Being Amber

Without any memory of her past and not knowing why people react to her as they do, Amber has to learn to survive in the hard underworld of the City, among gangs and the unwanted citizens.
Her appearent resemblance with Ben's dead girlfriend, places her in the middle of a war that easily can cost her and others their lives.
In her quest to find her identity Amber has to learn to tell friend from foe, see behind the lies and decide if Ben's past matters at all.
When Ben asks Tom to train Amber he gets pulled into the war happening around him, far more than he wants to be.
Tom's alliance with Ben hangs in a thin tread when he not only falls in love with Amber but also starts a relationship with Kattie, who already has a boyfriend in Clay, Ben's second in command.
Will Amber ever find out who she really is ?
And how Will they get through the war ?

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3. Meeting Ben and getting a name

 

 *Amber/Sarah*

 To wake up in pain wasn't new for me. That much I knew. But to wake up and feel this level of confusion, I was sure that was new. I couldn't remember what had happened to make my entire body hurt like this. Had I been in an accident ? Or had I been in a bad fight ? Why was the pain so well known when I didn't know were it came from ?

 What had happened ?

 I didn't dare move and I couldn't pull myself together to open my eyes. I tried collecting my thoughts. I knew I was in pain and that it wasn't normal. But what else did I know ?

 Who am I ?

 I opened my eyes and stared up at a grey ceiling, there were several holes in it and in the corners there were isolation material sticking out.

 Where were I ?

 The walls had without a doubt been white once. And before that they had been rose coloured. It had been a long time since anyone had fixed up this room and nobody seemed to care that the tapestry was gone and exposed the last one, and the one before that. Some places you could see the bare wall and other places was open all the way into the isolation.

 The window was covered by a piece of plastic and even though it was dirty I could see the glass under it was broken.

 Furniture was sparse and old. But the big bed I was laying in was comfortable enough and the dark blue linen was clean. But beside that there was only a small dresser next to the door and a chair next to the bed were someone had left a glass of water.

 I tried sitting up, but the pain was unbearable so I gave up pretty fast. I felt a knot grow in my chest and a lump form in my throat. I couldn't hold back the tears and the sobs escaping me.

 There was three knocks on the door, before a young man stepped inside. Or man was maybe not the right word. Even though his body looked muscular and strong his face looked very young. He had a thick dark blonde hair, combed back with wax and he wore loose dark pants with a lot of pockets and a thight white T-shirt that revealed he had a tattoo on his right arm of a S impaled on a sword.

 "Good to see you awake". He said as he stepped inside. There was nothing threatening about him. But my instinct still made me avoid eye contact. I pulled away from him. My insecurity made him stop, looking worried.

 "Do you need anything ? Water ? Food ? Pain killers ?" I didn't answer him, my entire body was shaking and I couldn't control it. Who was he ? Who am I and how had I ended up here in a bed in his care ?

 "It's okay". He seemed a bit confused and even more worried. He turned towards the door calling for someone else. Shortly after a young woman come in. Her long black hair was braided a hung over one shoulder. She had a pretty face and piercing green eyes. She only wore a light make-up and very tight jeans. Her top showed of a bit of bare skin on her stomach. She had the same tattoo as the young man. 

 "She is scared shitless". He explained her as he moved towards the door.

 "It's okay". She slowly moved to sit on the edge of my bed. "KC could you run grab some fresh water, some bread and some pain killers " she didn't look at him but he still nodded before hurrying out the door. "I am Kattie". She smiled at me.

 The knot in my chest loosened a bit. She scared me less than the young man, but the whole situation was still very scary. Not knowing anything scared me.

 "How are you feeling ?" She asked.

 I was thinking a long time before answering. Uncertain how my voice were even working. "Someone hurt me". I whispered and I was surprised to hear my owm voice. It sounded so fragile compared to her. You could easily hear the fear in it.

 "You are safe here". She told me. Her eyes tried catching mine, but it felt wrong to look her in the eye, like I had been taught not to. "No one will harm you here".

 "I.. I don't know..". The words got stuck in my throat.

 "What don't you know ?" Kattie's voice was still calm and I jumped slightly when she put a hand on my arm. "What happened to you ?"

 "Who am I ?!" It was only a whisper. A low hoarse whisper and I was impressed she heard me, I could hardly hear it myself. Talking made my throat hurt again.

