Blue Sunrise

A young woman's search for love.

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1. Chapter One

I was the only person sat at the bar, which was probably because the club had only just opened. Peeling my jacket off, I ordered a drink. I didn’t know how long I sat there in my own little bubble draining drink after drink, completely oblivious to the people around me and the music that was pounding away in the background. My cheeks were red from the hot club and my eyes were threatening to well with tears. Resting my head in my hand I propped my elbow on the bar and closed my eyes.

“You changed your hair.”

My breath caught in my throat. It was him. No I must have imagined it. He wouldn’t be here. Why would he be here? He had told me that he didn’t want me, that I wasn’t enough for him, that . . . that he didn’t love me.

“No,” I said as a tear escaped and slid down my cheek.

“No you haven’t changed your hair?” he asked amused and I felt him sit down beside me. “Have you looked in a mirror recently?” He ran his fingers through the short, black strands of hair on my head, making my skin tingle in pleasure. “I like it. It’s sexy. Elyse, baby, what’s wrong?” His hand went to my thigh and I flinched but he didn’t move it. “Look at me.”

Reluctantly, I lifted my head and turned to face him, my insides immediately turned to jelly. God he was actually here. His breathtakingly handsome face was close to mine and his green eyes were fixed on me.

“You’re crying,” he said, reaching out a hand and brushing the tears from my cheeks. “Why are you so sad, baby?”

Clenching my hands into fists I replied bitterly, “Hmm, I don’t know, maybe because the last three weeks have been a living hell. What are you doing here, Ruben?”

His luscious lips drew into a smile. “I’m back, baby.”

Gazing at him warily, I said, “What does that mean? And stop calling me baby.”

“It means that we’re together again, Elyse. I want you back,” said Ruben, his blonde hair a kaleidoscope of colours thanks to the club lighting.

Gaping at him I felt my heart rate increase. “You . . . you want me back?”

Ruben’s hand slid further up my thigh, causing my breathing to hitch. “Yes, baby.”

“But . . . but you said that you didn’t love me, that . . . that I wasn’t enough for you.” My voice broke at the memory and I blinked back tears.

Ruben caressed my cheek gently. “I was an idiot. I want you, baby, only you.”

I closed my eyes feeling blissful. He wanted me. Ruben wanted me.

Pressing his lips to my jaw and neck he said, “I don’t know how I survived these last few weeks without you, Elyse. It was like I wasn’t alive at all. I’m nothing without you, baby.”

Ruben’s lips moved to mine and he pulled me onto his lap, wrapping an arm around me. I still couldn’t believe it. Ruben was here and he wanted me! I squeezed his muscular arms as his tongue met mine. Ruben’s hand went inside my skirt moving north. A part of me knew that this was wrong and it fought against the alcohol gaze and my love for Ruben to be heard.

“Wait.” I panted pulling away.

Ruben’s hand stopped and he stared at me, his green eyes full of desire.

Shaking my head I tried to push away from him but he wouldn’t let me go. “You don’t love me.”

“I want you, Elyse.” He purred gripping my thigh. “And I know that you want me. What’s the problem?”

Struggling to break free, I said, “But you don’t love me.”

What are you doing? My mind was screaming at me. You’ll make him leave again!

Ruben trailed kisses down my neck making my skin feel like it was on fire. “Come on, baby. Let’s go back to my place.”

“No, let go of me.”

Standing up, Ruben grabbed my wrist. “Play nice, baby.”

I tried to shove him away but he wouldn’t release his hold on me. “Ruben, let me go!”

“Is there a problem here?”

We turned to find a dark haired bartender watching us, his expression grim.

“No,” replied Ruben coldly. “We were just leaving.”

“I’m not going home with you,” I snarled.

The barkeeper placed his hands on the wooden bar. “Am I going to have to call security?”

Ruben’s eyes darkened and without a word he let go of me and disappeared into the crowd.

Sighing in relief I returned to my stool, rubbing my wrist. “Thanks.”

“No problem,” said the bartender, his blue eyes kind. “Did you know that guy?”

“He’s my ex.”

