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"He's not worth it, Jake, let it go!"

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I clicked my tongue when I realized who Jake and Charles were talking to. That explained why Jake seemed so rattled. The Vulture.

Reluctantly approaching them to put an end to whatever stupid things he was saying to my friends, I sighed as I embraced myself for it. Jake looked over his shoulder to me just as the Vulture started laughing out loud, almost evilly.

“Take that back” Jake was saying, his jaw tight and his hands into fists.

“What’s going on here?” I asked, even if only Boyle acknowledged my presence by glancing at me.

“Never” Replied the Vulture, smug about whatever he had just said. Probably something annoying and disgusting.

“I said take that back” It was rare to see Jake being so serious and… angry.

“What are you gonna do, stupid? Arrest me?” The Vulture laughed sarcastically. “You know you can’t do that, and I meant what I said about-”

The Vulture had been smirking at me, but before he could finish his sentence, Jake had punched him straight in the face.

“Jake!!!” I yelped, immediately going to hold him by the arm in case he wanted to hit him again.

“You wanna say that again?” He shouted, barely even paying attention to Charles and me as we struggled to hold him back.

“Jake, stop!! What are you doing?!” Whatever the Vulture said, it must have been something serious, he probably insulted someone from the 99 or something.

“He had it coming a long time ago” As Jake spoke, I looked at the Vulture. He held his jaw tight, but that stupid smug smirk lingered on his lips even if he was bleeding a little.

“Look” I placed both my hands against Jake’s chest, pushing him back and only then managing to gather his attention as his eyes landed on me. “He’s not worth it, Jake, let it go!”

I mentally begged for him to let it be. I had never seen him like that, and I was honestly worried, I didn’t even know where to start to calm him down. And it was making me nervous to see him in such a state.

Jake pursed his lips, glaring at him. His brown eyes were usually filled with kindness, but then they were filled with an anger I never thought he could possess.

Jake rested his hands against mine, wrapping them and gently lifting them off him. His hands were shaking and his chest raised up and down with his heavy breathing.

“I need some fresh air” Was all he said, in a shaky voice as well, immediately walking outside without making eye contact again. I jumped a little when he slammed the door on his way out.

Charles and I exchanged a quick glance, deciding to give our friend a moment alone to cool off. Then I sighed to contain myself when that obnoxious laughter was heard again.

“Shut up” I said to the Vulture. “You’re an asshole, serves you right”

“Then why’d you stop him, sweetheart?”

“Because I don’t want my friend getting in trouble over someone that isn’t worth his time”

“Burn!” Charles backed me up, earning glares from the Vulture before he left too.

I got a little angry too, but focused on calming myself as I turned to my friend.

“You think Jake’s okay?” I was genuinely concerned about him, and my heart still raced from witnessing such an unexpected scene. It was so violent and so unlike him…

“Yeah, don’t worry” He nodded. “Just give him a minute”

I looked through the window, watching how Jake clutched his hand as he paced up and down. He looked restless, but definitely not as rattled.

“Charles, what happened?” I gravely asked, knowing Jake wouldn’t hit him just because, it had to be something important.

Boyle sighed, pausing and averting his gaze before he looked at me again. I stared at him in silent inquiry, insisting to know.

“The Vulture saw you and… Well, he said some bad words”

“What? Bad words? That doesn’t make sense”

“I mean that… He called you something ugly and… Well, he said some disgusting things about you, he was making me angry too”

I gawked at Charles, shocked at what I was hearing. He frowned at my reaction.

“Jake got so worked up… over me? He was protecting me?” While I knew how much he cared about all of us, I never expected him to get so angry over someone saying bad things about me of all people.

Charles only confirmed my words with a head nod. We didn’t say anything else, but we both glanced at Jake outside as our friend quit his pacing and leaned his butt against the hood of a police car.

I knew Jake once actually punched one of his idols after he insulted Captain Holt, but me? I just was in a loss of words.

*

I felt his eyes on me as I silently sat there with him. The tension was palpable while I rummaged through my brain trying to think of something to say.

“You okay?” I gulped, carefully watching his reaction.

“Yeah…” Jake sighed, massaging his hand. “Sorry about that”

“It’s okay, I’m sure it’s not the first time someone hits that jerk” I joked to lighten the mood, which worked as Jake softly chuckled.

“Still, I shouldn’t have gotten so angry…” He refused to look into my eyes even if I was staring. I wondered if I should confess to him that Charles told me what the Vulture said, that I knew.

“Does it hurt?” I carefully reached out to his hand as he kept clutching it, but he moved them out of my reach.

“I’m fine, it’s nothing…” His tone was now so… defeated.

“Jake, let me see your hand”

“No, don’t worry about me, Y/N”

“I said, let me see!”

“I’m fine!”

I sternly took ahold of his hands, maybe too tightly, because he hissed in pain when I squeezed his knuckles. I did too, mumbling an apology. I gingerly pressed my fingers against his knuckles, feeling for any broken bones.

“I… Sorry that you had to see that” He piped up to my surprise. “I… Don’t want you to see me any differently”

I observed him, and just then he slowly locked eyes with me. There was an apologetic look in them, as well as an incredibly vulnerable one. I gave him my softest one in return.

“What did he even say to you?” I decided to play dumb and see if he told me. “I’ve never seen you so mad…”

“He just… It made my blood boil” Jake grit his teeth, then shaking his head as to disminish it. “I couldn’t think clearly, but I still feel terrible about it”

“Yeah, it was so violent… A little scary too” I honestly got a little frightened after seeing him like that.

“I’m so sorry, Y/N, I shouldn’t…” He sighed, reminding me that my hands were still over his when he put his good one over mine. “I still shouldn’t have lost my temper”

I couldn’t help myself and I threw my arms around his neck, holding him tight to show him I wasn’t actually afraid of him. It just took me by surprise, but I appreciated that his protective side came out to defend me.

“It’s okay” I smiled when his hands slowly rested over my back. “You’re entitled to lose your temper every once in a while, you’re always so sweet”

“Thanks for being so cool about it”

“I mean… Especially if it’s to defend my honor while I’m not there to do it myself”

Jake gently broke the hug, his eyes wide as he stared at me. I pursed my lips not to smile as I watched the realization grow in his expression.

“Boyle…” He said in feigned anger.

I chuckled at his outrage and kissed him in the cheek to thank him.