Gods And Monsters

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Chapter Four

I drive to the address Ophelia wrote down on the sticky note. For a long time, I am surrounded by tall trees, far away from the rest of the town. At first, I'm wondering if this is some kind of prank and if Ophelia is really as trustworthy as I thought, but then the trees start to clear and make way for an enormous mansion.

I mean this house could put Neverland Ranch and the Playboy Mansion to shame. It's freaking enormous. Now I understand why they put this house so far out in the woods. There's no way they could fit this place in town.

Gaping, I get out of the car and walk toward the mansion with tentative steps. Whoever this Elijah King guy is, he's obviously freaking loaded.

Before I get to the door a deep, gruff voice says, "I know you."

I swivel my head in the direction of the voice and--for the second time today--wish I hadn't. The guy I saw making out with the redhead by the coffee shop--the one who just stared at me the entire time he was getting touchy-feely with somebody else--is leaning against the house. His grey eyes are drinking me in and a cigarette is hanging carelessly from his lips. Up close, I can see he's much more attractive than I thought. He's got a strong jawline and chocolate colored hair, broad shoulders and even the shirt he's wearing can't hide the six-pack he's sporting.

Still, I curl my face up in disgust, unable to un-see his hand gripping the redhead's butt while he was just staring at me like some creep.

"What are you doing here?" I snarl.

"I live here," he says, calmly. "What are you doing here?"

"I'm looking for someone," I respond, shortly.

"Someone like who?"

"Is that really any of your business?"

He gives me this look that says he clearly doesn't like my tone. The look is almost enough to make me shrink back, but I'm a brave little asshole so I return his look with one of my own.

"If you tell me who you're looking for maybe I can help." His tone is a bit rougher than it was at first, his grey eyes nearly black.

I sigh. I do want to be away from this place as soon as possible.

"Fine," I huff, glaring at him. "I'm looking for Elijah King."

He raises a brow. "Elijah King, huh?"

"Yeah. Do you know where I can find him?"

He takes one more drag from his cigarette before tossing it on the ground and stepping on it, his eyes on me the entire time.

"You've already found him," he says, grinning.

For a minute I don't comprehend him. For literally one whole minute, I just stare at him, my brain unwilling to process what he's just said to me. I'm pretty sure I look like a freaking robot as I stand there just gaping at him.

"You?" I squeak, snapping out of my surprised daze. "You're Elijah King?"

He does a mock bow, smirking the entire time. "In the flesh, baby."

I don't want to believe it. I want to believe he's playing some cruel joke on me but--despite the smirk--he doesn't seem to be lying.

"Great," I groan, turning my gaze Heavenward. "This day just gets better and better. This manwhore is supposed to sell me a house. Why have you forsaken me, Lord?"

"Manwhore?"

I snap my gaze back to Elijah and frown.

"Yes, manwhore. Did you forget the way we met? You were making out with the redhead, your hand was on her ass and you just stared at me for like, five minutes? Ringing any bells?"

Elijah flinches a little, obviously, he now remembers. "That wasn't the best first impression, I'll admit."

"Look," I say, sighing. "Ophelia told me your family owns Lacome Cove and that if I wanted to find a place I should talk to you. Do you have any places for me?"

"What kind of places do you like?" he asks, going into business mode almost immediately.

"Honestly, it doesn't matter as long as I can get out of that motel room, I'll be fine."

***

A few questions later, Elijah is driving me to one of the houses he thinks I'll like. We arrive to a humble little house located not too far from the sea. Up ahead I can see a familiar looking cliff, the closer I look the more I realize I remember where I've seen it. In one of the old archives, they called it 'The Cursed Cliff' because many people had jumped from it and taken their own lives. One of those people being Marie Coleman.

Elijah, who clearly sees where I'm staring, hesitates.

"If you don't want this place it's fine," he says, gazing at the cliff as well. "A lot of people don't want it."

"Because of The Cursed Cliff?"

He nods once, his grey eyes meeting mine. "A lot of people think it's haunted."

I know the typical black person response to something like this would be, "Oh, Hell no. I'm getting my ass out of here." However, my supernatural writer senses were tingling. This was my chance to write something good. This was my chance to gain back the inspiration Damien had taken from me.

Just thinking his name sobered me up. For me, it didn't matter what house Elijah decided to show me. Whether it was a house across from a supposed Cursed Cliff or a house where my neighbor was the Gingerbread Man. All I knew was, I needed to be somewhere I didn't stand out too much.

"I'll take it," I speak up quietly, eyes straight ahead. I'm looking at the cliff, but I'm not really seeing it anymore. All I see now is a reminder that I committed suicide the day I tried to escape my abusive boyfriend by turning him in to an obviously corrupted justice system.

Elijah's head snaps in my direction, I don't have to look at him to know he's surprised.

"You haven't even seen it yet."

"I told you before, as long as I'm out of that motel, I'll be fine."

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