I'm Here to Fix You

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Chapter 8

JAKE

“New boyfriend?” I asked as I sneaked up on her. Seems like these days it’s the only way to catch her on her own. Ever since I made that statement, that I’m here to fix you thing, Silvia’s been avoiding me. Not directly, given the odds, she couldn’t avoid to see me even if she wanted to, but ... she does her best not to remain alone with me.

In order to give her space I kind of quit summoning her to my office. I wanted to wait and see, but it’s been over three weeks and she’s still giving me the cold shoulder, and ... I’m not a patient man.

Startled, Silvia quickly put her phone away for some reason. Funny. Should I be jealous?

No, really, tell me. I have no idea what jealousy feels like, should I feel jealous because she’s evidently chatting with someone yet she doesn’t want me to know? I mean, am I supposed to feel irked that there’s some dude flirting with my crush? I’ve never had this problem, so this is really new to me.

“So our Sissy has a secret, huh?” Oh, well, I think she’s got more secrets than she’ll ever tell, but this one’s no big deal, I’m pretty sure. Or rather, it’s no life-cracking thing, it’s a flirt she’s started, something that for some reason she feels uneasy letting me know. I wonder why.

She rolled her eyes. “You know I hate that nickname.”

“Tess calls you that.”

“Well, Tess has gained that privilege, you haven’t.”

“You mean not yet.” I winked. Told you, I need to gain my small corner in her tiny circle of trust before even trying to help her, otherwise she’ll reject my every attempt. So we gotta become best buddies first things first. But a girl like her, how do you breach through all those layers of protection? I’m pretty sure it would be easier to hack the Pentagon, even with my poor geeky skills.

She rolled her eyes. “Jake ...”

“Oh, come on, I thought we’d moved past the cold acquaintance part. We’re friends, aren’t we?” Did I just friendzone myself?

“You’re my employer ...” Silvia argued weakly, slyly slipping her phone into her back pocket. Oh, she definitely doesn’t want me to see who was she texting and what were they saying. Not sure if that’s good or not.

“So?” I bit back, skeptical.

“So ...we can’t be friends.” She warily slipped further away from me, seemingly embarrassed. Mmh, that’s new. I thought daylight Silvia was a feisty one, but she seems really uncomfortable around me these days, and I’m starting to think it’s not just due to that talk over three weeks ago. I mean, her cheeks were kinda red. I’ve ever seen that shade of red on a woman’s face when it was a sweet little virgin I was flirting with.

Okay, yeah, I know, Silvia is indeed a virgin, don’t remind me. I’ve got that thought constantly hammered in my mind, along with the mad desire to pop her cherry, but I gotta be patient. One matter at a time. This could actually be the first time in my life where I’m willing to go deeper than a one-night-stand.

Wait. No. What did I just say?

Huh. No. Never mind. Me in a relationship would be like Lucifer dating a pure angel. Inconsiderate, dangerous and totally selfish.

But ... man, I want her. Like ... really want her. I want her beneath me, writhing and moaning and screaming my name. But I also want her beside me, snuggling closer into me after sweet lovemaking. I feel like planning the perfect date and complying with her every whim and all that relationship crap I’ve always so dutifully avoided.

I feel like being a boyfriend. Me. Last time I was a boyfriend I was like ... 10? There was this cute girl in my class, unless we spent at least three days together, she wouldn’t kiss me, so I thought well, whatever. It’s not like I cared much for those things. It was really simple: we went to school together, I accompanied her back home, and as a thank you she let me peck her lips.

I’m not sure I can count Olivia as a girlfriend. We’ve never labeled our thing, nor have we spent enough time together in that sense for me to think about it. I suppose that, if we really need a label, I could say Olivia and I were friends with benefits, but it’s more complicated than that.

Admit it, you’re surprised. You thought I’d be one of those impenitent players that change girls more often than how they change boxers.

Well, I am and I am not. To be honest, Olivia is probably the closest thing to a girlfriend I’ve ever had, and it ended so badly that I still feel like dipshit, even after over 10 years.

But ... let’s focus on the now. Silvia. My angel with horns, my feisty Italian babe, my constant daydream, the one girl that’s gonna drive me insane.

