Santo Domingo. (Dominican Republic)
Val squeezed Luna’s hand and stood. Vin followed Val’s move with his eyes, a murderous gaze flashing in them.
“It’s been almost fifteen years, Vin.” Val said as he looked at him. Vin held his gaze, cursing Valentino silently and after a long moment he looked back at Luna.
She put the joint out in the ashtray, biting her lower lip, clearing her throat. Her eyes flashing her feelings after hearing such painful story about Vin’s past.
“I don’t want your compassion, Luna, but a little bit of your sarcasm would be nice right now.”
At the sound of his words, Luna felt her sadness turn to anger and spoke.
“I don’t even want to bother answering you.” Luna replied as she crossed her arms over her chest. “I’m tired of your games, Vin,” she said, frowning slightly and turned around, walking to her suite.
Vin grunted and Luna ignored him as she continued walking.
“How is that, Luna? Not even a smartass back word?!” He asked, raising his voice as he tilted his head to one side. “Come on, babe. This is your chance!”
Vin was trying to sound ironic, but his tone of voice was betraying him, holding the sadness and the pain he was feeling right now.
Luna noticed and taking a deep breath, she stopped and turned her head. “You’re not the only one whose heart has been broken at some point in the past.” Luna said softly, staring at his eyes. “It comes in the same pack with real love.” She added and without another word, Luna forced herself to go on walking until she entered her bedroom, sliding the door closed.
“Whatever,” he replied quietly as he looked back at Val, clearing his throat. “Tell me why the fuck you did that?” Vin asked, clenching his hands, trying to remain calm. “I thought we had a deal.” Val narrowed his eyes, tightening his jaw.
“She deserves to know why you are using her the way you’re doing,” Val muttered, holding his gaze. “Luna is not Tess and she’s not like her.” Vin moved forward, facing him.
“I already know that.” He hissed, his eyes flashing anger and pain. Val chuckled at his words and Vin narrowed his eyes.
“Then why are you treating her like she is shit for you, Vincent? Why are you punishing her like that?” Val asked, nose to nose with him.
“What the fuck are you saying, Val? Take a look around you, man. If this is your concept of ‘treating someone like shit’, then please I would love to be treated like shit too,” Vin replied, chuckling. “I’m treating her like a fucking queen, for fuck’s sake!” He muttered through clenched teeth.
Val shook his head in denial and moved backward.
“Like a fucking queen?! My ass, Vincent! Do you really think that she cares about your money or about your connections? You’re the one who keeps giving her all the things she doesn’t want.” Val retorted, his voice low. “She only wants your respect and love, but you have your head so deeply stuck inside your ass that you’re unable to see what you have in front of your fucking face.” Vin moved forward and stood in front of Val, his hands closed in fists.
“Careful, Valentino,” he warned him. “I love you like my own blood brother, but you’re walking on thin ice here.” His voice was cold and menacing. Val blinked as he took a deep breath.
“What?” he retorted, facing Vin. “Are you threatening me?” Val asked, his voice as cold as ice itself. “Because you should know that I don’t give a shit about it, Vincent. I love you more than my life, but I’m not gonna let you act like a fucking bastard with her, not anymore. I think it’s enough of playing God.” He said, closing his own hands in fists. Vin chuckled at his words.
“You already forgot who you’re talking to?” his voice was full of sarcasm. Val clenched his jaw.
“You might be a celebrity now, but I won’t think twice if I have to beat the shit out of you, Diesel. It wouldn’t be the first time either.” Vin arched his brow in amusement.
“You’ve got balls, Morales,” he replied, shaking his head. “After all the things I’ve done for you, man. You’re just an ungrateful son of bitch.”
Val’s fist was the next thing Vin felt, punching him in his face.
Vin blinked furiously, stumbling slightly. “Fuck!” He hissed and rushed at Val.
In two seconds, they were rolling on the floor, punching each other, shouting obscenities. Renee came to the terrace when she heard the noises and Luna opened the sliding door.
They couldn’t believe what their eyes were seeing. Renee had never seen them like this. Sure in a couple of occasions, they had argued, but they always managed to stop before one of them lifted a hand.
Both women crossed glances, their gazes a mix of fear and powerlessness, unable to do anything more. If any of them were thinking about stepping in the middle, they would end up wounded.
Right now Vin and Val were out of control and both women were starting to be more than just worried about them.
Finally after what had seemed an eternity for Luna and Renee, Vin’s local bodyguards appeared and stepped in the middle. It took five of them to separate them. Three were grabbing Val and the other two were still trying to keep Vin from going for Val again.
They were panting heavily, their knuckles swollen. Val’s nose was bleeding and he wasn’t sure if he broke a finger on his right hand. On the other side, Vin’s left eye hurt like a bitch and his bottom lip was bleeding.
They were surrounded by the five bodyguards who weren’t sure about what to do exactly aside from keeping them at a distance. For one they were supposed to protect Vin Diesel from anything and anyone, but on the other side, Valentino Morales was in charge of all of them.
Renee cursed herself silently and after a moment of hesitation, she walked to Val’s side. He glanced at her from the corner of his eye and winced slightly at the expression on her face.
