Chapter 2 – Silent Control
“They just called us for dinner, everyone has already headed in.” His voice endearing to say the least, Noah commanded my sight and attention as I attempted to swallow the knot he caused in my throat. Standing on my own avoiding his hand, I stepped around Noah heading for the dinning room needing to make our relationship clear. Clearly Lassa had not given this one the run down beforehand. Pausing and turning in the doorway to look back finding Noah standing casually in the same spot I had left him, I found myself wanting to be clearer than normal.
“As a note Noah, I suggest if you want to keep Lassa happy you stay by her side. Coming near me will only end this relationship with her faster than you anticipated.” His silence telling in the most unusual and unexpected of ways, Noah took a few steps toward me appearing not fazed or caring in the least. His body language as far from concern as it could be, he watched me with an almost smirk pulling up the sides of his lips.
My eyebrows lifting as I attempted to read his unreadable face, Noah walked the final steps between us growing impossibly close. My eyes focused on his chest, he was so close I could see the black lines of tattoos beneath his shirt as he spoke at a whisper. “I like the sound of my name on your lips Olivia.” My eyes widening, jaw clenching, and cheeks no doubt reddening, I almost wanted to turn away as I beat down the urge holding my ground even as my knees buckled. “And Thank you for your concern Olivia, but it is not me that needs to keep that acquaintance of mine enthralled. In fact, I have already spotted something I may very well prefer.”
My mind almost boggled at how confident and nonchalant Noah was concerning my sister, even if it was just in front of me, I was startled to say the least. His words insinuating myself as a preferred partner, I could not help the feeling of satisfaction washing over me as I remained straight faced and unyielding to his flattery.
Stuck in place, I lifted my eyes finally to catch Noah’s before his smile widened. Moving to the side of my body purposefully brushing past me in his designer suit moving through the doorway, my chest sucked in a deep breath of fire. Turning and following behind Noah only moments later, I could not shake the pins and needles surfacing across my skin. The almost pain growing worse as I entered the dining room spotlighted by the awaiting gazes of my family and arranged intended, all I wanted to do was squirm.
An empty spot on either side of Lassa, my chest clicked with annoyance as I thought for a reason for Julian to be on my right instead of my left. His pandering and assumed closeness from the ask would still surely beat the immense disgust I would feel and endure beside Lassa. Noah’s hands hitting the back of her chair and pulling it slightly out from the table, I watched as Noah ushered Lassa down a seat meaning he would put himself between the two of us and Lassa beside father. “This is a good opportunity to spend some time with your father is it not Lass? You have spoken of missing him much lately.”
Missing father? Lassa? My mind ticking over I thought of her childish approach to father earlier. Watching my father’s face almost distort at the suggestion, I waited to hear an outburst from Lassa at Noah’s words to get her own way as she would with any other man. Though to be honest by the time they usually came here, they were so well trained as to not ask such a request of her knowing better. Lassa’s voice coming out as sweet yet innocently as my mothers, her head dipped as she remained sitting in her pulled out seat. “I thought it would be good for you to be close to father for your business matters.”
Unable to see the look on Noah’s face it was clear when the air grew thin, and the room silent that I had missed something. Watching as Lassa bowed to Noah’s request without another word, she closed her mouth sliding across to the chair beside father seamlessly. Noah moving forward took her seat that placed him squarely beside myself as he turned to watch me with a spark of something I did not understand in his eyes. Seeming almost sheepish in her demeanour, Lassa kept my attention till Julian stood and captured my hand pulling me toward the table. Seemingly intending to place me in his seat at the corner of the table by my mother, I found Noah standing and pulling out my chair for me as my name on his lips sent goosebumps down my spine, “Oliva.”
Noah’s taking position behind my chair beckoning me forward, I almost cringed as Julian’s hand fell lower to the small of my back guiding me forward. Sensing Julian’s annoyance through his touch, I could not help but feel immense respect for how Noah kept control of Lassa, it was like she could not even bare her teeth in his presence.
“Thank you Mr Lonte, how chivalrous of you.” My voice calm and collected, I immediately turned to Julian whose eyes bore daggers into Noah over my head as I scooted forward. Noah’s chair following suit, I could feel his chair unnaturally close to my own as his bicep that felt thicker and stronger than it appeared brushed against my shoulder purposefully.
My mother breaking the silence and talking nonstop as to steer the conversation entirely setting the tone for the dinner, I soon relaxed into my chair until Noah spoke to Julian. Near choking on my food, I found Noah’s hand on my back giving supporting taps as my insides urged to flood out. “So, Mr Denton how long have you and Oliva been married? Lassa did not mention her younger sister had been married.” Noah’s voice casual, I shrugged away from his touch setting my back on fire as I turned to Julian expecting him to immediately deny the error.
“They are not married.” Lassa’s voice clear and concise, the table once again fell to silence as I found myself in her gratitude for the first time in my life.
“Oh, I apologise that is my mistake. I thought I heard you say earlier that you were a family member. Are you a cousin perhaps?”
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