Academy of the Rose (Rose Book 3)

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Chapter Fourteen

I couldn’t bring myself to get back to normal as we all made our way home, everyone was tense, but I couldn’t help feeling the rage inside me.

“What are you planning Sam?” Luka walked up to me as I sipped on a beer on the beach.

“You and Taylor should run the school” I said as he looked at me wide-eyed.

“Why? That’s yours not mine” He asked sitting beside me.

“Midnight Rose…That’s why. It truly is in my blood and I can’t escape it. I have to take over…We have to change things” I sighed.

“What about Cody?”

“He’ll be the safest kid in the world, he has a lot of people watching over him” I replied.

“You’re not going back home” Luka shook his head.

“Not permanently, but for a while, until I can get everything sorted out and people I can trust to deal with things over there, I have no choice”

“Let me do it” he said.

“No, this is my mess, you need to be here with your wife and child” I shook my head taking another sip.

“And you have a child and your whole family here!” He shouted.

“I won’t argue with you Luka, I will go and sort out loose ends and bring it all over, I swear, Midnight Rose will move locations, I’ll deal with it” I said angrily as I got up and walked away.

“And where will Cody be while you do this?” He asked as I paused.

“Here, he’s safer here” I sighed as I continued on up the stairs.

“You can’t do this Samantha! I won’t let you!” Luka caught up to me as I entered the house.

“I have no other choice!” I shouted as we got the attention of everyone in the house.

“You always have a choice! Screw the Midnight Rose! Let it burn like you said once!” Luka stormed up to me.

“What’s going on here?” Shaun walked slowly into the room.

“Oh for god sake, don’t you start. Luka is just trying to persuade me to let the mafia burn. Our father is dead and it’s all mine, I need to deal with this!”

“You’re leaving!” Shaun’s face went red with anger.

“For a little while” I nodded.

“You’re not going anywhere Samantha we won’t let you” Savannah came in behind them holding my baby boy as she placed him in my arms.

“Savannah, don’t, please take him, I can’t be the mother he needs” I whimpered.

She just backed off and shook her head.

“No, you can be everything he needs, you cannot abandon him, what would Tom and Bradley think, what about the twin he’s missing? You can do them proud, prove to everyone you are strong without the mafia life over your head. Let someone else deal with it” She said.

Sadness flooded my heart as I realised what I was doing, I was abandoning my family for the mafia that had destroyed me piece by piece, but I couldn’t help feeling it was my mission to save the Midnight Rose.

“I…I…I need to go for a ride” I said as I passed Cody over to Savannah so quickly she had no choice but to take him or he would have fallen to the floor.

“You’re not going alone kitten” Jayden stepped in front of me.

“Fine” I groaned as he followed me and tossed me a new set of keys.

“Replacement bike is outside for you” he smirked as I saw a replica of my own that I had lost as I squealed happily.

“Who did this?” I asked.

“Taylor, Tobias and I sorted it out” He said as I leapt up to him and hugged him.

“Thank you” I smile.

“Your mood swings are really scary sometimes” He laughed noticing the shift in mood.

I quickly mounted my new bike and heard the familiar rumble of the bike as I smiled and put on my helmet as Jayden and I raced off.

He signalled for me to follow him as we went through winding roads, higher and higher up a steep hill until he parked at the peak, shutting off the engine.

“Why did you bring me here?” I asked as I took off my helmet and looked towards Jayden as he leant against his bike and looked out towards the beautiful views that surrounded us.

“This is the place I always come to think, I thought you could do with some time away from the crazy world, a place that you could come to if you needed the peace, you’ll have to share it with me from time to time though” He smiled sweetly as I walked up to him and stood beside him.

“You’re not going to chastise me like everyone else?”

“No, you’ll do what you want in the end, no matter what anyone says. My kickass kitten with a temper” He smirked.

“I don’t know what I’m doing anymore, I’ve lost myself in all this madness, it’s all so much. I feel like I’m not the best role model for my boy, I’m broken, he’s lost his daddy and his twin, all because of the life I live” I sighed.

