MoboReader> Romance > Beauty and the Bad

   Chapter 7 Seven

Beauty and the Bad By Aubrey Wolfe Characters: 39373

Updated: 2019-04-15 23:24


There was once a time, when I never thought I would attend a party. Yet, here I am, sitting next to Reece, with Angel and Dustin in the back seat.

On my way to a rave. I didn't even know if they actually existed, a party so exotic, so out of this world.

And I'm going to one, with the hottest guy I have ever met.

This is a fairytale. A dream come true. When I first accepted that I can't go back to my old life, and it would be better for me to start over, take the chance; I never thought that the decision would lead me here.

I wanted to step out of my comfort zone.

Well, I think I can successfully say that I have done that.

I look down at my clothes; a bright hot pink cut off tank-top that hugs my chest and every curve of my upper stomach, stopping just above my belly button, paired with white spandex pants. Angel and Athena came together and lent me whatever they could find to help me fit in.

I'm glad they did. When we arrive at the sketchy, almost abandoned looking warehouse, the entire place is covered in black lights, causing everyone to glow; both their clothes, and their skin. I walk past a few people covered in what looks like glow-in-the-dark paint, splattered all over their arms and legs, any part of their skin that is exposed.

"Wow, this place is..." I try and say, but no words come to mind to describe what I'm seeing. We push our way through the crowd, further into the warehouse and closer towards the pounding music.

Eventually, we break out of the crowd, onto a dancefloor; the only area in the entire place that looks like it has nice wood, instead of rough concrete. Angel and Dustin run off to join the large group of people jumping up and down, or dancing provocatively with their partners.

Reece's hand brushes against mine, drawing my attention up to his smoldering eyes, boring into mine.

"Would you like to dance?" he asks, having to practically kiss my ear for me to hear him. I bite my lip and look back at the crowd, watching everyone move expertly, or at least decently. Me? The only dancing I have ever done is practicing on my own in my room, or dancing with children when I taught lessons, and that was basic ballet.

Besides that, I have only ever danced at a party once; with Ethan, and I would barely call what I did dancing.

I don't think Reece would like to know the first and only time I have danced at a party, was with Ethan.

"Have you ever danced before?" he asks after I don't answer for a bit.

I shake my head, wanting to tell him everything, how I once had a passion for dance, and also wanted to maybe one day teach it professionally, but those seem like distant dreams now. Instead, I shut everything inside and play it safe.

No matter how bad I want to spill everything to him.

"Never too late to start." Reece is tugging me towards the dance floor before I can protest. He leads us to a more secluded area, where the music isn't as loud, and there isn't as many people jumping around wildly.

He guides my arms around his neck and rests his hands on my waist, lowering his lips to my ear. "Just follow me."

I bite my lip and duck my head slightly, nodding my head. He sways us back and forth, keeping my body pressed against his. I take small, deep breaths to try and relax, letting my body feel the music. It's a bit easier with the quick tempo music, unlike the music that was played the time I danced a bit with Ethan.

It's easier to feel the bass under my feet, and let the flow of the techno music guide me along with Reece.

He pulls me closer to him, my body flush against his, and drops his head into the crook of my neck, laying butterfly kisses along the hollow of my throat. I grasp the back of his head to steady myself, my head instantly lightheaded from his touch, my knees almost giving out from under me.

"Luck has never been on my side, " Reece starts to whisper, dragging me out of my sensual thoughts. I pull back and give him a confused, slightly dazed look. "That night I went with my brother to see Ethan, luck was definitely on my side."

"Why do you say that?" I ask, wanting him closer to me again. He drags his lips along my cheek lightly, nibbling my earlobe once.

"There's no chance I deserve to have you in my life. I met you that night by luck, " he stares, pulling back again to stare at me, his eyes intense.

"Why don't you think you could deserve something good?"

He breaks eye contact, no longer able to meet my gaze.

What is he hiding?

"That's a story for another day, let's just enjoy tonight, " he says. I frown, but let the conversation slide, not wanting to ruin the night for us, or anyone else. I only have a couple hours before I have to go home, to beat my mother before her night shift or whatever she is doing ends.

