,” Hannah says from behind the door.
She stops in her tracks when she sees who it is. He can almost see a glimmer of Emily within those beautiful blue eyes.
“You are not supposed to be here,” she says.
“Hannah, I’ve been cleared. I didn’t do it.”
A girl, a few years younger than Bella was when she was murdered, comes out and grabs her mother’s leg. She has downs syndrome.
“Momma, who’s this?”
“Darling please go inside. He’s nobody,” Hannah says.
Sean bends down to get on her level and he reaches a hand out. Even though this isn’t his child he feels connected to her somehow.
“Sean,” Hannah says, “Do not touch my baby girl.” She swats his hand away but she is not fast enough.
“My name is Eve,” the girl says.
“Well isn’t that a pretty name,” Sean says, “I’ve met a lot of people and your name is the prettiest.”
The girl, Eve, curtsies and Sean, trying to make any sort of connection applauds the girl.
“Eve please go inside,” Hannah says.
“Are you going to just leave Sean out here?” She looks at me and back at Eve. “He’s not a bad man. I can tell,” she says.
Hannah sighs and asks, “you’re not leaving until I let him inside are you?”
“Okay, I guess I can’t say no to you,” Hannah says. She opens the door wider and offers me to come in, telling Eve to go and get Sean some water.
“She seems nice,” Sean says.
Before he walks into the house Hannah whispers into his ear, “Do not take this lightly. I am only letting you in because the most innocent person in the world wants you here. If it weren’t for her, you’d be out on the street.”
“Noted,” Sean says. “As I was saying, she seems nice,”
“Has Downs,” she says.
“Yeah, I figured that much.”
“Doesn’t mean she’s not just like everyone else, she can still play sports and fly a kite. Just has a little more difficulty doing it all.”
“And you’ll be there to support her through it all,” Sean says.
“Yeah. Kyle wanted to abort her but I told him no. Told him we’re going to love this baby just like we would any other baby.”
There’s an awkward silence as Eve comes into the room with a glass filled to the top with water.
“Eve, how much water did you spill in the kitchen?”
“Few drops,” she replies.
“So what do we do when we spill?”
“We clean it up.”
“So go on, clean it on up,” Hannah says. Eve scampers out of the room, eager for the moment she can come back and meet the nice man.
“So what do you plan on doing now that you’re free?”
“You know everyone keeps telling me I’m free but they don’t get it. I’m no more free than I would be if I did do it. No one’s going to hire me and I can’t stay anywhere.”
“You don’t know that,” she says.
“Glad to see you haven’t changed, still trying to keep it positive.”
A tear forms in her eye and she starts to sob.
“Hannah?” Sean rushes to her side, “Hannah what’s wrong?”
“I shouldn’t have turned on you like that. But you have to understand the position I was in. It was either you or Emily.”
He holds her tight and strokes her blonde hair, now showing streaks of white, while she cries, softly whispering into her ear that it’s all going to be alright.
“How can you say that? Thirteen years of your life stolen from you and the killer of that poor girl is still out there. Your own daughter thinks you killed her best friends and your wife turned her back on you when you needed her most. How can you say it’s okay?”
“Because I love you, both of you, and that’s not going to change.”
“You realize your making a molehill out of a mountain,” she says.
He laughs and says, “Getting upset isn’t going to change anything. The most I can do is let you both move on from this nightmare. And besides, that’s the wrong analogy.”
“So where does that leave us?” She asks.
“It means I forgive you, and Emily, for everything that’s happened to me.”
Just when Emily thought she had regained her composure she breaks out into tears once more.
“Why are you crying mommy?” Eve asks from the other room.
“God, Eve, what have I told you about listening in on adult conversations?”
“Not to do it,” she says, “I’m sorry momma.” She turns her attention to Sean, “Why haven’t you been drinking your water? Did I make it wrong?”
Emily takes the opportunity to get up and leaves the room to wash herself up.
“No, honey, you made it perfectly. I’m trying to make it last.”
“Oh, okay, that makes sense. Did you hurt mommy?”
