THIS CHAPTER CONTAINS A DESCRIPTION OF ABUSE AND SEXUAL ABUSE AGAINST A CHILD.
Chapter 36 I am here for you.
Following Max, we walk out of the hotel, and I immediately spot one of Luke’s cars. It’s standing as close to the entrance as cars are allowed to park that we don’t have to walk many steps before we reach it. Which is to my relief because this baby bump pillow is sliding down, and unless I need to fake a birth, then I need to sit the fuck down now! Max opens the door and turns to me, and an amused smile spread across his lips when he sees my struggles.
“Remember that you are pregnant.” He tells me with a teasing smile, and I swallow hard, nodding as I slide inside the car. I know that he meant that I need to act like I’m pregnant, but the comment was far from what I needed to hear right now. I am way too busy trying not to freak out over the fact that Jax and I are the bait, so I don’t need more shit to worry about.
Soon it will be only Jax and me. Sure, some guys will pick us up at Kiruna airport and drive us to the ice hotel, but what if the Mexicans find out? Max said that there’s no way for them to know, not even if they ask around at the airport because he has made sure that no one is allowed to talk about it. But damn, the Mexicans are also the Mafia, and I bet that if they want someone to talk, then that person will speak. What if…
No! No what-ifs. No buts! There has been plenty of that stuff already! I stare out through the black window as Jaxson takes a seat next to me, and as soon as Max has shut the car door, the car takes off towards Sundsvalls airport.
“Is someone following us?” I ask after a few minutes, and Jaxson looks at me, his eyes traveling from my eyes to the fake baby bump, and I have to fight the urge to try to cover myself.
“No, and don’t worry about that.”
“Well, I am worried.”
“I know that you are but try not to be. We will be fine. Sure, the Mexicans are here, but even if they follow us to the airport, they won’t be able to do anything there. And no one will know our destination, except for the pilot when I tell him.” Shaking my head, I glare at him crossing my arms over my chest.
“So you’re telling me that the airport is just letting us in, not asking where we are going and that they are fine with not knowing? Seriously, airport security is ridiculously hard, so I don’t buy that.”
“Babe, in case you missed it, we are the Mafia. We will do whatever we want to do. We know all sorts of people, people who have the power to help us with everything we need. So yes, no one but the pilot will know, and of course the airport in what was that place name?”
“Kiruna.” I say, and he nods.
“Yes, Kiruna airport will know, but only because we need to be cleared for landing, but still no one there will know who just arrived. All they will see is this.” He says, gesturing between us, but I still don’t like this plan.
“I don’t like this. What about the others?”
“Luke and Iza will continue to travel the road we first decided on. They will have most of our guys with them while Max, Isaac and Kaylee, and a few others take another route. Max will be visible to let the Mexicans, who are most likely watching us, know that he’s here and try to lure them to follow him instead.”
“Are you okay with this shitty plan?”
“It’s the best one we have.” He shrugs.
“And if they go after Luke?”
“Well then, let’s hope he dies fast.” An evil smirk starts playing on his lips and I give him a scolding look.
“Jaxson, don’t say shit like that!” He rolls his eyes at me, and my scolding look turns furious which not seems to intimidate him at all since the asshole starts to chuckle.
“Don’t worry about Luke and Iza. If the Mexicans go after them, then they will get an unpleasant surprise. Our guys know what they are doing, and they have prepared for the worst. They have enough firepower to take down an army, so relax.”
“I can’t relax knowing that my friends are in danger.” He takes my hand, and I stiffen as he looks into my eyes.
“It’s okay to be scared, but I promise that they will be fine.”
“You can’t promise that.” I mutter, and he squeezes my hand harder.
“This time, I can. If they will follow anyone then they will follow Max, and if they attack him, they won’t be long-lived.”
“Aren’t you scared that Isaac will get hurt?” Frowning, he looks away from me, but I didn’t miss the worry and pain in his eyes. Squeezing his hand back, I wait for him to speak.
