Title: I Know How He Feels
Category: TV Shows » Days Of Our Lives
Author: And The Moment's Gone
Language: English, Rating: Rated: K+
Chapter: 11, Words: 6,483
Warnings/Spoilers: AU after Chloe's return to Salem after faking her death.
Summary: He couldn't stop himself. "You mean to tell me that you two did that to each other and you didn't -"
Official Disclaimer: All Days of Our Lives characters and plots belong to Corday and the NBC. I do not hold stock either the man or the company. Chloe Lane, Brady Black, and any other character featured are NOT mine. The title, summary, and lyrics come from the Reba McEntire song I Know How He Feels and I don't own that either.
Once in the hall, Brady struggled to shrug back into his white undershirt, wincing as the fabric caught his shoulder. As his head popped out of the hole, his eyes connected with his uncle's. They didn't speak for the longest time, Phillip didn't even breathe. The men just studied each other; both seeming to know exactly what the other was thinking.
It was Phillip who broke the silence, coughing and switching his stance from one foot to the other in a barely concealed effort to keep from planting his fist firmly into the blank stare on his nephew's face. "What did you do?" He asked bluntly.
Brady tried to shrug off the hostility. "How do you know I did something?" His attitude was back, defensive with all the trimmings. What happened in that room was definitely a mistake, and as far as he was concerned it only involved himself and Chloe.
He took a step forward, coming almost toe-to-toe with the older man. "What the hell did you do to her?" Phillip asked again, this time leaving no room for jokes or accusations.
"It is none of your business." Brady said harshly, physically pushing his way past his uncle and into his own suite.
She couldn't tell how long she sat there, wedged in the small space between the bed and the wall. When she finally pulled herself to her feet, still clutching the sheet to her body, her legs screamed in protest. She ignored the knocking on the door, mentally where everything seemed so far away. It was like her head was underwater and she stopped caring if she ever broke the surface.
Chloe stumbled into the bathroom and somehow managed to make it into the tub, sheet and all. She started the shower, pulling the curtain and closing herself off from the world. Then far too slowly, she pulled back the sheet and actually looked down at her body. The bruises were there, not made from hate or anger, but they stuck out against her skin all the same. Finger sized circles along the line of her hips and the makings of a nice sized hickey on the inside of her right thigh. Brady's stubble had scraped against her stomach at one time, and only now did she notice the burn trailing up from her navel. There were bite marks on her breasts.
The sob erupted from her throat, pulling with it a fresh set of tears.
Yet again she had allowed herself to be drawn in to the endless depths of his eyes and the sweet harmony of his voice. He intoxicated her, and no matter how she tried, she couldn't help but drink him in. Brady had known that. Brady had counted on that.
She caught her eyes in the full-length mirror through the transparent haze of the shower curtain, and for once she wished she didn't recognize the haunting look that had been cast onto her features. It almost seemed like it would never go away. She caught a glimpse of another mark on her neck, just below her ear, and she could still feel the silk of his lips as the nibbled into her flesh.
Without thinking she grabbed the loofah off of the side of the tub. Not even bothering to lather it with soap, she just began scrubbing. Her skin burned, whether from the heat of the body she could vividly remember looming above her or the hot water, she didn't care. She had to get the feel of Brady off of her.
Rex looked up as Phillip stormed back into the room, grabbing his cell phone off of the side table and the suite phone off of its cradle; he made one frantic call after another. The first had been to the concierge, explaining an extreme situation that Rex couldn't keep up with in French and demanding someone be sent up with a suite key. The only part he had caught was the room number.
The next call had been to Shawn, or unfortunately, Shawn's voicemail. Then he hung up and tried the station. The police officer was in interrogation and no one could tell him how long he would be. Phillip calmed slightly leaving a message that there was something wrong and Shawn needed to get in touch with him as soon as possible and hung up on the poor deputy. Rex could do nothing but sit on the couch and stare as his brother tried number after number, attempting to reach someone, anyone who could find a way to get Shawn out of the interrogation room faster. He had always been there when Chloe needed someone. He was the only one who could tell them what to do.
There was a knock on the door, and Phillip opened it to reveal a very confused maid. She held out a door key, and Phillip thanked her in French the best he could as he flew out into the hall and down to the right to Chloe's suite. The lock popped quickly, and Phil kicked the door with his foot as he raced into the bedroom.
Judging by the state of the small room, Phillip could wager a pretty good guess what had gone on. The bed was in shambles, covers pulled every which way and two of the three pillows missing their cases. The comforter was wedged half under the bed and Brady's shoes were still where he had left them in the outer room by the couch. Chloe's dress, the one Belle had forced him to pack, was slung against a chair, hanging limp next to one high heeled sandal and its mate was no where to be found.
The bathroom door was open, light off, and he could hear the unmistakable sounds of sobs echoing around the walls over the light hum of the shower.
"Chloe?" He asked the room, just loud enough to be heard. Her sobs quieted, almost to the point that he could no longer hear them over the shower and he took a step to the room. "I'm going to come in now." He told her carefully.
There wasn't a noise to answer him, and Phillip walked loudly into the room, shifting slightly to pull back the curtain at the same time trying to look through it. As he caught Chloe's eyes, he couldn't force himself to move his hand. With the curtain still in place, he tried to assess her without seeming to gawk, not quite understanding what it was that he was looking for.
Chloe was curled up in the spacious tub, taking up no more room than was absolutely necessary, with a stark white sheet draped carefully around her. Her tanned skin, which suddenly seemed far too pale, was scrubbed raw, and he could clearly see what it was she was trying to hide.
He cursed, not listening to how loud the muttered expletive sounded coming from his lips, and finally grasped enough courage to pull the curtain from its position. The woman before him shuttered at the noise, and Phillip dropped to his knees by the lip of the tub, trying not to scare her. "God Chlo." He rasped out, forcing himself to look away and pull the terrycloth bathrobe from the hook behind the door. He reached across her, watching her flinch at the thought of his touch, and he turned off the water with a flick of his wrist.
The sheet was pulled away with expert care, and Phillip didn't have time to think about her nude form as he slid the robe onto her shoulders and stooped to pick her up off of the floor of the tub. As he laid her on the bed, he looked over her face and throat, taking stock of the small indentions and fleeting bruises. "Did he –"
Her head shook furiously, not needing to hear the rest of the question to answer it. Fortunately for Brady, he hadn't done anything to her she hadn't asked him to do. Unfortunately for Chloe, she had begged for it all. She didn't realize until he sighed, that she was still shaking her head at him.
It unnerved Phillip that Chloe still hadn't spoken out loud. Other then the small whimpers she allowed to escape occasionally, he didn't think she had said anything since they had heard her screaming. She hadn't looked him directly in the eye either, not since his first arrival into the suite. He couldn't help but to think that the person on the bed, the woman wrapped so tightly in the bathrobe, wasn't Chloe.
There was no way Chloe could ever look so lost.
The cell phone he had dropped into his pocket sprang to life, and he flipped it open without a second thought. "Phillip."
"What's wrong?" Shawn's voice was full of nothing but concern as he picked his paperwork off of his desk and headed from the building. Belle had had him pulled from the room with a shout of one single word, and now he was more than terrified about what was happening on the other side of the ocean.
"I don't know." He answered honestly. "Rex and I were going over the late night menu when we heard shouting coming from Chloe's room." Phillip heard Shawn curse and couldn't help but think that maybe Shawn should be over here with Chloe. "I met Brady in the hall, putting clothes back on, and when I got into the room…" He let his sentence hang and looked apologetically over at where Chloe was silently sobbing on the bed. "She's a wreck man." He told Shawn simply. "I found her in the shower, wrapped in a sheet."
He wracked his brain to fill in the rest. "Is there anything sharp in the suite?" He asked without thinking. Chloe's breakdowns and suicide prevention seemed to go hand in hand at all times. "I need you to make sure she can't get a hold of anything. Letter openers, her razor, scissors…a ball point pen would even be a bad idea right now." He heard Phillip frown and somehow the man managed a short affirmative that he had understood. "She needs to calm down. Give her some water or coffee. No wine, no soda, no caffeine." Again Phillip signaled that he understood. "Is she dressed?"
"She's in a bathrobe." Phillip didn't understand the way the questions were turning. Shawn seemed more than anxious about Chloe trying to kill herself. Of all the people to go off the deep end, Chloe would be the last. But why was he so worried? "Should I try to change her?"
Shawn felt like Chloe was a mental patient, or an extremely incompetent child. The way Phillip was talking, right in front of her Shawn wanted to add, and one would think that the woman wasn't capable of saying her own name. Then again, if what Phil said was true, chances were extremely high that she couldn't. "Not until she's coherent." Shawn said carefully, trying to envision Chloe sitting there on the bed. "Get her something to drink and try to get her to calm down."
"I think you need to be here man." Phillip couldn't believe he was listening to Shawn being so calm and collected about Chloe having an obvious mental breakdown. "I don't know how to do this."
"And how do you propose I get there?" He snapped. "I can't afford a last minute ticket to Paris, and I sure as Hell can't just leave Belle alone like that." It struck a cord with Shawn that he seemed to be the only one who understood that Chloe didn't need himspecifically, she just couldn't be left alone and she couldn't be trusted with Brady. Which begged the question what were the brothers thinking when they left her alone with him? "Sorry man, but you're going to have to do this on your own."
He had only left the room for a second. Phillip only wanted to get her something to drink. But the second he opened the minifridge, he could hear Chloe's sobs again. "I'll have them fuel up my jet." He told Shawn hurriedly, trying to balance the phone and the glass all in the same hand. "Belle will be fine until Mom or John clock out for the day. Chloe needs you here."
"I'll be at the airport in half an hour." Shawn decided. "Keep her calm, get her talking, and don't let her out of your sight." He snapped his phone shut and cursed. It was going to be a long week.
Phillip shoved his phone back into his pocket, shaking his head and returning to the room to find Chloe curled up in fetal position. "I brought you some water." He told her gently, helping her sit up and handing her the glass. He called the Salem Airstrip first, telling them that Shawn was on his way, and then he called his suite and ordered Rex over to Chloe's room. When he turned back to the woman on the bed, he tried his best to smile. "Are you okay?"
She didn't know how to answer that. She didn't know how to speak. All of her brainpower went to just remembering how to breathe. And even thatwas almost too much work. So Chloe just nodded.
"Do you think you can get dressed?"
Chloe looked down at what she was wearing and frowned. She barely remembered getting into the bathtub. She sure as hell didn't remember being pulled from it. And she had absolutely no clue where the robe had come from. She shook her head.
There was a tap on the door, and Rex opened it without waiting for a response. "Back here!" Phillip shouted, watching Chloe closely on the bed. She felt like she belonged in a cage the way everyone had been staring. If she could find her voice she would have told him just what they could do with their pity.
"Hey." Rex wandered slowly into the room, looking directly at his brother and then the woman on the bed. "Chloe?" He asked, watching the girl look up slowly.
"I need you to stay with her for a bit." Phillip said as calmly as possible. "I have to call Mom and get a few things together." Chloe dropped the glass into Phillip's palm and then the man kissed her forehead.
Rex just looked confused. "Why does Chloe need someone to stay with her?" He asked, watching the woman in question pull the robe tighter around her and settle onto the pillow the best she could. Phillip pulled the comforter out from underneath the bed and carefully draped it across her. "Phillip?" The older brother asked, just in time for the younger to practically race from the room.
Without his brother or an answer, Rex sat back in the chair and actually looked around the room. The pillows underneath Chloe's head were missing the cases, and Rex didn't even pretend to know why the sheet that was hanging half in half out of the bathroom door was drenched. There was a pair of shoes, men's shoes, on the other side of the door, and the bed had been moved a good foot and a half from the wall.
And then there was Chloe.
The woman looked like she was in the middle of a very torrid nightmare, twisting and turning and whimpering softly. She had kicked the covers off of her body entirely, and from the way the robe rode up on her legs, Rex was just able to catch a dark red mark on her inner thigh, and bruises on her left hip. Phillip had told him not to leave Chloe alone. Did that mean...?
But Chloe had gone to dinner with Brady. They had been perfectly fine with one another before they had left. She had made the joke about old times and getting drunk. The elder Black child would have brought her back to the suite and made sure she was safe before leaving. He would have told them if Chloe was taking other visitors. Unless Brady was the last person in the room with her.
No. Brady couldn't have.
It just wasn't possible.
