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  • Writer's pictureGina A. Jones

Saving Ash (book#2) Chapter-Sixteen



I can’t tell you anything that was said. Once I saw the names on the headstones, all sense of hearing went silent. The sound of blood rushing through my ears filled the dead space. The look Ash gave me sent shivers down my spine.


His…Stepmother?


But Hunter said Pippa and Ash dated. No wonder Ash hates his father. Though he’s never actually said the words, he’s never expressed affection, either.


When he took my hand, my body trembled. I could see dark shadows behind his eyes as he glared down at me.


Why me? How did I become involved in his hell?


Because I’m so infatuated by him. My stupid, dumb, young self thinks I can change him. Save him. Not only the fact there was some love triangle in the Sinclair family, why are these two people dead?


We are back in the car now. It's quiet as Ash and his father stare one another down. I don’t want to be here. None of this pertains to me. I’m caught in the crosshairs of their sins.

Sins of the father.


How did I think this would be a great opportunity for me?


“Son, I want you and your date to have dinner with me tonight.” It sounds more like an order.


“She’s not a date. I told you what she was to me.”


“Yes. But why haven’t I heard any of this before?”


“Why do you think?” Ash says behind clench teeth.


Did his father steal his girlfriend? How could he live with himself? How could any woman do that? What kind of woman was she? Hunter said they weren’t close: that I wouldn’t understand Ash and her relationship.


“Cinder and I have plans. I honored your wish to be here today. And that is all.” Ash looks down to me and takes my hand. I wish I knew what it really meant. Does he really want more than what we have agreed on? There’s no contract. I can leave at any time.


But I don’t want to?


I want to crawl deep into his mind, see what haunts him. Though I think I know, now.


“Son, I really wish you would reconsider. We are all we have left.”


“I know exactly what is left. Let’s leave it at that.”


The car pulls into the parking garage of the penthouse and next to the elevator. The driver gets out and opens the door.


“Son, aren’t you going to say, good bye?”


“I have, several times. Goodbye, Father,” he says, and climbs out of the car. He reaches in and takes my hand.


“Good day, Mr. Sinclair, Miss,” the driver says to us. Ash nods and pulls me to the evaluator. I wait for him to drop my hand as soon as the doors close and end this charade we are in. But he doesn’t. In fact, his hold tightens.


He’s looking straight ahead. I need to reach him. Catch him in the moment of this fallen state.

“Ash, are you okay. What do you need from me?”


He slowly looks over to me, his eyes a kaleidoscope of colors. He looks so helpless. I want to hold him.


“Please, don’t leave me, Cinder.”


“Ash, I’m here. I’m not going to leave you.”


Suddenly, he falls to his knees. This is too much for him. I drop to the elevator floor and hold him. He wraps his arms around me, tightly.


“I need you, Cinder. The things you will come to learn about me will make you want to run. I don’t blame you if you do.”


“Ash, there’s nothing so bad that I won’t be able to stay with you.”


Unless he’s the one…


I take the key from his coat pocket and place it into the lock. The elevator ascends to the penthouse floor. The door opens, and I help him to stand.


“Come on, Ash. Let’s get you inside. Get you…safe.” He looks at me when I say the word. Is there a safe place for him?


Holding his hand, I lead him to the door and open it. All things of last night come back to me. Him watching me draw in the nude. The music. The butterflies. His love making.


Yes, Ash made love. He didn’t demand or…fuck. He made love to me. There’s hope. He can change, whether he knows it or not. I take him over to a chair and start to help him down.


“No, take me to the bedroom,” he says.


I take him by the arm and lead him to the bedroom. I sit him on the bed and move down to remove his shoes. He watches as I do. His shoes are off, and I tell him to lie back. “You want something to drink?”


“No, I just want you to stay with me. Lay next to me,” he says. My heart breaks with the sound of his voice. Almost like a child.


I cuddle up with him and he pulls me close. I can feel the beating of his heart. He feels sweaty underneath his clothes.


“Ash, you’re in a cold sweat. Let me remove your clothes and cover you up.”


He doesn’t resist and allows me to removes his clothes. I lie him back down and proceed to remove my clothes and crawl under the covers with him. I can feel him shiver.


 A few minutes go by, and his shivers lessen. I turn and look into his eyes, my hands coming to his face and offer him tenderness. He’s so beautiful. So beautifully broken, and I want to give all I have to heal him. The ruthless man I knew in Providence is gone. Replaced by a broken boy.


The pictures in the box.


His little brother.


His first love taken by his father.


The pictures in the box—not explained.


Is that the last clue? The piece of the puzzle that will open the mystery of this man?


“Tell me what you are thinking, Cinder. I told you, you would have more questions after today.”