We continue to dance for a while, wrapped in each other's embrace, until we can no longer stand or feel our legs.

Reece pulls out his phone, looking at the time. "Can I take you somewhere? Before I have to bring you home?"

"Where do you want to go?" I ask.

He grins. "It's another surprise, come on."

***

After a few minutes of driving, Reece pulls up to a cliffside, overlooking a beautiful sunset, just above the crystal ocean line. The view is breathtaking, nothing I have ever seen, despite living in this country my entire life.

I really have to get out more.

I look over at Reece, who is looking out at the beautiful sight in front of his as well, the sun reflecting off his honey-brown eyes, making them look even warmer and brighter. I feel the heat creep onto my cheeks the longer I stare at him, amazed I have met such a gorgeous, mysterious man, who in just a few short days, had flipped my life upside down.

"I come here a lot, when I need a reminder of where I came from, where it all began. To also remind myself, to pause every now and then, to admire the view, " he says, and turns to look directly at me. "If you go too fast, you pass all the good things."

"But if you go too slow, the good things might pass you." The words pop into my head, and fly out my mouth. I'm not sure where they come from, but it's true. I have spent most of my life, taking care of my mother, letting her live her life and take all the risks.

Even before all that, I never did anything with my life, never took risks. I had spent 16 years, sticking to the rules, playing it safe. I don't have any wild memories or stories to carry with me, possibly pass on to my kids or grand-kids.

But now, in less than a week, I've made more memories and had more experiences than I ever thought I would.

All thanks to this mysterious, golden-eyed man, who has swept his way into my life like a fiery puff of smoke, sucking me into his world of fast cars and dark secrets without a second look back.

"How did you discover this place?" I ask.

Reece smiles faintly, as if remembering a distant memory.

"My father took my older brother and I here, before Thomas came around. He would make us jump off the cliff into the water, a way of teaching us that no matter how high up we climb, you can still plummet back to the bottom in on single fall. I never really understood what he meant, until I entered high-school, " Reece pauses and looks back out towards the water.

"What happened?" I ask quietly, touching his arm lightly to try and comfort him in some way.

"I was on the fast track to becoming a great athlete, my sport was American football, and I was amazing at it. During my freshman year, I was already being scouted by college drafters, wanting to get me into their schools the moment I graduated, but I had to keep my grades up and keep a good position in school overall. How hard could that be?" He scoffs and shakes his head.

"There was one morning, my dad took just me up here, telling Nathan to stay at home. He didn't say much to me, and just told me to jump, like he always did. But, unlike every other time, when he would give a thumbs up from the top, then jump in after me, he stayed at the top – and yelled for me to climb back up."

I look over the edge at where the wall of rock is, starting somewhere deep below the water, curving up to the top where we're sitting. Rock pieces and slabs are sticking out in sharp, jagged patterns all along the wall.

"He had you climb that?" I ask, my jaw dropping.

Reece nods. "It was the first and only time he had me climb it. When I made it to the top, he told me that, 'no matter how high you are, there is always a chance you can fall, and the climb back up won't always be smooth'. When he would make us jump, we would swim over to the beach area just a little further down the left, and walk back up on the grassy hill, " he says, and points over to where the cliffside dips on the left side of us.

"It is the easier way to get up, of course, and the wall is the harder. I knew what he was trying to teach me, but I didn't understand it until my junior year, when I was offered to be captain for my school football team, a position only ever given to seniors, but I was so good they wanted me to have it. Another player got jealous, and apparently already had a bit of vented up anger towards me before, so he sabotaged my perfect image, the one I had worked so hard to keep up, so I didn't mess anything up for college."

"What did they do?" I ask, my heart aching slightly.

"Someone tipped to the principal that I had drugs in my locker, and I was selling them around school property, though I had never even touched a drop of alcohol throughout my entire high school years, let alone drugs. But there it was, a rather decent sized bag of cocaine, sitting in my locker. It was obviously planted, and I knew exactly who had done it, but there was no way anyone would believe. His father was the head custodian, so he had access to all the keys for the building, which meant he also had access to it after school hours."

