Page 31

Author: Kirsty Moseley

Just then there was a blur and Blake fell to the floor. I looked up through my tears to see Clay, he grabbed me picking me up off of the floor and pushed me gently towards Tom who held me tightly. Ben and Craig both moved to Clay's back ready to help him if he needed it, he didn't. Clay jumped down and started punching Blake.

"I told you to f**king leave her alone!" he was shouting as he threw punch after punch, I was crying. Blake's face was covered in blood and he had his arms over his face in defence, Clay kicked him hard in the stomach.

"If I ever see you near her again I swear to God I will beat you until you're dead, do you hear me Chambers?" he shouted kicking him again, and again. Blake winced and nodded. Craig and Ben grabbed Clay dragging him away while he was still thrashing around trying to beat the life out of Blake.

"Enough Clay" I heard Ben say fiercely. Clay took a deep breath and nodded, they let him go and he came over to me taking me into his arms and pulling me to his car and sitting me on his lap rubbing my back soothingly.

"It's ok Riley, it's ok beautiful girl" he murmured into my hair. He pulled back to look at me, he rubbed his hands gently over my face wincing as I flinched when he touched my sore cheek. "Are you ok?" he asked quietly looking at me concerned, I wriggled my fingers on my bad arm making pain shoot up it again. I whimpered and he took hold of my hand, "It's hurting again?" he asked looking angry again, I nodded and he hissed through his teeth. "Ok beautiful girl lets go back to the hospital and get it checked out ok?" he asked moving me onto the passenger seat and buckling my seatbelt.

It turned out that nothing else had broken in my arm but that the break had moved slightly, they had to redo my cast, the police came to take a statement and as there were witnesses this time they would be able to arrest Blake as most of the boys from the team had seen him slap me. The police warned Clay about fighting but because of the circumstances they let him off without a caution thankfully. Clay had phoned my parents but had told them that there was no need to come to the hospital that he would drive me home.

After a couple of hours he pulled into my driveway, we hadn't spoken much, he was still angry at Blake I could tell by his jaw. He helped me inside and I was immediately attacked by my Mom and Brian who pulled me into hugs and kisses. Mom was crying and Brian pulled Clay to one side, I couldn't hear what they were saying but it looked like Brian was pleased with Clay, probably for beating the crap out of Blake no doubt.

"Is it ok if I stay over again tonight? I know its not really my night but I just want to make sure Riley's ok" Clay said seriously looking at my Mom and Brian. I could tell from his expression that even if they said no that he would be sneaking in through my window anyway.

"Of course son, you can always stay here you know that" Brian said patting him on the back affectionately. Clay smiled and hugged me tight kissing my forehead, I closed my eyes enjoying his closeness.

"I'm really tired guys I think I'm gonna go to bed, Clay you should go and speak to your parents and tell them you're staying here again" I said nodding towards the front door.

"Ok Riley bear, I'll be back in a little while ok" he said smiling and heading out of the door. I made my way upstairs shrugging out of my clothes and putting on a pair of pyjamas and getting into the bed falling to sleep instantly.

I woke in the morning wrapped in Clays arms and I smiled and snuggled closer to him, I didn't even hear him come to bed last night I was so out of it. I kissed him tenderly and he stirred and woke up giving me a sad smile.

"Hey beautiful girl" he said tracing his fingers across my cheek with a sombre look on his face.

"Hey boyfriend" I said kissing him again. "Thank you Clay, I realised last night that I never thanked you for what you did" I said looking deep into his beautiful green eyes.

"You don't need to thank me Riley bear" he said pulling me tighter to him, I snuggled into his chest again breathing in his mesmerizing smell.

"I love you Clay and I'm really sorry for all this trouble" I said a tear escaping down my face, he kissed it away,

"Please don't be upset Riley I can't stand to see you cry" he said quietly with a small smile. I wiped my face and smiled at him, "I love you too by the way" he said touching my face again looking sad.

"Clay I'm gonna go take a shower will you come help me?" I asked, not trying to be seductive but actually asking for help, I wouldn't be able to wash my hair properly with one hand.

"Sure" he said getting out of the bed and pulling me up too, leading me to the bathroom. After taking a look in the mirror I realised why Clay was stroking my face looking sad, I had a reddish purple tint to one cheek, it wasn't too bad I just looked a little flushed unless you looked closely.

