3

AN: This is the result of being in an independent study school that blocks access to fanfiction but in which one can spend all day on the pc without being disturbed. And fictionpress and lj both failed to deliver anything that would satisfy the unique craving a Cruel Intentions style story would offer. So I'm here. Writing. Again. I have yet to find a fandom or even a fp that has such a blend of delicious darkness as CI has, so I may just have to surrender myself to it. I know it's been a while since my last update- I'm annoying that way, apologies. Thanks all for the input, it's good to see this is affecting people :) This chapter will lighten up slightly.


Chapter Three

I wanted to ram my car into her.

I wanted to hear her scream; watch the blood tear through her blemish-free skin and cascade across those pale arms of hers like the river of her evil drowning her at last.

I wanted to permanently cease her constant cutting remarks that would feel worse than a blade stabbing into my internal organs.

I wanted to make her stop.

Idiot. Idiot. Idiot.

I deserved this for once again letting myself be blinded by her and ignoring my good sense. Did I retain any intelligence while around her?

Maybe it was the way she could melt her eyes when she looked at me. Mold them into this expression of exquisite depth that made me forget that she was the smoothest deception I've ever had to deal with. There was something about the way she could look at me with just the proper hint of vulnerability; never enough of it to trigger the suspicion but enough to subtly make me fold like all the other guys.

I'm beginning to truly think no one will ever match her. No one will ever be able to defeat her. She can make you not care about winning- that is the quality of her that frightens me the most. She can look at me and make me want to protect her, defying all logic I should have imbedded into my very core that tells me sharply that she needs protecting as much as Blaine needs pussy.

And look how I crumpled again. I folded. I fell for it.

Had I less self control, I would have easily found myself strangling the bitch.

She wasn't human.

And now I have to win. I have to do something. This isn't just a need for revenge any more, it isn't just wounded pride. I have to do this or she will ruin every single life she comes across; a plague that will never be cured. If I don't do this, none of her future boyfriends ever will. She will go on. I simply can't let that happen. I feel I owe it to the world itself to step in and crush her. A mission, if you will.

I had let her win and if I didn't take back the victory…

With resignation, I lifted my head which had been resting against the steering wheel. I had felt a severe urge to break something expensive but held back at the house for I knew she would return and find only satisfaction once she realized how affected I was. I hadn't quite killed the maddening thirst to cut off her head yet but if I sat in this car stoically for any longer I would hate myself even more.

The sad thing is I may just be angrier at myself than I am with her.

I should have seen it coming.

The victory's won and the gloating begins- that's always the moment when the defeated rise up and back stab you. Never, never go back right after a win. Never, never stop to absorb the enormity of what just incurred. You haven't won until you're hours away from the scene.

And for fuck's sake, don't go back to offer the losing side a dose of comfort.

I was weak.

I was pathetic.

I was absolutely revolting.

But she did this. She did this. If ever we had a chance at actual contentment, it would always be her that decided to fuck up the moment. If we were married one day and blissfully happy, she'd probably panic and I'd come home to find her bedding the pool boy. She was addicted to hate, to turmoil, to pain. She got off on seeing me hurt. A true sadist. And it wasn't as if she wanted any real happiness for herself. If she did, she wouldn't be doing what she's doing. She's scared of a world where she doesn't need to make life-ruining plots. She knows she wouldn't be able to function in such a world. It isn't in her character to survive anything that is typical.

There is always an annoying argument that wages in my mind.

Does she act this way because she knows of no other way to act? Because she is actually terrified and too stubborn to back down?

Or am I kidding myself with these delusions?

I could easily mean absolutely nothing to her. This could just genuinely amuse her.

I have known her far too long for this to just be a game. She may be a hard ass, but she isn't immune. We are family and I am all she has. If this is just a game, her entire existence is one mutilated show. If this is a game, I have all the more reason to pity her because it would mean she truly has no one to turn to but herself; and we all know how much that would blow.

Why do I want her so badly?

Why is it of such critical importance that I make her see me, notice me, give a fuck about me?

Why do I crave her respect, like some toddler reaching out for their mother?

Why am I so willing to put myself in the line of fire when I know she will be incapable of doing anything but make me regret it?

