I was back with Nick. I'd missed him, in a way. Not the sex, not the faking, not the constant lies, but I'd missed—him. He was funny and intelligent, and his library and his books and smiles and scent of coffee and old wood and flowers. Nick was sweet and careful, always wanting to please, and he adored me. I was sweet to him, and innocent, and I always faked being easily frightened. I was his sweet, sweet Jamie, young and innocent. He was three years my senior, but he never treated me like a child—he simply treated me as something to be treasured, watched over, held and gentled.
Nick smiles, making me my coffee exactly the way I liked it—double-double with a single shot of orange extract and strawberries on the side. I was sitting curled in a pair of his old pajama bottoms, hair wet from a shower, blinking sleepily. "Oh, Nick!" I cried, hurling myself at the drink, while he laughed and held it carefully so it didn't spill.
"You've been a while without it, haven't you?" Nick asks, and I wonder at his meaning, but I play dumb and simply say that it had been a few days since my last cup of coffee.
Nick smiles again, shaking his head, and murmuring to himself, "Ah….So sweet. How could anyone deserve something so sweet?"
I merely sip at my coffee, closing my eyes and sighing. Nick curls up beside me with his black coffee, his eyes filled with wonder as I sip and smile, sweet and innocent.
I smile at him, biting my lower lip in the old way—something that had never failed to make Nick smile, and treat me tenderly and carefully, as if I was something that could be broken easily. He slings an arm around my shoulders carefully, pulling my against his side gently, setting down his still full cup and resting his other hand on my thigh. I drink the last of my coffee and he takes it from my hand and sets it down, before I nestle against him and shut my eyes, pretending to sleep. I hear him sigh, and feel his hand in my hair.
I just let him hold me, hiding my fear and my disgust.
And my shame.
This boy lies well.
I eye him, my eyebrows raised, wondering, What does he need from me? What would make him desperate enough to put himself through this? I only take him to my bed because he begs for it—otherwise I would refuse to make him go through it.
I trace a line down his bare shoulder with a single finger, and I smile when he sighs. I didn't care that everything he did was a lie—it was a good enough lie that I needed it every moment. I breathed, watching how it shifts his dark black hair. He shivers, and I pause, before lightly kissing him on top of the head and closing my eyes, drifting into sleep.
Coffee be damned, I was with the boy I loved, and that was all that mattered.
Who cares if he didn't love me back?
I'd actually rather missed him and Jamie's exploits. It amazed me how little torture, how little sweet torment, it had taken me to send Jamie running into the arms of a man who had lifted him from where he had been weeping at the corner, bruised and bloody from a brawl, and had taken him home and tended to his wounds, without even asking for his name until the next morning.
Nick was someone I couldn't torture, someone like Ann, who I merely disgusted instead of tortured. He would take more to end, more to murder, more to drive mad.
Nicky Boy was someone I could have fun with….
Jamie and Logan were easy—a whisper, a touch, a laugh, and they were trembling, tortured. Ann was strong and stubborn—she would take a lot from me before I could even harm her. And she had no heart as well—I couldn't even harm her by going after people she supposedly loved.
But Nicky Boy? He loved Jamie, his sweet, sweet Jamie—and Jamie didn't love him back. At least, not in the way Nick loved him. And Nicky Boy? Oh, he knew it. You could see it in his eyes and the set of his face—this was hurting him like nothing I could ever inflict.
But he was…special. I knew the ways to torture and torment him—tell him the words that were going through Jamie's mind. The pleading cries for him to stop, to end it, to go and leave him alone. And, oh, how Jamie hated him…. I would tremble and laugh at the tortured swirl of emotions in the room when those two were together in bed! I adored standing there, watching them pretend, watching them lie. And those two were exceptional liars—but not good enough for the truth to be there between them, seen but unseen, known but unknown.
So how else could I hurt Nicky Boy, other than telling him the truth?
I could make him remember.
He was there that night.
