Keeping Superman’s Secret

dare to love and hate

“You could’ve gotten yourself killed!” He took one more big step forwards so his chest was almost pressing against mine. His blue eyes lit up with his anger, blazing on mine and capturing me all at once. His hair was messed up beneath his mask as if he’d been running his hands through it and it made me want to reach up and knot my own hands in it. All I could do was stay frozen under his intense gaze, trembling not in the aftermath of today’s events, but in fear that he may never forgive me. In fear that I would never see him like this again.

“Never do that again” Onyx whispered this time, his voice calming in alignment with his now softening eyes. His hand cupped my cheek, and I swear I could see his eyes begin to water. The anger that he had held seemed to fade away, and instead he pleaded with me. I nodded my head, still unable to move. He had never been this close to me before. My chest pressed against his and I could feel the rise and fall of his breath.

“Forgive me,” he whispered and before I could wonder what he meant his lips were crashing down onto mine. I froze only momentarily to ponder whether this was really happening, but as his lips moved against mine I felt my body come alive. I was kissing Onyx, he was kissing me, and it was like the whole world around us had come to a stop.

Up until now, Allison had survived her entire high school career unscathed. With less than 4 months until graduation, she’s got her life all figured out. She’s secured a stable part time job that allows her to save money for school while also working side by side with her best friend, and is already making plans to attend her dream college in the fall. But all this changes when Allison catches danger’s eye and is suddenly running into Onyx, San Fransisco’s local superhero more than she’d like to. While she was never one of the screaming fan girls begging for Onyx’s attention, Allison has caught it and now she can’t help but wonder - who’s behind the mask?