It can't be the 'thrill of the chase'. I have done my share of chasing and wooing, and subsequently winning and fucking and leaving. It's enjoyable and I will admit I do occasionally become, shall we say, obsessed, with my subject of the week, but I don't just submit to this extent of humiliation. It can't be the thrill.

To say it's because I feel something for her can't be entirely correct either.

How can you love someone who has shown nothing but cruelty to you?

She's twisted and horrible. And I keep going back for more. Am I curious about her?

Am I intrigued, as a scientist may be over a new strand of some virulent bacteria?

If I had her, would I still want her?

Are all my feelings for her as shallow as a mere desire to win a competition, the thrill gone once the game is done?

Or am I just a needy jerk off who just wants her to care?

I'm not normally like this.

I don't normally care.

I shouldn't care.

I shouldn't be this upset.

But I do and I am and I don't fucking want to anymore.

She made me this way, she keeps me this way, she will forever enjoy seeing me this way. I am her creation. A corrupted soul she must poison every now and then just to make sure any redeeming glimmers I may demonstrate are efficiently extinguished, eliminating hope for me to be any different from her. She keeps me this way because I am like her and if I weren't like her, she would be left to herself. She keeps me this way because if she was left alone she would feel as much loathing as I do about the person she is.

I want to hurt her. I want to make her bleed. I want to make her cry.

But first I want to make her smile. I want to make her laugh. I want to make her feel safe and warm and happy. With me.

Carpet goes rip. Kathryn breaks.

I want to do to her what she did to me, what she continually does to me.

I win and I can be free from her. I lose and I will remain her bitch. I lose and I will have just spat in Annette's face.

Don't be a moron this time.

Don't screw this up.

There's no time now. There never seems to be enough. The victory will come and I'll regret it but I know I'll regret it more if I let it slip away again. I want her so much and I care so fucking much but I'm not enough for her and I never was. I ask myself why I still care so much but that question can't be answered. I care because she is Kathryn and that is explanation enough. I need to hurt her. If she can feel real hurt, I will evoke it somehow no matter what the cost.

My complete dedication to whatever challenge I had decided to pick up was at once frightening in its intensity and soothing in its guarantee. She always found entertaining my obsessions, my elaborate thoughts, my tortured deconstruction of every detail but it was my single-mindedness that allowed me to have anything I ever desired. There was nothing I had ever been denied if I truly sought it; nothing but her, I suppose. Despite the fact that I had slept with her several times today, I didn't have her in the respect that she clearly wasn't enamored by me in the way that other girls were after sex with me. I didn't own her. Kathryn didn't want me yet, not like the others had. You can't lose something you never wanted to begin with. So I had to make her want me. Had to change her perceptions. Optimum pain could be evoked in this way and this way alone.

My calm, rational, emotionless side whispered that I'd be better off just leaving as I so originally intended. Walk away and cut her out completely. Except then it would look like I was running away. Can't have that, can we?

I sighed. She ruined all my plans.

I took a final glance at the map laid out beside me, the wonderful connection to a new place without all this crap, folded it up, and stuffed it back in the dashboard. Picking up my bag of items, I turned the car off and made my way back to my home.

Guess I wasn't leaving after all.

Couldn't now.

The possibility of a fresh start was so very appealing, too.

xXx

Kathryn was smirking to herself. I could tell. She had her back to me and was sitting halfway across a room filled with a few dozen people but I knew she was smirking to herself.

The Hargroves had taken it upon themselves to set up a memorial dinner for Annette. Even though they had already orchestrated the school assembly and luncheon, not to mention the "official" funeral which would be taking place in a handful of days, they felt it necessary to herd everyone together yet again. If I wasn't making an honest attempt to be less cynical, I'd say her parents were purposefully capitalizing on their daughter's death.

At least half the people in this room hadn't known Annette all that well, if at all. To them, this was an excuse to socialize, network, be their filthy heartless selves. It may well be labeled a fucking party for all the grieving and remembering going on.

And Kathryn wasn't helping things. Stupid bitch.

She was working the crowd and easily making even those who knew Annette forget that it was her death that brought them here tonight.