He had not yet known Jamie, not yet loved him, but yet they had been together. Oh, there are many things that night that Jamie did not remember….I laughed aloud, because I remembered them all.
Nick and I had been great friends once. We couldn't have been closer—he knew about every aspect of my life, including Jamie and Logan, but yet I had never allowed him to meet them. I knew he would fall for Jamie—and that Jamie would break his heart. But this? This torture that Jamie inflicted on him? I could never have expected this. But now that it had happened….
How perfect it was!
Jamie was destroying Nicky Boy—and there wasn't a thing I had to do about it!
But did Nick know it was my Jamie he took to his bed?
Yes. He knew. Nick was smart—he figured it out even before I came to him and whispered in his ear.
So I smiled to myself and let the boys, the lovers, torment each other more than I ever could.
And then I decide to go, and visit Logan. Remaining here wasn't worth my time—Nicky Boy was fun to hurt, but yet I needed to kill, and Logan was just crying out for his life to end.
Was it time to make him join me in Eternity?
But there were others that I could kill.
And maybe, just maybe, Logan would die if I drove him to it myself or not….
The death of your entire family tends to destroy you.
They were not dead.
That was the only thing I could ask for.
That, and new something to destroy.
I couldn't very well destroy Stacy's furniture and walls, now could I? No matter how much I wanted to turn those pink walls red, and end see how easily I could shatter her fragile and dainty furniture.
There was one thing that surprised me, though: The neighbors hadn't called the cops yet.
I'd been sprinting around the apartment, swearing and calling Her to me, daring Her to come and end my life, singing Where's My Angel by Metro Station again and again.
Jamie rose to my mind, and my teeth clench. Where was he? my mind screams. Is he alive? Is he okay? I swear and scream, my muscles clenching, my eyes dark.
I needed him! I had abandoned him, my best friend! If he died, it was my fault! I had abandoned him to Her! I had left him alone!
I dialed his cell.
He answers, and I hear him speaking to someone named Nick apologetically as he excuses himself, before he greets me. "Logan, hey."
"You're alive." I say simply.
"So are you." Jamie replies, both of us looking for ways to say the words we needed to say.
Bur we didn't.
We sat there, and talk about how we were surviving—Jamie explaining to me how he was spending his nights with Nick, and I told him about how I was staying with Stacy, sitting alone in silence and trying not to destroy her apartment while she was gone.
He laughed at that, and we didn't talk about what he was going through by staying with Nick. Some things you never share, but you just understand.
Which one of us had it worse?
I didn't care.
But then She came, and I said swiftly the two words he had been expecting to hear ever since he had seen my name appear when the call came, "She's here."
I hung up, cutting him off in the middle of wishing me luck.
I didn't want to hear it.
She brushed against me, whispering in my ear, telling me hello.
And for an instant I forgot Stacy, forgot Jamie, forgot Ann. Forgot and let go of everything but Her.
And an instant stretched into hours, and hours stretched into the night, and Stacy did not come home.
It wasn't until evening the next day that the knock came at the door, and the policeman stepped in and told me that Stacy was dead while She just stood there beside me, laughing at the expression of horror and grief and guilt, guilt most of all, that flickered across my face.
Stacy was dead.
I just stood there and laughed.
Stacy was dead….
Logan had kissed me, held me, wept in my arms as the girl who loved him more than anything else bled out in an alleyway, disemboweled and her throat slit, just as any whore deserved.
Oh, it had been so easy to manifest myself, to cause that rotten little bum to hate the skinny-hipped little hooker-dressed businesswoman. To want revenge on the spoiled little rich girl. A few choice words and sensations, and he was just itching to get that nice switchblade of his buried oh-so-deep in her honeysweet skin.
I knew the effect this would have on poor Logan—oh how mad he would be driven!
How slowly I would let him drown in his agony—I would make him live for oh-so-long, laughing every second as he loses his mind until finally he leaps from the balcony, committing suicide, and becoming finally mine. Finally mine! Mine for all eternity….
Whether he loved me or not.