Twisted Roses

Page 32

I turn around to face him, my glare reproachful. He’s standing no more than ten feet away, partially a silhouette in the night’s shadows. But I know his gaze is on me—I can feel his eyes on me and the tension charged in the space between us.
No other person has ever confused me more. I’ve never been so frustrated with someone at the same time I’ve craved them. His mere presence infuriates me while desire and a yearning for intimacy rise up inside me.
He’s the only person who understands me. And he frustrates me even more for it.
We’re not good for each other. The more I give in, the less chance I’ll ever have of returning to before.
The Delphine Adams I’m supposed to be.
“I never want to speak to you again,” I tell him from where I stand. “I never want to see you again. Stay away from me.”
His head tilts slightly to the left. “You’re angry with me.”
“It’s over,” I say, swallowing hard. “Last Friday. That was the last time. I need you out of my life.”
Salvatore doesn’t try to stop me as I start in the opposite direction. No protests or objections or counterarguments. No reaction at all.
He simply listens. He watches as I turn around and walk away.
Hopefully for good this time.
10. salvatore
Stefania is moreof a mess than usual. The incident at Nirvana is only the beginning. She goes on to leave me numerous voice messages on my personal number. I’m told she attempts to sneak out of Lucius’ mansion and drive all the way to my compound in Northam—drunk off her ass again, presumably.
Her calls go unanswered. Her visit thwarted.
Funny that I’m ignoring Stefania’s calls while Delphine continues to ignore mine.
But I have no time for Stefania’s belligerent antics. I don’t give a fuck what she wants to rant and rave about as she slops down wine and cries so hard her make up melts off.
“Salvi,” she whines in one of the messages. “Pick up the phone, Salvi. It’s your mother—the woman who gave birth to you. Big like a… hic… turkey. Your head… it was huge! Ha, ha, ha. Why don’t you answer? Hello!”
I grunt out a laugh listening to her slurred pleas and then press the delete button. The more she begs, the more inclined I am to continue icing her out.
She spent half my childhood on vacation. The other half, she turned a blind eye to Lucius’ raging temper.
Once I get my revenge on Lucius, I don’t give a damn if I ever see or hear from her again. Assuming I live and Lucius doesn’t kill me. She wouldn’t care either way.
“You think I’m not for real?!” she screams wildly in another voice message. “All the times I tried… I loved you forever! You just don’t give a shit, you asshole. I never wanted you!”
“Another one?” Stitches says, joining my side as I walk through my compound.
I pocket my phone. “She’s left five in three days. If she reaches double digits, I’m blocking her number. It’s all drunk gibberish.”
“Why now all of a sudden?”
“She’s lonely. Lucius has been out of town establishing expansion efforts.”
“But doesn’t he ignore her anyway?”
“Thestaffignores her. Nobody takes her seriously.”
I barge into the general office that’s relegated for my soldiers. It’s nothing special—a few desks and computers, along with a sofa, big screen TV, and mini bar.
During their working hours, they’resupposedto be getting shit done. Everybody has different tasks and responsibilities. My operation has grown significantly even in the few short months since I’ve returned to Northam. I’ve recruited new soldiers and practically broken off from Lucius’ organization.
You could say I’ve formed my own altogether.