Chapter twenty-nine

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I was sat in my room on the floor with the lights turned off.

A quarter empty bottle of tequila dangling limply in my hand as I stared distantly up at the ceiling.

Devon had dropped us all home after pancake palace and I had avoided talking to Azael as much as possible.

Mainly due to the conversation we had, had before things had gotten... heated.

I'd never answered his question, and he'd never asked more. I wanted to keep it that way. But I knew it wouldn't stay that way.

The only hope I was clinging too was that perhaps he had forgotten about it? And if he hadn't, I was praying that he wouldn't mention it in front of Alyssa or Elliot.

The sound of Elliot laughing had recently fluttered through the halls now that my father had returned home.

It was good, I supposed, that my dad was home. That Elliot had both parental figures in his life now even though neither of them were perfect.

But it was strange him being there 24/7. Strange seeing him in the mornings, after school, before I went to bed. And it was even stranger seeing him with my mother when the spark between them had long since faded and they were in dear need of a divorce.

But their constant arguing and my fathers obsession with teasing her and making her angry was not good for El.

I hadn't spoken to my little brother much recently, so I dragged myself from the comfort of my bed, placing the tequila on my nightstand.

It was late at night, and the sky had bled into a jet black, the stars stark in the sea of endlessness.

It was raining, too, with thunder echoing around every now and then. Which was also the reason on why I had decided to drink some tequila. Not to get drunk, but to relax as I listened to the rain drops landing and dribbling down my window and to listen to the deep melody of the thunder.

I did that sometimes. Drank just enough to experience some of the benefits of the alcohol but too little to get the downsides, the headaches, the nausea, etc.

I slipped into the kitchen. Golden light flooded every inch of the room within seconds as I flicked on the light switch and began filling two glasses full of water.

I sauntered into the living room, seeing Elliot wriggling and laughing on the couch as my father laughed and mercilessly tickled him.

The two of them looked like two separate pictures. One of a young boy with so much life to live, and the other the exact same boy who had lived a lot. Elliot was the splitting image of my father, just many decades younger.

I didn't want to take the joy away from El, but it was way past his bed time and he had school in the morning, I moved beside our dad.

Elliots wide, glowing eyes turned to me, and I smiled down at him, "C'mon, El, let's get you to bed," I set both glasses of water on the table opposite us.

"Please can I have 10 more minutes Ria?" Elliot giggled, sitting up and picking up a glass of water with both hands.

I opened my mouth to give into him, as I always did, and would always do, but my father beat me to it, "You can stay up as long as you like,"

I think the fuck not.

I turned to him, "He has school in the morning,"

My father tucked his hands into his pockets and shrugged, turning to look back down to Elliot who was gulping down water like his life depended on it, "Want the day of school tomorrow?"

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