The walk back to the Swag Pags' house went by a lot slower than the run to the store, but not nearly as slow as I needed it to be. As guilty as I felt for trying to steal from Chuck, it was being dwarfed by the thought of what D.K.'s reaction would be when I came back empty handed. My gut felt heavy, but I couldn't have stopped myself going back if I'd tried. I had my alpha's direct order to return to the house as soon as my business in town was finished.
Besides, they still had Kimberly.
The door squeaked on its hinges as I stepped inside, but I'm sure they couldn't have heard it over the ever-present rap music blasting from the living room. Still, I crept in as quietly as I could, trying not to attract any attention before I absolutely had to.
“Girl," I heard Kaylie squeal from the other end of the hallway, “you look so adorable!"
I stopped in my tracks. If Kaylie was talking to a girl, it could only have been Kimberly. Suddenly, I felt sick again at the thought of what that skank had been doing with my little girl while I was gone.
I paused, blinking in surprise. My little girl? I shook my head to refocus myself, and then headed for where I'd heard her voice.
“The boys are going to love you!" she was saying as I opened the door her and D.K.'s bedroom. She was standing with her back to me, and I couldn't see what was in front of her.
“I didn't hear you knock, woman," D.K. said, startling me. I hadn't seen him sprawled out on the bed on the other side of the room.
“Sorry," I said sheepishly as he got up and came across the room. I cringed, sure he was going to hit me again, but then Kaylie turned around to glare at me and I finally saw Kimberly.
“Amber," she whimpered, sitting on a stool, tears dribbling down her face, smearing her mascara. That's right, mascara. Kaylie must have spent the entire time I was gone putting enough of it on her to make her look like Mr. Vaazkima. And not just mascara. Her entire face was covered in so much makeup that she looked ready for either the circus, or the street corner.
“What did you do to her?" I demanded, forgetting my place for a second.
“Excuse me?" Kaylie exclaimed, looking taken aback by my outburst. “It's called a makeover, stupid!"
I tried to think of something to say back to her, something scathing enough to cut her down to size, but words failed me. There simply was no way I could adequately describe how utterly pathetic she was, so instead I said, “Kimberly, come here."
At once, the little girl hopped up off the stool and ran to me, hiding from the two older wolves behind my legs.
Kaylie's eyes widened in anger. “I wasn't done with her, you…"
“Shut up!" D.K. roared, cutting her off and making me flinch. He turned to me. “Where's my money, woman?"
My breath caught in my throat. In all the shouting, I'd actually forgotten why I had come back here in the first place.
“I said where is my money!" D.K. shouted, his patience wearing thin.
“I- I didn't get it," I answered. Before he could say anything else, I explained the situation. “There was somebody else there already. They took the money. They were called the, um…" I paused, trying to remember what they had called themselves. “The- the G-Nomes!"
For the first time, I saw complete surprise on D.K.'s face. No anger, no pride, just shock. He stared at me for a good ten seconds, like he hadn't understood a word I'd just said. But then, just as I'd figured it would, the anger came back.
And then he hit me.
“The G-Nomes are on my turf?" he screamed, towering over me like a madman. “And you just let them take my money?"
“I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry," I said over and over again, curling into a ball to protect myself from any more blows. I heard Kimberly scream and run into the hallway. But D.K.'s attention no longer seemed to be on me. He was staring into space now, his hands still clenched by his sides, hyperventilating.
“Tyler!" he bellowed suddenly, but the massive man was already standing right outside the door. D.K. jabbed his finger at him. “We got to do something about this, ya hear? I ain't letting them gremlins take my territory."
Tyler's face was as impassive as always, but he nodded his agreement. D.K. wasn't done yet, though. He had worked himself into a rage, and he wasn't going to stop until he calmed down.
“I'll kill them!" he screamed, his eyes bugging out of his head. “I'll tear their stupid white heads off their necks before I let them take my territory!"
With D.K. looking at Tyler, I was able to look into his eyes for a couple of seconds. I sucked in a breath when I saw they had darkened to the rich golden color of a wolf's.
“Honey, boo," Kaylie wailed, flinging her arms around him again. “Don't lose your temper baby, please!"
She give him a big noisy kiss on his cheek, but D.K. only seemed to notice long enough to push her away.
“Kill them all," he muttered under his breath, finally going into the hallway with Tyler. “Kill them all!"
He slammed the door behind him, leaving me and Kaylie alone. I stayed where I was for a few seconds, curled up in a little ball, afraid that he would come back any second. It wasn't until I forced myself to relax, stretching my legs out in front of me and resting against the wall, that I realized I wasn't the only one in the room crying. I turned my head warily to see Kaylie sitting against the opposite wall, biting her fist to keep from sobbing. When she turned her icy glare to me, I looked away like I always did.
“You're going to ruin everything!" she hissed, still trying to keep herself in control.
I didn't look at her, but I couldn't stop myself from rolling my eyes. D.K. didn't love her, he was just using her. I'd only been with them a couple days, and even I could see that clear as day. What she needed was a good, sound kick in the rear to…
“I'm the only one keeping him from killing my brother!" she said, interrupting my thoughts. I turned to her in shock as she got to her feet, wiping the tears from her face. “If I'm not there, he'll get mad and… and… Just stop making him mad!"
With that last scream, Kaylie threw the door open and ran into the hallway, hollering for her little bootie pie, leaving me all alone in my confusion.
NEXT TIME: Well, I for one think that could have gone MUCH worse. D.K. doesn't seem too happy about the G-Nomes being on his turf. What's he gonna do about it?