In the back of her mind, she heard the footsteps on the landing outside her door, but her brain dismissed it. Mr. Fox and his wife, her neighbors, must have just come home. Often on the weekends, they babysat their grandchildren in Danvers so their daughter and her husband could go out for dinner.
She stopped breathing. It wasn’t possible. Her brother couldn’t have just walked in.
Tony released her lips, but otherwise, he remained motionless.
Slowly, Tony pulled away and looked at her, his expression saying the same thing as her brain. The shit was about to hit the fan.
“Buddy, how about you––”
Tony turned, and she tried to cover herself with her hands.
“What the fuck!”
Tony moved, acting as a human privacy shield. Or at least he tried.
Her brother’s fist plowed into Tony’s face, the momentum forcing him to lean toward the left. Immediately, blood trickled down Tony’s chin.
“Striker, stop it.” Cat shouted as she looked around for her sweater.
Striker swung again. This time, Tony ducked and Striker’s fist only met air, which only enraged him more.
Jumping off the table, she scooped her sweater up from the floor and pulled it on.
Across the room, Tony landed a punch in Striker’s stomach, but it didn’t seem to slow him down.
“You son of a bitch. She’s my sister,” Striker yelled loud enough that her neighbors on the first floor most likely heard.
“Striker.” She’d seen Striker anger plenty of times, but never like this. Again, her brother swung at Tony with his right. Tony avoided the punch, but, unfortunately, Striker got him with his left.
Her heart moved to her throat and her chest rose and fell rapidly. She had to do something. Tony didn’t deserve this. She’d been a willing participant.
Cat lunged forward, hoping to get between the two men. “Knock it––” Her teeth rattled together as pain sliced through her face. She started to fall, but Tony grabbed her.
“Trina, I’m sorry. Are you okay?” Striker’s voice shook as he took her hand.
Cat pulled away and focused on not crying as pain radiated through her face.
“Do something useful and get her some ice,” Tony said, leading her to a chair.
She wiped her eyes with her hand before any tears fell, but didn’t sit. “What is the matter with you, Striker?” she shouted, even though it hurt.
“Me?” Anger once again filled Striker’s voice. “I walked in to find you and this scumbag having sex on the table like a whore, and you have to ask.”
One moment, Tony stood next to her, and the next, he had Striker by the front of his shirt. “Your sister is not a whore, and you damn well know it.”
Now that they’d stopped throwing punches, she didn’t want to see a repeat performance. Besides, as angry as the comment made her, she knew her brother didn’t mean what he said. “Let him go, Tony.” She touched his arm and Tony released Striker.
A stare down to end all stare downs ensured.
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish