Hey guys! Thank you for the reviews/alerts/subscriptions! Please enjoy the tenth chapter of "The Woman In Chains"...

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The Woman In Chains

5 WEEKS LATER

CLARE

"Are you excited to be going home?" Nurse Shirley asked, as she handed me all of my information for my local therapist, plus sleeping pills incase I have trouble with going to bed at night, and plus prescriptions for my paranoia.

"I'm scared," I admitted, leaning against my hospital bed.

"What're you scared about?"

My eyes wandered to the window, "I'm scared about the press, about what people are saying about me, about Owen coming back to get me. I'm worried about trying to move on."

"The press will have a new story in no time, and what other people have to say doesn't matter-what matters is what the people who love you say. Don't try to move on, start over. Clare, you're a young, beautiful woman with so much potential. Please, don't let the memories of Owen haunt you. You've got to try. Now come on dear, Mr. Martin is downstairs waiting for you."

"Nurse Shirley," she handed me my bag, "Be honest, how bad is the press out there?"

I looked down at the scars on my arm, and nervously slipped on Adams jacket that he let me borrow because I always complained to him about how cold it gets here alone, at night.

"The three musketeers will get you out of here unharmed," Nurse Shirley teased, holding my bag for me as we walked into the elevator. When the elevator doors closed, my heart skipped a few beats, a nervous tension filling my body.

BING!

"Clare!" All three men called out with opening arms.

Tears streamed down my face, a sob sounding the quiet hospital waiting room as I wrapped my arms around Jake. Eli and Adam soon joined the embrace from the sides, and for once, I felt at peace; safe.

"Are you ready to go home? Here, I'll take these bags," Adam excitingly grabbed my suitcase from Nurse Shirley, and apologized for practically ripping the bag out of her hands.

"We have your room all set up," Eli declared, and Adam continued, "Yeah, we've got lots of surprises for you at home! I even took the liberty in shopping, and there's a home cooked meal with your name on it."

"Eating?" I asked nervously, and Nurse Shirley rubbed my shoulder soothingly, "Remember your pills sweetie. Live life."

I wrapped my arms around her, thanking her for all she has done, "I'll come back to visit you someday, I promise." Without Nurse Shirley guiding me every step of the way, I might not be able to go home or be released from the hospital-ever.

"Ready to go? Ole' Betsy is parked right out front," Jake assured, as we began to walk outside the hospital.

Eli and Jake stood in front of me, blocking me from the obnoxious camera men outside who were flashing pictures already. Adam stood behind me, doing his best to lead us to Jake's truck unharmed.

"She's not answering any questions at this moment!" I heard all three men shout loudly-not in sync, and the same sentence being repeated to a point where my head was starting to hurt.

"Why didn't you tell anyone Owen was abusing you?"

"Show us some marks Edwards!"

"Come on Clare, let's see your best suicide smile!"


ADAM

"Those guys were a bunch of assholes," I reassured Clare, who was staring out the window in the living room with a blank expression on her face. She had my blanket wrapped around her body, draping over her shoulders.

She nodded my way, and I asked, "D-Do you want to see your new room? It's all set up, waiting for a certain Clare Edwards to live in."

"Yeah Clare, go check it out!" Jake called out from the kitchen as he began to warm up bread in the toaster oven. "Dinner is almost ready, so come down when you're ready," Eli smirked her way, but she just continued to walk towards the step with her head down.

The doctors had told us that she might space out from time to time, or you even might be convinced she's ignoring you. Spending the past few weeks with her has taught me a few things though; her thinking face, her thinking about Owen face, and a couple of other expressions I've become a pro at seeing.

"Do you want me to show it to you?" I asked Clare eagerly, excited to see her reaction to what we've done for her.

"...Um, s-sure yeah, sounds like fun."

I watched with a nervous grin as Clare toyed with the guest room doorknob, which was adjacent to mine and also now her room. When she opened the door, a gust of wind coming from the revolving fan in the corner of the room hit her in the face, startling her.

"It's okay," I assured her, placing my hand on her shoulder lightly, "It's just the fan."

Her blue eyed widened with each step she took deeper into the dimly lit room. She gasped, seeing the laptop sitting on her desk table that had her name engraved on the front.

"T-This must've been so much money, I-I'll have to repay you guys and-," I scoffed, waving my hand out in front of her, "It's my gift to you. We've spent so much time together, and I remember you telling me you used to love to write, ergo I got you a laptop to write. But, incase you don't like typing, I also bought you ten new notebooks that are on your bookcase. Your pens and everything-."

I was cut off by Clare lunging at me, her head resting on my shoulder. She tightened her grip around my waist, tears being absorbed in my Dead Hand shirt, "T-Thank you Adam...thank you, so much."

"It's not a problem, really-it's not. The laptop was nothing, and Jake set up your own bathroom through this door. Also, I knew you liked vampire fiction, so I bought you a couple of books," I gestured to the bookcase in the far left corner.

Clare immediately ran to the other side of the room, getting down on her knees and skimming her fingers over the pages of the books. She smiled, and I saw a lone tear trickle down her cheek, "A c-couple of books? A-Adam, there's at least ten series of books here!"

"D-Do you like them?" I could feel a drop of sweat slide down my back with the anxiety building up inside me. I didn't want to disappoint Clare, nor did I want to make her feel unwelcome in any way.

"I love them, I love this room, I love everything! T-Thank you, so much. Can I be honest with you?" She sat down on the mattress with a tiny skip in her step. I nervously took a seat beside her, "Of course you can, I'm all ears."

"Y-You're one of the only people that isn't family related, besides Eli, that I can really trust. There's no lies, or secrets when it comes to being around you and having a friend. I really appreciate what you do for me, and one day, I promise I'll pay you back."

My feelings for her had escalated in this moment, and everything began to hurt with the knowledge that I was keeping a secret from her; a very important secret.

"Clare," a lump was forming in my throat, multiplying in size, "I-I need to tell you something about me that you don't know."

"You can tell me anything Adam, it won't change the way I see you," I scoffed, "It might."

"Excuse me?" she asked, her glance showing nothing but confusion and concern.

"I'm not who you think I am," I started off shakily, "I-I'm a female-to-male transgender. It's when-."

She cut me off, "you're a man between the ears, but a woman...physically."

"How did you know that?" I asked, speechless.

Clare's legs dangled off the bed carelessly, before she flashed me a smile, "W-When Owen goes to practice, I used to go to some college courses behind his back. In one of my classes, I learned about it. It was fascinating, to say the least."

"So you don't have a problem with...with me?" She shook her head, sending a grin my way. "Why would I have a problem with you? You're still Adam, the funny, smart, caring guy I've come to know. You look like a guy to me, in all honesty."

"I am pretty masculine looking, aren't I?" I flashed her my guns, but she reluctantly placed her frail hand on my bicep, "Hold your horses buddy, you might kill someone with that kind of shot."

"DINNER'S ON THE TABLE LOVEBIRDS!"

We both heard Eli call out, but I had underestimated the proximity between us when our noses brushed together. I felt her breath tickle my mouth, but she didn't move.

"I-Is it bad that...I just got out of a relationship, and I want to kiss you?" She whispered, as I shook my head, pulling her to my lips. I cupped her cheek, rubbing small circles over her tense cheekbones.

I've never touched lips so sweet, or even felt chills form over my skin from a woman's lips before. Surprisingly, I have kisses girls in my day-whether it was at party during premature spin the bottle, or even willingly. I've never had a girlfriend, but I have kissed women, and let me tell you...not one has kissed me like Clare was.

Our foreheads rested against each others, as I watched her chest heave. She glanced up at me, and back down at her lap, "A-Adam, I'm not looking for a physical relationship. I-I'm trying to move on from Owen, and I've been doing so well. I don't want to hurt you."

"I'm just a sad soul searching for love," I admitted pathetically, turning my head so our skin wasn't touching anymore.

"Hey," she traced her hand over my face, making me turn to look her in the eyes. "J-Just because I'm not ready, doesn't mean I don't like you...or that I don't want to be with you. I do feel something too, you know. I might seem emotionless from all this medication that I've been put on, and all the stress I've been put under, but I'm still Clare. I hope you can learn to see me for me."

I daringly laced my fingers through her frail, sweaty ones, "Who ever said I never saw you for who you were?"

The blood rushing to her cheeks was enough to assure me that she did feel the same about me, and she didn't lie. Her warm hand rested comfortably in mine, and she stood up, "I-I'm in this apartment to start my new life, and I want to spend it with you."

She stood near the door, and I stared at her in awe, "So are you coming to dinner, or not?"

END OF CHAPTER 10


I didn't reread it...I'm sorry; I need sleep and I didn't have time-ignore the mistakes! D:

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Love you guys,

Cliffhanger Girl

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