Authors: Ellie R Hunter
I haven’t heard anything from Kyla all day. I took her breakfast in, I sat while she ate the lot and made sure she was okay when she puked the lot back up and the same when I took her lunch. Although her lunch has stayed down…Progress.
This is helping her, I know it is, but it’s hard. Locking her up like an animal goes against everything I kept her away from all these years. It’s the only way, I repeat to myself.
When Ricky came to me a couple of days ago and told me she wanted to die, I have spent my time sitting outside her door and listening to every movement she makes. Sally and I have had an arrangement that I thought has been working since she was born and she’s led a life a lot of people don’t get to experience. My absence has never been an issue for Kyla. We had our time together when I was in town and spoke a lot on the phone. Never once did she say anything about needing me more. Between the three of us we all knew where we stood and we stood very fucking well. All I keep thinking is something must have happened to her for her to turn to drugs? Maybe if she had known about my world, she would have come to me knowing I could help instead of sticking dirty needles in her arm and God knows where else.
“Pope, there’s someone down in the bar asking to see Kyla.”
Sparky is at the top of the stairs and looks concerned.
Who the hell could be here?
Pulling myself up to my feet, I tell the prospect not to move. I don’t have to really but it makes me feel better knowing if he does, I have ample amount of self-assurance that he clearly understood what I told him and disobeyed my order.
The bar is busy, I search for the newcomer and only spot him when Cas and Sparky step aside.
He doesn’t look like a junkie himself and my curiosity gets the better of me. I walk over to him and step a little too close for his comfort.
He tries stepping back opening the distance between us but I match his steps and he gives up. He doesn’t stand as tall as I and barely makes my shoulders, making it more intimidating when I scowl down at him.
“Who are you and why are you here?” I ask.
His eyes flick around the room pinning everyone now listening in and fall back to me.
“I’m here because this is where Sally said Kyla is. My name’s Dean and I want to see my girlfriend.”
I’ve never pictured what kind of guy my daughter would end up with but this slick haired, clean shaven, slime ball weasel standing in front of me shocks the shit out of me.
Sally didn’t mention any boyfriend to me. My patience wore thin days ago and I’ve got no time for this cunt standing before me.
“Do you know who I am?” I ask him, stepping back an inch.
He shakes his head and immediately looks wary of his surroundings, like he’s only just seeing what he’s walked into.
“I’m her dad so you’ll understand why I’m about to do this,” I grunt, swinging my fist into his jaw.
He falls back on his ass and holds his jaw.
“What the fuck was that for?” he asks.
“You come here telling me you’re her boyfriend yet you’ve let her jack up. Why haven’t you got her clean?”
He scrambles to his feet, flexing his jaw and shakes it off.
“I’ve tried countless times, every time I think she’s clean, she goes behind my back,” he argues.
“Look, Sally wouldn’t have told me where she was if I weren’t to be trusted,” he carries on.
I don’t give a fuck who Sally trusts. I make my own judgments and this guy claiming to be my daughter’s boyfriend screams sleaze to me.
“It’s funny, she hasn’t mentioned any boyfriend to us,” Sparky says, stepping beside me.
“Who are you?” Dean spits, losing his calm persona.
“Her family,” Sparky tells him, crossing his arms over his chest.
My chest tightens in a way I haven’t felt since Kyla’s birth and without a doubt I know my brothers have Kyla’s back as well as mine.
“She isn’t well at the moment, if she has your number, she can call you when she’s feelin’ better,” Cas offers, moving to my other side.
“I’m not leaving before I’ve seen her for myself. She’ll want to see me, trust me,” Dean says, adamantly.
Sparky laughs to my right and Cas grunts to my left.
“You have no trust here, this is my property and I say who can stay or leave. I’m telling you to leave before I have someone make you,” Cas threatens.
I don’t see Ricky walk in until he is launching himself directly at Dean and all hell breaks loose.
Ricky gets a good couple of punches in before Slade and Sparky are pulling him off and Cas steps in front of Dean to stop him from getting to Ricky. I myself stand and watch the scene around me, trying to figure what the fuck is going on now.
“What the fuck is that prick doing here?” He yells.
“You know this guy, Ricky?” Cas demands.
Ricky is angry, spitting flames of anger everywhere. None of us have ever seen him like this before.
I was right not to trust this Dean, I’m never fucking wrong.
“Yeah, I know him. Look under his shirt, you’ll see what I had to do to him when we were in lock up together.”
Dean doesn’t make a move when Cas rips his shirt up and shows us the scar on his abdomen.
The kid said he’s stint went smoothly, he didn’t mention nothing about having to shank someone.
All the brothers are now on alert and Dean looks sick with fear.
“He thought I would be his bitch boy, he wanted me doing shit for him and when I told him to fuck off, he thought he could threaten me with all sorts. The guy is a punk ass bitch,” Ricky tells us, calming down, “What’s he doing here?” he asks.
“Apparently, this is Kyla’s boyfriend and he’s here playing the doting lover wanting to see her,” Sparky fills him in.
I stare at Dean and he catches me watching him. He shrinks back and I can tell he wants to run.
“Don’t let him near her, he’s more like her dealer. That’s what he was in for,” Ricky adds.
“Is this true?” I ask Dean, not that I don’t trust my brother’s word.
I want to hear it from him.
“I never made her do anything she didn’t want to do, man,” he says, stepping back.