My slut of a sister was wearing a deceptively smoldering dress that no one would be able to call whorish in itself, but was clearly meant to subtly imbed its image against one's mind, calling upon a subtle erotic fantasy in every straight male's subconscious. It was black, clearly, but somehow she managed to choose a black that was…darker than the other blacks in the room. In a room coloured with one shade, hers still stood out as much as if she had adorned a crimson dress. Tight against her sleek frame and clinging almost protectively against her, the dress was off the shoulder with long sleeves, elegantly showing off her collar bone. It had a straight cut instead of a v-neck but a thin slit careened through the middle, gliding smoothly over her breasts and exposing just a sliver of creamy skin in between the blanket of darkness.

One admiring the cut would find themselves startled to realize that the slit was very much revealing a private view of her bare chest, albeit only a millimeters worth, but still stunningly able to take away your breath. It was the type of dress that only appeared orgasmic if you looked at it at a certain angle, while thinking a certain thought. It only lasted for a moment but that moment came and was savoured and not forgotten.

She was sex on legs and couldn't be called out on it. It irked me.

I said she was smirking. Part of that amusement would come from the fact that she is clearly overshadowing Annette, but a larger part would stem of course from my mere presence at the event. She spotted me the moment I walked through the doors and her mouth instantly quirked upwards with self gratification. I hadn't left town and she was silently gloating that she was the cause of that. She would have won either way. Had I left the city, she would have the same expression. It was worth enduring this embarrassment. I may forfeit the battle but it was for the greater good of the cause. I would cripple her.

In the meantime, I kept my expression unreadable and forced my body to relax. She would notice if I held myself tensely and she would be all too gleeful. It troubled me that I was watching her, hating her, consumed by her at my girlfriend's memorial dinner but what the hell. I was already a lying, drug using, alcohol abusing, high school failing, philandering jack ass. May as well add in hypocrite to the list of my offenses.

Kathryn felt the need to solidify her elation by sauntering over to my side. Yes, I can see you have sensual hips, but do make it blatantly obvious. Fucking whore. "I thought you were leaving, brother?"

"I'm here for Annette." I answered politely.

Her eyes shone with laughter. "Of course." Is that who you were thinking about when you fucked me continually this afternoon?

I wasn't going to react.

"Leaving the city after the funeral, then?"

"Decided to stay after all."

"Realized you just have too many attachments here?"

"Actually, I realized how close I needed to keep my liabilities."

"You seem stressed. The death of Annette must be weighing so heavily against you." She clucked sympathetically.

Don't react. Don't react. Don't react. Don't play into her notion of what you will do. Keep her completely confused. Don't be angry. How sad is it that I need a pep talk when conversing with her now? Goes to show how different our relationship has become. She never did know when to toe the boundaries…or perhaps she just never realized I had them too.

"Just a little tired." I said, a small smile flitting across my lips. Instead of indulging my desire to slap her, I affectionately squeezed her exposed shoulder a centimeter above a hickey I knew I had left.

Her eyebrows lifted minutely in surprise at my reference and I felt a swelling of smugness.

Leaning close to her ear, I lowly told her, "Just so you know, there aren't any hard feelings- aside from the physical ones. That looks like a very constricting dress. Perhaps you would like help removing it later?"

"Can't get enough, can you?" She smiled, though I knew she was suspiciously trying to work out how I had managed to jump back so quickly. If there weren't so many people around and we weren't supposed to be mourning, maybe the bull shit wouldn't have been layered on as thick as we were slathering it, but there were… and so this game had to be played, however ridiculous.

"If I say no, will you agree to another round?"

"Inappropriate of you, don't you think?"

"Well, you treat me like an object and I'm beginning to see the benefits of accepting that and reciprocating."

This threw her and she frowned.

"I mean, if having you tell me I'm an object that amuses you justifies to yourself that it is perfectly important to sleep with me…do humiliate me again." I nuzzled her neck, deciding the act was beneficial enough to risk people muttering about the fucked up intimacy of those stepsiblings in the corner. "If you want, I'll even cry this time."

Kathryn pulled back slightly. I was fully aware that she wouldn't buy this. She wasn't an idiot. Smoothing down my suit, she ran her hands down my chest and then against my shoulders, finishing with a condescending pat. "Now, Sebastian. Don't be embarrassed. We both know you cried last time, too." And with one last infuriating all-knowing smile, she strode away from me. She glanced back to make sure I was watching her and the expression on her face was akin to her sticking her tongue out and declaring nyah nyah nyah.