Renee was pale, all her colour had drained from her skin and her eyes were so green that it sent shivers to Val’s spine. More than anything he wanted tonight to be unforgettable and damned if it wasn’t going to be. Renee shook her head, sighing hard.
“Are both of you done?” She asked, her voice cold, yet tinted with concern. Val looked at Vin who nodded ‘yes’. In response, Val nodded ‘yes’ too. Renee narrowed her eyes, thinking about what had taken place and turned her attention to the bodyguards. “Thank you very much, gentlemen, I’ll take it from here.” She said, her voice firm.
The men nodded and releasing them, they dispersed to continue with their tasks. When all of them were out of sight, Val looked at Vin, frowning deeply.
“I’m sorry, Vin,” he said as he moved forward a couple of steps, holding his ribs with one massive arm while stretching his hand to shake Vin’s. In response, Vin didn’t think twice and pulled Val to him, tapping his back.
“No, Val, you were right, man. I have no right to talk to you the way I did.” He said, letting him go. “I’m really sorry, Valentino.” He added, shaking his hand, causing that both of them winced. Then they locked eyes and grinned.
“You look like shit, bro,” Val teased as he gestured at Vin’s eye.
Vin chuckled, spitting blood and cleaning his lips with the back of his hand.
“You better wait until tomorrow, then I’ll really look like shit, bro,” Vin mocked, grinning. “Fuck, man! You’re like a fucking wall made of steel,” he teased, closing and opening his right hand.
He had forgotten that it was pointless to try and get Valentino Morales down. Val chuckled at that and then hugged him again making Vin wince at the pressure on his ribs and back.
Indeed, Val beat the shit out of him.
“I’m really sorry, man,” Val whispered, tapping his shoulder. “I have no right to talk about her. We had a deal. I hope you forgive me.” Vin grinned as he smacked the back of Val’s head.
“There’s nothing to forgive, bro. I’m a selfish motherfucker and apart from that I deserved it,” he replied, letting him go of Val. “No big deal.” Vin added, shrugging his shoulders. Renee rolled her eyes and glanced at Luna.
“We need to talk,” Renee mouthed and Luna nodded ‘yes’, smiling broadly. Then she returned her attention to Val. “Come on, bad boy,” she teased as she grabbed Val’s hand. “Let’s take a look at those hands.” Val chuckled, nodding and they both headed back to their suite.
Vin turned his head and looked at Luna. She leaned against the doorframe of the sliding door of her bedroom, staring at him.
He felt like shit right now and not only because all his body was screaming in pain.
“Don’t look at me like that, Luna,” he said, licking his lips, tasting his blood and wincing slightly. “I’m fine, baby.” She narrowed her eyes in suspicion, but kept silent.
Vin was trying to show her that he was ok, but she knew that he wasn’t and that it was much more painful than what he was trying to make her believe. But, Luna wasn’t thinking about how Val had kicked Vin’s ass. She couldn’t help but her eyes showed her feelings at that very moment.
Vin took a deep breath and went to her side, stopping a few feet from her, cracking his neck.
“But,” he started and then grinned. “You could take care of me a little.” He teased, his cocky grin still gracing his lips. Luna chuckled and then went serious.
“Listen to me and pay attention, Vin. If you want me around you, then you better start respecting me, got it?” She replied, her eyes flickering to his. Vin frowned as his grin died on his lips. “I’m not your pet and I’m not going to let you play me like tonight ever again.”
Her tone of voice didn’t leave any room to complain and Vin found himself nodding in agreement, thinking about Val’s words. He was right and he knew it. Luna knit a brow and turning around, she went to her bed and sat.
Vin heaved a hard sigh and started to speak.
“I didn’t lie when I said that I needed you, Luna. I really want you in my life with me. It’s been too long since I felt so good with someone aside from Valentino and Renee, but…” He cut himself off, staring at her green eyes and recalling his previous actions and words to her. “…First you need to know me like I know myself.” He ended, holding her gaze.
“And what the fuck do you think I’ve been trying to do since the beginning, Vin?” She replied sadly, staring at his eyes.
Vin sighed as he went inside and sat next to her.
“You told Val that I wasn’t in love with you, but be honest with me, Luna. Are you really in love with me? I mean with the real me.” Luna sighed hard.
At this point of the night and after all the things that had taken place, she didn’t have the strength enough to pretend anymore, not that she could after what they had shared in that same bed.
“Honestly? Right now I don’t know, Vin. You seem to have split personalities. One minute you’re sweet and gentle, next one you’re a nightmare. I don’t know what to expect from you anymore.” She replied and Vin looked away from her eyes, fixing his gaze on a spot only he could see.
Luna went silent thinking about her words, staring at the rising sun and after a long moment, she spoke.
“You show up in the middle of the night at my place, demanding my attention and I oblige each and every time. Not even on one single occasion have I turned you down, Vin. Not even once. I’ve been practically available for you almost 24/7 since the first night you phoned me …” Luna sighed heavily and continued. “You’re always talking about honesty and friendship, but you’re not giving that to me in return, Vin. And the most bizarre suspicion is that you know it.”