The barkeeper nodded. “Ah, I feel your pain. I’ll get you a drink free on the house. What would you like?”

Something to make me forget that I just refused to get back together with the man I loved.

“Vodka and coke please, better make it a double. Just put it on my tab.” With a groan I laid my head on the bar.

“I’m Alec by the way. What’s your name?” he asked placing my drink beside my head.

“Stoker, Elyse Stoker.”

“As in Harrison Stoker’s daughter?” Alec sounded surprised.

“Yes.” I dug my nails into my knees feeling scared. What if Ruben didn’t speak to me again? What if he didn’t want me back now? What had I done? Sitting up I wiped my eyes and drained my drink in one go.

Alarmed, he said, “Whoa, how many of those have you had?”

“I’ve lost count,” I answered depressed. Retrieving my phone from my handbag I entered Ruben’s number.

Alec had been wiping the bar and he paused. “You’re not calling him, are you?” Seeing my guilty expression, he snatched my phone from me before I could dial the number. “That’s a bad idea, Elyse.” Alec put the phone in his pocket.

“Give it back!” Leaning over the bar I tried to reach Alec but he was too far away.

“I’ll return it to you later.” He smiled. I muttered something under my breath and Alec rolled his eyes at me. “Believe me I’m doing you a favour.”

Alec disappeared to serve someone and I dropped my head into my hands. I hated myself so much at that moment. Why hadn’t I left with Ruben? He had told me that he wanted me back. But not that he loved you. My mind sneered at me. Did that really matter so much? You know it does. All I wanted, all I had ever wanted, was to be loved.

 

 

“Hey, Elyse, it’s time to go. The club is closing.” Alec gently shook me awake.

Lifting my head I blinked sleepily. “Huh? What?”

“Its closing time,” said Alec watching me.

Groaning, I pulled my jacket on and grabbed my handbag. I stood up and the room span.

“Whoa, careful there.” Alec steadied me, his hands on my shoulders. “You okay?” He peered at me concerned.

      Rubbing my eyes, I felt lightheaded and slightly nauseous. “Ask me again in five minutes.”

“Do you live far from here? Shall I call a taxi for you?”

My mouth was dry so I said, “Can I have some water? My flat’s just around the corner.”

“I’ll walk you then.” Alec let go of me and after waiting to make sure that I wasn’t about to fall over he got me a glass of cold water from the bar. “Here, drink this and then we’ll go.”

“Does being a bartender usually entail walking drunks home?” I asked in between gulps of refreshing water.         

Alec smiled. “No, but I’ll make an exception in your case.”

“What, because of who I am?” I frowned unhappily.

“No.” He sighed in annoyance. “Because I like you. You’re not like all the other billionaire’s daughters.”

It was true. I really wasn’t.

Alec retrieved his leather jacket and slid an arm through mine to support me. As we exited the club he bid goodnight to the other barkeepers and the security guards.

“Which direction?” he asked once we were out in the cool night air.

“Left.”

It took us barely five minutes to reach the building that my apartment was in.

“Holy shit.” Alec swore his eyes wide as he gazed up at the skyscraper. “You live here? What am I saying? Of course you do. What floor?”

“Top.” I typed the entry code into a keypad and the glass door slid open.

Staring at the modern foyer with marble floor, Alec let me lead him to the elevator.

“I’ll be fine from here,” I said pressing the call button.

“Are you sure?” he asked sounding slightly disappointed. Maybe he had wanted to see what my flat looked like.

I gave Alec a grateful smile. “Yeah, thanks for walking me home. I’ll probably see you at Blue Sunrise again.”

“I’m working there again tomorrow night. Maybe see you then?”

“Maybe, goodnight Alec.” I held out my hand for him to shake.

Laughing he took my hand. “Goodnight, Elyse.”

The lift arrived and I got inside, waving to Alec as the doors closed. Leaning back against the mirrored wall I dug my keys out of my handbag as the lift carried me to the top floor. I couldn’t wait to crawl into bed and fall asleep. Once I was in my apartment, which was the entire top floor, I went into the kitchen only to find Ruben stood there completely naked.

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