No laughing matter
***POV - Meleana
I wake up with a jump, coughing frantically as a bunch of water is dumped on my face. I holler as the now wet shirt clings to my body and I glare to find whoever is responsible for this brutality. My eyes fall on my oh so lovely doggone cotton-picking brother, the evidence of the crime still in his hand. He grins from ear to ear before sprinting from the room.
“Jackson blooming Blackburn!” I scream while pulling back the blanket from my soaked body and bolt after him.
“I’m going to kill you and then make sure your sperm can’t reproduce!” I hear him howling from somewhere in the house and I run down the stairs and point-blank into a hard chest. Strong arms grab my waist and hoist me in the air before I can fall smack on my face.
“Careful, angel.” I see Jackson’s face watching me with a huge grin from the kitchen and I feel like slapping him to smithereens. I narrow my gaze while looking at him over Damion’s shoulder. Then Damion drops me on my feet and tilts his head while his eyes move over me.
“You’re wet.” His eyes land on my chest, the wet tee accentuating my breasts and nipples.
“Ghee, wonder how that happened? Ask the bloody idiot who woke me up!”
“Let me get you a dry shirt.” He walks with me up the stairs and hands me yet another one of his shirts. I wonder how many pieces of clothing the man has and who’s doing his laundry. He also hands me my bag with my athletic gear in and I remember I went to the club straight after practice. Maybe I can find something to wear in there. I hear him chuckle as he walks downstairs again.
“Dude, was that necessary?”
“Of course!” Jackson gives another deep laugh. I shake my head. I’ll get the little bastard back, that’s a promise. Maybe I must raise my disappointment to the little cocksucker’s coaches because he’s way too chirpy for a guy who just finished a 6-hour flight after a few games in New York. Obviously, they didn’t work him hard enough.
I grab my shorts and sports bra and pull on Damion’s shirt, and my sneakers. I’m thinking of going for a jog later on to clear my head.
“Mel, breakfast is ready!” Jackson shouts and I just give him a grunt while walking into the kitchen. Damion hands me a cup of coffee and although I still feel like strangling my sibling, I work up a smile.
“You better hope karma gets you before I do, little brother.” I pull out the word little, knowing Jackson hates it.
“Just so you know, this is meal number two of five,” Damion whispers in my ear walking past me and putting a plate full of delicious pancakes and bacon on the counter.
“Heard you screamed out Damion’s name over and over, pissed off a couple of people in the process. One of them that dum-ass ex of yours. Oh, and don’t forget Chloe. Shit, wish I could have seen that bitch’s face.” Jackson talks while stuffing a piece of bacon in his mouth. He covers his pancakes with syrup and then he looks up into my eyes with a big ass smile and I flip him the finger.
“Ug, I don’t even remember what happened.” I groan. Did I really call out to Damion? I quickly steal a look in his direction and the smile on his face tells me that it’s all true. Snap.
“He’s not her boyfriend anymore! Can’t the man take a fucking hint?” Damion mumbles softly between chomping on his food earning a stare from Jackson. Then they turn the conversation to Damion’s upcoming race. It’s not a MotoGP race, but a MotoCross race.
“Can we girls come too? I’ve never missed a race on the TV, but I’ve never been to one for real.” Jackson looks at Damion as if they’re sharing a secret with their eyes. I frown cause they look awkward suddenly shifting uncomfortably on the chairs. And then I realize just what slipped through my mouth and how it might be conceived. Damn.
“Uh, you never missed a race?” Jackson asks with pulled-up eyebrows.
“Eh … well … usually … it’s like … um …” I can’t find anything to say so decides to rather change the subject, hoping for the best. “Is there a reason why I shouldn’t go?”
“Uhm, the press!” Jackson frowns.
“Oh, I forgot,” Damion looks at Jackson as if he’s waiting for him to give permission. Jackson just shrugs his shoulders and pulls his mouth into a lopsided grin.
“Ug, okay droopy, you and Kiara can go with us,” Jackson says. Suddenly I remember Kiara was also drugged.
“Enrique and Logan took her home this morning. They came here after they fetched me from the airport. I stayed cause I wanted to see you.” I put my plate in the washer and grab my brother around his neck.
“I love you two dipship.”
“Ah, you’re my favorite sister.” Jackson coos.
“I’m your only sister.” I hit the back of his head.
“Love you too but the only thing I would love more than hugging you right now is a bed. Ok, if I crash in the one guest room?” He asks looking at Damion.
“Sure” Damion complies and Jackson walks up the stairs with a yawn.
