"Raven, are you okay?" Kiara inquired, sitting down next to Raven.
The brunette didn't move.
"I feel like shit…" Raven mumbled in a low monotone voice.
Kiara pouted, as she looked at Raven, "Why did you get sick?"
"What the hell kind of dumbass question is that?" Raven snapped, as she moved her arms up to cover her face. The last thing she wanted was to deal with was Kiara.
Kiara thought for a second, trying to come up with an appropriate response. "Maybe you're pregnant," Kiara suggested, a little bit insensitively.
Raven didn't reply for several moments. "I'm not pregnant," Raven retorted defensively. She left the room to go lay down. Raven said nothing as she rolled over and tried to hold her tears in. She had lied to Kiara when she denied being pregnant. Earlier in the night, she had taken a test and that damn, "+" sign was haunting her. But she'd never let Damien or Kiara know that. Raven didn't trust either one nearly enough.
Rylee welcomed Sean and Nico into the room, having their plates ready. “Rylee, this is amazing! How did you get meat?” Sean exclaimed. They hadn’t had real meat in a long time. Nico sat at the dusty, old table and dug into her meal, not even noticing the silverware that Rylee had set out for everyone. Ethan and Rylee both sat down, and stared at the meat and then each other. Sean picked up on this quickly, and stopped shoving his face with food to give them a questioning look. Ethan nudged Rylee and she smiled at Sean before picking up her fork and took a bite.
Sean squinted at her, looking for any signs of suspicion. When he saw that both Ethan and Rylee hesitated with every bite, he looked down at his own food, and then back up to them. He dropped his fork, making a loud clang noise. Both teens looked up at him with fearful eyes.
“Nico go upstairs.” He said. The little girl looked disappointed, but listened to her father anyways. When she was out of sight, he glared at them saying, “Is this what I think this is?” He pointed to his plate with his fork. The two looked at each other with guilty faces. “We needed food, Sean.” Ethan told him.
“But this? I know we need food, Ethan, but what has this freak gotten you into?!” he yelled.
“Me!?” Rylee protested. “I didn’t even want to! I said it was a bad idea, and he talked me into it! Why do you automatically blame me?!”
“Because you’re fucking crazy! Look at what you do! Look at this house, the tapes, and now this?” He spit at her, “How could you be anything but crazy?”
Tears burned in Rylee’s eyes and she went around the table and pinned Sean down with her hand on his neck. “Well this life seemed pretty damn good for you, your daughter, and Ethan. So before talking about how crazy I am, why don’t you look in the fucking mirror. If you think that you’re better than me, or have more sanity left in you, think again. And if you think for one second that I won’t kill you, and then go upstairs and kill that little girl, you are mistaken. I may be younger than you, but I am above you, and you haven’t left. You stick around here with me, so don’t you dare talk to me about being crazy.” She gritted her teeth, and Sean choked under the pressure of her hand.
It wasn’t that she was stronger than him, it was that she was more pissed off. She had more anger, and he didn’t have the will to fight. She let him go, and went to put away the rest of the meat in the refrigerator. She’s not sure how the stove and refrigerator still worked, but she wasn’t going to complain. She was going to take advantage of it.
"Are you going to be loyal to me?" Damien asked.
Desperately hoping for Damien's affection again, Raven nodded.
"Okay, come here." The dark haired boy said, grabbing Raven by the hand, and pulling her frail body roughly down the stairs with him.
At the base of the stairs was something that was enough to send Raven over the edge.
Lying on the floor, bound tightly with neon duct tape was a sobbing, pregnant woman, who looked to be in her mid-twenties at the very oldest. Her body was shaking heavily, and she was trying with all of her might to scream through the thick layers of tape.
Raven's mouth gaped open, "Oh my God…" She whimpered.
With a smirk, Damien pulled a large hunting knife from his pocket and flipped it open. The red stains on the blade seemed to glisten in the light from the window.
"I'll let you do the honors," Damien proposed, handing the knife to Raven.
The brunette took the knife in her hands and stared at it in horror. "I-I can't…" She whispered, "I- no…"
"I know, that you're pregnant, Raven." Damien said dryly, "Why the hell did you think that you could hide that from me?"
Raven had nothing to say. The only thing she could focus on was trying not to show weakness. The last time she showed weakness, it ended horribly for her.
Before the girl can even react, Damien delivered a swift punch to her cheek.
