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Tarnished - Chapter 42

Continued... Joe doesn't give up... Has Korbin? Are they literally two boys fighting for the same girl? Is Viola so caught up in her pain that she misses the signs?
I stared from Joe to Korbin as I stood in-between them. Both of them squaring their shoulders and taking some steps towards each other.

Joe kept his voice calm, but his eyes declared a misty intent. "I was just about to drive Viola to the garage and then to her mum's flower shop."

Korbin smiled slightly, chuckling to himself. "Oh dear."

"Why ‘oh dear’?" Joe began getting irritated by Korbin’s cockiness.

Korbin responded by turning his attention to me. He walked to stand by my side and then leaned closer, so his lips were near my face. I tried to edge away slowly as he spoke. "I think you must have drunk too much this weekend, when you stayed with your... ‘Friends’." His eyes flashed with a fake innocence as Joe huffed and puffed on the other side of me. "You’ve forgotten what you promised me before you left, haven’t you?"

I blinked frantically. Promise? What promise?! "I didn’t promise you anything!" I hissed with some lengthy vigor.

Korbin chuckled once again, keeping up his innocence. "You promised me that you would let me drive you today." He winked at Joe sarcastically.

Joe responded by gritting his teeth. "Stop fooling around Korbin..."

I cut in, not wanting Joe to get involved. "Look Korbin I-"

Korbin sighed; speaking rather loudly in his exasperation. "Or do I need to drag Joseph into this as well?"

My heart raced, that was the last thing I wanted. I didn’t want Joseph being used against me as well!

Korbin turned to Joe. "Do you know something about Viola? She was actually at-"

I cut in once again. "Stop it!" I was breathing heavy and after seeing Joe engrossed in whatever Korbin was about to tell him, I knew what I had to do.

Korbin, obviously recognizing the defeat on my face, reached into his pocket and put his ray bans on. "I’ll wait in my car." He strode coolly over to his Merc, and leaned on the door, observing me and Joe.

I avoided looking at my colleague, who was still standing there helplessly.

"Look, Viola... I don’t get why you have to listen to him." Joe took a step closer, whispering frantically. "You don’t have to do what he says."

I closed my eyes and shook my head. "You don’t understand honey."

"I do understand! He’s doing something to you; I just don’t know what. You don’t have to follow him; you don’t have to do what he says! You know you don’t!" Joe reached his arm out and touched my face, moving his to face him. "Come on, just get on my bike with me and we’ll talk about this. I’ll take you somewhere you can get away for a few hours?"

"Hurry up." Korbin called, impatiently.

I looked into Joe’s pleading eyes, and I’m pretty sure my eyes pleaded back. I ignored Korbin. I knew I couldn’t accept Joe’s offer... For his own safety. Korbin had hurt me already... I did not want him hurting more people. "I’m really sorry Joe." I raised my hand to his, which was still holding my chin up. I stroked it before pushing it away. "I did promise Korbin, I have to go." Without giving him another glimpse, I tried walking around him, but Joe caught my arm, softly.

"Please, don’t do this. Don’t go with him." He urged, hurt evident in his voice.

"I’m really sorry." I whispered back, but then tore my arm away and walked over to Korbin, who then opened the passenger side door of his Merc for me, and shut it behind me as I crawled into the seat.

My head down; I put my seat belt on. I couldn’t look at Joseph anymore... I could sense his hurt. I didn’t want to see it.

Korbin sat in the driver’s seat and turned the ignition on. Before long, we had sped off down the driveway, only to be silent the whole journey. I didn’t know what to say. Part of me considered whether I should just grab the wheel and veer us off to the nearest lamp post... But I knew I could never take somebody else’s life... Maybe my own.

My mind focused as we sped past the garage where my car was. I turned to Korbin in anger. "That was the garage! That’s where I wanted to go!" Then it dawned on me... What if he was taking me back to the beach house? "KORBIN! STOP THE CAR!"

I nearly lurched for the steering wheel when he turned to me and raised his eyebrow. "You don’t need your car, especially with that ankle. I’m just going to drive you to your mother’s flower shop. Pipe down."

I blinked at him. Was he serious? Was he actually taking me directly to my mum’s shop?

I debated with myself for the rest of the journey, until Korbin came to a stop outside the grand white building that was my mother’s florist empire.

He turned the engine off and began removing his sunglasses while I quickly undid my seat belt, and grabbed my handbag. My hand reached the door handle just as his hands reached over and grabbed my hand.

"Wait, don’t go yet." He spoke lazily. "Why are you always in such a hurry?"

I ignored his question. "What do you want?" I asked rudely.

He was taken aback by my sternness and creased his eyebrows. "When you talk to me, can’t you talk nicely?" He sighed. "When you talk to Joe you’re all sweet and caring!"

"I have a double standard!" I shot back with vengeance. "I’m nice to people who are nice to me. I’m horrible to people who are horrible to me!"

He grabbed my shoulders and yanked me inches away from his face. "I don’t care... Whether you see me as horrible or nice." His mouth was grave, as his eyes stared intently into mine.

