“Say it, Iri.” He hisses through gritted teeth. I shake my head, looking down to avoid his piercing blue eyes that were penetrating my own.
“Say it.” He repeats, louder this time. I shake my head once more before his arms are suddenly pinning me up against the brick wall behind me and my body is arched to his. I gasp in shock and his finger-tips press softly into my waist; causing me to shiver under his touch.
“Say it, Iri.” He smirks slightly, eyes trailing over my face and finally landing on my lips. I draw in a deep breath and look up to see his eyes mirroring my own.
“I-” My words are cut off by his lips crashing to my own.


8. Chapter 8 - three in the morning


Cuddled up on the sofa, I check my phone for the thirteenth time in the last twenty minutes. It was quarter past three in the morning and I was beginning to really worry. Mae said she would be home by at least ten but I knew she would be longer.

But not this longer.

Sighing, I run my fingers through my hair and walk into the bathroom. Splashing cold water onto my face in an attempt to wake myself up, I grab my glasses from the coffee table and put them on. They were only for reading but my eyes always got worse when I was tired. Pulling my dark hair down and letting it fall in it's crumpled mess, I grab my phone and head out the door. The security guard behind the desk gives me a funny look as I pass him on my way out of the lobby and I begin to question what I was doing.

But what if she's in trouble?

I knew Harry was a nice boy and would do anything for her but what if... I shake my head and push my hands deeper into the pockets of my hoodie; the cold seeping in. I knew what bar she was at and it was only on the strip which was a ten minute walk away.

Approaching the building, I see the bright lights from the inside illuminating the windows. I could see the shadows of people dancing and moving inside and the pulse of a pop song is vibrating down the path. Shaking my head, I take a deep breath before stepping inside. Immediately, I don't like it. There were too many people. I had no chance of finding her in there. Stepping out, I let the doors swing shut and sit on the edge of the pavement outside. I pull out my phone and try her phone again; staring hopefully at the screen until it says 'Call Dropped'. I'd been trying to get through to her since midnight but no such luck.

"Urgh," I groan, throwing my face in to my hands.

"You alright, Cupcake?" The sound of a male's voice causes me to look up. Standing infront of me on the dark road was Brady; his grey eyes glinting in the moonlight. I ignore him in the hope that he'll go away. He'd been bothering me more and more lately; grabbing the chance to talk or help me whenever he could. It was cute but... creepy. And besides, I wasn't letting anyone in.

"What are you doing out here all alone at three in the morning?" He asks and I slant my eyes at him. His voice didn't sound slurred in any way and his eyes were normal and not dreary. I couldn't smell alcohol on him either; which I found more than strange.

"I could ask you the same thing," I state, looking over my shoulder for any sign of either Harry or Mae.

"Just enjoying a night out with some friends," He replies and I shake my head, noting that he’s obviously alone.

"Look, I'm just here to find Mae. Have you seen her?" He chuckles slightly, causing my agitation to grow even stronger.

"I have," He ponders for a moment, kicking at a stone infront of us.

"And I can get her for you, but it will come with a price, cupcake." He looks at me with a mischievous grin and fear pings inside of me. Suddenly, his arms wrap around my waist and he's lifting me over to the building. Pinning me against the side wall, his face nears mine dangerously.

"Brady, I just want to find Mae and-"

"Shh, cupcake. I'll find her for you." He whispers in my ear before biting on my ear-lobe. Coming from anyone else the gesture would have been romantic but from him... it just sparked more fear within me.

"Get off!" I scream, squirming under his tight grip.

"Cupcake, I'm not going to hurt you I just-"

"Hey!" A loud voice booms as I spot a figure nearing us over his shoulder.

"Let her go! Right now!" The figure demands and I strain to see who it is.

"Look, we're just playing around. Iris here was-" Brady's voice is cut off by the figure dragging him from me and pinning him to the floor where he goes to deliver a punch to his head. That's when I see the head of blonde hair and blue eyes in the faint street-light.

"Niall!" I shout, rushing over. What the hell? 

"Don't," I warn, placing my hand over his fist in an attempt to stop him. He meets my eyes and goes to say something but Brady's snarl cuts him off.

"Aw, is the little boy going to take orders from a girl?" I see the anger and irritation build up in Niall's face and the next thing I know he's punching him furiously again. I stand there for a while, just watching them in complete shock.

How the hell did this go from bad to worse in a matter of seconds?

Brady lifts Niall up the collar of his shirt and slams him against the wall with a sickening thud.

"Niall!" I scream, trying to wrench Brady's grip from his throat. Brady turns and kicks me in the stomach; sending me flying to the floor. I hear my name being called but I can't concentrate as my head comes into contact with the gravel.


--- --- --- ---


"Iri, Iri, wake up." The sound of Mae's voice drags me from my sleep and I crack open my eyes.

"Mae," I croak, shutting my eyes momentarily again as the harsh artificial light blinds me slightly.

"Oh my god, Iri. Thank god," She breathes and I focus on her face. Her hair was a static mess, make-up surrounding her eyes and her clothes were slightly damp. And there was a putrid scent in the apartment... like... rain, mould and rubbish combined into one.

"How are you feeling?" Harry's face appears over my own and I have to bite my tongue to stop myself from jumping. Gently, with help from him and Mae, I manage to sit up. Immediately my hand flies to a throbbing spot on the side of my temple.

"Ouch," I mumble and Mae shoots Harry a concerned look.

"Here," She says, handing me an ice-pack. I take it thankfully and brief a sigh of relief as it begins to numb the pain slightly.

"Where's Niall?" I ask suddenly almost afraid of the answer. Images of last night flash through my mind, but they were slightly fuzzy; like an un-tuned radio. I watch as Harry looks down at his hands and then looks back up at me but avoids making eye-contact.

"At the hospital,"

"What!" I exclaim and he shakes his head quickly at me.

"He's fine, Iri. Just needed some stitches and had a bit of a concussion but he's fine." Harry tries to argue, looking at Mae for help.

"He's fine, Iri. Seriously," She looks at me with compassion written over her face and I stand up, wobbling slightly.

"We're going," I say, marching my way over to the other side of the room and grabbing my keys from the kitchen side.

"We can't!" Mae exclaims, standing up at the same time Harry does.

"It's quarter past five in the morning, Iri!" She exclaims, attempting to stop me as I head over to the door.

"Fine. I'm going," I say and open the door, only to be followed by both of them.

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