|| Hazel ||
I was shaken with fear. My first initial thought was that I wasn't going to be able to see my sister again, for a long time. Maybe even forever. I pushed the thought aside. This is for the best, I said to myself, this is to protect Malia. Luke was very quiet as he drove. I had given him the directions to my house.
It was around one in the morning when we pulled up to my neighborhood. The streetlights flared with brilliant light as the moon hung high in the sky. Stars were sprinkled across the blanket of darkness above us.
"This is your neighborhood?" Luke asked breaking the silence.
"Yes," I replied. "You sound surprised."
"I didn't know you were rich," He replied.
"My mom and dad are rich, I'm not," I corrected.
He pulled up to my house. We both got out at the same time. I furrowed my brows at him.
"I can do this alone, you know?" I asked.
"No matter where you are, you're no longer safe. Thomas is on the loose and looking for you. You need all the protection you can get," He replied.
I caved in and continued walking towards the front door. Luke had his hands stuffed in the pockets of his leather jacket. His neck was decorated with swirls of various tattoos. My eyes left his neck and focused on the door as I unlocked it slowly. If I woke King up, that would be the end of me.
I tip toed in and motioned for Luke to do the same. Mom always told me not to let strangers in the house, she always told me to never befriend people like Luke but here I am, running away with one. Can I trust him? Will he end up killing me or worse? At this point, I'm just desperate to save my sister.
I opened the door to my room and turned to light on. I waited until Luke entered the room before closing the door. The white teddy bear stuffing was still all over my bedroom floor. The beheaded bear with it's eye ripped out stared right up at us. Luke looked at me, my cheeks flared.
"I had...issues," I said as I walked past him and into the closet where I grabbed a bag before I began to fill the bag with clothes and essentials. Out of the corner of my eye I saw Luke looking at the picture frames on my desk. He picked on up and studied it.
"Is this your sister?" He asked.
I turned to him as he flipped the picture frame towards me. It was a picture of me, Malia, and King. We were on a trip to Hawaii, I remember the day as if it were yesterday. I snapped back to reality. "Yea, that's my sister. Her name is Malia," I replied before turning back to my bag.
"She's cute," Luke said.
Minutes later I finished packing my bag. Luke looked at me and I nodded, telling him I was ready. I left my room and closed the door behind me. I began to walk before I stopped in front of Malia's bedroom door.
"Can I talk to my sister real quick?" I asked Luke. "Please."
I dropped my bag and tenaciously opened the door. Her room was lit by a small Avengers nightlight on the far end of the wall. King was sleeping on the edge of her bed. He lifted his head and slightly wagged his tail at the sight of me.
"Hey King," I whispered as I knelt in front of him. I scratched his head. "I need you to do something for me, boy. I need you to protect Malia at all costs, okay? Please, keep her safe." I told King as if he understood. "Keep her happy."
"Hazel?" Malia awoke. She rubbed her eyes as King licked her face. "Hazel, what are you doing?"
"Hi baby," I smiled. "Listen, I need to go on a trip. Don't tell mom and dad anything about this conversation, you hear?"
"Where are you going?" Malia asked.
"I'm going on a small getaway," I replied.
Suddenly King gave off a low growl. I turned and saw Luke in the doorway. Malia quickly calmed King.
"Who's that?" Malia asked.
"That's my..boyfriend," I replied. "His name is Luke."
Luke awkwardly smiled and waved. Malia giggled and waved back, "He's tall."
"He is, but I gotta go now. Remember, anytime you need anything just call me and I will run from the edge of the world, back for you," I booped her nose with my index finger. I hugged her tightly, "I love you so much Malia, okay. Don't forget that."
"I love you too Hazey."
I tucked her into bed and kissed her forehead. King got comfy at her side as well. I closed the door behind me and tried not to let tears fall as I quickly blinked them away.
"You okay?" Luke asked.
I nodded, "Let's go."
We walked down the stairs and out into the cold night. I breathed in my last smell of home. I don't know if I will ever come back. I don't know if I will die or survive on this journey, but what I do know, is that I won't be seeing this place for a long time.
How did I ever end up here?
|| Luke ||
Hazel was upstairs sleeping in my room since we didn't have a spare room. I was in the hidden basement where we held the graves. It was like a series of catacombs to get here. I stood next to Matthew's grave.
Matt was a great guy. He always tried to make everyone feel wanted and make everyone have a place to call home I looked around the room. Johnny was buried two spaces away from Matty. My own grave on the other hand was right next to Matty's. We each dug our own grave when we entered the mafia and were bond as brothers. I literally dug my own grave.
I sighed as I knelt next to the hole. I picked up a handful of dry dirt and threw it in the grave. If I do die on this trip, let me die a glorious death. I stood up and left the dusty room. Calum stopped me in my tracks. He had gauze wrapped around his bicep.
"How're you feeling?" I asked.
"Still hurts like hell, but I'll recover. What are you doing down here?"
"Just needed to do some thinking," I replied.
He cracked a smile, "And of course you had to do that amongst the dead instead of the living."
"Calum, if I don't make it back," I started.
"Don't say that, mate," Calum stopped me. "You aren't on the brink of death at the moment and I won't let you kick the bucket."
"But just in case," I continued. "If I die, I want you, Michael and Ashton to split the leadership between the three of you. You'll make great igetes."
Calum nodded. We left the burial ground and made our way through the catacombs.
I made sure my spare gun was in the glove compartment of the car. Hazel's bag was in the back. She was saying her good bye to Aurora, a friend of hers and Paul's girlfriend. She was a petite girl who was very small, height wise. I stuffed my hands in the pockets of my leather jacket as I walked around the side of the car.
