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Chapter Seven-Ember

"Ouch! Could you be careful, woman?" Arick growled as he pulled his arm aray. I frowned and dropped the blood soaked rag into the already red tinted water.

"Quit your bitching. It's not like I can heal you like I would heal myself. I could possibly kill you since you have that little problem with your blood." I retorted crossing my arms over my chest. My kitchen table had the contents of a first-aid kit spread out over it, a stack of rags, and a bowl of soapy, hot water. I had given Arick one of my bigger shirts to wear. Seeing him shirtless was making me uncomfortable.

"I wouldn't be bitching if you weren't treating my arm like a potato you were scrubbing clean." he snapped as he looked at the deep gash that started bleeding again. Coi looked up from his Meow Mix to give a small meow, before returning to his feast.

"What happened to Mr. Manners I met back at the shop? Did he die and leave this ass hole in charge?" I asked with a frown.

"Mr. Manners left when you threatened his life not only once, but twice." Arick replied poking at the gash. I smacked his hand away.

"Stop that." I hissed. "Didn't you say you had some demonic powers?"

"I didn't get the demonic ability of healing and even if I had, I wouldn't be able to heal this wound since it was inflicted by a demon." he said as if I was six.

"Well, sorry I forgot that fact." I said grabbing his arm gently. I smoothed some triple anti-biotic cream over the gash and laid gauze over the wound before wrapping his arm up tightly. I saw him wince out of the corner of my eye and eased up a little. "By the way, thank you."

"For what?" he said with surprise in his voice. He was probably surprised by how soft my tone was considering we were practically at each others throats only a few moments before.

"For caring about Mrs. Rickson enough to attack that leech when she talked about Mrs. Rickson's death." I explained.

"Amelia took me in when my family turned me away after my... demotion." he said softly. I nodded, remembering how Mrs. Rickson had taken me under her wing when I walked into her shop soaking wet from the rain, no home, and a mewing Coi in my arms. She gave me a job, found me a place to live, and gave me the family I needed.

"I think she was just one of those people who would help anyone, even if they were the most wanted criminal in the world." I commented tying the bandage. "That should hold."

"Thanks." he said flexing his arm, testing out the bandage. I stood and brushed my hands on my jeans.

"Knowing Jet, we should get out of here and hole up in a haven or something like that." I said.

"Jet?" Arick asked. "Who is that?"

"Jetylk." I said with a small wince. I had forgotten that Arick thought I didn't know who Jetylk was. "If he really wants me, he won't stop until he has me."

"And just how do you know Jetylk?" Arick questioned. I started clearing off the table and ended up dropping a few things.

"It's a long story and there just isn't enough time to tell you the whole thing." I answered, crouching down to pick up the fallen items.

"Is he the reason you betrayed the other guardians?" he pressed.

"I told you it was a long story. Now drop it." I snapped, dropping the items into the metal case.

"He is, isn't he?" Arick said as he stood.

"I really don't want to get into it right now. Just let laying dogs lie." I said facing him. Arick grabbed my right arm and brushed a finger along the scar there. The action made goosebumps rise along my arms. I scolded myself for taking off my jacket, which had left me in a bright orange tee.

"Did he give you this?" Arick asked in a smokey, hushed tone. I noticed how his crystal blue eyes darkened every so slightly. If I didn't know any better, I would say that annoying me was turning him on.

"No. Now stop with the questions." I replied coldly while pulling my arm free from his grip. I grabbed the bowl of water and turned to pour it down the drain when Arick's arm caught me around the waist. He pulled me flush against him so I could feel the hard muscles of his chest against my back.

"Don't like the questions?" he whispers in my ear. I slammed my head back into his face, which granted my release. I turned and dumped the contents of the bowl over his head.

"I don't like the questions and I most certainly do not like being groped. So, you are going to keep your hands to yourself from now on. Understand?" I snapped before shoving the bottom of the bowl into his chest. "Now, I am giong to go pack and when I return, this kitchen better be spotless or I'll take it out of your hide."

"Can I get a dry shirt?" Arick asked wiping water from his face as I brushed past him to walk to my bedroom.

"No, you get to suffer with the wet one you're wearing." I replied.

"Why?" he whined.

"You crossed the one line I would kill most men over."
 


Submitted: August 03, 2013

© Copyright 2023 Kirsten Tousignant. All rights reserved.

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