Breaker (Riders of Apollo #4)

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Aurora Sterling

The girls drag me into the next room after a few minutes of hanging in the lounge. "So, we need to talk to you about something." Marielle says and my heart kicks into high gear. Anyone with anxiety knows how terrifying those words are. I flashback on the last few days of knowing them and come across nothing that I've done wrong.

"Wha-What is it?" I twist my hands, making them red and splotchy. I feel a small spark of pain but it helps me focus on the situation.

"We know that you live in the bad part of town, on your own with only a little bit of security." I get tenser and tenser as Saviour talks and I find myself on the edge of breaking down. I can handle this, I take a deep breath and nod for them to carry on. "We were wondering if you would consider taking an apartment in our territory? It's little but bigger than yours is now and it's above the cafe you were in today... we can get to you really quickly and nobody would even think about hurting you."

"Umm." I can't think of an answer, it's like my entire brain just went on shut down mode. Don't ask me to make decisions while I'm in the middle of a panic spiral. I just stand up and wipe my hands on my jeans, I make a vague gesture to the door before I head out of it in search of Breaker.

I have to weave my way through so many big people and I finally bump into someone I recognise, Rubble looks at me with concern and reaches out to touch me but I flinch away. My chest starts feeling tight as I feel surrounded, claustrophobic would be the better word for it. I know the girls followed me, I can hear them but my brain can only focus on finding Breaker. "Breaker." I choke out, my hands are shaking, my entire body is shaking and I just need to get out of here.

"He's in the kitchen." He reaches out again, this time allowing me to slip my hand into his. I know he'll take me to Breaker so I follow him through the pack and almost start crying in relief when I see him. He's leaning on the kitchen island but the ruckus caused by our arrival makes him turn around and within seconds I've burrowed myself into his chest with his arms bound around my waist.

I take my first proper breath and he strokes the back of my head as he looks down at me with worry. "What happened?" Rubble asks from right behind me, I just press myself closer to Breaker as I try and calm my breathing down, mimicking the rise and fall of his chest. His steady heartbeat is music to my ears as I count the beats to distract myself and keep myself grounded.

"We were talking to her about the apartment and then she got caught up in a large group of men and kept getting more and more anxious." Lexie tells them. Them being Romeo, Runner, Rubble, Breaker and Bear who are watching the scene with curiosity.

"Cassie..." Marielle's soft voice coaxes me to look over my shoulder at her. It has been too much in one day, letting two strangers touch me for hours and then being the centre of attention with all the bikers, the questioning. I just need to relax and I almost beg Marielle to let me and not ask me any other questions because I will fall into a full on panic attack and they're embarrassing. "Why don't you go and get some rest? We can talk another time."

I sigh in relief and nod, Breaker gently tugs me back to his room and sets me down on the window seat with a blanket and a bottle of water. "Do you need anything else?" You. I almost answer but I just shake my head with a small thank you. "Once you've calmed down, I'll take you to the apartment so you can see it. You don't need to make any decisions in the near future, you've got time."

"I'm sorry." I whisper back, refusing to look him in the eyes because I know he probably finds me annoying, a burden really since I can't even regulate my own emotions or thoughts but I'm doing my best.

"No, Rory, don't be sorry. You haven't done anything wrong." He just sits with me while I try and recharge from everything that's happened today. Normally, I'd have to do this alone just to quiet the noise but I don't mind having Breaker sat opposite me. I can only hear the slight rustle of the book he's reading while I stare blankly at the pond outside, the running water helping my thoughts dial down from 100 to the standard 95.

It's another two hours before I'm available for conversation and I flick my eyes away from the pond to Breaker, who still looks content despite not moving for two hours. "You feeling a little better, love?" His accent washes over me and I relax subconsciously.

"Yeah, I'm sorry for causing such a big... thing?" I can't think of the right word so I just fill in the gap with whatever. He chuckles softly and stands from the seat, he clicks his back and shoulders before reaching out for me. I slip my hand into his and let him pull me up, I stumble into his chest and just stay there, too tired to move.

Bad side effect of panic/hysteria is exhaustion. Breaker strokes the back of my head and kisses my forehead before guiding me out of the room and out through the back so that I don't have to go through all the people to get to his bike.

I quite happily take my place behind him and snuggle into his back, sighing softly as he starts the bike and heads towards the apartment. As advertised, the ride there is only five minutes long which is kinda disappointing and when Breaker sees my reluctance to get off the bike, he removes my helmet for me and picks me up.

I wrap my legs around his waist with a startled squeak, my brain knows that he won't drop me, the reaction is simply because his hands are on my butt and my face is so close to his that if I stuck my tongue out it would touch his lip.

He looks as shaken as I am and he slowly lets me down before gesturing for me to climb on his back, which I am much more comfortable with, and I rest my head on his shoulder as he bypasses the cafe and unlocks the door to reach the apartment.

There's a small walkway with a stained glass roof that slants up with the stairs, B doesn't put me down just carries me up and unlocks the next door. The place is at least twice the size of mine and I slip off B's back in awe.

The entire left side of the apartment is floor to to ceiling glass overlooking the bay, the sun is setting on the city and the soft orange light is shining into the room.

The bedroom is on the right of the front door (it's own room and everything!) with soft carpet and an ensuite bathroom. The bathroom actually has a bath in it, which is unreal to me since baths are considered a luxury in my book.

The kitchen, that spans the wall to the left of the front door, has an island and a wall of white cupboards with a range oven in the middle, the countertops are a light marble and the rest of the apartment is empty.

This could be fun, just needs some character.

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