So I am still pinned down by Jackson as Mr. Payne storms into the room. Before Jackson can do anything Henrik is lifting him up by his belt loop and tossing him aside into the coffee table. As fast as I can I scoot off the couch and into the doorway to notice two very large men, John from earlier and the man I saw at the bottom of the stairs, barrel down the hall.
It all happens so fast. I watch as the two men pull Mr. Payne off Jackson and give him a punch in the face and stomach before dragging him away. Glancing back I see Jackson curled up in a ball so I yell at him from the doorway.
“I told you no means no, but you didn't listen did you.”
Then I dash down the hall in the direction that Henrik and the two men took, for fear Jackson might get back up. I make it to the bar when I see Aria. She is waving me over and pushing my coat and purse at me.
“Oh god, Morgana are you okay?”
“Yeah Aria, just a little shook up. Thanks for trying to set me up with a rapist by the way!”
She flinches at my sarcastic line.
“I had no idea. When he dragged you off like that I got nervous and talked to Kelly one of the waitresses here and she told me he has a habit of taking what he wants not matter what. God, I have worked here for a year how did I not know that?” She nervously looks at her hands as if they hold the answer before continuing, “Anyway, I grabbed your phone and found Mr. Payne’s number. I would have called your father or brother but they live too far away.”
“Fuck. I can’t believe he came. He hates me. I better go and see if he’s alright. Thanks for calling someone Aria.”
She gives me a sad smile and nods as I walk out the door. I notice Henrik on the curb lying on his side. I scurry over to help him up. Noticing he has no coat I quickly take off my scarf and sit beside him on the sidewalk to wrap him in the little scrap of warmth I can offer. I wonder where his coat is as he just has a cashmere sweater keeping him warm against the bitter winter cold of Chicago.
I hold him for a while until I feel him relax a bit.
“Let me help you to your car and I will drive you to the hospital.”
“No I don’t need a hospital. Just some bruises and cuts, they’ll heal. I didn't bring a car, just ran here.”
I look around and realize we are at least fifteen blocks away from his neighborhood. While that is a short drive it would be at least a ten minute run. Perhaps he is used to running but I can’t imagine without a coat in this weather?
“Let me grab a taxi.”
I hail one down in no time as they swarm the bars at night waiting for a drunken fare. When we get inside I place his head in my lap and ask him his address again as I don’t remember it off hand. He just moans in response so I finally give the driver my address.
After paying the cab I get him out and do my best to open the door and that’s when I smell it. He’s been drinking. For a man who has rules and does not drink (except the holiday party – which still makes no sense to me) I seem to catch him quite often drunk. The driver must have noticed my struggle because he helps me into my building all the way to my apartment. We make it to my bedroom and place him on my bed. I give the driver and extra ten for the help.
“Did he hurt you?”
Henrik mumbles to me as I walk back into the bedroom from seeing the driver out.
“No. Thank you for coming to help. I am quite surprised you did.”
He is curled up on his side as I make my way to face him. Henrik smiles and looks up at me while squinting.
“I’m surprised too but as much as I never wanted to see you again I couldn't let anyone hurt you. In fact, if those two guys had not of shown up I would probably be facing murder charges right now.”
“But if you did that it would just make it easier for me to take your job?” I joke but he’s not laughing. His smile disappears and he turns his gaze onto my clock.
“It was a joke Henrik. Not a very good one but still a joke. I don’t want your job...well not if I have to hurt you to get it.”
His eyes snap back to my face and he wince’s as he adjusts his position.
“But you admitted that you knew Bechmann was showing up so you could get me in trouble.”
I just stare at him and roll my eyes. I’m no martyr so I can’t take him hating me. If he is mad that is one thing, but hate is too strong even for me. I shake my head and walk into my bathroom to retrieve the first aid kit. Once I return I get down on my knees in front of him and try to lift his sweater to see where he is hurt, but his arm grabs my wrist.
“Why did you lie to us or did you Morgana?”
I sigh and turn my head to face him. He’s confused and I’m a liar. I lied to Evaleen and I lied to Henrik. As much as I don’t want Henrik to lose his job I don’t like to lie. It is unsettling.
