Refuse

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Cassie and I wandered back into the training area where Ace was yelling at a kid because they stepped on his foot.

But as soon as Ace saw me enter the room, he walked over to me, leaving the recruits to their shooting practice. "I hate training recruits" Ace barked so that the newbies could hear him. "Calm down Ace" I spoke calmly as I directed him over to the chair to sit down. "Is this the only chair in the room?" I was scanning the room when Ace pulled me onto his lap. "Seriously?" I questioned him, raising my eyebrow. "Gotta let them know what's mine" he  grinned proudly.

He had his head resting on my shoulder as I watched the recruits train; none of them really stuck out yet with their skill. "When can we go?" I murmured in his ear, becoming bored very fast. "Now" he stood up while making sure I didn't fall. "Alright, go home" Ace roared across the room at the newbies who basically sprinted out as soon as they got the opportunity to leave.

Ace took his hand in mine. "Let's go to the funeral" he rolled his eyes which I wasn't expecting. I guess he wanted today to end as quickly as possible but it must've been going slow for him.

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We arrived at the church, on time. "What are you doing here? You've still got a half an hour left with the recruits" Ice questioned us. "Ace is in a bad mood so we left early before he decided to kill them all" I nodded frantically, a scowl appearing on Ace's face.

We made our way into the church, quickly deciding to sit up at the top. I gawked back at the rows full of people, dressed in all black. Ace's father was not among them.......thankfully. There was so many rows that were full and people were still flooding into the church. Ace sat next to me. He was stiff like he couldn't move; My guess is that he had to be as cold as ice right now.

Coincidentally Ice pottered in and sat next Ace right as I thought that.

"This is a lot of people" I whispered quietly due to the fact that no one talking and the only noise you could hear was cries of mourning people or the shuffling of feet. Ace gazed into my eyes. "There's a lot of Mafia Men in here, stay close to me Sofia" he warned me. We are burying his mother and he is worrying about me.

"Stop worrying about me, I'll be fine" I judged him playfully, hoping to cheer him up slightly. But nothing, not even a blink. He was so empty which I couldn't blame him for being. Maybe this was my first glance into the Ace that everyone saw. Cold and Lifeless.

I played with my hands as the ceremony started due to nerves. "We are here today to honour, our dearly beloved Denice Hernandez. She was a mother, a daughter, a friend and a warrior".

Ace's hand grabbed mine. At first I thought it was because I was playing with them but when I glanced at him, he had his eyes shut tightly. I realised he was holding onto me for support, security, comfort. Our fingers interlocked as I squeezed his hand to give him a bit of reassurance that it would be alright.

"She will live on in our hearts. She has left behind many amazing people including her son Ace, who was the most precious thing she ever had" .

My heart clenched at those words. I wanted break something or hurt someone for him so I can only imagine all the feelings he is fighting off right now. He squeezed my hand tighter as he stared straight ahead blankly. I knew my Ace was still in there, currently hiding from the pain beneath a mask. He couldn't let himself seem weak because that would make him less of a threat.

I watched his jaw clench as he stared at the coffin. I was afraid he would crack under the pressure. I had to break away from my thoughts of Ace and also watch the coffin like he was. I feel like if his dad would've let his mom comfort him when he cried or got hurt, that maybe he wouldn't be so damaged now. But I liked Ace now; flaws and all.

I couldn't imagine Ace if he wasn't damaged goods. It'd be weird if he felt comfortable around people he knew like a normal person would. It would be weird to see him laugh at everyone's joke instead of just blink at them and refuse to crack a smile for their ego. I couldn't imagine him not being selfish; And I know he's selfish but when it comes to being around me, for some reason, he's the opposite. He's funny, creative, smart, selfless.

In a blink of an eye , people were carrying Ace's mom's coffin outside and to hearse that was waiting to take her to the graveyard already. Ace hadn't dared to pull our hands away from each other. I knew he needed me and I was more than okay with comforting him; even if it was just holding his hand for support.

The car ride was silent on the way to the grave yard. I glanced at Dante, Ice and Ace who all sat in the limousine with their heads down and dull blank expressions planted on their face. Ace still had my hand and refused to let go.

Dante was wearing a grey suit with a black tie and Ice was wearing a dark blue suit with a dark blue tie. The seats were made of leather and the roof had a bunch of buttons on it. I clicked one and the radio began to play, making me jump. Ace let go of my hand and wrapped his arm around my waist.

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The car came to a stop and I glanced over at Ace who was asleep with his head resting against the top of the seat. I really didn't want to wake him due to the fact that he didn't sleep at all last night; but who could blame him. "Ace" I whispered and he didn't budge. Ice and Dante got out, leaving me to wake up Ace. "Ace" I said louder but not enough to scare him. "Ace" I gripped his shoulder, shaking him. His eyes shot open and he grabbed my wrist, squeezing it tightly. I winced in pain which seemed to snap him out of his trance. When I looked at him, his bright blue eyes were widened and dark and his expression was frightened.

Once he realised what he was doing, he immediately released his grip on my wrist. "I'm sorry I didn't-" I kissed him, interrupting his sentence. I knew he was stressed out and paranoid that his father would come back today. "It's okay" I nodded.

Thank you guys for 400k reads , it's insane to me that so many people have read my book . Ily all 💕

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