Chapter 37: Heart
Unravel Him Playlist on Spotify.
Song; (Kings and Creatures- Dark Harvest) & (Kings and Creatures- Protector)
Releasing my hand on the railing, I dropped the crushed cigarette so my boot steps over it with a slow crunch.
Enough was enough.
Once this fucker’s out the ball game, then it’s game set.
On to the next empire.
“You’re all c-cowards.” Daniel heaves, angry waves rolling off of him.
“Standing behind her, because she’s got nothing to lose. Look at her! She fights for no one, but herself. Laugh, because you’re on top now. But when she leaves, you’ll be begging-”
“She will, stay.” Marvin growls. “She’s with us.”
“Are you sure about that?” A gleam is appearing in Daniel’s eyes.
“You’re all dispensable to her. Nothing more but collateral damage, nothing more but toys-”
A hush fell upon the room, only filled by the cheers going on downstairs.
It’s the first words I’ve spoken after hours since this session began.
As far as Daniel’s concern, he thinks he can turn them against me.
He can keep on believing that.
It’ll be so much fun, proving him wrong.
“You’re afraid... aren’t you?” Stepping forward, I knelt on one knee and tilted my head to the side.
Daniel’s mouth opens and closes like a gaping fish, unsure as he’s ever been.
“Are you afraid?” I repeated, my voice sterner.
He blinks rapidly, then swallows.
“Yes. Yes, I’m afraid.”
And so it begins.
Standing to my feet, I turn my back so I have Marvin’s attention.
“Kill him.” My instruction is simple.
It shouldn’t be questioned.
“What?” Marvin steps back so his hands are on either side of his hips. “What did you say?”
“Kill him,” I repeated.
He scoffs, mumbling incoherently to himself. “This early? When we’re so close to getting what we want?”
“We already have what we want.”
I shouldn’t be surprised by his ignorance.
There was too much adrenaline in the air.
Too much excitement.
The smirk on his face makes me see red.
“I’m not going to listen to you because you’ve gone a little soft after seeing a bit of blood-”
My nails lash across his face, scraping skin.
He stumbles and I’m pushing him against the wall, my fingers digging hard into his chin and my red hair fanning between us.
Already, the mark I imprinted on Marvin is starting to bleed, gushing like a steady stream.
I tightened my fingers and pushed upwards, not caring if his head hit the wall with a deafening thud.
Silence reverted throughout the room.
No one comes to his aid.
No one dares to move.
“You’re all dispensable to her. Nothing more but collateral damage, nothing more but toys-”
In that moment, Marvin realized that Daniel had spoken the truth.
They were dispensable to me.
I don’t care what happens to either of them.
His eyes glazed in panic, and his raised hands began to tremble.
I wonder, was it possible to kill him with my nails?
I could try... go for the trachea, aim quick, it would take a few agonizing minutes until he finally died.
It was easy.
So, so easy.
“Wait...” Marvin pleaded. “Please.”
I blinked several times to get rid of the ache in my chest that proved I was more then willing to extract my plan.
He didn’t have to know that.
“Don’t.” I hissed, sinking deeper. “Ever, question me.”
Shoving him aside, Marvin lands sideways, coughing hysterically.
With one hand, he hurriedly tried to swipe the bloodied cuts only succeeding in smearing it.
“You should know better, Marvin.” Jonas sighs, sounding astoundingly disappointed at the lack of intelligence between his men.
“You don’t have a death wish do you?”
At the testament, Marvin’s shook his head.
“No,” He mutters, defeated. “I get it.”
I walked over to the marble where the instruments laid, side stepping Daniel’s grounded body.
A lanky piece of flesh is left on the table, carved out of his forearm earlier.
The design is neat, cursive, not at all hidden.
Two sharp hooded swords joined into vines.
The symbol of a Danivel
Now that I’m out in the open, my face exposed and my form visible, Daniel realizes something most groups get wrong.
Red Devil wasn’t just a title.
It was real.
It was as real as her fucked up tendencies.
Which made it all the more scary.
He’s quiet as I take my time, choosing and picking, doing it so calmly one would think I was simply listing a grocery list.
Eventually my silence makes him break.
