~SOUNDTRACK: Twenty One Pilots – Heathens~
Sit tight and listen closely. Hold your breath. Don’t let them hear you. You think the end will be bad? Think twice. What’s sent to prepare the world for its end is well prepared to make you want to beg for it to stop. Fear not the end, kid. Fear them, for they whisper sweet nothings in your ear and break you from inside and before you know it, you’re a slave to their will and there’s no escaping but the one that the end provides. That is how this’ll work. Be warned.
This is an ancient story, old as time. Old as me. And I am very old. I’ve been around for as long as this Earth knew the first glimpse of the sun. It’s about how the world was born, bathing in light. And about how it’ll end, drowning in darkness. Your Bible knows this story. It speaks of a last day when the worst of sinners stand to be punished. It speaks of skies splitting up and grounds swallowing this world whole. It speaks of four horsemen riding around and delivering the well-deserved doom.
Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? But there are things your books do not know about the end. The world doesn’t end on one day only. When the world is deemed rotten enough, sick enough, broken enough, preparations begin. Like the end is just an unfortunate spectacle at which you, mortals, all happen to have front seats. It takes rehearsal.
So the ancient story goes like this.
When the world is deemed rotten enough, sick enough, broken enough, seven judges are named to be set free above ground. You all know them. You feel their whispers in your ear each day. You know their names. They take shelter in the depth of your chest with every time you frown, purse your lips, curse, groan, cry, clench your fists or unleash your tongue. And when the time comes, they’ll step among you and they’ll spit their venoms in your mouths, making sure you become just as rotten, as broken, as sick as your world, enough to deserve what’s coming for you.
So the ancient story goes like this.
Seven sins. Seven virtues. A war between the cliché forces of good and bad.
So the ancient story goes like this.
A boy born out of virtue able to make the world kneel and bring it to redemption.
Where the ancient story was wrong.
There are seven deadly sins. But there is one graver than them all. Me. I was there when Cain murdered Abel. When Caesar was betrayed and stabbed. When Nero burned Rome to the ground. When they put bullets through John F. Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln. I am still there. I am here. I am on the edge of each knife. On the barrel of each gun. On every set of knuckles that connect with another jaw. In every drop of blood that’s spilled. They say that life is the greatest gift that God granted mankind. And that taking away this gift is the greatest sin. I am Murder. I am the greatest sin of all.
So the ancient story goes like this.
There’s this boy who’ll save the world. Way too cliché for my taste.
So my story goes like this.
I’ll find this boy. He can’t very much save the world if he no longer possesses the virtues to help him do so. When I find him, I will kill him. It’s what I’m best at. And if I can’t kill him, then I’ll corrupt him. I’ll allow nothing to stand in the way of the mayhem I have prepared for the worthless humans.
So the actual story goes like this.
You could say it’s a story about a confused boy who finds himself in the middle of a biblical war. Partly. But that would be boring. No. This is a story about seven devils, murder and the confused boy they have their claws in.2: Chapter 1: Seven devils
CHAPTER 1 – SEVEN DEVILS
There once was a man with danger in his eyes,
Born to deception and broken by lies;
He searched the whole world for a purpose to meet,
He never looked back and he trusted his feet.
The road was uncertain, strange faces to greet;
He found Lust on the side of a street.
She swayed her hips, whispered in his ear,
He told her she’s shallow and watched her disappear.
He went on his way without hoping for much;
Deep in his gut he felt Gluttony’s touch.
He asked him to rest, let his belly be filled,
But the man saw the devil for he was ill-willed.
Days and nights passed, he then met Greed,
The one who cared for nothing but his own evil deeds.
He told him the world was his for the taking,
But the man had no use for avarice and moneymaking.
His heart on his sleeve, he kept going and going.
His path crossed with Sloth without even knowing;
A mindless slacker who asked him to quit,
To let go of worry and lie down a bit.
But the man carried on with his chosen path;
The anger and restlessness led him to Wrath.
He was tempted to give in to his calling to rage,
But he was the better man and turned the next page.
