I leaned against the wall, crossing my arms stubbornly. The jail was dingy, with flickering lights and less-than-impressive facilities. The paint was peeling, the floor was covered in scuff marks. There was a suspicious-looking reddish stain a few meters down the hall.
It also happened to be the place Vanessa was being held.
Rian glared at me from the wall opposite mine, flanked by a scowling Rokim and an unenthusiastic Lisa. I glared right back, standing firm against them all.
Rokim breached the silence first.
"Come on, Hanna," he urged, glancing at the door the police officer had disappeared through, on his way to collect Vanessa for her visitors. "This is a bad idea. We promised to keep you out of trouble."
I met his gaze with a scowl of my own. "She's being detained, Kimmy. With a bunch of cops. I couldn't get into trouble even if I tried."
"It doesn't matter," I interrupted sharply. "I'm doing this. Either get on board, or go home."
He closed his mouth, his scowl fiercer than ever. I felt a little bad about snapping at him, but I couldn't let anyone dissuade me. I wanted to talk to her.
"She tried to kill you, Hanna," Rian murmured quietly.
I glanced at him, my expression softening. I hadn't forgotten how angry he'd been at the hospital when I'd first woken up, or the blatant worry when I'd nearly broken down. He had every right not to like this.
Still didn't mean he could stop me.
I shifted forward, taking his hand. "I'll be fine," I reassured him, giving his fingers a squeeze. "She won't be able to touch me. There's gonna be a guard right outside the door."
His brows drew together unhappily. "I just don't get why it's so important that you see her."
I paused, considering my motivations. I remembered the moment I'd set the ropes tying me down on fire. No matter how I tried, I just couldn't shake the memory of how horrified she'd looked when the flames had actually caught. It bothered me immensely. Even worse, it gave me pause, when all I wanted to do was condemn her and forget the whole thing.
Surely there was something that made her do what she did. Something more than petty jealousy. I had to know.
I did my best to give Rian a comforting smile. "I have a few things I want to ask her," I said carefully, giving his hand another squeeze. "I'll be out in no time."
I stepped away as the door to our right swung open, and a guard gestured for me to head inside. "Only one visitor at a time," he said gruffly, when he saw Rian try to step in after me.
I glanced back at all of them, swallowing against the lump in my throat. There was no reason for me to be nervous.
"When I come back, we'll go get ice cream, yeah?"
Rian huffed and crossed his arms, but Rokim and Lisa nodded tensely. I sent them all a winning smile and stepped inside the waiting room. The door clicked shut behind me.
This area was even dirtier than the rest of the jail, and was just meant to separate the outside area from the interior. I was facing a wall with a large window to my left, through which I could see the guard from before. Another door stood directly in front of me, locked electronically. There was an intercom and a few buttons on a panel below him, from what little I could see, but the rest extended out of my field of vision.
The guard's voice drifted through the intercom, sharp and sudden.
"Visitor to see Vanessa Hawthorne. One moment, please."
YOU ARE READING
He brushed his lips against my jaw, his dark hair falling over his brow. "Open your eyes," he commanded. "Look at me." I followed his orders and looked into the raven-black depths before me. I saw my entranced gaze reflected in his glaring one. "Tel...