Judge

By: Alexa Riley


“He’s a liar,” I say as I straighten up in my chair and smooth out my dress.

“Most lawyers are.” He gives a shrug. I have to bite my lip to keep from laughing. “That said, you’ve been caught trespassing, among other things. Not to mention you’ve missed school. It’s my understanding that’s required if you want to stay in line with your inheritance.”

“Yeah,” I mumble. I feel bad, but not because of the money. It’s about not finishing something my father wanted me to. He’s gone and it’s the last thing he asked of me.

He puts both hands on his desk and leans forward, calling my attention without words. He has no idea that I can’t possibly look away from him even if I wanted to. It’s been that way since the first time I spotted him.

“This is how things are going to go.”





Chapter Four





Nora





I sit in class not listening to a thing the teacher is saying. My mind is still on Smith. I’m not sure I care for him, so I’m going back to thinking of him as a man in a suit and nothing more. Even if my body loves him and begged me all night to leave the soft comfy bed he’d left me in to join him in his.

The naughty thoughts have taken over and are running wild. Pandora’s box has been opened and he’s the one who lifted the lid. I fear it might never close and I’ll forever be stuck on the edge of a need I can’t ever fulfil.

Smith was cold and it isn’t how I thought the suited man would be when I daydreamed about him. I watched him come and go from the gym each day and in my mind he was sweet. I can’t read him now and I don’t know what he wants. One moment I think he wants me as his own personal plaything and the next he’s treating me like a concerned parent. He told me I had to get my life together and he put me back in school. He also gave me a job.

I’m working off the money I owe the gym for the items I’d taken by helping him when I’m not in school. Today I have to clean his office. I’d make a run for it if it wasn’t for the bracelet wrapped around my ankle. Luckily I have a pair of jeans I can wear to cover it. I didn’t want to explain that thing to the kids at my school who were already looking at me curiously because I’ve been missing for two weeks. I’m surprised they even noticed and I ignore their stares the best I can.

When he took me home with him yesterday I was shocked. I don’t know what I was expecting, maybe a place like my uncle’s or even my dad's. It was nothing like what I thought it would be. His home was warm and welcoming and it looked like a family belonged there. I paused for a moment when he started to usher me inside, thinking when I entered I might actually see his family. It never occurred to me that he could have a wife and a couple of kids. Thankfully there wasn’t anyone else.

Everything about him keeps surprising me. It’s refreshing and scary all at the same time. I want to know more about him and what he’s doing with me. He could have handed me over to the cops, but he didn’t. He isn’t only the judge now, he’s also the jury and executioner.

“You know your uncle was looking for you a few weeks back.” My head jerks up at the mention of my uncle. I look over at the boy sitting next to me. I think his name is Paul. Pretty sure it’s followed with a ridiculously double-barelled name with him being the twentieth in line for something.

“I don’t live with him anymore,” I tell him. “Was he mad?” Crap. Would the school have told him about me being back here? I’m not sure. Smith walked me into the building and pushed me down the hallway towards my class as he went into the office. I’m sure word would get to him at some point. What that means for me I’m not sure, but I’m not going anywhere with this thing on my ankle.

“He thought you took off with a boyfriend. He wanted to know who you talked to around here,” he responds leaning in closer to me. “You never talk to anyone.”

I shrug because it’s true. I’m the new girl in my last year of high school. No one went out of their way to say hi to me so I didn’t try. When I first got here I was still a little shell-shocked by the changes in my life and I guess I never went beyond it after I got comfortable.

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