Fallen Crest Public

Page 42

“Don’t say anything or make it obvious, but look to see if there’s a camcorder stashed somewhere.”

“Wait,” Logan shook his head. “You think she’s in on it? We do things or we have done things in the living room. They could’ve put it there—”

“They were going there tonight.”

“Oh.” His shoulders dropped. “So what do you want me to do? You want me to grab it?”

When Mason didn’t reply, Logan looked to me. I shrugged. “Mason’s the mastermind. Not me.”


“I don’t know. Maybe leave it in place?”

“I’m not going over there anymore. No f**king way, not if they have a camcorder in there. That’s messed up.”

“I know. I’m not saying that,” Mason bit out. “But if we move the camcorder, then they’d have to change tactics again. We know what they’re planning right now. Maybe we can wait to see what else she’s planning?”

“Should I tell Tate?”

Mason didn’t respond.

“Mase, that’s not right.”

“No,” he sighed. “I know. Yeah, tell her, but she needs to act like she doesn’t know it’s there. We’ll figure out the next step later.”

“What about her parents?” I asked. “Should they know? They might talk about things that are personal.”

Logan shook his head. “Nah. She’s not here with them. Her dad lost his job so they shipped her out here to live with her older sister, but she’s gone on a modeling trip. Tate said she wouldn’t be back for a week or so.” Then he jerked his head in a nod and started for the door. “Oh wait,” he braked and gestured to me. “Did you tell her about the mannequins?”

“Not yet.”


“Yeah.” He flashed me a smile as he headed out the door. “We torched ‘em, all of ‘em. Natalie’s aunt’s going to get a nice little surprise when she goes to work in the morning. On that note, I’m out.” The door shut behind him, but we could hear him whistling as he went down the hall.

“You burned them?”

He nodded.

“All of them?”

He narrowed his eyes, and I got a glimpse of the cruel Mason again. “Every single one of them.”

“Was that safe?”

He shrugged, turning to me with a hand on my leg. He nudged it over and stepped between them as he looked down at me. “We were safe. We took all of them to a place where it’d be okay.”

“And Natalie’s aunt? She won’t press charges?”

“We left a note with a few images I kept from when they messed with Marissa. We let her know she could thank her niece for all of it.”

I held my breath. It’d been so long since he’d mentioned Marissa, and now that he had, I wanted to ask him more about her. I wanted to understand what had happened to her, but I sensed his unease. It was like approaching a wild animal. I had to go slow and with caution. My heart started to pound again as I took that first step. My hand raised to touch his arm. The muscles were corded tightly in a bunch. He was so tense, but I had to try. “You still had those pictures?”

His arm began to tremble underneath my touch, just a tiny bit, but it was enough to take my breath away. His voice was rough when he spoke, “Did you know they did the same to her?”

The lump was back in my throat. It was big and wobbly, but I nodded. “Yes.”

“Heather told you?”

“Yes.” My heart was racing so fast now. He was finally talking about her. I felt the wall coming down. I needed to know so much. She was important to him. I needed to understand. “Will you tell me about her?”

“I thought I had?”

“More. You didn’t say much before. She transferred because of Kate and her friends?”

He let out a deep sigh and moved away. I ached, I still needed his touch, but then he surprised me. He came back, a conflicted look on his face, and lifted me from the couch. I was curled against his chest as he sat down on the couch, with me on his lap. Then he tucked his chin over my head and began to talk about her.

“It was Tate, too,” he paused for a moment, “towards the end of her relationship with Logan, and before she tried to sleep with me, when Heather had stopped being friends with her. I didn’t pay attention. I didn’t care about your friend back then, but I remember Logan saying something about it to me. He seemed to care, but then I started noticing that Tate was becoming friendly with Kate and the girls. Made sense. Tate was always around Logan and the girls were always around us. The guys considered them friends, you know?”

“Where’d your friendship with Marissa come in?”

His arms tightened around me, securing me in place. “That was a fluke thing. We sat next to each other in a class and got paired up for a project. My parents were going through a divorce at the time. My dad had been cheating for so many years, and I watched my mom go through that shit storm, then your mom started popping up. Anyways, I had a pretty low opinion of the female gender from Tate and other girls. I didn’t even like Kate and the rest of them. Kate must’ve thought she was my maybe-girlfriend, I don’t know what she thought, but I didn’t care. I used her so I can kind of see where she got it wrong, but I didn’t trust her or any of the others. They were mean.”

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