And she walked away, leaving a piece of glossy paper on the table.
Four pairs of angry eyes turned toward Bash, mine included. How could he do something like that to anyone, let alone Raven—the woman he said he loved more than life itself?
Before I could stop myself I was demanding an answer to that question.
I jumped to my feet and turned toward him. I’d never been so angry with Bash before in my life. In the fifteen months we had lived under the same roof we had become as close as brother and sister and we had confided in each other about nearly everything that was important to us. There had been times when I’d wanted to scream at him and even kick his ass a few times but I’d never been so close to murdering my surrogate brother until right this minute.
“How could you do that to her?” I found myself yelling instead of asking the question rationally.
As if there weren’t three other people in the room giving him the stare of death, two of which could probably break every bone in his
body without even really trying, Bash stood and glared down at me. That glare didn’t hide from me the complete and total fear in those eyes shooting lightning down at me. “I need for her to be pregnant. With that connection to hold us together I know I won’t lose her again.”
“Didn’t you think she should have a say in when she got pregnant?” I poked my finger into his hard chest. “It’s her body; she’s the one who will have to carry that baby for nine months and then push it out. You took all of the choice away from her. Whatever connection you might have had with her just got a lot thinner.”
His jaw clenched so hard I was sure he was going to break off a few teeth and I hoped he did. “Fuck…” he muttered under his breath and turned to glare out the kitchen window.
“You are such a fucking prick sometimes, Bash,” I yelled at him as I turned and left the kitchen.
I found Raven in the room I shared with Lexa. She was sitting on the rug in front of the bed playing with the dollhouse that she had bought my niece just days after Lexa and I had moved in. She had a smile on her face as she played with the three-year-old but it didn’t reach her olive-jade eyes, which were bright with a mixture of stormy emotions. In the short time I had known her I’d found out that it took a lot to make Raven cry. She didn’t like to get emotional about anything. So if she was close to tears then this was really upsetting her.
Or maybe it was the pregnancy hormones?
When I stepped into the room her head snapped up and her gaze turned a little less friendly when she saw me. She was still struggling with the whole idea of me living in the same house, alone with Bash for so long. I didn’t know how to prove to her that Bash and I would never have slept together even if there had been chemistry.
I sat down beside Lexa and picked up one of the dolls still on the floor between the two other females. “Wanna talk about it?”
“I’ve been dying to talk to Flick about all of it. She could help me through this, help me figure out how to handle this…” Her chin trembled for a few seconds before she bit her lip and shook her blonde head. “But she’s not here and I have no idea where she is or if she’s even okay.”
I nodded, knowing that Felicity’s running away was hurting her. Her best friend hadn’t told her about the biggest kind of tragedy and she felt as if she had failed her friend. “I’m sure she’s okay, Rave. She just needs some time to herself. You could talk to me, though. I’ve never been pregnant before and I don’t know what I would do if I were in your shoes right now… Probably cut the prick’s dick off if a guy did that to me…” I glanced at Lexa to apologize for my bad language but she wasn’t even paying attention to us. Her imagination had kicked in and she was off in her own little world with her dolls inside the dollhouse.
“You must think I’m an idiot for not realizing what he was doing sooner.” She grimaced and shrugged. “In the past he was always responsible for protecting us. He always wore something to keep me from getting pregnant… Honestly, back then I was so sure that we were going to be together forever that I started to resent those stupid condoms. I wanted his baby and thought that maybe if I did get pregnant, my brothers would go easier on him since he was the father of their niece or nephew.”
“That might have gotten him killed more than protected him.”
Raven laughed but it sounded hollow. “Yeah, I realized that as soon as I saw him in the hospital after Jet got finished with him. I took one look at how badly my brother had beaten him and knew that if we had gotten pregnant Bash would have been in the morgue instead of ICU.”
Remembering how bad Bash had looked days after that beating I shuddered at how he must have looked right after it had happened. “Bash said he didn’t try to fight back.”
“Jet said the same thing. Bash took his punishment and didn’t make a sound.” Raven reached for Lexa and pulled her onto her lap. “Which was why I couldn’t understand why he had left me… Why he would stay away. I thought that Jet had beaten his love for me out of him. I wouldn’t have blamed Bash if Jet had.”
“He didn’t,” I assured her. “Bash loves you more than anything or anyone.”
Her face closed up and she didn’t speak for nearly a full minute. “I love him, but I don’t know how to handle this. I don’t know how to feel about being pregnant with a baby I wasn’t ready for. Our relationship is still so rocky. I’m trying to learn to trust him again.”
“Forget about Bash for the moment. Don’t worry about him and just concentrate on you and that baby growing inside of you. Figure out what you want and screw everything else.” I stood and lifted Lexa into my arms. “Go for a drive and clear your head. If you ask Spider nicely he won’t let Bash near you for as long as you need.”
I left her sitting there, a thoughtful look on her face. I carried Lexa downstairs and sat her on the couch in the living room before turning the TV and Netflix on so that she could watch Daniel Tiger. I heard raised voices coming from the kitchen and hurried in there to stop anyone from killing anyone.
I found Gracie standing between Hawk and Bash. Bash wasn’t attempting to defend himself while Hawk called him all kinds of nasty names. Gracie had her hands on Hawk’s chest, the only thing keeping him from setting her out of his way and tearing his MC’s president into a billion little pieces.
What really surprised me was that Spider was still sitting at the table, drinking a beer now as if he were watching a show on TV. It obviously didn’t bother him that Hawk was about to eviscerate his best friend. “Enough,” I yelled as I put myself between Gracie and Bash¸ adding just a little more protection to the beast of a man standing behind me. “Everyone just calm down and take a deep breath. Hawk, you knew that Bash and Raven were together so you can’t exactly be surprised that she’s pregnant.”
His cheeks turned pink and if the situation hadn’t been so serious I would have laughed at the fact that he was blushing. Of course it was a mixture of rage and the thoughts of his sister actually having sex, but still, Hawk Hannigan blushing? Hilarious. “She didn’t exactly agree to get pregnant, Willa.”