I have never experienced love. I was an evil son of a bitch. My father could have been the devil himself; I wouldn't know; I have never met him. My mother was a prostitute whore who only cared about how she would score drugs next. Women have only been good for one thing. The ones who thought they were special were let down real fast. I didn't date. It would take someone fucking special to get me to love.
When I walked outside for a cigarette, I wasn't expecting to kill anyone. I was standing in the alleyway when I heard a struggle. Not like I cared, bitch probably deserved it. But it piqued my curiosity, so I walked further down, making sure not to be seen. I see a man pinning some woman against the wall. She was struggling so hard, and her cries were loud. When he was done, he decided to start beating her. That was the first time I saw her face. She was a pure angel, and he beat the hell out of her. It was doing something to me that I didn't like. I couldn't allow this.
Something in me surged, and I walked over and pulled him off her. I took out my gun and shot him in the head several times. I walk back to the crumbled woman on top of a garbage pile. She was still crying, and she could hardly move. Her hair was in her face, so I gently pushed it away. Even with a beaten look, she was beautiful. She had these captivating greenish-brown eyes. She spoke in the sweetest voice I have ever heard.
"Please.....please don't hurt me." she sounded scared. This hurt my chest. I feel like I could never harm this girl. Usually, I wouldn't care, but something about her gave me a different feeling I never had for someone. The more I look at her, the more I realize she is not a woman at all but a teenager. So why is this teenage girl in this alleyway? Where are her parents? I make a few calls, one to take care of the scum bag and the second to get a car here asap. When I am done, I grab her hands.
"Don't worry, Princess; I will help you," I say sweetly, caressing the middles of her palms with my thumbs. "What is your name?"
"My name is Frankie.” She is breathing quickly and still crying. Her whole body is trembling. I can't even imagine the pain she is in. She tried to move, but I told her to lay still—my poor angel.
What the fuck is wrong with me? Why am I helping this child? I should drop her off at the hospital. Her parents will be notified when she gets there. "Frankie, where are your parents at? Would you like me to call them?"
"My parents are dead." Well fuck. The car finally pulls up, and Wyatt gets out. A van pulls behind, and two of my men get out and start disposing of the body.
"What the fuck happened?" Wyatt asked.
"That prick raped her and tried to beat her to death," I say, pointing towards the van they put him in.
"So, what are you going to do with her?" he asks.
"I think we should take her back to the house and let Wilson check her out."
"You want to take this chick home? I don't think that is a good idea, man. She probably has someone who is looking for her." he said.
I turn to glare at him. "Did I fucking stutter? Who is in charge here?"
"You are. I will call to have him meet us there."
"Help me get her up in the car," I ordered him.
"OK, Princess, we will move you and get you in the car, OK?" I start to move my arms under her. Wyatt gets on the other side of her, and when he touches her, she cries out in pain. I look at him with wide eyes and punch him in the arm. "What the fuck did you do? Be careful. She is in enough pain. Just forget it. I will get her myself, get away from her."
Rubbing his arm, he looks at me like I lost my damn mind, and it seems like I have. I lift her in my arms, and she whimpers a bit. She places her face on my chest. I walk toward the car, and Wyatt opens the door for me. I crouch down and sit in the seat, and I leave her on my lap, not wanting to let her go. But she is just a teenage girl; why is she affecting me like this? Maybe I feel bad? But that's not right either. I never feel bad. I am fucking Gabriel Esposito; I don't have feelings.
I cradle her in my arms; she falls asleep on the drive home. I'm trying to figure out what to do with her. She said she had no parents, but that didn't mean she had no one. The right thing to do is find her home, but when did I do anything right? I am an evil man. Finally, we get to the house, and I carry her to my room. I lay her on the bed. I can see all the damage on her face. The left side of her face is swollen like a softball, with black and blue bruising surrounding the area.
The doctor was there waiting. I sit beside her and gently wake her up. When her eyes flutter open, she moves her eyes around a bit, trying to make out where she is. When she remembers what happened to her, her eyes widen in panic, shifting away. As soon as she tries to move, she lets out a cry. I hold her down gently, trying not to hurt her more. "It's OK, Princess, don't move too much. The doctor is here to see you. We are going to help you." She relaxes. I get off the bed and turn to Wilson, the doctor, "check her out, give her something for the pain. I will be back in a few to check on things."
