The small group all piled through the doorway to their favourite pub. The scent of sweat and beer lingered in the air and surrounded every table. Cara and Ethan plonked themselves into a booth while Jessica bought the first round.
The door swung open and two gentlemen strolled in, an air of confidence surrounded them as they stood at the bar.
“Who is that?” Ethan gawked. Cara recognised one of them, he had sat next to her at the auditorium but apart from that, there was nothing screaming familiarity at her. She looked over at the two men, one with jet black hair, trimmed into a buzz cut, the other was a mousy blonde colour with a similar hairstyle. They both wore tiredness on their faces but their personalities were a stark contrast. Both were laughing and joking as they waited to be served. The blonde-haired man surveyed the room before his attention focused on Cara.
“Cara?” Ethan poked her, pulling her attention back.
“I don’t recognise them.” Cara shrugged at him, looking away from the handsome stranger.
Jessica had soon returned with drinks, and before long one drink became four until Ethan screamed “shots!” and bought everyone in the pub a shot each.
By eleven o’clock Cara was feeling the effects of the alcohol, excusing herself from the table to get a breath of fresh air, she made her way out the door. The crispness hit her like a bus, dizziness overcame her and she stumbled towards the bench in the beer garden.
“Whoa! Steady there!” Came a voice as a pair of hands grabbed her waist. Cara looked up to see a stunning set of deep brown eyes gazing at her, “You okay?” The deep voice asked. Clutching Cara’s waist still, the stranger guided her to the bench. He lowered her down carefully before handing her a glass of water, “Here.” He offered with a glistening smile.
Cara took the glass, trying to focus on the stranger in front of her. “Thanks.” She paused before taking a sip.
“No problem,” The stranger smiled back, crouching on the ground in front of her. He was now wearing a dark grey t-shirt and black jeans. His arms rested on his knees and Cara noticed how his forearms were golden and toned under the tattoos that adorned his arms. Her gaze lifted to his face, his jawline was kissed with light stubble but the sharpness of his facial structure was hypnotic.
The stranger watched as the girl in front of him gazed back intently, smiling back before standing up and taking a seat beside her. Cara took another sip of water, allowing the coolness to soothe her throat.
“Better?” The stranger asked.
“Much, thanks.” She responded.
“My favourite place,” the stranger sighed, his gaze moved distantly, admiring the flowers and trees that lined the beer garden.
“The beer garden?” Cara chortled back at him.
“No,” He chuckled back, shaking his head. “The outdoors.” He smiled, closing his eyes and letting the soft breeze brush past him, sweeping stray hairs from his head around and around. His accent was familiar to Cara, she couldn't place it but it was like a siren, pulling her to him.
“Can I get you another drink?” He asked, glancing at her empty glass.
“Sure.” Cara smiled, attempting to stand up.
“I’ll be back in two minutes.” The stranger smiled before placing Cara back on the bench, “Enjoy the fresh air,” He laughed, motioning around him with his arms before retreating inside.
Cara did as she was told, embracing the breeze that lightly kissed her skin. The sweet smell of the rose bushes beside her filled her senses and she welcomed the goosebumps that enveloped her arms. Cara closed her eyes, enjoying the silence.
“Here,” The stranger returned, placing a beer in front of her. Cara raised her glass and the stranger clinked his against it. “Cheers,” he said lowly, taking a swig of the drink.
“Have I seen you somewhere before?” Cara asked inquisitively.
“Maybe, I’m here and there,” the stranger said with a hint of mystery. Cara scoffed at the statement before taking another sip.
“Are you a hobo or something?” She replied mockingly.
“Do I look like a hobo?” The stranger sounded shocked, but the smile on his face said otherwise. He puffed his chest out before checking himself over. Cara couldn’t help but admire the muscles that adorned his physique, like some Greek god. His chest was threatening to burst from his shirt like a water balloon.
“No,” Cara giggled like a schoolgirl.
“That’s a cute laugh.” He flirted, looking up at Cara under his long eyelashes, cueing another girly giggle. “So tell me about yourself,” he urged, wanting to know as much about this woman as possible before the night ended.
“What do you want to know?” She smiled back shyly.
He shrugged back at her, “What do you do for work?” The stranger said.
“Really? You want to know what I do for work?” She questioned, knowing that no one took interest once she told them.
“Sure, or I could guess?” The stranger jested.
“Okay,” she replied, accepting the game.
“Hmm...” The strange pinched his chin in thought, “Primary School teacher?” He pointed to her.
