The Red Dahlia

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Chapter 22-Swim lake a fish-


I have to admit that being in Ryer's arms, made me feel nice and at ease. He just had this aura surrounding him that relaxed me every time I was around him.

We were now currently laying on the sunbed reading the book, and I swear that I could feel Ryer's eyes on me a few times. Though, I didn't turn my head to confirm it, I could catch his glances with the corner of my eye.

At some point as we were reading, I felt his free hand brushing against my cheek, sending a wave of warmth through my spine. Needless to say, I was filled with goosebumps all over. My cheeks were a nice strawberry red, and I'm pretty sure he could tell.

Suddenly, he leaned in closer to my ear and whispered, "You really are beautiful you know that?". I turned my head slowly and was met with his beautiful eyes looking at me lovingly and with his capturing smile.

Such a sight for sore eyes.

"Thank you Hamilton. Just so you know, I find you beautiful too." I told him, returning the smile.

He chuckled before answering, "Beautiful? You're doing me wrong Hill. I'm hot." he said faking hurt.

Lord help me with this boy.

"Yeah, yeah whatever." I rolled my eyes at him playfully. He was not having it though.

"Don't you roll your eyes at me love." he said playfully, placing the book down.

I only took it as a sign to mess with him further and rolled my eyes once more.

"Oh now you're going to get it." he said as he starting tickling my sides furiously. Fuck my life. There was no getting out of this, that much I knew already.

I was having a huge laughing fit and I couldn't catch my breath. Damn Ryer.

"P-please Ryer, stop it. I can't take this for much longer. Sadly, you know how ticklish I can get." I managed to say, in between breaths.

"Well, I did tell you to stop rolling your eyes didn't I? And you just did it anyway. So now, you're getting payback." he claimed with a wide smile.

"Okay fine. If I apologize to you and promise not to do it again will you let me go? Pretty please? I can promise you, I'm not gonna last long if you continue." I pleaded hoping it would work.

"I suppose I will. But I'll need to hear you apologize first and then I'll free you." he said maintaining tense eye contact.

"Fine. I'm sorry for rolling my eyes at you Ryer. I promise it won't happen again." I said with a little sarcasm but thankfully he didn't notice.

"That's my girl. It wasn't so hard now was it?" he replied smirking, while getting off me.

"No it wasn't, but don't get too used to it. I'll get back at you for this." I winked at him, before getting up to leave.

"Wait, where are you going? You can't just throw a threat and then leave. I'm afraid for my life." he said faking fear.

"Aww, don't worry Hamilton I have no intention of hurting you. I like you too much to do that. And as for leaving, I was planning to take a swim at the lake. You and the boys are more than welcome to join." I smiled at him brightly.

"I was just playing around Hill. I know you wouldn't hurt me. You wouldn't be able to live without me if you did so. As for the invitation, I'm in. I'll just shoot a text to Jason to let him know." he replied, returning the smile.

I couldn't help but chuckle at him.

"While you give yourself too much credit, I have to admit that yes, I wouldn't be able to live without you. My life would be kind of dull." I spoke honestly.

"So, I'll see you later then?" I asked.

"You know it." he winked at me as I left.

Returning back to my room, I took off my clothes and changed into a dark green one-piece swimsuit, with cuts on the sides and an open back. It really complimented my skin tone, which was a beautiful tan brown due to the summer.

Letting my hair cascade down my shoulders, I took my towel and sunglasses and headed out the door.

I had told the girls to meet me at the lake at 10:30, so we could take our time swimming without having to worry about getting too exposed to the sun.

As I arrived at the lake, I saw the girls sitting under the tree that we always used to sit, because it provided us with shadow and coolness in warm days, such as today.

"Hey girl! We were waiting for you." Jen greeted me when I got close enough.

"Yeah. We started thinking that you wouldn't show." Alexa added.

"No way I would miss any opportunity to spend quality time with you loves. Also, for your information, I invited the boys so they should be here any minute now." I spoke smiling.

"That's a great idea Ray. That way, we can also spend some more time with them and get to know them better." Jen replied, a wide smile forming on her lips.

"That also means that you will get the chance to get more intimate with Ryer. If you know what I mean." Quinn winked at me, throwing her arm around my shoulder.

Why did I see this coming?

"Quinn, you cannot be serious right now. Have you forgotten what I've said about this? How am I supposed to get intimate with him, when I don't even know if the feeling is mutual? You know my mindset about this." I told her firmly.

Quinn was about to reply, but Alexa cut her off.

