Week 241 – He rushed to his room locking the door behind him

Well at least now she knew why Adam had haunted eyes. He was retired from the military, his nightmares were no doubt related to that. She might not know anything about fighting wars but she knew all about nightmares.

Including those you couldn’t escape because they were just your life.

“You wouldn’t have hurt me if you hadn’t been asleep,” she reminded him.

“You have no idea what I’m capable of,” he growled, his voice hard, his expression even harder.

She gave him a sad smile. She might not know what he was capable of but the way he was beating himself up for attacking her in his sleep was a bit of a giveaway that he didn’t go around strangling women.

“Stay away from me, Zara,” he said, then he rushed to his room locking the door behind him.

Zara sighed, it was clear he didn’t want her help but that was just too bad. She was here, for the next year, and it was obvious he needed someone, why shouldn’t she see if she could help him?

She shuffled over to his door and rested her back against it, absently she traced her fingers over the bruises on her neck. They weren’t the first given to her by a man.

“I know you think you’re a bad guy, Adam, but you’re not. Bad guys don’t care when they hurt people. Trust me, I know.”

Even though she couldn’t see him she could sense that he was listening to her and she smiled. Her family had never understood why she hated her dad for what he’d done to her, her mom, and her sister. They made excuses for him, he didn’t mean to hit them, he lost his temper, it was really all their own fault anyway, it wasn’t very often. She’d never made those excuses, and it had ostracised her in her family.

“My dad used to hit us. He liked to do it where no one could see, chest, back, stomach, those were his favourites. He never apologised, never felt bad, he never would have gone running into a room and locked the door to try to keep us safe. You’re not that kind of man, Adam.”

She could hear him moving in there and a moment later she tumbled backwards as the door was opened.

“I’m sorry, Zara,” Adam said as he reached down, took her hand, and helped her up. “I keep hurting you.”

“Its no big deal, Adam,” she assured him.

“You’re not the first person I’ve hurt,” he admitted. Pain swirling in the blue depths of his eyes and she ached to be able to ease his hurt, even just a little. His gaze was dark, dangerous, and yet she didn’t fear him. She felt his goodness even if he didn’t.

“I’m sure whatever you did it wasn’t on purpose.”

He crowded closer, towering over her. “You want to know what I did?” he growled. “You think you can handle it? That knowing the monster I am won’t change anything. Make no mistake about it, Zara, I am a monster. I killed my wife and daughter.”

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