“So you wouldn't lose your job Henrik. As much as I want to get into the Executive Development Program, and believe me I want it almost as much as I want cake. If you lost your job with the company it would not just hurt you but also the people at Mimir. Even if they hired a great executive to take your place I honestly don’t think that person could ever do as good of a job as you. Mimir is like family to you and it would be their loss if you went away. If I got fired, well...it may be a nuisance for you to have to find another assistant but the company would be fine without me. If anyone has to leave, it’s best for the company if I leave.”
Henrik remains quiet for a minute staring at me. I try to raise his shirt again but his hand continues to push it away. Finally, he begins to sit up so I help him until he is standing.
“Give me the first aid kit. I’ll do it myself.”
“Henrik, seriously stop being a baby and just let me take care of you.”
He holds out his hand as if he didn't hear me so I groan and begrudgingly give him the kit. Henrik walks into my bathroom and shuts the door. I head out into the kitchen and put the kettle on to make us some tea. I am mainly a coffee drinker, but there is a special tea that my father would drink when he came back from hard training or a mission. My dad is an ex-Navy Seal. Once my dad learned about what Trevor did to me I never heard from Trevor again. My dad swears he didn’t make Trevor disappear. He tells me, “I’m not in the Mafia, Morgana.” And then he just chuckles and mumbles something under his breath. I really hope he didn’t kill Trevor.
Anyway, the tea is supposed to help with aching muscles. So, carrying the cups into the bedroom while they are seeping I wait for Henrik to emerge. I never took him for being shy about his appearance, but people surprise me all the time.
Henrik comes out and stands in front of me, his eyes burning into me. Something in me aches as I gaze up into his darkening eyes.
“I made some tea. It will help with the pain.” My words tumble out of my mouth a little too fast. His head turns to the cups and then back to me. I swallow trying to suppress a moan. Henrik bends and winces while picking up the tea bringing it to his lips as he sips. His face scrunches as he squeezes his lips together.
“Ugg, that’s awful. Are you trying to kill me Ms. Drake?”
I bring up my fingers, pinching the air.
“Just a little Mr. Payne.”
He chuckles and then grabs his side in pain.
“Here come lay down and I vow not to make you laugh, but I can’t promise anything about poison.”
His eyebrow lifts as his lips crease into a smile. Henrik puts down the cup and crawls onto the bed to lay in the middle. I get up and get a few things from my dresser then turn to him as I make my way to the door.
“I’ll sleep out on the couch if you need me. I know the tea tastes bad but it really will make you feel better by morning so try and drink it.”
“Stay with me tonight.”
Find out what happens next in THE Big Movie
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Payne Posts Menu
63. THE Insane
62. THE Bechmann
61. THE Morning After
60. THE Attack
59. THE Decision
58. THE Emergency
57. THE Welcome Home
56. THE First Day Back
55. THE Strange
54. THE Question
53. THE Crazy B
52. THE Teacher
51. THE Discussion
50. THE Mommy
49. THE Bar Fly
48. THE Watchful Eye
47. THE Big Guns
46. THE Never
45. THE Feast
44. THE Bathroom Threesome
43. THE Pee Pee
42. THE Fine
41. THE Shirt Attack
40. THE Police Song
39. THE Discovery
38. THE Pull
37. THE Aria Show
36. THE Switch Up
35. THE Delivery
34. THE Scheme
33. THE Drink
32. THE Uncomfortable Silence
31. THE Online Experience
30. THE Same Old Shi
29. THE Talk
28. THE Drunk Dial
27. THE Birthday
26. THE Meeting
25. THE New Job
24. THE Disagreement
23. THE Big Movie
22. THE Sleepover
21. THE Club
20. THE Leave
19. THE Beggar
18. THE Confrontation
17. THE Jackoff
16. THE Bathroom
15. THE Joint
14. THE Let Down
13. THE Truce
12. THE Phone Call
11. THE Assistant
10. THE New Year
9. THE Payneful Reminder
8. THE Holiday Party
7. THE Zipper Incident
6. THE Cake
5. THE Incident
4. THE Paperwork
3. THE Letter
2. THE After Effects
1. THE Interview