“Oh, Jackson, hope you don’t drown in your sleep,” I shout after him before walking outside. For a while, I just sit and watch the waves break on the sand. Just for a moment, I feel at peace, while I watch the sun dancing on the water, creating mirror-like images jumping from the ocean.
I look at my phone and swipe the screen to open WhatsApp and I read my messages.
Kiara: I’m fine. Logan is sleeping in your bed. Stay safe bitch. Enjoy Damion (red-chili-pepper emoji)
I reply, just to let her know I’m ok.
Mel: I’m good, C U soon. #PizzaNight #JustUs2
She almost immediately replies with a thumbs-up. Great. I notice Uncle John called, and I know he’s pretty worried about me. Especially, as he knows exactly what the monster’s capable of. I make a mental note to call him back. Then I take a deep breath and open Ren’s message.
Ren: Just want to know if you’re ok?
Although we’re not together anymore, I feel obligated to call him to tell him I’m ok. I press the green button and hear the phone ring. After just three rings he answers his voice husky and full of sleep.
“Hi,” His voice sounds as if he’s in a daze and then he speaks to someone else with him “Wait, not now, babe.” Then he’s back on the phone again
“Mel? Shit.” It’s as if he only now registers who he’s talking to. “Are you ok?”
“I’m fine Ren. Thanks for asking.”
“Mel, I’m sorry, I wish I could have done something.”
“It’s ok Ren.” He gasps and I hear some giggling and a woman’s voice. Somebody is with him. “Is this a bad time?” I ask quickly.
“No, sorry … uh … eh … TV is on.” Yeh right. I’m not stupid, but frankly, I don’t care.
“Anyway, just wanted to let you know I’m ok.”
“Mel, are you in love with that …” I’m hungry – the TV voice in the background says.
“Ren, please just leave it alone.” I interrupt him cause I don’t want to get into it with him. “Bye, Ren.” I end the call before he can say anything more. I get up, feelings of relief flooding through me, making me feel light and so much better.
Damion hands me some coffee and sits down next to me on the sand. A few seagulls are fighting for scraps of food.
“I talked to Ren. I think he finally moved on.” I blurt it out, not sure exactly why, but I want him to know for some reason. I keep my eyes on the ocean, too scared to look at him.
“Why did you break up with him?”
“Does it matter?”
“It matters to me. Why did you break up with him?” I don’t think I’ll ever understand this man. He always seems to dig his nose into my life, and for what? To get me agitated?
“Because … apparently to quote a certain asshole, we had no passion like gay rats.“ I know he’s looking at me but I’m not turning, my eyes are fixed forward.
“Clever asshole, you should listen to him more.” I turn towards him cause I’m getting agitated.
“Why do you want to know anyway?” He moves his head and now his lips are just millimeters away from mine. I stare at them like a turkey that survived thanksgiving. His mouth curls at the corner, suggesting his thoughts are not at all pure and innocent.
His lips come crashing down on mine and a groan escapes my body while my betraying hands move up his muscular torso and land in his thick hair. Traitors! I know by now that nothing in this world can dampen the strong pull he has on me. He moves me onto his lap so I’m cradling him without breaking our kiss. He tastes like minty chocolate, recklessness, and everything bad-boy Damion, and even though I know this is wrong in so many ways, I can’t get enough of him.
His hand strips under my shirt, his sensual fingers touching my bare skin, my body vibrates, my heart pumping humming-bird fast. I’m keen with need, his tongue licking the burning spot where he just bit my bottom lip, his other hand cupping my face. A voice in my head is trying to warn me. This is like sitting on a time-bomb! It’s going to blow up in my face big time! I manage to get the courage to push him away and take a deep breath.
“Damion, stop,” I whisper and try to get away from him, but he keeps his hand on my back, his forehead leaning against mine. I wiggle to get free, but he cups my chin with his hand and holds me in place with a big smirk, cocking his head to the side. His eyes swim with emotions, intrigued, excited, and amused as if everything’s a big joke to him. I bite my lip and his thumb grazes over my lips gracefully, seductively.
“I told you not to do that several times, it drives me hornably crazy.” His eyes are the color of leaves after the rain - dark green. I let out a deep breath and sit silently on his lap, too scared to move. It’s as if he wants me to acknowledge something, to admit to feelings I don’t want to dwell into, to accept and absorb, to verbalize what’s running through my heart. But I can’t.
“Please let me go.” I plead, not trusting my lusting body to not do something embarrassing. He removes his grip and I quickly move away to sit on the sand again, making sure I leave a gap between us.
“So shoot, what’s the problem?” He asks, waiting for my answer. Ok, so he wants to know what the problem is … I’ll tell him the freaking truth!
