Chapter 7:

Chapter 7 - Haunting

Blondie (On Hiatus)


Ayame stood frozen under his piercing stare, blood running cold. Her wide eyes bore into the man who had robbed her of her youth, smiling back at her as if he wasn't the one responsible for those years of pain. Panic began to cloud her mind, but the two children were oblivious to their father's past actions, innocently beaming as they clung to her arms.

The man finally turned away, smiling down at the pair.

“Why don’t you play on the swings while I thank the nice people who found you?” He pointed, his deep voice sickeningly sweet- the same tone he had used on her when she was their age. "I'll come right over to give you a push!"

"Okay!" The young siblings let go of the blonde, dashing towards the swing set, oblivious to his intentions.

Kuroo glanced down at Ayame, his eyes widening at how the color had seemingly drained from her face. He wasn't sure what, but something was going on between them. He stepped in front of the girl, his larger frame blocking her own.

”Hey, I’m Kuroo Tetsuro." His voice was unnaturally polite, a forced tone Ayame had never heard him use before. "I’m glad we were able to find your kids and bring them back safely.”

“Name's Saiko Omani. Thank you for finding my little angels!” He extended his hand to Kuroo, shaking it with an iron grip that matched the rest of his appearance.

Saiko was big and bulky, contrasting most Japanese men. His hair was dark and unruly, visible on his knuckles, and his eyes were black holes that Ayame couldn’t seem to break away from.

Ayame's blonde hair slightly peeked out from Kuroo's shoulder as she clutched at his shirt with a tightly balled fist, a sea of questions filling her thoughts.

What's he doing here- and now of all times?

Are those really even his kids?

Is he doing the same things to them?

“So, little Miss Ayame-chan! How’s your mother~?” His voice was deceptively friendly, feigning innocence that she knew he lacked.

Her mouth went dry.

Ayame couldn’t speak, her tongue feeling like lead and her throat starting to close up. She couldn’t handle the sight of him, the disgusting sound of his voice.

“Are you alright, little Miss Ayame-chan? Cat got your tongue?” Saiko’s patronizing voice rang out once more.

Kuroo stared at the man, his unease and suspicion growing by the moment. He had to get her out of there. Forcing a casual smile, he turned to wrap an arm around the girl's shoulders.

“Sorry Saiko-san, it was nice meeting you, but we've gotta go. I’m glad we were able to help your kids.”

He ignored Kuroo, moving to stand in front of Ayame.

“Aww, there's no need to be so shy! Let me take a look at you- it’s been so long~!“

“We really need to get going!” Kuroo interrupted, a scowl taking over his expression.

“Kid, this doesn’t concern you.” The man spat, growing annoyed with his attempts to end the interaction. Ayame felt her heart sink to her stomach. Where they stood in the seemingly empty park, there was no one to intervene. Kenma was nowhere to be found, and the two small children were off in their own world. Saiko was still dangerous. He had hurt her plenty of times before, and would probably happily do it again.

But she couldn't let Kuroo get injured on her behalf.

Not after everything he had done for her.

The blonde slowly slipped out from underneath his arm and stepped forward to face Saiko, the familiar fear of her youth quickly returning. It drilled at her brain and body, anxiety coursing through her veins, her skin growing clammy.

Saiko's hand reached towards her, and she flinched- something that alarmed Kuroo.

“Wow, look at you! You've gotten so big! You’re even more beautiful than your mother! You must have to fight off the boys with a stick~!”

She stood rooted to the spot as the man's large calloused hand brushed against her cheek, a gesture he did all too often when he had finished with her. But as quickly as it came, the rough hand left her face, and she was tugged backwards.

“What the hell do you think you’re doing?!“ Kuroo glared at the man, his golden eyes flashing threateningly.

Ayame gasped as she landed against his chest, his warm arms encompassing her like a protective blanket. Her heart seemed to skip a beat.

“Oh, is she your girlfriend? My bad. I was under the impression that you two were just friends- nothing more.” Saiko shrugged, a condescending smirk on his face.

“And I was under the impression that you don't creep on teenage girls- guess I was wrong. My bad." Kuroo retorted. "We'll be leaving now.“ Ayame could hear the pounding of his heart from how close she was to him, her cheek pressed against his chest.

He looked down at her, his eyes gentle.

“Let’s go."

The girl nodded, her eyes downcast as he grabbed her hand. It was warm and comforting, contrasting the disgusting and greedy roughness of the men who had previously touched her.

"You..." Saiko growled.

"Papa! Come push us higher!" Kazusa yelled from the swing set.

"I'll be right there!" He shouted, before turning back, obviously aggravated. "Whatever. You must be feeling pretty damn lucky. Can't wait to see you again and talk one-on-one, little miss Ayame-chan~"

Kuroo didn't look back as he dragged her away from the perverted man, gritting his teeth.

Why didn't he get her out of there sooner? Why did he try to play it cool for as long as he did?

He silently cursed himself for not acting sooner, but now, it was better to find Kenma and get the hell out.

The captain tightly gripped Ayame's hand, who struggled to keep up. He scanned the area for the setter, soon spotting the blond of his hair in the distance. He was playing on his PSP, leaning against the volleyball that he had stuffed into his hood. Ayame's sketchbook was tucked under his arm.

“Kenma! We’re leaving!”

“Finally...” The boy muttered, standing up from a bench, following the two out the park. Glancing up from his PSP, he quickly noticed Ayame's pale, bleak face.

