This is my first published fanfiction. I don't have a beta reader so if there are some mistakes I apologize. Thanks to hoppnhorn for inspiring me to finally publish my writing.

Home is where the blood is, Home is where the heart is.

That statement held more meaning for Layia than most people thought possible. And now that she was back home again in South Boston after ten years she felt that hard truth fully set upon on her like the heavy burden it was, a two ton boulder weighing her down.

The past is a strange and temperamental thing. It's as though it takes on a life of its own, becomes something more than lingering memories and fleeting feelings. It's like your shadow, always following behind you, not quite there but not quite gone either. But every now and then, just like your shadow, your past catches up to you, becoming one with your mind, body and heart, past molding to present and ultimately altering your future. The vital question is how much power does your past hold over your present and future? Do you have a say in the consequences or are you just along for the journey? And is the resulting outcome going to raise you up or destroy you? Questions such as these need answering and Layia was unknowingly settling herself into the ride that would produce these seemingly impossible answers.

Layia was 5ft 7', with a slender toned body and curves in all the right places. Her hair was dark brown with soft waves, reaching a little bit below her shoulder blades. She had bright hazel eyes with specks of brown in them and skin that had a naturally sun kissed glow, like a light healthy tan.

Tonight she wore black skinny jeans that partially covered her black boots with 3 in. heels. Her upper half was adorned in a dark purple tank top with lace lining the top and a black form fitting jacket. Three silver rings resided on her fingers while a necklace hung around her neck that her mother had given to her when she was a child. It was silver, in the shape of a heart with two roses in the middle. A symbol of a mother's love for her daughter.

Boston was as complex as the woman smoothly driving the streets with her car purring underneath her. Shady parts of town, rough apartment complexes, gated homes, suburbs with brand new condos, local favorites, college campuses, bars, dance clubs, salons, cafés, clean walkways, ones that were never maintained, and all kinds of businesses had their place in the city. The atmosphere in this part of Southie was thick with fear and foreboding, as though it held a dark secret that should never be revealed. The only people who lingered on the shadowy sidewalks were dangerous men, hookers, and the occasional naive newcomer. But none of that chased Layia away. It drew her in, beckoning to her like her own personal siren song.

The onslaught of heavy emotions caused by the unsettling reunion with her hometown irritated Layia, fueling her desire for a robust drink. It made sense that the simple brick building that housed a bar called the Four Roses caught her attention. Layia pulled off the mostly deserted street and into the adjoining parking lot. She knew what to expect that moment her eyes fell upon it, strong alcohol, rough men, and a never ending supply of cigarette smoke. Just the way she liked it. After giving herself a once over in the overhead mirror and locking her car she made her way to the thick doors that separated Layia from her temporary sanctuary.

Artificial heat engulfed her body as the doors gave way to the rugged establishment. The intense aroma of alcohol and cigarette smoke wafted through the musty air and filled her nose the second she stepped inside. It was a smell that had always been oddly comforting for her and tonight was no different. As it filled Layia's senses she felt the maddening tension leave her mind and body. She didn't recall this bar from the last time she was here. Of course she was fourteen then and didn't remember much about that time at all. She had pushed those memories away for a reason. Layia let a small, barely noticeable grin tug at the corners of her full lips. This was exactly what she needed tonight.

Four Roses didn't look more special than any other tavern she had been to. The bar itself was located on the left side against the wall. Past the bar was the back room where worn tables and chairs that had men seated throughout them were placed. One table in particular was full with eight men and him drinking and smoking the night away at it while scantily clad women tossed them longing glances. A pool table, a game machine that didn't appear to be working and an assortment of other knickknacks also filled the space. She could see a hall on the side that likely led to the bathrooms and a few back rooms whose purposes she didn't care to think about. If only Layia knew what this place and the nine men at that table had in store for her, she would have taken back her statement about it not being a special bar.

Her black heels made a distinct clicking sound on the sticky floor while her wavy chocolate hair swayed with every step she took to the barstool. She had grabbed the attention of everyone in the local haunt. Her attire alone set her apart from the other women that frequented this bar, not to mention the way she carried herself with genuine confidence. Presence and first impressions were always held significance.

She could feel the patron's eyes boring into her, trying to figure out why a girl like her was in a bar like this while the males simultaneously thought about how to get into her pants. As she took a seat on the worn, wood, perch her black skinny jeans shifted lower and her top lifted higher, revealing the toned flesh of her lower back and the scars that adorned it. Layia was grateful that the old wounds were barely noticeable in the dim light of the tavern. She wasn't fond of the questions that came when people saw them.

