“Sir-” She wasn’t able to finish her sentence as he pulled out a gun and aimed it at her head, right between her eyes.
Some women in the café let out terrified screams as their male companions shielded them, eyeing the man and the gun wearily.
“Everybody out!” His voice seemed to waver less as he ordered them to clear out the café, but Izabella never let her gaze move from the metal object that could have ended her life at any given moment.
“Iza-” Amelia started but was cut off by the same man as he shouted at her to get out.
Izabella gave her a firm nod, trying to appear strong, but failing miserably as her bottom lip quivered.
Amelia finally left the café, giving her employee one last glance as a tear slipped out of her eye before walking out the door, the ringing bell being the only sound in the silent café.
“No-” Before the man could even finish his sentence, the huge glass window behind him shattered and there were multiple thuds.
The guy turned around, startled at the noise, but Izabella didn’t dare to move in fear of getting shot or injured.
Just as sudden as the glass shattering, the door of the café’s entrance flew off its hinges, knocking over quite a few tables, earning a small, frightened squeak from the female hostage.
She shut her eyes tightly, too scared to see what was happening.
“Step away from her.” A deep voice laced with intense anger and an accent she wasn’t too familiar with sounded.
There was a moment of complete silence before a hand gripped her forearm roughly, yanking her small frame into a chest that smelled of pure alcohol and cigarettes.
“N-no.” The man’s voice was quivering as he spoke and she felt his fear emanating from him in waves.
His fingers were twitching around her arm and she could feel his body shaking too.
It made her wonder just who had entered because they had to be super intimidating for this burly man to suddenly start squeaking like a mouse.
There was a faint click that sounded loud in the deadly silent café before the voice sounded once again.
“I’m not going to repeat myself. I’m sure you know the consequences of not obeying me.” Something cold was pressed against her temple for a few seconds before the man cried out in agony, his harsh grip releasing her arm as she heard him fall to the ground with a loud thud.
“Argh!” He exclaimed in what sounded to be affliction, she wasn’t too sure, but she didn’t dare open her eyes.
“You had your chance.” The voice sounded closer this time and she flinched just as a warm hand gently held the same arm her captor was holding.
“It’s okay now, fiore. Open those beautiful eyes of yours.” For some reason, she obeyed this person and when she did, she gasped at what she saw.
The same guy who was holding her at gun point was on the floor, a large piece of cloth stuck in his mouth and he was clutching his bleeding thigh as red liquid oozed from the injury.
“Oh my gosh! Are you okay? I-I’ll get the first aid kit.” Izabella made a move to go into the back room but was stopped by a hand sliding around her waist and pulling me into a firm chest, completely restricting her.
“You won’t help him, fiore. He deserves it.” The voice sent chills down her spine and for some reason, it wasn’t chills of fear and that made her nervous and confused.
“W-why? H-he’s bleeding.” She said quietly, looking down at the hand holding her up against the stranger’s chest and feeling her face warm up.
“This is only a small price for him to pay. Could anyone have done anything if he were to plant that bullet in your head?” His words made Izabella rethink her previous situation and tears filled her eyes as her entire faced paled.
“N-no.” She stuttered, terrified at the memory of it all.
His grip tightened around her waist, not enough to hurt her but enough to keep her secure and she was grateful since her knees were already like jelly.
“Sol Café. I made a mess.” His speech brought her out of her thoughts and she blinked rapidly, trying to control her tears, but failed as one slipped past her moist eyelid and landed right on her saviour’s arm.
She felt him stiffen before shuffling a bit and turning her around.
Izabella kept her head downing, staring at the blurry images of his black suit pants and dress shoes.
“Fiore.” He spoke softly, his fingers creeping under her chin and raising her head up.
She shut her eyes and inhaled deeply, willing herself not to cry and look anymore pathetic than she already did in front of the strange man.
She felt a soft finger gently graze under her eyes, wiping away her tears no doubt before he tapped the corners of her eyes, wordlessly asking her to open them and she did without a second thought.
“There they are. Those lovely eyes of yours.” He gave her a dazzling smile and she was taken aback by how incredibly handsome this man was, the colour in her cheeks returning the longer her beautiful saviour stared into her eyes.
His grey-green eyes stared back at her, displaying many unspoken emotions.
His face seemed familiar to her but she couldn’t quite place her finger on it.
The light stubble he had growing did him wonders as it gave him that manly look, complementing his deep voice and intimidating looks as well as his huge frame which towered over her by at least a foot above her.
“You’re okay now, fiore. He can’t hurt you.” He pulled her into his chest just as three men came through the door.
“It’s okay, fiore.” He said soothingly, his deep voice washing over her in calming waves as his hand came up to her hair, running his lengthy fingers through it. The warmth radiating from him surrounded her and she smiled faintly.
Izabella sighed quietly before abruptly pulling away, not understanding why she felt safe and comfortable in his hold.
“Che cosa è?” (What is it?)
He asked and she gave him a perplexed look.
“What?” He shook his head and turned to his men.
“Affrettatevi!” (Hurry up!)
He spoke to the men and they acknowledged him with slight nods.
“Sì, signore.” (Yes, sir.)
They replied as a black escalade drove up to the shattered window and they threw the bodies in.
“A-are they d-dead?” She found herself speaking before she could second-guess herself and her eyes turned saucers as the handsome man turned to look at her with a look she couldn’t quite understand.
He stepped closer to her, his eyes glued to a few loose strands at the side of her face before he raised his hand and brushed it behind her ear.
“No. They’re just sedated.” Izabella nodded as her eyes shifted to two men carrying her now unconscious attacker.
She watched as they threw his body into the backseat of the vehicle, his body limp on top of the others.
“What-are you going to kill them?” She questioned once again and he shook his head.
“Would you like me to?”