The Red Dahlia

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Chapter 11- His leader-


Soon, we reached Taylor's office and were met with both him and River. These kind of meetings weren't something unusual. They would happen once or twice a week to discuss the current events of the gang and to make sure everyone behaves.
I kind of hated these meetings. Not because I didn't care about my gang and family, I did, but to be honest they were kind of boring. Taylor was still older and more experienced than us, so I attended only for him.
"Morning Rayna, and Ryer." Taylor said with his serious and professional voice. Outside the gang world, he was a sweetheart. But when it came to business, he was a true business man and loyal gang member.
"Morning Mr. Lockwood, River." Ryer said.
"Guess it's my turn now. Good morning Taylor and brother dearest." I exclaimed enthusiastically in hopes to annoy River. I loved my big bro, but teasing him was my favorite past time. And he knew it.
Everyone laughed at me referring to River as brother dearest, except for him. He knew how much I loved him, but he still wanted to keep his image of the big, bad leader so, he would always get pissed at me.
"Please, stop calling me that you know I hate it." he whined.
"I know. That's why I do it in the first place. I just love annoying you. And as much as tempting the offer for me to stop is, sorry bro but no can do. You will have to kill me first." I said with a smirk.
Ryer and Taylor were literally crying out of laughter, while River was as red as hell, ready to rip my head off.
"Okay, kids. Back to business. Do you know why I called you here today Rayna?" Taylor asked me, after the laughter fit was over.
"I thought that this would be just a normal meeting like any other?" I asked confused.
He was ready to answer, when Damon and Jason entered the office. I was a little surprised because, usually it's only us three. Especially now, because Damon and Jason were newly added.
"Uh, not really no. What are Damon and Jason doing here? Not that I mind, I like you guys, but I'm just wondering." I said.
"Well Rayna, I gathered you here today because I wanted to discuss with both you and River, the boy's departments in the gang. You know, shooting, trafficking, hacking etc." Taylor explained.
"Ah, yes I totally forgot about that. So, have you decided what their department will be?" I asked being professional.
"That's why we wanted you here Rayna. We want you to choose." River replied.
"Wait, what? You want me to decide? But, you are a leader as well, I can't make the decision on my own. It wouldn't be fair." I told River shocked.
He wanted me to decide? I was utterly shocked. I didn't expect this at all.
"Sis, you are the co-leader of this gang and you know how much your opinion and judgement mean to me. Also, you were the one who accepted the boys in our family in the first place, so it would only be fair if you do it." he said with a smile.
"I agree with your brother Rayna. If anyone is suitable to choose, then that person is definitely you." Taylor agreed.
"And we second that Rayna. We don't know you for long, but we can already tell that you will do what's best for us." Damon and Jason said in unison with a smile.
All of their words made so happy. Dare I say, even moved me in a good way always. Though, I didn't know what Ryer was thinking. He had been all quiet after my catcalling with River, and I was kind of worried. What if he didn't agree? What if he was completely opposed to it? I couldn't help but think all the ways that this thing could go wrong.
His voice cut me off before I had the chance to think about anything else negative.
"From my behalf, I find that an amazing idea as well Rayna. I mean, from what I have already seen, you are an outstanding leader and person, and I would love any department you give me." he said flashing me one his infamous smiles.
His words had made me so happy and had given me so much confidence, that I decided to do what everyone was encouraging me to.
"Fine. You all convinced me. I'll do it. So, Damon you will join our device hacking squad, and don't worry if you have no idea what to do. Our top hacker Ryan, will help you with anything you need. Next, Jason you will be in charge of the shipments and deals along with Jake Lockwood, Taylor's son. And lastly, Ryer you will be training in shooting and martial arts with me. Actually, I will be the one to train you, no need to worry I'm the best when it comes to guns. Are we clear people?" I asked.
I felt great after giving the boys their departments. I made sure that each of them, would be chosen in something that would be suitable for them and also beneficial for our gang. I trusted these boys with my life and I was more than sure that they would make me proud.
"Wow, Rayna! I don't think I could have done better than you in this. You chose wisely for each member and for that I'm very proud of you." Taylor said with a smile. I was so happy to hear those words come from him. They were everything. He was my role model and second dad and I was so happy to have him in my life.
Must have been the excitement of the moment or something, because suddenly, I teared up and run up to hug him. He held me tightly and kissed my forehead. I was so lucky to have him by my side.
"I love you Taylor. So much." I told him after I pulled away.
"I love you too honey. You're like my daughter, of course I will be proud of you." he said giving me another hug.
I almost forgot that River and the boys were with us. I was so lost in the moment I had lost track of time and place.
"He's right sis. I'm very proud of you too and I love you." River said while reaching out to hug me tightly.
"I love you too big bro." I told him as I hugged him back just as tight.
Then, out of the blue the unexpected happened. The boys, Damon, Jason and Ryer came hugging me, wrapping me in their embrace thanking me once again for the opportunity.
I felt safe in their embrace. If anything safer than ever. It felt home. For some reason though, I could only focus on Ryer hugging me. Perhaps, it was his strong perfume or just the fact that, I felt very comfortable and myself around him.