I’d figured he would do that.
Why else was I smiling cynically?
People never think properly when they’re scared.
“Why?” He swallows hard, the question riddling throughout his tongue. The question everybody’s been asking.
Why did I do it?
I ignored him.
Better to let him squirm.
False hope is the heaviest fall.
“You destroyed everything... years of foundations... gone, just like that.” He’s whispering when he says this, his face ghostly.
“Why did you do it?”
My expression must have been too hidden because he didn’t shut up .
“Didn’t they tell you?” My voice is whimsically soft. “I’m worst then they are.”
Picking up a spiral screwdriver, I tossed it to Marvin, daring him to look at me again.
He looks down at it, confused as to how it would match up to the other creative instruments along the marble.
“Get him back up,” I instructed the others, pointing over to a wide eyed Daniel.
Jonas’s men quickly did as I told but he wasn’t having any of it.
He started trashing, yelling, screaming profanities.
“No, no-bastards! I’ll kill you! I’ll kill all of you sick fucks!”
“Hold him down.”
Two of Jonas’s men held him down by the shoulders, forcing the male still, despite his struggling stature.
I remained unflinching and pressed my finger directly above the hollow of Daniel’s collarbone.
The injured male barred his teeth at the touch, a snarl lodged in his throat.
“Don’t fucking touch me, you whore!”
I raised an eyebrow at his choice words.
“So I’m a whore because I bested you?” Sighing sympathetically, I can’t help but feel sorry for the opposite gender.
“Well that just won’t do,”
Imprinting a cross sign with my nail on Daniel’s skin, I gestured Marvin closer.
“Go for the clavicle in between the acromion.”
Marvin straightens his footing and positions himself, not wanting to test my temper after what I’ve done to his face.
Better to risk listening then risk not listening at all.
“Oh, and Marvin?”
“Make sure it hurts.”
There’s a split second of silence before he stabs the driver in, the screw coming to a halt in between heavy bones.
Daniel’s face scrunches up, his body went still, yet his lips remained sealed.
He refuses to scream.
To show weakness.
I’ll show him that’s going to be impossible.
Marvin releases his hold on the driver and whips his head back at me for further instructions.
I lift both hands and made a fist before bringing one down over the other.
The order is clear.
Drive it in.
Make it quick, clean, efficient.
Make it painful.
Marvin raises his right hand into a fist before slamming the driver all the way through.
The fight downstairs masked his screams.
It’s a perfect symphony.
He trashes, voicing out his displeasure.
“You fucking stupid bitch!”
Jonas’s men continued to hold him down as Marvin’s confidence strengthens in each twist of the driver.
“AH, STOP, JUST STOP-”
“If you want to torture someone,” I hum beneath my breath.
“Do it properly.”
Marvin pulls out the driver and drops it before letting out a disgusted scoff.
“Fuck, he pissed himself.”
I catch sight of Daniel’s pants turn a darker shade before the trickling of liquid could be heard spilling across the floor.
“Imagine what else you can do,” The corner of my lips tilted up, as my words direct themselves at Marvin.
“This? This is nothing.”
I’m aware of the horror on Daniel’s face.
The grief and pain.
But most of all.
He sees a monster, nothing more, nothing less.
Even if he were to bow and ask for forgiveness now I would’ve spat in his face.
What good would that do?
As Jonas explained, Danivels was a group well known for sex trafficking.
They harmed, raped and murdered girls and boys alike.
Their connection with Aitenev was what started it all.
I’m going to rip the teeth of each and every empire Aitenev has sunken their claws into.
One by one.
“Anything...” Daniel gasp, painful tears etching down his face. “I’ll give... you anything.”
His words make me laugh.
It comes out loud, sultry, high pitched.
Oh this, stupid, stupid man.
Flicking my red hair, I placed my hand over the back of his chair and pushed it back, signaling the others to tip him backwards.
“What are you...”
He looks at the altercation, panic visible. His entire weight rests on those two leg chairs.
One wrong move and he goes tumbling down.
There’s a cut on his chin.
Delicately, I wiped the crust of blood and felt him flinch from the sting.
Still, I do nothing.