Vin shut his eyes tightly, swallowing hard. He was realizing now how wrong he had been with Luna and how well she had been reading him.
“You’re fucking each and every chick that crosses paths with you and complaining about all of them, telling me that they should be more like me. But, at the same time, you ignore me as if I’m not a woman, and… and the minute that another guy is really interested in me, you have a jealous attack. That’s not fair, Vin.” She whispered, forcing tears back. “I’m a human being with feelings and emotions. And your selfish behavior is killing me.” Luna was determined to let him know all the pain he was causing her with his actions. “I’m sick and tired of this situation, Vin. I can’t do it anymore, not anymore….I…” She cut herself off and looked back at him. Luna felt an invisible knot closing her throat and swallowed it back down hard. After a heartbeat, she found her voice again and continued. “I forgave you when you hit me because I understood that you weren’t yourself at that moment. Back then you were high, with more than just a couple of beers and pissed off, and because I was the one who pissed you off.”
Vin’s head turned fast at the sound of those last words, looking directly at her eyes.
“Don’t, Luna,” he whispered, forcing his voice out. His mind went back to that day and his stomach clenched painfully, just remembering how he hit her without a second thought. “You didn’t do anything wrong, baby. It was all my fucking fault.”
Luna’s throat closed completely and even though she tried to force the invisible knot, she ended up breaking down, letting her tears run free unrestrained, crying silently.
Vin felt his heart skipping a beat as he cursed himself. In two seconds, he grabbed her waist and pulled her to him, recalling all the things she had said. Luna didn’t complain or talk; she just let him move her.
Vin held her tightly against his chest, stroking her hair and then he made himself comfortable on the bed. Vin winced slightly, his ribs were screaming in pain, but he tightened his jaw and managed to hide it from her.
Luna buried her face against his neck and continued crying. Vin felt his heart breaking with every tear she was shedding and shut his eyes tightly, forcing his own tears back.
He had been not only using her, but abusing her and not only emotionally, but physically also. Since the day he saw her in his office at One Race, Vin didn’t know the reason why but Luna made him feel uncomfortable when he couldn’t remember her name, and later that night with all that mess with that chick who was a minor, she made him feel like dirty scum.
He had been avoiding thinking about that damn weekend because he couldn’t get over his guilt and he still couldn’t understand why he had been treating her like that. Until Val said it aloud. He was punishing her because Luna was too similar to Tess. He hadn’t realized it until now and he cursed himself silently, thinking about how much he had hurt her.
“Please, Luna, don’t cry baby.” Vin whispered as he pressed her to him even more, closing his eyes, blocking the pain in his chest.
At his pleading words, Luna took a shaky breath. She didn’t want to cry anymore, but she couldn’t help it. Swallowing hard, Vin noticed that she was still shaking, sobbing.
“Shhh, don’t cry, sweetheart. I can’t stand it, baby. Please, Luna.”
He hated to see her like this and he didn’t know right now how he was going to fix things between them.
As her little sobs slowed, Vin took a deep breath and made up his mind. “Tell me what I can do, Luna. Tell me how to fix this mess between us.” He said quietly.
Luna took a deep breath, opening her eyes. She was still shaking a bit.
“I don’t know, Vin.” Luna replied, calming down. “You’re like poison to me.” Vin tensed, sighing hard. “Maybe it’s time for me to go my own way.” She whispered and rose from his chest, looking at him.
“You can’t be talking seriously,” Vin replied as his brow went up.
He wasn’t expecting that answer.
Luna bit her lower lip as she moved from his lap and sat at his side.
“Look, Vin. I need a little time and space to think about everything, and I can’t do that if you’re around.” She explained, holding his gaze. Vin blinked, shocked. “Right now I can’t trust in you and obviously you don’t trust me, so why bother?” Vin looked at her puzzled.
“But, you’re my best friend, Luna and I…” Luna didn’t let him finish.
“I’m sorry, Vin,” she sniffed slightly. “I’m sorry but I can’t.” She repeated as she stood. Vin grabbed her wrist, preventing her from moving further.
“You can’t do this to me, Luna. Not now. Please, baby.” Vin pleaded as he stood. Luna shut her eyes tightly and pulled from his grip.
“I’m sorry.” She whispered, fighting back fresh tears.
Vin frowned deeply, thinking about the meaning of her last words. After a moment, he took a deep breath.
“I know I’ve been treating you like shit, but please, Luna, give me another chance.” His voice was low and deep. “Let’s start again.” Luna closed her eyes as a small whimper escaped her lips. Vin looked at her, sighing hard. “I’ll give you the time you need and the space, but you can’t go and disappear from my life just like that.” He said as Luna opened her eyes, staring at his eyes and the bruise already starting to form around the left one.
After a moment, she nodded ‘yes’ and Vin let out the air he had been holding without being aware of it, with a painful sigh. With that, he smiled a little and turned around, heading back to his own bedroom.
He wasn’t going to lose her now that he was starting to like her more than just a little, and much less after he realized the reason why he had been acting with her the way he had been.
Vin was determined to change things between them and damn it all if he was going to let Luna out of his life like this.