My Addiction: Second Chances Series (13 page)

BOOK: My Addiction: Second Chances Series
13.62Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

“Why?” I managed to asked.

“Well, if we continue to make a lot of noise like we just did, they will surely kick me out.”

I laughed and hugged her against me. I kissed her ear and said softly, “I love you, Ana.”

“Mmm,” she moaned. “I love you too”



I woke up that night to an empty bed and whispering. I climbed out of the bed and walked, naked, to find where the whispers were coming from. As I got in the living room, Ayana was hanging up her phone looking perplexed and downright afraid.

“What’s up?”

She must not have heard me coming as she jumped and damn near dropped her phone out of her hand. She shook her head and began to purse her lips to say something when I put my hand up to stop her.

“Don’t insult me and say nothing, Ana. What’s going on?”

To her credit, she closed her mouth and just looked at me. I knew she was battling over what to tell me, and I let her.

Finally, she sighed. “I need to go out for a few hours”

“Okay where?”

“Bradley, I…”

I walked further into the room. “No, Ayana, you aren’t leaving here until you tell me where the hell you’re going.”

She stood. “I can’t tell you, okay? I just...”

Well, that was all I needed to know. I turned and headed back into her room to grab my shit. I told myself I wasn’t doing this again and I meant it. If she can’t see how I feel about her, what she means to me, then I can’t be with her.

“Bradley, wait,” she pleaded as she made it into her bedroom after me.

I didn’t look at her as I got dressed but I vowed, “I’m not doing this again, Ana!”

“I told you, Brad, it’s not what you think, okay? This has nothing to do with my brother.”

I spun to face her. “Yeah? Then what is it?”

When she didn’t answer, I moved to her bathroom with my bag in my hand. I heard her following me.

“Bradley, please don’t go. Please I…” She trailed off, mainly because I walked right past her and headed for her door.

“Okay, I’ll tell you.”

I stopped but I didn’t turn around. My hand was inches from the doorknob and lock.

I heard her sigh and then she said, “A few months, ago a friend of mine was beat up badly. She doesn’t have any family to help her so I’m all she has. She needs me to keep her safe because she can’t do it on her own. The guy that beat her up is looking for her. If he finds her, he’s going to kill her for sure. I’ve been doing my best to not let that happen.”

I turned around slowly to this bullshit story, but the look in her eyes told me this wasn’t bullshit at all, well at least not all of it.

I asked her, “Why you? What the hell can you do to keep her safe, Ana?”

She shook her head and moved closer to me. “I’m not doing anything, okay? I’m just keeping her company, getting her food, essentials stuff like that, at least until we can get her away from here.”

“Who beat her up?”

“I don’t know,” she answered all too quickly.

“Come on, Ana, I know when you’re lying.”

“Brad, I’m not lying, okay? I don’t know who he is, but I know what he looks like because I witnessed her getting assaulted.”

It was my turn to move closer to her. “Did you call the police?”

She shook her head. “No, I-”

“Why the hell not?” I retorted

“I just didn’t think about it. I went to her and got her out of there as fast as I could. I’ve kept her safe since. And at one point I felt like I was in over my head. I tried your brother, but he refused to help, so I was on my own.”

“No, I don’t believe that. My brother wouldn’t just turn someone away that needed help.”

“Yeah, Brad, maybe the brother you used to know or maybe if someone else went to him sure. But I was the one to go to him, and he didn’t help me, so I’ve been doing this alone.”

I folded my arms to my chest. “Okay, and what do you have planned? Are you going to keep her hidden forever? Do you think I’m letting you leave my bed, our bed, every night, in the middle of the night to check on her?”

She took a deep breath. “I don’t know. I’m working that out. But in the meantime, I just need you to trust me.”

I laughed because, shit, I couldn’t help it.“You want me to trust you, seriously? Do you remember the last time I trusted you?”

“Bradley…” I saw her eyes get moist, but I ignored her.

“I told you if you were into some shit—”

She moved closer to me. “I’m not. Brad. I’ve told you the truth. I’m not into any drugs. I’ve showed you that I’ve not touched any form of drugs for years. This has nothing to do with my brother, and everything to do with me just helping out a friend.”

