“Scarlett!” I jerked up, snapping instantly out of my light doze. Blinking, my eyes focused just in time to see Charlotte disappear out the doorframe. Rage overcame me as I lurched forward,
pounding my fists on the wood.
“Let go of her you bitch! Pick on someone your own fucking size!” Screams of pure anger rose from my chest until they melded and nothing made
any sense. The door flew open then, sending me flying forward. Screams echoed through the house; little screams, that were defenseless and full of searing pain. I covered my ears.
“Shhh, shhh.” Jay lifted me from the ground, despite my attempts to hurt him or fight him off. He smirked, carrying me to the room and placing
me gently on the bed.
“Please, you have to help her, she’s just a little girl!” Tears streamed down my face as choking sobs stifled my words. Jay surprisingly
wrapped me into a hug.
“I know. Shhh, it’ll be okay. Maria knows what she’s doing.” I couldn’t answer through my weeping and Charlotte’s blood curdling screams.
“Please don’t do this.” I begged, gazing at him with watery eyes. He softened slightly, placing a hand gently on my shoulder.
“I must.” He slipped the shoulder of my blouse down, and the sobs overtook me. “You’re the lucky one.” Jay cupped my face in his huge, rough
hands. “Rick is rough and he rapes the girls he feeds on.”
“Was that supposed to make me feel better?” I blubbered.
He chuckled slightly. “Yes.” His lips brushed my skin and I gasped, shaky, uneven breaths. His one hand pushed up my jaw while the other
rested on my collarbone.
“I’m sorry Scarlett.” He whispered into my neck.
“Are you seriously bipolar?” I choked out, unthinkingly. He pulled up his face.
“Excuse me, what?”
“How can you be so horrible and disgusting one second, and then relatively nice the next? I just don’t get it.”
He sighed. “I get awful when the thirst takes over. Unlike now, when I can control it. May I proceed now?”
“No?” It came out as more of a question, though I seriously doubted anything I could’ve said would have dissuaded him.
Instead of an answer, I received a sigh. He bent back down, pulling me toward him and brushing strands of stray hair off my neck. He once again framed the area with his hands, pressing his
soft lips to my skin and digging in the fangs. Horrific screams slipped through my lips as venom seared through me and with it, pain. At this point, the only thing I looked forward to in life was
unconsciousness. And so, as the fire raged through my being, I prayed for the blackness to come.
I really hated this. All that was left of my life was pain, fear, and frequent bouts of unconsciousness. Trust me, I loved being unconscious. Until I woke up. Still, I wish I had dreams to escape
to. Lately I hadn’t been having them. Perhaps my psyche knew that no nightmare could compare to the hell I was living in, but had forgotten what happiness and goodness were.
“Breakfast.” The voice startled me, partly because I was deep in thought, and partly because it wasn’t Maria. My heart lurched when Jay’s face poked through the door frame, and I hated the
reaction. I should’ve also hated him. I thought I did. But something inside me, a very small voice, was saying things I didn’t particularly wasn’t to hear, but was already well aware of. I was
falling for him.
Love sucks. And yes, pun intended.
“Hi.” I muttered as he placed the tray next to me and plopped himself onto the edge of the bed.
“Good morning.” He smiled, teeth gleaming in the shattered sunlight that always littered this room. I looked away, not wanting to see that horribly perfect face. “Would you like to have
breakfast in the kitchen?” He tried, hopeful.
“Sure.” It might be a welcome change to this already routine schedule I was on. I stood, nearly sending the tray to the floor. Jay caught it with such celerity that his arm became a blur to my
When we entered the kitchen my eyes flickered automatically to the other people in the room. Rick was slumped on the table, pouting as Maria spoke to him soothingly.
“What’s going on?” I whispered, turning my head slightly toward Jay. He sighed.
“Rick got a little…overzealous. That girl he was feeding off of didn’t...” He trailed off, glancing at me with an embarrassed look. No doubt he was praying he wouldn’t need to finish the sentence.
He didn’t. My eyes dropped to the floor. Tiffany was dead. How long before Charlotte and I were too?
“I’m going to find a new one.” Rick stood up abruptly, heading for the door. Maria stepped in front of him, wagging her finger and speaking sternly. He groaned. “No, ugh, fuck Maria! No way!” She
continued to scold him until he slumped at the table again. I had never seen this woman wield so much power over these men. I staggered back a step, startled by it.
“Jay!” She called, slipping back into the room and barking something at him. He protested in the same language, words flowing beautifully from his lips. He gestured to me and I shrunk back a
little, shifting from foot to foot and biting my lip. If only I knew what they were saying!
“Fine.” Jay sighed, cupping my face in his hands. “Go back to the room, lock the door, and put something in front of it.” He then leaned very close to Rick, practically hissing. “If you lay a
finger on her, I swear to whatever God there is you won’t live to see tomorrow.” With another fleeting glance at me, he followed Maria out the door. I turned quickly to leave, but Rick’s hand
caught me shoulder.
“Where do you think you’re going?” A slow sinister smile spread up his face and my stomach dropped. I prayed that Jay would keep to his promise.
“Back to th-the room?” My voice stuttered involuntarily, and he chuckled.
“Sit down. Eat your breakfast.”
“Oh!” I exclaimed as he shoved me into a chair and practically threw the tray of food onto the table.
He turned toward the window, muttering to himself. I was no longer even remotely hungry. My eyes darted around the room, looking for a way out. I knew I wasn’t strong enough to hurt him, or fast
enough to outrun him, but maybe I could try to slip out. Suddenly, my gaze landed on something that made my heart leap.
The newly sharpened kitchen knife laid just a reach away, shining against the marble countertop. I thought about the monster standing jut a
step away. I thought about what he was almost certainly going to do to me. I thought of the pain. I thought of the blackness that was my only escape. I thought of Tiffany.
The opportunity was there, just sitting there. And I took it.
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