“Ayame? What happened?” His eyebrows knit together in concern, but the girl only grabbed his hand, squeezing it.

“I'll tell you later...” She whispered.

She just wasn't ready yet.


The walk home was quiet, with Kenma being reserved, Kuroo upset with himself, and Ayame trapped in her own head, drowning in her thoughts.

The girl found herself unable to let go of Kuroo's hand, gripping it tighter then she ever had. He had come to her aid yet again, defending her from one of her past abusers. Who knows what would've happened if she had been alone? Ayame didn't want to think about that, her head pounding and chest tightening.

Kenma approached the house first, pulling out his key and unlocking the front door.

As she staggered inside, the girl's knees finally buckled. Her body felt like lead, growing heavier by the second.

"Woah, Ayame!" Kuroo barely caught her around the waist, his eyes wide. “What happened? Hey! Are you okay!?”

Ayame hyperventilated, horrible memories of that man flashing through her mind, one after the other. Her back seemed to itch and burn as she cried, clawing at her shoulders and wheezing as she struggled to breathe.

Kuroo was frozen in place, staring down at the blonde.

He didn’t know what to do. How could he even help her? It was agonizing to see her in such distress.

Kuroo lowered her to the ground, stepping back as Kenma rushed over to wrap his arms around her. Kneeling in the genkan, he pulled her to his chest. The boy swayed slightly, gently running his fingers through her hair.

“It’s alright, Ayame, he won’t hurt you anymore. I’m here.”

She sobbed into his shoulder, that terrifying memory of the origin of her scars just as vivid as the sound of the belt snapping, just as real as the blood that spilled from her back.

“Ayame, it’s alright, I'm here...we're here.” The setter's voice was quiet and soothing.

Too afraid to touch her again, Kuroo went off to get her a glass of water, standing away from the pair.

The scene before him broke his heart to pieces. The once feisty and standoffish girl was breaking again, utterly hopeless and vulnerable.

Kenma continued to do his best to comfort her as she slowly calmed down. Kuroo handed her the water and she took it, hiccuping while sipping it. Her caramel eyes were bloodshot and red, still watery.

Kenma gently gripped his shoulders, looking right into her eyes. Ayame stared up at him, confused, but his voice was filled with conviction.

“He won't do anything to you ever again, I promise.”

Ayame looked away, shaking her head.

“It’s too late for that, you know…” She rubbed her eyes, pulling away. “I’m sorry you had to see me like this...”

Before Kenma or Kuroo could respond, a loud ringtone echoed throughout the house. It sounded as if it were nearby.

Ayame scrambled to her feet, running into the kitchen, her eyes darting around until they spotted something on the counter. She grabbed her phone, her heart still racing, and her head and throat sore from crying.

The sight of the caller ID made her heart skip a beat. Hurriedly dashing into the bathroom and slamming the door shut, she stared down at her notifications as the ringing momentarily stopped.

5 missed calls

17 unread messages

The girl's hand trembled as the phone rang once again, her mother’s contact flashing across the cracked screen once again. She hesitated, before her thumb weakly pressed the answer button.

“H-Hello..?” She cleared her throat.

“Ayame!" Nadia scolded, causing her to jerk away from the speaker. "Where have you been?! The house is a pigsty! You're due to clean it today!”

“I'm sorry, I’ll be back soon- I’m getting ready to leave now!”

“Are you kidding me?! You think that changes anything?! You run off whenever you feel like it, leaving a fucking mess behind, only to come back with nothing!”

The girl fell silent. The woman on the other end, however, continued ranting.

“You’re lucky to even have a roof over your head- do you understand that much?! When I was your age, if I were to disappear on a whim, I would've been locked out for a week!" Nadia snapped. "Be back before I leave, or I’ll personally ensure that you won’t run off anymore!”

"...Okay." Tears freely flowed down Ayame's face, her legs wobbling as she struggled to keep her composure. Her father's voice suddenly resurfaced.

“Take care of your mother, alright?”

Nadia hung up with a click, the line going dead.

Ayame stood there numbly, her grip slackening, though she did nothing to stop it. Her phone hit the floor just before she did, burying her face in her hands and crying out.

Kuroo threw open the door, seeing her crumpled in a heap. He dropped to the ground, bringing her to his chest, just like Kenma had done before. He allowed her to sob for a moment, soaking his jacket in tears. She suddenly stopped, shoving him away.

Ayame needed to leave- immediately.

“I...I have to go...” The blonde quickly got up, picking up her phone as she tore out the room, tripping by the door. Kenma was there in a flash, helping her up.

“Ayame, what's wrong? What hap-”

“I’m sorry- I have to go, thanks for everything." Her voice was hoarse. "I’ll see you at school.” She was exhausted, looked like a mess, and everything hurt, but she couldn’t stay any longer.

“Wait!" He tried to stop her, reaching for her shoulder.

Kenma's hand only closed around air as Ayame dashed out the door, taking off down the street. Soon, the girl was gone, disappearing around the corner.

"I’m sorry Papa- I couldn’t protect Momma.”


Hey uh sorry I haven’t updated in like two months I’ve been going through some stuff and school has been kicking my ass.

But this would not have been made possible without my best friend who really really made this chapter so much better along with all the other ones. 

But right now I’m doing my best to write as much as I can. Since I'm rewriting this entire novel from scrap again I hope you all can be patient with me .

Well enough of that I hope you enjoyed this chapter and let me know what you think.

Stay safe loves 💖

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