P R O L O G U E
“Though lovers be lost, love shall not; And death shall have no dominion.” - Dylan Thomas
A I D E N
I pace the living room and let out a rush of relieved breath when I watch the green flashing light on my phone app start making its way back toward Oakland.
He has her. He fucking has her.
But not for long.
Stalking over to the mantle, I tug a framed picture down. The prick smiles back at me and my anger explodes. That motherfucker…
I stop that train of thought and remind myself I need to save my energy. Having a meltdown and destroying the house because of what he did won’t do any good. I need to preserve my anger. For Elijah. Because when I get my hands on that asshole, I’m going to fucking gut him.
Run along to your stupid cabin, old man. When you least expect it, I’m coming for you.
My phone chimes and I close the GPS app that shows the movement of his car to check my texts.
I swallow down my rage. Where was she months ago when I needed her most?
Mom: Could you at least come home to have dinner with us, Brandon? We miss you.
Fuck her. Growling, I type back my response.
Me: You know I won’t rest until I find her. I’ll take a rain check.
She fires back a nasty retort. Always the same with us.
Mom: Son, you’re going to have to accept that she ran away. If she’d been stolen, like you said, it would have been all over the news. A broken nose doesn’t mean she was taken. You know my stance on this.
The rage bubbles up inside of me again—I’m angry all the time these days. I don’t think I’ve smiled aside from when I look at pictures of her. Anastasia Winston. My girlfriend.
Me: Fuck you, Mom.
This time, I smile. After months of searching for her and following Elijah’s every move, I will finally have her back with me.
I press a kiss to her picture in the frame and set it back on the mantle. Then, I stalk over to my duffel bag. I throw some of her clothes, a few bottles of water and some snacks inside, and the 9mm pistol I’d stolen from Tony.
For over four months, I have worried about her. I have wondered if she was suffering. Cried myself to sleep over her.
Elijah stole that time from me—time I’ll never get back with her. He stole my girl right out from under my damn nose and with it, he broke a part of me I’m not sure can ever be fixed.
Now, it’s time to show him how much he underestimated me. That I’m not some kid who can be pushed around. He’ll live to regret he ever stepped foot in her bedroom that night. Regret he ever took my love from me.
It’s time to make him pay. And, it’s time to get my girl back, once and for all.