Belonging to Lust

Chapter 112: Ice Cream

Unlike most parents that remove their combative children from school to ground them into their rooms after getting into multiple fights, Heath took Zaiyia to a small ice cream parlor in a downtown plaza. It was an adorable cool place built into a long stretch of buildings linked together. Painted in an array of soft rainbow pastels and white, it definitely melted some tension of Zaiyia's shoulders when she walked in, suspiciously looking around. “Um...why are we here?”

“Ice cream.” Heath answered, leading her towards the long line of cases containing variations of sweet unhealthy ice cream. “You look like you need it. You doing okay?”

Not understanding his logic in wanting to treat her with such delicacy after getting in a fight once again, Zaiyia decided to dismiss the mystery until she at least got herself something cold and creamy to perk up her mood. “I'm good, even better now that I'm gonna get some ice cream.”

“That's my girl.” Heath chuckled when she came to stand beside him. Reaching out, he draped a loose heavy arm around her shoulder. “Pick your poison.”

In a flash, one of the people working behind the counter finished with their departing customer to slide on over to fulfill the couple's order. It didn't help that the employees were smitten by Heath and would throw in a light flirt here and there during it, making Zaiyia roll her eyes and sigh aloud so they could see how much it annoyed her. Occasionally, she's look over at the young girl curiously, probably wondering why Heath wasn't going to order her to keep her mouth shut and be respectful towards them. When they finally received their ice cream, they walked over to a small table sitting by itself from the others to left of the parlor. “Fucking finally! They're are so many damn thirsting hoes up in this goddamn town.”

Chuckling to himself again, Heath pulled out Zaiyia's chair for her first before seating himself next to her but making sure they had a safe distance from each other. He dug his spoon into his cup to load it up with the cool treat of Praline N Cream, his mind ready to wander back to the meeting they just left at her school with Principal Quinn. “So, are you ready to pack up and switch to a different school yet or do you need one of these kids to flatten you with a bulldozer to change your mind?”

Zaiyia shot him a reproachful look, ignoring the second part of his question as she slipped some Oreo ice cream past her full lips to melt on her tongue. “Hell no, am I going anywhere! Unlike you, I have faith in our good Principal Quinn to make things right.”

“You seriously believe he's got you covered against the majority of the school?” Heath doubted, raising a brow as he moved the melting ice cream around in his mouth.

“Don't you?” Zaiyia asked him curiously. “You seemed to think so too before we left.”

“I did, didn't I?” Heath smiled to himself, dropping his green eyes to the table top to avoid watching the tiny spoon slide between her full lips. He felt those lips before and even though the memory felt distant, it could inflame his body with a hot need her own mother never could achieve.

Nudging his elbow, Zaiyia changed the subject. “Hey, do the cops have any lead on who threw a rock through our living room window that one night?”

“No, not yet.” Heath answered with a shake of his head, licking his lips of the residue of sweetness. His eyes hardened a bit at the reminder of the vandalizers that got away from damaging his property. “But they strongly feel the culprit are a bunch of rebellious kids.”

Zaiyia's brows both raised in surprised that they were that accurate. “So, now what?”

“They'll still work on it, I guess.” Heath ended that discussion with a shrug before casting a investigative eye her way. “Do you know who could've done it?”

Lying, Zaiyia shook her head, her stomach heavy with guilt. “Not a damn clue, unfortunately.”

Believing her, Heath nodded and returned to his ice cream. “Yeah.”

The bell above the Ice Cream Parlor's door rung as some more customers entered the joint. Zaiyia looked up just in time to gawk at Alice White herself flanked by her girlfriends with a hand linked with two of her younger siblings. Zaiyia's stomach dropped as she stared with wide eyes at her nemesis, receiving the same treatment back at her. No one dared to move or make a scene in the adorable establishment, but the shock at seeing her in person again out and about for the first time quickly burned with her rising anger. Just like that, her brown eyes erupted into lava as they narrowed into a glare.

Feeling like the temperature suddenly gotten hotter in the Ice Cream Parlor, Heath lifted his eyes to study Zaiyia's rigid form. “What's is it, Zaiyia?” Not waiting for an answer, he followed her gaze to a couple of girls taking a seat at the booth by the front door. Narrowing his eyes suspiciously, he spoke to Zaiyia. “Who are they? What's going on?”

Not meaning for Heath to have seen her upset, Zaiyia flitted her eyes away from the group of haters to glare at what was left of her ice cream. “N-Nothing, it's just...” Sighing deeply, she admitted the truth. “That's Alice White over there, the bitch that started all of this.”

“Alice White?” Heath muttered to himself as he inspected the lightest blonde among the young ladies who were constantly shooting glares at Zaiyia when they thought he wasn't looking. That name sounded familiar to him for a whole other reason other than being Zaiyia's bullies.

“Yeaaah, Alice White.” Zaiyia confirmed, her eyes studying his face. “Heath, do you know her?”

Heath shook his head, knowing he'd never personally met the young lady before. “No, but I know her father.”

Zaiyia leaned over the table to hiss. “Are you serious? You know her dad?”

“Yeah, her father is the stereotypical town drunk since his wife left him with the kids.” Heath revealed, finishing the last of his ice cream and pushing the empty cup aside.

“Typical town drunk?” Zaiyia mumbled to herself, tapping her chin thoughtfully with a finger. “ isn't safe to say that Mr. White is possibly...a good man?”

“Sure, when he's not drinking.” Heath propped his elbows on the table and linked his fingers together. He watched as Zaiyia went silent to turn her head towards Alice and continue the glare war they begun. Giving her a couple of minutes to do that, Heath soon grew tired of it. “Alright, Zaiyia, that's enough.”

Too distracted with glaring to hear him, Zaiyia barely replied back with an answer. “Huh?”

Getting up from the table, Heath had every woman's dreamy attention in the parlor busying himself with throwing out their ice cream cups, spoons and napkins. When he returned to the table, he seized Zaiyia's hand and tugged her out of her chair. “I said, that's enough.”

Understanding what he said before now, Zaiyia reluctantly gave him an obedient nod. “Fine.”

“Good girl.” Towing her along behind him to the front door, Heath managed to sneak a glance at Alice to see she that she was still glaring the hell out of his Zaiyia. Glancing over his shoulder, he was proud that his girl was ignoring her like he told her to. Still, he wanted to give this Alice a piece of his own mind, and so he stopped in his trail and shouted over at her. “HEY!”

Alice nearly leap through the ceiling at his thundering voice breaking her concentration on Zaiyia who was curious as to what he was up to. Her innocent eyes widened in fear as the large handsome man with her enemy glared intensely at her, making her cheek flush with his perfect features.

Pointing a finger at her, he left her with a single warning from him. “Knock it off, you hear me?”

Not daring to challenge him because the man was big enough to knock her head clear off her shoulders, Alice dropped her eyes obediently to the table top, and kept them there, unable to spot Zaiyia's triumphant grin.

“Good girl.” Heath complimented as he left the parlor with Zaiyia's hand clasped protectively in his.