Regression to the mean - Part 2
“Why are we here?” I asked him as we both get off his bike.
“Come.” he happily says as he grasps my hand and pulls me towards the woods.
“How much more do we need to walk? I’m tired.” I complained, breathing heavily from our walk through the woods. It has been five minutes we’ve been walking and this idiot won’t say me where we are going.
“We’re here.” he says as he helps me over some dead mosses and wood, careful not to let me fall over anything. He pushes me forward and into a clearance. As I walk forward, I gasp at the sight in front of me. We were standing on a cliff, overlooking the sea. The cliff makes a U shape and directly below us is water.
“How did you know about this place?” I asked him, taking in the beauty around me.
“We’ve actually been here before.” he said and I looked at him, confused.
“Do you remember I took you to my new house the other day?” he asked and I nodded, clearly remembering that day when we both opened up to each other.
“It’s just opposite to this place.” he said and that’s when I realized the familiar surroundings. Oh god, how could I forget such a beautiful and memorable place!
“So what are we gonna do here?” I asked him and he just gave me a mischievous smirk. He unbuttoned his shirt and shrugged it off, flinging it carelessly to the ground. Of course, I’d seen him shirtless numerous times, but each time feels like the first. Butterflies erupt in my belly whenever I see him shirtless. He then reached for his belt and I widened my eyes.
“What the hell are you doing?” I shrieked in horror. He ignored me and continued to undress, leaving him only on his boxers. Just don’t look anywhere other than his face!
“Remove your dress.” he said and I choked on my saliva.
“Nice try, Watson.” I rolled my eyes.
“C’mon, Lia. You don’t want to make your clothes wet.” he said.
“What are we about to do?”
“Living a little.” he said and I widened my eyes.
“Why? It would be fun!” he said and I glared at him.
“Jumping from the cliff isn’t fun. It’s suicidal!” I said and crossed my arms over my chest.
“I’ve done this before and I’m still alive.” he said.
“Ah, that’s because you’re not a human.”
“Or is it because you’re scared?” he asked smirking. Hell yeah! But I won’t let that out to him.
“No, I’m not.” I narrowed my eyes at him.
“Then be a bad girl for once.” he said and I felt hot with anger. I toed off my shoes and took my pants off, leaving me in a lacy black underwear. I heard him take a sharp intake of breath and I looked straight into his eyes. His jaw was clenched and his eyes turned a dark shade of blue.I decided not to remove my shirt as I noticed how hard Logan was trying to not look at my legs for a long time.
“Is my hotness making you uncomfortable, babe?” I mimicked his words.
He mumbled something under his breath before clearing his throat. He walks to the edge of the cliff and he turned his head back to look at me, with a daredevil grin on his lips and eyes gleamed with cockiness as they watched me.
“Next is you.” he said.
“Wait for me! don’t –” he jumps before I can finish.
“Logan” I yell, my heart stopped beating all of a sudden. When he resurfaced, I let out a sigh of relief.
“You idiot. You could’ve died.” I shouted at him and he grinned at me.
“You gotta try this.” he said and my hands started to shake violently.
“I don’t know how to swim.”
“I’ll catch you. Just jump.” he said and I bit my lips in thought. Should I jump? What if I hit my head on some rock? He told he will catch me! But what if he lost his grip? Then I’ll drown and die. Oh god.
“Can you just stop thinking about the terrible things that you think would happen in that little brain of yours and jump.” he shouted from down.
“Is there any shark in there?” I asked, biting my nails. I hate that thing with my entire soul.
“No shark. Only Piranhas.” he shouted and my heart dropped. I hate that thing also! He let out a chuckle seeing my face.
“Nothing is there in here. Just jump!” he shouted impatiently. Fine, I got this!
I took a deep breath and mustered up all my courage and jumped off the cliff with my eyes closed. I could feel the cold wind that slaps my face and body, but I didn’t dare to open my eyes. Then my body ached when it hit the freezing water and I felt myself being pulled down and down. Panicking, I gasped for air when someone pulled me up almost immediately.
“I got you. Just breathe.” Logan voice said as I coughed water.
“That…T-That was amazing.” I said out of breath and he grinned at me.
