Chapter Eighteen: Part Two
“W-what do you mean?” I stuttered, fear gripping at the back of my neck. “Prince of Darkness? What are you, the devil?” I said, and then gave a fake, nervous laugh at the end. When he didn’t answer, my eyes went wide with shock. “You’re not the devil, are you?” I whispered and leaned in, as if someone could hear me.
Dre shook his head, an amused look on his face. “Of course I’m not the devil, Mel. And trust me, I’m not a demon, either.”
“Oh, thank goodness,” I sighed in relief, putting my hand over my heart. “Oh, let me guess, you’re going to say, ‘I’m far more something worse’.” I joked.
“Yes, I was going to say that,” He said gravely.
Despite the fact that I was frightened by his words as I did an actual gulp, I let out a little laugh. “Dre, stop being so dramatic. There’s nothing worse than demons and the devil. You’re being silly.”
“Fine then,” He said. “I guess we’re on the same level, then.”
I raised my eyebrow at him, getting a little frustrated with his word games. “Dre, so you’re telling me you’re as evil as the devil?” I crossed my arms over my chest, testing him. “So, you kill people in cold blood, you want to rule over the world no matter what the cost, you have no feelings, and you want the whole world to bow down and kiss your ass?” I asked sarcastically.
“Well, I don’t want to be that way, it’s just my nature. I didn’t choose to be who I am.” He said, staring at me with a pained look in his eyes. “This doesn’t change our relationship, does it?”
“Are you shitting me?” I said, now fully angry. “You must be out of your f-ing mind if you think this is funny!” I cried as I got up from my chair.
“Mel, you can’t leave,” Dre tried to stop me as I crossed over the long distance to the front door. But I wasn’t listening, I was too busy trying to yank the door on by pulling on the knob.
“You aren’t getting out,” He repeated matter-of-factly, crossing his arms over his chest and cocking his eyebrow up.
“Don’t care,” I sing-songed, still trying to rip the door open. I gave one last final tug, and accidentally ripped the knob out of the whole, sending it flying black and toppling it in front of the black staircase. “Shit…” I mumbled under my breath, feeling a little embarrassed.
“Told you,” Dre taunted, smiling as he tapped my nose with is finger.
“Whatever,” I muttered, turning away from him. “Sorry for ruining the door to your…mind.” I stuttered.
“No problem,” He said like it was no big deal, giving me a 1,000 kilowatt smile. Seeing him smile put one on my face; it had been so long since I had seen Dre genuinely happy. “Now, are you ready to listen to me?”
I rolled my eyes. “Gahh, I guess so,” I groaned before he pulled me over and kissed me on the lips.
“I missed you,” He said, and amused look in his eyes, because he knew I always became uncomfortable when people talked feelings. “You know Mel, did you know that I love you?” He said, thriving on my embarrassment.
“Stop it,” I mumbled under my breath, my cheeks turning red. “And who do you think you are, just coming over and kissing me? I’m not some…kissing whore.” I grimaced, thinking of how many times I had kissed Dre and then how many times I had kissed Ivan. Oh God…I was a kissing whore.
“So, you kissed Ivan?” Dre said accusingly, giving me a hurt look.
I backed away from him. “Well, when I walked up to you, and saw Drew in your house only wearing a shirt!” I accused, but still feeling guilty all the same.
“Did you do it?” I asked, fear feeling my voice as I backed away from him a couple more feet. “Did you…have sex with her?” I asked quietly, trying to gauge his reaction as I asked.
He frowned at me, his eyebrows drawing together. “Do you even have to ask?”
“Yes.” I said, matter-of-factly. “Well. Did you?”
“No, I didn’t,” He said angrily. “But you did kiss Ivan,” He said, and pausing a couple of seconds before saying, “Multiple times! His hands were under your shirt!” He cried.
“I messed up! Doesn’t anyone understand that I’m not perfect? I don’t know what’s wrong with me lately, okay? So can you please just give me some slack?” I said, still feeling bad as I had recalled that day.
That day, I had gone to the park and felt like I was dying. What happened to me? I had felt that way whenever I had changed into a werewolf, but that night, I hadn’t changed into a wolf. No, I had woke up in that weird space station that Ivan lived in. And Mya had said that she was glad that I was back. So, I was gone, but my parents would have said something, wouldn’t they? So, I had been away for a while, and the only person who knew it was Mya. Who—,
“Oh, and now you’re not even listening to me,” Dre’s voice cut into my thoughts. “You know, Melita, you’re missing your chance to learn about what’s going on.”
I turned back around to him, clearing my mind as I shook my head from side to side. “No, apparently, you were just yelling at me,” I said sarcastically.
“Oh, calm down,” Dre said, sounding like he was annoyed, but I know that he was slowly going back to his calm nature. He walked over to give me another kiss, but I couldn’t give up the whole Drew situation.
“Oh no, don’t touch me,” I said, backing up away from him. “I want to know why Drew was out your house. So, explain. Now.” I said, trying to him my best death stare without caving in.