“Firstly, I don’t want a guy who’s in love with another woman, Chloe – ring any bells. I don’t try to deny it, I heard you telling your mom at Uncle John’s party that you’ll die for her. So I know very well this is going to end in disaster. Oh, and before you think it, I was not eavesdropping, I just heard you talking.” A frown forms between those sexy brows, but he doesn’t say anything and I’m not going to give him a chance anyway.
“So even though I like spending time with you and kissing you, I just can’t play around with you like this. I can’t risk you breaking my heart.” His lips are pulled in a tight line and his eyes seem to be mocking me, but I hold my own and continue. I need to do this, need to tell him exactly where I stand. He needs to know that I’m not just a bimbo that he can dip his stick into and then chip off on his bedpost.
“You know I want something real, something epic … someone who loves the whole of me to the bones and not just my vagina for the night. You know, a happily-forever-after love, but you are not a forever kind of boy. And lastly, there are my brothers and they will for sure not be happy if I hook up with their best friend just for a fling.” I know I’m babbling awkwardly, but I’m borderline neurotic, almost hysterical, feeling skittish and scared. Let’s just say I’m emotional at this moment sharing my feelings with him like this and his freaking beautiful eyes watching me is not making things any easier.
“I can’t put my heart out there just so you can have a new girl on your bike tomorrow. So you kissing me ain’t going to happen again. This lab-rat is not available for any more experiments.” I give him my most serious look.
There are a few moments of silence and then he burst out in laughter, and the first thing that pings into my mind is that I love his laugh. How stupidly pathetic is that? And then I get a little of my emotional rollercoaster ride under wraps and I push anger to the front.
“What the fudge is wrong with you?” I’m telling him in all seriousness that I’m not going to let him break my heart and what does he do? He freaking laughs! And not just a giggle, no, a full uproarious unrestraint snickering. I jump up and start running in a direction, any direction.
“Mel, stop! Don’t you dare run away!” I stop and he seems to relax, at least he stopped laughing.
“You’re not my boss!” I shout furiously, looking painfully back at him. “Actually, you’re not anything to me! I just hate your guts.” I don’t look back again and just stick my arm out, throwing him a big deserved middle finger, before sprinting away again.
He’s still dressed in only his boxers and he’s also barefoot, so I know he can’t follow me right away.
“Mel, I warn you, for fuck sakes, stop running!” But I don’t. Hah, look who’s laughing now asshole! I hear a few more swear words and then I’m too far away to hear anything. I notice that I’m running into some kind of wood, but there is a definite pathway, and I decide to keep on it as not to get lost.
I love to jog, it’s one of my most favorite things to do. I look around and take in the stupendous beauty of my surroundings. I’m in awe and at least for this moment, it drives Damion from my mind. I wipe my tears and try to take everything in. The sunlight fights to get past the green tree canopy and only bits and pieces of the sun fall on the ground where green pastures flow as if it’s going on forever. Colorful flowers break the sea of green and I even see some small creatures trying to hide between the lush forestry.
I wonder where the pathway leads, and I keep going, increasing my pace, just in case I’m being followed. Suddenly the forest clears into a field and the bright light of the sun blinds me for an instance. I blink a few times, strutting to a walk.
The scene unfolding in front of me is mesmerizing. Horses graze carefree in a paddock not far from me, drawing my eyes further to where a mansion hides in the shadow of a small mountain that runs deep into the ocean. It must be one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen, everything seems to just flow into one another as if it’s meant to be like that. Wow!
“Hi, what are you doing here ?” A voice suddenly jolts me from my lovestruck dream, making me jump. I look around for the owner but find no one. Ok, Mel, you’re definitely losing it, you’re officially going crazy. I glare behind me into the forest thinking that maybe Damion is playing with me again.
“Hey, I’m talking to you, beautiful!” Now I’m slightly getting panicked. And then a shadow jumps from the trees and lands next to me.
“Holy ship!” I scream, ready to run again, but something grips my arm, leaving me frozen in shock.
“You’re so funny. But seriously, what are you doing here?” I look down into Luke’s shining eyes. He takes my hand and starts dragging me to the house in the distance.
“I was jogging. Is that your house?” My heart tumbles back to an almost normal rhythm. He laughs again.
“No silly, it’s my dad’s.” I smile back at him and I start to relax.
“So, are you going to invite me for some coffee?” His grin spreads from ear to ear.
“Of course. And maybe we can play ‘Call of Duty’?” His face grinning with excited anticipation. How can I say no to that?
“Definitely, but I must warn you, I’m pretty good.” His hand in mine pulls me a little faster and then he opens a big wooden door.