Everlasting Bonds ( A Reverse Harem Story)

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Chapter 26

POV: Colt

As I started to wake up, I knew it would still be dark.

I had always been an early riser and would often rise before the sun did. There was something about being awake when no one else was that made me feel calm. It allowed me to collect my thoughts before the chaos of the day ensued.

This morning, waking up with Lark in the bed next to me, I wished for the first time that my body would allow me to sleep in. To stay in this place of peace with her.

We had separated a little throughout the night and were no longer pressed tightly against each other. Instead, she was laying on her side facing me. Her legs were slightly curled upward as if she was protecting herself even in her sleep. Even her left arm was bent inward and her hand was held in a fist. But her other arm... her other arm reached out to my side of the bed. That hand rested wide open

I rested my hand in her open one, taking a moment to look at her. It still felt like a dream that she was back in our lives. I had spent almost ten years thinking of this girl who was now a woman, and wondering where she was. Remembering what had happened to her brought a sense of cold rage into my body. As I watched her sleep, that rage dissipated and turned into something else.

God, she was beautiful.

Her hair was a mess that fell all around her head in a dark halo and her lips were slightly pursed. But she looked calm. No trace of the horrors that chased her from her bed last night appeared on her face. I wanted her to look like this always. Unafraid and at home.

I took my hand from hers and slowly retreated from the bed. Checking my phone I saw that it was almost 5:30 in the morning. Seeing as it was the weekend, I didn’t have to go into the office today and I could just grab a pair of sweats and head downstairs. Casting one last look at her before I softly closed the door, I felt a smile start to curl the edges of my mouth.

I missed her.

I f*cking missed everything about her.

As I was heading downstairs I noticed that Aidan’s door was open. When I walked over to his room I noticed that he wasn’t in his room. The man may have been a professional athlete but he knew how to sleep in on his days off. Turning away from his empty room I headed downstairs to find him.

Sure enough, he was sat at the kitchen table. A cup of black coffee in his hands.

“You’re up early”, I spoke softly as I made my way to the cupboard to grab a cup. His reply came as I filled up my own cup of coffee.

“Yeah I just had a lot on my mind I guess. I debated heading to the gym to get the energy out but I didn’t want to leave with Lark here. It’s stupid, but I feel like she will disappear again and I just... I don’t want to miss anything in case that happens”. His voice was quiet but strong. Aidan wasn’t usually much of a worrier but when life did trouble him, it always knocked him off balance a bit.

“She’s not going anywhere man,“. I sat down next to him at the island and sipped my coffee. “As long as she is safe, she isn’t going to leave again. It’s not like she left of her own choice last time either”.

I felt his body tense up as I reminded him of what Lark told us yesterday. “How do we help her Colt? I feel like we failed her before and I don’t know what to do now”, he whispered. The frustration and pain in his voice were clearly on her behalf.

I put my hand on his shoulder and gave it a gentle squeeze. “We do what she asks. Keep her identity safe. Listen to her asks and do what we can to help her find a way back to normal. She already helped herself more than we ever could. Every time I think about what happened to her... I see red. I see red and I want to hunt down every person that hurt her and kill them with my bare hands. She’s had enough violence in her life though. That’s not she needs us for now”.

He gave me a small smile as he took in what I said. “You’re right. She needs a family now. A real one, not the nightmare that she experienced back in Italy. The one we were starting to have in Connecticut”. His smile faltered as he asked his next question. “Do you think my boxing will make her uncomfortable?“.

I took another sip of my coffee as I thought that over. “No. Especially if she ever sees you fight, she’ll see how you move. The fluidity of your body is more similar to a dancer. If you are worried about it just ask her though. She’s been honest with us so we have to do the same”, I replied.

“I just want everything to be perfect for her. I know that’s impossible but now that we all have a second chance together I don’t want to f*ck it up”. Aidan’s eyes had an intensity in them that was rare for the early hour. It made me wonder if there was something else he was thinking; some other meaning for his words.

I think all of us wanted to help Lark find her footing again without adding more turbulence to her life. As I sat with Aidan and the two of us waited for the rest of the family to wake up, I could tell our thoughts were on the same thing.

The same woman.

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