I had to admit, when I saw Nate throw a punch at Tyler I felt a sick sense of satisfaction that I wasn't the only one who despised the jerk. But things quickly began to get serious as Nate now held a broken beer bottle and Tyler was waving a stick of fire about like a caveman. Half of me was tempted to go in and help Nate, but I knew it wasn't my fight.
'Bring it,' Nate inveigled.
Jade rushed forward and I instantly knew what a big mistake she had made. The look in Tyler's eyes, mixed with his obvious intoxication, meant that he wasn't to be messed with right now. He was too caught up in the fight, ready and waiting for danger. He cursed at Jade and shoved her aside. I rushed by her side, helping her off the broken glass she had fallen onto.
Scooping her up easily into my arms, I took her away from the fight with Stewart following close behind. Jade was close to tears and I ignored the flare of anger I felt towards Tyler. Hopefully Nate will deal with him.
'Come on Jade,' I smiled. 'Try and hold back your tears you brave little girl.'
She tried to laugh at my patronizing tone. 'Don't mock me Charlie. You can put me down now.'
'In this state? Good heavens Jade! What kind of a man do you take me for?'
She made a sort of hmphh noise before accepting her fate and folding her arms. I followed Stewart up off the beach and set Jade down on the grass behind one of the beach huts. It was a lot darker here and we couldn't see the damage that the glass had done, but Stewart tried to illuminate our surroundings with his phone.
'Well you've definitely got glass stuck in there. Want me to try and pick it out? I have some tweezers with me.'
'Why do you have tweezers?' I snorted.
'You never know.'
I raised my eyebrows but said no more.
'No,' Jade shook her head vigorously. 'It's gonna hurt.'
'I can't promise that it won't... but it's either this or the hospital. There's only a few pieces and they're shallow. Come on Jade, be brave.'
She heaved a sigh. 'Fine. Just get it over and done with.'
We spent the next ten minutes or so carefully picking bits of broken glass out of Jade's skin, her wincing with each pinch, the grip she had on my hand tightening. When Stewart had finished, she sagged with relief. I ran to a nearby shop to get some medical supplies (painkillers and bandages - painkillers because Jade is a complete wuss).
'Are you sure it won't get infected?' she fretted.
'It shouldn't do...' Stewart replied doubtfully.
'Right, I'll be back in a second.' I stood up.
'Where are you going?'
'I'm just gonna go beat the shit out of Tyler, it shouldn't take too long.'
'NO!' Stewart and Jade's protest coincided with one another. Stewart jumped up to grab my arm. Jade took a little longer, but the effort was still there.
'That is the last thing that you are going to do! The psycho had a stick of fire for crying out loud!'
'I know Stew. But he hurt Jade.' I jogged off, silently preparing myself for my confrontation with Tyler. I was incredibly protective of those who were close to me and the fact that he had caused Jade so much pain made me want to return the favour back to him. Stewart was right, Tyler was a definite psycho, but this didn't stop me. In fact, I was in the mind-set that nothing was going to stop me.
Until I saw the pier.
I stopped in my tracks. Stewart and Jade stopped beside me, staring ahead.
Giant, orange flames roared ferociously up the wood, disintegrating it into ash. The heat was astounding, even standing here it felt like an oven. A group of people, presumably trying to put it out, had decided that they should get help and they ran off in a completely separate direction to us. All I could do was stand in absolute awe and horror at the scene before me. My friends were doing the exact same.
No one could move.
Which, I suppose, is how the police caught us.