“Usually, I am the one who goes with Max everywhere, but Isaac is the better choice for this. Isaac is one of the best, but he’s also a hell of a lot tougher than you think. Remember that he spent years pretending to be one of the Mexicans? He knows their ways, and therefore he’s the one best suited to go with Max. But I did ask Max to trade place with Isaac, and I got a no. But that is okay. I understand Max, and I agree with him. I would have done the same as Max. Our goal is now to protect all of you who don’t belong to the family, and it might not be the best plan we had, but it’s not that bad either. Both Isaac and I know what we are in for, and tricking death is one thing we have done many times.”
“That didn’t answer my question.” I say, and he gives me a look that says that he doesn’t want to talk about it, but still, I can’t stop myself
“It must be very hard for you not to be there, to have to leave the one you love.”
“It’s not…” He starts, but I interrupt him.
“Not love? Are you saying that you don’t love him?” Snorting, he pulls his hand away, glaring out through the window.
“Come on, Jax, talk to me. I can see how worried you are and how much you are hurting.”
“Stop.” He mutters, but still, I continue.
“You love him. Everyone can see that. Then why aren’t you with him?”
“Liv, cut it out!” He warns me.
“I will stop when you talk to me. Tell me why you aren’t with Isaac. Why aren’t you with him in all ways I know that you want to be?” He turns to look at me, anger shining in his eyes.
“I don’t want that!”
“Yes, you do, so stop lying. You want him. I don’t know what happened when you freaked out, but I know that you want everything he can give you.” I say and watch him grit his teeth.
“You don’t know shit about me!” He snaps, his voice dark with anger. But I can take that he’s angry with me if it helps him get back with Isaac.
“No, I don’t, but I can see that you are scared, that you were terrified when I said that I want him to fuck you. Are you ashamed that you want it? Is that what this is about?”
“I don’t give a shit about what others say or think about my way of living!” He growls, and I frown, not understanding.
“Then what is going on? Why aren’t you with him? Why won’t you let him fuck you?”
“I tried, and I almost killed him before he got the chance! So I can’t be with him!” He screams so loud that I jump. My eyes widen, and I stare at him. Dragging a hand through his hair, he looks away with a heavy sigh. Why would you try to kill the one you love? What could possibly make you want to do that?
“But, why would you try to kill him?” I whisper, and he stiffens even more.
“I already told you, I beat him half to death because I almost let him fuck me.” He snaps, and my thoughts start spinning in all kinds of directions, all coming to the same conclusion. Something terrible has happened to Jaxson. My hand trembles slightly when I lift it and place it on his shoulder. He tenses up even more and pulls away. Not wanting to let this go just yet, I move closer and wrap my arms around him from behind, leaning my head against his shoulder.
“Something bad has happened to you. I am so sorry. If I had known, I would never have asked you to do it. I hope that you can forgive me.” He relaxes slightly, sighing again.
“There’s nothing to apologize for. It’s not your fault. This is all on me.” He says, his voice no longer angry.
“No, it’s not your fault.” I tell him, rubbing my cheek against his shoulder when he stiffens again.
“It is my fault because I am the idiot who can’t control myself.” He snaps, pushing me away, and turns to look at me. The anger is back in his voice, and the feeling of danger that I can sense around him sometimes swirls all around us. Swallowing hard, I shake my head.
“I know that it’s not your fault.”
“Then whose fucking fault is it that I beat him up so badly that he needed surgery for internal bleeding and had to stay at the hospital for weeks?” He screams, and I draw a deep breath. The regret and pain that I can see in his eyes tell me that he lost control and hurt someone even though he didn’t want to.
“It’s never okay to hurt anyone, but I know that you didn’t do it because you wanted to.” I say, moving closer to him again, and he glares at me. Wetting my dry lips, I continue to speak
“I might not know all about you, but I do know that you would never hurt Isaac. So I am guessing that whatever happened to you made you snap. Do you know why things like that happen?” I ask, placing my hand on his cheek, and he turns his head away. Damn stubborn man! I yell inside my head and grab his chin, turning his head back to me.
