I pick at the food placed in front of me, grouchily. It’s not because I’m not hungry, trust me I’m practically starving but the fear and curiosity I feel make me lose my appetite.
The specimen of a man sitting across from me in this beige, almost bare room, causes this.
I look up to find his eyes on me, studying me. He looks like a sculpture with that expressionless look on his face and rigid body posture yet he looks alert, ready for anything. It’s pointless though it’s not like I would try anything with all the security he has in and outside of this room.
I glance at the only door in the room, he has two guards placed on the other side and at the corner of the room lies a camera. I look back down at the food in front of me; fry rice and shrimp in a box. They had ordered food from a Chinese restaurant but I’m not sure which, the box doesn’t have a logo.
Looking at my abductor once more, I push the box and fork away, leaning back on my chair.
“I want answers,” I state glaring at him.
He doesn’t respond instantly, he stares at me for a few seconds before saying one word. “Eat.”
“I’m not hungry,” I state, folding my arms over my chest.
“Eat,” he says a bit stronger his accent thicker. It sounded more Italian... so that’s where he was all these years.
“I’m not hungry,” I state harshly through gritted teeth.
How dare he boss me around! Not only has he not answer my questions but the only word other than ‘eat’ that he has said to me in the last hour is ‘come’ when he led me from the interrogation room.
The only reason I even left that room is that I don’t know where I am and he’s the only one I know in this place... Plus, I’m a tad claustrophobic and that room was getting to me.
Dylan leans forward, intertwining his fingers as he looks intently at me. “I said eat, Ana.”
“An entire sentence,” I spit out sarcastically with a surprised face, choosing to ignore the name he called me. “To what do I owe the honour?”
His eye twitches as I flash him my ‘piss off’ smile and he leans back with a clenched jaw.
“I’m not hungry!” I yell slamming my hand on the small table between us.
He eyes me with a grim expression, his shoulders tense and the twitch of his eye gives away his anger.
“You’ve been asleep for 12 hours! Don’t tell me you’re not hungry. Now stop acting like a child and eat something!” he bellows while standing, his height towering over me.
“I’ve been asleep for 12 hours?” I ask with parted lips. “Oh my god!”
My mind starts running a mile a minute. My family must be going out of their minds looking for me, worrying about me and Diana! My poor baby... I can’t imagine what she might be thinking or feeling! And it’s all because of him!
“Why am I here Dylan?! Is this some plan to scare me into being with you?! Or have you finally lost it and decided kidnapping is the way to go?!” I yell at him, throwing my hands about. “My family must be worried sick over me! And Diana, she must think I’m dead! My da-”
I stop, my hands on my head as I notice what I almost let slip. I can’t tell him! I don’t even know if I can trust him-no I know I can’t trust him.
“Why am I here?” I ask staring at him with a look of betrayal.
Still, he shows no emotion, he just stares at me with blank eyes. Getting irritated, I stomp away from him towards the door.
“You won’t get past that door,” he says from behind me and I tense hand on the doorknob.
“If you’re not going to answer me, I rather rot away in that grey room than spend another minute in here with you,” I say with a flat tone.
He doesn’t say anything and I nod accepting his silent reply. I twist the knob only to freeze as his hand covers mine and his body presses against my back.
I open my mouth to tell him to get his hands and body off me but he speaks before I get a word out.
“Sit and eat... For each bite you take I’ll answer a question,” he says gruffly, his breath tickling my ear. “Do you agree?”
His body on mine brings back memories of the past when we were young and lost in each other but I shake it off. This is now, he’s no longer the Dylan I knew, he’s a stranger to me.
I nod, firmly pulling my hands away but he doesn’t release me.
“Do you agree?” he asks again pronouncing the words slowly, caressing each letter.
I know what he wants... He’s always hated when I nod at him. He wants me to use my mouth, he wants a verbal answer. Every bone in my body is telling me to defy him but I’m a prisoner here until I get answers to the questions burning inside of me.
“Yes, I agree,” I state through gritted teeth.
