The Red Dahlia

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Chapter 13- I'll always be here-


After my first lesson with Rayna, I decided to hang out with the boys. Due to the fact that we were still the newcomers, we were quite busy with being introduced to everyone and, learning our way around here, so the boys and I didn't really had the chance to check in with each other.

Damon had just texted me, telling me to go meet them in Jason's room. He told me that Jason had sneaked a bottle of wine from the dining hall. This boy was so god damn irresponsible. I wonder what would Rayna do if she knew.

Well, that's not something I have to worry about. More like Jason better find a hole to hide himself.

As I was walking towards the house so I can meet with my mates, I heard faint crying coming from the direction of the bridge, so I decided to check it out. What if someone needed help?

I couldn't just ignore it and walk away. I'm not heartless.

So, I started walking towards the bridge to see what was wrong.

When I got closer, I saw Rayna sitting down, her legs hanging off the edge of it. She was wearing her headphones and her beautiful features were stained with tears. Her ice blue eyes were now red and puffy and her lips were a tiny bit swollen.

The sight in front of me was just heartbreaking. I couldn't stand seeing her like this. It was like every time she was upset, a piece of my heart died down.

Whatever might have happened to her? She was fine a few hours ago.

I slowly approached her, being aware that she hadn't noticed me because of her headphones. She seemed so hurt and vulnerable right now, I just wanted to hold her forever.

When I got close enough, I softly removed her left headphone from her ear, hoping she would notice me now.

"Rayna, are you alright? What's going on?" I asked her softly, taking a seat next to her.

She turned to face me immediately, giving a full view of her beautiful face, now stained with tears.

"R-Ryer what are you doing here? You startled me a little." she said and only now I realized that her voice was completely sore. She must have been crying for quite some time.

She quickly wiped her tears away, trying to put on a brave front.

"I was on my way to Jason's room, when I heard crying. What happened Rayna? Why were you crying?" I asked her full worried now. This was nothing like the first time we met here.

"It's nothing, I'm fine. I just got a little emotional. Anyways, you should go to Jason's room, he must be wondering where you are. Just leave, I'll be fine on my own." she said her voice shaking.

I was taken aback. Why was she pushing me away? I couldn't just go get drunk, knowing that she will be here alone crying.

No. I'm not letting her go through this alone. She can push me away all she wants, but I will never leave her alone.

"Don't lie to me Rayna. It's obvious that you are not fine. Jason can wait. I'm not going anywhere, I will stay here with you until you talk. And don't even think about running away or pushing me away, because it will be futile." I told her firmly, giving her a reassuring squeeze on her shoulder.

She looked to have relaxed under my touch, and I was pleased. She then looked at me, giving me a nod.

"Thank you Ryer. For being here every time I need you. I have a little tendency to run away when I'm hurt because I don't like people seeing me weak, but with you, I don't care. I feel safe when you're here." she said smiling.

"Safe enough to tell me what happened?" I asked her.

"I think so. You just, make everything easier for me. I don't have to be worried that you will judge, and that's why I feel like I can tell you every secret that I might hide from others." she admitted.

The fact that she felt safe around me, made me very happy. To be honest, that's what I wanted. For her to feel safe with me. To become the safe place for her to land.

"The reason I came here, is to visit my parents. I haven't told you this before, maybe because I never got the chance, but when they passed away, we made arrangements so we could keep their ashes. I know it might sound odd to you, but we wanted to hold them a ceremony of our own. When my dad passed away, me and River came here and built a little boat, where we placed my mother and father's ashes, along with some candles so they can burn. Of course we added their favorite flowers, red dahlias. Lastly, we placed the boat on the lake, lit up the candles and let mother and father go and find their peace. It was the best night of my life. Me and River stayed there all night, watching them disappear into the unknown. But we knew that no matter where the water would take them, they would look after us like the always would." she claimed with a small smile on her face, thinking of that pleasant memory.

I was ready to get emotional myself, but I refrained from doing so, because I didn't want to make her more vulnerable than she already was.

"Now as for the reason of my crying, I came here to talk to my parents. Like I have been doing quite regularly. I usually come here once a week to talk to them. It gives me the closure I need. It's not easy for me you know? Talking to them without collapsing completely. It's fine though. I have gotten used to it, so I can't really say it bothers me anymore." she finished. I noticed a small tear rolling down her face.

