The Darwin Chronicles, Book Three: The Blackfire Meadows

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Chapter 13

Emmett chased after Amelia in the square. "Amy!" He caught her hand, almost fearful of what she'd do, but determined to prove himself.

She turned, again angrily. "What do you want, Emmett?" It was the first time she'd said his name clearly since before she'd been tortured, not in a haze of fever or pain.

"You never let me explain what happened-"

"I don't want to hear it."

"Amy-"

"No!"

Anger was starting to rise in Emmett too.

"Why do you do this to yourself? If you listened to me, you wouldn't be so angry all the time!"

"I have my reasons."

"Well, those reasons are pretty stupid if you ask me!" He snapped. "Wouldn't you rather have someone helping you cope with what you've been through than going through it alone?"

Now she was glaring at him right into his eyes. "I've always been alone! I don't need you to smother me!"

"Celeste and I aren't together, Amy! I was never trying to hurt you-"

"I know that."

"Then why-?"

"It's best you stay away from me, Emmett."

"Why?" Emmett heard blood rushing through his ears. "Are you going to cut me, like you did to Celeste? Going to blame me for getting cut and burned and raped or whatever?!"

Her grey eyes were hurricanes, lightning striking into his own eyes, the raging clouds boring into his mind.

I hate you, She said in his mind. This time she said it spitefully. This time she really meant it. This was the last straw.

"I HATE YOU TOO!" Emmett shouted at her, dropping her hand and shoving her backwards. "I hope you die alone with those disgusting scars of yours, I hope they'll always sting! I hope you really are pregnant with that guy's baby! What's his name?! Your torturer? Wen? I hope he finds you and comes back for more, Amelia!"

He said those things, and although they clearly hurt Amy, it felt good to say them. He stared into her crying eyes, daring her. Fight me, you god damn slut. Go on. Kill me. Then everyone will see the kind of monster you really are.

She threw the first punch. She was stronger that she looked, and he staggered backwards, falling, wiping the blood gushing out of his nose away. Rage consume Emmett, and he kicked out at her shins, throwing her to the ground. A crowd had gathered, at the front of it Mark, watching with a cruel glint in his eye. For the first time, fear sparked in Emmett. He'd now entered a fight to the death. He sat on top of Amy and threw a punch, which she somehow dodged. She rolled over, throwing him off and pinning him. He froze as she pressed a dagger to his neck. Both of them panted, but he knew that she'd won the fight. Terror consumed Emmett, and he looked her in the eyes, trying not to show it. Silently he pleaded with her to make it quick and painless, not like what she'd done to Celeste. Her eyes were now like stone- hard. Tears dripped off of her chin onto his face. They were sad tears, and angry tears. Emmett regretted everything he'd said to hurt her. He loved her, didn't he? Even if she no longer loved him back?

The minutes that passed felt like centuries as they stared at each other. Finally, she seemed to come to a solution. She lifted the dagger from his throat and stood up.

"You have to kill him, girly," Mark growled. "Or you die."

"No." Amy threw her dagger down at his feet. "I won't kill him. Stick your idiotic laws. I'm a Blackfire troop. I don't follow what the leader of Briarlight has to say if I don't have any respect for him." She turned her back on him, leaving the shocked, silent square behind.

She could have killed me, Emmett thought. She doesn't have a problem killing people she hates. Does she still have a soft spot for me?

He got up. A man his age named Luke was smirking at him. "Bad luck, Emmett," He whispered into his ear. Did Amy now have other suitors too, although she was clearly unaware?

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