Tears Of Betrayal: Chapter 9

DEMITRI

Opening the security door, I’m well aware of Ariana watching from the top of the stairs. My body blocks the keypad, so there’s no way she’ll see the code.

I go inside and check my phone for missed calls and messages. Not seeing anything, I glance over the monitors and seeing Ariana creep toward the security door, the corner of my mouth lifts.

I walk to the door, and when I open it, she jumps back and then begins to look all flustered before she darts back up the stairs like a scared rabbit.

I get way too much enjoyment from the moment, and pulling the door shut behind me, I follow after Ariana.

I find her standing in front of the sliding doors, her breaths still coming fast from being startled while she tries to act casual.

You’re a dick, Demitri.

Wanting to gain some ground with the girl so she’ll relax around me, and because she can’t protect herself to save her life, I say, “Seeing as we have nothing to do, want me to show you a couple of ways to defend yourself?”

Ariana turns her face to me with a what-the-hell expression. “You’re willing to show me how to kick your butt?”

I let out a chuckle. “Trust me, no matter how much I teach you, that will never happen.”

“Why? Because you’re this big bad man, and I’m a woman?”

“No,” I reply, moving closer to her. “Because I’m the best.”

“Ugh, turn down the arrogance a notch,” she mutters, but then she adds, “Fine, it’s not like I have anything better to do.”

Heading toward the gym, I grumble, “You make it impossible to be nice to you.”

“Yeah, kidnap me and then expect me to thank you for it.”

I walk over to an open space with a mat for sparring and turn to face Ariana.

She gives me a barely tolerant look. “So, what do we do?”

“I assume you’ve never been in a fight?”

She lets out a chuckle and shakes her head. “Normal person, remember?”

“Okay,” I take a deep breath and let it out. Moving closer to Ariana, she keeps her eyes on me. “I’m going to show you how to get out of a chokehold.”

She pulls a disgruntled face. “I kind of have PTSD from the last time your arm was around my neck. Let’s skip that one. Rather show me how to hit someone.”

I stare at Ariana, wondering just how much I traumatized her.

Probably a fuck ton.

“We’re doing the chokehold. It will help you deal with shit knowing you can get out of it in the future.”

“Will I get to choke you?” she asks, giving me a glare.

I let out a soft chuckle. “You can try.” As I move behind her, Ariana tenses and watches me from over her shoulder. “Relax. I’m not going to hurt you.”

“Forgive me for not believing a word you say,” she scoffs.

I move in closer and slowly bring my arm around her front. Her hands instantly dart up, and she grabs hold of my forearm. Spinning around, her breaths come fast, and her features tighten with panic.

“No.” She shakes her head hard. “Whatever you’re trying to do, it’s not going to work.”

“I’m not trying anything, Ariana.”

She takes a couple of steps backward and glances at the doorway. “This act… a friendly training session,” her eyes come back to me, “I won’t fall for it. You’re the kidnapper, and I’m the hostage. So don’t make this something it’s not.”

I let out a deep sigh. “You’re overreacting, and it’s really starting to annoy me. If I left you in Seattle, you’d be dead by now.”

“Says you!” Ariana begins to walk away from me, but then she stops and swings back. “Do you actually expect me to believe the shit coming out of your mouth? Do I look that gullible?”

“Believe what you want,” I mutter. “Fact is you’re a Bratva princess, and people want you dead. The sooner you accept that, the longer you’ll manage to stay alive.”

“I have nothing to do with that world!” she shrieks, her cheeks flaming with anger.

I close the distance between us, and with a dark glare, I hold her gaze. “Stop lying to yourself, Ariana. You might have been able to stay out of the Bratva until now, but you’re as much a part of it as I am.”

Done with this conversation, I shove past her and head back to the security room.

 


 

ARIANA

 

Since the fall out in the gym yesterday, I’ve been doing my best to avoid Demitri, which is near impossible, seeing as I’m stuck on a damn island with him.

Feeling restless and caged, I open the sliding door and step out onto the deck.

This is the weirdest kidnapping ever.

Fine, so far, I’ve been lucky, and Demitri hasn’t tortured me. Actually, he’s done nothing but feed me.

And he tried to show you how to protect yourself.

As if. He was probably trying to pull some kind of move so I would let my guard down.

Hearing wood splintering, I frown at the direction the sound is coming from and begin to walk toward it. Rounding the corner of the house, my mouth drops open, and my eyebrows slowly lift.

Demitri swings an ax down on a piece of wood, and it splits right down the middle. His biceps strain against the sleeves of the white t-shirt he’s wearing.

Sigh, jerk or no jerk, he sure is something to look at.

I watch as he chops piece after piece of wood, and it makes me forget about my predicament.

Taking hold of the bottom half of his shirt, he pulls the fabric up and wipes it over his face, giving me a view of his drool-worthy abs.

Take it off.

As if he can hear my thoughts, he grabs hold of the fabric at the back of his neck and then yanks the shirt off in one go.

Oh, yeah. That’s more like it.

He continues to chop wood, and watching his muscles ripple while they shine with the drops of sweat beading on his skin is damn close to porn.

Demitri slams the ax down on the wood, and it splinters, and then he takes a step back and slowly lifting his head, I watch as he sucks in a breath of air.

And then our eyes collide, and I can’t make myself move even if I wanted to.

Seriously. It’s not right for one man to be so hot.

Dropping the ax to the grass, Demirti begins to walk in my direction.

My heart starts beating like crazy, and there’s a voice telling me to run, but my feet are glued to the spot.

He stops right in front of me, and seeing his glistening chest up close is almost dizzying. Then he lifts his hand to my face, and his thumb brushes over my bottom lip.

I let out a breath, my senses overwhelmed and my survival instinct missing in action.

“Don’t say I didn’t do anything nice for you,” Demitri taunts me.

“Huh?” Finally, I manage to move back a step.

He jabs a thumb over his shoulder. “The show. It was all for you, Malyshka, and by the expression on your face, it looked like you appreciated every second of it. You’re welcome.”

Letting out an amused chuckle, he walks back to the pile of wood.

“Jackass,” I call out, and then I dart back around the corner of the house and make a run for the sliding doors.

You have to stop drooling over the guy.

He’s bad, not some prince charming.

I let out a snort.

Ha, hell will probably freeze over the day Demitri is charming.

Walking back into the house, I mutter, “If I get out of this alive, I better get my head examined.”

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