“You would like me to believe that my daughter is part of a mafia-like gang! What the hell is wrong with that man! How dare he treat my daughter like a slave to his whims! I’m going to kill your grandfather when I see him! He’s the reason your mother is dead, and he would have got you killed too! Why didn’t you tell me?!” my fathers’ face was bright red with anger.
“You left me at that school! He saved me! He taught me to be strong, he stopped me when I tried to kill myself…” I looked at him shocked, I didn’t mean to tell him that…
I was twelve and the nightmares had returned. I remembered the accident in which my mother had died.
I was in the seat next to her, we had gone for ice cream, our monthly mother-daughter treat when we were driving through a patch of trees.
Suddenly, there was two huge cars, one on either side of us.
“Sam hold on, keep your head down. I love you sweetie” My mother cried out just before everything went crazy.
Glass breaking, gun shots ringing in my ears, screams, I wasn’t sure whether it was mine or my mothers, maybe both.
And then it stopped as we crashed into a tree.
“Mum…” I cried as I saw her covered in blood.
“Shh, stay quiet, play dead sweetheart. Know I love you” she whimpered as I cried.
A man came around the car, his big black boots crunching against the glass.
“You should never have crossed me Louisa” The mans gruff voice sounded and then a scream and a final gunshot.
Silence was all that filled the air for ages until the sudden sound of sirens.
I woke up to that nightmare for the hundredth time and I had had enough of it. Nothing was worth living through that nightmare anymore. My father had abandoned me, brother never came to see me and the only person who cared was Taylor, but he could stick up for himself now, he didn’t need me.
I walked to my bathroom and smashed my fist into the bathroom mirror taking a piece of the broken mirror, tears falling from my eyes as I slid it down my wrist.
“Sam no!” My Grandfathers voice called as he found me on my bathroom floor.
The next few months I was given counselling and was never left on my own, my grandfather gave me a sense of purpose, he told me the truth about my lineage. A mafia family and now I would join it, continuing the line.
“You never told me… Your grandfather…. Karlos! In here now!” He screamed out as my uncle ran into the room.
“Greg?” He said unsure as he saw me upset and on the floor.
“Would you like to tell me why no one notified me of my daughter trying to kill herself!” He gave my uncle a look, which if looks could kill, he’d be 20feet under.
“I…Uhh…” he stammered.
“She what?” Damien rounded the corner.
Oh no, everyone was going to find out now.
“I…need…to go” I said as I took my heels off and took off running as quick as I could from the house.
“Sam! Come back!” My uncle shouted trying to run after me, but I was quicker on my feet, running off into the darkness.
Minutes turned into hours and my phone had gone dead, I had stopped to rest in the old abandoned park I once played in.
Laying on a bench crying myself until I was so worn out, I fell asleep, nightmares plaguing me.
“Hey Sam, turn the music up!” Jake said while we were driving in his truck, him, Taylor and Jake’s sister Laney were driving back home after graduation from school.
“School is over!” Laney shouted excitedly.
I laughed hard turning up the music.
A car horn beeped before it took over but stopped just ahead of us.
“Taylor” I warned, giving him a look that read trouble was afoot.
“Jake, turn around” He warned looking out the window at the blacked-out car in front of us.
“I can’t” He stammered looking behind.
“Shit” I grabbed the gun I had hidden in my boots and Taylor did the same.
“What the hell? Where did you get those?!” Laney screamed.
I made a quick call to my grandfather.
“I need back up. Two blacked-out cars one behind us, one in front. We’ve got nowhere to go!” I shout quickly not hearing his reply before the sounds of gunshots.
“We have to get out of here now!” I shout dragging Jake and Laney to the side of the truck.
“On three we run into the trees. Sam cover fire” Taylor ordered as he tried to calm Jake and Laney.
Guns shooting, Laney screaming, a body on the floor, more cars, more guns until silence.
“Taylor?!” I scream.
“Sam” Taylors voice called from a few feet away.
“Oh shit! No!” I saw the blood below him and then the bodies, Jake and Laney were dead, shot in the chest and head.