And so he met Envy, the one green with spite,
Who made him resent everyone in sight.
But by then he knew these games all too well,
So he bid the green-eyed monster farewell.
The last one was Pride, zealous and vain,
An empty shell who thought the world was his to reign.
The man rolled his eyes and chose to stay humble
And as he took that last step, the world began to crumble.
For a man is such made to know virtue and sin,
And one pure man only cannot save his kin;
For when the world meets its doom and the devils ascend,
Only the righteous and the wicked can stand until the end.
~SOUNDTRACK: Lana Del Rey – Serial Killer (K Theory Remix from Suicide Squad)~
I was the first of my own to awaken. We’ve been asleep for millennia. We’ve tasted the despair and the decay of humans, we’ve felt the bliss as they slipped into sin and the guilt as they uselessly repented for it. Once you taste the sin, it lingers on the tip of your tongue until you’re left craving for it as you crave the air. Humanity is beautifully weak.
We’ve been asleep for millennia. Through eternal dormancy, we’ve enjoyed the way humanity slipped step by step, farther and farther away from righteousness, until they could no longer find the way back. And when there’s no way back, all that’s left is the ledge. You can only step forward, into free fall.
We’re those steps heading to the ledge. Seven of them. Seven steps until the leap. I am the first one. I am Lust.
I open my eyes. I take my first breath in thousands of years. The world smells rotten. I love it. Our waiting will pay off. I can already taste all the sin I will feast on.
The earth cracks open and I take my first step. It’s exhilarating. The world is not as I remember it. It’s dirtier than ever. And I’ve walked among these pitiful humans many times before, each more despicable than the one before. And they’re rising to my expectations. The air is a mixture of mischief, each scent familiar to me as it is derived out of the seven types of venom we’ve spat since the beginning of time. But as I identify my favorite one, I lick my lips.
Oh, I’m gonna have so much fun.
These are perfect times for lusting. The 21th century is a cocktail of hormones and urges, it’s like a stage on which everyone gets naked. Sinning used to take more effort, but I’m not complaining. It’s easier to read what they want, what they desire now. So I’m off to hunt.
I’ve taken many forms before, according to what each man – or woman – wishes me to be or desires to be with. Now I’ve settled for this one. Golden hair. Long legs and a red dress with a rich cleavage. I remember when people lost it at bare ankles. It’s almost too easy.
The click of the high heels through the bar announces my arrival. I know how it goes. All eyes are on me. I hear the blood hum in their bodies as their gazes follow me to my seat. I make it a point to swing my hips and even throw a wink here and there and even stopping to move a strand of hair beneath a girl’s ear, a sweet young thing with doe eyes who gulps as my fingers graze her cheek. I’ve always had a soft spot for girls. Sin bred by innocence is my drug and I enjoy that rush like nothing else.
Then I sit down at the bar, order a drink, and I hear the rumbling behind me as the eagles race to my side like I’m their prey.
And it’s on. For little do they know, it is me who’s the huntress here. And these weaklings are my pretty to be devoured.
~SOUNDTRACK: Brown Bird – Down to the river~
I awoke famished. I’d gone for millennia without a single bite of all those human delicacies. The human race may be wicked, but they surely have a taste for the finer culinary things. I played a vital role in that. I’d been there to constantly ensure that these mongrels fell prey to the hunger in their bones violently.
It had never been hard, for I was, after all, Gluttony. I played their cravings, their ravenousness like a good poker hand. And then they thanked me for it. I made peoples starve for others to stuff their bellies and I was praised like a god rather than a sin. All the better. A thing you don’t know can destroy you becomes so much more lethal.
I recognized the place where I first awoke. Of course. I knew Italy all too well and Italy knew me. Italy worshipped me. The entire Italian cuisine was an homage to me. Restaurants and terraces flooded with humans from all around the world, flying from all of its corners to get a taste. And I was hungry for their hunger.
