PROLOGUE

TRISTAN

One Month Ago . . .

My body feels as if it were on fire . . . burning from the inside out. My veins are boiling with whatever they’ve injected in my body. Every day, hour upon hour, I wish for only one thing . . . death. Unfortunately, the wish goes unanswered each and every time.

The night I was ambushed, my car ran off the side of the road, my hell began. It’s unlike anything else I’ve ever endured in my life. Growing up one of the sons of Delano DeLancy that’s saying something.

Being the third son to Delano meant I wasn’t exactly what he wanted. He continued to knock my mother up because it was a way of keeping her with him. I want to think he truly loved her, but then again, a man doesn’t allow his sister to kill said woman while her children are in the house. If I remember correctly my oldest sister was in the room with her, hidden under the bed. We’d all been playing a game of hide and seek.

Things changed even more after that day. Delano went from being the strict father to a deviant man who was only out for one thing—power. To him power and money is what made a man. He tried to force those beliefs on my brothers and me. Guess we had more of our mother inside us than we did of him. None of us turned out like the old man. Hell, Félix, my oldest brother, is the one to insure Delano’s death.

If only we knew the cards that would start falling at his demise. First, Olivia, our baby sister, ended up marrying Finn Brisbane out of contract to keep us from having to deal with a war between families. It’s a good thing I like Finn, otherwise, I would have killed him myself, but the man loves my sister. You can see he cherishes her. Second there’s my twin sister . . . I now understand the hell she went through . . . it’s the same as mine. But I think mine might be even worse than hers.

The creaking of a door opening pulls me from my thoughts, and I stiffen in anticipation.

“I see you awake and alert this time,” Dimitri, my tormentor, snickers. “You’re not as much fun to play with like your sister was when you are out of it.”

I clench my teeth in anger wishing I could fight the asshole, but unfortunately, I’m not able to. Dimitri made sure of that weeks ago, by breaking bones and leaving me nearly dead.

“Your siblings held the funeral for you today,” he announces gleefully. “If only they knew the truth.” The way he snickers it grates on my nerves.

I want to tell him to go to hell, but it’ll only make things worse. Any time I’ve done anything but scream has bought me more pain.

“Your sweet, sweet twin sister looked beautiful as always. It’s a shame they got her back, but regardless . . . none of them knew I was there, and it was hilarious to see them mourn for you.”

Dimitri moves around the room more further and grabs one of his favorite things I’ve learned he likes to use. With the tool in his hands, he focuses directly on me and closes the distances.

When he’s standing directly next to me, he grips the top of my head and smirks. “Don’t worry, though, they don’t need to know you’re alive for me to hurt them. I’ll torture you, fuck you, do whatever they hell I want. They’ll feel the pain in other ways, and I’ll ensure you die hating them all in the end.”

I swallow back the bile that’s constantly threatening to come up. The last thing I need is for him to choke on the acid that burns my insides.

Dimitri releases my hair and steps away moving for the chain running up a beam that's connected to the trolley dangling from the ceiling over me. The other part of the chain is shackled around my wrists.

He yanks on the end, and I brace myself for what’s about to happen.

More pain. More torment. More of him demeaning me.

I more than anyone else know what my sisters have been through as Dimitri enjoys doing the same to me.

If only death would come and let me finally have peace where there is none left for me in this life.

* * *

The clanking of the chains moving is my only sign of movement. I can’t feel anything else from the pain filling my entire being. My body hits the floor once more and I groan. I’m not sure if it’s from relief or sheer agony from what I endured yet again.

Dimitri cackles, satisfied with the pain he’s dished out as he leaves the room without saying a word. He never does after he’s finished.

Disgusted with myself, I curl into a ball, hating myself.

I wish I could leave this hellhole and go back to my life, but I know that will never happen. If I ever were to get away from this place, I could never go back. Not to what once was. I’m no longer the same man I was. After all Dimitri’s done to demean me, I never will be again.


Tags: E.C. Land Crime
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