Michael handed me a thick wad of cash. I tucked it away on the inside of my jacket. I felt the metal pressing against the small of my back, between my shirt and jacket. I knew the safety was on and I also knew it was loaded with eight bullets.
My tongue fiddled with my lip ring, a bad habit I managed to pick up. Ashton stood next to me, arms crossed. His black sunglasses shaded his eyes from the burning sun. Calum and Michael occasionally passed a joint between them as they stood around.
"Where should we meet you?" Michael asked blowing the vapor out of his mouth.
"Nevada," I replied. "We'll be in Vegas, lay low for a day or two, then get back on the road. Make our way to New Mexico, maybe stay with Hunter and Nike, from there we go to Texas to the hideout. Later we go to Chicago and from there, maybe make a few stops before we reach New York,"
Ashton nodded, "So Sin City it is, we'll meet you there."
"Bye Aurora," Hazel finally said.
"Goodbye Hazel, take care of yourself," She replied. "And you!" She pointed at me and walked towards me until she was inches from my chest. "You better take good care of her."
"Will do ma'am," I replied.
"Good," She said.
I tried not to laugh because she was so small and tried to act tough. I gave Michael and rough pat on the shoulder. "I'll see you guys then. And don't use up all the weed. Especially you Calum, stop snorting cocaine or else you'll get a nose bleed."
Calum cracked a smile. I left them and got into the truck. Hazel was already inside. Her hands on her lap as she looked down. I started the engine and drove away towards the city. My longest journey began.
"You don't mind me playing music right?" I asked breaking the eerie silence that had crept upon us the last ten minutes.
"No, music is fine," She replied.
I nodded and grabbed the aux chord before pulling my phone out. Traffic was slow and we were like sitting ducks in this heat. I plugged the chord into my phone and went to my playlist before putting it on shuffle. Nirvana's 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' was the first song.
"Do you like Nirvana?" I asked.
"Never really listened to them," She admitted.
"Well, what type of music do you like?" My eyes on the road as we slowly made our way through the traffic jam.
"I don't really have a genre, if I like it, I'll listen to it," She explained. "How about you?"
"Grunge, rock, lots of band in the late 90's and early 2000's are really good too," I replied.
She nodded and looked out the window. My eyes drifted to her occasionally, but I adverted my eyes before she could notice. I didn't bother to awkward small talk as the silence took us under once again.
|| Hazel ||
We were now out of Los Angeles' city lights. Luke drove through the lonely desert road towards Sin City. The darkness consumed us the only thing around was dirt, cactus, tumbleweed and rocks.
"Can I ask you something?" I told Luke.
"What is it?" He asked.
"Why were you at the warehouse? Did you know I was getting kidnapped?"
I saw Luke's grip tighten on the steering wheel. He took a deep breath, "Yes and no." I frowned at his very thin explanation. "You see," he continues. "I got told that Thomas was going to kidnap someone, a girl. Didn't know who it was and didn't know when. I went to the warehouse because I wanted vengeance for what Thomas did."
"What dd he do?" I asked.
"He killed Johnny."
I decided to not question it anymore. I didn't want to push it and have him pissed off. My eyes left his hands and I looked back onto the road. My phone began to vibrate. I looked at the screen and saw it was my mom calling. I ignored it but then my father started calling as well. I finally put my phone on silent.
"Parents?" Luke asked, his accent thick. I still was trying to figure out where he was from by his accent but I myself was clueless.
"Yea," I replied. "Where are you from?" I changed the subject.
"Australia. Sydney, actually," He replied. Australian.
"Why'd you move?" I asked.
"Because everything is better in America, right?" I could hear the sarcasm in his voice. "It was crap when I got here, I had no money and then I found Michael, Calum and Ashton and everything when downhill from there. Now I'm here. Leader of a Mafia and helping a girl who I know nothing about, escape from my one enemy."
A small nervous chuckle fell from my lips. We didn't speak again after that. Instead we both stared at the road. The lonely, dark road that seemed to lead to nowhere. About two miles later, we stopped at a small gasoline station. We both got out. Luke started to refill the tank with gas.
"I'm going to the bathroom," I said.
He nodded. I made my way towards the store and opened the door. The bells that hung by the door chimed when I opened it. The store was cool compared to the warm weather outside. I saw a sign that said 'restrooms' hanging from the ceiling and walked towards the white doors.
I locked the door behind me and went to the sink. I stared at myself in the mirror. My hair was messy and my face was heating up. I splashed cold water on my face to hopefully cool me down. Moments later I exited the bathroom and scanned the aisles for snacks. I looked over the short aisles and out the window where Luke was leaning against the truck. Hands stuffed in his leather jacket as he looked at the store. Probably searching for any threats. We met eyes but I quickly went back to my snack search.
I moved to the refrigerator where I grabbed two water bottles, soda and a few other drinks. I went to the register where the lady was standing behind the counter. Looking tired. She scanned the items while she popped her watermelon smelling gum. I gave her the money and in return she gave me my change. I lifted the brown paper bag and left the store.
I walked towards Luke, he took the bag from me, like a true gentleman. I found myself blushing but quickly snapped out of it. He opened the door for me and I got in before he closed it again. He got in himself.
"I'm not sure what you wanted so I just got you some water, soda, and chips," I replied.
"It's alright," he replied as I handed him the bottle of water, "Thanks."
"Your welcome," I replied and smiled lightly.
He started the engine once again and drove on the lonely road. Slowly the light from the gasoline station got farther and farther away. Final stop: Las Vegas.