We stayed there for a few moments... Until his lips came forward and nibbled on my cheek. I responded by pushing him off of me. He obviously didn’t appreciate this, and thus I ended up back in his grasp, with my face inches from his.

"You act like you’re a free bird or something!" He scowled. "Like you’re innocent... Like you’ve never been touched." I tried pulling away some more, but he maintained his grasp of my shoulders. "You act like you belong to no one. When you and I both know, you belong to me." He moved one of his hands down my back and pulled me closer. I had my hands attempting to push him away at his neck but he didn’t feel it. I was considering snapping off the gear lever and hitting him around the face with it, but then he continued. "You should remember that. Because, if I see you flirting with Joseph again..." His eyes flashed up and down my body. "I won’t be stopping..." I pushed harder with my hands and tried wriggling my back to free it of his touch. "Don’t make me have to ‘show’ you how much you belong to me."

He threw me back to my side of the car, and left me panting for air. Tears welled in my eyes... I couldn’t speak; I was so lost for words.

"I’ll come pick you up for lunch at 1." He spoke casually; clearly he wasn’t affected by our previous hold at all.

I swallowed hard. "There’s no need. I won’t be eating with you."

Again two hands yanked my shoulders towards him, and his lips found my neck and ears. "But I will eat with you... Are you going to say no again?"

"Get off! Leave me alone!" We were at once in a struggle; he was tugging at my shirt while my hands tried squeezing his wrists to inflict some pain... Enough pain to get him off of me. "Stop it you jerk!" His lips continuously tried to gain access to my neck.

The sound of a door opening was heard. "Ahhhhhh! Look who it iz!"

Korbin let go just as I pushed him away one last time and quickly opened the car door.

A tall man with what appeared to be a chef’s hat was walking down the large stone steps of the shop, as I was scrambling out of Korbin’s car and fixing my Alice band.

"Why! It’z the one and only Violaz!" Clearly this was the Portuguese shop supervisor. He came towards me, with his hand out. "How iz you my dearz?"

I attempted a smile, suddenly relieved that I had been saved from Korbin’s grip. I held my hand out expecting him to shake it.

"Hello therez!" He exclaimed, happily.

"Ola." Luckily, languages were my specialty at times.

"Ahhhh!" He seemed very impressed with my Portuguese and thus proceeded to kiss my hand profusely. I immediately blushed, whilst trying to yank my hand away. I turned back to look at Korbin who was staring, shocked at the sudden emergence of the Portuguese man. "Iz youz speaking... Ahhhhhh... Howz you zay... My language...?"

"Se!" I nodded, politely, smiling at him. "Qual é o seu nome?"

He only seemed to become happier, the more I spoke. "My namez is Fazio!"

"Fazio?" I repeated, unsure if I heard him correctly.

He shook his head, laughing wholeheartedly. "No... It is... Fazio!"

"Fazio...?" I repeated again, unsure now.

"No! Fazio!" His laughter was quieter this time.

"Fa..." I attempted... Again unsure...

"Fa-zio!" He smiled, lovingly.

"Fa-zio..." I tried again only to be told it was wrong again. At this point I was unsure whether it was me or him making the mistake.

"Oh myz dearz!" He exclaimed. "Youz will getz it eventually!"

I nodded, politely.

Fazio then turned his attention onto Korbin who was still sitting in his car. "Ahhhh... Who is thiz?" Fazio’s smile faded as he looked from me to Korbin.

"He’s just my driver." I responded coldly.

"She’s just joking. I’m her-" Korbin tried, but I cut in again.

"Driver." I spoke casually and coldly once more.

"Oh!" Fazio exclaimed once more, happy. "It’z good that youz told me thatz! Otherwize I wouldz have thoughtz... That youz two waz loverzzzzz!" He laughed out loud once more in a flamboyant style.

I laughed with him. It felt good to ridicule Korbin. I halted the laughter and put my hand on Fazio’s shoulder. "Don’t be so silly! That would never be the case!" I turned back to look at Korbin who was sneering silently. "Are you going back to the shop now then?"

Fazio nodded. "Would youz like to comez with me?"

I smiled, nodding back. I turned back to the car and grabbed my handbag. Fazio immediately grabbed the handbag from me. He was such a gentleman.

"It’s alright, I can carry it myself." I smiled at him warmly, trying to reach out for my bag.

He smiled, lovingly. "I knowz youz can carry itz yourzelf! But I won’tz letz youz!" He held the bag far away from my reach.

I smiled at him again and then took one last glimpse at Korbin who had a face of thunder. I didn’t care. I slammed the car door shut behind me.

Fazio jumped at the noise. "Oh!" He giggled. "You are sooooo strongz! Isn’t the door broken nowz?"

I looked back at Korbin moodily. "No. His car is fine." I spoke casually; I didn’t care if I broke the car. It was already spoiled in my opinion by the driver.

Fazio placed his hand around my waist and we began walking up the steps and towards the door. His hand seemed to drop lower and lower... It made me feel extremely uncomfortable, but I didn’t mind as long as Korbin could see. Perhaps this would be good for him. Maybe he’d realize that I didn’t belong to him. Perhaps he’d realize that I was free. Perhaps he’d realize that I had more in my life than just him.

