I stretched my arms and gripped the steel railings. Why I held on so tightly, I don’t know. As I looked down at the water beneath me, I wondered what it would feel like to drop and hit the surface. I never thought I’d get to that stage of my life, where I found myself standing on a bridge and wondering whether or not to jump.
The sky was growing darker. I couldn’t see much around me, and the chill had intensified. I began to shake with fear, and then, from out of nowhere, I heard a man’s voice.
“Yes. I see her now. She’s on the bridge. Hurry.”
“Excuse me,” the stranger said gently, as if I were on the verge of flight. Probably because I was. I slowly turned my head, and I saw him standing just behind the steel beams, beneath the dim street lights. At that point, tears had begun to pool in my tired eyes. I wasn’t sure how much longer I could hold on.
He spoke again. “You don’t have to do this. Killing yourself, it’s not the answer.”
I hesitated. “It’s not really killing myself when I’m already dead inside, is it?”
“As long as you’re still breathing, you have something to live for.”
Ugh. I turned away from him and the tears fall freely. My ears picked up the sound of his approach.
“It’s a pretty selfish thing to do, don’t you think?”
“Selfish?” I turned to face him again as he grabbed a hold of me from the bridge. I nearly slipped off.
Fuck! I grasped both of his arms.
“I’m gonna pull you up.”
I nodded my head quickly, and the stranger, my savior, lifted me over the railing. My legs went over the rail awkwardly, and he fell backwards onto the safe concrete. I landed on top of him, and straight away I noticed his piercing brown eyes. Oh, and his chiseled features, five-o-clock shadow, and kissable lips. Our eyes locked in place, and for the first time in years, I felt a spark. Something lit up inside me. Something I thought was lost.
God, I want to kiss him.
My thoughts were interrupted as I heard the sirens blaring in the distance. With every bit of courage remaining, I looked down at him, crashing my lips onto his.
He almost gave into the kiss as I felt his hands move up to my hips, but I quickly pulled away.
“Thank you.” I breathed out as I hastily stood up, running away from him as far as possible. Out of his life for good.
Or so I thought.
My name is Isla Luella. I’m 24 years old and I hate my life. I’ve been through a lot of shit and I’m still so young. I work in a crappy diner as a waitress. I’m on my feet the whole fucking day, and don’t get paid much. I’m trying to find a new job, but no one wants to hire someone with little to no experience doing anything else. I’d be happy doing whatever if it meant I didn’t spend most of my days slapping the hands-off guys who think it’s okay to grab me without my permission. And let me tell you, that happens quite a lot. Every day some asshole thinks I’m there for his enjoyment and pleasure.
I only put up with it because the tips are what keeps me surviving. I live by myself in a tiny, dirty, and run-down apartment. There’s mold in every room, and roaches the size of fucking rats, but it’s all I can afford right now. It’s either this, or I live at home with my parents. And that’s definitely not an option.
It wouldn’t be so bad if I actually gave a shit about my parents, but I don’t. They’re complete assholes who have ruined my life and I can’t stand to be around them.
The only person that I care about is my best friend, Holden. He already lives with his girlfriend, Daisy, in a one-bedroom apartment about a half an hour drive from my place. Sometimes I crash on their couch whenever I hang out with them, which seems to be a lot. I’d move in if they had a spare bedroom, but since their apartment is small, I’m stuck in a vortex of shit. I get along well with Daisy. She’s sweet and probably the best thing that’s happened to Holden. She’s great and doesn’t give me crap whenever I need to spend the night at their place. I’ve known Holden years, but we’ve always been friends. He’s like a brother to me.
I met Holden while he was working at a café. He was the barista all the girls went gaga over. They would flirt with him all the time, and of course he would reciprocate. He loved it. I don’t look at him the way other girls do. He’s told me that he could never see himself being with me and I told him the same thing.
Works out perfectly to be honest.
“Excuse me, please.” I grinned as I tried to get the barista’s attention. He had about twenty girls trying to do the same thing, except they weren’t asking for coffee, they were asking for his number.
I spoke to him politely as I waved my hands in the air. I realized that this wasn’t the best way to get his attention.
Of course, he’s one of those guys.
“Hey, asshole!” I exploded, hoping that would get his attention.
Well that certainly did the trick.
He looked at me, smiled, and winked before he excused himself from the girl he was flirting with, and made his way towards me.
“What’s with the yelling, sweetheart?” he whispered. He widened his smile and I realized he was trying to toy with me.
“Just a coffee thanks.” “When you’re done trying to seduce the other customers, of course,” I added.
He nodded at me. His smile was still plastered on his face. “Sure thing, sweetheart.”
I reached over the counter and grabbed a tight hold of his shirt, and pulled him closer towards me with my voice raised.
“Don’t call me, sweetheart!” I fumed.
He put both hands up in the air and began to apologize as the shocked expression remained on his face. “Sorry. Fuck! What’s your fucking deal?” he growled.
I looked down at my hands and realized I still had a tight grasp of his shirt. I let him go and pushed back a little, throwing some money on the counter. He noticed my shaking hands and locked eyes with mine.
“I just need my fucking coffee.” I grumbled. I wouldn’t have been so mad if he’d been doing his job in the first place.