His mouth is so close to my ear that I feel as his lips lift into a smirk. He releases my hand, pulling away from me before walking back to the small table in the windowless room and I follow behind him.
I sit before pulling the box towards me and placing a forkful in my mouth before swallowing.
“Where am I?” I ask, looking at him expectantly.
“Santa Ana,” he states, arms folded across his chest.
So I’m still in California that’s good.
I take another fork full. “Where are we staying now?”
Damn, this tastes heavenly. I mentally moan.
“My house,” he replies, eyes trained on me.
I take another bite. “Do you live in Santa Ana?”
“No,” I wait for him to elaborate but he doesn’t.
“Okay, this isn’t going to work if you only give me at the most two words replies!” I state irritated, abandoning my meal.
“I said I would answer your question. Not how I would answer,” he states blankly.
“You know what? Fuck this,” I fume pushing out my chair, ready to take my chances outside that door.
“This is one of my many houses in various states and countries,” he rushes out before clearing his throat. “Now sit and eat.”
“Now we’re getting somewhere,” I say before sitting and continuing to eat.
I eat a lot more this time round before pushing away the box. It’s time I get answers.
“It’s Cristiano here, Ana,” he interrupts.
“Cristiano,” I say with a roll of my hazel eyes.
He nods, not the bit amused with my obvious display of disrespect. I sigh leaning forward, my eyes locked with him as I ask.
“Why am I here?”
He doesn’t answer immediately, leaving me in a moment of suspense, the curiosity within me gnawing at my brain. I tap my fingers on the table impatiently as his eyes held mine. Those blue-green eyes blank of all emotions.
“To protect you.”
My tapping ceases as I ponder his reply. To protect me from what?
“Not what but who,” he says and I notice I had voiced my thoughts.
“Why would I need protection Dy –Cristiano?” I ask, leaning forward in my seat.
He opens his mouth to speak but I cut him off. “…and don’t give me a fucking cryptic answer.”
His mouth tilts in a grin as he looks me over and I freeze taken aback. He looks boyish and lifelike with that simple motion so unlike this expressionless, stoic look he has developed.
“Swear words shouldn’t come from such a pretty mouth or has my little fox forgotten that?” he asks with a tilt of his head.
Memories of us at that tattoo parlour drunk out our minds flood my brain and my body hums to the carelessness and happiness I felt, sitting there getting matching fox tattoos. It was a dumb dare and I wasn’t one to back down... but in the end, I almost chickened out. Dylan being the good, drunk friend he was, decided to get one with me to ease my nerves.
The next morning we’d woke up with matching tattoos on our lower back.
We were such stupid teenagers.
I almost smile-almost- at the memory but I notice quickly what he’s trying to do. He always redirected conversations when he doesn’t want to answer, just like he did to me that night... the night he left.
Knowing that is enough for me to push away the memories he’s trying to evoke and I glare at him.
“I won’t fall for that again,” I state coolly, sitting back in my chair. “Now answer the fucking question or I go.”
His grin fades as he notices his plan didn’t work, sitting forward he sighs. “Very well, Ana.”
“You need protection because you’re being target by someone close to you. Someone who wants to strike a deal with me and didn’t take it too nicely when I turned them down,” he states whilst holding eye contact with me. “They know about our past and think by targeting you they can persuade me.”
“What do you mean someone close to me?” I ask sitting straighter in my seat. “Who is it?”
His eyes hold mine never wavering as he states the person’s name.
I look at him in disbelief. This can’t be true, he must be trying to turn me against him, to win me back. This must all be a ploy in his demented plan of wiggling his way back into my pants.
He expects me to be fucking believe this?
“You’re so full of shit!” I yell pushing back my chair as I stand. “You had me going for a while. I almost believed you but now I see it’s just that ugly jealousy within you rearing its head.”
“Indiana, I am not lying,” he states coolly, looking at me with a look of indifference like he expected this reaction.
“You honestly want me to believe that my fiancé is willing to risk my life to make a deal with you? Roberto fucking adores me!” by now I’ve stormed over to him, grabbed his chair and turned him to face me. “Who the fuck do you think you are?!”