When everything was finally decided, we all headed to the main hall and took our own ways. Next, in my list for the day, was practicing my shooting skills, so I headed straight to the shooting range.
When I first had started training to be a future leader, Taylor had given me choices as to what I was most interested in and wanted to be more skilled.
I might have been young when I started, but my father was my role model and I wanted to be like him. Strong and powerful. So, I chose shooting and martial arts. They were my father's favorites, so I decided to follow in his footsteps.
With time's passing those two became my strongest passion. Which meant, that I was practicing them every single day from two hours each. I know what you're thinking. Isn't that too much? Don't you get tired?
Truth is, it is very tiring and it requires a lot of skill and commitment, but, when you grow up in an environment like mine you learn how to be patient, ambitious, strong and most importantly independent. So yeah, for anyone else it might seem too much, but not for me. Hence, why I am the best fighter and shooter in the whole family.
The shooting range was empty and I was grateful for that. I always focused better when I was alone.
I stood in front of my target, with my gun in hand, ready to shoot. With my headset and glasses on, I fired for the first time, the bullet hitting the target directly in the heart. My second time, the bullet hit the head of my paper target, and I was proud of myself.
I had practiced since I was ten, so this was a piece of cake for me. Taylor had trained me in the best way possible, so I could become an amazing shooter and perhaps a sniper in the nearest future. I wasn't really keen on the idea of a sniper, but, it wasn't completely off the table.
Around two hours later, I was finally finished and I felt good. I had released all my anger and frustrations from the previous weeks, and shooting really helped in getting rid of my stress, which was one of the main reasons why I chose it in the first place.
After practice, followed kick boxing and self-defense, so I headed to our gym room. Our house was pretty huge, and we pretty much had everything. The gym was huge, and also had a large swimming pool for our water lovers. Most parts of my days were spent there. Either practicing or just chilling at the pool reading a book. Yes, I was a bookworm don't judge me.
When I walked in, I noticed Ryer running in the treadmills. I didn't expect him to be here at this hour. Maybe he as well, was getting his morning exercise.
"Hey, Hamilton. Fancy seeing you here." I said with a smirk.
He noticed me and got off the treadmill, walking towards me.
"Hey, yourself Hill. I'm just getting my daily exercise, what about you?" he asked me returning the smirk.
"Well, if you must know, I'm joining my daily practice on kick boxing and self-defense. Would you wish to join me? Besides, I will be training you and the sooner we start, the better. We both get our exercise done at the same time." I suggested.
"Yeah sure, I would love that. You're right. The sooner, the better." he said and I nodded.
"You better prepare yourself Hamilton, because this bitch is about to kick your ass." I said with a big smirk plastered on my face. He better be prepared to lose.
"Not so fast Hill. I'm not afraid of you. Bring it on." he said challenging me. Boy, was he in for a big defeat. No one has ever won against me, so he won't either.
"Game on then. Take your position please." I said and we took our positions across from each other.
He threw the first punch at me, but I easily ducked and dodged it. He tried a second time, but I dodged it again. After a couple times of trying to hit me, I stepped forward tackling him to the floor, while sitting on him pinning his shoulders to the ground.
He had a surprised look on his face, which I rather enjoyed. I warned him that he can't take me. I couldn't help but smirk.
"Told you Hamilton. Be prepared. Is there some last words you want to share with the audience?" I teased.
"Yes, as a matter of fact there is something I would like to say. Payback time." he said with a smirk.
In a swift motion, he flipped us over, with me on the floor and him above me. He had my hands pinned to the floor, while he was looking me straight in the eyes with an arrogant smile.
Did he really think he won just because I'm laying under him? In his dreams. Although, to be honest I don't what I was feeling, or why I was feeling it, but in the position we were right now, adrenaline was rushing through me like crazy.
What was this feeling?
We were laying there for god knows how long, until I pushed him off me and got up abruptly.
"Well done Hamilton. I'm impressed. You sure know how to defend and disarm. But we still need to work on your punches. They are a little weak. No worries though. Nothing I can't help with." I said with a smile. I could feel my cheeks redden, but I couldn't let him see that.
"You too Rayna. You are really good, I'm impressed. And I know about my punches, I just didn't want to hurt you by hitting you hard." he said with a blush.
"Yeah, yeah I'm sure that's the reason. You just hate to admit that you lost to me. Anyways, thank you." I said smirking.
"You wish Hill. I can easily beat your ass if I want to. I demand a rematch." he said with a fake pout.
"Sure. Have it your way big baby. A rematch it is. Just so you know, I will kick your ass again." I said chuckling.
"We'll see about that. And I'm not a baby!" he pouted.
"Right, you're not. You are a cry baby." I said full on laughing now.
"I hate you Rayna Hill. So much." he said crossing his arms.
"Love you too Ryer. Come find me later, we can hangout." I told him still laughing. "You won't stay mad at me for long." I said, smacking the back of his head.
"We'll see if I come." he said still pouting.
"Your loss if you don't come." I sent him a wink and walked away.

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