“Nope,” She shook her head with a small smile. After a few guesses, the stranger gave up.
“Okay, tell me.” He raised his hands admitting defeat. Cara giggled at the gesture before telling him.
“I’m a biochemist.” She smiled, “what about you?”
“Whoa! Biochemist? Beautiful and smart!” He exclaimed, emphasising the word ‘and’. Cara blushed under the stranger’s announcement. “I’m in the army,” the stranger responded.
“So that explains the tattoos?” She pointed to his covered limbs.
The stranger twisted his arms back and forth, chuckling at her. “Yeah, I guess so.”
Cara glanced back at her watch, realising she had been outside for some time.
“I should get back to my friends.” She explained, lifting herself from the bench. She took a step forward, but her knees buckled underneath her before she felt the floor beneath her a warm arm wrapped itself around her waist protectively. She gazed up again to see the swirling chocolate eyes seeking hers. His lips twitched as his gaze travelled down to hers, the distance between their faces closing slowly. Time felt like it had stopped as the stranger grazed his lips across hers, his other arm snaked around her waist, caging her into his embrace. The warmth of his arms and chest caused heat to spike up her neck. He closed his lips on hers, claiming them as his own, Cara parted her lips gently, allowing the stranger’s tongue to massage hers. Their tongues tangled and teased as her hands cupped his face. A hand supported the base of her neck while the other gently caressed circles down her lower back. She moaned into their kiss, begging for more.
Thoughts of Rich sat at home with an anger-filled face flashed through her mind and Cara froze. She pulled away reluctantly, claiming her breath once more. She shook her head, fighting the overwhelming desire to continue kissing the stranger. His lips were soft and sent sparks to other areas of her body that hadn’t experienced such tenderness in so long.
“I have to go,” She said regrettably, pulling out of his arms. He cupped her chin between his finger, teasing her face towards him.
“I want you to stay,” he growled seductively, placing a tender kiss on her lips, and wrapping his arms around Cara’s waist, pulling her close. The sparks reappeared, sending shivers up Cara’s spine. The stranger revelled in the feeling of her in his arms, she fit perfectly and he decided there and then that she wasn’t going anywhere. Cara melted into the stranger’s arms, her fingers dragged through his hair, as she allowed her mouth to be violated once more.
The sun blazed through the curtains casting rays across Cara’s face. Heat enveloped her body and she felt the heavy shift of something across her stomach. Her eyelids fluttered open as she took in her surroundings, she laid in a bed, black sheets covered their bodies. The stranger’s legs tangled with her and exposed to the heat coming through the windows. A bronzed arm draped across her torso and she traced her fingers across the smooth skin, following the shapes and patterns of the black marks. Her fingers edged gently over the stranger’s shoulder, noticing several scars that adorned the back of this beautiful god-like figure. Cara fidgeted, the images of last night danced around her head. She recalled the feeling of the stranger’s fingers as they caressed every inch of her body, no area was left untouched. She could still remember the feeling of cold air replacing the heat where his lips had kissed, leaving a tingling sensation in its wake. The stranger had left her feelin
A short while later, the stranger returned with a bag of peas covered by a tea towel. “Here,” he spoke softly, placing the frozen bag gently on her face. His voice soothed her, Cara revelled in the coldness, the heat and pain dissipated slowly and she closed her eyes to enjoy the sensation. The pitter-patter of padded feet entered the room, a golden tail swished and snaked around the stranger’s legs. “Oh hello! And who are you?!” The stranger cooed at the dog. Taking the dogs face in his hands and making baby noises whilst the dog covered him in wet licks. “Diesel,” Cara muttered to him. “Well Diesel, what do you say to a little walk?” He continued cooing at the dog. The stranger smiled up at Cara, “keep the ice on, I’ll be back in a bit.” He winked before leading the golden fluff ball out. Cara walked towards the window, the throbbing in her head still evident as she held the frozen bag to it. She gazed out at the splendid view of the river t
Archer sat down on the sofa in Cara’s living room, the position faced a floor to ceiling high window that had the perfect view of the river that ran by the apartment building. Diesel sat on the floor between his legs, allowing Archer to pet him fondly. It had been fifteen minutes before Cara emerged from the shower, her damp blonde hair cascaded in waves over her shoulders complimenting her tanned skin. She had a white towel wrapped around her torso and white fluffy slippers that made Archer chuckle at the cute look. “Feel better?” He asked her. “Much,” she smiled, wincing at the lump on her face. She combed her hair out with her fingers and Archer gazed at her beauty as it enveloped her. “Fancy going for a walk?” He asked her, he enjoyed the outdoors and he was pretty sure that Cara could use the fresh air. “I'd love to, ’ll go get dressed.” She said beaming at him. She returned a little while later in a white summer dress that hugged
