The Gentiles

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Callie

The handle of the car is slick with my sweat as I grip it tight, heart pounding in sync with the speed we’re going at the moment. I chance another side glance at Abe, who’s expression didn’t change since we left the restaurant. I must admit, when he said he knows a place, I did not expect him to actually know a place. At least, not the one he brought me to. Shelly’s is a dinky restaurant, cozy and isolated on the outskirts of the city, situated beside a gasoline station aptly named Shells. The similarity in their names only reinforces the thought that they are owned by a single person.

As we enter the city, I noticed that more and more vehicles come onto view around us, their headlights like fireflies illuminating the dark, but even then, with their presence, the tension didn’t leave Abe’s body. I want to ask him what happened back there, what caused the sudden change in him. This is different from the intensity I felt in his apartment. No, this is threading towards something dangerous, something I’m not sure I should be a part of. The hairs on the back of my neck are standing up, my back rigid in dreadful anticipation. This is something deadly and I am right to be utterly scared.

“Almost there,” Abe mumbles. I almost jumped in surprise. It’s the first time he’d spoken since he yanked me from my seat back at Shelly’s, the only sound in the car breaking through our cutting silence. He took one hand off the steering wheel, resting it on the center console palm up.

My fingers stopped shaking once they curled between his, the welcoming warmth calming the whirlwind inside my stomach. His blue eyes clashed with mine for a few seconds, before he concentrated in front of him once again. He squeezed my hand and I squeezed him back.

We both visibly relaxed, finding temporary solace in each other’s touch. No matter his reason was for bolting out of there, he’d tell me if he wanted to. Me, I’m less worried knowing he’s with me.

Abe rounded the corner of the street and I saw the red and blue lights before the cars even come to view. I got a glimpse of one before the sight was dragged away from me.

“Shit,” Abe growled, stepping on the gas swiftly the force made us thrust forward. He backed out of the road fast and smoothly, the tires squeaking on the gravel.

“What are you doing?” I almost scream at him, tugging my hand from his hold. “That’s my house!” I shrieked, panic bubbling up higher and higher as the seconds tick by. What happened there? Why are there cops in our driveway?

Abe unlocked the doors but he didn’t turn the ignition off. I looked at him questioningly, eyes searching his as he avoid my gaze..

“You gotta get out of the car, baby,” he said softly. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say he sounded sad. But Abe is hard all over I know I have mistaken it.

My voice was hard when I tell him, “You’re not coming with me.”

It’s not a question. I know even before he hid the car from view that he can’t come in with me. I don’t know what Abe is up to, not as much as a glimmer of hint or a wild speculation and if he can’t be around cops, I wouldn’t make it difficult for him.

Without so much as a fight, I nodded, shoulders sagging. I’m still on the edge, itching to know what happened back in the restaurant, to know more about him, but I held back. I guess it’s too much to take for a day and now, this. There is no use prolonging the agony. I have to get in there and know what’s wrong.

I know my phone’s battery had died early this afternoon but because of my stupid dramatics, I’d completely forgotten all about it. No, I’m lying. The truth is, I chose to ignore it.

I don’t want Fely calling me to ask me to come to that stupid party. I don’t want to see any notifications from social media about the game or any gossip or topic related to it. I don’t want to hear anything from one particular person, or more likely, I don’t want to know the lack thereof of any calls from him. He probably didn’t even notice that I was gone. It’ll hurt me more knowing he didn’t care enough to worry about me so I chose instead to not know anything at all.

How that decision came around to bite me in the butt.

My frantic mind could only think of the worst. Setting all the hurt aside, I pray that it was nothing serious, that nothing happened that might take him away from me. Is it even about him or is it my parents? My stomach lurched and my hand couldn’t shook as I reach for the handle.

I don’t waste any more time. As much as I don’t want to leave things hanging with Abe, the gravity of what might have happened back home had the choice made for me.

Yanking the door open, I now worry about Harry.

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