“You are going to look at me when I talk to you, understood?” I say using that voice I use when I play, and he presses his lips into a thin angry line but keeps his eyes on me.
“I know that you love him and that whatever happened to you is standing between the two of you. I know that you don’t want that, so let me help you. Talk to me.” I say in a softer tone while placing my free hand on his cheek and stroke him there.
“Jaxson, I know that I can be a total bitch sometimes, but I am here for you. Talk to me, please.” I whisper and see him swallow hard.
“My parents were drug addicts, heroin. My father worked for Max’s father. He did his dirty work, tortured and killed people more often than he was home. But when he was home, it was hell. My mother wasn’t a nice person. She beat me a lot but compared to my father then she was a fucking saint.” Swallowing hard, I blink fast, trying to hold back the images of a small boy being abused by those who should do nothing but protect him.
“When my father was home, all they did was drink and take more drugs. They mixed all kinds of shit and acted even worse than they usually did. My father either beat my mother or me. It always ended in the same way. He forced her to have sex, then he left and didn’t come back for days, sometimes weeks. She was a mess, of course, so she did more drugs. I basically took care of myself, but that isn’t the worst. Both Max and I were forced to come with our fathers to work sometimes. They wanted to make men out of us by forcing us to watch them kill people. I think I was about nine or ten the first time they brought us. I cried the whole time I watched them kill a man, and then I got punished for it. My father beat me badly that time. He broke my arm and two fingers. I never cried in front of him again.” He says, closing his eyes, and chills run up my spine as my imagination spins with all kinds of scenarios. But the look on Jaxsons face tells me that not even my worst imagination will cover what he has been forced to see.
“I am so sorry, Jaxson.” I whisper, my voice thick with emotions as I blink even faster, and he makes a snorting sound before he continues.
“When I became a teenager, I realized that I was not only attracted to girls but I also had a thing for some guys. I knew how my parents felt about homosexuality, so I never said a word about it to anyone because I was terrified of my father. I had seen what he was capable of numerous times, and I didn’t dare to go against him. At the same time I met Isaac, he was more sheltered from our lives. Sure his parents were involved with the Mafia but not as deep as mine. When I saw him for the first time, I knew, I just knew that it was him that I wanted. Still, I had girlfriends, and I was a complete ass. I was the tough guy everyone was scared of, the bad boy all the girls wanted, so I played around a lot. I kept several girls simultaneously, but I almost gave in to what I felt for Isaac every time I met him. And it got worse when it came out that he was bisexual. Soon all my thoughts were about the one thing I couldn’t have. Isaac. I wanted him. I wanted him so badly. But I was terrified of what would happen to Isaac if someone found out about my feelings for him. My father was higher in rank than Isaacs parents and a twisted bastard, so Isaac would probably have been killed. But I was curious so I started looking at gay porn, and got caught.”
He stiffens, his eyes turning sad and glazy, then he pulls away, turning his head away from me. I already understand where this is going, so I move closer to him, wrapping my arms around his neck. He might not want it, but there is that broken part inside him that needs it. He said it himself. He was the tough guy all the girls wanted. He still is that guy, only older, and he desperately needs someone to understand.
“Jaxson, it’s okay. Your father is not here. It’s just you and me. Well, the driver, but he can’t see or hear us, so he doesn’t count. But I understand, you got hurt, you lost control and reget it. I have been there, and I know it hurts, but you need to let it out. Open up. I am here.” He wraps his arms around me, squeezing me so hard that it gets hard to breathe, but I don’t say a word.
I let him hold me as his life depends on it because now I understand that he needs it, that whatever his father did was so bad that he now can’t live a normal life. My loss of control was far from as bad as Jaxsons, and I have never been abused as he has, but there was a time where my life could have taken a very dark turn. Luckily I found Maya and Jake. They have together, in different ways, been what kept me sane.
“Breathe with me.” I whisper against his neck, drawing a few deep breaths while letting my hands massage the tensed muscles in his shoulder, and after a while, I feel him breathe with me. Rewarding him, I press a soft kiss on his cheek.