Another whimper came from the bed and Rex's eyes attached themselves to the angry red mark forming just below Chloe's ear, and the matching one on her collarbone.
Yes, Brady did.
Phillip paced the length of the suite he shared with his brother. The jet had taken off with Shawn safely on board, and now the only thing he really had to do was call his mother. Oddly enough it was the one thing that he didn't want to do. Kate Roberts - Black was going to throw a fit large enough to wind her in some sort of record book. The only thing that saved them from having to experience it up close and personal was the fact that they had taken John and Kate's jet to Paris and Shawn was using Phillip's jet. Nicole would die before hers left the hanger without her on it and there were no more jets readily available. Kate refused to fly commercial.
He looked to the clock, yes Kate would be in the office, and somehow Phillip was even less eager to make the phone call now. But he sucked it up and dialed the long string of numbers that would connect him to his mother. As the phone rang, he tried his hardest to come up with the right string of words to keep Kate from rocketing herself over the ocean to kill Brady herself.
"Basic Black." A secretary said sweetly. "How may I direct your call?"
"Public Relations." He said carefully. "I need to speak with Kate Black."
The secretary started to frown. "I was told that Mrs. Black is in meetings all day." The woman double-checked the large schedule book on the desk in front of her. "Can I direct you to her voicemail?"
Phillip shrugged and tried to keep himself from agreeing. He would much rather deliver this kind of news to a machine at the moment. "Connect me to her assistant Carol." He demanded. He really didn't like using his rank as her son to pull her from a meeting.
"Hold on one moment please?"
Two short rings later and Phillip could imagine the look on his mother's personal assistant's face. "Kate Black's office." She said sweetly.
"Hey Carol. I need to talk to Mom." The desperation was banished from his voice. This was the sweet little old woman who baked cookies for his wife, not a firing squad. "It's an emergency."
"Hold on a second Mr. Kiriakis, I'll go find her." She put him on hold and stood from the desk, moving through the Bull Pen and into the conference room where Kate, John and Nicole were seated around charts and public charity reports. "Mrs. Black, your son is on line three. He says it's urgent."
Kate raised an eyebrow at her husband, trying to decide which one of her four sons would be calling and what exactly constituted an emergency. "I'll take it in here." She decided, reaching to the middle of the table and pulling the receiver from its cradle. She snapped the line number and pulled the phone up to her ear. "Hello?"
"I've got a problem." He stated quickly.
His room was cold.
It was odd that that was the only thought to rush through Brady's head after he stripped again to his pants and poured himself a full glass of Jack Daniels.
His room was really cold.
As he stretched himself across the couch, he scratched the side of his neck, feeling the raise of a bruise and downing the contents of the glass in one breath. It burned on the way down, but he welcomed the feeling. He could only imagine what was going on in the suite two doors down from his own. He was only sure that Chloe was drinking herself silly just as he was trying to. It was a shame he had learned to drink from his fiancée. Now it seemed Chloe had a higher chance of beating him to the stupor he was trying to induce.
A knock on the door jarred him from his contemplation and Brady pulled himself from the leather to the other side of the suite, none too concerned at the fact that he was only clad in the pants that Chloe had tried to rip off of him. He placed his hand on the knob, completely forgetting who would be on the other side, and pulled.
Phillip took in Brady's appearance, including the empty glass he still clung to in his left hand. The man obviously hadn't looked in the mirror in the last hour. His hair was pulled every which way, and when Brady noticed Phillip staring he ran his hand through it carefully. The muscles on his arms were obviously sore, and Phillip could only guess how much they would hurt in the morning when Brady would finally notice the full nail marks Chloe had left. When the man turned to shrug him in, Phillip had to keep from laughing at the identical marks that adorned his back.
"And I thought she looked bad." Phillip tried to joke, watching the hairs on the back of Brady's neck stand on end at the thought of both the men's ex. He didn't turn though, and Phillip would have sworn he saw the makings of a blush against his ears. "You want to tell me what happened? Or do I get to beat it out of you?"
"I thought you it was none of your business." Brady said carefully, trying to decide whether or not his uncle was planning on decking him.
Phillip just shrugged. "Well, that's a not too funny story that I'm not planning on telling you." He said after a moment. Throwing Chloe's current state in Brady's face would probably make him feel better, but it wasn't going to help anyone.
