"Sit down and shut your mouth right now!" Wade Barrett growled, glaring disdainfully over at his girlfriend with anger shining in his dark eyes. He pushed her down on the couch when she didn't immediately follow orders, scowling, daring her to defy him again, especially in front of his creation.
The group was the most dominant selection of athletes the WWE had ever seen and consisted of Justin Gabriel, David Otunga, Heath Slater, Husky Harris, Michael McGillicutty and…John Cena. Wade's real name was Stuart Bennett, though he refused to be called that in the WWE, having wrestled in another promotion under his birth name. Justin Gabriel's real name was Paul and didn't mind being called by it, though there were a lot of Paul's in the business…such as Paul Levesque –Most fans knew him as Triple H- and Paul Wight also known as The Big Show. Paul decided using his ring name wasn't that bad, most of the guys did it anyway.
Heath wrestled under his first real name, but his actual last name was Miller. David Otunga had been a reality television actor prior to becoming an entertainer for the WWE, so he refused to wrestle under any other name other than his own. Windham Rotunda had recently debuted in the company on WWE's NXT show in its second season, though he preferred being called Harris, hating his real name. Michael McGillicutty was actually the son of former wrestler and the late great Curt Henning, his real name Joseph Henning, though he tried not mentioning his father too much.
Then there was John Cena, a prideful man who was stuck doing Wade's bidding, including trying to take the world heavyweight title from Randy Orton. John simply stood there in the far corner, his hat pulled down over his blazing blue eyes, watching the scene unfold. He couldn't believe the scumbag leader of Nexus treated his own girlfriend like garbage, wondering why she stuck around.
Riley swallowed hard at the look that crossed Stu's face and immediately lowered her eyes to the floor, clasping her hands in her lap. What had she ever seen in Stu? Riley didn't understand it and probably never would, thankful his attention had averted back to his group of henchmen, knowing she would be paying for her insolence later when they were alone.
Where had it all gone wrong? When Riley first met Stu, he was the sweetest man in the world and she adored his accent. He was born in England so he had a very deep English accent that used to make Riley weak in the knees. Not to mention they had unbelievable chemistry both in and out of the bedroom. To the untrained eye, people thought they were a happy, healthy couple.
He wasn't bad looking either, standing six foot five and weighing well over two hundred pounds. Riley had been with him for three years and was ecstatic to find out the WWE wanted him on their programming, offering him a contract. Stu had never been so happy in his life and Riley honestly thought this would make things better between them, especially when he pleaded with her to join him on the road.
If anything, things went from bad to worse.
At first it was threats, but when Stu felt he wasn't getting through to Riley, the abuse began and hadn't stopped. The threats turned into striking her, mostly across her the face, and then rape soon followed. Riley would never forget the night Stu raped her, having been drunk out of his mind, and called her every filthy name he could think of while forcing her to have sex.
He was brutal and afterwards Riley couldn't even stand, knowing her insides had to be torn to shreds from all the raping and abuse. She'd been suffering for close to two years now, honestly not knowing why she stayed with him. Love made people do weird crazy things, but Riley was at her breaking point, ready to throw away three long years away so she could finally stop hurting physically, mentally and emotionally.
"Prick." Riley barely mumbled under her breath while she listened to Stu bark orders at his henchman, shaking her head sadly. Of course he hadn't heard her, especially with that loud mouth of his echoing throughout the dressing room. 'I need to get away from him.' She thought, feeling another piece of her dead broken heart flutter to the pits of her stomach.
"Do you understand me? I want him destroyed. I do not want Randy Orton walking out of this building tonight, do you understand?" Wade stated, his beady eyes moving to the far corner, a sick smirk forming on his lips. "That includes you too, Cena."
"Man, why does Cena always have to be involved?" David finally had enough and spoke up, watching Wade's head snap to stare back at him. "We can handle Orton without his interference, remember what happened last time?"
John had a match with Wade at a previous pay-per-view event called Hell in a Cell and the stipulations were simple: If John defeated Wade, Nexus would be disbanded forever. But…if Wade won then John had to become a member of Nexus. John ended up losing that match because of outside interference from Windham Rotunda and Joe Henning.