“We have to go Sam, come on. Taylor with me now!” My grandfathers voice called as he suddenly turned up and dragged us away from the scene.
“Sam! Oh, thank god. Sam! Wake up!” A voice shouted near me.
“No! Jake! Laney!” I scream out waking up from the nightmare to be faced with Bradley trying to wake me, worry flooding his face.
“Br…Brad…Bradley” I cry out as he hushes me to soothe me.
“You’re safe, it’s ok” He hugs me as he reaches into his pocket to grab his phone before dialing.
“I’ve found her, the old rec, what do you think, she’s a wreck. You would be too if you had been through what she had! Just get here!” He shouted.
“I’m sorry” I whimpered.
“Don’t you dare apologize. You can have a meltdown. I just wished that you have taken someone with you or come to me at least” he hugged me close.
A car rushed into the car park as Bradley picked me up and carried me to it.
“What the bloody hell were you thinking!” Wayne shouted at me.
“We were worried sick” James added.
“Enough” Bradley demanded, and they shut up instantly.
“How mad is my dad?” I ask timidly.
“Furious, but not with you. Your Grandpa is here, talking with him and the others” Brian said as I flinched at the mention of Grandpa being here.
“I’m in deep trouble now, huh” I grumbled as Bradley took my hand in his, warmth flooding my hand as I smile timidly at him.
“Samantha Jones! Get here right now!” My Grandfathers voice boomed through the house and out to where I had just got out of the car.
I cringed but Bradley didn’t leave my side, the others stayed in the car.
“You insufferable, insolent, stupid girl! What were you thinking?! Every piece of training I gave you, you completely disregard! What if they hadn’t found you? What if the enemy HAD! Do you want to end up like your mother? Do you think I wish to lose yet another family member?!” My grandfather shouted.
“I’m sorry” I hung my head, tears falling still.
“Not good enough!” He shouted in my face.
“Get away from my daughter” my dad turned my grandfather around to face him, my eyes went wide with fear.
“Dad, no” I whimpered. But it was too late, he punched grandpa right in the jaw. Everyone stood in shock.
But the hits didn’t stop.
“Dad! Stop!” I screamed trying to get him off him. Fury flooded his eyes.
“Guys!” I shouted getting them to help me as we dragged my father up and away, Bradley and Brian holding him down as the guys had heard the commotion.
“Go get the first aid kit” I told Wayne as he sprinted off to the car.
“Get off me! Right now!” My dad shouted. But they had him pinned.
“Enough Dad, you’ve got to calm down” Jason said fronting him.
“Calm down! Calm down! How can you say that? Aren’t you angry at him? He is the reason your mother is dead; he is the reason your sister could have died!”
I took the first aid kit off Wayne when he returned and started to clean up my Grandpa’s face in silence.
“What are you thinking Sam?” Grandpa asked.
“This is so fucked up” I murmured shaking my head.
“Is that how you feel about how I’ve raised you? Are you angry with me too?” He looked me in the eyes.
“No. You were there for me. You made me strong. The gang, is a little scary, always has been, but it’s a part of her, she knew it inside and out, I want to make Mum proud” I answer, and I hear my Dad quieten down, listening.
“Samantha, do you enjoy being in the gang?” Dad asks.
“It’s not a matter of enjoying it. I protect, I serve, and I make decisions that best suit the situation. I’ve never hurt someone who didn’t deserve it.” I reply.
“Have…have you ever killed someone?” Jason asked as I turned to him.
“She wouldn’t kill a fly. She uses the persons fear against them, her words, her stature. She’s never killed a soul. That’s not what we try to do here” Bradley answered for me.
“There is only one person I will kill, and it will happen when I find them” I add.
“Who?” Damien asked.
“The man that killed my mother, Luka”
“Boys let Greg go, he’s calmed now. I trust you won’t hit me again” Grandpa looked at him sternly as my father nodded.
I finished cleaning Grandpa up and then we all got up to sit around the dining table. My team all stood around us, like bodyguards ready to stop a fight in a moments’ notice.
