Chapter Twenty-Four

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Alexander (Greed)

Somebody stole my favorite ring. A solid piece of iron hammered into a circular shape, it's fairly nondescript. No engravings or precious stones inlaid in the metal, but it's one of my most valued possessions simply because of what it represents. My first major theft.

When I was a young boy, Hell was visited by a group of fae royals. Fae don't normally travel outside of their realm, so something major must have occurred for members of the royal family to come all the way to Hell. Regardless of their reasons, I saw an opportunity and I took advantage of it.

Fae creatures of any type have an aversion to iron. The weaker they are, the stronger that aversion is. So, powerful fae like to show off their prowess by wearing iron jewelry, proving that they're strong enough to withstand being poisoned.

One of the princes had an iron ring on his thumb that he would fiddle with while we all sat to a grand dinner in the Great Hall of Shame. It mesmerized me. There was nothing in all the realms I wanted more than that ring. So I filched it. Slipped it from his finger while he was preoccupied with a glass of faerie wine and he was none the wiser.

I stole from a fae prince, and now someone has stolen from me. Two guesses as to who.

Romeo or Elizabeth. The only people who know what that ring means to me and who have enough fucking gall to take it from me. Romeo would do it as a joke, Elizabeth would do it if she felt I slighted her in some way. Wrath hates me enough to fuck with me, but he prefers to use his fists instead.

My fingers briefly shake with phantom pain. After I choked Willow out for attacking Gwen, Ragnar broke every bone in my hand. He was so thorough that it took my body several hours to fully heal. I've avoided the mortal ever since, so I doubt he'd be the one to take the ring, anyway. Elizabeth's out for the same reason.

That leaves Romeo. My youngest brother, the fuckhead to end all fuckheads.

I can't teleport directly into his room, so it takes me a few minutes to get to his door. I pick the lock rather than wait for him to open it, and enter his living room.

It appears as though I've stumbled upon some family reunion. Aristotle is splayed across the only couch in the room, Wrath is leaning against the wall and looking out the window, and Romeo is pacing back and forth on the small strip of empty space. When I enter, all three stop speaking and turn to me.

Romeo recovers first. "You know, locks were invented for a reason. To keep riffraff like you out."

I don't have time for his bullshit today. Or any day, ever.

"Shut the fuck up and give me my ring back," I order.

Aristotle straightens from his lounged position, but Ragnar flicks the curtains aside and goes back to staring out the window.

Romeo pouts. "Whatever do you mean, dear brother? I wouldn't dream of stealing from you."

In three stalking steps, I'm standing toe-to-toe with him. "Cut the crap, dick-for-brains. I want my ring."

He pushes against my chest, but I hold my ground. "It's good to want things, brother. I want burnt pizza, television, and a day with my favorite girl without feeling like she's fading into nothing."

His voice falters on the last part, but he grits his teeth and carries on. "But, we don't always get what we want, do we?"

His favorite girl? Everything, every damn thing, comes back to Willow with these three. They're all pathetic.

"If you don't give me my ring back, I will reciprocate in kind. We both know who the better thief is."

He smirks at me like a fool. "Is that a threat?"

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