“Apparently, neither do you. You called out more often than you were here, and now you quit without notice?”
“Now that you’ve summed up my month, let’s go. Hit me,” I egg him on so I can level him.
He cracks his neck to both sides and flexes his biceps. I laugh, knowing I’m only fanning his rage. I’m guessing he thinks he can use his height and brawn to overpower me, but he’s never been a very smart guy. He fakes a move, and I just stand there in a defensive position. He swings, pulling back so it lands short. I merely stare at him, because he’s pretty easy to read.
“Rose, are you okay?” I ask without looking at her. She’s sitting on the floor with her head between her knees. “Maybe you should tell my brother I’ll be out in a minute. He was supposed to drive me home.”
Jake frowns. “You don’t have a brother,” he says, stating the fucking obvious.
But Rose knows what I mean, of course. If she hadn’t been punched in the face she would have her wits about her and go find Emmett without any prodding.
“Yeah, um. Let me find him and tell him,” she grits out, and I know she’s in serious pain. Her face is swelling rapidly, her nose bleeding down over her lips and chin. It’ll only take one look at her from anybody to know she needs help.
Rose stumbles on her high heels to the exit, and I maintain my attention on Jake. My time is limited if I want to beat the shit out of him. And I do; I really, really, do.
“Looks like I better make it a quick lesson,” Jake taunts as he watches her walk out.
I’m beyond fed up, so I strike fast while Jake’s looking at Rose. My palm connects with the end of his nose, crushing it into his sinuses. He screams like a baby and doubles over, giving me the opportunity to knee him in the forehead. When his head snaps up, I kick him square in his tiny testicles. Jake is absolutely howling in pain as he drops to the floor cupping his bruised balls.
“Bella!” I hear the man behind me, but I don’t turn around. I continue to wale on Jake while he’s down, and he lifts his hands in defense.
“That’s for punching Rose in the face, and that’s for being a fucking dirtbag pig!” I scream at him as I kick and punch him.
“Bella!” This time there are hands on me, and I whirl around swinging. Emmett catches my punch in the palm of his fist. “That’s enough,” he says gently.
I stare at our hands for a second, not comprehending. I always thought I was tough enough to take on anyone, but I was wrong.
“I was wrong,” I cry, and Emmett wraps his arms around me as sobs wrack my body. I couldn't call all the shots with Edward, and I couldn't guard my heart. I mixed up love and lust, so that when I really did fall I missed it.
I don’t know how long he holds me, but I suddenly break away as I think of Rose. “Where’s Rose?” I ask, sniffling.
“She’s in a chair with a bag of ice on her face. Somebody that said his name is Edward is helping her. I called in the assault, so an ambulance is on the way.” He peers down at Jacob, curled in a ball weeping. “I’m guessing it's actually for him.”
I can’t help but laugh through my tears.