“Fine,” Dre said reluctantly, giving me an exasperated look. “She came over, obviously looking for something I couldn’t give her,” he said lowly under his breath, “and she purposely spilled water on her pants so that she could take them off. So I told her to just get a t-shirt from my drawer and then she could leave.”
I suddenly felt stupid then, for ever thinking that Dre even liked Drew. Because really, she’s annoying and she tries to steal Dre away from me even though everyone knows I like him! I’m pretty sure everyone at school knew that.
“She’s gonna pay,” I muttered under my breath, feeling angry. “I mean, she’s really going to pay. She thinks she’s seen my mad; just wait ‘til I see her at school on Monday.”
“What are you going to do?” Dre asked, looking a little worried. “Mel, you know you can’t get into fights. Your parents will kill you.”
“Not before I kill her,” I said, just thinking about seeing her face on Monday. Actually, I didn’t even have to wait until Monday. I could go over to her house right now.
“Mel,” Dre cut in, waving his hand over my face to get my attention, “I don’t like that look on your face. What are you thinking?”
“I’m gonna go over to that bitch—, er, girl’s house and give her a piece of my mind,” I said. I walked over to the front door and looked out through the knob hole. I put my hand through and started yanking, trying to open the door open.
“Mel, no, you’re not going to do that!” Dre said, rushing over to me by the door.
“How do you get out of this place, anyway?” I cried, still trying desperately to open the door. “Jesus, why is your mind so complicated?”
“Because I am,” Dre said immediately, before wrapping his arms around my waist, trying to rip me away from my grip on the door. “Now stop fighting and just talk to me!” He said, still trying to rip me away from the door.
I accidentally lost my grip on the door, and he pulled me away forcefully. He lifted me above his head as I flailed back and forth, trying to get out of his iron grip. I kicked my legs in the air wildly, hoping that he would let me go, but his seize on me never loosened.
“If you don’t stop, I’m going to drop you,” He said in a no-nonsense tone, so I knew he meant what he said.
I rolled my eyes. “Fine,” I said, crossing my arms over my chest as he slowly lowered me down. “But you’re not off the hook. Not just yet.” I said once he had finally set me down.
“What?” He cried, looking at me that it was ludicrous that I had said so. “Why not?”
“Because, you’ve hid everything away from me for like, gah, I don’t know, five or six years!” I struggled to get out my words as he gave me this weird look that just wanted to make me smile. Things were getting back to normal again. Except for the whole part about Ivan…and how about 5% of me was dedicated to him, and the rest for Dre. Well, love in my heart, because I cared about my family, of course.
“Yeah, well, it wasn’t in my place to say,” He started off, but I interrupted him.
“Oh my god, why does everyone say that?!” I cried. “I seriously feel like I have dejavu or something, because so many people are saying that! Why can’t anyone just tell me the truth? It’s not going to hurt me, I promise! I’m stronger than you think!”
“Mel, I know you,” Dre started off softly, giving me a look of understanding. “But you really don’t need to know the whole story right now. I do know that you’re very strong, but I’m pretty sure if I told you, it would break you down even more.”
“Yeah right,” I said sarcastically, a little pissed that he wouldn’t tell me. “Just like how when Drew was over and your house and I broke down.” I continued on with the sarcasm.
“No, more like when I was at your house and you ran away.” He said, gently reminding me.
“Oh god, you were there, weren’t you?” I said, feeling embarrassed as I dragged my palms down my face. “I swear, sometimes I can be such a spazz,” I moaned. “And it’s even worse because I hate that word!”
Dre smiled at me. “Yeah, I know,” He gave me a thoughtful look before saying, “Are you ready to climb the stairs?”
“Ugh,” I groaned. “Do I have to? I’m not completely evil, so why should I have to walk the stairs of darkness? Is it going to turn me completely evil, like Aerial?” I asked hesitantly.
Dre shook his head. “They won’t turn you fully evil, although I’m sure that it might take up a little more space…” He confessed.
“I don’t want to be evil,” I whined, feeling a little petrified inside. “I don’t want to be anything like Aerial. She’s a…a…,” I tried to think of a word to describe her.
“A dick?” Dre substituted, seeming amused at me.
“Yeah, that!” I said, a little cautious to say that word. Usually, cussing doesn’t really bad me, but I mean, that’s a pretty bad curse word.
“I know. I met her.” He said, his expression a blank stare.
“Um, okay,” I said, a little confused by the way he looked. “Yeah, I guess I’m ready for the stairs.” I sighed.
He nudged me with his head in his neck, giving me a reassuring smile. I wanted to smile back, but I couldn’t, really. Just thinking of those stairs made me depressed. I didn’t want to be like Aerial, but look at what I was doing: becoming more and more evil like her by the second. Why couldn’t I have been good, like Arianna?
“Wait.” I stopped walking, leaving Dre to walk ahead of me.