“This is so crazy” Jason muttered. I smiled painfully as I took his hand in mine.
“It’s not so bad when you get used to it” I reply.
“Your daughter is a strong woman now Gregory, she’s not the little girl you abandoned in the boarding school. She’s been through more than you know” Grandpa looked at my father.
“Dad, I’m ok. I’m better now, stronger” I take his hand across the table as he looked into my eyes and sighed.
“I didn’t want to send you there. I just… I didn’t know how to deal with everything. You reminded me so much of her and now, your more like her than you ever were. She was a strong, beautiful woman who could demand attention in the room in an instant. She always had a look about her that said she had looked at every inch of a room as if she was scouting it…”
“Sam does that, I noticed at the party” Damien added.
“But to know now that she was part of something, this, this huge is something I am struggling to get around. But if this is what made you into the woman you are today, and you promise to always come home to me. I will accept it” my dad continued.
“I’m not going anywhere dad. I might fly the coup one day, but I will always come home, you’re not losing me” I reply.
“Good, now that is sorted, I have business to attend to. I take that you can explain everything else Sam?” Grandpa stood and I nodded, still looking at my father who looked defeated.
“I’m sorry Jon” My dad stood, shaking my Grandpa’s hand.
“It’s ok son, you were just protecting your little girl. Nothing I wouldn’t have done for Louisa. Sam’s so like her in so many ways, spitting image too. Good-bye boys take care of my granddaughter” he nodded at the guys and they all stood to attention answering with a ‘Yes, Sir’.
“So, my sisters a lean, mean killing machine?” Jase smirked
“Oh yeah, this girl can fight, broke my nose when I first met her” Bradley said taking a seat next to me.
“That was so your fault” I smirked as the guys all chuckled.
“I think it’s about time we all got some sleep. It’s been a very long night.” Karlos uttered as we all came into agreement.
“Night sis” Jase kissed my head before heading upstairs as one by one everyone left the room except myself, my team and Karlos.
“That was…eventful” I sighed into the sofa, suddenly exhausted.
“That was exactly how I thought your father would react. Big head. Never could control his anger.” Karlos rolled his eyes.
“Guys, go home, I’m going to stay with Sam for a while” Bradley told the others as they all nodded and said good night before going home.
“How are you going to get home?” I whispered tiredly.
“He can sleep here. I’ll take him home in the morning. Good night kids” Karlos ruffled my hair and left us in the lounge alone.
“You scared me Peach. Don’t run off like that ever again” Bradley whispered into my hair as he took me in his arms.
“I’m sorry, I couldn’t take any more. I needed out, it was claustrophobic” I answered sighing into his chest, suddenly relaxed.
“I get it, but you could have got hurt. What if Luka found you? You were vulnerable tonight Sam. I couldn’t stand it if we had lost you. If I lost you” he hugged me tighter.
“Why? Why do you care so much? I broke your nose, I’m your kid boss, I…” I began.
“Why do I care so much? Well, you are the strongest woman I have ever known, you have beaten the odds against everything you have ever gone up against, you’re beautiful, your funny, your smart and a total peach. Don’t forget you look totally hot standing there with a gun in your hand, fierce” He winked at me and I felt butterflies in my stomach.
His hand reached to cup my face, his thumb wiping away the fragments of tears that were left before slowly drifting forwards. Our lips meet softly and suddenly I’m smiling into the kiss. My first kiss.
“Stop blushing” He smiled as he backed out of the kiss. I bit my lip blushing brighter.
“You can stop doing that too, you’re killing me here Sam” He moaned dropping backwards to lay against the sofa, I giggled, a proper girly giggle I’ve never done before.
“That’s so cute” He said smirking before getting back up and kissing me again, this time harder and more passionately.
When we finished kissing, I turned around sitting between his legs, laying into him while he wrapped his arms around me.
“Crazy day” I sighed before falling asleep in his arms.
“Crazy, but one of the best, I love you Peach” He whispered as I fell asleep completely missing what Bradley said.