This is quite the dilemma, you know. I can’t have her without being in a relationship with her, but I can’t be in a relationship with her because ... well, I told you, me Lucifer, she pure angel I’d risk tainting.

“I should get back to work.” I heard Silvia mention. I guess I spaced out a little too long.

Without thinking, I grabbed her arm to make her stay, and I’d say she flinched, not sure why. “Can we talk first?”

“Jake ...”

“No, seriously. We need to talk.” Hell, yeah. I’m tired of all this let’s give her time pantomime. I mean, alright, she wants to date someone else? Fine with me. What I can’t accept is that she keeps these distances.

“We’ve got nothing to talk about ... it’s everything fine.” Silvia claimed.

I scoffed, letting go of her arm. “You might be one hell of a liar, but baby, I’m the fucking king of pretenders. Don’t play the game with me, because I fucking invented it.”

She grimaced. “Can you tone down the cursing? It’s early morning.”

“Oh, please. As if you didn’t curse worse than a sailor.” I snorted. “Changing subject doesn’t work with me, honey. Just spit it all out. What is it? What caused this silence treatment you’re punishing me with?” Told you, I’m not a patient man.

She huffed, hugging herself, which is code for damnit, you caught me red-handed but I don’t want to give in. I might not be a patient man, but I’m a pretty good stalker-uh, I mean, observer. “I’m not giving you the silence treatment. We’re talking, aren’t we?”

I rolled my eyes, leaning back against the wall. Maybe the corridor right before the restrooms isn’t the most romantic place in the world, but it’s the only one where we could talk eye to eye, without attracting the attention of other employees. With my reputation it’s even too easy for rumors to spread, and I’m pretty sure there’s at least one person in this office that would sooo love to get my angel with horns in trouble. Jeez, this office is like high school all over again sometimes.

There’s the bad boy, aka me. There’s the Queen Bee, aka Hillary. Then there’s the cute introverted girl that’s stolen the bad boy’s attention.

Mmh. Wait a minute. That’s not quite high school. That’s more like the cliché romance novel we just published. It sold terribly well, more than you could possibly imagine.

But anyways, I took care of Trevor the snitch. Man, I’ve never had that much fun playing evil wolf, I swear. I thought he was gonna faint. He probably had flashbacks of the times in high school when he got cornered by some bully. I hate bullies, but you know what they say, desperate times ...

My uncle’s gonna find another way, I know that, but it was fun watching Trevor gasp for air as he tried to justify himself. I can’t wait to find the right excuse to fire the hell out of him. Unfortunately I’ve got no proof he was spying on me, and even if I did, that’s no right motive to sack someone.

“You gotta think I’m really stupid, baby, because, come on, you can do better than this.” I spat, irked. How come that people first of all think I’ve got no brains? Is it the blondish hair? Is it the good looks? Man, you people should really quit judging a book by its cover.

Silvia sighed, lowering her gaze. I could hear her phone buzzing with an incoming message, but she ignored it. Or rather, she preferred not to read it in front of me. “Jake, our situation is complicated, you should know that.” She claimed. “You’re my employer, which puts me in a delicate position, and I can’t just-”

“Do better, for fuck’s sakes. Do better.” I snapped. “If you’re gonna bullshit me with the conflict of interest crap, save your breath. Come on, come up with a better excuse, I deserve at least that.” I pushed off the wall and in one swift movement I was an inch or two from her. For some reason she didn’t react.

She did press against the wall, basically caging herself, but she didn’t react. Weird. So I took advantage of that, and placed an arm right beside her head, leaning in enough to take in her scent from real close. God, how much I craved to kiss her. But that would come with time ... or not. Huh. Definitely not.

“What do you want me to say?” Silvia wondered, looking up at me. She met my gaze, which was a good sign. At least she wasn’t backing away.

“The truth, for starters.” I stated as I placed my other arm beside her head.

“What truth?” She tried to be naïve.

I cupped her cheeks, pressing my body against hers, causing her to flinch. “Why have you been drifting away?” I asked. “Is it what I said? Did I dig too deep too soon?”

“Jake ...” she tilted her head to the side, so that she wouldn’t look me in the eyes, but I tilted it back, keeping it firm. Now as ever I craved to kiss the hell out of her.