I wave at Wyatt to follow me, and we both walk out of my room and head for the study.
"We need to find out everything we can about that girl. We will get some information from her when the doctor is done; I want a full report by tomorrow."
"OK. But Gabriel, why do you care so much about this girl?" He asks. It's a fair question.
"I don't know; there is something about her. I walked out in the alley away and saw her being attacked, and something snapped in me, and I needed to help her."
"So, do you have any plans on what to do with her?"
"We will figure that all out after the report in the morning. But, for now, she can sleep in my bed and rest."
He laughs a bit. "You do know she is a teenager, right?"
"Of course I do. I have eyes too. I didn't say I was going to sleep with her." Is he crazy?
I pour us both a drink and pass it to him. I finished mine in one gulp, but it wasn't enough. So I decided to grab the bottle and sit down.
"She told me her parents were dead, so I have no clue what to do here." I take a large swig of the bottle
"Well, you can't just keep her as a pet Gabriel." He says jokingly.
"That's not what I'm trying to do." I glare at him.
"Well, in all the years I have known you, you never saved anyone before, and you saved her." He points out.
"You think I don't know this?" Finally, he decided to drop the subject. He sees I'm struggling with this.
"OK, let's wait for the doctor to be done; I will get the report for you; we will figure everything out." He reassured me.
Fifteen minutes go by before I hear a knock at the door. I stand up to open it, and it's Wilson.
"How bad is it?" I ask worriedly.
"Well, she is severely injured. She has a broken eye socket, a fractured cheekbone, broken ribs, and a broken arm. I did a rape kit…" my eyes go red, and I grab ahold of his throat. He fucking touched her down there? No one is to touch her. Wilson looks terrified.
"You fucking touched her down there?" I growled at him. Wyatt comes up behind me and pulls me off.
"Come on, Gabriel, it was necessary to make sure she is OK, and she doesn't have STDs or whatever. Relax. Sit down." He says to me. I was staring at Wilson like I wanted to rip his head off, but maybe Wyatt was right, so I threw my arms up in the air and sat down.
"So continue, Wilson," Wyatt said.
The doctor looks over at me, scared out of his mind and back at Wyatt.
“I did the kit, and she has some tearing down there, but it should heal fine; I will send the results of the tests when they come back." Hearing this makes me feel a little better, but I wouldn't say I like that his hands were down there on her.
"I have some medications and ointments for her, including an arm splint and bandages on her ribs. They need to be changed daily. She is extremely malnourished and weak; it could take months to recover fully." Months? I wish I kept the asshole alive so I could torture him.
"She is awake if you would like to talk to her." I stand up immediately and rush toward the room. Wyatt dismissed the doctor and followed behind me.
When I get to my room, she's sitting up in bed with her head down. I notice her clothes are like rags, and they are filthy. Her hair was in knots and looked like it hadn't been washed in days, maybe weeks. With all the bruises on her body, she looks terrible.
"How are you feeling, Princess?" I ask her. She doesn't say anything. I move closer and sit on the bed next to her. I put my finger under her chin to raise her head to see her eyes. "Don't worry, Princess; no one will hurt you again," I tell her. “I will have Rita come and help you clean up and get into some clean clothes.” She just nods.
"Could you tell me your last name, so maybe we can find any family members or anything for you?"
"Rossi." She says softly. Rossi, why does that sound familiar, but I shrug it off. "But it won't do you much good; they died a long time ago. I was in foster care, but I can't go back. You can drop me off at the homeless camp. That's where I stay at." She says softly. Wyatt hurries out of the room to start looking for who this girl is.
This girl is homeless; what foster care program was she going through. How do they lose a child, especially one as beautiful as her?
"Why did you run away?" I ask her; I'm sure I won't like the answer.
"My foster family wasn't a good one. Larry, my foster father, used to molest me, and he raped me when I was ten. So I ran away."
I can't believe this girl has been through so much. She is so young. I can't help but reach out and caress her cheek that wasn't injured. She flinched for a second but realized I wouldn't hurt her and leaned her face into my hand.
