Marked. Part I: The missing Link

By: J.M.Sevilla

“Positive.” What he's capable of and the dark evil look his eyes posses may frighten me, but I know without a doubt he would never harm me.

“'Kay, and you promise to call me tomorrow?”

“I promise.”

We walk them to Stevie's Jeep, and once Naomi drives off we go to his truck. He opens the passenger door for me and helps me up. I try not to think about how big and strong his hands feel on my waist.

We drive in silence while I stare at him, studying his face and the scar that's facing me. I reach my arm out and run my thumb across the smallest one along his temple. His body stiffens against my touch.

“Thanks for saving me.”

His hands tighten around the steering wheel, “You want to tell me how the hell it got that far?” His tone is soft and I don't take offense to his question.

“I needed air and went out the exit into the ally. Three of them approached me and I tried opening the door but it was locked...” I wrap my arms around myself like a blanket.

“Never mind. Don't tell me. It will only make me want to hunt them down and rip their fucking heads off.”

“Good. I don't really want to talk about it,” a light sob escapes the back of my throat and I feel like a wuss. It's not like anything happened. It never got that far. A tear runs down my cheek and I brush it away before he can see. I want to lift my legs up and wrap my arms around myself but I don't want him to see how much tonight has affected me, it's pitiful. I settle for twirling my hair and chewing on my lip, which hurts...a lot. It feels huge in my mouth and I can feel the broken skin with my tongue.

“Don't do that,” Jay reaches over and tugs on my chin, releasing my bottom lip. “It's swollen and bruised. You'll make it worse.”

I'm disappointed when we arrive home. I like being in the safety of his truck and the soothing roll of a moving vehicle.

“Do you think we can drive around for awhile?” I can't believe what a child I'm being.

He doesn't respond, just flips the truck around and keeps driving.

“I know you wanted to drive me home because you didn't want me to tell my friends how easily you whooped those guys asses. Why is that?”

His hands twist around the steering wheel and I can tell he's thinking how he wants to explain it to me, “I'm afraid if they know what I did they will tell others, and word will get around about what I can do. I try very hard to go unnoticed.”

I let out a small laugh from his comment, “You have seen yourself, right?”

He lets out a laugh as well, “Touchè.”

“I don't mean just these,” I say, running the pad of my thumb over the scar on his temple. “You're huge and your eyes are scary at times; it's impossible to forget them.”

“Do I scare you?” His voice is barely above a whisper.

“A little. The first time I saw you and after you fought those men I was. It's the color your eyes take on. Like you're soulless.”

A sharp intake of breath cuts through the air and I feel guilty for being so honest. The man just saved my life, or at least prevented me from becoming a shell of a human being, and I insult him.

“I'm sorry. I didn't mean for it to come out so harsh.”

“Don't ever apologize for being honest with me.”

We drive around in silence for another thirty minutes and I don't protest when he pulls into his driveway.

He tells me to wait and comes around to help me out. Once my feet are safely planted on the ground his eyebrows knit together and his hand strokes the cheek that was slapped.

“You should ice this when you get home.” For how big and rough his hands are, they sure feel gentle and soft against my skin. I close my eyes, leaning into his palm. The second my lids shut, tonight’s events play out and I feel panic again. I step back against the truck in fear, hitting my head against the door.

Jay backs away from me, “I'm sorry. I shouldn't have touched you.”

“No, it wasn't you. I liked that. It was when I closed my eyes,” I look at the ground in front of my feet. “I could see everything, all playing out like a movie.” A tear drops, and Jay's hand is back on my cheek to wipe it away. “I'm sorry, I'm being silly.”

He lifts my chin up to look at him, “Stop telling me you're sorry, and you’re not being silly. I only caught the tail end of what happened in that car, and you have every right to be upset.” He steps back and the empty space between us feels miles long. His hand comes out for me to take, “Let me walk you home.” He smirks, “It's a long journey.”

I crack a smile but shake my head no and his face falls, “I feel stupid but I'm afraid to go home now and go to sleep. I'm afraid I'll have nightmares or my mind won't stop reliving it all.”

“Huh,” he scratches the scruff on his face. “I might have some sleeping pills in my bathroom?”


“I'll be right back.”

Jay heads inside and I follow. No way am I waiting out here alone.

He looks over his shoulder as he unlocks his door and I'm relieved when he doesn't protest me following him inside. The house is dark when we enter but he doesn't turn on any lights as he heads down the hall. It's hard to make out the living room, but I can tell he has a couch and I lay myself down on it, curling up and wrapping my arms around a pillow cushion. I feel exhausted and I want to close my eyes, but I'm still afraid. I hear him come back in and stand over me, but I don't look up at him or make any indication that I plan on moving, because I don't. I feel safe here.