He stood there for a moment, not quite understanding the look on Phillip's face. "We went out to dinner. We had a little to drink. We went back to her room." He told Phillip without much emotion. And he didn't feel the need to embellish further
"And at which point did the two of you tear your clothes off and completely abuse each other?" He asked, pouring himself a glass of Jack and sitting on the couch in front of his obviously perturbed nephew. When Brady's eyes shot up, Phillip shrugged. "I highly doubt you gouged those nail marks into your back yourself."
"I don't know what you're talking about." He knew denying it was futile, but there was only one thing worse than admitting to his uncle that he had almost bedded Chloe. It was admitting to the same man why he didn't.
"You two have identical hickeys on your necks." Phillip pointed out, watching Brady's hand came up to cover it. "You've got a bite mark on you shoulder and I'm only sure it's your fingerprints she seems to have sprouted on her hip." He tried to read the look that crossed Brady's face and sighed. "I'd ask if you wanted to talk about it, but I just had to call my mother and ask for a favor so you owe me a damn good explanation."
He couldn't find the words to explain it, so Brady did the only thing he could. Like a true blood relative of Victor Kiriakis, he poured himself another drink. "You ever done something so stupid that you didn't realize how bad you fucked up until you were almost done?"
"Have you ever started a sentence without a not so hypothetical that sounded more retarded?" Phillip countered. Then after a moment he finally caught on. "Don't tell me that you didn't finish?" Brady looked down at his feet. "You mean you left her...Damn." He couldn't stop himself. "You mean to tell me that you two did that to each other and you didn't -"
Brady just examined his glass. He moved the liquid around in it and took a quick sip; anything to keep from having to tell Phillip the truth. "It wasn't right." He started. "We both had too much to drink – "
"You've never had sex with Chloe drunk before?" Phillip asked off-handedly. He had to admit he was having far too much fun with conversation than should be allowed. Chloe was practically comatose in the other room, and Brady was well on his way to drinking himself stupid. But Chloe would be taken care of soon enough, and he had to know exactly what he should be trying to keep from his mother.
"It wasn't like that." He shouted, launching himself off of the couch and turning his back to his uncle. "Chloe and I don't 'have sex.'"
The younger man just shrugged. "Well it's been a while, I know, but – " He paused and watched Brady pace. "Unless you prefer the term 'make love?'"
"I would prefer not having this conversation." Brady seethed. He turned and caught the smile in Phillip's eyes. "I would prefer not having my sex life dissected by my brother-in-law."
"Give me ten minutes and you can dissect it with your sister if you'd prefer." Phillip was trying to make him angry. A calm Brady thought about his words. He chose carefully and wasn't easily tricked into giving away information. The Brady in front of him – that was a man bound to make a mistake. "Look it really isn't any of my business whether or not you take Chloe out to get drunk and then have your way with her. Nor is it any of my business that you're engaged to Nicole, and there were probably a dozen photographers between the restaurant and here that got you and Chloe on film." Brady's face darkened again and Phillip just had to laugh. "However, I just negotiated Shawn to fly out here and take Chloe home, and somehow I have a feeling that this is about to become all of our business."
That caught his attention. "You're sending Chloe home?" He asked hurriedly.
"You gonna tell me what happened?" Phillip shook his head. "Or do I get to start guessing?"
"Chloe and I went out to dinner." He started, throwing himself on to the couch and watching as his uncle shifted. "We had a little to drink, and then went back to her room" It was the same sentence yet again, not even the tone had changed.
Phillip had followed him so far; he even pieced the unspoken facts into the story. Chloe had invited him to her room, he hadn't asked, and once in the room more than likely one of the two of them drank more wine. Phillip would be amazed if they both had had some. They probably started reminiscing, as Brady and Chloe drinking were prone to do. Then one thing obviously led to another and –
"I couldn't do it." Brady wasn't sure why those particular words were the first ones to come out of his mouth. It wasn't that he didn't want to, Hell had she not said anything to him, he would probably still be buried between her thighs; thanking God he was alive. But another breath forced itself from his lungs and Brady sighed. "I couldn't go through with it."