I strolled down the streets of Naples, enjoying the smells, enjoying the countless flavors, enjoying the way that, with every step I took, I could practically feel their insatiableness as a tangible entity.
One step. Moans against mouthfuls of food.
Another step. Washing it down with bottles of expensive fine wines.
Another step. Chewing as though their lives depended on it.
Oh, but it did. Humans were such frail, funny creatures. Flaunt a speck of temptation before their eyes and they fall for it like moths flying into the light.
By the time I got to the end of the street, I’d left mayhem behind me as the humans learned that the only thing that could destroy them was themselves and their own taste for sin.
~SOUNDTRACK: AC/DC – Money made~
Now this was indeed a surprise.
Back when I’d walked this Earth last, these lands they now called America had been inhabited by savages, by what people apparently now called Natives. And here I was, in the 21th century, in a city so wealthy, so opulent, so bright, so vibrant and melodic with the sound of money clinking, that it made my blood sing.
Greed. After all the empires I’d seen and brought down, I hadn’t expected to find it here, of all places. Though I assume Las Vegas was a small empire of its own. I would’ve said it was as good a place to start as any, except it was the perfect place for me.
I smiled to myself. Nothing like sinning and dumb humans falling prey to their basic instincts to get your heart pumping after being asleep for millennia. And people were silly like that. The more they resisted temptation in their day to day life, the harder they fell. The easier it was to take those instincts and twist them until it was all they could see before their eyes.
I walked into the nearest casino with an expensive suit, my pockets filled with cash and a big grin plastered on my face. Music played loud, women passed me by wearing obnoxious slutty dresses and men followed them, hoping they could buy some of their time and some of their flesh. Dices rolled. Laughter. I closed my eyes and breathed in the mold in these people. It was almost too easy.
I moved behind a pretty little thing in a red dress, with blonde hair, pure and untainted. Oh, Lust would’ve just loved her. But seeing as she was in my corner this time around, I’d be the one who got to have fun with her.
I cleared my throat and she flinched a little, gazing at me over her shoulder.
“Hi,” I smiled sweetly at her until I turned the frown between her eyebrows into a small grin that mirrored my own.
“H-Hi,” she replied softly. Oh, the corruption of a soul infused with temptation is easy and fun. But corrupting sweet, innocent souls? I’d forgotten how addictive that was.
“You know, these are very rich men,” I started my game, not breaking eye contact for a second. She gulped and stole a glance to the table where the dices rolled and rolled in a dizzy dance.
“I, I know. I didn’t mean to… I was just curious. My boyfriend, umm, he brought me here for my 18th birthday and I—“
I raised my hand and put a finger over her lips, watching as her eyes darted to it and then found mine, looking beyond hypnotic.
“Shhh,” I whispered close to her. “Never mind him. You are surrounded by men with power. Men with money. Men with wealth beyond your comprehension.” She gulped again, staying silent this time, perhaps starting to sense my implications. “You’re in Vegas, baby. You know the amount of money that many of them would pay to have a virgin warm their bed tonight? You’d walk out of here a rich woman.”
She started trembling, gripping the edge of the table for support. But I had her. I smiled as I felt her mind open up to me and I feasted hungrily on the weaknesses I found there.
“You want it, don’t you, Samantha? You’d return home with more money than mom and dad could ever hope to earn. You’ll shut them up. You’ll go to college without owing them a penny.”
She looked around her, pondering, and I decided to see just how far I could push her. After all, she was my first prey in millennia and I was curious to see just how out of practice I was.
“Why stop there? The night’s young. I’m sure you’ll find someone who’s willing to pay a huge deal for your purity, but you’re young, beautiful. I bet there’s plenty men – and women – here who’d make you a very, very rich woman just to have you in their bed for a couple of hours.”
I closed my eyes and let out a dramatic gasp, then opened them up to find her watch every movement and cling to each word that poured out of my mouth.
“The choice is yours, Samantha. You can go home with your boyfriend, maybe lose your virginity in the backseat of his car and have him dump you in a month or two…” I paused for effect. I always was a fan of the dramatics. “Or choose the other option and solve every. Single. One. Of your problems.”