Instead of pouting, I smirked and did the clearly recognizable blow-job motion with my tongue and curled fist.

Her eyebrow quirked despite herself. She was confounded. Batting her eyelashes daintily to hold up appearances, she looked away and kept walking.

The night was young and I would evoke a reaction from her, even if this act made me want to push her off the Goddamned building.

I decided that Kathryn's comment earlier hadn't been off and I was being inappropriate. Feeling the familiar ebbing of guilt cloud me once more, I made my way towards the centre of the room. An enlarged portrait of Annette was propped up on top of a table, next to an open book and a box. Disgust filled me as I quickly understood that this was for monetary sympathies. Glancing at the ledger, the revulsion built up. People were using her death as a platform to broadcast how rich and generous they all were. The sums listed topped several grand individually, and with the number of people involved tonight I wouldn't be surprised if the family made back a few million dollars. Compound that by the probability that they held out a similar arrangement for all of the other grieving events, the cost of holding said events would be a mere drop of the profit made.

This was beyond sickening. Aside from having a chance to network, the Hargroves were cashing in massively. I angrily realized that had they the chance to choose between having Annette alive or making hundreds of new influential friends and millions in revenue, the choice would be difficult. This society I took part in was even more heartless than I gave it credit for. We lived in a place that would take advantage of death.

Feeling a righteous surge of compulsion to protect Annette's memory from being so deeply insulted, I was momentarily distracted at last from scheming about Kathryn.

I always thought I'd pull some incredibly magnificent disaster to punish the headmaster for my senior year but after Annette, I was going to leave her father alone. Now, I was so pissed I wanted to have some instant revenge. It is too bad that I have too much self respect to sink to something as beneath me as egging the house.

Even though the act was horribly morbid, I fell into the trap that everyone else had and picked up the nearby pen to give in my own contributions. I offered up a large sum and wrote neatly underneath that I hoped the family would enjoy the money as much as they would have raising Annette's grandchildren, giving my most sincerest wish that the money would warm them once the devil came to claim the souls they had just finished selling.

Flipping through the other pages of the ledger, I tried to find Kathryn's handwriting and failed. She didn't indulge the family as I thought she might have. Suppose she hated Annette with such a vigor that even the irony of paying for her death wasn't succulent enough for her.

Smiling genuinely at the thought, I speculated on how much it did upset Kathryn that I cared for Annette. She had no reason to despise her so deeply if she was just annoyed by Annette as a person. She really was entirely jealous that another woman made me as reactive as I was.

Ha.

Oh, fuck, I'm doing it again. Funny how thinking of Annette brings back my conscience and thinking of Kathryn makes me a jack ass again.

I stared at the portrait. How ashamed would Annette have been of her parents?

I brushed my fingers against the picture of her face and released a breath. My throat closed up and once again I felt human. She offered me the opportunity to be a better person, to feel normally, to be different from who I am. God, I think I really did love her.

"Stop the sad boyfriend act. People have been exposed to wittle sensitive Sebastian for long enough. Keep it up and instead of garnering sympathy fucks, you'll be labeled as a pussy by the guys and as untouchable by the girls." Kathryn interrupted my moment.

"It isn't an act." My voice sounded raspy and I refused to look at my sister, unwilling to face the mockery that I knew would be prevalent.

"This is me. You really think I'm going to believe that?"

"As hard as it is to comprehend, I truly did care for her. More than you can grasp, I loved her. She was an innocent causality in a war I should have been mature enough to walk away from."

"Oh, please. You've inflicted damage on more 'innocent causalities' than I have."

"We hadn't killed any of them. I hadn't felt anything for any of them."

"One minute you're talking about fucking me, the next you're whining about your deep love for her? If you're going to pretend to feel a certain way, at least be consistent. My intelligence is beginning to feel insulted."

I smiled at her. "Let me spell it out for you, then. Fucking you makes me temporarily stop thinking, which makes me stop with the guilt tripping. Fucking you doesn't mean I care more about you, or less about her. You of all people should realize that fucking doesn't mean there's any real emotion involved. But really, you are very tasty in that dress. It's too bad you won't ever be more beautiful to me than she was. I don't think anyone will be." Eyeing her critically before allowing a pitying smile to grace my features, I turned away.

