The sound of a timer brought me back to the present reminding me what I was doing as I was staring off into space. Bending down with oven mitts I took a couple of pies out of the oven and placed them on the counter.
Glancing over at the clock it read just past midnight, I always worked the graveyard shift at the 24 hour diner. I didn’t mind these hours, it was rarely busy so I was able to experiment with different types of recipes. Getting paid while thinking about the possibility of opening my own bakery was the perfect job plus I rarely have to talk to anyone.
Even after five years of being Drya, Detective Esposito said to live everyday like I had become her. I felt exhausted and lonely, unsure if this will ever end. The people I am running from are in more power, rendering police useless and even though they have stopped looking for me there was no denying that if they knew where I was they would put a bullet in my head.
So, I have moved to over twelve different locations in the past five years, never getting close to anyone. Just constantly on the move thinking about where I should move to next. Usually I just threw a dart at the board or walked to random train station and looked to see where the next train was going.
Placing the pies on the cooling rack I glance over at the clock again. 12:13. He would be here in a couple minutes, he always came at 12:15 on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays either to stay or take something to his club. I grabbed what he would eat and moved to the front.
When I met him I was terrified, wondering what kind of MC he was a part of and as a result I had dropped the special order he was picking up. I had expected him to yell or shoot me but he just said it was okay since it was for a luna party then proceeded to help me clean up the mess I made. His club must really like their dogs if they have parties for them. Thankfully I had been practicing macarons and a new cake recipe so he took that happily. I thought that would have been the last time I would see him but then he came again that week and again and again. Soon he became a regular and I started doing what I am doing now… Checking the clock waiting for the tall biker to walk in.
I wasn’t supposed to meet anyone, get close to anyone but I found myself making an exception whenever he walked in. Thoughts about whether I should run filled my head but he was calm, a calmness that I felt spread to me and I wanted to keep. As he kept coming I got more and more suspicious but he doesn’t carry any guns, if he did then I would run. Soon I found myself no longer flinching and jumping whenever he spoke or moved and every so often I would see a small smile on his face; as if he was coming just to see me no longer be scared of him. However, even though he is a Rider of Silence who are on the good list of MCs, I still need to be cautious. I have already been here six months so it’s almost time to relocate.
Sounds of a bell rang as the door opened and I tried to hide the small smile that formed on my face. Looking over my shoulder he strolled in heading right for the counter sitting where he always sits.
“The usual?” I asked him as he smiled at me.
“Thank you Drya.” Ryker said with a nod. We rarely spoke, it was me who determined the pace of conversation but I had learned his name from the patch on his cut. Once he found out I made testers at this hour he tries those instead of the regular meals which somehow got me more comfortable around him to talk more than a few words.
I usually didn’t care much for looking at other people but there had always been something about Ryker since the first time he has walked in. He was glorious, there was no denying his soft looking hair, beautiful eyes and muscular body but it was also his calm demanding demeanour that drew my gaze. The second he walks in I want to be near him, just putting myself at ease beside him.
I grabbed the coffee pot pouring him a cup and placed the new dessert I created in front of him.
“What have you created now?” Ryker asked making my thighs clench together as he started to eat. He was a complete god in that leather of his, that deep voice that shook my body despite my protests against it.
“It is a blueberry, salted caramel and vanilla bean cream mini pavlova which is a meringue but softer and whipped cream dessert. Is it okay? Oh god-” I quickly started panicking moving to take it away from him.
He pulled the plate towards him, catching my hand as I tried to swipe it sending heat across my body from his touch as I looked at him through my eyelashes. Slowly his hands released me as he looked at me, his eyes darken before he took another bite and I found myself missing his touch.
“It’s good, the meringue is easy to cut through and the vanilla cream isn’t too sweet so the dessert isn’t overpowering but the right amount of sweetness. The blueberries add a nice refreshing aspect and the salt of the caramel brings it all together.”
“Where did you learn to talk like that?” I asked bewildered, he usually just told me if it was good or not, yet tonight he was listing everything out and how they work together.
He shrugged taking another bike, “it’s how they talk on bake off.”
“You watch Great British Bake Off? You? MC biker, Sergeant of Arms.” I had to press my lips together to stop a chuckle as I looked at Ryker in his Riders cut, knives strapped to him and badass aura.
“Don’t typecast us, beside I have to know what I am supposed to be looking for when I am eating these. And it’s perfect, you are too good for this world.” He smiled leaning back taking a sip of his coffee calming the nerves I had, worried that what I made was horrible.
“Thank you and sorry… Wait my baking determines my worth?” I asked breathlessly getting lost in those dark eyes of his.
“It tells me who you are.”
“Maybe I am only showing my good side?” I asked, my voice laced with skepticism as I leaned back against the counter behind me. I enjoyed being just a baker with him, only showing the side I want to be or who I used to be, forgetting the life I am running from. Thinking of him as a customer not an MC member. Just two people at a diner.
His lips curled into a small smile as he leaned back with his coffee, “I doubt it. How has baking been going, not burning your fingers as often I hope.”
My lips pressed together to hide the small smile as I shrugged, “It’s going as it always is. Testing new recipes and seeing what else I could create. Nothing special.”
“You really should be working at a bakery not a diner. You have serious skills Drya.”
I shuffled against the counter looking at him, his calmness affecting me as always but he was getting too personal and I needed to change that. “How is the brother who tried motor-cross?”
He shook his head, “dam fool wrecked the bike and nearly cracked his head open when taking his jumps. Dam adrenaline junkie. Don’t do anything like that, I don’t want to have to come get you at 2am because you can’t see straight.”
“I’ll keep away from motor-cross, never been on a bike before so I won’t start with bike tricks.”
Ryker’s mouth went into a smirk making my legs rub together, “I can change that fact.”
I felt my cheeks blush as I looked away from him for a quick second before I looked back missing his eyes, “Not sure about that.”
“Scared?” Of getting close to you? Horrified.
My hands went to readjustice my bun as I pressed my lips hard against each other to keep myself from responding as his gaze intensified on me. It was as if he was trying to read me, when we did talk I never talked about myself, it was too dangerous and he seemed to be someone who paid attention to every deal; if I slipped up he would know.
I had to get away from him before I found myself telling him everything.
With a nod I headed back into the small kitchen taking out small salted honey, lavender, vanilla and pear tarts. I placed four on the cooling rack then took the last two and put them in a box before heading back to the front.
“I’ll be there soon Briac.” Ryker said before hanging up his phone while walking to where I was standing behind the register. “Got to head out, keep the change.”
He passed me a twenty but before he could turn I passed him the two tarts, “Let me know if I am still too good for this world.” Ryker’s hand went up making me suck in a breath as his thumb brushed over my cheek.
“You always have flour on you, have a good night Drya.” He said gently before turning towards the door before he stopped, “and let me know if you change your mind about that bike ride.”
With a wink he was out of the door heading to his harley. My arms found themselves leaning against the counter as I watched his movements, an unsteady breath being released from his contact. I wasn’t sure what was wrong with me, every part of me screamed to go after him, to talk more with him. Instead no, for months he comes in, I give him food and then he leaves with me saying only necessary words to him. So far being in this city he has been the only one I have actually felt comfortable being around without worrying they may kill me. It didn’t matter, it’s as if I keep having this conversation with myself. I can’t get close to anyone if I do I put myself and them at risk.
The sounds of gunfire and screams started to echo in my head threatening to take me back to that place five years ago. Shaking my head I took my mind out of the memories to prevent a panic attack looking back out of the window at Ryker, hoping for the calmness he always gives me.
He swung onto his bike, settling on his seat before turning to see me creeping on him. Heat rushed onto my face and I swung around not so subtly to start to busy myself around the place hearing the bike pull out.
You are too good for this world…
I can’t even tell you who I am.