Authors: J. M. Sevilla
Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Romance, #Contemporary, #New Adult & College
Becoming Noah Baxter
By J.M. Sevilla
Copyright 2014 J.M. Sevilla
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any form or by any manner whatsoever without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is entirely coincidental.
Part II: Becoming Noah Baxter
By J.M. Sevilla
Book Two of a Two part series.
For those who wanted to know Jay and Lily's story just as desperately as I wanted to tell it. I wish I could meet you all and personally give you a heartfelt thanks for all your love and support.
Friday, January 24
“He'll find out about her too,” Lazra's last words are still ringing in my ears. “He'll find out about her, and he'll take great joy in killing her with his claws as you watch. The same way he did with your mother and fath–” I shot her before she could finish. I look down at my hands, still covered in my blood, and remember the way they had trembled while she spoke and when I pulled the trigger. I don't remember them ever doing that. They're still a bit shaky.
I open the door to the Escalade, stopping to stare up into the sky to catch one last glimpse of the jet that is taking Lily home, where she belongs.
I rub a palm over my chest, trying to take some of the sting out, but it does no good. I can't believe how much this hurts. I press my palm in deeper, digging it into my flesh. The pain of her absence makes me even more aware of how much she's become a part of me. How did this even happen? How did I let myself fall in love like this? I don't understand how the absence of her makes it hard to breathe.
I bend over to rest my palms on my thighs, but the searing pain from my gunshot wound makes me almost blackout.
I think I popped a stitch. Motherfucker.
I stumble into the Escalade and tell the driver to have Vault get the doctor back.
Goddamn, I'm in a world of pain. My emotions are too much for me to handle right now. I focus on my injury, being more comfortable with physical wounds than emotional ones.
A picture of Lily's tear-streaked face looking out the jet's window flashes to the front of my mind.
I'm in agony now.
A pained moan leaves my lips. The driver thinks it's from the popped stitch and speeds up, informing me we're almost there.
I keep causing her pain and I keep vowing to myself to never be the cause of it. Well, I fucked that up. Again.
I continually rub my chest, thinking the pain of this might be what kills me.
Where's the air in this fucking car? I can't breathe. I roll down the window, but it does no good; my lungs won't suck it in.
I knew this girl would be my undoing. I knew it from the moment she came back to my place with that damn pie in her hands and rambling shit I didn't even hear; all I could focus on was her sinfully perfect lips. I had never had the urge to kiss someone before that moment.
I might never get to kiss her again.
I'm hyperventilating now. I'm not strong enough to handle everything transpiring inside me. This is why I kept shutting her out. She brings forth too many parts of myself I've tried so hard to lock away and pretend don't exist.
The doctor is ready and waiting for me when we make it back to Vault's. I ask him to hit me up with as many pain killers as he can without killing me. He's hesitant, so I harshly let him know he doesn't have a choice. The doc quickly gets to work injecting me. I mumble something to Vault about making sure his men are still searching for Arianna as my eyelids droop. I pass out in minutes, relishing the relief of not drowning in my emotions.
Tuesday, February 4
“Ready?” Charlie asks, opening the security room door and poking his head in.
I've been in here all day. Well, really I'm in here for most hours of the day, watching the monitors and looking at the bank's layout, trying to go over all possible ways that The Marker could try to enter.
“Yeah, let's do this,” I respond, getting up to follow him. Charlie's one of the only guards working for Vault that I tolerate. He keeps things simple and to the point, never looking to make conversation beyond what's necessary. He's also one of the best I've seen at his job; so good, in fact, I want to suggest that Vault starts training him to one day be his head of security.
We walk down the hall, exiting the door that puts us directly into the waiting area to Vault's office, which is on the second to top level of Cole Private Bank and Trust. The top level is where Vault lives. I thought I lacked a social life, but at least I've traveled all over the world. Vault seems to have locked himself away in his own building.
We're meeting Vault and the rest of his men to make the final preparations to extract Arianna from where we believe she's being held captive.
Walking past Vault's two assistants, I give a slight nod of my head and a small upturn of my lips, which is more than they usually get out of me; hell, that's more than most people get. I'm trying this new thing were I'm not a complete ass to everyone. Most days I fail.
I'm doing this to try...well, I'm not exactly sure what I'm trying to do, I just know that if I want a life with Lily I've got to learn how to “play well” with others. It's a lot harder than I thought it was going to be. Most people annoy the shit out of me, and the more I try to be nice the more annoying they seem to get. Especially if you smile at them; it's like an invitation for them to start yakking away at you.
Take the other morning for example: I needed to get out of here for a few minutes and went across the street to get coffee. The line was long (I do surprisingly well with long lines, they don't bother me; it is what it is) and the girl behind me smiled and I awkwardly gave her one back. For whatever reason, this gave her permission to start a one-sided conversation. I don't give a flying fuck what drink you're ordering as we wait in line for coffee, and I especially don't care about hearing your debate whether to go for your usual sugar-free, non-fat vanilla thingy, or if you should splurge because it's Friday and you've been staying on your diet all week. I had politely nodded my head and told her to go ahead and splurge, she deserved it. For a minute I feared she was going to hug me. That's the first and last time I'm ever going to a place outside of my own for a damn cup of coffee.
It's ridiculous, but if I had that conversation with Lily I'd be grinning the whole time with how adorable she is.
Is it possible for me to not think of her every other second? It's making it hard to concentrate, especially when my mind decides to remind me of what she looks like naked.
Man, she has great, perky tits.
Great, just what I need – a hard cock as I enter Vault's office.