She bristled as I knew she would.

"You are so pathetic. Making up this fabrication when we both know you were only with her because of me. Everything you do is based around me and I find it hopelessly sad."

Looking over my shoulder, I tiredly said, "I find it hopelessly sad that no matter how you act as though I'm the one who's trailing you like a whipped love-sick dog, you're the one who's always begging for my attention. It is quite tragic that I'm the one thing you can't have when you so clearly need me to need you. But you're not her. I'm sorry."

"You're sorry?" Kathryn snorted out obnoxiously.

"Yes. I'm sorry I can't pretend to care more for you. I don't mean to be hurtful, you know. I'm merely being honest."

"I'm not Annette. And thank God for that. If you're seriously standing here telling me that you'd only be interested in me if I were like her-"

"That's not what I'm saying. A cheap imitation would do nothing for me. Listen. Weren't you the one who was so ready to discard me to begin with? Why don't you go find someone nice to fuck around with? I'm sure you're capable. In the meantime, I'd like to have a moment to myself if you wouldn't mind. I don't know how I'm ever going to properly say goodbye."

"Screwing me is as good of way as any, it seems." She spat out.

"Like I said, it helps me forget. And I really did need to forget earlier. So thank you for being a distraction."

Oh, Kathryn was getting rather infuriated. She glared at me and had to swallow to prevent herself from saying something she'd regret. How dare I call her a distraction? How could I possibly refer to our first sexual encounter ever as a means to simply lessen the pain I felt for my real love? This was more comforting to me than I could have imagined. I suppose revenge does have some healing qualities.

"I can understand why you're upset. I certainly would be if I were someone's second choice." To properly wrap up the beauty of the moment, I leaned in and gave Kathryn a condescending hug. "Hope we can still be friends."

With a large grin on my face, I walked confidently away from her before she could rip out my eyes.

A few minutes later, they were doing this long droning speech about Annette that actually managed to be much more about the school and the responsiblities involved in running such a school than it was about her. In any case, I spotted Kathryn sitting close by with her arms crossed and still sulking over my words. I quickly adjusted my view to a spot over her head as she looked back at me. Restraining the formation of another glowing grin from betraying my mood, I stood up and made my way discreetly to the corridor outside the washrooms.

Predictably, she followed.

"You can't just walk away from making those comments and expect me not to follow up." She flatly stated as she grabbed my arm. "And if you're so busy missing your fucking bimbo why are you such an ass as to leave part way through the speech?"

"That speech has little to do with her." I shrugged. "And come now, isn't it your life's injustice that you can't be honest without having people condemn you? And now you condemn me for saying the truth. The hypocrisy mustn't go unnoticed by you."

"That isn't the truth."

Abruptly taking a step closer to her, I boxed Kathryn in between me and the wall. Leaning over her, my lips curved upwards in amusement and I asked, "Well, then. What is the truth?"

"You want me and it drives you off the wall knowing I don't want you in the slightest."

"Hmm." I inched even closer to her so that we were a breath away from touching. "You don't want me in the slightest." My lips were agonizingly close to brushing against hers and I knew this would affect her.

"No." She answered stubbornly.

My hands shifted from her waist to just beside her breasts and over her ass, respectively. "No?"

"Your hands aren't placed in very decent areas, dear brother."

The hand that was over her ass smoothly glided down her leg and I allowed my fingers to graze the skin underneath her skirt. By the bareness of skin I felt, I quickly came to the conclusion that the dirty whore was wearing either a barely-there thong or no panties at all.

"Would you like me to move them?"

"They're making me rather uncomfortable. What would mother say?"

"Mmm. What would she have said if she could have seen us earlier today?"

"You're being very bad, Sebastian. Annette's barely cold-"

"Like I said. You're a distraction."

Despite herself, her eyes closed and her mouth gaped open as my fingers pressed possessively over the beginnings of her ass.

Taking advantage of this, I slipped my tongue in said mouth and flicked it lightly against hers before retracting it as suddenly as it entered. I captured her bottom lip with my teeth and bit down playfully, pulling it out.

Her hands found themselves against my chest for support and her eyes remained shut.

With a smirk, I released her from my hold, took two steps back, and watched as she stumbled.

