“So this is the girl you’ve been telling me about?” Owen asks. His umber skin tone seems even darker than usual since the tinting in my car blocks out most of the sunlight. I trail the girl, Julia, at a snail’s pace, watching her.
“Yep,” I say. “That’s the one.”
“Hmm,” he says, studying her. “I thought she’d be older.” He glances over at me. “So what’s the plan?”
I tap my fingers against the steering wheel, my blood curdling. I want to jump out of the car right now and rip her fucking throat open, rip her heart and her eyes out, take– Stop, I tell myself. If you don’t, you might just hop out of the car and do it right now.
“See that boy she’s with?” I ask. I didn’t recognize him at first, but once I got a better look at him I realized that that’s Kai’s younger brother. Which works out perfectly for me.
“Yeah?” Owen asks.
“I told you that I wanted to take her out with dignity, right? Like, I want her to give herself up. Mostly because it’s more satisfying that way, but I also don’t want us to have to fight her pack. We’re bigger and we’d win, but some of us might get killed if we do. So, her giving up and letting me kill her is what I want. And to do that, I’m going to kidnap him.” I point at Kai’s brother–Elijah, I think is his name.
“What?” Owen says. I can feel his eyes piercing into my skin though I don’t bother to look at him. “No, Jane. He has nothing to do with this.”
“Relax,” I say. I glance at him, his near-black eyes glaring into mine. His jaw is clenched stubbornly, which I’ve come to learn is one of his reactions to anger. He’s so calm otherwise that I have to pick up on the little things to know how he really feels. “I’m not really going to kidnap him. I know his older brother, the one who’s his guardian now. He owes me.”
Owen continues to stare at me as I stop us in the road, waiting for Julia and Elijah to continue walking. Upon hearing their conversation, I know that he’s the perfect person for me to use against her. She’ll do anything for him. Including letting herself get killed.
“And,” I say, “he can repay me by letting me take his brother. They can stay together, but no one else can know that I don’t really plan on hurting him. He'll be in comfort, just . . . away from everyone else. I’ll give it some time for her to get really distraught over it before I let her know that we have him. I’ll give her her options beforehand, then bring him out if she refuses. I’m not actually going to kill him, but I’ll tell her that I will if she refuses. He’ll be safe the entire time.”
I let my foot off the brakes and start inching forward again when they continue walking on the sidewalk.
“This is wrong, Jane,” Owen says.
“I don’t fucking care!” I yell at him slamming my hands against the steering wheel. He shows no reaction to my outburst, which makes me even angrier. “Do you know what she’s done to me? Do you know what she did to my mother? If it wasn’t for her, both of my parents would still be alive. Maybe even Tiffany, too, I don’t really know what happened with her. Either way, she’s destroyed my life.”
“I understand that, Jane,” he says. “But . . she’s so young. Do you really think she caused all this on purpose? We haven’t heard her side of the story–”
“Shut up!” I hiss.
“She could’ve been defending herself, we both know your dad had a temper–”
“SHUT. UP!” I let go of the steering wheel and grab his throat, but even then he doesn’t react. Just calmly stares at me with those pitying eyes of his, like he always does, until I calm down enough to let go.
“Fine, Jane,” he sighs. “I’ll back you up. But remember what you said. This is only about her. No one else gets hurt, and definitely not that boy. The rest of the pack will stand by you, too, no matter what, so make smart decisions about how you’re going to do this, okay?”
“Yes, yes, I know,” I say. Owen makes me want to hit somebody, but he usually has good advice when it comes to dealing with problems, so I keep him around. Usually. Right now he’s just being annoying.
I almost grab him again, but grip the steering wheel in place of his neck. Clenching my jaw, I turn to him, noticing how the nostrils of his wide nose are flaring, signaling that he’s annoyed at me as well.
“What?” I growl.
“Promise me that if she tries to talk to you, tries to explain what happened, you’ll listen. And that if she tries to make a deal with you, you’ll at least consider it, okay?”
I hit the brakes again, noticing Julia glancing over at us as I stop. Owen leans forward out of the corner of my eye, trying to make me look at him. “Promise me, Jane.”
I throw my hands in the air in defeat. “Fine, fine, I promise. I’ll hear her out.” I only say it to get him off my back, though I know that he’s going to hold me to it. Although it doesn’t really matter if I let him down anyway, because as soon as I get revenge for my family, I’m done. I’m tired of living. Owen can take over the pack; he’s always been a better leader than I am anyway. The only reason I’m still hanging on is because I can’t bear to let this girl get off scotch-free after what she did. It angers me too much to even consider it.
“Good,” Owen says, leaning back. He looks out the window again. “She’s been looking over here a lot, do you think we should go now?”
“Shh,” I say. “She’s staring at us. If she comes toward us we’ll leave, if she doesn’t, I want to follow her and see where she goes.”
We sit there, waiting to see what she does. Part of me wants her to come over here so I could have a reason to go after her and attack her, but I remind myself that it’ll be so much more satisfying to beat her at her own game; to have her give in. I won’t have to wait much longer before it’ll be time for me to start. First, I want to get in her head. I want to make her intimidated and scared, and with her being distraught over Elijah missing, it’ll be even better. Then, I’ll invite her pack for a meeting and I’ll tell her who I am, and what I want. The look on her face when she finds out will be priceless.
The one thing that I didn’t, and won’t, tell Owen about, is what I want to do to her other friend, Parker. I want to mess with her even more by biting him and making him a part of my pack. At first I was thinking about another one of her friends, but he seems like the best option. Her other friend–Sarah–there seems to be something wrong with her. I don’t feel like messing with someone who is already weak and struggling, whatever her problem is. When this is all over and I’m dead, Parker seems like someone who will be able to take care of himself. I think he could actually benefit my pack, and with Owen leading after I’m gone, I bet my pack could be practically invincible. Also, from what I've seen, I think that that Parker kid might enjoy having powers and being able to do the things we do. So, it looks like I’m going to be getting a new member.
Owen waves his hand in front of my face and snaps me out of my daydreaming. I blink as he waves me forward, mouthing, “Go, go, go,” to me, though no sound comes from his mouth. After glancing behind him, I see why. Julia is headed toward my car, and he doesn't want her to hear him. She might recognize his voice if they end up interacting later, and I don't want her to know who we are just yet.
I turn back toward the road and hit the gas before she can reach us, flying around a corner and out of sight. I’ve been following her around long enough to know everything I need to know anyway. Tomorrow I’m going to finally get started, and I can’t wait.
The only part of this that I do feel a bit bad about is Julia's mother. She's going to be left all alone and I hope she doesn’t do the same as mine after this is all over. It's not enough to make me change my mind, or even hesitate, but it does bother me in the end.