It didn't matter if John was screwed over, he'd lost and the anonymous Raw General Manager, which was a talking laptop of all things, demanded John to hold up his end of the deal. If John didn't do exactly what Wade Barrett ordered, he would be fired and exiled from the WWE forever. John loved his job too much to let it go, to let all of his fans down, and had put up with weeks of abuse from Barrett, though his patience was quickly wearing thin.
Riley had noticed it.
"David, do you not trust me as your leader?" Wade demanded irritably, cracking his knuckles when David simply lowered his head.
"Then pipe down and listen to me. I know what I'm doing and I know what's best for Nexus, which is why I'm the leader." Wade loved reminding these men he was the one in charge, his eyes never leaving John. "Front and center, Cena, now."
Very reluctantly, John walked over to him, wearing his purple and gold cap with his purple Never Give Up Cenation t-shirt, which looked ready to bust off of his huge biceps. He wore simple baggy blue jean shorts and sneakers, looking up at Wade with angry filled blue eyes. He wanted nothing more than to drop Wade like a bad habit right then and there, balling them into fists.
"What do you want?" John demanded tensely, his jaw tightened, eyes narrowed.
Wade was all smiles, his dark eyes gleaming wickedly. "Go fetch me a glass of water." He ordered, watching as the light in John's eyes began slowly dying, chuckling cheerfully.
"Are you serious?" John couldn't believe this, thinking Wade had sunk to a new level when the man forced him to watch Randy Orton being beaten down to a pulp.
"Stop it, Stuart." Riley quietly spoke up, standing from the couch and took the glass her boyfriend had handed John. "I'll go fetch you some water, leave him alone." She couldn't take Stu abusing someone else, deciding to be the sacrificial lamp so to speak.
John blinked at the woman, wondering if she'd lost her mind, and watched the fire flare in Wade's eyes. "No, no don't worry about it." He tried diffusing the tense situation, taking the glass from her. "I'll go get the water, just sit back down." He really didn't want to see Wade strike this beautiful woman, having seen it earlier in the day when she simply told him she was going to the bathroom down the hall.
"Watch your tongue and mind your leader, Riley." Wade ordered, pointing back to the couch, not believing she'd actually interfered. The woman enjoyed angering him that much was obvious.
"My leader?" Riley couldn't take it anymore, her jade eyes flaring up with rage. "You're not my leader because I'm not part of the company, you insane jackass!" She didn't care what the consequences would be, not able to hold herself in check anymore.
Wade couldn't take her ranting anymore and hauled off, backhanding Riley across the face, watching impassively as she hit the floor with a small cry. He towered over her through deadly dark eyes, her body instantly scrambling away from him, cradling her throbbing face in her hand. This little tramp was going to learn the meaning of respecting the leader of Nexus even if it killed her.
"Stu…" She whimpered, closing her eyes tightly shut.
"MY NAME IS WADE!"
Riley trembled with fear, tears streaming down her face, feeling the chunks already rising in her throat from how much her face hurt. "Please…" She whispered, knowing it wouldn't do any good and barely missed his big boot planting into her stomach, instead hitting the couch. "STU, STOP IT!"
"You insolent bitch!" He growled, stalking toward her as she scrambled up to her feet, only to be backhanded again. "YOU WILL OBEY ME!"
Riley shrieked in pain as she went flying against the wall, smacking her head against it and instantly seen stars. Wade buried his hand in her long black hair, forcing her to meet his enraged eyes and closed hers tightly shut, trembling so hard her teeth chattered. To think at one point in her life, Riley actually loved this man and now she was being subjected to his abuse. She actually saw herself becoming Mrs. Stuart Bennett at one point, hell they even talked about having children, but that was long gone.
"P-Please…" She stammered out through a busted lip, both of her cheeks immediately swelling, dark bluish black bruises already forming all over her already battered face. "I love you, please don't hurt me…I'm sorry…" Riley hoped for once Stu would have mercy on her, her eyes still shut as sobs slowly began seeping out.
