22 March 2012

Amber's Advocate

Chapter Four


Insomnia was a bitch!  Especially when the prescribed drugs didn't do anything to help you sleep, she'd long stopped taking them because what was the point?  She hadn't been able to transition properly to British Summer Time and even if she did manage forty winks, she'd suddenly wake up screaming for her life.  Dan was no longer in the picture but every time she closed her eyes she would see his black devil eyes and his clump of a fist nearing towards her and the blood spurting out everywhere, like some Hitchcock movie.  The thought of it now, as her eyes focused on walking brought shivers down her back.  She willed those images away.  They would always be there but in time, they would fade... much like the scars on her body. 

It was a beautiful night in this part of town, where droves of men and women were making their way home from a night out.  The women in short vibrant dresses and the shortest of hemlines; their platform heels making their dainty legs look endless -struggled to remain upright as they walked down the street past Amber, probably intoxicated, having drunk the bar dry.  The whiff of alcohol confirmed that, making Amber nauseous and wrap her jumper closer around her as she watched them walk away.  She turned back to the objective at hand and started making her way towards the coffee shop a few blocks out.


Cade sat at the back of the black cab, stuck in traffic.  The red numbers on the meter read ten pounds twenty five pence and they'd only moved a meter in the last fifteen meters.  He was heading home, home to his flat in Camden.  He'd been annoyed at himself for not moving faster, an opportunity to talk to Millie Bright Blake and Liam Blake -  but maybe it was a good idea that he hadn't.  What the hell would he have said to them? 

'Remember me?  I was the bastard who put your friend in her place-'

No, it wasn't a great way to make friends.  He put his hand through his hair, grimacing at the combination of gel and wax in his hand.  He wasn't used to putting that crap in his hair but he had to make an effort.  He managed to get some gossip amidst eavesdropping on a few celebrities, enough to fill a column and justify the content.  If he got stuck, he could always trail Perez Hilton and was alarmed to find out, he knew of Perez Hilton.  He shook his head, to think that he would steep that low.  At least now, he could go home, take off the bloody tux and hit the sack.  The black cab still hadn't moved and he was getting impatient.  Outside his window he stared at a woman who was giggling amongst her friends, she was on the floor trying to be helped up.  Probably having fallen flat on her face by those ridiculous shoes that they wore.  They'd obviously lost all decorum as they bent down and was rewarded by honking and wolf whistles.  Cade looked at the meter, it had shifted to fifteen pounds, bloody hell.  He looked out the window, the girls were up off the floor making their way down the street and then that's when he saw her.  First it was the flicker of red and then he saw her face and her disappearing figure going in the opposite direction.  He delved into his pocket, withdrew a twenty pound note, handed it to the cab driver, told him to keep the change and ran in that direction. 

Her retreating figure was hugged in hip hugging denims and a cable knit jumper and her hair was loose, like flickering fire down her back.  He bypassed party goers and random pedestrians, all fading into the background.  He ran past her and stopped to take a breathe and managed to say her name in between gulps of breathe, "Amber." 

She stopped mid step and looked at him, the expression on her face unreadable.  They stood in silence for almost three minutes until she broke the silence with, "Are you following me?"

"I saw... you... an...and... I thought I'd see how you were," Cade said.

"That's an awful long way... just to see how I am?" she said looking behind her, trying to figure out where he'd run from.  She turned back towards him, hugging her jumper to her.

"Are you okay?"  Cade caught his breathe back, undoing his tux jacket

"Did you rub up against a penguin tonight or what?" Amber quipped, though her face was blank.

"No, I was at a Charity Gala," Cade replied, "It doesn't matter... stop avoiding my question."

"You must have been to the same charity gala that Millie and Liam were at," Amber commented.

"If you won't answer my question, tell me this... where are you going to at this time of the night?"

"That's none of your business, so if you'll excuse me," Amber dismissed him and walked away.

Cade followed, hands in pocket as he strode alongside her, "Then you won't mind if I keep you company."

Amber didn't know whether to be angry or feel less alone but she wasn't going to think about it.  Thinking would only resort to being stressed and she didn't want to be.  She'd blank out the image of the tall broad shouldered man dressed in a tux walking beside her.  She felt inferior with this man, it wasn't the same inferior she felt when she was with Dan but she felt small besides him.  His great encompassing stature to her lilith one- she had to admit he looked good in a tux. 

"I'm not going to pretend with you; I'm curious about you, about your life... but whether you choose to disclose that part of you to me is up to you, no pressure.  I just thought I'd put it out there, so there isn't this uneasy feeling between us, okay?"

Amber nodded.

"So, where is it that you're heading off to?" Cade asked.

"Coffee... I'm going for coffee, would you like to join me?" Amber asked.

"Why not," Cade smiled back and they walked the remainder of the way in peaceful silence.

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