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|Music of the Heart(Runaway Train #1) by Katie Ashley|
“Can you sign these?” a busty blonde asked as she jerked the collar of her shirt down and thrust her boobs up at me.
She grinned. “You sign one and AJ signs the other.”
AJ chuckled. “I think this may be the last pair of tits our ol’ boy Jake signs, ladies. He’s officially been taken off the market.”
With my Sharpie, I scribbled my name across her skin. “I think I have to agree, man.”
The blonde pouted as AJ leaned in to sign. “His loss. This is an extra nice pair.” AJ winked as his pen lingered a little longer than it had to, which caused the girl to giggle. Leaning over, he whispered something in her ear. Her eyes widened and then she bobbed her head furiously.
I opened my mouth to argue that if he thought he was getting the bedroom tonight to bang this random chick, he could think again. I planned on some heavy third-base action with my girl but nothing more since I wouldn't dream of degrading her by taking her virginity on the bus. No, she deserved rose petals and thousand count sheets and nice shit. “AJ—” I began but the sound of a scream cut me off.
“What was that?” Rhys asked, craning his neck around the throng of fans.
Then another bloodcurdling scream came—this time calling for me. It cut me right through to my soul because I knew that voice. “Abby!” I cried, dropping whatever the last fan had shoved at me to sign. I started pushing and shoving people out of the way.
“Move dammit!” I didn’t give a shit that I was manhandling fans. Abby needed me.
Once I was out of the crowd, I started sprinting through the parking lot. Frank and AJ were close on my heels. When I rounded the side of the bus, I saw Abby crumpled on the ground, her once pristine, white dress stained with mud and grease, but worst of all blood. Bree stood over her, kicking her repeatedly.
“What the f**k are you doing?” I shouted running over to them. “Get your damn hands off of her, Bree!”
When she didn’t even falter at the sound of my voice, a growl erupted from deep within me as my fingers molded into Bree’s shoulders. With everything I had, I jerked her off of Abby. I slung her against the side of the bus so hard that I heard the unmistakable crack of bones breaking. Although Bree screamed in pain, I ignored her. My only focus was on Abby.
Crouching down, I nestled next to her and could see the extent of her injuries. Blood flowed like a crimson river from the large gash on the back of her head. Angry red welts were forming on her face, and her lip was busted and bleeding. Her hand clutched her abdomen while her head turned from side to side as she moaned.
My chest twisted so tight in agony that I found it hard to breathe. “Oh Jesus, Angel!”
Her eyelids fluttered open. “Jake?” she questioned hoarsely.
“I’m here now. You’re safe. No one is going to hurt you ever again.”
When Abby’s eyes closed, I glanced up at Frank. “Get the car!”
Without even answering me, he sprinted away. As gently as I could, I gathered Abby into my arms. When I pulled up to a standing position, it jostled us, and she cried out. “I’m sorry, baby. I’m so, so sorry.”
Her eyes widened as her brow furrowed in pain. “Jake…hurts…so bad.”
I grimaced. “I know, Angel, and I’m sorry. But we’re going to get you to the hospital just as quick as we can.”
Cradling her to my chest, I hustled to the curb just as Frank came screeching up. AJ opened the door for me, and I eased Abby onto the seat. She shrieked and clawed at my chest from the pain. Tears stung my eyes as I murmured “I’m so, so sorry,” over and over again. Once I was seated and had pulled her back onto my lap, she just whimpered, rather than cried hard.
LL hopped up front with Frank while AJ slid in beside me. As I held Abby to my chest, I watched her eyes close. “Try to stay awake. Don’t go to sleep.” I didn’t have any medical training, but I knew from how damaged her head was that she probably had a concussion.
But no matter how hard I tried to keep her awake, the pain must’ve been too intense, and she passed out. We screeched up to the ER at Piedmont Hospital on two wheels. How Frank got out so fast I don’t know, but he was there to open the door for me. When we busted through the ER doors, every person in the waiting room turned to stare at us.
It took all of five seconds before someone shrieked, “Oh my God! That’s Jake Slater!”
“And AJ Resendiz too!”
Ignoring them I hustled up to the front desk where an ER clerk stared wide-eyed at me. “My girlfriend has been beaten pretty badly, and she needs medical attention.” When she momentarily hesitated, I shouted, “Right now, did you hear me?”
The automatic “Authorized Personnel Only” doors buzzed open, and I rushed through them. Two nurses came forward to usher me into a room. Once I deposited Abby onto the gurney, they pushed me to the door. “No wait, I want to stay with her!”
“I’m sorry, sir, but—”
I jerked my hand through my hair as tears of frustration scorched my eyes. “You don’t understand. I love Abby, dammit! There are only two women in the entire world I love, and one is already dying. I can’t lose Abby too!” I cried.
“I’m so very sorry, but it’s against hospital policy to have friends or family members back here while we assess a patient’s condition.”
My fists clenched at my side as I shouted, “Yeah, well, f**k your precious policy!”