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Demons Stacey
Author: Marriott





With a cigarette in between my lips, I stare at my black suit in the mirror and pull my tie into place. “I can’t believe you’re attending that skank’s funeral.” Beatrice’s whiny voice scrapes on my nerves. I spin on her, getting an inch from her face. Near enough that she can see my eyes and discern the inner demons that reside within them.

“You will not speak of her that way.” My jaw is tense as I hold the cigarette pinched between my thumb and index finger. “It’s best you know that I will never love anyone the way I love her.”

She gazes at me, astonished that I would say such a thing to her. But I'm completely devastated and infuriated, and I wish I had spoken up all the times before when she berated Cas.

“I’m marrying you because I have to, not because I want to.” Yeah, I know I’m walking a fine line. If she blabs to her father or my Nonno, I'm in deep trouble, but I couldn’t care less. Cas is gone and nothing will be the same again. Beatrice is about to start screaming at me when I hear a loud pounding at my door. It’s several knocks and they’re all out of sync. “Open up,” AJ says from the other side.

AJ, Edward, and Emery are standing in the hallway when I open the door. They’re dressed in black too. Edward is wearing a suit similar to mine, but of course, I look way hotter. Their faces match mine. Tired and wrecked with grief.

AJ walks through first and the other two behind him. “Well, the slut had good taste. I can say that.” Beatrice says, looking us over. My temper flares, but Emery moves in and gets in her face before I can. He towers over her. A sinister feeling takes over the room, making the hairs on the back of my neck rise.

Emery's fury has reached a level I've never seen before. He’s raging. We all are. Cas gave us warnings, but we still couldn't save her and we have no idea who is responsible or where to start looking.

“You better be careful. You don’t know who my daddy is,” Beatrice retorts, squaring her shoulders. The tension in the air thickens as Emery's face reddens and he finally snaps. He wraps his large hand around her neck, walking her up against the wall. Emery may not be speaking, but his message is loud and clear. He doesn’t give a fuck who her daddy is or what the consequences of his actions are.

Although I can't stand Beatrice and I haven't removed her from my list of possible suspects—I can’t let him kill her. Even if it would solve some of my problems. “Woah,” I say, yanking Emery back. I clasp my hands together, resting them in front of my dick—over my pants, of course and give her a cold calculated stare.

Taking a drag of my cigarette, I slowly release the smoke in spiraling clouds. I keep staring down at Beatrice with disgust, my nostrils flaring with contempt. My smoke swirls around her head.

“You’re not going to be telling daddy anything. I’m keeping my eye on you because I’m not sure you’re not involved in Cas’ death. And you call a hit on any of them—” I tilt my head in the guys’ direction. “I’ll know, and this whole shit show will be over. No marriage.” I shrug, letting her know how little fucks I give. Before Cas left us, I didn’t want to rot in prison. I’m still not fond of the idea, but I care significantly less.

Plus, I know in Beatrice’s world there’s nothing worse to her than her not getting her way. She looks at me with a mixture of shock and confusion, as if she can’t recognize the monster before her. I curl the corners of my lips into a menacing smirk. “Yeah, you see it, don’t you? Told you I’m not that sixteen-year-old you met—anymore.” Her face flushes, and her body shakes with anger.

The monster I’ve become wasn’t born overnight. No, he was sculpted. It started with my parents abandoning me when I was young. Don’t even know who the fuck they are or if they’re still alive. Can’t forget about good ole gramps. He took me in and raised me. Well, kind of. He was gone a lot. It was the house help that raised me, even some of Nonno’s men.

And then after my last trip to Italy when I was sixteen, Gramps saw the rage I had in me at my short stick drawing of a fucking life. He introduced me to the taste of blood like I’d never had it before. Sometimes I crave killing as much as I do sex and nicotine.

“Fine, you can go to this stupid funeral, but I’m coming.” She starts stomping, but I shake my head. “You’re not coming,” I tell her. Dragging my thumb across my lips with my cigarette between my fingers, I desperately try to calm myself.

“In true Cas fashion, I have to say that no one wants you there—you Veruca Villain,” Edward says, and a strangled laugh escapes me. I try so hard to bite it back, but I can’t. It turns into a full-on laugh. Beatrice stares at us in confusion.

“She was so hilarious when it came to name-calling. She’d be fucking proud.” I tell him as I clutch his shoulder, laughter continues to tear through me. I’m not sure if it’s exhaustion or what, but I also never expected that from Edward. AJ looks confused, but Emery is smirking.

“Come on, man. We’ll explain it to you on the way there.” I tell AJ. He doesn’t go to school with us which means I don’t think he’s ever heard Cas’ name call. We file out the door, leaving a pissed-off Beatrice in my kitchen.

It’s depressing as shit when we walk through the gothic-style church’s doors. There’s no way I’d be doing this for anyone other than Cas. I hate funerals. As suspected, there are reporters everywhere. Cas’ death is plastered through Buffalo City, NY. Her dad hasn’t come out to say anything about it as they search for the killer. And I would assume maybe he was killed too, but his body hasn’t been found.

The guys and I talked about it, and we feel like whoever’s responsible for what happened to Cas could probably have gotten away with murder. She always said the people that were after her, could make her disappear.

Cameras flash in our direction as we all take a seat. Everyone from school is here, even the girls that Cas didn’t like. Except for Andy, she’s still missing. No doubt that they’re here for a few seconds of fame.

She was cremated so her body is in the matte black urn and the fact that it’s covered with upside-down crosses tells me someone close to her picked out that urn. We weren’t sure if there was going to even be a funeral because it seemed like she had no one but us and her dad. Maybe her trainer, Kel? I haven’t seen him yet either, though.

We all sit in silence, staring down at the floor. Also, something weird about this situation is that we all offered to give statements about how we found her, but the cops said they didn’t need one and cleared us as suspects. Listen, I’m not saying I’m not grateful, but there’s something else going on here. And it fucking sucks because I don’t know what the hell it is.

There’s music playing, and it’s definitely music Cas would have picked. “Ready for War” by Neoni & Unsecret plays. We all still and give each other a look as we listen to the lyrics. It confirms what we already know. We need to find out who put this funeral together.

Once it’s over, we all stand up. There wasn’t a priest, and no one spoke. Until now. Whistling, I grab everyone’s attention. “We want to talk to a reporter. No, scratch that. We want to talk to all of them.” I don’t have to ask twice. We watch as they make their way over to us. We look at each other and take a deep breath. A few people with cameras approach us first. Then the others join, gathering around us. “Is it true you guys were all dating her?” A woman asks. We nod, but we won’t be answering any more questions.

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