"Alright, listen here cunt, and listen good, because I'm only going to say this shit once. You've gone from a loyal little assistant whore, into a conundrum. You're here because you're easy, not because I actually need to give a shit. So you have two options. A. Shut up, and do as you're told. No back talk. No problems. Or B, I will kill you, slice out your throat and never think about you again." Damien spoke intensely, getting quieter as he progressed, and accentuating every possible insult to Raven.
She couldn't hold it in anymore. With one rapid motion, she cut Damien's arm with the knife.
"SHIT-" Damien hollered as he threw Raven into the back wall, and held the knife to Raven's throat. She could feel Damien's blood trickle from the blade and down her neck. "You better watch it, bitch, until I figure out what I'm going to do with your little slut ass. I mean it too, unlike your previous thoughts of me and my endeavors. You just entered a big world of shit. Don't expect me to turn the other cheek on this one. You're so goddamn crazy. "
Raven looked terrified as she pleaded for her life, "Damien… I love you. You're the only person who has ever cared about me and you're the best thing in my life… I didn't mean it when I said I hated you… I love you.. I'll do anything you want. Anything…" Raven begged, hoping that he would accept her offer.
"That's better," Damien said coldly as he slid the knife into his back pocket, and grabbed Raven's shoulders, pushing her bruised body against the wall, and kissed her lips.
Trying to gather some comfort, Raven wrapped her arms around Damien, holding on tightly. That's when she felt it – Damien's knife. Without giving any thought to the consequences, and desperately wanting to get away, she carefully slid the knife from his back pocket, and shoved it into the back of Damien's neck, rendering him lifeless.
"Damien…" She mumbled, realizing the gravity of her actions. She took the life of the closest thing to love she had ever had. Her life was in ruins. "I'm so sorry…" Raven cried as she sat and took the dead boy in her arms, as if he were still alive. "I'm so sorry…" She began rocking back and forth. "Please forgive me… I'm so, so sorry… I love you… I love you…" It was the end of Damien, and the end of this life for her. She knew what she had to do. She needed a fresh start, one that didn’t involve a baby.
Rylee heard a knock on her door, but didn’t turn to look. “What do you want?” She said coldly. She was on her side, and refused to let whoever was there see her tears. “Are you okay?” It wasn’t the voice she expected. It was a little girl’s, so innocent, comforting. It was Nico. She came over and put a hand on Rylee’s shoulder, which just made the tears fall more. She tried to stay silent, but a loud sob escaped her lips. The little girl climbed onto the bed, putting her face in Rylee’s neck, and her tiny little hand on her shoulder. “It’s alright, Rylee, don’t cry. Please don’t cry.” Rylee wrapped her arms around the little girl, and hugged her close as the tears fell.
Sean didn’t know what to expect when he walked into Rylee’s room, but it definitely wasn’t what he saw. He saw two sleeping girls in the bed, Rylee’s arms wrapped around Nico, and dried black stains going down her face. Nico was curled into a ball and seemed to be attached to Rylee in a safe cocoon.
Ethan came up the stairs and saw him there. “Sean, what are you doing? I think you’ve made her enough ups—“ he was shushed by Sean, and he pointed to the sleeping girls. They both smiled at what they saw, and decided to leave them alone. They both headed downstairs.
“I didn’t mean what I said, you know.” Sean told Ethan, “It just came out. People aren’t supposed to live like this. We’re supposed to have families, and a life. We’re not supposed to be killing people, and video tape it. And now eating them? It’s just not how it’s supposed to be.”
“But it’s all we have. What else do you expect us to do? Live in the alley, and eat out of the dumpster? At least here we have shelter, and warmth. We have food, even if it’s not ideal, and we have Rylee. You saw her up there with Nico. She’s a little girl, who needs a mother figure. Even if you guys aren’t together, she can help Nico through any problems. Are you going to be able to talk about periods, or anything else? Not as well as Rylee could.”
“But do I want her kind of influence on my daughter?” Sean asked, “this isn’t the life I wanted for her, and I don’t want her to be in the same situation as we’re in now. She needs a life, Ethan.”
The boys continued to talk, while upstairs the girls were peacefully sleeping. Nico tossed and turned a little bit, waking Rylee enough to put her in a groggy state.
“Nico, honey, stop. Go to sleep.” She tried to sooth the little girl.
“I’m sorry, I’ll go back to sleep, mommy.” That made Rylee’s eyes shoot open. Did Nico just say…”mommy”? Rylee was too tired to really know what to think of it, but she felt warm inside. She didn’t exactly hate Nico calling her mom, even if it was just in her sleep. For once in her life, Rylee felt needed, and loved.