“Sounds to me like you have an addiction to caffeine.” He mocked.
“I don’t have an addiction. It’s my first coffee for the day, but I need to get to work soon, and you’re wasting my time.” My tone had eased a little. He motioned for me to come closer. My eyes narrowed at him as I wondered what he wanted from me.
“Open your mouth,” the barista commanded.
Is he for real? What the hell does he want me to open my fucking mouth for?
“What? Are you kidding me right now?” I complained with my eyebrows raised.
“It’s the only way you’re going to get your coffee.”
I sighed and moved in closer. I opened up my mouth and he took a deep whiff. Satisfied that I hadn’t had anything yet, he got back down and began to make the much-needed hot beverage.
“Here,” he whispered as he handed me my drink.
Fucking finally. “Thank you.” I beamed as I took the first sip.
“What’s your name?” he grinned.
“Isla.” I replied as I placed the coffee back down on the bar.
I lifted up my cup, closed my eyes, and took another sip. When I opened them again, Holden was smiling widely at me.
“Don’t give a shit what your name is,” I added.
“Yes, you do.” Holden beamed with confidence.
I smiled as I shook my head, turning away from him, making my way back to my table.
“What took you so long?” Sloan protested, looking down at her phone.
“Barista was an ass.”
She looked up at me and smiled before she turned her head towards the counter. She obviously recognized him immediately. “Oh, you mean Holden?”
“You know him?” I gasped with a confused expression.
She winked at me and her smile widened. “Yeah, I know him.”
God, I know exactly what she means by that.
“So, you fucked him?” I blurted out.
I don’t even think that was meant as a question. I already knew the answer.
“Guilty,” she responded with her eyes back on her phone.
After hanging out with her for a further ten minutes, I made my way back to the bar for another coffee.
“Holden,” I called out his name with confidence.
He turned his head to me and smiled before leaving the same girl he was flirting with before.
“That was easier, wasn’t it?” I jokingly expressed with a smile on my face.
“Extra shot, please.” Holden smiled as he made his way to the coffee machine. Once he was done, he placed the coffee down in front of me.
“On the house,” Holden beamed.
On the house my ass. I don’t want anything from this guy.
I took out my money and slammed it down on the counter to make my point. Holden watched me as I took my coffee, and slowly brought it up to my lips. By this time, Sloan had made her way over.
“I’m heading off, Isla.”
I turned to her as I placed the coffee back down on the counter.
“I gotta go. Just got a call from James. He needs help with something.”
James was Sloan’s new boyfriend. They hadn’t been together for long, but I couldn’t see them being forever. In fact, none of the guy’s she’d been with have been forever types. Seems to be more into the one-night stands. I was surprised she was with James for as long as she was.
“Alright. I’ll catch you later.”
She hugged me goodbye before she walked out of the cafe. I took out
my phone to call for a cab. I couldn’t afford to be late for work.
“Fuck!” I exploded.
“What’s wrong?” Holden asked. I looked up at him and could see the genuine expression on his face.
“My battery is dead and I need to call a cab.”
Holden took out his phone and handed it to me.
“Here. Use mine.”
“Really?” I asked with a surprising tone.
“Yeah, just don’t make any overseas phone calls,” Holden added.
I couldn’t help but chuckle. He smiled at me as he watched me dial the cab directory. I ordered a cab and handed the phone back.
“Thanks,” I said with genuine appreciation.
I sat at the counter and talked to Holden for a while as the cab was going to be another forty minutes. I thought he was actually pretty cool. Before I left, he asked for my number. We both knew that there was no attraction, but we got along so well in that short amount of time.
“I’ll call you sometime.” Holden placed his phone back into his pocket after storing my number inside.
“That’s what they all say,” I joked.
He winked at me as I left the café. He called me the day after, and we’ve been best friends ever since.
I sat on a black leather chair in the Hotel lobby, where Holden worked.
He’s done well for himself after studying hotel management. I shake my head every time I see him having to deal with rude guests or his employees.
I liked visiting the hotel sometimes, just to sit down and watch all the businessmen in their Armani suits. I would smile as I listened in on their conversations. Most of their discussions revolved around sex and business.
It’s funny how relaxed I feel whenever I’m in this place. It feels safe. Familiar. I’m sure it’s more to do with Holden being here, too.
I was pulled from my thoughts when someone suddenly sat down next to me. I turned to him and noticed his cheery smile. Another thing that struck me, was his age. He was a little older than me.
Okay, maybe a lot older than me, but he was definitely handsome. Sexy in fact.
His hazel eyes were piercing into mine. Silver hair streaked his black waves. I blushed as I gazed at him a little longer than I should have, focusing on his beard and mustache, and wondering how that would feel rubbed against my-
“How much.” The man inquired.
“Excuse me?” I shrieked. My face was flushed from embarrassment.
Wait. He doesn’t think I’m a prostitute, does he?
“I’m not a prostitute,” I argued.
“You’re stunning. I’ll pay you whatever you want for one night,” he continued. He leaned in and whispered into my ear, which sent shivers throughout my entire body.
“How much for you to make all of my fantasies come true?”
This story is available on Amazon and Kindle. I will be posting the first four chapters only. I hope you give it a chance.
Thanks so much,