"No. I guess you really don't want me."

The rest of the speech seemed so much more tolerable after that.

xXx

The night was slowly winding down and it wouldn't be long before one could leave without looking disrespectful. I had just finished speaking with some random person who recognized me from the school assembly and who hoped to offer their sympathies. I wonder if anyone actually appreciates this. Hi, I don't know you, but I'm so sorry that person you loved died. Even though I didn't know the deceased either. But either way, you're hot and you talk real good!

I was still shall we say, sore, from that afternoon (I can honestly say I've rarely, rarely taken that many rounds together in such a short time frame), but I was still looking to get off that night. I wasn't completely lying when I said sex made me forget about Annette. The inability to think and feel guilt was a nice prospect. There were other ways, obviously, but I didn't trust myself to take drugs without ODing. My threshold had expanded substantially and I didn't want to end up blacking out again.

I was soon in the middle of effectively hitting on a sultry-though-mildly-slutty redhead; she was touching me frequently and looking at me in a way that had me knowing I'd be undressed before long. She would be a screamer, I could tell. Anyways, she was just leaning against my ear to whisper something naughty to me when we were interrupted by a 'Sebastian?'

Smiling apologetically at the redhead, I turned to see Kathryn. "Yes?" I asked tersely.

She smiled sweetly. "Could I speak with you?"

"In the middle of something." I rolled my eyes. The redhead was looking a little suspicious of this other woman, so I quickly added, "This is my sister."

"Can't it wait?" Kathryn pouted.

I was going to tell her to screw off but the redhead, much relieved to hear of our familial connection, told me it was okay and she would still be here.

Lighting up victoriously, Kathryn walked with me to a quietly enclosed section.

"I was trying to get laid. Don't you know better than to bother me when I'm doing that?" I chided her as I might a child.

"I just wanted to tell you that my wanting you physically means nothing."

"Right. Dually noted. Now excuse me, that redhead looks like she knows what she's doing and I've got a craving for a blow job-"

Blinking up at me thoughtfully for a moment, Kathryn snatched my arm to stop me from walking away and yanked me closer to her as she crashed her mouth over mine. Shoving one hand into my curls and the other holding my jaw in place, she snaked her tongue in my mouth and kissed me heavily.

When she finally released me, I laughed, "Jealous of little red?"

"Wanting you physically means nothing." She repeated and took off my suit jacket. Kissing my jaw and stroking my arms, she added, "Unless you think little red will satisfy you more than I will?"

"I like you when you're so obliging." I said, unzippering the back of her dress. "Ready now to be treated like a common whore?"

"Like you're ready to be on board for a booty call even when you're trying to sleep with another woman? I'd say I wasn't the only one not being truthful about their lust."

"I never said I didn't want you physically. I've openly admitted it." I replied as she fingered with my tie.

"It means nothing."

"Of course." I unbuttoned my shirt and she tore it from my arms, shoving me against the wall. My belt was soon off and my pants pulled down.

"You said you felt like a blow?"

"I thought you had more pride than this. You could just say you're horny for me." I smirked.

She began to stand up tempermentally but I gently held her down. "Kidding." I rectified.

As I felt her mouth, I managed to retain thought for just long enough to moan out, "Annette." I was such an evil bastard. How does that suit you now, bitch?

Scandalized, she moved back. "What the FUCK?"

"I told you that you were a distraction."

"Someone really doesn't want action." She snapped and turned away from me. "Now zip me back up."

"Oh, come on. Don't be like that." I sighed, rubbing her shoulders. "Don't be mad. It was an honest mistake."

"You are such a fuckwit. Now zip me the fuck up!"

"I promise I won't do it again."

My hand touched her back and instead of zipping her up, I made to push the dress down.

"I said no."

"Come on. Kathryn…" I wheedled. "Look, I'm so hard for you- you can't just walk away."

"I can do whatever I want, you miserable piece of shit!"

"A little role-play never hurt anyone." I added in.

She slapped me.

"Okay. I may have deserved that." I smirked. "I'll let you call me Court."

That cracked a smile through her fury.

"And I swear I won't fall asleep."

"Why do I tolerate you?"

I smoothed over her hair and kissed her neck continually, coaxingly. "Because I'm the sex?"