I’d leaned in at some point in the conversation and I saw her lick her lips. I chuckled lightly and moved away, watching her shake her head a little in an attempt to shake off the spell. Pointless. The seed was planted. I could read the choice in her eyes. Out of practice or not, I had to admit I still had it in me. Like riding a bike.
“And, umm,” she cleared her throat. “W-Would you be? Willing, I mean?”
My eyebrows shot up in surprise. Count on these puny humans to shock you. “I’m afraid this is out of my jurisdiction,” I mocked, letting out a laugh at my own joke. I thought again of Lust and how much she would’ve appreciated the offer. “But off you go. I’m sure you’ll make a guy, or two or three, very happy. As they will you.”
I winked at her and watched her as she swayed her hips towards one of the men at one table, leaving the casino at his arm within minutes. Of course. There were a few universal languages that humans spoke. Seven, to be precise. And money was one of them.
With the young doe corrupted and out of the picture, I squared my shoulders and cracked my neck. The night was young and with money flowing in waterfalls, I was keen on catching up on all the thousands of years of greed I’d missed out on.
~SOUNDTRACK: The Heavy – Same ol’~
This was so troublesome. I was sleeping so damn well. Was there any particular point for which we’d been woken up? I mean, it had been merely millennia since the last time we’d been around Earth. Was it honestly so necessary for us to be up again?
I knew the drill I knew all too well. Humanity was wrecked again. We were to ensure its perdition for good. What a drag. Humanity had always been broken and everyone knew they were beyond salvation. But every now and then, someone decided we were to work some of our magic and give them that last push towards perdition. So completely useless. They were lost anyway.
I woke up on a beach. It looked like The Bahamas, but I couldn’t be sure. These earthly lands looked the same to me. The heat was unbearable and the waves were too loud for my liking. I would’ve preferred something quieter, more remote, but I was, after all, on the job. And as I looked around me at all the lazy humans splattered on the sand with their bellies in the sun, I figured I was just in the right place.
I lied down in a chair on the beach, with a giant hat on, sunglasses and a big cold margarita. Luckily for me, it didn’t take me much to corrupt. It was like one of these waves crashing at my feet. Or maybe like a heat wave spreading over.
I kept sipping on my margarita carelessly.
What a drag. And this crazy heat. I couldn’t wait for this to be over so I could go back to sleep. I bet the other six were so excited, so eager to spit their venom tirelessly. I’d just gotten here and I was already so tired.
The wave of Sloth spread quickly and surely. No one felt like moving from their spot on the sand, they allowed themselves to rest there lazily for what felt like quite a long time. I couldn’t tell for sure. In eternity, days felt as no more than mortal minutes. But when I finally got up from my chair, I walked among corpses in decay who’d been too lazy to stand up and get out of the burning sun.
So I guess I was doing my job right.
~SOUNDTRACK: Halsey – Control~
Just my spot.
I woke up in Iraq, loaded with Wrath. After all, it was the emotion of this century. People were angry all the time. At other peoples. At their own countries and leaders. At their friends. At their neighbors. At themselves. I thrived in it.
Baghdad crashed and burned at my feet and I closed my eyes, taking a deep breath. The streets reeked of blood and smoke rose to the skies. Screams rose with them. Some bred from the heat of the violence. Some in agony.
I walked those streets paved with violence, stepping like a lioness sniffing for prey. I didn’t have to do much. They were already so good at destroying each other. I think I was merely to supervise their destruction and make sure it all went according to plan. But then again, humanity had always been good at hate and anger. It was their way to blow off steam. And it was also what I’d been bred from.
As I kept walking and sniffing at the air filled with bloodlust, I caught sight in my peripheral vision of a woman trying to run away, holding a loaf of bread tight to her chest. Behind her, a man caught her hair and cursed at her while trying to beat her up. I smiled wickedly. I would’ve preferred more machine guns, nukes, heads blown off and limbs torn, but I was getting there. Baby steps, right? I’d just awoken from a sleep thousands of years long.
