Excalibur ~ World from Ashes

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Chapter 2

As promised, he’d hauled me off as if it were nothing. Put in the back of his huge hummer, I pressed myself into the corner of the vehicle to try to keep some distance. I narrowed my eyes at him as he sat in the back with me, one arm up over the leather seat while the two that had accompanied him in the alleyway were in the front of the vehicle; the one with the sexy accent was driving.

“He is Zakiriya, people call him Zak though,” the guy next to me pointed to the one that was driving. Zak looked in the rear view mirror and smiled at me. He had short dark hair that was kind of spiky, dark brown eyes and a nice light brown skin tone. Zak was pretty well built too, taller than me and looked like he would be one of those muscle guys that hit the gym all the time.

“And this guy here is Jace,” he pointed to the one seated in front of him in the passenger seat. Jace glanced over his shoulder and gave a slight wave of his hand that was nearest to me as his arms were crossed over his chest. Jace was tanned with those gorgeous green eyes and dusty blonde hair that looked like a mess even if he pulled a comb through it.

I nodded at him slightly, still a bit wary about being in their car. I suppose if I thought about it, it wasn’t really a kidnapping. After all, I had ditched Alik after his little rampage. So, I figured it was better than being caught by my ex-boyfriend. Yup… ex-boyfriend. I suppose that one had been coming for a while, in fact it probably should have happened sooner rather than later. Whatever, I sighed inwardly and rolled my eyes a bit as I turned to look out the window.

“I’m Tristan,” the guy next to me continued.

I glanced over at him. I hadn’t been paying attention before when he had pinned me against the wall, demanding that I drop the empty gun I had. I frowned a bit as I watched him. His caramel locks of hair were long, brushing past his ears just a bit and layering across his forehead. It looked really soft, those layered locks. His hazel gaze was watching me carefully. I narrowed my eyes at him. What did he want? A smile, a thanks? Yeah, so not happening, my thoughts were dark as I crossed my arms.

“Why not introduce yourself? I’ve already done my part, it’s rude not to give your name in return.”

My teeth ground together. What an ass… has to go pulling the ‘rude’ card… “Valkyrie.”

He pulled his arm up that was resting across the back of the leather seat and leaned his head against his curled fingers as he lifted an eyebrow at me, “Valkyrie? That’s kind of cute.”

“C-cute?!”

Tristan grinned at me, “You have interesting eyes too. Where are you from?”

I frowned at him. He was referring to the fact that one eye was green and the other was pale blue, “Does it really matter where I’m from?”

“I suppose not,” he replied with a shrug, though he continued to grin at me, “Just trying to make conversation, Valkyrie.”

A shiver went down my spine. Damn… the way he said my name. I glowered at him though, he was teasing me. The car took a sudden left turn and my body went to the right. The movement pulled at my wounds and I let out a sharp gasp of pain. Tristan moved across the seat quickly. His hands on my shoulders to steady me. He looked up to Zak who winced slightly as he glanced in the rear view mirror.

“Sorry, I will try to be more careful, but we are being followed.”

Tristan turned and looked out the back of the dark tinted windows. He gave a sigh of irritation as he narrowed his eyes. I turned to see as well, my heart in my throat yet again, blocking my ability to breathe correctly. Behind us were three black cars, one of them was the shiny Mazda sports car that Alik drove. I went tense in the seat. Tristan must have noticed because he looked over at me sharply.

“What’s wrong?”

“He’s gonna kill me…” my voice was barely a whisper as I stared out the window at the cars that were chasing us.

“Who?”

“Alik…”

“What? He knows Alik? Titan’s gang leader?” Jace’s sharp voice cut through my frozen body. A sharp sound filled the interior of the hummer and I looked over to see a silver gun shoved in my face. I gasped again and pulled back against the seat, adrenaline shocking my body.

“Jace,” Tristan’s voice was low but that commanding tone had returned.

“He knows Alik, which means one thing, Tristan. He’s from Titan.”

My hands went up slowly, “W-wait… I was from Titan, I was running away.”

“Bullshit,” Jace shot back leaning forward more.

Tristan had gone silent now as he pulled away from me and watched me carefully. Really, could this have gone any worse? I sat there, shaking my head at Jace as he looked pretty damned close to pulling the trigger of his weapon. Fear had pulsed through me and then after that was anger. My eyes narrowed as I lowered my hands and looked up past the barrel of the gun to Jace.

I just spent the morning, watching my ex-boyfriend kill two of my friends. Escaped the damned hotel where Alik had gone on a killing spree, sprinted for God knows how long through the middle of downtown. Got caught in between the two gangs fighting, almost got myself blown up by a fucking grenade, got shot and now I was being held at gunpoint, fuck this.

“Fuck you, man. I almost got killed three times today! That bastard back there killed two of my friends this morning already. He’s fucking insane! Why the hell would anyone in their right mind stick around?!”

My voice was sharp as I yelled at him, leaning forward so that I was closer to the gun as I shouted. Jace looked somewhat shocked, but then seemed to reinforce himself. He narrowed his eyes, eyebrows knitting together as his lips pulled into a deep frown. It was obvious that he didn’t believe me at all. Well fine, whatever. It wasn’t like this day could get any worse.

“Jace, lower the gun,” Tristan said suddenly as the two of us were having our stare off. Jace turned to him, shocked at the request.

“Tristan! He’s part of Titan, his target could be you!”

“T-target? What the hell are you even talking about?” I shouted, utterly pissed off.

Tristan shook his head, “I really doubt that.”