 "You don't know at all ?" A worried line appeared above her left eyebrow and she looked even more worried than she had done before. "We found you in the woods". She explained in a low voice. "We have cared for your wounds to our best abilities". I didn't remember the woods, I didn't remember how I got hurt.

 The boy, KC, came back with a bottle of water and a piece of bread. He put it down on the chair next to the bed. Then he pulled out a syringe and handed it to Kattie. The liquid inside was clear and the needle made me shudder.

 "I think we need something stronger". Kattie said putting the syringe down on the chair. "The damage goes a lot deeper than we first thought".

 "Should I go get Tom ?" The young man said and looked at me worriedly. "Or Ben ?" He said a bit more wavering.

 "Has he come home ?" Kattie didn't look at KC when she asked him, she was starring at the wall. Was she angry ? She somehow seemed angry.

 "Yeah he tumbled into bed a couple of hours ago. Not looking good". KC admitted before leaving the room. Kattie closed her eyes and hung her head.

 "I am sorry if I am any bother". I mumbled. I didn't dare speak up loud.

 "It isn't your fault". Kattie answered without opening her eyes. "It has just been a very hard 24 hours". She tried sending me a comforting smile, but even I could see it was half-hearted. "Are you in pain ?" She asked more friendly, opening her eyes.

 "A bit". It was a big understatement. I was eyeing the needle on the chair.

 "I just need to go talk to Ben, okay ?" She gently put a hand on my arm. "I'll be back in a minute". She got of the bed and left me alone. I looked at the needle again, but pain or no pain, I didn't dare stick myself with it.

 Instead I reached for the bread. Breaking of small bites and eating it slowly. I was hungry, even if part of me didn't want to admit it.

 When Kattie walked back in she had another person with her. It was a man, still young but older than the others. Probably around thirty. He had black hair and a stray curl fell down on his forehead. He wore the same kind of pants as KC but his chest was bare. He also had the S tattoo on his arm along with a tattoo on the left side of his of his neck.

 I couldn't help stare at his upper body. He was slim and well muscled and he had a lot of scars, more than I could count. Something about him fascinated me. He had dark circles under his eyes. His gaze were unsteady, like he was very tired and he had a hard time focusing.

 Until his gaze fell on me.

 His eyes were a peculiar green/blue mix, but right now they changed into something darker.

 He didn't say anything before sitting down on the edge of my bed. Kattie kept her distance and had her arms crossed, while watching him guardedly. Was she scared of him ?

 I definitely didn't trust him.

 "My name is Ben". He said in a friendly but firm voice. "I am the leader of The Shadows and as long as you are here you are under my protection". I wanted to ask what The Shadows was. Where 'here' was. But I didn't dare say anything. I found him both intimidating and attractive. "Kattie says you have lost you memory". It wasn't a question.

 I nodded  and even though I knew it would hurt, I tried once more sitting up. He was quick to lean forward and support me. I stopped breathing when he touched me. But then the moment was gone and he withdrew.

 "I have to test some things before I give you the pain killers". He said softly. "I promise to be very gentle". He leaned forward placing his fingers on my temples. "Tell me if anything hurts or are sore".

 I had a really hard time concentrating. His fingers moved down the sides of my neck and around back. One place it sent a shock through my entire body, making me jump. It mad my hand fly up and hit his chest in reflex, and I couldn't help blushing as I removed my hand again. 

 "I had to test if your reactions were okay". He said apologetically and ignored my reaction. He pulled away from me and took a small flashlight from his pocket, pointing it towards my eyes. "You don't seem to have a concussion. I can't really find anything to explain the memory loss".

 "What about asking Tom or Kress ?" Kattie suggested.

"I will. I will". Ben said. He wasn't looking at her, his gaze still resting on me. Something about it had changed. It was a hungry gaze. Almost predatory. "But first we have to make sure our guest are comfortable". He pulled another syringe from one of his pockets. This one had a bluish liquid. "This will take away the pain and help you sleep". He explained as he put in the needle. "Do you have something you want us to call you until we know your real name ?"

 "Ben !" Katties voice was warning, but Ben ignored her.

"What do you think of the name Amber ?" Ben asked. I didn't have time to react before Kattie stalked out the room and I heard another door slam shut. "Ignore her". Ben said. His hand had grabbed mine as he slowly lowered the needle to my skin.

 "It is a nice name". What else could I say ? It wouldn't matter much to me what they called me. He smiled as he pressed down the piston. His smile was the last thing I saw before sleep claimed me.

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