Broken Queen

Page 61

We drive for over an hour and all the while I’m thinking, trying to make sense of what’s happened. What is happening. Did Amadeo and Bastian arrive at the house? Did they find Emma? I have to believe they have and that she’s safe.
I keep glancing at Lucien who must be having a conversation via text as I try to figure this out. I put my hand into my pocket and confirm the photo is there. It’s real. Why did he lie about not seeing them?
“Why did you come to Italy?” I ask.
He looks at me. “You give me a hard time when I don’t send men after you and then you give me a hard time when I come myself to save your ass.” He shifts his attention back to his phone and resumes his furious texting.
I watch out the window, not recognizing anything on roads that seem too far from civilization. It’s dark when the driver steers the car onto a narrow, single-lane dirt road, and I watch as we approach what must have once been an old factory. Three large SUVs with windows tinted black are parked outside, and none of this looks good.
“Where are we?” I ask as our car comes to a stop behind the three already there.
Lucien looks straight at me. “Time for you to pull your weight, sis.”
He climbs out and holds the door open, waiting for me to follow him. I look at the building. It’s dark but for a light coming from a room at the far end of the row of windows.
“What is this?” I ask, remaining in the car.
He reaches in and grabs my arm to drag me out.
“This is you doing your part for once in your fucking life,” he says. I tug to get free, but he slams me backward against the car so hard it knocks the wind out of my lungs. “Did he tell you he changed the will?”
“Did he fucking tell you? Were you laughing at me behind my back all along?”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. Let me go.”
“Did you know all along like that conniving lawyer of his?”
“No. I didn’t know anything. Let me go, Lucien.”
“I could have let you die, you know that?” he says through his teeth. “I didn’t. It was up to me, and I saved your life, and he punished me for it. Everything for his fucking princesses. Always for you and your goddamn mother. Even when he knew what a whore she was.”
Those photos come to mind, and he must see that I know something because he grins an ugly grin.
“You know Dad divorced my mother when Leah conveniently got pregnant with you.”
Before I can think of an answer, he continues.
“He should have known then once a cheater always a cheater,” he says. “She knew I knew,” he adds, self-satisfied.
“Knew what?”
The look in his eyes is so strange. Not flat, like it usually is, but an inky black. An unhinged darkness.
“I showed her the pictures. Her spreading her legs for that pig.” He grins, gaze moving over me in a way that makes my skin crawl.
“What?” And then I get it. “What did you do?”
“I gave her an out, and like the whore she is, she took it.” His eyes go out of focus. It’s like he’s looking right through me and that grin trembles, then vanishes, and rage takes over. “She shouldn’t have laughed at me. That’s what cost her in the end.” His lip curls, and he blinks several times before he focuses on me. “You look like her, a fucking carbon copy.”
I look over his shoulder at the deserted road. “Let me go, Lucien.” I stare up at him, unsure how to react, what to say or do. A door clangs and we both turn to find a big guy with shoulders as wide as the doorframe step outside. He has a Glock tucked into his belt. He comes toward us.
I try to wriggle free. Though what am I going to do if I manage to get away from Lucien? Where am I going to run to? And how am I going to get away from the hulk.