Staying behind to lock his and Kit’s bus, Noah went over to one of the bodyguards. “Did anyone else come this way? Anyone with a camera? Crew or others who might’ve seen what happened?”
The tall, heavyset former wrestler shook his head. “No one. I saw the woman and that fuckwit head down from the party tent, and I kept an eye on them since they were cutting through your area. Seemed like they started arguing a few feet from your bus, then they were in the shadows and heading away from this section.” His jaw went grim. “I didn’t see him hit her or I would’ve intervened—counts as an emergency in my book.”
“Abe was about a minute behind them. I heard the sound of his voice and then he hauled the other guy back to slam him against your bus.” Touching a finger to his earpiece, the guard said, “We’ve got some partiers coming this way. I’ll head them off.”
Leaving him to it, Noah stepped inside Fox’s bus and pulled the door shut. He couldn’t see any of the women, realized they must be in the bedroom. Abe was pacing across the small distance of the living area, his anger as hot now as it had been outside. “The bastard fucking hit Sarah,” he said, his voice trembling with rage. “You should’ve let me turn him into paste.”
“Yeah, and watch your ass rot in jail.” Shoving a hand through his hair, Noah held Abe’s furious eyes. “I would’ve done the same thing, man.”
Fox’s and David’s immediate agreement seemed to take some of the steam out of Abe. Shuddering, he rubbed his face with both hands. “Can you check she’s okay?”
David went and tapped lightly on the closed bedroom door. Thea appeared in the doorway a second later and, pulling it half-shut, came with David. She was dressed in a just-above-knee-length robe in silky blue-gray tied securely over her nightgown, her feet bare and her face naked. Regardless, she was fully armed and ready to do what needed to be done.
“Sarah’s okay,” Thea said to Abe just as Molly exited the bedroom.
“Fox,” she said, “could you grab some ice from the party tent? We need it for her bruises.”
“On it.” Fox left at once while Molly went to make Sarah a cup of tea.
“Sarah doesn’t want to press charges,” Thea added, “and that’s her choice. I’ll keep a record of everything in case Vance ever decides to make trouble.”
“Has the bastard got her stuff?” Abe said suddenly. “Sarah always carries a purse. I didn’t see anything on her.”
Noah frowned. “Hold on.” Stepping outside, he looked carefully around until he located the spot of shine that had caught his eye as he came in. It was a sequined red clutch. Grabbing the slender thing, he took it inside. “Here.”
Abe took it, and for a second, the big guy looked shaken and vulnerable and lost. “She’s weird when she doesn’t have her purse. It’s like her security blanket.”
Tugging it gently from his grip, Thea took it to Sarah.
Fox returned half a minute later with ice in a large glass that Molly wrapped up in a hand towel and took into the bedroom.
“Okay,” Thea said when she and Molly returned to the living area of the bus, “tell me what happened so we can figure out what someone might’ve seen, what kind of story they might sell to the tabloids.”
“Vance was in a black mood,” Abe said flatly. “I could see it, decided to follow to make sure she was okay. Then he hit her.”
“Did anyone see you leave?” Thea asked, her eyes on her phone.
Abe rubbed his face again. “I don’t know. I wasn’t paying attention.”
“Jim—one of the bodyguards—says he wasn’t followed,” Noah told Thea. “I don’t think this’ll hit the tabloids.”
“If it does, I’m going to spin it as jealousy, two men fighting over a woman.” Thea’s tone brooked no argument. “Sarah stays under until her face heals. I will not have her further abused, this time by the media.”
“She can stay here tonight,” Molly said softly. “Fox and I left the party early, so we’ve already had a couple of hours of sleep.” She leaned into Fox’s embrace as the lead singer stroked her hair.
“We’ll make sure she gets home,” Fox said. “And that she has someone with her.”
Thea nodded as Molly pressed a kiss to Fox’s jaw before going to pick up the tea she’d left to steep. “I better take this to her. She’s still shocky.”