Chapter 7: Saeva
“What did he do to you?” John asks me the moment Enforcer Cyrus closes the cell door behind me. I don’t know how John does it. The supposed Alpha of the Kaine District beats the shit out of him and he still wants to know if I’m okay.
“He whipped me.” I don’t tell him it was only once, or that the Alpha ran his fingers up my spine for about five minutes before he actually delivered the punishment I had asked for.
“Did it hurt?” he asks after a moment. I nod slowly before remembering that he can’t see me.
“Yes,” I say, clearing my throat. John must have thought I was crying because I heard shuffling in his cell before he knocked on the bars and slid his hand through, reaching around for mine. “I’m sorry he hurt you,” I tell John. “I know neither of us never meant for this to happen. We were supposed to get in, get the job done and leave unscathed. I’ve done that same run countless times. I don’t know why this one was different,” I explain.
“Me, Anita. I fucked up in there. I thought I was cut out for that kind of life but when it got down to it I couldn’t. I could barely even rob the bank. If he asked me to kill someone I don’t even know how I would have reacted,” he laments. I don’t want John to beat himself over this, but he was right. It was partially his fault that we were in this whole mess. But it was also mine.
“I pushed you too far and too fast. I should have left you in the car to be my getaway driver instead of trying to have you take one of the leads,” I say softly. My fingers itch to touch his cheek in a gesture of comfort but I settle for grasping his hand tightly between the bars that seperate us.
“I signed up for it,” he tells me, continuing to try to pin all of the blame on himself.
“I got you tortured,” I supply. “I was the one who came to recruit you to this life. You never would have done any of it if it wasn’t for me,” I tell him. “I saw you were struggling so I reached out to the boss. When I sent word that there was a new possible recruit I was sent to keep watch over you to make sure you were trustworthy before they persuaded you.” My confession doesn’t come easy. There was no telling how many lives I’d ruined by providing useful intel to the boss before he attempts to lock in a new recruit.
“What?” John asks. “No one recruited me, I searched for jobs and that was one of the highest paid that came up first,” he says. I shake my head slowly, even though he can’t hear me.
“You were hacked, John. That’s why I followed you. Once you were deemed trustworthy enough, they sent a witch after you. She made you think that you wanted the job, then we hacked your internet server to put his work at the top of your list.” He doesn’t believe me. His breath remains steady and a small snort falls from his nose as he scoffs.
“Okay, Goldie. I think I would have noticed if a witch was following me to recruit me for some mystery boss who pays me in return for doing illegal favors for him.” I raise my eyebrow but let the words fall from his lips, hoping he’ll catch it himself. If he does, he ignores it.
“Aren’t Alpha’s supposed to protect their people? Why are we down here when we should be helping them find our employer instead? Why is he interested in us, anyways? We’re just pawns here,” he tells me.
“We’re human,” I say. “We’ve soiled their land by simply existing. That’s reason enough to lock us up for the rest of our days. Alpha’s don’t really care about all of their people.” I scoff before letting out a small giggle. It was uncharacteristic of me, laughing like a schoolgirl when I’d worked so hard to put up this front that I was nothing but a badass criminal in some sort of gang no one really knew the true workings of.
“That’s so stupid,” John agrees.
“Did you see how angry he got when I told him I was actually from the District?” I laugh as I recall the way his eyebrows seemed to triple in size before covering his eyes as they burned gold. John laughs along with me.
"Kinter,” he sneers, mocking the Alpha with a deep baritone that was almost a perfect match to the Satan Spawn that we had spoken to earlier in the interrogation room. I continue laughing, clutching my stomach as I fall to the floor in fits of giggles. “It’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. Next time he calls me a Kinter as an insult, I’m going to call him a mutt and see what he has to say about that,” John says with a throaty chuckle.
“He’s so smug,” I tell John. “I wish you would have been able to see his face when I told him I was really from his District. He didn’t know how to react,” I say, trying to continue our conversation long after the playful embers had died.
“How long until someone starts a riot and we all bust out of here?” John asks after a moment. I shrug. “I wonder what the worst thing anyone has ever done in here is,” he continues. I know what he’s doing. He’s playing the what if game to distract us from everything. And in this moment, I was grateful.
“Hell, I’ll even start a rebellion myself if it means getting free of him,” John jokes with me, nudging me through the bars and clicking his tongue at me as a way of reminding me of the joke. “I’d be a much better Alpha anyways.”
“I’d love to see you try,” Enforcer Cyrus says, tapping his foot on the floor. “The Alpha would tear you to shreds, human. It would not be wise to insult a candidate to be King of Slethia one day.” As if any of us needed a reminder that that monster could become king one day.
“Leave us alone! Let us live out the rest of our days in peace without having to hear your voice,” John says angrily. The torture had done something to him. It was asa if he aged nearly overnight. He had seen so much more pain in a few hours than he had seen in all of his years before he met me.
