I roll my window down as soon as we pull up outside Dino’s. His front door opens and he steps out onto the porch. Dino is about three hundred pounds, six seven, with a bald head. As soon as he realizes who it is, he swings his shotgun up to rest on his shoulder.
“Haven’t seen you in a while,” he says, looking at the occupants of the car.
“It’s been a while,” I confirm.
Dino has a house in the desert on two hundred acres. About fifteen years ago, he had bomb shelters built into the ground around his property. These shelters are soundproof and safely enclosed, the perfect place to kill someone and take your time doing it.
“I need a room tonight,” I say, getting out of the SUV and walking over to the porch.
“Sure thing.” He greets me with a handshake and waves for Pika to follow him. “I’ll lead you guy out,” he mutters, getting onto a four-wheeler while I walk back over to the SUV and climb into the front seat.
“This place is fucking creepy,” Aye mutters as we drive through the desert.
Every once in a while, we drive past a part of the sand that has a red light sticking up out of the ground, the light signifying that the room is occupied. There is only one reason to come here.
After driving for about thirty minutes, we come to a stop, and Dino gets off his four-wheeler, and I meet him at the door of the shelter.
“You know the rules. You’re locked in until you call. There are clothes and supplies inside, and make sure you leave your keys in the car so I can have someone come out and pick it up.”
“Got it,” I mutter.
He opens the door and the smell of cleaning supplies hits my nose. I inhale one last breath of clean air before walking into the room behind Pika and Aye, who are carrying Thad.
“Call when you’re done,” Dino says, shutting the door and locking it behind us.
For the next six hours, I tortured him until he couldn’t even hold his head up on his own. Then I cut off his dick and shoved it down his throat like I’d told him I would.
Call me evil, but when I walked away from his lifeless body, I felt cleaner.
There was one last piece of shit in the world preying on the innocent.
When we arrived home, I went to our room and got into the shower before getting into bed with Myla. The moment I lay down, her body curved against mine and she looked up at me with tears in her eyes.
“It’s done,” I tell her.
Her beautiful eyes close open, and she leans forward, pressing a kiss to my chest. I gather her closer to me, and with her wrapped in my arms and my hand on her belly, I feel my son move for the first time.
“He moved,” I whisper in awe, waiting to see if I can feel him again.
“He’s been doing it all night. It’s almost like he’s trying to tell me that it will all be okay,” she whispers.
I exhale a long breath. “You have nothing to fear now, makamae,” I tell her.
She nods her head against my chest, and I wait, listening as her breathing evens out before following her off to sleep.
We’ve been home from Vegas for three weeks, and I know it may make me a horrible person, but knowing that Thad is dead and can never hurt me or anyone else again makes me feel lighter. I still felt bad for my parents when they called to tell me that he had gone missing. I know they were heartbroken over the loss of their son. I wanted to tell them the kind of monster he was, to make them understand they shouldn’t morn his loss, but I know that, in the end, it didn’t matter. He had paid with his life for his crimes. I even got up enough courage to speak to my brother Royce, and even though the conversation was awkward, it felt good to talk to him.
My relationship with Kai has also changed since coming back to Hawaii. The wall that had been keeping us separated finally crumbled. He now knew everything there was to know about me, and I now know he will be there to help me battle any demons I may have.
I silently lie here, looking out at the ocean, willing myself to sleep, but I can’t get over the feeling that something is going to happen. I know that something is brewing. I don’t know what it is, but the energy over the last few days has changed, and Kai is more anxious than before. But every time I bring it up, he explains that, when the time is right, he will share it with me.
“I need to go out for a couple of hours, love,” Kai says, coming into the room, where I have been lying down, trying to take a nap.
I turn my head on the pillow and take him in, noticing that he looks worried. “Do you want me to come with you?” I ask him.
He shakes his head, leans over me, and presses a kiss to my lips. When he pulls back, his fingers run down my cheek.
“I won’t be gone long,” he says, but the anxiety I see in his eyes has the worry in my chest expanding.
“Is everything okay?”
“Everything’s fine. You just rest.”
I study his face and take notice of the way his jaw seems to be harder. “I love you,” I tell him as I lift my hand to run my fingers down his jaw.
His eyes go soft and his face changes slightly. “I love you too. I’ll be back,” he tells me, and this time, I hear the conviction in his voice when the words leave his mouth.
“We’ll be here waiting for you,” I tell him instead of doing what I really want to do, which is attach myself to him, making it hard for him to leave without taking me with him.
His lips press against mine as his hand moves to my belly one last time before he leaves the room. It takes all of my strength to stay on the bed and not follow him out of the house.
Soon after he leaves, I get up and phone his mom to see if she knows anything about what’s going on. She tells me that Kai didn’t tell her anything and she is sure it is just the hormones that are making me feel like something is off. When I get off the phone with her, I go into the kitchen and start baking to help keep my mind busy until he comes home.
I look at the clock and then over at Pika, who has been hanging out with me since I got out of bed earlier. When I notice that he’s looking at the clock as well, I give up and go get the phone. I have never called Kai when he has told me that he’ll be working, but right now, I need to make sure he’s okay so the feeling in my stomach will hopefully go away.
I wrap one arm around my waist and then use the other to dial his number before putting the phone to my ear. My eyes stay locked on Pika’s, and I can see that he’s waiting to get some relief as well.
My heart soars then crashes to the ground when I realize it’s only the message for his voicemail. “Hey, I…I just wanted to make sure you are okay.” I pause and let out a shaky breath as my head drops forward and tears fill my eyes. “Please come home,” I whisper and then hang up. “He didn’t answer,” I tell Pika, placing the phone on the counter.