“He’s a damned good actor, Tristan. You shouldn’t trust him so easily.”

“Who said I trusted him?”

Oh my God… this is just fucking great, I thought as I leaned back in the seat. The car veered to the right and I was crushed against the door at the sudden turn. Gritting my teeth, I tried to push my burning body off of it to ease the pain. It was probably the fact that I was sitting and not moving very much that made it hurt even more. My limbs were beginning to grow stiff from the wounds. As I sat there, I had half a mind to just open the door and throw myself from the vehicle. My gaze dropped to the handle, the door was unlocked and I didn’t have a seatbelt on. I could be free of their insanity in seconds.

Then again… I would have to face Alik who was chasing after us. I suppose if I played it off right, I could tell Alik that they kidnapped me. Maybe that would keep him from flying off the handle and shooting me on the spot. That also depended on if I survived the fall from the car and if I didn’t get hit by Alik’s vehicle. As I sat there, staring at the handle and weighing my options there was a click and I jumped a bit.

The lock on the door had dropped.

I turned to Tristan who was watching me steadily. He gave a smile, “Let’s try not to do anything stupid, all right?”

In turn I glared at him, “Whatever.”

“Hold on!” Zak shouted then and something hit the back window.

I turned to see what it was only to be thrown forward as the tail end of the hummer was launched upward. I screamed, hit the driver seat and as the car slammed back down on all four wheels; I tumbled to the floor groaning in pain. Hands wrapped under my shoulders and pulled me up to the seat. I found myself in Tristan’s lap with him leaning over me.

“Faster, Zak. Take the next right,” Tristan ordered as he held me still against the seat, still hovering over me.

The hummer’s engine roared as Zak started to drive faster. I panted as everything burned, hissing every now and then as one or a couple of the wounds would flare up in a stabbing pain. After a while, I tried to sit up, but Tristan kept me down, his hand against the middle of my back, right between my shoulder blades.

“Stay there, it’s safer. Are you all right?”

I turned my head just a bit to look up at him and nodded slightly, “Yeah… somehow.”

He grinned at me, “Good.”

Rolling my eyes, I settled in for a long ride across his lap. Damn this was embarrassing. Although shortly after being laid down on the seat, I was thankful to have been there as a loud sound cracked against the back window. I took in a sharp breath and tried to sit up again only to be held down once more. Another crack and I figured out what it was. Someone was shooting at the back window. My heart lurched in my chest and I felt cold bile at the back of my throat.

“Zak,” Tristan called, his voice somewhere between worried and urging.

“I know, I know, I’m trying… hold on,” he said again and I cringed.

The car turned left sharply and I felt my body sliding further up Tristan’s legs. I ended up right against Tristan’s belt on his lap and my face ignited. I could feel the blood rushing there as I blushed furiously. What the hell was wrong with me? We were being chased, shot at and just because I was suddenly thrown on this guys’ lap I was blushing like a fucking idiot.

Tristan didn’t seem to mind though as he shifted to accommodate my sudden invasion against his crotch. I bit my lip as I tried yet again to push up. Tristan moved, his hand keeping me down still. Leaning over me, he frowned a bit, “Stop, it’s too dangerous. Stay there.”

“S-seriously?!”

He must have picked up on my panic for being in that embarrassing position because his frown turned into a grin again. This guy was going to seriously piss me off. He was teasing me again, wasn’t he? What the hell was wrong with him?

“We’ll lose them soon. Just relax.”

“Kinda hard to relax when you’re getting shot at!” I shouted back.

Then he did something totally unexpected and had my blood running first icy cold, and then burning hot. His fingers dragged through my hair, pulling the black locks away from my face in a soothing manner. He petted my head like this for some time, his fingers slowly trailing further and further down to touch the back of my neck and shoulder. It sent shivers through my body; it was such a gentle touch.

I was pretty sure by this point my face was as red as a beet as I lay there. Tristan just grinned at me, though his eyes kept shooting up to look out the windshield and then over the seat to see behind us. He was alert and keeping tabs on the situation while at the same time, keeping me calm with his soothing touch. It was sort of amazing to witness. As he turned to look down at me again, my entire body had gone limp as I lay on his legs like a rag doll.

“Better?”

“Shut up…” I muttered and tried not to look up at him.

Tristan laughed lightly, “Zak?”

“One sec,” his accented voice was soft and the car turned to the right, lurching as it hit something and just plowed over it or through it, I couldn’t tell which. Almost immediately the hummer turned right again and the vehicle came to a slow halt. He threw it into park and he and Jace got out.

I thought we were at our destination, so I tried to move. This time, Tristan let me sit up a bit. Looking out the windows, I noted that we were in a back alley. A gate was on my left and a giant building on the right. Behind us was a solid concrete wall and an alley where Jace and Zak were peering out into. The hummer idled gently as we sat there. Ahead of us, the alleyway continued on until it looked like a major street or something at the very end.

“Where are we?” I asked tentatively.

“Still in the city. We’re losing your friends.”

I frowned at that. Here I thought he was nice and understanding, “They aren’t my friends. Alik killed my only friends this morning, how many fucking times do I have to say it?”

Tristan watched me, his face stony as he leaned his head against his hand again. I seethed, and turned for the door. My fingers pulled the lock up and I reached for the handle. Tristan didn’t move but his voice stopped me for a moment.

“What are you going to do if you step out of this car?”

“Get away from you and that crazy asshole.”

“And then what? Where will you go? How are you going to survive? I don’t think you’d last more than a few days out there. Have you thought this through yet? I doubt you have. Your impulsiveness is going to get you killed.”

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