"I heard you the first time." He wasn't sure where the impatience had come from. Although watching his nephew do a complete one eighty back in to the insecure man Chloe seemed to turn him in to was admittedly fun, this was above and beyond what Phillip felt his call of duty as a babysitter. He was fairly certain that as an uncle, he wasn't supposed to be diving into this either. "Why?"
He could have taken the easy way out. Brady had thought more than once about blaming Nicole for the fact that he had just up and left Chloe the way he had. It would have been a cop out and both the men in the room knew it. The question turned to instead, could his uncle handle the reality of what had happened? Would Phillip press him when he admitted that something inside of him just snapped? "I don't know." He admitted softly, turning as if he was speaking to the bottle on the coffee table. Brady could tell Phillip almost anything, but he refused to look the younger man in the eye when he did it. He closed his eyes and smiled slowly. "I mean, man she was exquisite…
"You've seen her, you know what I mean." He could feel the air in the room shift as his uncle nodded. "She was lying there, with that crooked smile she gets when she wants more, and I could feel her, taste her…" He allowed the train of thought to run by, having at least enough sense not to describe how sex with Chloe would have been outright to the man he had stolen the Diva from. "And even after everything, Phil, she wanted me. She needed me." He chuckled bitterly and wondered how he had reached that point in his life. "And no matter how good she felt, or how sweet she tasted, I couldn't do it."
"Are you telling me you had performance issues?" Phillip asked nonchalantly, trying to get his nephew to take the sullen look off of his face. "Did Little Brady not live up to his end of the deal?"
Brady slammed the glass down on the table and whirled on his uncle. "I couldn't fuck her and leave!" He finally snapped, his arm slamming down onto the back of the couch instead of into the man's face. "I'm stillmarrying Nicole. Chloe and I don't have a future."
"Why is that exactly?" Phillip sat up in the chair, turning to actually study the man now. "You two are the most passionate people on the planet. You push and pull each other in ways that I have only dreamed of connecting with anyone." He took a breath. "You sister and I don't have the kind of passion that you and Chloe share." Brady looked away; a little embarrassed at the fact that Phillip had compared him and Belle to Brady and Chloe. "You two enjoy fighting, it's not just a way to vent aggression it's foreplay, and I've heard first hand what it sounds like when you two combust. You don't have a future with Chloe because you're more of a coward about your relationship than I ever was. I tried to pull her into something she wasn't ready for." Brady still wouldn't meet his gaze. "She's ready for you. She wants you. And you're running scared!"
"You don't understand!"
Phillip was on his feet the second Brady was. "Than make me understand!" He bellowed back. "Tell me why you insist on torturing that woman with looks and dinners and touches when in the end, time and time again you rip out her heart and leave the rest of us to deal the fallout!"
The older man slumped to the couch. "I can't hurt her again, Phil." He whispered, the picture of Chloe crying on the bed still so fresh in his mind. "I can't promise that I will always be there and that we can stand anything together when I've already broken it."
"Is that why you left?"
"It would have been worse if we made love." The phrasing was what stuck with Phillip. Brady talked about sex with his fiancée as if it were a joke. He had heard time again how 'sex' with Nicole had been, but with Chloe he couldn't call it anything but making love. With the exception of his outburst Brady had never degraded the act with Chloe. "I couldn't stand to watch her watch me leaving after sharing something like that." He ran a hand through his hair. "We can't be together."
Again Phillip sighed. "Why not?"
"We tried." He admitted. "I tried to be everything for her, to keep her happy and provide for my family. And then GrandDad died and I couldn't take it. I put all of my energy into the stupid idea that I could save the world and I lost everything. What's to say that it won't happen again?" He looked at his feet and coughed. "I walked out on her without thinking about it. I wanted to punish her for her ultimatum. I – "
"You are a selfish bastard." Phillip agreed. "And yet, you keep going back to her." He reminded his nephew. "You keep taking from her what she has always given freely." He looked down at the man on the couch, not even recognizing family anymore. "I think you need to think about why?" With another sigh he was out the door, pulling it shut behind him.
Rex watched him walk into the hotel, his face a mask as he scanned the lobby. The younger man seemed so determined, so different than he usually looked in Salem. "Shawn?" When the dark haired man actually looked up, Rex could see the weariness in Shawn's eyes. "How was the flight?"