“I told you so. Wanna try it again?” he asked and I nodded eagerly.
We stay on the cliff for a few more hours, playing, teasing and stealing some kisses. We decided to head back when Scarlet called me to come over as she needed some help to dress up. Even though Logan was not happy to hear that, he didn’t say anything. Instead, he offered to drop me there.
“Thank you so much for today. I loved it.” I said as we both stepped out of his car.
“Me too.” he said and took my hands in his before bringing them to his lips, kissing it.
“Okay, Bye.” I said and took a step back, biting my lips. He nodded his head and put his hands in his pocket.
“Wait” he called out as I was about to leave and I turned around to look at him, with my eyebrows raised.
“I-Uh…” he suddenly pulled me onto him and pressed down his soft lips to my own. I freeze up, not sure what’s going on. Logan trails his one hand from my arms and presses it into the middle of my back, demanding me to kiss him back. I kissed him back finally and I interlocked my fingers through his soft hair, tugging it softly and he groaned in approval.
“Lia..” he whispered as he let go of me. I take in a deep breath and look at his eyes.
“Yes?” I breathed out.
“Goodnight.” he said and pecked my lips and I let out a small laugh.
“Goodnight.” I said and turned around, walking into the Scarlet’s and Patrick’s house, smiling like a maniac.
“Oh God, Patrick will hate me now. I don’t know what to wear.” Scarlet flustered, pacing around the room, biting her nails.
“You’re such a drama queen. He loves you, so stop overreacting.” I rolled my eyes.
“It’s a family dinner Karrie. Everyone will be there. I want to look good. Oh god, what will I do?” Her arms flung in the air. It looked as if she was near to having a panic attack and I let out a small laugh.
“Why are you laughing? Am not telling a joke.” she shouted at me and I laughed a little bit more.
“Oh, Scar. First, take a deep breath… Relax.” I said and stood in front of her.
“Relax? I can’t even find a dress! Every dress I’ve is so old-fashioned.” She said and kicked a dress which was near to her feet. Poor dress! Dresses were piled everywhere and the floor was a mess. If she says her trending dresses are old fashioned, I wonder what she will say about my dresses!
“Pick something for me, please” she said and pulled me into her wardrobe. Just then Patrick came into the room and flung himself on to the bed.
“Patrick. I said not to come here until I finish dressing up.” Scarlet shouted at him and he raised a brow at her.
“You said that four hours back. How much time do you take to dress up?” he asked, rolling his eyes. I bit a laugh when I noticed how angry Scarlet was. It was like she would kill him any second!
“OUT, Now.” she said, pointing towards the door.
“Nope.” he shook his head popping the ‘p’.
“I need to dress up, Pat.” she whined.
“Then make it fast. It’s not like I haven’t seen you naked before, right?” he winked at her and she flushed red.
“Guys, I’m right here. I didn’t disappear.” I mumbled and Patrick rolled his eyes.
“GET OUT.” Scarlet shouted and pushed him out of the room.
“Okay Okay, I’ll go. But just remember that you won’t be able to resist me, Toni-” she slammed the door in his face and I laughed loudly.
“Stop laughing and pick a dress for me.” she mumbled, still blushing.
“Okay ma’am.” I said. I went through the remaining clothes hung up in the wardrobe and tried to come up with a suitable outfit. I picked out a black sleeveless gown and handed it to her.
“Take this.” I said and she shook her head.
“No. I wore this for our first date,” she said.
“So what? His family didn’t see you in this outfit, right?” I tried to reason with her.
“No means no.” I huffed and turned towards the wardrobe. Then to the extreme side of the wardrobe, I noticed a dress. I picked it up and we both gasped loudly.
“Perfect dress.” I squealed and ran my fingers on the fabric. It was a champagne lace knee-length gown with a V-neck pattern.
“Yes. This is perfect.” Scarlet jumped up and down, clapping her hands excitedly.
“You’re a life saviour.” She said and kissed my cheeks.
“I know.” I smiled triumphantly and she rolled her eyes, still smiling. She walked into the bathroom and got changed. When she came out, I nodded in approval.
“Now makeup time.” I said and started my job. After half an hour, everything was set. Scarlet really looked so beautiful and I’m sure Patrick’s family will like her within a second. She’s that beautiful inside and outside. Patrick was stunned when he saw her. He stared at her with so much of love and affection. Now I doubt whether he could keep his hands to himself tonight.
It was a cold night, the winter so bitter and chilling. The wind blew against my arms, forming goosebumps. I rubbed my hands against my arms, trying my best to warm myself up. I now regret the idea of declining the offer for the ride from Patrick. I thought it would be nice to walk in this weather. But hell, I was wrong. I could’ve called an Uber. But the apartment is just few blocks away from here. If I take a shortcut, I can reach home as fast as I can. So I took a right turn and started to walk through a silent pathway which no one uses frequently.
Suddenly I heard footsteps behind me and I feel like I’m not alone. I whip around, my heart beating a million times a minute. I notice a man following me from behind.
“Oh, shit.” I curse, turning around. I started to walk faster and footsteps from behind became louder and louder, indicating that the person was very close to me.
“Who are you? What do you want?” I asked bravely, stopping in my tracks and turning around.
“What a great surprise to see you here, Miss Kingston.” a familiar voice said. My heart stopped beating and the world around me stopped. That sound…..it was very familiar to me. A voice which I would never forget.
“Now it’s time to tell goodbye to them.” he said and the world around me stopped.
“No, please, no. Why are you doing this to us?” I yelled.
“Sorry sweetheart. My boss’s wish is my command.” And with that, he shot my mom in her head.
That same deep voice and green eyes. It was him. The man in front of me was the same person who killed my parents. Oh god! Why is he here? Did he come to New York to find me? But no one knows I’m in New York!
Take a deep breath Karrie!
“H-How did y-you find me?” I stammered and clutched my dress tightly, nervousness filling all over my body.
“Oh, darling. You are in my place. I stay in New York.” he said and all the colors drained from my face.
“Isn’t it amazing how the fate works? I’ve been searching for you everywhere and finally here you’re, right in front of my face.” He chuckled darkly and took a dangerous step towards me as I took one back. I looked around the place, in hope of finding someone for help. Unfortunately, there isn’t anyone on the street except us. I shouldn’t have taken the shortcut.
“P-Please, leave m-me alone. W-Why do y-you want to k-kill me?” I asked, tears rolling down my cheeks nonstop.
“My wife is dead because of you.” he hissed and I stiffened. What?
“N-No. You’re wrong. I didn’t kill you-“
“How dare you run away from me? He killed my wife because you escaped. Now my children don’t have a mother. I WILL FUCKING KILL YOU.” He shouted, making me flinch.
“P-Please n-no,” I said and turned around, running as fast I physically could, pushing my legs as fast as they could go. But luck wasn’t with me today. His cold hand covered my mouth and snaked his strong arm around my waist. My eyes widened and I thrash as wildly as I could, letting out muffled shouts for help. He pinned me against a wall and stared at me with cold murderous eyes.
“You bitch. How dare you run away from me, again!” he said and slapped me hard on my cheeks. I screamed loudly and closed my eyes tightly, trying to ease the pain.
“LOOK AT ME.” he screamed at me. I shook my head and kept my eyes still closed, hoping he would disappear as soon as I open my eyes.
“I said LOOK AT ME.” with that he slapped me again on my cheeks. I whimpered and opened my eyes. My teary eyes met with his cold green eyes.
“P-Please.” I begged. He gripped my neck tightly squeezing the air out of me. No, this can’t be happening. I can’t die. I want to live. I’ve some more things to do before I die.
With that thought in my mind, I rammed my knee onto his lower region. He screamed in pain and immediately let go of me. I took this opportunity and took a step away from him.
“STOP. Don’t you dare run again.“ he tried to catch me, but I was faster than him. Instead, he got a hold of my shirt from behind and tore it off. I ran until my legs could carry and looked behind me, making sure he wasn’t following me before I stopped running. I took deep breaths and wiped my tears. I looked around the place and noticed I was on some street with few people around. I tried to cover my exposed back with my hands and ran into some half-constructed building. He tore my dress, now I can’t walk through the street. At first, I thought of calling Scarlet. But she will be probably with Patrick’s family now and I don’t want to disturb her. Then I decided to call Logan. Only he can help me right now.