Not even as he begins to shake from the pressure, already weak by blood loss.
I don’t let that affect me as I traced my fingers down the corner of his mouth and tugged.
“You’ll give me anything?”
Moving closer, I pressed myself forward so he could feel my body heat and I could feel his.
“What if I want a heart?” Licking my lips, I curved my nail by his ear lobe and bit at the skin.
I tasted iron and blood.
“A-A heart?” Daniel stutters, both stunned by my close proximity and slightly disgusted.
I nodded, casually reaching for the buckles along my waist.
Saliva is thick in his throat as he swallows both suspicious and wary. “Whose?”
Finding the knife, I hit him in the chest, nailing the sweet spot that is his sternum.
Daniel froze, shocked by the sudden intrusion.
Already, blood is gushing out, over flowing all throughout his front.
He trashes, gasping for release.
I wrapped an arm around his neck and held him still against my chest as I twisted the knife, slowly finding the grid that connected his upper ribs.
The knife hit bone.
“STOP! STOP, PLEASE!“”
I let go, standing up so the knife remains stuck in that position with no way out.
“N-No- get, it out-” Daniel pleaded, completely in panic. “G-Get it out!”
Turning my back on him, I walked over to Marvin, who’s dark eyes glowed with a familiar sense of foreboding.
“All yours,” I nod.
Jonas is waiting for me, his hands against the balcony and his gaze warm and heavy.
I’m filled with adrenaline.
The excitement of the game had taken it’s course.
My feet starts moving despite understanding what’s going to happen to Daniel next.
I ignore the nagging at the back of my head and sunk deep into Jonas’s stare.
He’s everything wrong.
Green eyes lit dimly in the darkness followed by a stray piece of hair that had fallen of it’s jelled position.
“Here,” He holds out a glass, it smells like alcohol.
I take it, quickly downing it in one fell swoop.
The moment the liquid is finished, he spins me around, my back to his front and his hands against my waist.
He pulls my hair, exposing the right side of my throat.
And I’m breathing in his scent, his cologne.
It’s heady, a familiar mix of old and new.
Then we’re kissing, hot, heavy, hard.
In the background someone continues to scream.
I paid no attention.
I feel his teeth nip my lower lip before he traveled lower, further down my neck and collarbone.
Closing my eyes, I barred myself to him and let his hands wander, finding a ripple of warmth run down my spine and up.
I’m placed on top of the railing where the fear of falling three-story’s is lost on me as his hands clasp the bottom of my jeans, tightening his grip with each fervor.
Still, I’m kissing him.
I’m kissing him like my life depended on it.
I reach for his collarbone, dropping the glass so it shatters as both my hands pushed the tee’s neck wider so his chest is exposed and free for me to explore.
When his fingers dug beneath the shirt I wore and snapped against my bra strap, I moaned into his mouth.
He tasted like cigarettes.
He tasted like iron.
He tasted like liquor.
He tasted like mint.
Then I’m sucked into an irreversible reality.
A familiar reality.
Mint enveloped my senses.
I feel it, sense it, taste it.
Warm lips caressed the skin beneath my throat, journeying lower, sucking, biting.
Hands pulled my legs apart, fingers ran along the tips of my breast.
Familiar. So, so familiar.
I open my eyes.
Blue eyes glare back at me.
“Fuck!” Pushing the hands that held me, I jumped off the railing and tried desperately to catch my breath.
Oh my god.
What have I done?
Screwing my eyes shut, I held my breath and counted to ten.
What have I done? What have I done? What have I done?
Everything is coming back now, everything is hitting me full force with no means of stopping.
What have I done?
Opening my eyes, the world straightens itself, revealing Jonas’s pissed off expression.
“What the fuck was that?” He yells.
I refused to look at him, afraid of what I’d see if I did.
It wasn’t Jonas’s hands that I felt.
“No, no it’s nothing.” I settled for ignorance, hoping Jonas won’t pick up on the lie.
He doesn’t buy it, he’s smart enough to know I’m hiding something.
It doesn’t take him long. “What did you see?”
A storm crackled in between his iris.
“Nothing.” I breathe in. “Nothing just-”
“What,” He hisses venomously. “...did you, see?”