I leaned in, dangerously close to her mouth, and my body pressed enough against hers for the both of us to feel the friction, as her small yelp testified. “I’m not withdrawing anything of what I said, baby. I meant it all. I’m here to fix you, and I’m not going to give up until I succeed.”

Somehow that gave her the strength to fight. She slipped away from my grip, the same fiery gaze I’m used to seeing in her in the daylight reemerging. “I don’t know who you think you are, Jake Watson, but you know shit about me. And you can’t afford saying such things.”

“I know more than you think.”

She snorted. “Why? Because we spent a few nights talking on the phone?” She gave out a dry laugh. “Please. As if that meant anything. You’re delusional, buddy.”

I shrugged. “Pretend all you want. I know what’s beneath the armor.”

“Do you?”

I grabbed her arm, pulling her against me, enough for us to be squeezed against each other, and in one swift movement I pinned her against the wall, caging her. I knew I had only a few seconds before she threatened my chances to be father again, so I made it quick.

“I know you hide demons way worse than you’d like to admit. I know you’re a damaged soul in search of redemption. I know why you can’t sleep at night. Because you’re afraid, you’re damn afraid that you’ll be left alone with your worst nightmares. I know you used our calls as placebo. I know that even if you won’t admit it, you miss those calls, yet you won’t resume them because you’re too proud and scared at the same time. I know I fucking terrify you, Silvia Banchi, because I’ve known you for how long, two months? And I’ve already started to figure you out, you’ve let down your defenses, and I found the tiny door from where I could sneak in. You let me because you subconsciously wanted it. You want me to do this, no matter how much you fight it.”

Silvia remained in silence for a long, long moment, then, out of the blue, she harshly pushed me off, throwing me against the opposite side of the wall, her caging me this time. “Just because we spent a few nights talking, doesn’t mean you can claim the right to know who I am, Jake. Just because I’ve let down my guard with you, doesn’t mean you’re special in any sense. Because you’re not. Goddamn, no one is to me, and sure as hell you aren’t. You’re just one guy amongst the billions of others. Maybe the rest of the world will fall for your charms, but I’m immune.”

“Doesn’t seem like it.” I half smirked. Her lips were a little too close to mine for her words to be any true.

Instead of pulling back, Silvia leaned in, her lips grazing mine. “You’d love it, wouldn’t you?” She murmured. “If I admitted right here, right now, that I want you, you’d so love it.”

I smiled, wrinkling my nose. “Well, that’s no mystery, is it?” I’d have flipped us in a moment, but boy, I love this fierce side of her. I was aroused, alright? So sickly aroused that if she didn’t dare kiss me right now, I might as well burst out of frustration.

Her arms at each side of my head, Silvia clenched her jaw, and I saw one glint, just one glint of something I know even too well. That anger, that fury that slips in at the unexpected, that wicked monster lurking behind her eyes. I’ve seen it so many times. In the mirror, that is.

“You think you can swoop in and be my savior. Cut through the thorns that surround my heart and set me free.” Silvia spat harshly, using words as swords. “You think you can be my very own Prince Charming, but you simply forget one detail. I don’t need a goddamn savior. I am my own savior.”

“You’re your own jailer, Silvia. The sooner you realize it, the better.”

She clenched her fists, barely resisting not to hit the wall beside my head, and I saw it once more, this time more than a glimpse, that monster deep inside her eating away at her, consuming her strength to be kept at bay. How familiar that is. “You don’t know me, Jake. You don’t know who I am, what I’ve been through.” She spat, her voice louder yet sharper. “You keep trying to dig deeper, never stopping even for a moment to think that you should be careful, because you have no idea what you may find. There are lids that are better left where they are. Didn’t the tale of Pandora’s box teach you that?”

“Oh, baby, I have a quite fair idea of what I’ll find. That’s exactly why I’m digging.”

Her eyes darkened. Or rather, her hazel eyes were half swallowed by a dark halo that would have scared anyone ... except that I’ve looked darkness dead in the eye, we’re so tightly bound to each other that it leaves me indifferent.

“What exactly is it that you want from me? Is it the sex? Do you like these sorts of games?” She wondered coldly.