He was watching her as intently as every other man in Four Roses was, the eyes of his gang enjoying the same visual. Women like her were a rare sight in his bar, in his life and he had to admit the usual lineup of sluts he fucked barely gave him pleasure anymore. That would explain why his lap was bare tonight despite all the women that were trying to win him over from a distance. They were desperate for his attention and would happily do whatever he said, but they weren't the best lays and it was getting harder to get off from their overused shit. Now her on the other hand, she had potential. Her outfit was perfect, hugging her curves just right, showing that she wasn't anorexic but a real woman. Her lips were full and naturally pink, giving him vivid images of the things he wanted to do with her mouth. His eyes fell to her breasts. He could tell they were real, not large by any means but firm and just the right size to fill his hands. Her ass was perky and slightly round, the perfect size to go with the rest of her figure. The combination of it all was enough to get every man in the bar tightening against the front of his jeans. She was gorgeous and she was going to be his for one frenzied, pleasure filled night.

"Double shot of Jack and a glass of straight Disaronno." Sammy looked rather surprised for a brief moment before he went to work, getting her order. It wouldn't be the first time the bartender practically gawked at her choice of liquor. Apparently women and whiskey didn't usually go together. Cosmos and getting drunk after a few glasses was more common. Fuck that. She had never had a weak drink in her life and she wasn't about to start now.

Layia smiled in her mind as the drinks were placed in front of her. Perfect. She quickly knocked back the shot of whiskey and started consuming the glass of Amaretto. Less than a minute had passed before the strong alcohol was flowing through her system and she was ordering a repeat. On nights like tonight Layia wasn't much for savoring her liquor, she just wanted the effects to start kicking in. Layia was about to down her second shot when a man decided it was in both of their best interests if he planted his fat ass next to her.

"Strong drink for such a pretty little thing. Ya sure you can handle it?" He asked, slurring his words with a sneer on his face.

"The fuck you call what I just did?" She spat back, not even bothering to look at him as she spoke. Ignorant prick. Soon after the words left her lips she quickly swallowed the double shot of Jack.

The taken back expression that crossed his face at her comeback amused Layia. He'd obviously been expecting a very different response, that's what he got for drunkenly mistaking her for a stupid whore.

The man quickly regained his composure, his eyes had darkened some but his tone remained drunk and happy. "Come on sweetheart, you don' gotta be like that. I mean if ya aren't here for this." He said motioning to his crotch, as if that's all any woman who came in here was after. "Then what are ya here fer?"

"I'm here for a stiff drink. Not a limp dick." He was really starting to agitate her and she knew that downgrading a man's member was a surefire way to drastically hurt his pride, especially when the insult had to be true. "And I'm not your fuckin' sweetheart." The anger in her tone was more pronounced this time but she kept her self-control. She just wanted to enjoy her drink in peace for once. Was that too much to ask?

He leaned into her, his close proximity making her stomach churn. Showers were a foreign concept to this man. Repulsive. "I'm being nice here but ya fuckin' pushing it… sweetheart." Layia was well aware he said that last word with emphasize just to piss her off. If only he knew how unwise it was to aggravate her. Layia was so much more than just a pretty face.

"Nice? This is you being nice?" She scoffed in disbelief. "Well fuck me and call me Miss Daisy, I thought this was you being a complete ass." Her dark hues were boring back into his, daring him to keep pushing her. He was giving her the same treatment. His nostrils were flaring and his left hand was gripping the counter so hard his knuckles were white.

He kept his mouth shut and jaw tight for a moment, almost as if he was thinking about how to handle her. "Fuck this. Your comin' with me, ya stupid bitch. I'm going to teach ya not to fuck with me like this." He was growling, spit flying but luckily missing her. His words were still garbled with his intoxicated state but his irritation was beyond evident.

"Oh sweetie." Layia taunted. "If I was fuckin' with ya, you would know it." A twisted smirk fell upon her full lips.

"SHUT THAT PRETTY LITTLE MOUTH OF YOURS BEFORE I DO IT FOR YA!" The man was fuming now, every blood vein in his neck protruding against the red skin. He looked like he was about to burst.

"Ya know what ya are? You're the shell of a man who can't hold his liquor and wouldn't know the first thing about pleasin' a woman if he had a fuckin' instruction manual. It's disgusting and pathetic." Her tone remained eerily calm as she paused for a moment, letting that sink in. "FUCK OFF!"

She was so focused on dealing with the man breathing down her neck that she didn't even notice the one gazing at her from his table in the back, the one who had been staring at her since she walked in. His piercing blue eyes were watching her every move and his ears listening to every word that came from her mouth. He'd had a grin playing on his lips since she started telling the greasy fucker off and he was becoming more intrigued with each harsh comeback she threw at the man. Between her beauty and her attitude he knew he wasn't letting this one go without showing her why he was the proven best fuck in the whole state. If only she knew… it would have been so much easier to give in and go with the man sitting next to her, losing the interest of the man with blue eyes in the process. But then again… she'd never been much for the easy way.

There you have it. The first chapter, I hope that you really enjoyed it. Leave me some love in reviews and messages. I'm already working on the second chapter.