Rita and Paula came up and helped her take a bath. When she came out of the bathroom, she looked like another person. She still looked beat up, but her long black beautiful hair was brushed out, and all the dirt on her body was cleaned up. Most of the spots on her body weren’t bruises but dirt. She looks beautiful. She notices me looking at her, and she smiles softly.
"Thank you for helping me." She says softly. "I'm sorry I'm making so much trouble for you." She said.
Hearing her apologize for something she didn't do, broke me. I can't let this girl leave. I claimed her as mine. What she will be exactly, I'm not sure yet, but I know she is staying with me.
I help her lay down, and I go to move away when she grabs my hand. "I know you don't know me, and you have done so much for me, but could you stay with me." She says pleadingly.
"Sure, Princess, let me just grab a chair. I will pull it up close to the bed." She lets me go, and I grab the lounging chair in the corner of the room. I place the chair next to the bed.
"Thank you, I know you're probably really busy, but I don't feel like being alone," she says.
"No problem, Princess, I will be right here. You go to sleep now." She nods and closes her eyes. Soon she is fast asleep. I look at her for hours. I examine how her face is swollen and beaten on one side, and the other is so angelic. How could anyone do this to her? It will never happen again, not when she is with me.
The following day I was woken by Wyatt. He must have the report on her ready. He looks so tired like he has been up all night. I look over at her and see she is still fast asleep, so I quietly leave the room.
I follow Wyatt down the hall to the study again. I wish he would just tell me what he knows so I can get back to my Princess. But instead, he holds the door open for me and shuts it behind me once I'm in. "You need to sit down, Gabriel." He says. I am looking at him with confusion. This cannot be good, so I sit. "OK, what the hell is going on?" I ask.
"OK. This is about the girl." He says. Well, obviously, why else would he wake me up?
"What about her?" I ask
"I need you to think about the name Rossi. Why would that name sound familiar?" So I think about it for a while. What he wants me to get is not clicking in my head.
"I don't know, just fucking tell me. Stop beating around the bush." I shout.
"Seven years ago, Gabriel." He says like that is supposed to help. But, "Seven years ago, we were sent to the house of Paul & Fiona Rossi for a job."
"OK, What kind of a job?" I ask, curiosity eating at me. I keep thinking of the name, but nothing is still clicking.
He lets out a breath and looks at me seriously. "To take them out. Paul and Fiona Rossi were rivals against us helping the Moretti's. They were the girl's parents." I don't know how to respond. What the fuck are the odds. I'm the one who made her an orphan and homeless.
"Listen, I know this is all hard to take in. I know you seem fascinated with her, but I think we should take her to the cities girl's home, maybe." She can't go anywhere. Everything has failed her, and it is because of me.
"No? What are you going to do then, keep her?" he asks.
"And what if she finds this information out?"
"She won't because only me and you know, and neither of us will be telling her." He looks at me like I'm crazy. "I understand you are skeptical right now, but I am the cause of everything bad in her life. If I didn't kill her parents, I wouldn't have had to save her last night. All of this is on me. This is a sign I need to make it right with her, that I need to help her." He is still looking like he is not sure about anything I just said.
"I never heard you talking like this. This isn't how you usually work. I never even seen you help anyone, let alone a teenage girl. But you do what you need to do. I won't say anything. I just hope this doesn't blow up in your face."
"I am going to get back now before she wakes up. This stays between you and me. Burn that file. I don't want any trace of it left. I will take care of her. She will be completely untouchable."
Four years later.
She is gone. I have checked the whole house, and I can't find her anywhere.
"Wyatt, Have you seen Frankie?" I ask
"Not since last night before she went to bed. Don't you both share a room?" he laughs.
"This is not fucking funny. I haven't been able to find her anywhere, have the guards start a search for her. I will check the cameras. If anyone touched her, they would be dead." He rushes to inform the guards that Frankie is missing, and I head to security.
I get into the security room and ask to see all the tapes from last night.