"Rayna, I have no idea what to say. I didn't know. What you did with River, it is something very meaningful and I'm more than sure that your parents appreciate it. On top of that, it's not weird or unusual at all. You wanted to give them something special and that's what you did. Period. Don't be shy about it. I also think that you talking to your parents, is something beautiful. And you know what else I know? That your parents, wherever they are, they are looking down at their beautiful daughter, being proud of her. You are a good person Rayna." I said with a smile.

She looked stunned at my words. She shouldn't be though. When it comes to her, I mean every word.

Her eyes met mine for a brief moment, like she wanted something to say, but she didn't dare to.

"What is it Rayna? What's on your mind? Tell me." I asked her curiously.

"I, uh, can I have a hug? I kind of need one right now." she asked me nervously and a small blush was forming on her cheeks.

Her cuteness made me chuckle at her. She was so damn sweet. Nothing like the gang leader she really is.

Did she really ask if she could hug me? If anything, I was ready to do it myself.

"Come here you idiot. You know you don't have to ask me right?" I told her with a chuckle.

She moved closer to me and I wrapped my arms around her frame, surrounding her with safety, care and maybe even love.

We stayed like that for quite some time. Mostly because, she smelled like vanilla and strawberries and I just couldn't let her go.

How can one person be so perfect?

After a while, she pulled away with a smile forming on her beautiful lips.

"Thank you Ryer. I really don't know what I would do without you. You have helped me so much, I owe you everything." she said holding my hand now, which took my a little by surprise, but I didn't mind. How could I?

"Rayna, you know I would do anything for you. I will always be by your side, even if you don't want me to. I need you to trust me that I will never leave you. Ever. Do you trust me?" I asked her.

"I do Ryer. More than anyone else in this world. I need you to promise me something too. That whatever happens, you will never hurt or betray someone in this family. This gang, it means everything to me, and as much as I like you, I won't hesitate to show you my tough side. Do we have a deal?" she asked me seriously.

I loved her when she was being bossy. All jokes aside, I would never do anything to harm her or the people that mean the world to her. She can trust me.

"You can trust me Hill. I promise you." I told her with a smile.

She looked relieved and it made me smile.

"I believe you owe me some quality time now Hill. Don't you dare tell me you forgot about it." I looked at her, my eyes narrowed at her.

"Hey, how dare you? Of course I didn't forget. Who do you take me for? Actually, I thought you would stick to your word and not come. Considering you were mad at me." she said with a smirk.

And the Rayna I know was back.

"Oh no, you won't get rid of me that easily Hill. You made a promise and you need to keep it." I told her, returning the smirk.

"I know Hamilton. I do. Now get your ass moving, or I will be spending my night alone, doing all kinds of fun stuff that you could ever imagine." she told me, clearly provoking me.

This girl was something else.

"Wait Hill! I'm coming with you." I called after her, as she started to run away.

"You're such a slow poke Hamilton. Can't even keep up with me? Pathetic." she remarked as she picked up her pace.

Oh now, she was going to have it.

I started running with full force, in order to catch up with her, and when I did, I picked her up and threw her over my shoulder, carrying her to her room.

"Hamilton, what the hell are you doing?! Put me down now!" she yelled at me, trying to sound serious, but in between laughs.

"No. You disrespected my physical abilities, and now you're paying for it. River has told me everything you despise, that including being thrown over someone's shoulder." I said laughing too now.

"He did what?! I swear I will kill that asshole. As soon as I get my hands on him." she replied clearly pissed at her brother. I couldn't help but chuckle.

"Stop whining Hill. We're almost at your room." I told her and she stopped her whine.

A couple minutes later, we arrived at her room and Rayna was still over my shoulder. She had stopped fighting me and I was glad, because my back muscles were hurting, from her constant punching in order for me to put her down.

I put her down, and she was throwing daggers at me. She looked like she was ready to kill me right here, right now.

"You will pay for that Hamilton. I promise you." she said dead serious. Needless to say, that she got me there.

But she wouldn't dare. She can't survive without my constant teasing.

There was a brief moment of silence, before she added, "Hamilton relax. Please tell me that you didn't take that seriously. I was just messing with you. You are as gullible as River." she finished laughing.

Deep down, I knew she didn't mean it but, damn, she got me good. Note to self: never tease Rayna.

"Of course I didn't fell for it. I'm not River. You can't fool me that easily." I said, trying to not to show that I actually did fall for it.

She would never let it go if she knew.

"Fine. Let's say I believe you. Anyway, are you going to come inside so we can get our night started?" she asked with a smile.

"You don't need to tell me twice. We both had a long day." I told her, returning the smile.

This was going to be an interesting night.

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