I flinched, one hand clawing my forehead in a desperate attempt to slow down how fast the world was going.
My chest began to hurt, my pulse begins to quicken.
I’m exposed, opened, every part of me, left out to be judged and controlled.
“I can’t.” My voice is dead soft. “Jonas, I can’t.”
“You saw him didn’t you?”
He’s furious. I hear it in his voice, I feel it in the air.
He’s right... By god, I wished he wasn’t.
“Did you feel his arms on you? Did you feel his lips on you’re skin?” He demanded.
“Were you kissing him when I was kissing you?!”
Jonas takes a hold of my arm and pulls me so I’m pressed onto his chest and staring into his crazed eyes.
“What am I to you? A toy? To use whenever you feel like it?” His grip is harsh, pressing, I feel my body shake violently against it.
“He’s not going to take you back, you’re never going to be able to go back to him.”
And then, something inside me splintered.
It was a minuscule crack.
A tiny tear.
But it hurt.
“You know that’s not why I’m here.” My defenses are out, I’m going to fight to the end.
“No,” Jonas smirks maliciously at me. “You came back because you killed Ethan.”
A shock wave crippled every nerve in my body.
I shake my head, utterly confused.
Within the depths of my eardrums, a numbing sensation has begun to over take my senses, twisting and coiling down my throat.
I shake my head slowly, finding the ringing fade in and out.
“You made him sick Vanessa, all those years taking care of you, all those years thrown away because he owed it to you’re Dad.”
I didn’t... I didn’t kill him.
My voice stalled in my throat.
His eyes are cold.
Yet they spoke nothing but the truth.
“His sons ruined you’re father, they made him suffer so much that he had to jump off a building, what else could Ethan do?”
Jonas reaches for my other hand before I can escape.
“Poor little Vanessa, abused by her Mom, left abandoned... well, he felt bad. He had to raise you. He had to watch you grow, little by little-”
I didn’t kill him!
Ripping my arms away, I struggled to catch my breath despite feeling my mind spin like a merry go round.
“If only he knew what a monster you’d become... maybe he wouldn’t have helped you at all.”
I pressed my fingers onto the front of my jacket and squeezed.
“King isn’t looking for you, Vanessa.” Jonas’s tone takes on a velvet turn.
His presence looms behind me followed by hands as he gently caress my hair going to glide down my cheeks.
“Even if he is, he’ll realized how terrible you’ve turned out. That you’re beyond saving. Then? Then he’ll leave, for good.”
“Fuck, you,” Hissing at how low he stooped, I balled my hands into fists.
“I don’t want him to look for me.”
“That’s a lie and you know it.” Jonas had opened Pandora’s box.
He’s revealing so many things I’ve tried in vain to lie to myself about.
“You want, him to find you. Deep down inside, you want him to save you. You want him... to help, you."
Fuck, that’s not true. That’s not true. That’s not true.
Jonas moves around so he’s in front of me and his hands are cupping my cheeks, pulling me impeccably close that our lips barely brushed.
“If he’s smart, he’ll stay far away. The people you love usually end up dead. Do you want that? Do you want to be the cause of his death?”
I shut my eyes, blocking the noise, blocking his words, blocking everything.
“You’re a murderer.” He echoes, sounding like a megaphone in my mind.
“You’ve killed, Vanessa. You’ve killed.”
Uncertainty and anguish filled my veins.
Everything he’s saying is a lie.
It had to be.
Yet why did my heart felt otherwise?
Why did my mind said otherwise?
Why were my hands shaking?
Why were the tears beginning to fall?
A string of harbored emotions had just been released.
These feelings belonged to the darkest corners of my mind, kept under lock with the key thrown into oblivion.
He had broken through that barrier.
He had found the key and unlocked the box, setting everything free.
And now that I’m vulnerable, now that I’m confused, now that I’m hurt and unwilling to move on...
What do I do now?
I reel in a shaky breath.
He won’t believe me.
Even if I tell him I’m in control.
Even if I tell him it doesn’t matter...
He won’t believe me.
So make him believe you.
A voice whispered in my ear, dark and all-knowing.