"We went to sleep around 11 last night, so start the cameras that point," I tell Niko. He starts to run the tapes from 11 PM and slightly fast forwards it. It takes a bit, but I finally see her leave the room around 2 AM. My heart begins to pound in my chest. What could she be doing? She is heading down the hallway, she becomes out of frame, so we have to switch to another angle. This one shows her creeping down the steps. Unfortunately, one guard is patrolling, and she ducks, so he can't see her. As soon as the guard is passed, she moves down the stairs and out of frame again. The next angle shows her stopping at the security panel to unlock the back doors, and she punches in the numbers to get out. As soon as she is outside, she crouches so the guards don't see her. She gets behind a bush and pulls out a duffel bag. She left me. My heart breaks the more I watch her on the screen. Why would she leave me? Have I not been good to her? I have done everything for her over the last few years. I even helped her get rid of her foster parents. Why would she leave me now? I watched as she snuck by multiple guards and climbed over the fence. Now my Princess is gone. How could all these men be incapable of ensuring she doesn't leave.
I take out my gun and shoot Niko in the head. I go through the rest of the house and kill any guard I saw on the cameras while she was escaping, and I kill them too. They let her go. They didn't do their jobs, and now she is gone. Why would she leave me?
"What the fuck is going on" Wyatt yells as I kill Hendrix, the last guard on the tape. "We have at least seven guards dead, and Niko is dead. What the fuck is going on, Gabriel?" I look at him, my heart completely breaking. This is why I don't love anyone. It never does any good.
"She is gone," I say. "Have someone clean this up and hire better security."
"What do you mean she is gone, Gabriel?" he asks.
"She snuck away from me in the middle of the night, took a bag, and fucking left. She is fucking gone." I scream at him. "Get everyone you can outside the compound to search for her. She needs to be found as soon as possible." I walk away with my head down. What could I have possibly done?
When I get back to our room, I look through the closets; all her clothes are still there. I look at her vanity; her brush and makeup are still there. I go into the bathroom, and everything is still right where it was before. This has me hopeful that she will come back. But my stomach drops when I see a letter sitting on the nightstand. I look at the envelope with my name in her handwriting, and I open it.
By now, I am sure you know I am gone. I am sorry I had to leave you like I did, but I know you wouldn't have let me leave if I didn't. You have been good to me for the last four years, and I appreciate everything you have done for me.
Yesterday afternoon, I walked to your office and heard you and Wyatt talking. I was just going to wait outside until you guys were done. I stood there for a few minutes before I overheard Wyatt bring me up. I know you will be disappointed that I was eavesdropping, but I couldn't help myself.
You both were talking about my parents. My real parents. I now know you killed them. I didn't know right away what I was going to do, but the more I thought about it, you were the cause of everything wrong in my life. I know you tried to make up for it with everything from our years together. But I can not get over the fact that everything that happened to me was your fault in most ways.
I can't be with the person who did this to me. You were the best thing in my life for the last four years, but you were also the worst thing that ever happened. So I know you will be looking for me, but I hope you can understand that I don't want to come back. Sorry, my love, I can't forgive some things.
She knew the truth, and she left. She has no plans of coming back. I told her often not to eavesdrop, and she never listened.
"I have everyone looking for her" Wyatt approaches me and notices the letter in my hand. "Is that from her?" He asks. This all happened because he brought up a conversation that was supposed to die four years ago, and he brought it up anyways. This is his fault. I stand up and turn to him with an evil glare I haven't had since she came into my life.
"She left because she knows about her parents. She knows I killed them because you couldn't keep your mouth shut." He slowly starts to back away and stuttering his words.
" Gabriel...I...I didn't do an..anything. What are you...you talking about?" I pull out my gun and let it hang to my side. "Co...come on Gabriel, Yo...you cant sh....shoot me."
"She overheard you and me talking yesterday afternoon in the office. She heard you bring up her parents. I told you never to bring that up again." I raise my gun and aim it at him.
"Gabriel, I'm so....sorry. But you ca...can't kill me."
There is a loud bang, and Wyatt is screaming in pain. He is gripping his leg close to where I blew out his knee cap. "You are lucky that I see you as my only family, or you would be dead right now," I tell him.
"I'm sorry, Gabriel." He cried. I call Wilson to come to check him out.
This isn't over, Princess. I will find out and bring you home. You will be my Queen. You can't hide from me, Francesca Rossi.