13. • SCRUTINY •


I was somewhat relieved when Russell fell asleep, for his eyes never ceased to watch my every move. Making me timorous and jittery. However I was more concerned that he didn't eat anything at all.

I couldn't help but wonder if he had ate anytime during the whole ordeal. Timothy had eaten since he evidently knew how to operate a microwave oven. He was a light eater, and he drank Water more than Juice. What had surprised me was how his snacks were arranged in the fridge, and it was a mixture of choices including Fruit and Microwaveable Foods.

It was minutes past eight and I felt extremely exhausted. I however pushed myself to go into the Kitchen. I decided that I might whip up something quick but substantial for Russell to eat after whenever he woke up. He wasn't supposed to receive the Antibiotics on a hungry stomach, but the Man was just too stubborn. Hopefully he would have enough sense when he woke up, to know that he needed to eat.

I settled on a quick Chicken Roast, with some Pasta and steamed Vegetables. The kitchen was dancing with flavor by the time I turned off the last burner. I could hear the slow bubble of the Sauce die down gradually. There was some mellow, upbeat music playing in the background, and I idly swung my body to the buoyant track. Feeling a bit too hyped I spun around, my eyes widening. Russell stood there peering at me, focused and somewhat engrossed.

I jumped back in consternation, gasping loudly as the spoon I was using flew from my hands. Undulating noisily against the Floor.

Russell was standing there, with his hands stuffed down into his pockets. I grew heated with disconcertion and I could catch the slight twist of mirth on his lips.

My cheeks burned Crimson and I began sputtering, no audible words forming from my lips. The embarrassment left me wanting the ground to crack open, and swallow me whole. My knees had grown to sap, and my body shuddered all to visibly. 

              'H-how long were you s-standing there?' I inquired, in a squeaky voice. Slapping myself mentally, as the question didn't seem remotely relevant.

              'Long enough,' he commented, tilting his head. 'Smells good. Chicken?' He asked and I stared at him befuddled.

This Man was the definition of bipolar, for he was being a complete and utter asshole just three hours ago. Now at present he wanted to act cordial towards me all of a sudden.

This man was about to be the cusp of my entirety.

              'Yes, Chicken. I figured you'd want to eat after you woke up.' I paused and he nodded taking a seat at the counter.

Color had slowly started to flow back into his face, and by the way he was walking. I could tell he was feeling much more proficient. Which meant the pain Meds we're doing their magic. I smiled, pleased. Shell-shocked as his lips twisted up into a rather languid smile.

I dialed down my foolish hopes, focusing on the knowledge that he would at least feel much better, much sooner. Although I'd already decided to hang around a couple more hours, to keep an eye on him.

It wasn't my place to be so concerned, but I was apparently the only person around to do so. 'You know you don't have to watch over me like this.' He spoke, but I shrugged indifferently. Despite remembering what he had said that day before. He didn't want anybody changing the regular routine of his life. A fact I could understand, for I felt the same way most of my Adult life.

The day before had been an emotional roller coaster. For I was conflicted with feelings, and decisions that I couldn't just ignore. Albeit the words he said to Timothy, I still found myself coming back to the House. Just to ensure that he and Timothy were fine. 

            'You don't have a say in it Adams. And I'm doing this for Timothy.' I snorted heavily, rolling my eyes in annoyance.

             'Timothy,' He spoke quickly, flying upward from his chair and I hurried to his side holding him in place.

              'Hey hey hey calm down, Timothy is fine. He's up in his room sleeping.' I blustered haughtily, attempting to ease him.

I swiftly rested my hands atop his shoulders, and felt a fleeting tingle jolt up my arms. Our gazes met in that second, and we both lingered for many seconds. As if trying to decipher what just happened. It was obvious that he felt it too, but his gaze seemed troubled and malignant. After what seemed like forever, he seemed to calm down as he breathed heavily.

              'I-.' He started, but it was as if he couldn't finish, and I felt a wave of dolor fill me.

              'Look, just sit down and have something to eat. You'll feel less agitated after you eat and regain your strength.' Russell didn't answer, nor shake his head in response.

I was somewhat scared to say anything else, or to even try to touch him. So I simply just went along and made him a small plate. I set it before him, and he nodded a quick thanks. Within minutes he had finished eating.

I couldn't pull my eyes away from him, as his muscles glistened under the ceiling lights of his brightly lit Kitchen. I wanted so badly to comfort him, but I didn't know how to and I doubted that Russell would welcome it. For he already resented my existence, despite the help I'd offered to him. We both fell quiet, and I just stood there. Leaning against the counter, with my hands folded across my chest.

After what felt like a whole hour of silence, Russell surprised me by initiating a conversation. 'My partner,' he began, and I fixated my gaze on him.

             'What about your partner?' I asked, taking a seat atop a high stool, opposite from him.

             'We fixed a Safe the other day. Usually in my line of work, I just fix without asking questions.'

             'Was the Safe the reason this happened?' I asked curiously and he nodded a quick yes.

             'Business is kinda strenuous, and most unsaid fixes are usually from odd Clients. My Business Associate Chuck, stole a block of gold from the Safe and the owner came looking for it.' He finished and my eyes widened in stupor.

              'Oh wow,' I gasped lightly, understanding that I'd had the wrong idea about him all along. It was never his fault and I felt foolish for even believing that he was that type of individual.

I knew better, and didn't judge people on hand but his attitude had seemingly forced out negative thoughts about him. If only I could have seen past it, which was right at this second. There was no regrets in helping him, but I was faced with new things to worry about.

               'Did your mate, give it back?' I queried in concern, leaning forward on the stool.

               'Yes, I called him right away. He wussed out and ran off.' He muttered in a disappointed voice.

                'What about the owner?' I asked, trying not to sound too inquisitive. For I had a million questions that needed to be asked and answered.

                'Chasing after Chuck I guess. He's off my back. This was just a warning shot. Guess he knew that Chuck didn't have my back because he ran.' Russell grated out heavily, obvious hurt in his eyes. 'I'm partly worried that he might be back,' he grimaced and I nodded In agreement.

He felt deceived and I couldn't blame him, because I would have broken hell if it was me. Sure enough, I didn't know how powerful these guys, he spoke of were. But I was at least content knowing that he wasn't in any more trouble. One of the best news I've had all day, and it filled me with Relief. Also newfound respect was forged in my heart for Russell Adams, but he was still just the asshole that I was growing attracted to each day that passed.


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