Yes... yes, I'll do that.
Taking a deep breath, I took Jonas’s hands away from my face and released them.
“I’ve killed.” I agreed. “And I’ll keep on killing until you believe, I am not, holding back.”
He smiles wickedly, hands falling to his side. “We’ll see about that.”
There was a choking, rasping sound.
I turned around to Daniel, just in time to see the blood that flowered his chest and the red that coated his front.
He was twitching, barely alive.
Marvin jerked out the knife, sending it clattering to the floor.
Daniel gurgled liquid, and bubbles erupted from the corner of his mouth.
At the back of my mind, Jonas’s words, continue to echo.
“We’ll see about that.”
He doesn’t believe me.
He wants me to prove it.
I have to prove it.
I have, to prove it.
Marching forward, I picked up the knife and stared down at it, finding my fingers shake.
I have to prove it.
Daniel’s rasping voice brings me out of my trance.
He tries to move his hand, only succeeding in making a motion with his fingers.
I have to prove it.
Raising the knife above me, I feel the darkness wash anew.
“P-Please...” He begs.
One action, one movement, one choice.
The knife went deep this time.
A fatal shot.
Daniel moved no longer.
A mercy killing.
That’s what they called it right?
But this isn’t mercy.
I don’t show mercy.
I held my breath and began to carve, scraping bones and ribs that blocked my way.
Blood spilled out from the gaping hole, still fresh as the owner lays limp on the chair, eyes glazed.
I’m focused on my task, slowly cutting and inching closer to my goal.
I have to prove it.
Ripping the knife out of the cavity, I sunk my right hand into his chest, feeling Daniel’s flesh squelch disgustingly.
Blood poured out of my hand and reached my arms.
The stench of iron is undeniably clear.
Then I feel it.
What I’m looking for.
Clawing the arteries, I ripped out the bloody lump and held it at shoulder level.
The balcony is eerily quiet.
No one dares to speak.
Breathing heavily, I stumbled backwards, overwhelmed with what I’ve just done.
The bloodied organ is slick with dark blood, practically pooling out of his hands.
“Is this what you want?” I glance at Jonas, scared.
He doesn’t respond.
Looking down at the organ, it slimes between my fingers and coated it dark red.
An unknown feeling began to bubble up inside me.
Grasping the heart, I held it up and let it dangle, the lump casting a dark shadow across the floor.
The liquid dripping off from it is entrancing.
It’s so slow, so steady.
I hear my own heart beating in my ears, no longer does it hurt, it’s calm almost, at ease with my decision.
This was someone’s heart.
This was someone’s life.
This someone, was no longer alive.
Two gunshots hit the roof of the Ring, startling the crowd downstairs into horrified screams.
I whip my head towards the balcony, caught off guard.
Jonas reaches for his side and looks down below. “Fuck,”
“Go,” He instructs his men with two fingers.
They moved quickly, each of them pulling out pistols hidden in their holsters.
One of them edge down the stairwell, careful and efficient.
“Marvin, get rid of the body.” Jonas gestured over at the chair.
The younger male nods and takes a hold of a plastic sheet before draping it over Daniel, forever sealing his soulless expression.
I barely feel Jonas grasp onto my arm as he pulls me onto the far corner of the balcony where steel and metal meets wood.
“Who is it?”
“NVPD,” He replies.
NorthVille Police Department.
NorthVille never once had a run in with the cops, they stayed out of our way for years.
The look on Jonas face tells me he had no idea what was going on either.
One of Jonas’s men re-appears from the stairwell, his face flushed and sweating.
“I’ve checked with our source, he says there’s no operation.”
“What?” Jonas snaps, enraged.
The man swallows nervously. “There’s no Sting.”
“Then who the fuck is out there?” He demanded, practically yelling at this point.
My name vibrates throughout the walls, echoing further into the distance.
I froze in my tracks, the entirety of my body turning pristine solid.
“I know you’re here!”
Jonas sucks in a shaky breath, the iris in his eyes darkening tremendously before releasing an chaotic curse.
“Son of a bitch-”
“Come out and face me!”
Raising my head in the direction of the voice, I find him standing on the platform, gun raised.