“I think I’ve told you what I want, baby.”

“But why?”

I searched her eyes, looking for a trace, something to cling onto, a small trace of the Jean Gray I’ve talked with at night, but there was only room for the Dark Phoenix. And there I realized, she’s way further down the gutter than she’d ever want to admit. She’s in the eye of the storm. And that storm is called depression.

Now, there are various ways to react to depression. Some lock the whole world out. Some others, like me, give in to every possible distraction, doesn’t matter how wrong it is. And some others, like Silvia, tuck it way down below, in hopes that it’ll go away someday, yet it never will. Not until it’s tackled and faced head held high.

Sliding my hands over her hips, I gripped them, and she yelped, but didn’t move. I pulled her into me, but she had no reaction. Her fists were still at the sides of my head, her gaze was still lost in the meanders of her darkness, but I could see that tiny door there, the one that got me in, in the first place. And without hesitation, I barged in.

I kissed her. Rudely, savagely, somewhat dominantly even, waiting for the moment she’d regain control over herself. She did. But only to reciprocate the kiss, deepen it, make it harder and harder, until even I growled inside her mouth, feeling my restraints flying out of the window.

I could take her right here, right now. But it wouldn’t be right, would it? She’s a virgin. And the wall beside the restroom, or the restroom itself, isn’t a really great place to lose your virginity.

Damn conscience. Any other man would have simply taken advantage, but me, I’ve gotta be the correct one. No one’s ever deemed me a good man, yet here I was, a raging erection she could definitely feel, and the hardest intention not to go any further than making out.

Truth be told, I shouldn’t have kissed her at all. But you see, the easiest way to sneak into someone’s soul, is through the body. Don’t believe all that crap about touching somebody’s soul with words and whatever. No. There’s nothing more soul-binding than the most intense night of passion. Sex, people, sex. It’s the fastest way through someone’s deepest chords.

I could have taken the slow route, like I wanted to. Gaining her trust, bringing down her walls one brick at a time. But she’s way too far down the gutter for me to be considerate. Maybe I’ll burn in the flames of Hell for doing this, but oh, how sweet the journey’s going to be.

I gripped her hips, pulling her closer and closer into me, and I lost myself in the ecstasy of her lips against mine. Her fists unclenched, and she dipped her hands in my hair, silently telling me one defense had been broken down. When she closed her eyes, I realized I’d somewhat soothed the wicked monster that had been taking over.

I waited until she was somewhat limp in my arms to flip us, but even when I tried, she didn’t let me, and I unconsciously smirked. Okay, maybe I like it rough. Sue me.

Pulling enough back to speak against my lips, Silvia, eyes half closed, murmured: “You’re a tempting devil.”

I chuckled. “I know.” I pecked her lips. “And you love it, don’t you?”

“I’ve waited 23 years, I can’t just give it away to the first guy that makes me horny.” She claimed bluntly.

I smiled, once more pecking her lips, and let my hands slip to cup her ass cheeks, to which she moaned against my mouth. I kissed her deeper. “Maybe I’m a tempting devil, and I’m pushing you onto the road to Hell, but who says it’s such a bad thing?”

Silvia smiled against my mouth, pressing herself against me. “The answer is sex, isn’t it?” She murmured. “The cure to this ... rage. The cure to all these tangled thoughts, it’s sex.”

“No, but it’s one hell of a palliative.”

“And you’d be a willing doctor, I presume ...”

I gripped her ass cheeks tighter, pressing her against me so that she would better feel my boner against her thigh. “Does that answer your question?”

“If you give me time to think about it, I’ll never do it.” She admitted.

Right there lies my chance to be a good man, ladies and gentleman. Give in to her rash desire, and be damned for the rest of your life. Pull back, and lose the one chance of your life.

Ugh, screw it, I’m not a good man, never have been, no matter how hard I strive to. “So you wanna do it here? Where anybody could hear us?”

“Well, the restroom’s free right now.”

“Your first time, you want it to be in a restroom?” Well, maybe I’m a better man than I thought. Or maybe I’d just rather not give a peep show to my employees.

“Better your office?”

I could hardly resist not to laugh, I swear. “Better a room with a bed maybe?” More comfortable.