Abruptly he stands and I stumble back taken off guard. His gaze is unnerving as he stares at me, not a hint of emotion under his mask.
“Who the fuck am I?” he asks with an arched brow.
“I am the one who saved you from being kidnapped,” he states taking a calculated step forward and I step back on instinct.
“I am the one that is keeping you from being hunted and used for that son of a bitch’s gain.” Another step, another retreat.
“I am the one that hasn’t stopped caring for you after all these years,” he steps and my back hits the wall.
“I am the one that loves you more than anything,” he moves so his body is pressed on mine but I put my hand on his chest trying to create space. “The one that loved you enough to leave you.”
His hand caresses my cheek and I go to lash out but I suck in a breath. The look in his memorising eyes stops me. His eyes are lit with so much emotion that it’s almost hard to look at them. I see raw pain, regret and vulnerability in those eyes. All that emotion he’s been hiding has finally broken through and I find myself getting lost in the typhoon.
“You left me,” I breathe out, my voice barely above a whisper.
I feel so entranced, so vulnerable as I look at him. It’s like he’s woven his web over me, awakening that submissive side of me that once worshipped him.
“To protect you,” he states lowly, his eyes flickering to my trembling lips.
“You hurt me,” I shoot back, the pain I feel lacing my words.
“That was never my intention, Ana,” he murmurs, never taking his eyes off me.
Dylan’s eyes are like my kryptonite, they make me weak for him. All it takes is one look to captivate me and once he has me, I can never be free.
“Dylan...” I whisper and he takes a deep breath, punishing me with those angelic eyes.
His hands grip my hips, that warmth I felt with him resonating across my skin. I fail to hold in a whimper at his touch and he pins me with a heated gaze. His head tilts to the side as his eyes glide over my face, taking in as much as he can.
“So fucking gorgeous,” he groans and I feel my heart pulse in my chest.
He leans forward, his lips hovering over mine and I momentarily forgot to breathe.
“I will do anything to keep you safe,” Dylan whispers, his breath tickling my lips and I grip his arms as an aching awakens in me.
This wanton feeling pulses inside me and I mentally scold myself.
“Even if it means killing that bastard,” he murmurs again lowly but I hear it and that knocks me out of this trance.
“Killing him?” I ask, pushing him away.
He stumbles back, genuinely confused as I stare at him with wide eyes. Him as in Roberto? My fiancé? Oh my god! You’re engaged Indie, what are you doing trying to shack it up with Dylan?!
“What do you mean kill him?” I ask moving away from the wall and him. I can’t concentrate around him.
He gazes at me with hurt as I move away from him and that mask if indifference slides on, dismissing all emotions.
“Exactly what it means, Ana,” he says like he’s talking to a dense child.
“Don’t call me that!” I state, absolutely annoyed by the pet name and his sudden withdrawal. “You don’t deserve to!”
“Are we back to this again?” he asks before running a hand down his face. “I don’t have time for this, Ana.”
“You are not allowed to call me that!” I continue feeling my temper rise at his taunting. “You-you are not the Dylan I knew! My Dylan would never think of killing anyone! I can’t believe I almost made you do things to me! What the hell was I thinking? I’m marrying Roberto-”
“Oh grow the fuck up Indiana!” he bellows effectively shutting me up. His shoulders are tense and his fists are clenched. “You’re right the Dylan you knew doesn’t exist anymore! You have no clue what I went through but if you think for one minute that your asshole fiancé gives a flying fuck about you... You’re a damn fool!”
He stops speaking staring sharply at me and I stay there immobilize, unable to reply.
“There will be someone to take you to get cleaned up,” he states coldly after a few minutes of silence. “Don’t cause any trouble.”
With that he walks over to the only door in the room, swinging it open before barking orders and stomping away from me.
Someone clears their throat and I look up at a blonde with blue eyes in casual attire. “Follow me.”
He turns before walking off and I silently trod behind him, too shocked to speak.