Free preview
“So it’s your last day, huh?” Kelly looked up at me over the computer screen as I packed away my stuff on the back counter. I nodded my head, “Yep, I’m officially done all my placement hours for school.” I picked up the last of my scattered papers, then finally the succulent I'd brought in and placed them into my box. I’d been volunteering at the hospital for the past few months as a part of a co-op program I was doing with my school. I’d spent my time working side by side with the nurses, and while I never got to do anything too serious, I sure got to see a lot of cool stuff. A few of the nurses had even taught me to do some simple things like removing stitches, cleaning up wounds, and giving needles. With my dream to study health sciences at the University of San Francisco in the fall, this looked great on my application. Plus, with my dad being a doctor in the ER here, this place has always felt like a second home to me. All the nurses on staff were practically already family to me, which I was grateful for since dad was never very big on our actual family, leaving it as just the two of us on most holidays. My grandmother came around sometimes, but she preferred staying home as much as possible. “We’re going to miss you so much honey,” Kelly stood from her desk and pulled me into a hug, tears threatened to spill from her eyes. She was always getting overly emotional. I could never understand how she held it together when interacting with patients as a nurse. “Kelly, come on, you’ll still see me all the time,” this I could promise her. Even if my placement was over, I loved coming here to help out whenever I could and I was hoping they would still have me. All of a sudden, the desk alarm began to sound, indicating an incoming ambulance. “Go ahead,” Kelly answered the call as the other nurses began to prepare for the incoming trauma. I quickly turned on the TV and flipped to the news channel, eager to see what was going on. My eyes widened as I watched an image of the local library flash across the screen, followed by a reporter retelling the story of a shooter targeting the local readers. And, of course, the screen flashed to show Onyx, the city’s elusive superhero and his side kick Blaze circling the building in the sky. Superhero’s had been protecting San Fransisco for as long as I could remember, and the entire city raved about them. In my opinion, though, they were only attracting more trouble for our city. The criminals were getting smart, more sneaky and, therefore , the entire city was only being put in more danger. Plus, whoever the superheroes really were, they probably had huge egos thanks to their roaring fan clubs. Onyx had been around for a few years now, and girls everywhere swooned at the simple mention of his name. While there were some other superheroes around, such as his partner Blaze, they never made the news quite as often. Leaving Onyx as the main target of the female population's obsession. Not that anyone stood a chance with a superhero, people hardly got close enough to see them clearly, and if you did, it was because they were saving you from danger and you’d be way too rushed with adrenaline to properly comprehend anything about them. No one had ever known any of the superhero’s identities, but it never stopped them from guessing. “We have a shooting victim!” Kelly called out, finishing her conversation with the incoming ambulance. I so wasn’t ready to leave yet. I dropped my box and hurried to help gather supplies before the ambulance arrived. After a few hours of trying to help the busy nurses, the victim went off to surgery and I returned to my packed box. Picking the box up, I said my final goodbyes and headed my way down the back hall towards my exit. Walking out into the fresh air, I took a deep breath and looked up at the stars, enjoying the view. Not paying attention, I continued walking forwards to my car, suddenly bumping shoulders with a stranger. “I’m so sorry” I mumbled, hurrying to turn my attention to my opponent. Only to be faced with a man wearing a dark hood, his hand clutching his lower abdomen, with fresh blood tainting his palm. “Oh my god you’re shot!” I screamed, quickly rushing towards him and pressing my hands against the wound to slow the bleeding. “Hel-“ I began to shout out but his other hand quickly covered my lips and it was then that I realized that this man wasn’t just anyone, but someone with a secret, with a black and silver mask covering his face. “Onyx,” I breathed, immediately recognizing him from the images that had been plastered all over the news over the past few years. Wearing all black today, the top of his suit was replaced with a black baggy hoodie. He pulled me into the tight corridor with him. “No one can know I’m here,” his voice was low and harsh as he whispered to me. My breath caught as I met his blazing blue eyes that glowed even in the dimmed lighting around us. His hand slowly came from my mouth, freeing me, but I stayed frozen in shock. I didn’t know he could get shot, rumours had always said he was bulletproof. Yet, here he stood, the blood seeping from his chest and I wondered if it was related to the victim of the attack earlier. “What are you doing here?” I mumbled, not moving my hands from the source of the blood. I'd never seen him at the hospital before, not that I'd ever seen him before at all. He looked at me, his eyes tracing over my face for a moment, before he looked down to his wound once more. “I was shot,” he stated blatantly, and I blushed beet red. Obviously he was shot, you’re holding your hand over his wound stupid. “Look, can you just take this bullet out for me so I can go?” He said, fidgeting on his feet as if he were already impatient. What was he doing over here anyway? The emergency entrance is