"Oh my god, that's terrible! What did they do to you?"

Reece frowns, his eyes darkening. "They expelled me, it ruined my perfect record, and no college looked twice at me anymore. I was done, my future athlete career in any sport was done, so I dropped out."

"You never even graduated?" After all the effort he put into everything? He just left it all without even making it to the end?

Reece shrugs. "I didn't see any point. Everything I worked for, was just torn down like that, and I finally understood what my father was trying to teach me all that time. I was so high up, as high as I thought I could be at that time, and I fell back down to the bottom, within the blink of an eye. Except this time, there was no easy or hard way back up. There was no way back up."

I look at him, wanting to say something to comfort him, but there isn't really anything I can say, that will make him feel the tiniest bit better. Instead, I reach out and grab his hand, squeezing it lightly. He turns his face towards me, his eyes softening and squeezes my hand back.

Our lips connect in a flash, moving together with desperate hunger like before. Every kiss with Reece, makes me feel like he's kissing me for the last time. I don't mind the intensity, the feeling of need he emanates, but it makes me wonder what goes through his mind.

The same thing goes through my mind; I know I'm lying to this man. I'm lying to everyone I meet. I'm not who I say I am, and one day I might have to pick up my new life, and do it all over again. Leaving all of them behind without so much as a good-bye.

I want to tell him so bad. I want to tell him, I might have to leave him one day, without a backwards glance. He might have to forget that I ever existed, because I might not be Haley Quinn the next time. That person will no longer exist.

I have to tell someone.

e were saying, our bodies were so close and we were talking too low. But even just looking at the two of us from the outside, you could tell something was up, good or bad, I'm not sure.

Knowing Ethan, he only saw everything bad. He now strikes me as that kind of person; the one who likes to spread the first thing he sees, and not wait to get the full story. The more I get to know him, the more I start to despise him, and I continue to thank god that I never kissed him.

I have also come to realize just how happy I am that Reece came to crash the party as well with his brothers, or else I might have never escaped Ethan, and we might be in a terrible relationship right now, instead of never having even gone on a date like he wanted. Something tells me he just wanted a date afterwards, because he had a feeling Reece and I have a thing, and wanted to try and beat him.

Anyone can see the competition between the two of them, even just looking at them now, it's as bright as daylight.

"I'll be right back, " Reece says to me, and strides off towards Ethan. I scramble out of the car and grab his arm before he can make it across the parking lot. Reece looks down at me, confused.

"Please, not here. Your car already draws enough attention, I don't need the school calling my mom, about a fight out front, " I say and plead with my eyes for him to understand.

He frowns, but relaxes and grabs my hand, squeezing it lightly. He tosses one more glare at Ethan over his shoulder, then leads us back to his car, holding the door open for me. I can feel his eyes on me the entire time, watching every inch of my body as I slide into the cool leather seats.

I can also feel the multiple stares from other students around the parking lot, and I catch a glimpse of Logan and Sissy, just as we pull out of the lot.

I'm already expecting either a phone call, or a bunch of texts by the time I get home.

From both of them, great.

***

"Do you think your mom will be out tonight again?" Reece asks, looking towards the empty driveway.

I bite my lip, remembering that Sissy and Logan asked to hangout tonight, and I already asked and got a surprising yes from my mother. She is going to be home tonight, so she can drive me there.

"You have no idea what that does to me, " Reece mutters, his voice deep and husky, catching me off guard. I look up to see his eyes smoldering with what looks like lust, causing my heart rate to spike. I realize then, his eyes are staring down at my bottom lip, trapped between my teeth.

I quickly release it, but it's too late. The gesture seems to darken the look in Reece's eyes, and he pulls me over the center console and onto his lap in seconds, his lips finding mine. His hands roam my thighs, trailing up the back of my shirt, and back down, like his hands are trying to remember every inch of me.