John watched all of this unfold and wanted to kill this monster with his bare hands, knowing he couldn't do it too. The way the woman whimpered and pleaded with him not to hurt her broke his heart and John found himself wanting, needing, to protect her. He could clearly see the fear and heartbreak in those jade eyes, which tore his insides apart, though John didn't show it, standing there stone faced.
"You love me?" Wade demanded, gripping her chin when it seemed as though Riley would look away from him, gritting his teeth. "Open your eyes." He ordered in a low tense voice, daring her to defy him again.
Riley did as she was told, slowly fluttering them open as silent tears trekked down her cheeks, her heart feeling as though it might leap out of her chest from how terrified she was. This man frightened her and his size didn't help, towering over her small five foot seven frame, very tiny compared to him. She fought back a flinch when his hand came up, caressing her face almost lovingly, though Riley wasn't buying it.
"Say it again." He ordered, his voice gruff with emotion. "Say it while looking into my eyes, Riley."
"I love you." She said in barely above a whisper, knowing he wanted to hear her voice, and gasped softly when his face buried in her neck, the hold on her hair loosening.
"Why do you make me hurt you, Riley?" He sounded as though he was in agony, breathing in her scent, feeling her small body pressed against his. "Why do you make it so difficult? Why can't you just follow orders when they're given so I don't harm you?"
"I-I don't know…" She was silently thanking the stars for small miracles, knowing what could've transpired with Stu, and hesitantly reached up to stroke his hair. "I'm sorry, S-Wade." She caught herself, hating to call him by his wrestling name because that's not who she fell in love with.
If Riley thought he was apologizing to her, then the woman had officially lost her mind, though that didn't stop Wade from caressing her sides. "You smell wonderful, love." He growled in that deep English accent, feeling her shiver against him and smirked, thinking it was from desire. When in reality, Riley was scared to death, afraid to move though she continued stroking his hair.
Her eyes momentarily locked with sky blue, the most beautiful blue eyes she'd ever seen in her life, and they belonged to John Cena. They hadn't really spoken to each other, but right now Riley's eyes were clearly begging him to get Stu away from her. She couldn't handle this much longer, knowing her heart would fill with the hope that he would change, that he would stop abusing her, that he would love her again.
'Help me.' She mouthed, more tears falling and felt Stu reluctantly lift his head as their eyes met again, Riley instantly plastering on a fake smile.
Wade frowned, running his finger lightly down the tear streak, sighing heavily. "Why the tears, Riley? You know I don't mean to strike you." His voice was full of such affection and warmth that Riley almost believed he wouldn't do it again, but knew better.
"Barrett, we have to get going if you want to pummel Orton." John reminded the man contritely, watching him instantly turn away from his battered girlfriend.
"We'll continue this later." Wade stated as he glanced briefly at his girlfriend, squaring his shoulders and headed out. "Watch over her, make sure she doesn't leave the room." He tossed over his shoulder, slamming the door shut behind him.
As soon as the door slammed, Riley collapsed in a heap to the floor, heart wrenching sobs flowing out of her body, the pain radiating almost blinding. She was in so much pain and touched her trembling lip, pulling back to see blood on her fingertips. Riley was pretty sure her teeth had been rattled from being backhanded twice, though she'd fought back her pain to calm Stu down.
Riley nearly jumped out of her skin when a hand clamped down on her shoulder, her head snapping up to stare in those blue eyes of John's again. He held out a towel to her silently, Riley taking it, silently thanking him for getting Stu away from her. John understood and nodded, glancing back at the door as his eyes narrowed again, still not believing Wade had done that to his girlfriend in front of him.
John had to get away from this group and had tried brainstorming for several weeks, contemplating quitting. It would be the same as being fired pretty much, though John loved what he did for a living too much to give it up. He also refused to quit because this beautiful woman before him needed his help, frowning when she stood up on spaghetti legs to head inside the bathroom.
'I have to stay to protect her.' John thought, making his mind up, cracking his knuckles and suddenly slammed his fist into the wall, needing to vent his anger out somehow.