on the other side of the building. “I’m not a nurse, but if we go over to the ER-“ I began. “We can’t go to the ER,” he cut me off again. “Too many people. I need you to do it, no one else can know I’m here.” My eyes widened but he stared at me dead serious. “I can’t take a bullet out,” I rushed to say. “Sure you can,” he grabbed my wrist and pulled me forwards. Giving me no choice but to rush after him, following behind him as he led me back into the hospital. He pulled me into an empty room just inside the doors as if he’d known exactly where to go. “Go get one of those kits with the tweezers and stuff,” he commanded, and feeling compelled to listen, I practically ran to the supply room. Is this a dream? It had to be. There's no way this is really happening. There's no way there's a superhero at the hospital. There's no way he was talking to me, expecting me to pull a literal bullet from his chest. “What are you doing Allison,” I mumbled to myself as I grabbed the kit and hurried back to the room where I’d left him. When I walked back in, he was already lying on the exam table, the bottom of his hoodie pulled up to reveal the bleeding wound. I stepped towards him slowly, then placed the kit on an empty table and opened it up. “I can’t do this, we should get a doctor,” I mumbled again, feeling my fear build again. “Allison, take the damn bullet out. As soon as it’s out, I’ll heal” He rubbed his hands over his face and I took a moment to look over his body, recognizing that this may be the only time I would ever see him this close. He had messy dark hair that complimented his perfectly angled jaw, and what I could only imagine as perfect cheekbones beneath the silk of his mask. His bare stomach was chiseled with abs that I knew I would have been drooling over if they weren't splattered with blood. Allison now is not the time to be checking him out! I screamed at myself in my head and jerked my attention back to the wound. I moved the tweezers towards the wound, then panic built up again. “What if it doesn’t heal?” “It will,” he assured me again, his eyes focused now on the ceiling above. The confidence in his voice was unwavering. “But how can you know that? I mean you’re supposed to be bullet proof, right? and now here you are lying on an exam table with a bullet in your chest. I mean how does that even happen to someone that’s bullet proof,” I rambled on and his eyes suddenly jerked to me again. “Agh Allison! There is a literal bullet in my abdomen and it HURTS, take it out!” He yelled this time, his voice coming much louder and if this were any other ordinary day I probably would have jumped back in fear. But this day wasn’t normal anymore, because there was a superhero in front of me, and he was really being an ass now. The adrenaline coursed through my veins, giving me fire. “How do you even know my name?” I got frustrated with him right back and he narrowed his eyes on me. A chill ran down my spine but I did my best to hide it. I wanted him to believe he doesn't phase me, not one bit. “You’re wearing a name tag, now take. Out. The. Bullet.” He said slowly, gritting his teeth. My eyes shot down to the ID badge I’d warn that still clung to my top and I couldn’t help but blush bright red. I had entirely forgotten that it was still on. “Well maybe I don’t want to, and you’re being a bit of a jerk, so why should I help you?” I spat back at him. And to my surprise, he leaned his head back on the exam table, his eyes shifting back to the ceiling. He took a deep breath and ran his hand through his messy hair and I couldn’t help but watch as the muscles in his arms flexed. He closed his eyes for a moment, then when he turned back to me he opened them, revealing a much softer blue. “I’m sorry for being rude. I’m just having a rough night, and I shouldn’t take that out on you. Now, will you please, for the love of god, take this bullet out,” he pleaded with me, and I felt a warm feeling stir in my stomach. “Fine” I grumbled, stepping forwards again. I willed myself to stay calm as I clamped the tweezers around the bullet and pulled back quickly. Onyx squeezed his eyes shut, groaning as the bullet was freed from his skin, and, like magic, the second the bullet was removed the skin around it began to heal, the bleeding coming to a halt. The edges of the wound closed quickly, leaving the skin perfectly intact, as if nothing had ever happened. “No way,” I mumbled, watching in awe. Then turning my attention to the bullet, I admired it’s orange sparkle, it looked different than any other bullet I’d ever seen before. “What is this?” I wondered out loud. “Monazite, it’s a rare mineral” Onyx said, sitting up on the table and pulling his hoodie back down to cover his torso. I dropped the bullet into a plastic bag and just as I was about to throw it in the waste bin, he scooped it from my hands. “No way, I’ll take that,” I shrugged my shoulders and cleaned up the rest of the table. Turning to him, I noticed he’d pulled the hood of his sweater back up over his head, concealing more of his face now. “Ready to go?” He asked me and I nodded my head, this time leading him out to the exit. “Are you following me? What do you think you're doing?” I asked, noticing as he followed me down the walkway outside towards my car. I turned back to see him strolling casually with his hands in his pockets. “Walking you to your car?” He replied as if he were confused, which only made me more confused. Why would he be walking me to my car? I was perfectly fine walking on my own. “I’m a superhero, it’s what I do,” he then had the nerve to smirk at me and I rolled my eyes. This was getting ridiculous. Reaching my car, I pulled the driver’s door open and he closed his hand around the top. “Thanks for taking my bullet out Allison,” he flashed me a smile that I was sure broke every girl's heart, and I grumbled back “you’re welcome”. Although I was still feeling a pretty strong rush of adrenaline pumping through my veins. I had just pulled a real bullet out of someone’s body and then watched him heal right in front of my eyes. He leaned in, his hand suddenly touching my cheek as he pulled my eyes up to meet his. The touch was all too intimate, and normally I would have jumped away but the sparks it sent down my cheek held me captive. I watched as the blue in his eyes lit up brighter again. “You won’t remember this,” he mumbled, and I quickly shook his hand away. “Are you kidding? That was like a once in a lifetime thing, I just pulled a bullet out of your abdomen. Do you have any idea how freaking cool that is? Of course I’m going to remember it!” I let my excitement out and Onyx jumped back from me surprised. He looked me over, the strangest look in his eyes, almost as if he were afraid. A quiet beep broke our silence and he quickly looked down at his watch. “I have to go. Allison, you can’t tell anyone about tonight. Please, I wasn’t here. I wasn’t shot. Nothing happened. You left the hospital and went home, that’s it,” he begged me, and I looked him over one last time, taking this moment in. “I would never tell,” I whispered back, and I meant it. Not only was this about patient confidentiality, but this was one of our city's greatest superheroes and he had been injured. That couldn’t be good for anyone. “Thank you,” he said, then closed the door of my car and backed away. I looked down only for a moment to put my keys in the ignition. The engine roared to life, and when I turned my attention back to the parking lot in front of me, he was gone. Once back at home, I warmed up some leftovers for dinner and began working on my laundry for the night. I was back to school tomorrow and already knew I’d have no clean underwear left if I kept putting this off. So I popped in my headphones, turned on some music and sang along as I finished my cleaning up for the evening. “I know that there’s time that you get so tired, and I want you to staaay” I sang along, swaying my hips as I hung up my clean laundry in my closet. “Don’t stay for me,” I hummed, then all of a sudden gentle hands were pulling the AirPods from my ears. I jumped backwards yelling out and twirling so fast I made myself dizzy only to be faced with the last person I expected to be in my bedroom this late at night. Maybe I expected my dad, my best friend Joey, or maybe even a robber, but that last person I had expected to see was here - Onyx. ----------------------------------------------------- Hi readers! Just wanted to say thanks for checking out this book! I have made a playlist to coincide with this book and wanted to post it here so that it would be free for everyone to access. There is one song for each chapter of the book. To get access to the Spotify mix, please find the link here; h****://open.spotify.com/playlist/1Ogl8rV5qLlG3krDj6l43U?si=zq2yZ5H_SZaTWplDMx_1qw or on my social media pages (Ally Parker on f******k, or AllyParkerstories on instagram). If you don't wish to see the list of songs, skip to chapter 2. The list of songs is as follows; 1. Don't Stay by X Ambassadors 2. 3 AM by Relic 3. June, After Dark by Elliot Root 4. Walls by Quinn XCII 5. Stranger by X Ambassadors 6. Way Down We Go by KALEO 7. Naked by X Ambassadors 8. Free & Lonely by X Ambassadors 9. Wildflower by The National Parks 10. Superman by We Three 11. No Right to Love You by Rhys Lewis 12. Superpower by X Ambassadors 13. In Your Arms by Illenium 14. All We Ever Knew by The Head and The Heart 15. Sweet Disaster by DREAMERS 16. The Idea of You by Grady 17. Take it from me by KONGOS 18. Secrets by We Three 19. San Francisco by The Mowgli's 20. Troublemaker by Grizfolk 21. Undeniable by Kygo 22. Waiting for You by Grizfolk 23. Polaroid by Imagine Dragons 24. Shadows by X Ambassadors 25. Brother by X Ambassadors 26. Optimistic by X Ambassadors 27. Don't worry, you will by lovelytheband 28. I'm Good by The Mowgli's 29. Let Go by BANNERS 30. Better Days by Dermot Kennedy 31. You're Somebody Else by Flora Cash 32. Gorgeous by X Ambassadors 33. Alter Ego by KALEO 34. Love Songs Drug Songs by X Ambassadors 35. Mess Me Up by Neon Trees 36. Take it All Back by Judah & the Lion 37. I Walk on Water by KALEO 38. Hoping by X Ambassadors 39. She's Out Of Her Mind by Blink-182 40. Can We Hang On? By Cold War Kids 41. Kerosene Dreams by X Ambassadors 42. RULE by X Ambassadors 43. Sanctuary by Welshley Arms 44. With Me All Along by Bronze Radio Return 45. HOLD YOU DOWN by X Ambassadors 46. Novocaine by The Unlikely Candidates 47. With Me by Sum 41 48. Belong by X Ambassadors 49. Next to You by John Vincent III 50. Knives by Metoma 51. Days Like This by Dermot Kennedy 52. I Want More by KALEO 53. Don't Fade by Vance Joy 54. I Found Out by The Head and The Heart 55. Save Yourself by KALEO 56. WHERE WE ARE by The Lumineers 57. Nobody else by LANY 58. Torches by X Ambassadors 59. Broken Bones by KALEO 60. Start a Riot by BANNERS 61. Shine a Light by BANNERS 62. Misty by Caamp 63. Unsteady by X Ambassadors 64. Deep Water by American Authors 65. Like Gold by Vance Joy 66. Darkness by Bronze Radio Return 67. HARD LOVE by NEEDTOBREATHE 68. Meet Me in the Woods by Lord Huron 69. American Oxygen by X Ambassadors 70. Pieces by Matoma 71. No Good by Harry Hudson 72. Okay by X Ambassadors 73. Favourite Place to Go by Layup 74. Restless by Cold War Kids 75. Some Kind of Love by The Killers 76. Stolen Car by X Ambassadors 77. Automobile by KALEO 78. Eye of the Storm by X Ambassadors 79. Brother Run Fast by KALEO 80. I Can't Go on Without You by KALEO 81. Not Easy by X Ambassadors 82. Strawberries by Caamp

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