“Tell me what happened next.” I whisper.
I want to throw her out of the car, I don’t want her here, but still, there’s no one else I want around me. There is something about this woman, something that both riles me up but also calms me, so the words keep coming along with the pictures inside my head.
“My mother found a gay porn magazine in my room, and I begged her not to tell my father. But she did.” I start, feeling myself get pulled back to that day when it all started.
FLASHBACK (Jaxson, fourteen years old)
“You disgusting piece of shit!” My father yells before the blow explodes across my cheek, and I fall to the floor. I lay completely still, hoping that he might forget that I am there, that his fucked up head will find something else to focus on, but this is not my lucky day. He grabs me by the back of my neck, hosting me in the air. I don’t make a sound. Tears and whining in pain are for pussies. I am not a pussy. But then why am I attracted to guys?
Another of his fists hits me, this time just below my ribs. Coughing, I double over, and he grabs my hair, pulling me up.
“Perhaps you need to get a taste to remember how fucked up you are?” He snarls in my face as spit is flying everywhere, and I glare at him.
“The only fucked up thing here is you!” I snap back, earning another punch to my ribs. Falling to my knees, I try to breathe, and while I do, he grabs both my hands and bends them behind my back. I try to yank them free, but I am already too late, and he’s too strong. He quickly ties my hands behind my back before forcing me up to my feet. Pointing at the couch, he says
“Bend over!” My whole body stiffens, and I stare at my father. It was many years since he stopped pulling down my pants and whip my ass with the belt.
“Now!” He screams, and I swallow hard, trying to wiggle loose my restrained hands, but it’s no use. My father is an expert on these things. Refusing to do as he says, I straighten my back and glare at him, and an evil smile spreads across his lips.
“Amber, get the boy’s magazine!” He bellows through the house, and I hear my mother hurry inside my room to grab the gay porn magazine on my bed. Less than one minute later, she stands in front of my father, holding it out to him.
“Place it on the couch, page eleven.” He snaps at her, and she almost runs over to do as he says. I watch her place the magazine on the couch, then she opens it and flips the pages until she reached page eleven, where one man is fucking another man in the ass. Unable to look away from the picture, I gulp, terrified of what will happen next.
“Open his pants!” He screams at my mother, and my mother looks at me with big eyes. I back away from her, knowing that she will do anything he tells him. But I don’t get far before my father grabs me and holds me still while my mother starts to open my pants.
“Don’t fucking touch me!” I scream, earning more blows to my face. I swallow down some of the blood and gag, almost throwing up on my mother as she manages to open my jeans.
“No, don’t.” I choke out when both of them pull my pants and boxers down in one swift movement.
“You know what to do, be a good whore!” He tells my mother, and I look at her shaking my head with tears in my eyes. I know that she’s just as scared as I am, but this must be the time where she says no. Right? She's my mother so she would never! But she doesn’t say no to him. I try to fight my father off, but like always, there’s no point, and soon he has me bend over as he wanted me, with my face pressed down against the magazine.
“What are you waiting for?” He screams at my mother, who makes a sound in fear.
“I am sorry.” She whispers and grabs hold of my penis. Nausea spreads inside me, and I struggle to get loose while screaming as loud as I can. But with Max’s father in charge and my father being who he is, I know that even if someone hears me, no one will come. I am all alone. My mother does as my father tells him, but no matter how much she tries, I can’t get hard, and I thank God for that. Angry, my father beats me repeatedly in the back, the pain burning my whole inside as his fists connect with my backside. When I am on the verge of losing consciousness, he stops, and then I feel his erection against my ass.
“No.” I whisper, but there’s nothing I can do to stop him from showing me what happens to disgusting people like me.
END OF FLASHBACK
Sucking in a deep breath, I stop speaking. The same nausea I felt that day is growing inside me, and I swallow and swallow, trying to keep it down. Looking at Liv, who is crying silent tears, I feel the anger take over, and I look away from her.
“I don’t want your pity.” I growl, and she closes the space between us, hugging me hard.