When we walk through the double doors to Vault's main office, Asswipe is standing in front of the wall of screens, glaring at me, looking like he doesn't understand why I'm still around.
Funny, I was wondering the same thing about him.
I hate that guy. Besides him being shitty at his job, he threatened to put a bullet through my girl's head. That shit doesn't fly with me.
for getting his own gun out of his hand while I had him locked around the neck. I'd hate me for that too; that shit would be embarrassing with your boss right there, seeing the whole damn thing.
The rest of the guards who are helping extract Arianna are here too. I can never remember their names, so I just say “hey” to get their attention. All together, there are seven of us to get her out.
It's taken longer to figure out where Jaxon Henley's men took her than I would have liked. We had to be careful who we contacted and make sure they wouldn't let it leak what we were up to. Word had already spread like wildfire about the shootout at The Fairmont and the death of Lazra and her men. Unfortunately, everyone seems to know that Link (I hate that fucking name) was involved and was the one to kill her with the help of Vault's men, just nobody knows why.
After I found out everyone in my circle had heard what had happened, I had a full-blown panic attack. What if they find out about Lily? Even thinking about it now has my anxiety building, but as far as we know she's still a secret. Thank God for that. I really don't want to have to go and hunt down every contract killer and their employers, but I will if it means she's safe. I know that sounds arrogant of me to think I could kill them all. I'm not stupid, I know I could never pull it off, but I sure as fuck would try. I'm
overprotective and paranoid when it comes to her.
Eliza Raine, or Lazra if you ask anyone from my world, had made a large sum of money from owning brothels and kink clubs in the parts of the US that allowed them. We found out from her (before I shot the crazy bitch to death) and from some of Vault's contacts that Jaxon Henley was one of her major clients, but not in the way one would think. Lazra uses her clubs to hide the services she really offers: a place for people to act out their darkest desires (and by darkest I mean full on twisted and satanic, both sexually and physically). She has men and women you can rent for the night to do with
you please, even in the sickest of ways. I thought
had issues, but the people who use Lazra's private services make my need for revenge seem like a healthy outlet.
We checked Lazra's kink club in San Fransisco, but it didn't show any signs of being more than that. Word is she has secret passageways to her
Charlie's the one who volunteered to hopefully find a worker or member who might accidentally slip out a clue. He came across a man who was bragging that he currently had the highest bid for a gorgeous woman his buddy had recently acquired, and would be offering her out soon for others to try.
We dug a little deeper, and it turns out that Jaxon motherfucking Henley had made arrangements to sell Arianna to a business partner of his who had wanted her since the minute they met during an event Arianna had accompanied Jax to. Henley saw it as a way to have the man be in his favor, and to keep Arianna from sharing what she had learned about him.
We're going to the man's house who bought her tonight, hoping that's where he's keeping her.
While we wait for Vault to join us, Asswipe and I have ourselves a little stare down. I decide to unleash the demon inside me and have it come full force on my features, crossing my arms and flexing to make my muscles expand. His eyes flinch in response to my demeanor. He tries covering it up as though he didn't react, but we both know he did.
Vault finally decides to grace us with his presence, appearing as cool and aloof as ever, one hand always holding a glass of expensive-ass whiskey. He leans against his desk, unbuttoning the jacket to his three-piece suit, waiting for our attention.
A few men sit on the couch. I move to the wall of monitors, wanting to stand closer to Asswipe, hopefully pissing him off like his existence does to me.
Charlie joins me, the only guy I've met besides Vault and Malik who was never intimidated by me. I think he also likes that I never try to engage him in conversation, us both having a mutual need to keep our distance from people, oddly making it so most of our time is spent together.
“You all know your roles for tonight, correct?” Vault's head of security asks.
I wait impatiently while everyone else nods. I'm the one who organized this fucking thing. Besides, what's so hard to remember about ambushing a place and to follow orders? This is one of the many reasons I would go insane working for Vault long term.
We break and head for the gold elevator.
I hear Asswipe make a mumbled comment behind me that has me turning around, slamming him against the wall with my forearm pushed into his neck, “You care to fucking repeat that?”
His face is slightly red from my hold but I don't let up.
I said,” he croaks, “I'm tired of waisting our time on Lincoln's pussy.”
I work my jaw, trying to find reasons it's a bad idea to knock him out.
“Don't fucking come then,” I seethe, finding it hard to hold in my rage. “It's not like you'll be of any use, unless we want our targets to get a hold of your gun.”
Asswipe has the fucking nerve to try and swing his fists at me, and I lose any reason I might have come up with.
A forceful jab to his ribs has him curling over. If he wasn't Vault's cousin I'd have done a lot worse. I'm not so sure I won't before my time here is done.
As we make the drive, I realize that this will be my last hit before The Marker. It seems surreal, like this part of my life can't possibly be coming to an end. Am I ready for all this to be over? To never again experience the kind of adrenaline rush that's already amping me up?
Do I even know how to be normal?
No, I sure as fuck don't.
I'm going to try though, I
to try. I
. I don't have a choice, Lily owns me heart and soul. I will fight to protect her, keep her safe and secure. Forever. I could honestly spend the rest of my life content trying to see that she's happy and safe. It really wouldn't be that hard, and I'd fucking love it.
I quickly scrape the grin off my face before the others can see, but it's pointless; Lily makes me feel almost human, with real emotions and feelings.
The Escalade stops a few houses down from the one we're hoping Arianna's being held at.
Immediately adrenaline surges through every vein in my body. I can't imagine drugs being a better high than this.
I shut Lily off for the time being, knowing she'll resurface the minute this shit is over and done.