"And have you forgotten what we have told you Ray? That Ryer likes just as much as you like him. Maybe even more. You have nothing to worry about babe. And besides, we're here for whatever you need." she said soothing me.

"I know girls and I really appreciate your support more than anything else, it's just that, a part of me still feels insecure." I claimed honestly.

"I know you do baby, but you shouldn't. You're Rayna fucking Hill. A smart, sexy, determined, confident person and above all, a kind hearted spirit. You shouldn't worry about anything." Jen said, reaching closer to hug me.

Hearing their words made me feel secure and at ease. They always knew how to boost my mood and I loved them for it.

"Thank you girls. I really love you, you know that right?" I inquired, hugging them tightly.

They hugged me back just as tightly and said "Of course we do Ray. And we love you too, you're our everything. Soon enough Ryer will realize it too." they all said in unison.

Suddenly, a cough sounded, causing us to break away from each other.

"I'm sorry girls, are we interrupting anything?" Damon asked blushing a little. That's when I noticed better all the guys in their swim trunks.

One thing worth mentioning, that Hamilton had me at a completely loss for words.

He was wearing dark red swim trunks, which were hanging loosely around his waist and dangerously low too. He was shirtless, which didn't help my case because, his muscles were exposed before me and I was having a very hard time looking anywhere else but him.

Let's hope that no one noticed my continuous staring.

"Hill, are you alright? You zoned out there for a minute." I heard Ryer's voice and that's when I realized that he was standing in front of me, with a look of worry.

Fuck. Could I be any more obvious?

Bottom line, if he knew that I was practically gawking at him, I would never hear the end of it. His teasing about it, would become unbearable.

After composing myself for what seemed like ages, I finally manage to utter, "Yeah, sorry about that. I just got a little distracted." I was blushing like crazy.

Although making eye contact would be the death of me, looking down wasn't much better either. So, I forced myself to look up at him and tried my hardest to push my inappropriate thoughts away. They were absolutely no help right now.

"That's alright luv. I know I'm irresistible. I mean, you were staring for quite a long time." he said, leaning closer. Too close for comfort.

I was stunned. My mouth was open, but no words were making their way out. Of course he would catch me staring. What the hell was I thinking? This was Ryer Hamilton we're talking about.

I haven't felt such embarrassment never in my life before. This was a first.

I was lost in my own thoughts again, when I heard Ryer's voice pulling me back in reality. "Ray, I'm just messing with you. Yes, I did catch you staring, but I don't mind it to be honest. Besides, you know that riling you up is my favorite past time." he smiled down at me.

"I know you are, but I still want to clear my position. I didn't mean to stare for so long. You just caught me by surprise. Don't want you getting any wrong ideas now." I pointed out smirking.

His smile only grew wider.

"Keep telling yourself that Ray. Maybe you'll be able to convince yourself at the end." he winked at me, before lifting me up and throwing me over his shoulder.

I was beyond annoyed.

"Hamilton, what on earth do you think you're doing?!" I yelled at him trying to free myself, but to no avail. His hold was just too strong and no match for me.

"What does it look like? I'm taking us swimming. As for you being on my shoulder, let's just say that I rather enjoy watching you trying to break free." he said, jumping from the nearest rock, causing us both to land in the water with a loud splash.

When I reached the surface, I noticed the girls giving me suggestive looks from the shore, making me want to drown myself here and now.

Jason and Damon who had also joined the water, were laughing their butts off, earning them a glare from me.

Ryer hadn't shown himself for a while and I started to worry. What if he got stuck on something underwater?

My question was soon answered, when I felt two strong arms wrapping around me from behind, lifting me up in the air.

"Here she is! The high and mighty Rayna Hill. Our leader and most powerful Raven." he claimed proudly, giving me a spin.

"Yes! That's our girl!" I heard the girls yelling from across of me and Ryer. They had also gotten in the water and they were messing around with the boys.

"Ryer, I suggest you put me down right now, or I swear I won't be responsible for what might happen." I told him firmly, but trying to contain a laugh that was about to erupt.

"As you wish milady." he said and dropped me in the water with force.

"Ryer! What the hell? I said put me down, not drop me!" I scolded him.

"Whoops, I'm sorry I must have misunderstood." he replied coyly.

He was so doing this on purpose.

"I swear if I get a hold of you, you're as good as dead." I shot him a glare.

"Not if you can't catch me."

Dear readers, I'm sorry that this chapter was long, but it's part of the plot. Anyway, I would like to thank you for continuing your reading, I really appreciate it. Just letting you know, that the next update might take a while because I will be busy with many things, but until then stay safe and take care.

Love you

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