Home > Brutal Prince : An Enemies To Lovers Mafia Romance(7)

Brutal Prince : An Enemies To Lovers Mafia Romance(7)
Author: Sophie Lark

“Fine,” I say at last. “I was in the library upstairs. A small fire started—”


“Yes. Quit shouting or I won’t tell you anything else.”

“How did this fire start?”

I squirm in my seat.

“I might have . . . accidentally . . . let the curtains get a little bit in the fireplace.”

“Porca miseria, Aida,” Dante swears. “We just went there to drink their liquor and watch their fireworks, not burn their fucking house down!”

“It’s not going to burn down,” I say, without being entirely confident in my statement. “I told you, Callum was right there.”

“That’s not better!” Dante explodes. “Now he knows you did it!”

“He might not. He might not even know who I am.”

“I doubt that very much. He’s not as stupid as the rest of you are.”

“Why am I included in this?” Sebastian says.

“Because you’re stupid,” Dante replies. “Even if you didn’t do anything tonight, specifically.”

Sebastian laughs. It’s impossible to offend him.

“Where were you?” Dante says, rounding on Nero.

“I was on the main level,” Nero says calmly. “With Nora Albright. Her father owns the Fairmont in Millennium Park. He called me a greasy little criminal once. So I fucked his daughter in the Griffins’ formal dining room. Sort of killed two birds with one stone, in terms of revenge.”

Dante is shaking his head in disbelief.

“I can’t believe you guys. You’re acting like children. I never should have let you go over there.”

“Oh, get off it,” Nero says. He’s not one to take Dante’s shit, even if it means coming to blows. “Since when are you a good boy? You hate those paddy fucks as much as we do. Who cares if we ruined their party?”

“You’re gonna care if Callum Griffin gets that Alderman seat. He’s gonna tie us up in red tape and shut down every one of our projects. He’ll bury us.”

“Yeah?” Nero says, dark eyes narrowed. “Then we’ll go pay him a visit with a cattle prod and a pair of pliers. Go to work on him until he’s more cooperative. I’m not scared of the Griffins or anybody else.”

Dante just shakes his head, too irritated to even try to reason with us.

I’m torn. On the one hand, Dante’s right that we were all a bit reckless. On the other, the look on Callum Griffin’s face when his library caught fire was pretty fucking priceless.

“Turn here,” Sebastian says to Nero, pointing.

Nero takes a right on Division Street.

“Where do you think you’re going?” Dante says.

“Some of the kids are gonna hang out after the party. I said I’d meet them,” Sebastian says.

“Fuck that. You all need to go home,” Dante says.

Nero has already pulled the car up to the curb. Sebastian hops out of the convertible, swinging his long legs over the side as easily as getting out of bed.

“Sorry, big brother,” he says genially. “But I don’t have a curfew. And you’re not my mama.”

Nero looks like he’d like to do the same, but he’s stuck driving Dante back home. Faced with my angry big brother and the prospect of him ratting me out to Dad, I think Sebastian’s got the right idea. I scramble across the seat and jump out of the car, too.

“Get back here!” Dante shouts.

I’m already running after Sebastian, calling over my shoulder, “I’ll be home in a couple of hours! Don’t wait up!”

Sebastian slows down when he hears me coming. Even when he’s just ambling, I have to jog to keep up. Those damn long legs of his.

“Was the fire really an accident?” he says.

“More or less.” I shrug.

He chuckles. “I didn’t even get to see inside the house. Bet it’s nice.”

“Yeah. If you like pastel colors.”

Sebastian stuffs his hands in his pockets, strolling along. His dark, curly hair hangs down over his eyes. He’s got the curliest hair of any of us. He could probably grow it into an Afro if he wanted to.

“Nessa looked nice,” he says.

“Yeah, she’s pretty,” I agree. “Don’t get any ideas though. Papa would burst a blood vessel.”

“I’m not,” Sebastian says. “You know what Mom always said: ‘Calm water doesn’t need more water—you need wind to move your sail.’ I probably need to find a little maniac like you.”

I grin up at him. “If I get married, it’ll definitely be to someone who doesn’t give me any shit. Can you imagine going from being bossed around by Dante to bossed around by somebody else? Fuck that. I’d rather be single forever. In fact, I wouldn’t mind that at all.”

We’re just coming to Dave and Buster’s, but I can already see through the window that Sebastian’s friends aren’t inside yet.

“What should we do while we wait?” Sebastian asks me.

“Are there any ice cream places around?”

“Didn’t you eat at the party?”

“Yeah.” I shrug. “But that was a long time ago.”

Seb laughs. “Alright, I’m not gonna turn down ice cream.”

We walk a little further toward the lake until we find a place that has soft serve. Sebastian gets a cup; I get a cone. We take it out to the boardwalk to eat, walking along the pier so we can look down at the water.

The lake is so big that it looks like an ocean. It has waves just like the sea, and storms that blow in. Not right now, though. Right now, the water is as calm as I’ve ever seen. We’ve walked all the way to the end of the pier, to the point that juts out furthest over the lake.

Sebastian finishes his ice cream, chucking the cup into the nearest trash can. I’m still working on my cone.

We’re chatting about his classes at school, and about mine. I’m taking courses at Loyola—a little bit of everything. Psychology, poli-sci, finance, marketing, history. I like taking whatever I’m interested in at the moment. Unfortunately, I’m not sure how it’s gonna all add up to a degree.

I think Papa’s getting annoyed with me. I know he wants me to finish up and come work with him full-time. But he’s not going to let me do the interesting or difficult stuff—he’s already got Dante and Nero for that. He’s going to try to shunt me off in some boring office doing busywork. And that sounds like a fucking nightmare to me.

I’m the baby of the family and the only girl. There’s never been much in the way of expectations laid out for me. Maybe if my mother were alive, it would be different. But I’ve basically run wild my whole life. As long as I wasn’t getting in too much trouble, my father had more important things to worry about.

My brothers are good friends to me, but they have their own lives.

Nobody needs me, not really.

That’s okay, though. I’m not whining about it. I like being free and easy. Right now, I’m hanging out with Seb, eating ice cream, and enjoying a summer night. What more do I need?

That feeling of contentment lasts about five seconds. Then I look up and see two men walking toward us. One’s wearing a suit, the other a hoodie and jeans. The suited guy has brown hair, freshly cut, and his hands balled into fists at his sides. The expression of fury on his face is all too familiar to me, since I last saw it about forty minutes ago.

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