I placed myself next to them, my arms crossed over my chest. Neither of them minded me, caught in their deadly dance. The woman fell to her knees, never letting go of that bread. She struggled to free herself, but the vendor’s grip was too tight. Still cursing at the woman, the man reached for the gun tucked in his belt.
I closed my eyes and reached forward to feel their blind fury. His for having been robbed. Hers for not being allowed a single loaf of bread to feed her family. There was blood to be drawn. But what a plot twist it turned out to be at the very end.
In an explosion of blind rage, the woman kicked him in the gut and reached for his gun. In the blink of an eye, he was the one on his knees and she was the one pointing a gun at his head. They both stopped for a second, allowing me to lick my lips for the sweet taste of wrath pouring out of them. The woman started shaking , her eyes travelling from the gun to the vendor on his knees before her like she couldn’t remember how she’d ended up in this situation.
She flinched and turned to me like she was just noticing I was there.
“Do it,” I repeated, spitting my venom in her open mouth. “Pull the trigger. He deserves it.”
“I, I can’t,” she cried, her whole body shaking.
“You can. Use that rage and pull the trigger. Kill him or you won’t be able to get that food to your family. It’s them or him. He would’ve killed you, raped you for a loaf of bread. Do it.”
And I read it in her eyes. Every time she’d taken a beating for less than this. The anger at the people, at the system who starved her family. At the man who would’ve shown her no mercy. And she put a bullet right between his eyes with no remorse.
His blood flowed under my feet as I turned away and kept walking. This had been fun, but I had bigger plans. More fatal wrath to harvest. Machine guns. Nukes. Heads blown off and limbs torn.
~SOUNDTRACK: Fall Out Boy – Novocaine~
Envy is a tricky thing. A sneaky little feeling. I was a silent devil.
I’d watched men build things for themselves. And then I’d watched them watch other men build things for themselves, and struggle to build bigger things than these men. It was a vicious game, a never-ending and self-amplifying cycle. It was a restless chase for more, more, more.
My awakening happened in Dubai. It was a strange, newly built place. Like an infant compared to the other ancient places imbued with history throughout the world, but I understood its charm and its connection to my mission. It was the classic tale. A man built a building. Out of envy, a man built a taller building. And another built a taller building. Until there was a building so tall it touched the clouds. Too tall, built on a rotten foundation. Mine. And so it collapsed.
I found it a fitting metaphor for humans. Everything they built in my name had a tendency of collapsing. And that is to say, most of it. They’d always been in a silly competition with one another.
The body of this beautiful mortal woman with a voluptuous body and long red hair allowed me to explore depths to my sin I looked forward to. I always did like to flirt with at least the edges of my brothers’ lines of work. And this mortal body was too lustful not to put it to good use. And from what I heard, humans did consider this Dubai a place of endless possibilities and obnoxious pleasures.
So I put on a dress and some high heels and took a page out of Lust’s playbook. I allowed myself to be desired, knowing that on whoever’s arm I’d end up tonight, the rest of them would turn green with envy and turn on each other.
Oh, how I enjoyed the game.
~SOUNDTRACK: Cage The Elephant – Ain’t no rest for the wicked~
Venezuela. What a joke. I would’ve preferred Italians, they’d always seemed people with more of an affinity towards me, but with their cuisine so flourishing, I was certain that was now Gluttony’s heaven. Or hell. I presume it depends on the connotations. Well, Venezuela would do. Location wasn’t important so long as there were people who loved themselves enough for me to take advantage of that. And there was no shortage of that these days.
Though I couldn’t say I’d ever be able to pull off a success as grand as the story of Narcissus. Poor boy. Such love for his own pretty face, and yet such a weak mind. Back then, they all knew me as the devil named Pride and their piousness and religious stubbornness to stay humble was an obstacle I often faced. But Narcissus was so easy to blind and even easier to drown. It brought me no small amount of pride to know people still spoke of it. What could I say? I was prone to my own corruption.
