Chapter 9 – Who are you?

Crow's POV

I watched her walk away with her long blond hair moving slowly. Mixed feelings raged within me. What a strange night, a strange walk, talk—even strange company. I was confused and tired. I wished I was in my warm bed, but, at the same time, I didn't want to leave. Because if I left, I wasn't sure…actually, I had no idea how or when I could see her again.

But why did I want to see her again? Why was I feeling like this? Was it because I felt somehow protective around her or something more than that? Honestly, I didn't know. I felt confused and clueless.

She vanished into her house and I sighed, frustrated. Now I had to go. Turning on the engine, I drove myself away, taking the faster road to our garage.

My thoughts were a neat skein and I was unable to find any stray edge to unwrap them. My feelings were likewise tangled. What a mess! It was impossible to keep my attention on the road or concentrate on driving, so I stopped at the first rest area.

Yes, I was tired, but not enough to be dangerous on a duel runner. I felt nervous and I didn't know why. My heart was beating like crazy in my chest, trying to jump out of my body. Drawing a deep breath, I tried to calm my nerves and regulate my heartbeat again.

I stared at the dark sky, recovering images from earlier. Sherry had been on the edge of the road, shining in the last sunlight. I sensed her calm voice, the way she looked me when she was annoyed, furious, happy, confused. If I was happy and proud about one thing today, it was that I managed to make her laugh.

I closed my eyes and held my breath, trying to remember her laughter. Never in a million years would I forget one of the world's greatest sounds. It was a sweet melody that I could hear forever without ever getting enough of it.

Breathing out, I opened my eyes. My heart had returned to normal, but now my stomach felt queer, like it was filled with butterflies. Did I say butterflies? I shook my head, still clueless.

At least I had gotten the chance to know her a little better. She was a mysterious woman and I had noticed that just today. She was cold, distant, and rude. But I could say with certainty that all of that behavior was actually a camouflage—a fake mask she had to wear to hide the pain inside her…a wall she created to keep everyone and everything away.

I was sure about it. It was one of the few times in my life I had been so sure about anything. I had seen in her eyes, those beautiful emerald eyes, her true self. She was kind and gentle, a sensitive woman who was somehow still a little girl who needed love and care.

Today I had melted her ice. I had broken down her inaccessible walls and removed her fake mask. Behind all of the seemingly impregnable barriers, I had glimpsed the real Sherry. I had seen this, yet I still had no idea what lay in her heart, mind, and thoughts. Maybe I had discovered some things, but she still remained a mystery to me. Her character was a puzzle that perpetually confused me.

I wanted to know more about her; I wanted to reach the real her because I knew that, as cold as she was on the outside, she was truly warm. As hard as she strove to be cold like ice, deep in her heart, she was warm like fire.

"Who are you, Sherry LeBlanc?" I wondered aloud, looking above me at the dark sky.

Sherry's POV

I headed to unlock the front gate and marched to my house. Crow was still waiting at the edge of the road for me to get inside. Thinking it classy of him, I smiled again. When I opened the main gate of my house, I peeked out at him. He had revved his engine and was driving away.

'What a strange night,' I thought as Mizoguchi appeared. I threw him my keys.

With a quick movement, he grabbed them out of the air. "My lady," he greeted and dipped his head.

"Good evening. Sorry for my delay," I smiled.

He stared at me with wide eyes, absolutely astonished. I didn't blame him. To see me smile like this was really rare. I tried to hold back a giggle.

"What?" I grinned.

"Umm," he hummed, confused. His face became serious again. "Dinner is served," he officially informed me.

"I'm tired. I think I'll retire to my bedroom."

"Would you like to bring your dinner to your room, my lady?" he offered.

"No thank you, I'm not hungry."

Actually, even if I hadn't eaten anything, I felt like my stomach was already full—full of butterflies. Did I say butterflies? Was it possible that I had fallen in love with him? In love with an idiot like Crow Hogan? I shook my head.

"No way," I whispered to myself. "Definitely no way."

"My lady?"

I was still in my own world, a little lost within my scary thoughts.

"Are you OK?" he asked with a hint of worry.

I took a deep breath. "Sure, I'm fine," I stated. "Good night then," and I left the room, headed for the stairs to the upper level floor.

"It's really good to see you happy, my lady."

I froze in my tracks for a second. For some reason, I was ready to collapse or start running. I felt weak yet strong at the same time.

What's wrong with me?

I didn't reply. I just shook my head to clear up my thoughts and marched faster to my room. At the last few meters, I almost ran to open my bedroom door. Hurriedly, I entered my room, closing the door behind me and leaning against it. I took deep breaths to calm my nerves and my heartbeat.

"Happy?" I repeated his words out loud in shock.

But it was true. I was happy and I still felt it. In fact, I couldn't remove the smile from my lips. When was the last time I had experienced this kind of happiness? I couldn't remember. I just couldn't recover from my memories, a moment like this. After my parents' death, I found it really hard to smile again. Those images of their dead bodies covered with blood, lying on the floor, were stuck in my head. The only thing I could think about after that had been my revenge.

I had been so focused on this purpose that I forgot something…like how to have a good time and let myself feeling happy again…to free myself from my anger and those terrible feelings that still burned me from the inside. Well, that was how it had been until today. Because today I had seen a different side of a man who I had thought was just an idiot. But he proved to be something more than that. He was also clever, caring, risky and extremely stubborn.

I had never allowed myself to think about anything else other than my plans of revenge. I had lived the perfect life and they had taken it from me. I would make them pay I would gain my happy ending. Or, I would die trying to avenge my parents. All I had considered had been the ending of this bad turn in my life. Now, I wasn't so sure anymore. It wasn't all about me and my ending. Maybe it wasn't even about the happy or the bad ending. Maybe it was about the story itself until it reached its climax.

An idiot had showed me this point of view. An idiot! OK, I admit it, he was more than an idiot; he was an awesome idiot!

"Just who are you Crow Hogan?" I muttered, looking at the inky sky from my bedroom window.

The end!

I want to thank everyone who read, liked, loved and reviewed my story. I have no words to tell you how happy I am. So, who wants me to write another RavenKnightShipping fic?

My special thanks to my lovely beta BlackRoseDragonCK!

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