Redemption:Slick Rock 18(4)By: Becca Van
“The men in this town are vigilant and will never hesitate to step up to the plate if they see an injustice being done or someone being hurt. They’d never dump a woman just because things got a little hard, and they would never, ever lift a hand to hurt a woman or child.”
“You can’t know that for certain. You can’t possibly know all the men in this town.”
Phoenix didn’t realize he was leaning toward the window until he almost toppled from his stool while straining his ears so he could hear everything Enya said. She was talking so quietly she was nearly whispering.
“No, you’re right, but the other men would step in if they saw someone getting hurt. In fact, they’d interfere if they saw a man yelling at a woman or child.”
“That’s ludicrous. Everyone yells now and again.”
Katie huffed out a breath. “You know what I mean, Enya. They’d observe and if things looked as if they were getting out of hand, the men in this town would put themselves in the line of fire. They’d give their lives without a qualm to keep you, me or anyone else in need of help safe if necessary.”
“Whatever,” Enya said, but it was her tone of voice that had Phoenix sighing with frustration and not the word she’d said. Enya sounded as if she didn’t believe a word Katie had just spoken.
Katie sighed with exasperation. “You don’t have to believe me, but surely after you’ve seen what Delta and Violet went through and how their men and the other males banded together to keep them safe, you can’t deny it. You’re lying to yourself if you do.”
Phoenix straightened on his stool, grabbed his coffee mug and took a sip, hoping he looked calm, when inside his gut was roiling. Katie came back into the diner, glanced his way and then picked up one of the freshly brewed pots of coffee and headed over to him.
“Do you want more?” she asked.
“Please.” Phoenix set his mug down.
Katie leaned closer and whispered to him. “Did you hear?”
He nodded and gave her a small smile of thanks.
“I don’t know why she’s scared of the opposite sex, but she is.”
“Do you know anything about her?”
“Not much. She doesn’t talk about herself at all. The only time I’ve ever heard her speak more than a word or two was when she was trying to convince Violet to give her men a chance.”
Phoenix frowned and rubbed the back of his neck. That was a contradiction to what he believed and had just heard. He just hoped that having Enya encouraging one of her business partners to take a chance on love boded well for him, Axel and Camden.
He was more determined than ever to get what he wanted.
Nonetheless, they were going to have to be tolerant and keep their heads on straight because Phoenix had a feeling if they lost their cool or got impatient, they would lose their chance at courting the woman of their dreams.
* * * *
Enya finished up and headed out after Delta came in for her shift. She was so tired every muscle and bone in her body was aching. Sometimes she wished she could just fall into bed and sleep for days on end, but that was a luxury that wasn’t going to happen.
Even when she was lucky enough to get a couple of hours of nap time, those horrible subconscious memories always disturbed her rest. But the nightmares weren’t the only reason for her broken sleep. If she didn’t wake up covered in sweat and gasping for breath, she woke up because of the terrible need that set her body to throbbing.
While she’d kept to herself and never had a relationship, she knew what that deep-seated aching throb was. Lust. Pure and simple, but she wasn’t about to acknowledge her needs. As far as she was concerned, to do so was dangerous.
The hair on the back of her neck stood on end, but after a quick glance around she pushed her paranoia aside. Since the incident with Delta, Enya felt as if she was being watched, but she’d never seen anyone taking any particular notice of her.
She was thankful that she didn’t have to worry about some asshole following her to town like Delta and Violet had. Enya was lucky because the fuckers that caused all those nightly terrors were locked six feet under. She had nothing to worry about.