Fazio opened the door for me; I turned to look at Korbin one last time. His face was still crumpled with anger. I smirked at him, flicked my hair and then thanked Fazio as I walked into the shop.

The minute the door was closed behind us, I walked as far away from Fazio as possible. He had a wife, I remembered my mother telling me that on the phone. I didn’t want any more trouble!

All workers rushed around me, they all knew who I was for some reason. I enjoyed their company. It was nice to be in such a jolly atmosphere. While Fazio was in his office, the other workers and I had a debate about what his name was. According to them, he had told them his name was Fazio... Yet whenever they pronounced it like that, they were told they were wrong! We concluded that the ‘z’ in his name was probably a different letter, and Fazio just didn’t know how to pronounce it.

One of the women taught me how to make some chains, and after setting up a beautiful work space for me, she left me to it. Every so often the door would open and men would walk in and place orders for their wives and girlfriends. I sank in relief that Korbin wouldn’t be able to trouble me here.

The door opened once more and a familiar voice was heard.

"Hi, can I speak to Viola?" I turned to see Joe standing by the main counter, talking to the receptionist. When he spotted me he waved kindly and then walked straight over to me.

"What are you doing here?" I asked, panicked.

"I’m not giving up." He smiled helplessly. "I didn’t like what happened this morning. So I want to take you for lunch."

I looked at my watch. "Joe, it’s only half 10! You’re so early!"

He nodded, happy with himself. "It’s okay. I thought I’d just wait over there in the waiting room, read some magazines and stuff, you know? Just to make sure you don’t work too hard!"

I stared at him wide-eyed.

"Don’t worry!" He laughed, happy. "I’ll be over there; I won’t get in your way until lunch time!" With that, he walked over to the waiting room, and sat himself down with a magazine.

I turned my back to him and stared down at a rose chain I had been working on... Korbin flashing before my eyes.

He threw me back to my side of the car, and left me panting for air. Tears welled in my eyes... I couldn’t speak; I was so lost for words.

"I’ll come pick you up for lunch at 1." He spoke casually; clearly he wasn’t affected by our previous hold at all.

I swallowed hard. "There’s no need. I won’t be eating with you."

Again two hands yanked my shoulders towards him, and his lips found my neck and ears. "But I will eat with you... Are you going to say no again?"

I continued to stare into the rose, wishing I could just vanish within it.

What was I going to do?

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Is Korbin’s behavior starting to get boring? Is it becoming same old, same old, threats and torture?

Well?

Good.

That means I’m transferring the story successfully then... Something’s going to come and hit you all soon... It’s going to hit the characters as well. I’ll be posting possibly three chapters today.

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Shout-outs

Neno - Remember Viola didn’t actually kill him though, we just don’t know where he is. You’ll find out soon. Don’t worry. You’re right, I’ve walked out of the house in my slippers before. Thanks for commenting and reading!

Sasha - I feel bad for Korbin because of all the external things that I know, that you guys don’t know, YET. Thanks for your great comment as usual, you’re very intelligent you know. You’ll find out the answers to your questions soon enough. Someone commented and said this is dragging on for too long, do you agree? Should I shorten it? Much love darling.

FJ - Welcome to the Tarnished Family; and don’t worry about sounding too harsh! The murder mystery began from Chapter 1. But now I’m telling you exactly how it happened, slowly but surely. I couldn’t skip out on all of this because then you guys wouldn’t know what was happening in the ending I’ve planned. I will listen to your advice though and rework the storyline so it doesn’t drag too much. Thanks very much for the insightful comment!!

Breona - I somewhat agree with your comment. This is the centre stage of the story; the murder mystery is only an underlying end result. Thanks for sticking up for me, and thanks for starting a debate. Hope you enjoy this chapter and thanks for reading!

Tamika - What am I going to do with you? Have fun with your homework; luckily there’s no deadline on it! I will make that deal with you. But you have to find the right answer, remember. I will probably give you some hints along the way! Don’t have time to write an essay, and tell your husband he’s a lucky man! Viola is taking a step back now; she’s been through the nightmare... This is her recovery. Will she be allowed to recover? Thanks for reading and commenting with your gigantic beast essays. Smoochies!

Chrystina J - Who said Joseph, is the bad guy? When did he become the bad guy? Joseph doesn’t know anything? Joseph is just Viola’s friend who doesn’t know about what Korbin has done to her? I laughed so hard when I read the question: Why hasn’t Korbin died yet? It will happen when you least expect it. You can do anything you set your mind to; and that include writing. Thanks for the comment and reading.

Skyblu - I’m sorry... I had to do it! It’s called a suspense story for a reason! I had to! It’s not that I’m trying to... You know... Enrage you with suspense or anything. I agree with your hypothesis. He’s not addicted to hurting her, just being near her... Making sure she doesn’t forget him... Crazy isn’t it? Thanks for reading and commenting! And by the way, if you had been my English teacher I would have loved English literature a lot more!
By
Published: 10/30/2012
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