Chapter 10 - Alexandria
Alex slowly woke, to the feeling that she wasn’t alone. Someone was gently stroking her hair. She peeled her eyes open cautiously, having no idea who it was. She was half afraid it was Chuck.
She was shocked when she saw Mario, staring back at her. She blinked a couple times, just to see if she was dreaming, but he was still there. He was kneeling down, right beside her bed, making it so he was almost eye level with her.
“Mario,” she whispered curiously.
“Yeah Angel,” he replied softly, as he continued to stroke her hair. She cringed at the use of the old nickname he used to call her.
“Why are you here,” she asked him.
“Because you need me,” he answered immediately.
“I don’t need you,” she quickly defended. “I’m doing fine without you.”
“Uh huh,” he quietly said. She frowned at his words.
“This is just a small blip in life,” she tried again. “I’m getting out of here,” she whispered. “I’m going to find somewhere better, find somewhere I belong.”
“You belong with me,” he growled. She frowned at him again.
“You never wanted me,” she said softly, as a tear fell from her eye.
“I always wanted you, and I always will,” he growled again.
“I don’t understand,” she said sadly.
“You don’t have to,” he replied. “We’ll have a long talk, but not until you’re feeling better,” he ordered. “Let’s get you up,” he said. “It’s freezing in here, and I want to get your head looked at.”
“It hurts,” she told him quietly.
“I know Angel, but I promise you, I’ll take care of you,” he said as he leaned down and kissed her forehead.
Alex was completely confused. Mario had told her he didn’t love her anymore. She hadn’t even seen him in years. But here he was, kissing her head and telling her she belonged with him. She didn’t understand, but right now she was completely out of options, and after the attack she was afraid.
With Mario’s help, she got herself into a sitting position, but her head spun. She closed her eyes, and gripped the sides of the bed.
“You okay,” Mario asked, as he put his arm around her back.
“A bit dizzy,” she admitted. Then she looked down, to see her sweatshirt was gaping open where it was torn. She grabbed at it embarrassed, and tried to pull the edges closed.
Mario ripped a blanket off the bed, and wrapped it around her. She clung to it, as she leaned back against him. He picked her up and started to head to the door.
“You won’t be back here,” he swore.
“Wait,” she cried. “Put me down for a minute,” she begged. He did as she asked, and she grabbed onto the wall for support.
Slowly, she moved to the back of the shed, and pushed into the opening between the wall and the water heater. She swayed again, but Mario was there to catch her. She crouched down, and lifted up the loose floor board. Reaching in, she pulled out the box she kept in there.
“What is it,” Mario asked curiously.
“It’s all the money I have,” she told him. “It also has some pictures of my parents and me, and their wedding rings,” she whispered. She clutched the box, and tried to stand again, but she fell against the wall.
Mario swore and picked her up again. “I’ll send a man to get your bags later,” he promised. She nodded, and leaned her head against his chest. No matter how much he had hurt her, she still trusted him.
He carried her outside, and crossed the parking lot to his car. Somehow, he managed to keep her in his arms, as he unlocked the door and placed her on the seat. The car was warm and it smelled like him. She watched as he rounded it and climbed in the drivers side.
Mario started the car, and pulled out of the parking lot. She watched him drive, and knew she should be concerned about the determined look on his face, but right now she didn’t care. She closed her eyes, and wondered if maybe she was getting a second chance. It was her last thought, before she fell asleep.