The Cunning (Book 1/2)

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“Am I in trouble?” Madison asked when Jase joined her, she was sat on the edge of the bed. He scrunched his nose up.

“No. I don’t give a fuck that you headbutted him,” he said, pulling his t-shirt off and clicking his neck, “I just didn’t want to be down there anymore and I’m not having you down there with people like him when I’m not around.” He took his cigarettes out of his jogger pocket and lit one. Madison’s eyes followed his hand as it reached for her jaw, twisting her head upwards slightly and frowning down at her neck. “He’s bruised you,” he grumbled in annoyance, about to take a step back towards the door but she grabbed his hand.

“I’ll survive.” He relaxed, ruffling her hair softly.

“That’s my girl,” he said quietly, “you want to smoke?” He sat down on his side of the bed. Madison looked over her shoulder at him,

“Your girl?” she repeated as he started preparing a joint. He looked at her through his lashes,

“You are my girl. So long as you’re here.” Madison ignored the butterflies that his words weren’t supposed to give her and crawled over to him, accidentally jogging his arm in the process. The contents of his grinder spilled over the bed. Her eyes widened,

“I’m so sorry!” she squeaked. Jase just laughed lightly, brushing it off of him and restarting.

“It’s fine, it’s just weed.”

They laid side by side, smoking. Madison took a drag.

“What were you like in school?” she asked. Jase smirked, looking over at her.

“Probably exactly how you’d have expected me to be in school.” She grinned at him.

“A twat?” He laughed, shrugging.

“Depends on who you were I suppose. What about you?” he asked.

“Guess.” Jase nodded, looking back at the ceiling.

“Quiet, got all of your schoolwork done,” he looked at her again and narrowed his eyes, “silent but deadly.”

“What do you mean?”

“That people would have been surprised by your aggression. You were quiet, but you wouldn’t be tormented.” Madison giggled, passing him back the joint.

“What gives you that impression?” She looked over at him, his curls had been pushed down his forehead because of how he was laying, causing them to brush over his brows and give him a more boyish appearance. Madison’s heart fluttered.

“Because no girl on this earth can nut someone like you do without a couple of practice shots before,” he replied. She laughed and he smiled, enjoying the sound of her infectious giggles. However, they soon subsided when she thought about the first time she broke someone’s nose. She’d seen something she wasn’t supposed to see. That was the beginning of the end.

Jase placed the joint between his lips, his other hand in his jogger pocket. It was the subtle things about him that she found attractive. Just his basic movements and when he looked at her with half lidded eyes, the slow exhales of smoke, how he sounded in the morning or how deep his voice was when he shouted or how much authority he had in the house. He had turned her into a different type of victim.

“Did you have loads of girlfriends at school?” she asked. His brows furrowed, the joint bobbing between his lips as he spoke, relighting it.

“Did I fuck,” he said, taking three short pulls and exhaling the smoke, “I never really wasted my time with the girls.”

“How come? You strike me as someone that would have gotten plenty of attention.” He smirked.

“A bit but I never had girlfriends. They were all a waste of time, used to get on my tits, too clingy. None of us really bothered with them.”

“Us?” she asked. He took another long drag, passing the joint back and placing his hand beneath his head, clearing his throat.

“Me, George and Adam.”

“You all went to the same school?” He nodded. “You went to school with Janine as well?” Another nod.

“Yeah, George was always with her and Adam’s gay, so it wasn’t like he had so many options and I just couldn’t be asked.” Madison’s eyes flared.

“Adam’s gay?” Jase smiled, remembering that to anyone that didn’t know Adam, it wasn’t even remotely obvious.

“Yeah, that’s why he’s such a vicious cunt. He used to get loads of shit for being in the closet and stuff at school. He got jumped before he hung around with us. I saw it, pulled them off of him and told him he needs to stand up for himself. He snapped, and he never quite snapped back.” Madison frowned, even though Adam was the one that made her most uncomfortable, she still felt a little sorry for him.

“Poor guy,” she mumbled. Jase breathed a small laugh.

“Life’s cruel, you just have to adapt.” He turned his head to look at her. “What about you? How many boys did you have chasing you?” She laughed, shaking her head.

“None, not with a dad like mine and I wasn’t exactly one of the pretty girls at school.”

“I don’t believe that,” he said.

“I really wasn’t. I had braces and glasses and an uneven bob cut. I spent most of my time in the library, avoiding people.”

“So, you were an ugly duckling.” She looked at him, raising her brows.

“That would mean you think I’m pretty now.” She sat up to lean over him and stub the rest of the joint out in the ashtray. He waited for her to lay back down, on her side this time, facing him. He turned to lay in the same position, propping his head up so he was looking down at her. The space between them had decreased to mere inches. The noise from downstairs was muffled through the floor, and Madison’s heart thumped as he looked her up and down.

“I think you’re fucking incredible,” he said sincerely. She stared up at him, her eyes briefly flickering to his lips, wondering if he could hear her heartbeat as much as she could.

A loud knock on the door cut through the atmosphere.

Jase didn’t move for a second, licking his lips slowly before shaking his head and looking at the door behind Madison.

“What?” he called, annoyance in his tone.

“There’s a fight downstairs,” Sam replied. Jase sighed, rolling onto his back, closing his eyes and ruffling his hair.

“Can’t you deal with it?” he asked.

“No, they’re going at it like animals.” Madison watched him tense his jawbones jut out in frustration.

“I swear, all they do is sit about with their dicks in their hands,” he mumbled before standing up. “I’ll be back in a minute.” Madison didn’t reply but as soon as he left the room, she could breathe again.


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