I looked around and stuffed my hands in my pockets. Such a sea of victims, I had to get to work. I couldn’t let my brothers have anything against me. I was the prideful one, after all, and I sure had plenty of ways to get creative about the downfall of human nature.
And then there was another one. Not one of the seven devils, but a sin nonetheless. Deadly, violent, fierce and merciless. The gravest one of them all. For when God made man, he gave him His most precious gift. Life.
And so, when the seven devils came and started spreading mayhem, she was there, too, for that final step when humans broke the ultimate law and took away God’s most precious gift. Hidden. Watching. Dooming. Waiting for her time.
It came sooner than she would’ve expected. Because that’s the way it always is. In a world of worthless humans, no better than animals susceptible to the influence of sin, there had to be one, just one stubborn human who dared the unthinkable. To be different.
Hello, everybody! I’m back with a brand new story!! And for those of you who don’t know my work, it’s a pleasure to have you here and enjoy the ride!! Seven Devils is a project that I’ve had in mind for a while now, bust just recently got to writing. I mean, it’s the seven deadly sins, guys. There’s some standards there and I don’t wanna screw it up.
The poem from the beginning is actually something I wrote back when the idea started catching shape in my head. Also, I really hope you enjoy the soundtrack for certain scenes. It gives a feel to it, I promise.
Man, I can’t help to hear your opinions! I’m super hyped up!
Lots of love,
xoxo3: Chapter 2: One man
CHAPTER 2 – ONE MAN
~SOUNDTRACK: Tom Walker – Heartland~
His name was Adam. Just Adam. A lone son of a bitch – a son, maybe, but God only knew whose bitch – sort of like a Jon Snow of Brooklyn, who’d lived his life in filthy orphanages and on streets painted with blood and violence. He didn’t complain. Twenty-five years of this shit and you sort of get used to never minding this lack of belonging, this aimlessness. He’d learned you’re better off not giving a flying fuck.
Most days he wasn’t so self-pitying. Most days he genuinely didn’t care. Most days he didn’t feel like cursing at his life and at whatever God he didn’t believe in. Most days he’d go about his business like any other day, with the past way behind him and an uncertain future he wasted no energy worrying about. Most days. But then there were some days when he woke up in his crappy little studio, in crappy Brooklyn, going to work at his crappy job fixing crappy cars and drinking crappy coffee, eating crappy food, partying in crappy clubs, smoking crappy pot, then going to sleep in his crappy bed. Some days he remembered. It came back to him, the realization he’d had back when he was just a kid that this isn’t how it’s supposed to be. Not all people live this crappy life. Some got lucky. And he wasn’t one of them. He’d always had to settle for the worst.
Today was one of those days. When his alarm went off at 6, he was already wide awake, staring at the ceiling. He could just tell it was gonna be one of those fucked up days. He climbed out of his lumpy bed lazily and went through the motions carelessly. Shower. Toothpaste. Brush. Cereal. Milk. Jeans and a shirt that still smelled decent. A couple of cigarettes. Keys. And out the door.
Adam walked the streets of Brooklyn with his shoulders slouched and his head down. It must have been sort of a reflex. He’d gotten used to making sure he didn’t stand out. In violent orphanages, on the streets, in the shady places and with the shady people he spent his days with, standing out gets you in trouble.
He made his way to the café where he’d worked a few years ago and walked in, his eyes instantly searching for Quinn. When he didn’t find her, he let out a disappointed sigh. He went to the counter and found Barry, Quinn’s coworker.
“Hey, Bar. The usual.”
Barry came back with a black coffee, with two lumps of sugar and cream and pushed it towards Adam. “There you go. Quinn told me you’d drop by.”
Adam clicked his tongue. “Could’ve sworn this morning was her shift.”
“It was,” Barry shrugged one shoulder. “But it’s mine and Martha’s anniversary tonight and she agreed to switch with me. She wanted me to tell you she’ll make it up to you tonight after her shift.”
