When they walked along the corridor towards the apartment, they saw someone in front of it. Blond, shaggy hair was pushed back from his face. Stubble covered his cheeks and chin, his clothes were clean, though the jeans a bit torn. The look on April’s face told Jonathan everything he needed to know. This must have been her ex-boyfriend. Dan. He recognized him now. Singer of the band Aviator Springs. Jonny had no clue how the guy had found her here, but he needed to go.
“April.” He took a step towards them, hands deep in his pockets. “We need to talk.”
“I don’t have anything to say to you.” Her face was nearly as white as the wall. But she was determined to get rid of him. “Please go away, Dan.”
“No!” He didn’t even look at Jonathan, didn’t care for him. “We have to talk this through. You belong to me.”
“I don’t belong to anyone. Least of all you after all the things that have happened. You destroyed my friendships, my job. I can’t take this anymore.” April was close to tears. Jonathan on the other hand, was ready to punch a hole in the wall. Dan’s face would be perfect for that, but he wouldn’t do anything now.
“Let’s go, April. You don’t belong on hockey-boys life. You belong in my apartment. Just like it was before that happened.”
He couldn’t even say what he’d done to her. He would never admit it out loud. Maybe he was ashamed that it had happened.
“No.” April’s voice was barely audible, so she cleared her throat and said, louder this time: “No!”
“You’re coming with me!”
When he took a step towards April, Jonathan stepped in. He stood directly in front of her and stared into Dan’s eyes. He didn’t want to hurt the guy, but if he took one more step towards April, he would.
“I suggest you go back home and leave her alone. She doesn’t want to see you and you don’t live in this apartment complex.” Jonathan blocked the view on April, who was more than grateful that she didn’t have to say a word anymore.
“And I think you should get back on the ice, you little ballerina and keep the fuck out of my business. And more importantly leave my girlfriend alone.”
“I think she prefers the term ex-girlfriend.” Jonathan stepped forward, their noses nearly touching. “I don’t think it’s such a good idea to fight me, boy. Go home, play your guitar or whatever the hell you do and leave April alone. She deserves so much better than you. A guy who hits his girlfriend.” Disgusted Jonathan looked him up and down. “Here are cameras everywhere. So I think it would be clever of you to go home, before someone thinks you’re suspicious and calls the police.”
Dan stared at him a moment longer, before he turned around and stomped away. Jonathan unlocked the door and quickly stepped inside with April. After taking off his coat and helping her out of hers, he wrapped his arms around her. She was still pale and shaking. Tears were running down her cheeks now as she buried her face in his sweater.
No, she didn’t want to cry in front of him. Didn’t want to cry because of Dan. And yet here she was clinging on to Jonathan and crying like a baby. It was good to be held in his strong arms. To feel safe for once.
“It’s okay, April.” Carefully he tilted her head up and brushed away the tears. “How about you take a long, hot bath and I’ll make dinner? And I can call Abby, see if you can stay with her for a bit, if you want to. I don’t know if you want to stay here all by yourself. And I think, Abby would be more than happy to spend some time with you when we’re on the road.”
April stepped out of his embrace and rubbed a hand over her face. This was all a bit too much for her. The kiss, the feelings welling up inside her and now Dan. A long, hot bath was what she needed. Instead of saying anything, she simply nodded, turned around and walked to her room. When she’d locked herself in the bathroom, Jonny took the phone and called Abby.
“How was your skating lesson?” Was Abby’s first question, before she’d even said Hello. April had told her about this before they’d left.
“It was good.” He wouldn’t say too much. He didn’t even know what he should say, but April would probably talk to Abby about what had happened. “But when we returned everything kinda took a turn for the worse.”
“What happened?”Alarmed, Abby sat up, attracting Patrick’s attention to herself.
“Her ex-boyfriend was here and wanted her to come with him. You know that we’ll be gone for nearly a week, so I thought that April could maybe stay with you until she feels okay all by herself in the apartment.”
“Of course she can. That will be fun! Tell her that I’m really looking forward to it.”