Before we know it, he’s running out of the door. I set off to run after him but Cas gets in my way.
“Let him go, Pope. Now he’s seen where she is he won’t be back.”
I don’t give a shit, whether he comes back or not, he is living on borrowed time. He peddled his shit to my girl and he is going to pay, and then had the audacity to turn up here pretending to care about her.
I join the rest of them at the bar and slap Ricky on the back.
His knuckles are red and swelling, “You got a couple of good hits in there, brother.”
“I would’ve got more in if Sparky and Slade hadn’t pulled me off,” he grunts, throwing back a vodka and grabbing for a beer.
“Tell me everything you know about him, everything.”
“He’s your common dealer, he’s no-one but thinks he’s someone. If he disappeared nobody would notice him gone.”
I nod taking in what he’s saying. The thought alone of my daughter being with someone like him makes me want to kill him, and if I think about too much longer her as well.
Why the fuck would she degrade herself like this with him? This makes no sense.
I leave Ricky at the bar and head outside. I breathe in the fresh air and the red haze lifts from my vision.
The regret of keeping her away resurfaces and I know without a doubt, if she had been with me she would never have got close to someone like Dean with me and the club around to watch out for her.
Pulling out my phone, I speed dial Sally’s number and wait for her to answer.
It rings enough times that I think I’m going to get her voicemail when she picks up.
“What is it?” she asks, without taking a breath to greet me normally.
“I just met Kyla’s boyfriend.”
“He turned up?” she sounds more shocked than I did seeing him here in the flesh.
“Yeah, played the caring boyfriend but then one of my brother’s recognised him and shit kicked off. Why did you tell him where she was?”
I can hear her moving about when she admits, “He wouldn’t believe me she was gone, I thought if he turned up at your club he’d believe it then. Also, I knew you would react the way he deserves, he’s a snake and needs his venom cut off.”
At least we’re on the same page as far as Dean is concerned.
“He ran off before we could do any real damage, call me if he comes to you again. I mean it, Sally. No more fuckin’ secrets.”
“I promise, it’s all his fault, Thomas.”
“Neither you or Kyla have to worry about him now, I won’t let him near her again,” I vow.
“You just have to make sure you keep her away from him, she’s just as bad.”
“She isn’t going anywhere, Sal.”
We talk for another five minutes before she has to go and I understand her underhand motive for telling Dean where our daughter is. Sally’s faith in me is infinite.
Heading back into the bar I find Ricky and question him about Dean and everything he has on him.
I never thought I’d see Dean again. He’s a little punk and got what he deserved, I’d do it again and again given the chance. When he knew I wouldn’t run around for him he turned on me, not that I was on a friendly basis with him in the first place.
I didn’t take him seriously until two inmates cornered me in my cell and thought they could take pleasure from me on his say so. No way in hell was I letting that happen. I fought back until I couldn’t see through the anger and he didn’t take me seriously until I boldly cornered him myself and gave him a warning of who I was. I remember the feeling when the shank pierced through his skin. I used all my strength and it felt like a hot knife sliding through butter. It may have been the first time I had stabbed someone but it wasn’t because I was a pussy. I had never been in a position where it had to go that far. I made my point and after that he never bothered with me again. I kept waiting for him to retaliate but he never did, when he saw me, he walked away.
Knowing Dean is Kyla’s dealer makes my blood boil, if he could plot against me, someone who can look out for themselves, he would know Kyla wouldn’t stand a chance against him.
I look up from my beer I haven’t been drinking and see two officers heading towards the clubhouse on the camera screens behind the bar.
I stay where I am at the bar and watch as everyone remains calm knowing we haven’t done anything to warrant a visit from them. Cas and Sparky hide their frustration and remain at their table.
Within seconds they walk through the door looking a little anxious and scan the area before calling out for Cas.
“What are you doing here, Jake?” Cas calls out, still not getting up to greet them.
“We’ve had a report you’re holding a woman here against her will,” he replies.
Pope at the other end of the bar to me sits straighter and downs his shot of whiskey.
“You’ve had a wasted trip, everyone who’s here wants to be here. You’re the one with prisoners, not us,” Cas quips.
“So there’s no one here by the name of Kyla Flynn?”
“Yeah, she’s here but again, she’s here of her own free will.”
I slide off my stool quietly and creep up the stairs unnoticed and head for Kyla’s room.
“Open it, Pope needs her,” I order the prospect.
He quickly does as he is told and opens the door.
Kyla is sitting by the window picking at her nails. She looks like shit but she looks a lot healthier than she did the other day. She is definitely making progress.
She jumps at my arrival and pulls down the large shirt she is wearing to cover herself a little more.
“The police are here thinking all sorts. You need to go down there and tell them you are here of your own free will,” I tell her, throwing her a pair of leggings I find lying on the floor.
“Put them on.”
“But I’m not here of my own free will,” she spits, sliding her legs into the leggings.
She has more life in her today.
I make my way over to her and grab her chin firmly, forcing her to look at me.
There is definitely more spark in her eyes.
“Your dad is doing everything he can for you. Are you that far gone he means nothing to you? They’ll take him away if you go down there confirming you’re being held here against your will, is that what you want?”
I may be going overboard but it’s a likelihood if they find her locked up in this room and with her selfish attitude.
“No,” she finally admits.
“Go down there then and tell them you’re here to live with your dad now and you’re not feeling well. Make it convincing and I’ll see if I can talk your dad round to letting you out of this room.”