Madison held her breath as he held up his face to look into her eyes, and she was almost scared to hear what he was thinking. She was glad to see that he wasn’t mad, but it was almost worse when she heard the ping of hurt in his voice. If she was in his position she would have handled it way worse, because no matter what it was about, it sucks to feel like you’ve been kept in the dark about something. It hurts even worse when it’s about the two people you care the most about. “I know and it was my fault for begging you to go to that party, I should’ve known better.”
She reached out and shook his shoulder with a sad smile, “So you were really thinking about joining the club?” Madison looked down as she struggled to hide how hurt she was by the mere thought of having to lose him again, and she felt bad that she was always depending on him to be the strong one, it wasn’t fair to either of them.
Ryder sighed as Madison spoke. It was killing him that she felt so bad about everything, but the situation was just hard for everyone involved. He was hurt, not that he would ever admit that out loud. Feeling hurt was a sign of weakness. And even if it was a completely normal human emotion, he didn’t show it. He couldn’t. “No one is at fault, Maddy. Shit happened. There’s nothing we can do now.” He took another deep breath as she continued.
“Uh, yeah. I was.” Ryder cleared his throat, closing his eyes so he didn’t have to look at her. “The club is more my scene, ya know. Sex, drugs, alcohol, all that good stuff. But it was just a fleeting idea. I’m not going to leave, Madison. I won’t leave you again.” He let out a dry laugh. She really was the only one that could ever really make him feel any emotions. He couldn’t help that his only weakness was the love he had for his sister. “I was just thinking about me. I won’t leave, okay?” he said, finally opening his eyes to look down at her.
Madison fidgeted in her seat as she looked at her brother, giving him a pained smile. “Right, great, the awkward stuff.” She took a deep breath and pulled her knees closer to her chest. “Well, it was the party I begged you guys to bring me too. And you went off with some blonde…” Madison looked around the room, trying to remember who the girl was. ” I can’t remember her name but that’s not important. So… then one of the guys you hang out with started hitting on me, like really hitting on me. Shawn told him off, and I still needed some space. To shake that creep off, yeah?” Madison slowed down a little so Ryder could process the information. “So we went into a room and I don’t know, I guess one thing led to another. He didn’t pressure me or anything Ry! I swear.”
She looked up at him with a sad smile. “I’m still sorry I didn’t tell you then. We just figured that would be best. I was stupid, I know.”
Ryder took a deep breath as he sat back and prepared himself to listen to Madison’s story. He knew he had to hear it. Maybe it would help him to understand all that was going on. As she spoke, she thought back to party that she was talking about. He hadn’t even wanted her to go to that party, knowing that it would be full of creeps. His father had forced him to bring her along and then on top of everything, Maddy had flashed him her puppy dog face and he had no choice. In typical Ryder fashion, he snuck off with some girl and left Madison by herself. He hadn’t thought much of it as he had been drunk, of course.
He honestly didn’t even know if he could be mad at Shawn or her anymore. In truth, he had no reason to be. Shawn had actually saved Madison from a major creep. But that couldn’t change that neither of them had told him. And it couldn’t change the fight that they had. Wiping his hand over his face, he took a deep breath and looked at her, actually forcing himself to look in her eyes. “You weren’t stupid. I…I guess I can’t blame you for not wanting to tell me. But at the same time I just wish I hadn’t found out this way either,” he said exasperatedly.
“I still am sorry, I’m always going to be Ry.” Madison sighed as he pulled out of the hug and she huffed, as she paced back and forth across the room trying to catch her breath. She pulled her hair long brown back into a a messy bun and then she started wringing her hands nervously. She still couldn’t believe that he would even consider leaving, she knew that she deserved it but it sent a sharp pain through her heart every time she thought about him leaving again.
“Of course we can talk about things, I should have done that in the first place, and none of this would have happened.” She looked over at him and lifted his face up, worried. “You’re okay, right? The bruising is going away?” Madison walked over to the plush chair in the corner and sat down, pulling her knees to her chest. “What do you wanna talk about?”
“I don’t want you to be sorry, Maddy,” Ryder said, taking another deep breath. He didn’t want to do this. He didn’t want to have this conversation. He didn’t want to fight with his little sister. He couldn’t stand to hurt her. And he knew he had done exactly that by thinking about leaving the safe house. No matter how hard he tried, his first thought was always about himself. He was a selfish bastard and he knew it. But he also knew that he cared about his sister more than anything in the world. It was evident when his mind had changed real quick as soon as he saw Madison.
Feeling her soft hand lift his face, Ryder tried to angle it so he was looking away from her. It had been a few days since the fight and he was healing, but not completely. He didn’t really want her to see him like this. “I’m fine. The bruising is fine.” He watched as she pulled a chair over and sat down in front of him. “I think we need to talk about a lot of shit. But how about we start with the awkward stuff first,” he said, clearing his throat. “What, uh, happened with you and Shawn?”
It just took one little announcement to crush Madison all over again. Word had gotten back to her that he was considering actually leaving her and she couldn’t help but break down again. If that were to happen, then she would truly have no one in the world. Things were complicated with Shawn and all Madison wanted was someone to talk to. She was actually considering telling him about her mom and stuff, just because she had a heaviness in her chest and she wanted to get rid of the ache and she didn’t know how.
Madison had just finished fixing her eye makeup after crying, in hopes that her brother wouldn’t notice how truly upset she was. She missed him, even his smoking or constant sarcastic remarks, she just missed everything. Her head snapped up as she heard two knocks on the door and she took a deep breath as she raced towards the door and swung it open. “I’m so so sorry Ry, please just please don’t leave me.” Her breath caught as she felt herself start to tear up again.
Ryder swore that he could feel his heart break in two when Madison swung the door open. He crossed the threshold of her room and pulled her into his arms for a tight hug, desperately willing himself not to cry. “It’s fine Madison. You don’t have to be sorry. There’s nothing for you to be sorry about. Nothing at all,” he said, taking a deep breath. He held her tighter to him. “I’m right here Maddy, I’m right here.” He rested his chin on her head and his eyes welled up with tears. In that moment, he knew that he wouldn’t leave the safe house. He couldn’t.
“I think we just need to talk everything out, love. I really think we do,” he said, moving further into her room. Ryder let her go from the hug and wiped his hand over his face, exasperated. He sat down on the edge of her bed and rested his elbows on his knees. He put his head in his hands as he waited for her response.
Ryder had had one hell of a week. Because of one stupid fight, he had lost the only two people in the world he had ever cared about. He hadn’t done much in the house since the fight aside from the night he spent on the town with Kristen. He hadn’t even spoken with Madison, which was killing him more than anything. He knew that he needed to set things right with her. He couldn’t lose her. Not for anything.
News had broke today that several invisibles were considering leaving the safe house and moving to the club that housed the unseen. Had Madison not been there with him, Ryder would have jumped at the chance to move out of the safe house. It was definitely more his speed and his scene. But, he had to be more responsible. He had to do what was best for Madison. He had promised her that he was never going to leave her and he wouldn’t break his promise.
Throwing on a gray hooded sweatshirt over his form, he made his way out the door of the empty room that he had been staying in. Maybe he would get his room back if Shawn decided to leave. He couldn’t think about that now though. He had more important things on his mind. Hood still up, Ryder found Madison’s room without a problem. Taking a deep breath, he knocked on the door twice and waited for his response.