* * *

Everyone was looking at me and whispering at school all day. I hid whenever I could, not lingering in the hallways, spending longer than necessary in the bathroom. The police rang at lunchtime to say that they had cautioned Blake but they had to let him go, Clay wasn't impressed about it but there was nothing else they could do. They said that if Blake contacted me again in a threatening manner that I could get a restraining order against him, but I didn't think that I would need to after the mess that Clay made of his face.

Clay was very protective all day, he'd told his friends everything that had happened so someone was always walking with me. It was annoying at first having Ben or Tom lingering behind me like watchdogs whenever Clay wasn't around, but I could understand Clay was worried so I let it go. He met me after school and escorted me to the field so I could watch his practice, and so he could keep his eyes on me, but he never actually said that.

"So you're not always gonna be this overprotective right?" I said squeezing his waist, he looked at me a little sheepishly.

"I don't know what you're talking about beautiful girl" he said innocently, I chuckled

"Of course you don't boyfriend" I said kissing his cheek.

He gave me a gorgeous smile and sat me on the benches before running across the field to his team. The whole hour Clay didn't really take his eyes off of me and kept scanning the area, he got in a lot of trouble from his coach and got taken out a lot by his team mates because he was too distracted to defend himself.

As soon as the whistle blew he ran over to me as fast as he could still scanning the area. I laughed "You need to stop! He's not gonna come back after yesterday" I said kissing him deeply. He picked me up wrapping my legs around him carrying me towards the school locker rooms. "Ew Clay you're all sweaty and dirty" I whined playfully.

He chuckled "Hmm, now say that in a more breathy voice" he said seductively giving me the flirty smile.

"Now, now enough of that no one wants to hear you two flirting" Ben joked, I laughed and hit the back of this head gently. "Hey! Clay keep your girlfriend in check" he joked rubbing his head dramatically making everybody laugh.

Clay remained on high alert for the rest of the week at school and somehow he managed to convince our parents to let him stay with me all week at our house too. On Friday instead of sitting in my usual spot in the bleachers with Rachel, Clay was making me watch the game from the front line, near the players entry way so he could get to me easily in case Blake showed up. At half time I got a text, expecting it to be Clay texting me from his locker room I smiled as I opened it.

Jailbait, why are you not sitting in your usual place? I see you're still wearing Preston's shirt, I thought we agreed you would tell him its over. Do it now Riley, I'll see you after the game B x

My heart stopped as I looked round to where I normally sit in the bleachers and saw Blake sitting there looking at me angrily, he had a cut over the bridge of his nose and a black eye. Bile rose in my throat as my hands started to shake, I couldn't look away, he smiled at me and it was a real smile like he really meant it. I stood up slowly and I saw that he stood up too, I walked forward towards the players entry way not looking away from Blake. I couldn't breathe, as I turned the corner to the entry I pulled the door open quickly and ran as fast as my legs would take me and burst into the boys locker room. The players were sitting around and the coach was shouting about something as I burst into the room crying.

"What the hell are you doing here?" the coach shouted looking at me angrily.

Clay jumped up and ran to me pulling me away from the door pushing me behind him as he opened the door looking out into the hallway murderously angry. I grabbed his hand pulling him back to me wrapping myself round him to stop him from going out after Blake.

"Stupid f**king asshole! I'll kill him, Riley let me go" he shouted, gently trying to take my arms from round his waist. "Tom, take her" he ordered finally prying me off of him and bursting through the doors.

"Clay! Don't please don't" I cried trying to get out the door but Tom wrapped his arms around me tightly. I looked round at the teacher, "Please stop him! He could get hurt" I begged crying hysterically.

The coach burst out of the room along with half of the team, Tom pulled me over to the bench and made me sit down. I was crying on his shoulder when Clay ran back into the room.

I jumped up he shook his head, "He wasn't there Riley bear" he said wrapping his arms around me tightly. "It's ok, everything's ok I promise" he murmured stroking my hair.

The coach came back in followed by the team, "Somebody needs to tell me what the hell is going on right now" he shouted looking at Clay. The coach took a deep breath then shook his head, "Shit! We need to go back on" he said waving to the players to go back to the field.

Clay nodded "Ok but you need to take me off, I can't leave Riley" he said shrugging.

"Clay I can't just take you off for God sake" the coach shouted throwing his hands up in exasperation. He shook his head and took a deep breath, "Clay, is this serious? Do you need help?" he said quieter looking at Clay with concern.