“Hey princess, what’s up?” he said happily through the phone. Hearing his voice made me cry harder. I covered my mouth with my free hand, preventing my constant whimpers from escaping out of my mouth.
“Lia? Are you there?” he asked, his voice turning serious. I counted to ten trying my best to control my heartbeat.
“I’m fine.” I choked out. Out of blue, a log of wood came crashing down onto the floor a few feet away from me, making me scream loudly. I looked around for any danger and let out a sigh of relief when I realized no one was around me. From where the hell did that log come from?
“Lia! What the hell is happening there? Where are you?” Logan practically screamed into the phone.
“L-Logan….help me…I need you.” I sobbed, not being able to control anymore. I need him. I want him by my side. I want him to hug me and say it’s fine . I want only him. I want my Logan.
“Lia, listen to me. Alright?” he said calmly and I nodded my head before realizing he couldn’t see me.
“Yes” I whispered, as the tears roll down my cheeks.
“Take a deep breath.” He said and I did as he told.
“Okay, now tell me where you are. Are you in your apartment?” He asked softly.
“N-No. I’m in some building”. I could imagine him frowning by now.
“Tell me some landmark. Any shop near you” he said and I looked around the place. I noticed a building from a distance.
“I can see a motel in front of me”
“What is its name?” he asked.
“Orchid motel,” I said as I read the words which were highlighted in red.
“Alright. I’ll be there in five.” he said and I could hear the engine of a car being started, which made me relax a bit, knowing that he would be here any minute. I wrapped my arms around me and stepped between the steel rods, shielding myself from being seen.
After five minutes, I heard footsteps coming from a distance. I stiffened and stopped breathing all of a sudden. I shuddered at the thought of that psycho’s hand around my body, again.
“LIA, WHERE ARE YOU?” I heard Logan’s voice and I let out a sigh of relief. I stepped out of my shelter and saw him standing a few meters away from me, looking around the building… searching for me.
“L-Logan,” I said and he turned around, his blue eyes meeting my brown orbs. He took a cautious step towards me and I took a step back.
“P-Please don’t come here.” I hiccuped and tried to cover my back with my hands. As much as I wanted to run to him and hug him for comfort I couldn’t do it. I don’t want him to see me like this. I don’t want him to see how broken and vulnerable I’m right now.
“Baby, please. I won’t hurt you.” he said, his voice breaking slightly.
“I know you won’t. I..“I couldn’t find any proper words to describe my condition right now.
“What is it?” he asked, cautiously.
“I-I’m not decent,” I said and he stiffened his fist clenching.
“What do you mean?”
“H-He tore m-my dress.” I slide the back of my hand against my eyes but there’s no point as fresh tears replace them.
“Oh baby, come here.” he walked toward me in a speed of light and pulled me towards him. I don’t restrain myself, as I practically launch into his warm body, wrapping my arms around his neck and nuzzling into him. In a careful manner, Logan wraps his arms around me, pulling me further into him and lays his head down on mine. I cried into his shoulder until I calm down and he whispered soothing words into my ears. A few minutes we stay like that in silence until we pull back from the hug.
He pulls a handkerchief out of his pant pocket and grabbed my face. I flinched from pain as soon as his fingers made contact with my face and he froze.
“What happened?” he asked.
“I-It h-hurts.” I whispered. He examined my face carefully.
“Did he slap you?” he asked firmly and I nodded. He clenched his jaw and with the delicate touch, he holds my face again and tries his best to wipe my tears away gently. I can feel the anger radiating off from his body.
He removed his leather jacket and wrapped it around me. He then lifted me in his arms and walked away from the building, towards his car. I laid my head on his strong yet comfortable chest, listening to his heartbeat, which comforted me.
He settled me down on the passenger seat carefully and buckled my seat belt. He pressed a soft kiss on my forehead before closing the door. He walked to his side and started the engine within seconds.
“Who is he?” he asked, breaking the silence. I notice he was clenching the steering wheel so tightly that his knuckles turned white.
“The same person who killed my parents. He found me, Logan.”
A/N - Yep! He found her!! Now what is she gonna do? Again run away from New York or else hide herself in her apartment?
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