“Yeah, a friend that you’re just now telling me exists. A friend that, if they meant that much to you to leave me for in the middle of the night, you, would have told me about them by now,” I huffed. I backed up from her. “You know what, just forget it. You go do what you have to do, Ayana. Go help your friend.”

As I moved to the door and unlocked it, she said to my back, “Where will you be? Will you be over your brother’s?”

I closed my eyes and said simply, “I don’t know,” and walked out the door.









“If you just give me a small chance, I will prove it to you that I will be one of the best decisions you’ll ever make” – Unknown Author

Chapter 8 – Ayana


“What are you going to do?” Noelle asked me.

We were sitting in the living room of the warehouse apartment after my fight with this crazy chic that kept trying to bite me. Please believe that fight didn’t last long and I didn’t care who was pissed. I’d be damn if that bitch bit me. She sharpened her teeth, so they would be pointy. No, she wasn’t getting close to me at all. When I saw her show her fangs and go after my neck, I knew this fight was over. No telling what she had. When the crazy girl gave me the window, I did a roundhouse kick to her temple and knocked her the hell out.

I had to make up some excuse to Ramone to get him to let me leave. He and Santos’ man tried to set me up for another fight since I knocked my opponent out so quickly. I didn’t think he would let me leave on my own accord, so I started dry heaving, blaming a hit this girl gave me in my stomach as the reason. I guess I should thank Santos. When he came up to me, touched me and caressed my back, I brought up the water I had just consumed.

It was the fear and nothing else that caused me to do that. He got pissed as he moved out of the way and told Ramone to let me go. I then drove as fast as I could to Noelle so we could figure out together what to do. I was scared half out of my mind, and I honestly believed our time had run out.

“I don’t know, but I need to figure out something,” I said as I shook my head.

“Why don’t you call Martins?” she offered and I shook my head again.

“I think Ramone is off the reservation.”

“Are you sure? I mean, do you have any experience working undercover? Maybe he’s putting up the front for the case.”

“No, I don’t have any experience, but I know what a crook looks like. And even though he’s always looked that way to me, it seems things are getting worse. You haven’t seen his eyes. He’s filled with greed, Noelle, and he seems very desperate to prove himself to Santos. Desperation is the ingredient for stupidity and you know he’s stupid already, so no telling what he’s capable of doing. I think if Martins doesn’t know about him and I tell him, he may reach out to Ramone and tip our hand, or he may know anyway and still tip our hand. I don’t think we can trust any of them.”

Noelle took my hand in hers. “Okay, then what do we do? Because, Ayana, you can’t do this anymore. I’m afraid that if you go fight again, you might not come back.”

I smiled, trying to reassure her, but I couldn’t pull it off. I was thinking the same thing, which was why I was scared shitless.

“Can you trust someone else? Maybe Brad?” she asked.

I shook my head. “I can’t bring him into this. I just need some time to figure out something.”

“What about your brother? I mean, have you heard from him?”

I mentioned before that my brother was in hiding well. I hadn’t seen or heard from him in weeks. He gave me Martins’ number and just disappeared. No one on his side of the fence knows about me, except for the guys upstate and they promised, on their creed or something, that they wouldn’t reveal that Terrence had a sister.

I closed my eyes, trying not to let the tears fall, but it was hopeless.

Noelle put her arm around me and pulled me to her chest. She rocked me back and forth and tried her best to reassure me.

“Don’t worry, okay? We have all night to try and figure out something. Everything will be fine. Trust me.”




For the rest of the night that’s exactly what we did. We talked out every scenario we could think of to get both of us out of this mess and before dawn, we came up with a viable plan that I thought would work. I had to get things started and I had an idea on just how to do it. The plan was risky, but if I did this right, in the end we would be okay. 

In between coming up with a way to save my life – hell,
of our lives- I couldn’t stop thinking about Brad. I’d texted him all night and into the morning. I told him I was staying at Noelle’s, that I loved him and I just asked that he didn’t give up on me. I kept looking at my phone and no matter how hard I prayed, he never responded.

When I finally left Noelle’s, I went home. The moment I opened the door to my apartment, the memories of him flooded my senses. I missed him as if he’d been gone for days instead of hours. I’d royally screwed this up. I’d asked for a second chance with him, he’d given it, and I was messing it up already.

I can’t lose him again. I just can’t.

I jumped in the shower and threw on a pair of black tights, an oversized t-shirt that came just to my hips, a jean jacket, and flats and ran out of my house. I needed to speak with him, and I knew of only a few places he would be; the gym, basketball court or Ice’s.

After a few hours had passed, I had no luck as I drove around to the places I thought he would be. I, finally and reluctantly, drove to his brother’s house. I willed his brother not to be home, but as I turned the corner of his street and I saw Lock’s F250, my wishful thinking was shot to hell.

I didn’t see Brad’s Audi but that didn’t mean anything. Most times, he parked his car in the garage.

As I walked to the house, dread started to consume me, but I swallowed the negative thoughts. Once I got to the door, I rang the bell.

Please be home. Please.

The door opened and a light-skinned black woman with impeccable beauty stood before me. I mean, I don’t go for the opposite sex, but this chick was hot. She had that aura about her that screamed, “
I’m from money and prestige. Who the hell are you?
” Her hair was brown and pulled back into a ponytail that, despite the up-do, the end of the ponytail reached to her shoulders. Her eyes were slanted slightly and her makeup was flawless. She wore a form fitting, long sleeve shirt that contoured her upper body and jeans that flattered her lower parts. She was very put together with not a hair follicle or strand of clothing out of place.

Of course, the same amount of scrutiny I gave her she gave me, except she smirked at me as she did it. I cleared my throat. “Um, is Brad here?”

Her smirk turned to a sneer, but before she said anything to me, I heard Lock say, “Was that him at the door?” as he barreled down the steps.

At this point, the woman opened the door wide for me to walk inside the house. However, once Lock’s eye fell on me, I so wanted to be any place but here.

“Where is my brother?”

The woman answered for me.

“She doesn’t know where he is either, and she’s also looking for him.”

Who is this woman?

Lock moved on me quickly. “What the fuck did you do?”

I frowned instantly in defense and said, “I didn’t do anything.”

“I find that hard to believe. My brother’s been up your ass since he’s been home. Now all of a sudden you’re looking for him?”

I folded my arms incredulously. “First of all, he hasn’t been up my ass since he’s been home. Secondly, how do you know what’s going on? You’ve been drowning in your own shit for too long to notice anything else.”

A very red-faced Lock stalked up to me, and I backed away from him, as he fussed, “You think this is all fun and games, don’t you? You think I wouldn’t destroy you if you’ve hurt my brother in any way?”

I didn’t answer his questions. My eyes returned to the woman that was now sitting at the dining room table. She looked bored as shit if you ask me, and I wondered again who the hell was she?

Lock, sensing my question suddenly smiled at me. “You’re dying to know who that woman is? Well, let me do the honors of introducing my brother’s fiancée Nora. Nora this is my brother’s waste of time, Ayana.”

Our eyes then met again, and I couldn’t control the surprise that was evident all on my face. I never would have imagined Brad was engaged to a black girl. I just knew he was with some snow bunny from some rich tycoon in Houston and here he’d landed a debutant black woman.

When Nora smiled at me, it honestly scared the shit out of me. It was as if she never did it often, so it didn’t suit her.

“Wow, Ayana, I’ve heard so many good things about you from, Braddock. You two were quite a pair growing up.”

“Yes we were,” was all I could say.

I looked at a satisfied Lock as he headed toward Nora. “Why are you here anyway? Why don’t you just call Brad and see where he is?” he asked.

I said hesitantly, knowing what Lock’s end game was, “I have tried to call him, but he hasn’t returned my calls.”

“Wow, you two fighting?” he asked.

I shook my head. “No, we’re just having a little disagreement, that’s all.”