Archer pushed through the door to Cara’s apartment, scooping her up in his arms. Cara wrapped her legs around his waist as he pulled her to him urgently. His hand supported the base of her neck, drawing her into a passionate kiss. His hand tugged at her hair, pulling her head to the side to expose the sensitive spot on her neck. He traced his lips up and down her soft skin, inhaling her sweet vanilla scent. He listened attentively as both of their breathing increased hastily. Sparks lapped against their connection and you could almost smell the desire. Archer walked them to her bedroom effortlessly like a feather in his arms. He laid her gently down on the soft cotton sheets before pulling away to take in her beauty. Cara’s breathing hitched as he took in the sight below him. His hot breath swept across her face and Cara absorbed the heat, allowing it to bring a hot flush to her cheeks. He trailed febrile kisses along her neck and down her collar bone, whilst his hand dragged feveri
Cara rolled through her soft sheets, sighing at pleasant ache that rolled like a wave through her body. She stretched her arm out expecting to meet another body, her hand met emptiness. She lifted her head and sighed in disappointment. Cara wrapped the bed sheet around her body, noting the time on the bedside table. It was five o’clock, she had been asleep for at least 4 hours. She felt refreshed and satiated all at once. Cara stepped out into the leaving room, the tv was on and she could see a pair of slender feet sticking out from the side of the sofa. She tiptoed over, gazing at the adorable view in front of her. Archer was laid on his back, his legs crossed over with Diesel resting on top of him. He had one arm draped over the dog, whilst the other supported his head. The biceps on his arm contracted sharply, as his head rested on top. She noted the toned muscles, the tattoos that hugged them as they told their story. His eyes were closed and she was unsure how long he h
The following morning came far too quickly, Archer woke up facing the angel that he shared a bed with. Her hair covered her face like a curtain. His hand stroked past her face, pulling the golden strands away to admire her beauty further. Archer noticed the bruise was at its peak now. The sight provoked a fire in his stomach. If he ever saw that man again it would be the last time, he thought to himself. She quivered under his touch, her eyes sparkling as they opened. The sunlight was beaming through the curtains, casting shadows over their bodies. She murmured something under her breath as she tried to wake. “Good morning Angel,” Archer beamed at her. Dropping a kiss on her cheek. He wasn’t sure what had come over him the last couple of days but he had found himself becoming a soppy mess around Cara. She had a strange effect on him, bringing out a softer sid
The door to Archer’s study flung open, interrupting her memory. “Cara?” He called to her, he could hear sniffling coming from the kitchen. Heading towards the sound, he found her holding a piece of paper in her hands. Her eyes were red and puffy, her face etched in pain and confusion. “Cara? Whats wrong?” He walked towards her, an arm outstretched. “Don’t come near me!” She shouted, flinching away from his reach. She looked scared but that only urged Archer to walk closer to her, to shield her from whatever was hurting her. “Talk to me! What’s going on?” He pleaded, edging forward again. “You do not get to touch me!” She screamed. Archer froze, staring at her in shock. He didn’t understand what was going on and she refused to explain. “Cara please.” He almost whispered, his voice shaking. “Let me help!” Cara stormed out the kitchen, instantly grabbing her things from around Archer's bedroom and aggressively stuffing them into her bag. She stumbled and
Jessica and Cara talked through the night. Jessica tried to console Cara as much as possible but she could see her friend's hurt was more than just skin deep. Jessica had witnessed first hand the pain Zach had inflicted on Cara throughout their school years. Whilst he may never have laid a hand on her, it was all his doing, explicitly or not. Cara had received her fair share of bullies and to fall for another was on the invisible list of what not to do. As midnight crept in, Cara took herself to bed, hoping she would get some sleep. The tears had dried a while ago but she could still feel the dryness sting her cheeks. She was angry for allowing herself to be fooled by Zach, his good looks and charm had blinded her and she had fallen for it. She inhaled deeply, resting her head on the plush pillow. The darkness enveloped her and she begged the shadows to take the pain away. Closing her eyes, she tried to imagine a simpler life but she didn’t know what that was. It had been a