My hands occupy themselves by tangling them in his unruly curls, taking advantage of their presence while I can. I never even knew Reece had curly hair, since he keeps the sides of his head clean shaven, and the top is always greased back and kept tidy. Today, it looks like he didn't even touch it this morning.

He still looks insanely hot. An insane hot mess.

We eventually pull away for air, leaning against each other as we breath heavily, our shallow intakes the only sound in the car, besides my hammering heart, which I hope I'm the only one that can hear it.

Just as I manage to get my breath back, Reece's lips are on mine again, just as hungry and consuming as the first time. He pulls away a little sooner this time, throwing his head back against the seat rest, letting out a small groan.

"What is wrong with me?" he mutters, running a hand down his face. I get another flash of black ink from under his jacket sleeve, making out the top of what looks like a skull, or maybe just a head of something.

"There's nothing wrong with you, Reece, " I whisper, my hands playing with his jacket buttons. He sucks in a sharp breath when I say his name.

"There's everything wrong with me, Haley. You have no clue how obsessed I am with you, what you do to me. Even the sound of my name out of your mouth, drives me insane."

He slams his lips on mine, not giving me a chance to respond, and pulls away just as fast, letting out a small groan again. "I can't ever get enough of you." He leans back, staring me straight in the eye. "You do realize, you're never getting rid of me?"

I open my mouth to say something, but realize I don't know what to say, and shut my mouth.

"At this point, my need for you is too strong, I don't think I can ever let you walk away from me."

"Your need for me?" I mimic, my voice sounding strange.

Something flashes in Reece's eyes, too fast for me to really catch, but I swear it looks like sorrow. "You keep my demons at bay, Haley. It's been years since I've been able to get a good night's sleep, and to be honest, I still don't really. But when I wake from the nightmares, I think of you, and they're easier to deal with."

I don't quite understand what he means, but everything Reece says seems to be a riddle or mystery of some sort, and I can never figure out the hidden meaning.

"What do you mean, Reece?" I decide to ask out-right, instead of just remaining silent, wondering what he could mean.

He averts his gaze, his jaw clenching and unclenching, before he turns back to me. "Ever since I was young, I've had nightmares. No matter what I tried to do; medication, therapy, nothing worked. Eventually, everyone gave up trying, and I've been learning to deal with it on my own."

"That's horrible, " I say and reach out to him, resting my head on his chest. "What are the nightmares about?"

Reece remains silent for a few seconds, his hand coming up to rest on my back, rubbing up and down slowly.

"I'll save that for another day, when I think you're able to handle it. For now, I just want to stay like this for a bit, if that's alright?" he asks, placing his cheek against my hair, his other arm coming to rest on my thigh.

I just nod, closing my eyes and listening to his slightly fast heartbeat, slowing little by little as the seconds tick by. Eventually, we release each other and I reluctantly get out. Before he drives away, Reece rolls down his window and calls to me.

"You never told me if you were busy tonight."

"I am, actually. I promised friends from school that I would hang out with them tonight, I'm staying over at her place, " I say, and try not to bite my lip when the urge kicks in again.

Reece frowns, looking so adorable, it takes everything in me not to cave and say screw it. I don't want to bail on Logan and Sissy, especially after they saw me today with Reece in the parking lot. They know for sure something is up, and they are going to want to hear all about it tonight.

"No chance you could slip away at the end of the night for a couple hours?" he asks, trying to give me his best puppy dog eyes. It almost works.

"You went a couple days without me, I'm sure you can go one night without me again, " I say and wink at him.

His face goes a slight pink, and he opens and closes his mouth like a fish. "You say that like I can't live without you." He finally composes himself and slaps on a cocky smirk.

"Can't you?" I shoot back, turning on my heel this time and rushing inside, not giving him a chance to retort. My phone rings as soon as I slam the door and lean against it, and a text from Reece lights up.

No, I really can't.

My heart flutters in my chest and the heat rises to my cheeks. I don't deny it this time, since no one is around to witness me act like a love struck little girl in the middle of the foyer. I float up the stairs on a cloud, drifting around the room to get ready to see Sissy and Logan.

What is this man doing to me?

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