Lock’s door suddenly opened and in walked the man of the hour. I watched Brad’s eye move to me first and he narrowed them at me. I couldn’t move nor could I speak. He looked so tired, angry, and hurt. I noticed he had a semi-formed five o’clock shadow that told me he’d been up all night; he hated having facial hair.

As Brad closed the door, he turned his attention to the dining room and Nora. He stared over at her and she stood and smiled.

She hesitantly moved toward him and he shook his head. He took a deep breath and said, “I don’t have shit to say to anyone in this room, so you’re wasting your fucking time. Go home,” was all he said as he moved to the back of the house and slammed his door.

Shit, this was far worse than I imagined. He was beyond pissed; he was livid.

Lock and Nora looked in the direction Brad went, stunned. I, on the other hand, was more worried than anything else.

None of us moved for a beat, then finally Nora ran her hands down the front of her and announced, “Well, I think I should go knock on the door and check on him, talk to him.”

She started for the room and I said to her, “I wouldn’t do that if I were you. He’s not going to open the door, much less confess his feelings to you.”

She scoffed. “Um, thanks for the advice, but I know my fiancé better than you. I know what’s best for him and what’s not, and I don’t need his ‘gal pal’ telling me otherwise.”

Gal pal?

I smiled. “By all means then princess, go ahead.” I folded my arms and looked at her.

For obvious reasons, she was engaged to what belonged to me, but the whole “gal pal” and “I know my fiancé better than you” comment was eating at me. I’d known him a whole hell of a lot longer than her and I knew she knew that. For her to arrogantly say she knew him better than I did was slap in the face.

I watched her look at Lock before she moved to Brad’s door. I heard a faint knock, then her voice called his name. “Braddock.”

Honestly, what was his mom thinking when she named these two Lockhart and Braddock? It seems Mrs. Candice Mills-Lacy – That’s right. She hyphenated her first ex-husband’s name with her eighth husband surname– was into Harlequin romances back in the day.

I looked over at Lock. “You know he’s not letting her in.”

We heard her knock again, then I heard a door open and heard Brad’s voice. I have to tell you, my lip dropped to the floor.

Lock looked at me with a smirk. “Well, it seems you’re no longer needed, so why don’t you just go home?”

We then heard a door slam and finally saw Nora emerge from the back. She looked a little pale and in shock. Lock’s smile quickly dropped but mine emerged. Nora refused to look at me, but I know she felt my eyes on her.

“What happened?” Lock asked.

She cleared her throat and ran her hands down the front of her body again as if she was wiping something off her, like perhaps dust from her face plant.

“He said he wants to be alone and asked that I leave,” she replied, stuttering as she spoke.

Yeah, I bet he used those words.

“I told you,” I said, not caring how it sounded.

Her head swiveled quickly to me and she frowned. “No, you said he wouldn’t open the door and well you were wrong; he did.”

I rolled my eyes and moved to Lock’s coat closet that was off the front door. I found what I needed and began straightening the wire. I walked purposefully to the back, ignoring the skeptical looks I received and headed to Brad’s door. I didn’t waste time announcing myself. I just stuck the wired hanger into the hole of the doorknob and unlocked the door. I walked in quickly and closed the door behind me.

Brad had his back to the door, looking out on the patio with one arm resting above his head. He turned as he heard the door open and then closed his eyes and shook his head. When he opened his eyes, he just looked at me. Still unshaven and in wrinkled clothes, he watched me. His eyes bore into me, making me nervous, self-conscious, and anxious.

I moved a little to him, but his voice stopped me in my tracks.

“Why the hell are you still here?” His voice was harsh and laced with more hurt than anything else.

“Where do you expect me to go?” I replied.

He shook his head slightly. “You really don’t want me to answer that.”

I exhaled and closed my eyes to try and gain strength. This shit was going to be hard.

“Bradley, I’m sorry okay?” I started.

“Yeah, I got those text messages…”

“Okay, so did you get that I have a plan that can get me out of helping Noelle?”

BOOK: My Addiction: Second Chances Series
13.62Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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