“You know what I think? I think you’re a brave young woman who has been through way too much and you know exactly what you want to do but what you want and need to do are two very different things. You want away from the Midnight Rose, but you feel the need to fix it. You need your family by your side but want to be perfect for everyone. But no one cares about the imperfections, we all have days where we lose control, you have to own it” He said, and I looked into his eyes as his bore into mine.

“I want to be happy, but I need to protect everyone, I want to be a happy family, but I need to fix things that could ruin that happiness. But, I’m broken myself, how do I fix anything when I can’t even fix myself?”

“You don’t have to do it all alone, we can all help you. From here, we can do it all together. You’re not alone Samantha, we all love you” He said moving a lock of my hair around my ear, looking between my eyes and my lips as he got closer.

“Don’t…” I sighed as I backed up and placed a hand on his chest.

“Why?” He asked.

“I’ve lost the last two men I fell in love with and it was only recently that Tom died. Yes, our relationship was on the rocks, but I still loved him. I can’t fall again Jayden. I won’t hurt you more by letting you go for me when I’m so broken right now” I said.

“Kitten, I get it, it’s early and I’ll wait for you I swear, don’t push me away. Don’t push any of us away when we just want to love you. I didn’t know Tom, but I think he’d want you to be happy. What would make you happy?” He says taking my hand in his as I looked at it, my heart was so confused by the electric shock that went through me with his touch.

“Honestly, seeing my child grow up, being with my family who love me, falling in love and them not dying on me, having a little normality, go on dates, go to the cinema, have fun, not looking over my shoulder every moment of the day” I sighed.

“That’s all doable, we can do that together, all of us” He smiled.

“How?” I asked.

“Stay here with us and we’ll deal with the mafia from here, worse ways we’ll set up a few meetings over there and go as a group together, it’s not all on you. You will then be with Cody and watch him grow. We all want you home with us. You will fall in love again and while I can’t promise whoever you fall for won’t die, I can promise they will try their best to stay by your side. And as for normality, I’m pretty sure we can all do that, the others miss it too, we could all do with a fun night out. You’re not alone, you don’t have to look over your shoulder every damned day, spread the load and we can help.” He said as a tear fell from my cheek and he caught it with his thumb and caressed my cheek.

“Thank you Jayden” I said as I suddenly embraced him, my head buried in his chest.

“I love you Kitten” He sighed as I looked up to him in shock.

“What?” I said faintly.

“I know, you need time, but I love you, you’re beautiful, brave, funny, smart, kinda scary sometimes and unbelievably perfect for me. I will wait for you if you’ll take a chance on me.” He said.

He loved me… I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, was it wrong that I felt for him, that somewhere inside I felt for him too.

Tom hadn’t long been dead and I was already feeling for Jayden, yeah we had a connection since we first met, even if it was hatred that first day, but that seemed to be a common trait to guys I fell for, I went for the bad boy, so cliché…

But part of me felt Tom was just a replacement for Bradley, being brothers I saw the similarities, what would people think of me if I began to date Jayden?

“I…can we just…” I stammered.

“Go slow?” He smiled.

“Yes, can we do it like a normal couple, go on dates, you know get to know each other better”

“Of course, but can I do one thing?” He said as I nodded.

He took a step closer as my heart began to beat faster, tucking my hair back behind my ear once more before slowly and gently placing a kiss on my lips as it sent a tingle through my body and I kissed him back my arms around his neck as we got closer.

“Wow” I said as we pulled apart.

“Wow indeed, you’re going to be the death of me kitten” he said before looking shocked at what he just said as I just giggled.

“Please no more death, I can’t lose you too” I giggled.

“You won’t lose me I’m not going anywhere” He said as he put his arm around me, and we just looked out towards the horizon as the sun began to set.

“Thank you for this Jayden, you’ve really helped calm down the mess in my brain, but I can’t promise that I won’t be a little crazy sometimes.” I smiled as we began to get back on our bikes.

“I’ll be here even through the crazy” He smiled and revved his bike as we tore down the road.

I felt free for a change, he managed to calm my brain where no one else could, he helped me realise what I needed to do.

I had some apologising to do for my family too.

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