The younger man didn't have a response. He had been doing nothing but thinking of Chloe for the entire eight hours. "How is she?"
"She hasn't moved since Phillip got off the phone with you." Rex didn't know what was happening; hell he didn't think he wanted to know. "She's looking pretty bad, keeps crying and murmuring." Rex saw the muscle in Shawn's jaw twitch. "And you should see the bruises."
That got Shawn's attention. "Bruises?" He asked carefully, pressing the elevator up button. "What kind of bruises?"
The tone that Shawn's voice adopted was more dangerous than Rex could have imagined. "A hand print on her hips, the fingerprints look pretty deep." He could feel the tension bunching beneath Shawn's leather jacket. "A bite on her collarbone, hickey on her neck. She's got the robe wrapped around her too tight for me to see much else."
They arrived at the room, and Shawn made a beeline for the bedroom. He didn't flinch when he opened the door to survey the room. Chloe was in a ball again, almost completely centered on the bed. She didn't move when his footsteps announced his presence, but she sighed when he spoke her name. Somehow Shawn knew she would relax. He was there for her, just like he always was. Chloewould be okay.
"Can I see?" He asked when she rolled to him, pulling the comforter down her shoulder slightly. Yes, Shawn was treating her like a child, taking the kind of care that he reserved for Joy. Chloe conceded, rolling further off of the blanket and allowing him to pull it away from her skin.
She didn't have to see him to know that his eyes narrowed when scanning her body.
Rex's assessment had been more or less accurate. There were fingerprints on each side of her hips, and crescent nail prints on top of that. The bite mark on her inner thigh had reddened more in the last eight hours, and Shawn noted the angry bruise starting just around that. The hickey on her neck stood out more than he thought it would, and Chloe's breasts were riddled with bite marks and stubble burn alike.
He didn't have to be a cop to come up with a pretty good guess about what had happened.
It was a shame though, that Rex wasn't a mind reader.
Shawn had Chloe covered again and he was out the door before the older man knew what was happening. He banged furiously at the wood two doors down from Chloe's praying that it was the right room, and when Brady pulled it open, Shawn's fist connected solidly to his chin.
"What the –" Shawn's hit him again, this time landing an unsteady punch to the man's shoulder. Brady took another step back. He didn't know when Shawn had gotten into the country, but he could guess that the younger man had seen Chloe. "Calm down."
"Why'd you do it?" Shawn asked harshly, punching Brady in the gut and allowing a satisfied smile at the grunt the older man emitted.
Brady echoed, taking each shot as it came. "What the hell are you talking about?"
But the blows kept on coming, over and over until finally Shawn felt a pair of arms far stronger than his pulling him up and away from the man on the floor. "You had to prove you were better didn't you?" He shouted. "You just had to take what you wanted from her. Have you seen what you've done to her?" He asked, not too concerned with the fact that he was fighting against Phillip's grip, his half-uncle at the advantage. "Of course not!" He spat out. "You never stop to look. You just move on and come back to get seconds, then thirds." Shawn actually spat at the man and Phillip hauled him back another few feet. "It's not bad enough you're hurting her, you have to remind her that you can." With a gasp he wrenched free of Phillip and hit Brady again.
"What?" Phillip pushed Shawn back again, stepping between the man and his target. The dots connected quickly and Phil tried not to laugh. "Go ask Chloe. He didn't hurt her."
"He's killing her." Shawn growled, calming a little to the fact that Brady hadn't forced himself on her. "He may not have put the knife in her hands, but he damn sure gave her the thought to use it."
No one spoke.
No one even so much as took a breath.
Shawn stopped dead as he realized just what it was that he had said. He cursed himself, wishing that he had let Brady punch him just once. To admit what he knew, to tell Brady what Chloe had begged he not; there was no way to take it back.
From his place in front of his half nephew, Phillip put the pieces together. Shawn frantically asking him to keep all sharp objects away from Chloe wasn't just a precautionary. Chloe and the man in front of him always joked about Brady leaving her, and how she 'could just die.' He had never thought about it before. He had never realized just how close Chloe had gotten to rock bottom.
Still no one spoke.
"Get out." Brady pointed to the door and shook his head. "Just get out." Everyone began to file from the room and he shook his head when Phillip tried to stay.