“No honey, mommy hurt herself, but she’s trying to get better.”
“I have a band-aide if she needs it,” Eve offers.
“No, I don’t think that’s necessary. Thank you though. You should save that for yourself.”
“But I’m not hurt.”
“Everyone gets hurt, honey. Sometimes we hurt ourselves, other times we’re hurt by others but everyone gets hurt. If you’re not hurting now, you’re in the ‘in-between’.”
“Yeah, between hurts. Now’s the good time of life, pretty soon someone will come around and cause you to feel pain. That’s just a valley you have to get through. You’ll find out soon enough.”
Eve stares at Sean for a long time through her almond shaped eyes before she finally says, “You’re weird. I like you.”
Emily comes back in and takes Eve upstairs, promising her that she will see Sean again soon. When she comes back downstairs, leading Sean to the door, she says, “Sean. Look I know you have every right to hate me. But you’ve forgiven me. If you ever need anything, a place to stay, food, please come by.”
“Kyle might not like that.”
“Kyle and I are getting a divorce,” she whispers, “she couldn’t handle having a Down’s kid.”
“Well in that case I’m here for you too,” Sean whispers. He turns around and walks down the steps that he so desperately wants to call home, to family that was once his.
“It’s that child killer,” someone called out from across the street. “What’s he doing here? Bastard should be locked up, should be dead.”
It’s been a week now and still no one has followed up on a job interview. No one wants him to work for them because no one wants him in general. He is a washed up monster with no future and no hope.
Sean couldn’t helping thinking that maybe he should be dead. After all, no one would hire him and everyone, when they recognized his face, would immediately get defensive, avoid eye contact, or even just leave the room.
No one wanted to talk to him and perhaps that was best. He was never really the sociable one in the first place, in fact he was scary to some. Probably just scarier now that he had a crime pinned to his chest like a scarlet letter only he didn’t commit the crime and he doesn’t deserve the punishment.
The thought of suicide crosses his mind, but he doesn’t linger on it for too long. After all, he didn’t try so hard to survive prison just to take his own life now. He was innocent, that’s all he needed to know.
He made his way back to Hannah’s house, the only place of solitude left. Eve opened the door and, with it the scolding of Hannah. He missed her voice, her laugh. The way she would scrunch up her nose when she smiled. He missed everything about her, everything that could’ve been. He never got the chance to raise a family. He saw it in Hannah’s eyes, the look she gave him when he came by, the look of apology, or regret, of love. Maybe, just maybe, he could try to start anew with Hannah and Eve.
It is important to remember that Sean Forrester is innocent in his own eyes because, at times, even Sean Forrester didn’t know if he was innocent or not. In fact, he was surprised to hear that he did not kill Bella because, on the night of her murder, he was drunk and disorderly. He had no recollection of waking up in the middle of the night and feeling the urge to keep his daughter away from that dangerous Bella girl. He has no memory of seeing Bella having sex with an older boy on the back lawn, the boy who would later be identified as her “real” killer, in place of Sean. He doesn’t remember waiting in the bushes until they were finished, wanting to talk to the young girl about her lifestyle choices. And when she threatened to tell the police that Sean had raped her if he told anyone, Sean didn’t remember beating Bella Rightguard over the head with a nearby rock to keep her quiet and away from his little girl.
Call it a cosmic sense of karma, but the evidence leading up to Sean’s incarceration was not the evidence that was incriminating toward him. He had served his time regardless.
Sean Forrester had never knowingly harmed a soul in his entire life. The only soul he damaged was in a desperate act to keep himself and his family safe. So now, as he sits on the couch with Eve in his lap and Hannah on his side handing him a warm cup of coffee, knowing that he has never looked at someone the wrong way, he feels comfort at the fact that he can rest easy because he has never knowingly harmed a soul in his life.
Thank you all so much for reading and going on this journey with me. I hope you enjoyed and I would love to hear feedback/comments either in the comments section or via direct messaging. Thank you again and I hope you all have a fun and safe weekend. And, as always, remember to Always Respond!