“The Alpha wanted to see her again. But now that you’ve made yourself out to be a threat against him and the crown, he’ll probably like to see you as well.” He doesn’t use my nickname. I can almost imagine him jerking his thumb in my direction. I wasn’t afraid of Alpha Kaine’s Enforcer. The man was well built and had a sinister sneer to him but other than that he was only the Alpha’s highest paid employee.
“What does he want with me? He made it very clear what he thought of me.” I say allowed, looking to where I can only guess John is. “What does he want with you?” Enforcer Cyrus scoffs and opens our cell doors.
“I said the Alpha would like to see you two,” he tells us. I stand shakily. We hadn’t even been here a day and I was already preparing for the worse. The Alpha was going to kill John for what he said, I was sure of it. He’d sent Enforcer Cyrus to spy on us and he’d caught John incriminating himself for something much worse than thievery.
“Relax, it was only a joke,” John says as a few different guards swarm around him to haul him to his feet and pull him away. “Let go of me!” I hear his feet hit the side of the door and the familiar skid of his body being dragged down the hall.
“Do I need to force you as well, or are you simply going to do what I’ve asked?” he asks me, my cell door opening a little further. I grab the bars on either side of me and use them to help propel myself forward towards his voice. “Good girl,” he says at my compliance.
“The Alpha has indeed chosen well,” he tells me, a gentle hand on the small of my back instead of his usually harsh grip on my arm. “Very well, indeed.” I don’t know what he means but I let him push me down the hall without a fight.
Being caught talking about a rebellion was treason of the highest offenses. If I fought an Enforcer on top of that it would only make me look more suspicious than I already looked. “What’s going to happen to my friend?” I ask the Enforcer as he leads me up the stairs outside the dungeon.
“For talking in a disgusting manner about the Alpha of the District he lives in? Possibly planning an uprising? Alpha Kaine will probably torture him for information before he eventually just ends his pathetic little life quickly. It’s unlikely that he is really a part of anything but I know the Alpha likes to play with his food a bit before he devours it.” He doesn’t say anything other than that, pointing in front of me to a small winding staircase I hadn’t seen before.
There’s a light at the top of the steps and a small metal door on the way. The metal vibrates and screaming could be heard inside. I wince when I realize that Alpha Kaine is probably doing his worse to whoever the poor soul behind that secured door.
There’s a small slot at eye level closer to the top of the door that my fingers itch to touch as we walk by. What exactly was the Alpha capable of? He was part beast but I had never in all my life seen him truly torture anyone on the various TV broadcasts worshipping him over the years.
The Alpha swings the door open, stepping out of the room and wiping a bit of splattered blood from underneath his bottom lip. “Your boyfriend will remain here until further notice.” Alpha Kaine says to me before taking my hand in his. “He is allowed one meal a day. No more. No less,” he says to Enforcer Cyrus behind me before leading me away.
His strides are long as fast, treading as much as he can as quickly as he can with no sympathy for my pace, which has become nearly a jog at this point to catch up with him.
“Where are you taking me?” I ask him. Alpha Kaine doesn’t answer as he pulls me up with him through the door before shutting it behind him quickly. He shakes his head at me slowly as if to tell me he would not be answering any of my questions.
“I am giving you a different room to stay in. You will not speak to anyone without my explicit orders that you may. You will not scream or beg to be released and you will answer the door only to me when I come knocking. Do you understand?” he says angrily. I look around his face awkwardly as he grabs my shoulders and grips them tightly in his hands.
I swallow the lump in the back of my throat and swallow before nodding. Alpha Kaine runs a hand through his hair before opening a door across the hall and shoving me inside, before locking the door behind him.
My eyes widen at the sound and I rush to pound on the door, chewing my bottom lip. That bastard has locked me in a fucking closet. Wouldn’t that just be my luck. I back up slightly, bringing my hands all around me to feel what my current cell was like. The walls were perfect, not a scratch in them, a stark contrast from the back wall of my current cell which had various large dents in it as if someone had tried to bash their own head in.
I am surprised to find a light switch on what felt like a carpeted wall. I close my eyes tightly as I flip the switch, waiting for something absolutely horrible to happen to me. But nothing does. No cage drops down on my head. There isn’t a secret hatch full of rats that opens to let the small rodents eat me alive.
Someone laughs downstairs, a throaty chuckle that is far too happy to belong to someone being held against their will or made clinically insane by the inhumane conditions they were left in by their leader.
That’s when I open my eyes and turn around.
It’s a bedroom. But not just any bedroom. It’s a nicely made up bedroom fit for a princess.
The bed is four posters and decorated in a golden duvet. I drop to my knees and let my fingers trail up the soft rug on top of the gorgeous white tile that decorates the floor. Alpha Kaine has locked John up like a dog whilst he lets me roam around upstairs with the high ranking members of his pack.
Or like his mistress.