“Nothing’s wrong. I just realized what to do,” I breathed, amazed that my small brain had come up with such an idea. “I know how to rule over the kingdom, but with someone else.” I said, walking up to Dre with an astonished look in my eyes.
“What are you talking about?” He asked. He obviously didn’t get my track of thinking.
“I can raise Arianna back from the dead like Aerial did,” I said. “Except, I’ll do it right, unlike Aerial, and then she can rule over the kingdom, instead of me.”
“But Mel,” Dre protested. “That’s not how it goes. You’re the one who’s supposed to rule, not Arianna. You shouldn’t go against the way of things, that’s—,”
“Dre, I know nothing about my own race!” I interrupted, getting excited of the prospect of not ruling over the kingdom. “And Arianna knows everything, plus she’s a four-part hybrid, too! It all works!”
“Mel,” He said, looking angrily at me as he seized me by the shoulders, “You don’t know what you’re doing. You can’t just give up your duties because you don’t want them.”
I rolled my eyes. “You’re just like Ivan, telling me I have ‘duties’. Not only is that word funny, but I don’t even know what those ‘duties’ are! No one’s telling me anything.”
It was like Dre barely heard anything besides my first sentence. “I’m nothing like Ivan. Don’t ever say that again.” He warned, a fire in his eyes. I watched, stunned, as his white shirt turned black, matching his pants. His eyes turned to that weird red again as he gave me on of his classical pissed off looks.
“There’s nothing wrong with Ivan,” I protested, but said it calmly so he would calm down with me. “Hey, he looks like Eminem, just like how Marshall does! And you like Eminem!” I said, saying anything to get him to calm down.
“Yeah, but Ivan isn’t who you think he is,” He said with a faraway look. “He’s evil Mel. And I want you to stay away me. You understand?”
“Wait, what?” I asked, feeling a little hurt as he yelled at me. “You can’t order me around, Dre. That’s not how it works. Besides, you haven’t even given Ivan a chance.” I said, but it was like the time when Marshall and I were little and I dared him to knock down the beehive on the edge of the house. The more we picked at them, the madder they became. One of them stung me in the eye, where my parents realized that I had an allergy to bees. I looked like I had the Mumps for a few days.
Oh, yeah, back on track. I swear, sometimes my mind is just a little playground, and I get so absorbed in it that I fall out of reality and into my own head. I can’t help but wonder, is that a good thing?
“I did give Ivan a chance,” Dre said through gritted teeth, giving me a version of his own death stare. “And he stabbed me in the back, that bastard.”
Bastard? That wasn’t a word that Dre used often. I mean, you don’t just walk around calling people bastards unless you’re Peter from Family Guy or something. I focused back as I said, “What do you mean he stabbed you in the back? What did he do to you?”
He sent me a look that I didn’t really understand. More often it seemed, I couldn’t read Dre’s expressions anymore. Was it an effect from Ivan or something? I didn’t want to lose my close relationship with Dre because another guy, someone who seemed as shady as Ivan. Ha, shady. Like Slim Shady, because he looked like Eminem. Stay on track! I reminded myself before I slipped too far into my thoughts again.
“That story is a small part of what I shouldn’t tell you,” He explained with a dejected look on face. “Sorry.”
“No you’re not,” I said, annoyed at him. “Or else you would tell me.”
He gave me a blank stare, but didn’t say anything. So I was right; he wasn’t sorry. He was ‘protecting’ me, or so Dre wanted to believe. But he wasn’t protecting me, he was just shielding away from the truth. If anything, he was crippling me!
“How do we get out of here?” I asked, feeling more exasperated than ever. I just wanted to go home, go to sleep, and not think about school the next day because then that would mean I would have to deal with Brite being extremely pissed at me and also the fact that I couldn’t kick Drew’s ass because then my mom would kick my ass.
“We have to exit using the stairs,” Dre said. I could tell how he was avoiding me because he knew that I was irritated with him.
I sighed. I just wanted this day to be over, seriously. “Whatever.” I said dismissively. Why was I so afraid of these stairs, anyway? So what if I turned evil; I could always revert back somehow. Right? I shook my head clear so that I wouldn’t chicken out and curl up in fetal position on the floor, crying. And no one wanted to see me cry, because trust me, I’m a very unattractive crier. I get the snot, the tears, the red puffy eyes, the whole deal.
I walked up to the first step and put my hand on the banister. It was warm, hot, burning hot like there were flames licking up around the sides. I yanked my hand back, expecting the skin to be on fire, but they were normal looking. I put my hand back on the banner, and I was sure that I could feel bugs and insects crawling underneath it, but I knew nothing was there.
“The stairs create allusions.” I heard Dre say calmly behind me, watching me walk up the stairs, close behind.
“Yeah. I figured that out.” I said dryly, resisting the urge to roll my eyes at him. I gave the long stretch of stairs above me a wary look, and swallowed my fear before finally ascending them.
A/N: So sorry for the short chapter, but I'm telling you, it all wraps together in the end! Trust me, you're gonna be glad I put it into three parts. (: