Belonging to Lust

Chapter 91: Hooked

The following morning on a gray Sunday morning, Heath woke up in his bed with the feeling of dread that had sat overnight in his stomach to greet him the next day. He exhaled loudly as the memories of last night broke through to the forefront of his mind and assault him with the recollection of catching Zaiyia sneaking back into the house after he took off on a late-night job in the city. He hadn’t believed she would do something like that to him when he returned home and couldn’t locate her but was proven wrong when he had taken a seat in the darkness of his living room to catch her sneaking into the house with his own eyes.

Zaiyia wasn’t a troublesome teenager, at least she hadn’t been in the beginning, but as time passed with her living with him beneath his roof, he began to see another side of her…a more self-destructive side. His heart had fallen when her dark form illuminated by the tiny lights built along the sidewalks crept into his home and was immediately replaced with a ball of fiery rage he hadn’t ever felt before even when his own younger siblings were caught by him in the act of sneaking on and off the property at night. Before he could rein control of himself, he stood up and began shouting at her, and ultimately made her cry.

He hated making her cry.

After the night closed with him carrying her down the hall to this very bedroom…wait, he did what?
Heath’s glanced over his shoulder in surprise to lock eyes with Zaiyia Halifax. She was sitting up on what was considered for now her side of the bed with her knees drawn up to her chest and her arms wrapped around them. By how closely she was staring at him with tears in her beautiful brown eyes and that look of despair on her face, Heath had to guess she’d been awake for quite some time. But it was the tears that had his body turning on his left side instead and propping himself onto his elbow in a movement of quick alarm that his tired face twisted in concern and his mind filled solely with concern for her. “Zaiyia…” Reaching out a hand, he tenderly reached out and touched her knee with light fingertips. “Baby, what is it? Are you okay?”

Zaiyia clamped her mouth shut by biting her lower lip to keep her words from pouring out due to the warm touch of his hand on her frozen body devoid of a flicker life within it. It had already took everything in her to come to terms with a lot of things while watching him sleep and now that he was awake it was time to give him her heart wrenching speech. Last night this man had been there for her after a very traumatizing time at the same party she snuck off to where a drunk Alan had almost gone too far with her if it hadn’t been for her friends, but while Heath also been her beacon of safety, he’s also been her despair. Which was why she had to find the strength within herself to currently move her knee out from beneath his touch when all she really wanted to do was to throw herself into his arms and hear him confess his love for her…his nonexistent love for her, that is. Feeling like she was about to pull the trigger of a gun held at her head, Zaiyia withdrew her knees from beneath his fingers before speaking. “I’m okay…but…I have something I-I need to say to you. I-It can’t wait.”

Feeling his heart drop to his stomach, Heath was aware this wasn’t going to be good. Erasing the wounded look from his eyes when she withdrew from his touch, he forced the green orbs to remain on hers as he watched her. He was reluctant to ask about it, but he knew he had to know. “What is it?”

“I uh…” Zaiyia couldn’t look at him anymore and dropped her eyes to her knees. She sighed deeply, closing her eyes for a second to compose her nerves before continuing on. “I know romantically being around guys my age is against one of your many rules or whatever, b-but I’ve been t-thinking about us and…well, I-I think it’d be best i-if I started dating…specifically w-with guys my…age.”

Heath was right when he believed this wouldn’t be good, but he hadn’t expected to feel his heart shattering in his chest. He had flinched in response to the pain of her confession and had to look away from her to take several deep breaths. A choking lump in his throat was forming and was cutting of his airway, making it feel difficult to breath. Still, he managed to at least appear collected even though his voice came out in a low whisper. He didn’t trust it to remain steady if he raised it any higher that that. “Why…why would you think of doing something like that? I mean…you ca-”

Not wanting to hear him argue against her case, Zaiyia caught him off passionately, her voice strong and rocky but still filled with empathy. Her eyes locked bitterly on his but were filled with tears of grief. Her hands gripped her forearms in a painful lock as her heart pounded in her ears. “YES! I must. Don’t you fucking get it, Heath? I’m fucking HOOKED on you!” She confessed in an outcry that she saw shook him too. She fought the tears from falling but lost as they spilled down her cheeks while she shook her head in torment. “And I’m fairly fucking certain that it won’t ever stop unless…I-I can find someone else that…can reciprocate those feelings too instead of always…r-rejecting me.”

Wanting to wrap her into his arms and chase her misery away, Heath’s only escape was to avert his eyes from her and turn himself away to plant his feet on his cold hardwood floor. His back was to hers as he fought to calm himself down, his torso rising and falling with his aggressive driven pants. His hands grip the edges of his mattress at his sides as his jaw hardened. He was genuinely getting pissed off and didn’t know what he could to make it go away other than to destroy something with his own bare hands. When he finally trusted himself to speak again, he said. “Is that so?”

Zaiyia’s body was trembling with agony, tears spilling from her eyes and down her cheeks despite them shut tight. “I-It is…”

“And you think that’ll save you?” Heath growled over his shoulder at her.

“I have to try.” Zaiyia whispered out to him weakly.

Heath went silent then, not peeping even the smallest of sounds.

“Look, Heath…you won’t EVER be in a romantic relationship with me for reasons that I totally understand!” Zaiyia expressed, furiously wiping her tears from her eyes. “But despite that I’m clearly the only one still hung up on this chemistry shit that’s going on between us. I’ve tried letting time fix this fuckery but it’s taking too damn long for my impatient ass to wait any longer, so I need a solution now and to me…the only one I can think of is to move on with someone else.”

There was only guy that came to mind that could be the ‘perfect’ little jerk she was seeking to replace him. Seething with rage, Heath snarled the dead kid's name. “Alan.”

Zaiyia’s body flinched at the reminder of that lovestruck kid that tried to take advantage of her at the party last night he invited her to. After what happened between them, she’d sooner run his behind over with a car than let him touch her again. With a shudder of disgust, Zaiyia shook her head to herself to dismiss the idea. “Hell-to-the-no when it comes to that asshole! It’ll never be Alan! Rather it’ll be…I don't know, someone else.”

Heath felt defeated. What could he say at this point? 'No, stay with me, I’m the only man you’d ever need?' No way! He was 34 years old and she was 16! There was no way the law would ever allow such a match to ever be. Zaiyia was doing the right thing by him by moving on with someone else and logically her argument made sense that it might help her move on for him because she clearly hadn’t…and yet why did it hurt so damn bad? And why did he want to abuse his guardian powers to demand her to abandon this newfound mission of hers to erase him? “…okay…do what you have to do…”

“O-Okay?” Zaiyia repeated in awe, surprised that it sounded like he was agreeing to her plan. She honestly didn’t know if he would or not when she first came up with the idea but here they were. “As in…you’re agreeing to this?”

“Whoever that little shit turns out to be, I don’t want to see him ANYWHERE near my house, my property or this goddamn cul-de-sac!” Heath spat in a rage, his back still to her as he glared holes into his wall. “I don’t want him mentioned around me, or better yet, mention anywhere underneath my roof! I want to know nothing that this little prick, do you hear me, and I fucking mean NOTHING!”

“Y-Yeah, sure. Okay.” Zaiyia agreed absentmindedly, still stuck in awe but now also heartbreak that he was actually agreeing to this. He was accepting her to move on with someone else that wasn’t him. It pissed her off, killed her, and shocked her all at the same time. She had no idea which emotion to react on and so she chose to avoid them all and dance around them to hurry up and just end this conversation. “So…do you um…do you want some breakfast?”

Heath shook his head mutely before whispering to her. “No, I…I think I’m gonna sleep in a little longer today.”

Silently nodded in response, Zaiyia tentatively got up from her side of the bed and headed for his bedroom door, all the while resisting the urge to catch a lingering glimpse of him. She had already opened the door and was halfway out when he out called to her.


She quickly retreated back into his room, her brown shimmery eyes wide with hope that he had changed his mind suddenly and was ready to accept her back into his arms, his bed and beneath his body permanently. But that unfortunately wasn’t the case.

Heath looked her right in the eye, his face slack and devoid of any emotions other than exhaustion. “The next lucky bastard that comes around that you call boyfriend…make sure he’s good for you, and I mean REALLY good for you! Don’t you ever spend a second settling for less in this life from any man. I can tell from my time with you that you deserve the world and nothing but the world and all it has to give”

Zaiyia fought the tears threatening to fall again from her eyes. She swallowed hard as she realized that she had already had the world in her time spent with Heath and that she’d always be settling for less if she moved on with any man but him. But she wasn’t going to say that. This was already too difficult to do for herself and she didn’t wish to make it any harder on him. She gave him a shaky nod. “Okay…”

Nodding himself, he gestured with a hand to the light switch by the door. “Can you turn off the light before you go? I’m too tired to get up and do it myself.” He watched her flip her hand over the device before giving him her goodbyes and closing the door behind her. Now surrounded in darkness, Heath lowered his miserable corpse back into bed. In his heart, body, mind and soul he knew he didn’t want to give her up to anything or anyone. She was his in his eyes. But at the same time he knew it was the right thing to do.