Barry winked at him, but Adam just scowled. He and Quinn weren’t like that. She was his oldest friend and probably the only person in the whole shitty world he gave a damn about. They’d hooked up drunk a couple of times, but their friendship was something close to sacred and not to be tempered with. People didn’t get that.
Adam and Quinn had been friends ever since they were children in the same orphanage. They’d shared beatings, food, beds, bullying, nightmares and pretty much everything two kids who have nothing left can share. Adam had been trouble and Quinn had been his conscience. Then at 16, after about a dozen orphanages and the same terror repeated throughout all of them, Adam ran away. And two kids with nothing left became a boy with nothing left on the streets and a girl with nothing left missing him like crazy.
Adam had been through rock bottom and lower than that still. He’d slept on benches. He’d picked pockets. He’d wiped windshields. By the time Quinn had turned 18 and could leave the system, he’d managed to hook them both up with jobs in a café. In time, Adam had moved on as a mechanic while Quinn had stayed his favorite barista.
They were 25 now. Quinn was turning 25 today, or so she liked to say, because unlike him, she’d made up a fictional birthday since no one at the orphanage would ever bother to tell them that much. They’d spent over half their lives together and as much of a lone wolf that Adam was, he couldn’t imagine a timeline where he could have ever made it this far without Quinn.
“Alright,” he grabbed his coffee and turned away. “Tell Quinn I’ll be back after work. See you around, Bar.”
He left the café and headed towards the auto shop where he worked, knowing there were some shitty car there to remind him all about the shitty life he led. Well. Nothing new under the sun.
~SOUNDTRACK: Camila Cabello – Crying in the club~
When Adam went back at the café that night, he found Quinn sulking over a cup of coffee that he suspected was spiced with something stronger.
“Starting the party without me, queen Bee?” he nodded towards the cup and she just glared at him. “Uh oh,” Adam fake gasped. “I sense trouble.”
Quinn wrinkled her nose and let out a loud sigh, throwing her head back in frustration. “He dumped me.”
Adam made a quick scan through his memory, trying to remember what was the name of her latest boyfriend. It was something with T, definitely. Tom? Teddy? Tyler?
“Who? Trevor?” he tried, and was rewarded with another glare.
“Jack, Adam. His name is Jack. And he broke up with me because I told him I’m spending my birthday with you. He got jealous and got hysterical and—“ She sighed, trailing off and Adam grew more alert, sensing some implication he didn’t like.
“And what, Quinn?” he prompted her. “Did he get violent? He didn’t touch you, did he? Because if that motherfucker—“
“Chill, dad,” Quinn rolled her eyes at him. “He’d never dare. He knows you’d hunt him down and kill him and he’s scared of you. And I can defend myself, you know. We grew up in the same orphanage, Adam. And you’re the one who taught me how to throw a punch.”
His shoulders relaxed. “Then let’s go, queen Bee. We got a fake birthday to celebrate. No more moping over douche ex boyfriends.”
She looked up at him like a puppy, biting her bottom lip. “Do we have to? I’m not exactly in the mood for partying.”
Adam rolled his eyes at her. “Let’s go. I’ll tell you where you can shove your moods on our way to the club. You only fake turn 25 once, and the only Jack you’re allowed to think about tonight is Jack Daniels.”
He smirked over his shoulders, already on his way out, and Quinn couldn’t hold back a smile of her own as she followed him.
The music carried Quinn back to cloud nine where she and Adam belonged. She danced until she couldn’t feel her feet, smoked until it dried both her lungs and her eyes, drank until she couldn’t remember what she was trying to forget.
She was always like this. Gave her heart away for free, carelessly, and she always got it back in shreds because she never did know how to choose the right person to take care of it. And then it was always up to Adam to patch her up and walk her through her pity parties. But this is what they did. They fixed each other. They took care of each other, had been for almost 20 years. Adam was what she imagined family felt like.