"If all the men here weren't old, ugly, or faggots I wouldn't be here with you, you know."

"Mmmhmm."

"I'm just horny. It doesn't mean anything."

She closed her eyes again and didn't protest when I moved her dress down this time. "Now, about that blow…"

"It's all about you, isn't it?" Kathryn snorted.

"I promise to cuddle after, if you want." I mocked.

"I can think of better things for you to do." She answered darkly and slid to her knees.

"Anything for my sister."

With a laugh, she continued what she started.

Oblivion was just reaching me when a horrified yelp brought me back to my senses and Kathryn back on her feet.

Mrs. Hargrove stared at us in frozen amazement.

"Sebastian?" She gasped.

Oops.

As we both muttered haste apologies and scuttled away, despite ourselves Kathryn and I released bursts of laughter.

"That was fucking brilliant." Kathryn shook her head. "You know, you're once again the devil. Just killed any respect they all had for you."

"Worth it." I answered. "Never did like her family, anyways."

Meeting my eyes again, we collapsed in another explosion of laughter.

For a moment, it felt like us again.

For a moment, the war wasn't between me and her and I could almost forget that I wanted to wholly hurt her and forgive the pain she dealt out to me. Almost.

For a moment, there was no winner and this was not a competition.

The laughter brought about a care-free quality I didn't get to see in Kathryn very much; but then neither did I laugh often.

"You do know that this will be everywhere unless we blackmail Hargrove immediately? And how would that look, us being brother and sister and you supposedly heartbroken?"

"Entirely inappropriate. Stupid of us to do that there, you know."

"Thought it'd be fun to screw your brains out in your dead girlfriend's house." This comment would be filed away in the list of the many offences Kathryn had against me but for now, the filing away would be retribution enough.

"Bitch."

"Man whore." Kathryn cheerfully responded. After a pause, she lightly added, "…Fuck! I left my shoe!"

"You must have really been burning up to feel me in you to lose your head so utterly." I noted, truly surprised she had been so careless.

"Can you believe that? One shoe, just sitting there. One shoe and one scarred old lady who is going to be fantasizing about your dick now."

Identical chortles shook us both again. God, this was ridiculous. But damn, it was still fucking funny.

As I watched her laugh, I felt a tug at how sincerely sincere Kathryn was at this moment. She was so geniune, it was actually sweet. It was human. I wished I could appreciate this for what it was. I almost wished I had the capacity to forget my obsession with crushing her and forgive the ways she injured me. Almost.

She scorned me too deeply this time and there could be no mending. I almost wished I could be more idealistic. That was my last mistake. I had let my guard down, she took advantage. I wasn't mentally impaired enough to do the same idiotic thing twice. This would be a grudge I wouldn't stop clinging to and a conviction I'd stick with until the end. I'd win. Even if I no longer wanted the fucking victory, I would win.

Kathryn brushed her hand against my arm in a natural, off hand display of closeness that she didn't even recognize she was doing. I was temporarily quelled and felt an overshadowing of sadness. There was so much we could have had. She was Kathryn; my Kathryn. There was so much we could have had; why did she have to drive me to this?

I reminded myself that she had never loved me, had never cared for me as I cared for her. I hated that everything was an act and that I could never be certain of her intentions. I couldn't trust her. And if I couldn't trust her, she'd be damned stupid to trust me. I couldn't buy into her manipulation. She told me herself every show of emotion was part of her little well thought out game.

So laugh it up, bitch. Soon you will be crying.

And honey, so will I.

I kissed her cheek softly and she cocked her head. "What was that for?"

"For being my whore of a sister."

She laughed again and I wondered if maybe she was high. She never laughed and now this was three times in five minutes.

She's just a lying bitch, she's just a lying bitch, she's just a lying bitch...

And then that voice came again. 'What if she's not just that?' 'What if it's different this time?'

It wasn't love.

She didn't love me.

Kathryn was incapable of love.

My chest constricted. Maybe I was just incapable of being loved.

Way to be a mother fucking pussy, Sebastian.

She was looking at me. Not with gloating amusement or curiosity, not with suspicion. She was merely looking. I wish I could allow myself the luxury and comfort of believing she did care. I wish, I wish, I wish.

The bitch is going down.

"Come on, let's go get your shoe, shall we?"