I hold his face and look into his eyes. “I’m thinking you were deeply hurt when your girlfriend married your father. That had to be hard for you as a young man.”


“She was never my girlfriend.”


“But Hunter…”


“Hunter was confused. Heavily on drugs at the time. Pippa was his sister and my piano teacher. I was only fourteen when they married. She was twenty-four.”


“Oh. That is quite an age difference between your father and her. But yet, not uncommon,” I say, not sure what he wants to hear.


“I was…I was infatuated with her.”


“When she was your piano teacher?”


“And when they married. You will never understand…as a young boy…”


“I can understand a young boy having a crush on his pretty teacher.”


“It was more than a crush.”


A lone tear runs down his cheek, and as much as I hate hearing how he must still be in love with this…woman, I wipe it away and offer my sympathy. “That was a long time ago. You’ve moved on. Grown into a man. She’s gone.”


“She will never be gone. She lives within me.”


I can’t take anymore of this Pippa shit and my anger gets the best of me. I pull the covers off and rush out of the bed. The power she has from the grave, I could never match.


“Cinder, where are you going? You said you wouldn’t leave. I need you.”


“I can’t, Ash. This woman has your head so screw up, that you can’t even see me. No matter how much I want to crawl inside your head, I feel she will always come first.”


He gets up out of the bed and comes to me. “Comes first? What do you mean?”


“What do you think I mean? You’re so in love with her, that there will never be room for me. Don’t you get it?” I start to cry and feel all is at a loss. I don’t know where I stand with him. And here I am, crying for him to love me.


“Please, give me time. I’ve made the decision to…change. I don’t want to live with her ghost. And it’s not what you think.”


“Ash, it’s exactly what I think. She was your first love crush, and a man never forgets his first love. What you’re experiencing is not normal.”


“It’s because of what she did to me. What she made me become.”


“She broke your heart. Yes. But you were just a young boy with a crush on your teacher. It’s your own fault you thought there could be more between you. Don’t you see? A boy with a crush?”


“It wasn’t a crush that changed me, Cinder.”


“Then, what was it? I need to understand.”


“I was her…slave


The pictures in the box.


Her slave!? Sex slave?

“I…I. Ash, what are you telling me? That your stepmother…”


“Yes, I was hers to do whatever she pleased. What started off as a young boy’s love for a woman, turned into a nightmare.”


“Did you ever tell anyone? Your father? Is that why he was divorcing her?”


“No. I never told anyone. Except my therapist…and now you.”


I’m still aghast, and I know I’m looking at him in complete and utter shock. I know sexual abuse is real and happens to lots of young people. But it never occurred to me it could happen to a strong, young man. Ash.


“Cinder, I don’t like the way you are looking at me. I told you, there are demons in me that won’t sleep.”


“But Ash, you were abused. It wasn’t your fault. Don’t you see? You could have said something. Told her, no. You were…older. I’m sure stronger than her.”


He turns away from me. We are both still naked, and I notice he is hard. Why?


“You become what you want, Cinder,” he says in a voice I barely recognize. It’s almost demonic.


Do I stay? Continue to help him? Save him?


“What…what does that mean…Ash?”


He slowly turns and looks at me through dark, hallow eyes. I’ve lost him. He walks across the room, becoming closer. My heart beats a thousand times per second. Blood rushes through my ears, deafening me to all sounds. He’s frightening me the closer he gets. I back up, coming to a halt when I hit the wall.


“Ash. Stop. You’re scaring me.”


“You should know me by now, the kind of man I am. You’ve seen it. You’ve tasted it. You were pleasured by it. And that was only a taste of what I’m capable of.”


He stops when there’s no more room between us. His cock is hard and pressed between my legs. I don’t know whether to scream, or let him have me.


I’m scared.


I’m confused.


I’m turned on.


What is happening?


“I never told anyone or stopped her…because I loved every second she gave me,” he whispers in a deep and dark tone in my ear. His words run through my body, heating me beyond measurable. “Now, in order to rid myself of her demons, I must unleash them.”


***

Saving Ash© 2024 Gina A. Jones rights reserved under the International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.


This is a work of fiction. Names, places, characters and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to any actual persons, living or dead, organizations, events or locales is entirely coincidental.

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andreasmithauthor
08 mag
Valutazione 5 stelle su 5.

I'm addicted!

Mi piace

dashafehrenbacher
02 mag
Valutazione 5 stelle su 5.

That explains things a bit more.

Mi piace

Ospite
01 mag
Valutazione 5 stelle su 5.

How many colors does Ash have??? Can’t wait to see what happens next.

Mi piace

shannon Cheripka
01 mag
Valutazione 5 stelle su 5.

Wow! Another layer of ash.

Mi piace
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