She snorted. “Don’t be so traditional, you of all people. It’s a itch. Anywhere is fine.” She attacked my lips before I could answer, trailing hers along my neck after, biting even a little bit harshly.

“I should have known you weren’t that innocent ...”

“People always think virgins are the epitome of pureness. They just never stop to consider that we may be pure in the act ... but we almost never are in thought.”

I gotta admit she’s right there. Some of the best fucks I’ve ever had? Virgins. And not all as innocent as one would think. Virgins, especially if older than 20, are the more willing, the more ecstatic, because they’ve waited so long that they’ll give themselves over to you in any way you want.

“So you’re not angel ...”

“I told you since day one, Jake. I’m not an angel.” I bit my lip when she bit down on my skin, quite harshly.

“Are you a vampire, then?”

She laughed. “Why? Afraid I’ll suck the life out of you?”

Judging by the way she was sucking on my neck, yeah. Too bad there’s no life to suck. Even the thirstiest vampire would spit out my rotten blood.

I wetted my lips, enjoying the sweet sting of that pleasurable pain. “Believe me, baby, I’ve been thinking about you sucking me since day one.”

She punched my shoulder, though with a small grin. “Always so gross.”

“Oh, please, as if you didn’t know I’d really love to-” she covered my mouth before I could end the sentence, and because deep, deep, deep, deep down I’m a gentleman, I won’t repeat to you what I was going to say, but you’re dirty-minded enough to know it, I’m sure. Hell, if your mind weren’t down the gutter most of the time, you wouldn’t be reading me right now, would you?

“Spare me the dirty talk. Wanna do it or not?” Silvia pressured. I’ll admit I could hardly recognize her.

I suppose that’s why I hesitated. Damnit, I thought I hadn’t any good man cells left in me. “If tonight you’re still up for it, then yeah. Right now? No.”

She pouted. “I wouldn’t have expected you of all people to turn down an easy chance like this ...”

“Yeah, I’m amazed at myself too, but, you see ...” I flipped us, so that she was cornered this time, my body on hers. “I’ve wanted you since so long, baby, that I want it to be right.”

“And now it wouldn’t be?”

“You’re not in your right mind. You think giving in will rid you of the itch and placate the storm inside you.”

“Won’t it?”

“It might. But tomorrow, or even tonight, you’ll open your eyes and see what you did. And you’ll hate yourself and me for it.”

“You speak as if I were drunkenly giving myself to you.”

I chuckled. “Well, it’s kinda the same, baby.”

“Why do you keep calling me baby?”

I shrugged. “I guess I like it.”

“Mmh.”

I heard footsteps coming our way, so I stepped back from her. We’ve been away for too long, if people start doubting, rumors are gonna spread at the speed of light. Before whoever could come play spoilsport, I adjusted myself in a way that the boner wouldn’t be too evident, and took a deep breath, waiting for the person to pass. He eyed us both suspiciously, but said nothing.

Eyeing the corner, I repeated myself: “I really mean it. You want a fix? Something to rid you of your raging thoughts? Fine with me. You know my number. Or I’ll leave you my address and you can come over.”

“Why?”

I shrugged. “Because we’re alike, you and I. We need way more strength than common people could ever gather. We’ve faced evils that all these regular brains here could never possibly grasp, yet we’re still here.”

“What tells you you’re right about me?”

“Your poker face gives you away.” I admitted. “Right now you’re trying so goddamn hard to keep the façade. You’re forcing all your strength into your expression because you don’t want me to know just how close I’ve gotten to uncovering your very own Pandora’s box.”

“That’s ... quite a philosophical way of putting it.” She argued, insisting on a fake smirk that barely touched her lips. Is it odd if I say I feel like I know her so well already? Be it that we’ve spent all those nights talking on the phone, be it that I’ve observed her for so long, I feel like I’ve always known her. Odd, huh?

“Take it however you want. It’s the truth. You-” I cut myself off when the man from earlier came out of the restroom. I’m pretty sure rumors gonna spread about me and the translator nevertheless now, but whatever. Once he was gone, I took a brief breath, and went on: “You know I’m right.”