She was glad he’d talked her into going out after all. Screw Jack and his stupid jealousy. Any men in her life were to know that he was the only constant for her, the one she was never letting go of. Somewhere along the way, she and Adam had stopped being just best friends and had started building a bond so strong it could never allow anyone between them. She couldn’t expect someone like Jack to understand that.
So she danced it out. She smoked it out. She drank it out. She surrendered herself to the music with complete abandonment and let her body spell it out for her. She let Adam’s hands at her waist guide her to the motions until her brain was numb and the outside world became a blur.
For in the small space between his body and hers, there was the safety she knew and trusted, there was the haven where she feared nothing and no one could hurt her.
Adam didn’t always enjoy night clubbing. Sure, there was drinking and there was smoking and there was sex in shady bathrooms, but it didn’t make him feel a certain way that was different from the way he normally felt.
He was enjoying himself tonight. He and Quinn screamed and sang loudly, trying to cover the deafening music, they’d lost count of beers and shots of tequila and funny-colored drinks and of cigarettes smoked. They were drunk and high and he was glad they could make each other forget about whatever shit was going on in both of their lives, if only for one night of fun.
“I’m gonna get us some more drinks,” he yelled over the music in Quinn’s ear and she just nodded, too lost in the feel of the beat in her bones and the sweat dripping down her neck and the smoke in her lungs. He smiled. He was glad she was having fun. They both deserved it.
He made his way to the bar, unaware of the pair of eyes fixated on him as if he were a doe in the jungle, about to be hunted down.
~SOUNTRACK: Skylar Grey – Dance without you (Ricky Luna Remix from Step Up Revolution)~
She watched him across the dance floor. She’d had her eyes on him ever since he’d walked into the club with that dull little girl on his arm. But then they’d gotten closer, dancing with their bodies glued together, getting lost in music and booze and pot and in each other. And she could feel the desire oozing from both of them.
And she got hungry.
She waited for the boy to reach the bar and went hunting.
She swayed her hips , pushing her blonde locks away from her face to reveal her rich cleavage. Poor boy stood no chance.
She let her hand brush his shoulder and travel smoothly down his arm before speaking. “Hey, handsome. Care to buy a thirsty girl a drink?”
He turned to her confused, his mouth swinging wide open as he took her in. And she couldn’t blame him. By human standards, she was quite irresistible. Wasn’t that the whole point? Though she doubted humans paid much attention to resisting temptation these days.
“I, umm, hi,” he stammered, still a bit dizzy. He was falling right into her webs.
“Hi,” she smiled sweetly at him, sitting in the chair beside him and crossing her legs in such manner that the cut of her dress revealed enough to have him drooling a little. “I’m Lust.”
He blinked up at her and cocked an eyebrow. “Lust? What, you’re an exotic dancer or something?”
She looked him over a little puzzled. Not quite the reaction she’s expected. By now, men were usually tripping over their tongues to get to her. Maybe he was just one of the more resistant ones.
She forced a chuckle. “Oh, I can be anything you want me to be. Anything you’ve ever dreamed of.” She slid a hand beneath the collar of his shirt, feeling him shudder a little. Perhaps not quite so resistant as he’d come off as. “What do you say we get out of here to play some… exotic games?”
He stared her down, looking as though he was considering it. This wasn’t right. There should’ve been no doubt. No moment of hesitation. No second guessing. She could read the temptation in his posture, on his face, in his eyes, in the quiver of his lips, and yet he resisted. Then he threw a look over his shoulder at the girl who kept dancing not far from them, and then he let out a sigh before speaking.
“Thanks, umm, Lust,” he stumbled over her name. “Very generous offer. But I’m kinda here with someone, so—“
He trailed off, grabbing the beers and heading towards the girl on the dance floor, leaving Lust with her mouth wide open and utter shock cursing throughout her mortal body.
A human resisting her. This hadn’t happened in centuries. She wasn’t one to be denied. She was the one sin people found it easiest and most pleasurable to give in to. Who did this worthless human think he was?
She smirked and clutched her fists tight to keep from crossing that dance floor and sticking her claws into his jugular. It would appear she needed reinforcement.