I turn the corner, and he's sitting at the table with the broken leg. He's glaring at that fucking whiskey bottle again. But this time, I'm not sure if he wants to drink it or smash it. And judging by the look on his face, maybe over someone's head.
And I'm not even sure why he brought the damned thing.
"This place smells like sewage," I tell him.
"Open a window."
I hear the others upstairs, tromping around this house of horrors. I won't be surprised when one of them falls through the ceiling or something.
"Why did you bring us here?"
"It was the only remote place that I could think of."
I gape at him.
"Remote? What the hell's going on?"
He ignores me, reaching into his pocket to retrieve what I already know will be his cigarettes. I'm fuming, because I'm so fucking confused and I hate that. Besides, if I have to watch him smoke one more fucking cigarette, I'm going to lose my shit.
"Whose house is this?" I demand.
He ignores me again.
I've had enough. I've had enough of the fucking cigarettes and the whiskey bottle that he'll never open. I've had enough of the shadiness and the secrets. I've had enough of him ignoring me. I've had enough of him walking away.
So I'm going to do it this time.
I'm going to be the one to walk away.
"You know what?" I scoff, shaking my head. "Forget this. I'm fucking leaving…"
I don't hang around to see his reaction. I turn on my heel and go to leave the kitchen, ready to go rally up the others and take anyone who doesn't want to stick around to be murdered fucking Friday the 13th style.
"Stop," he commands.
And he sounds different. His voice is slightly rougher, angry maybe. I turn slowly as he stands, the wooden legs of the chair scraping against the battered wooden planks beneath them.
"Stop for what?" I challenge.
"No one's leaving this fucking house."
Now his voice is smooth, too smooth, and menacing. I look into his eyes, really look, for the first time in a while. I inhale sharply. His eyes are dark and intense and threatening. He means what he just said, and he wants me to know it.
"What's going on?" My voice shakes more than I want it to.
"I think it's time I tell you the truth, Bella."
In an instant, my heart is fluttering and not in a good way. Something in his tone awakens something in my gut. I know instinctively that I should be nervous. Afraid, even.
And I am.
"The truth about what?" I manage to croak.
And with the words he says next, my whole world, everything that I've tried so desperately to hold together in the last many years…