I moved closer, decided to end this cat and mouse game. “Listen, it’s quite simple.” I caressed her cheek for some reason. “Whether it’s to get rid of a itch or to placate the whirlwind in your head, it’s the same to me. You know where to find me tonight if you want to.”


SILVIA

Why am I here? Why? Why? Why? Why on earth would I do this? I don’t need it, do I? I’m a strong woman, I can go on and on without sex. I rejected such an offer once, I shouldn’t have any qualm in doing so again and again and again.

Then why am I here? Why am I here, at the correct address, right outside his door? Why am I so tempted to just knock and get it over with? I made it this far, why give up?

I didn’t even call Jake. I came straight to his place. Why? I mean, what assures me he’s at home? And that he’s home alone even. For all I know he might either be out with friends or maybe have them over or worse, he might be with some chick ... shouldn’t I have called first? He told me to give him a call in case ...

Yet he also said to come over. It can’t be wrong, can it? He said it himself. It’ll help. It’s a itch I’ll get rid of. And it’ll help with ... with that other problem. Just how bad can it be?

Worst case scenario, it’s a total fiasco, and I’ll have to face awkward days for months. But I mean, how many are the chances that a guy like Jake would miss the target? I mean ... well, let’s be honest here, with his average, it’s quite hard to believe he might ...

Okay, real worst case scenario, the onetime is so good that I keep coming back. That sends me off balance, making me have a secret fling with my boss slash somewhat yet not quite friend. Would it be so bad? I mean, have you seen Jake Watson? Let aside rationality, just how horrible could it be to have this precise guy come at my call every time I need it?

I can’t even think of feelings because, let’s be honest, that either of us could develop any, it’s less possible than me flying to the moon.

So ... worst case scenario, we get to some sort of friends with benefits thing. Not that awful, is it?

Taking a deep breath, I raised my fist to knock. Before I could, my phone rang, signaling an incoming call. Convinced it was my father, I swiftly took it, but the ID read Ryan instead. For some reason I smiled.

“Hey ...” I greeted, feeling something odd at the pit of my stomach. We’ve been chatting a lot these weeks, like ... really, really a lot. Basically all day and night. Just ... chatting of nothing and everything.

“Hey ...” he mimicked me. I could perceive the smile in his voice. “How you doing?”

“Not much differently from the last time you asked two hours ago ...” I chuckled. I suppose it was needless to tell him where I was and what was I about to do.

Ryan laughed. “Yeah, I just wanted to make sure ...” he cleared his throat. “Listen, you’ve got anywhere to be tonight?”

“Uh ... no?”

“Great! My flight just landed, and I was wondering if we could um ... meet up? As friends, of course.”

I chuckled. “Of course.”

“Don’t get me wrong, Sil ... it’s just that I’m not ...”

“Not quite ready to anything after Alicia, yeah, I know. Did I ever give you the idea I was looking for something specific? Ryan, I just like chatting with you.” No lie there.

“Okay, so if we spend ... I don’t know the weekend together, it won’t mean anything, will it?” Ryan wondered.

“Shouldn’t you see your grandma?”

“Busted.” He laughed. “Granny’s at aunt Bernice’s. I’m actually in Boston because-uh ... well, for you, Sil.”

“For me?” Huh. Not sure how to take this. I mean, should I trust the tingly feeling in my stomach?

“Yeah, I ...” Ryan cleared his throat awkwardly. “... listen, I’d rather cut this off now before saying something stupid. So, how about I pick you up and we go eat pizza or whatever you prefer?”

“As friends?”

“As friends.”

I bit my lip, eyeing Jake’s door. This is like that choice boys sometimes have to make, isn’t it? Between the game with their friends and steamy night with their girl. Friends or sex? Sex or friends? The eternal dilemma.

Well, not for me. While any guy would have easily picked the steamy night, to me it only took Ryan’s adorable ramble as he mentioned the places we could see this weekend. One of the easiest decisions of my life.

“Okay, I’m actually nearby the bookstore, I’ll meet you there in 10 minutes, alright?”

I’m sorry. I know you like Jake, but ... Ryan is Ryan. There’s no dramatic halo surrounding us, no heavy pasts, nothing ... just me and Ryan, having fun. I love it. And maybe who knows,someday ... fingers crossed, things might evolve between us.

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