“What?” Jasper asked. “You want me to do what?”
“Kill them. You have no idea how liberating it felt killing my parents. No, killing those monsters. I knew I had to help those who were hurting like me. I had to kill them to truly feel like myself again. It’s okay if you’re scared. I was too. They’ll say things like they love you and they want the best for you, but it’s a lie. If they truly wanted that, then they would’ve been there for you from the beginning. Not now when the damage is done. If you don’t want to, then say so,” Lance said.
“You didn’t have to kill them.” Jasper waited for him to say it was a joke, but he knew he was serious. Jasper knew what he should say, but for some reason, he couldn’t.
“Give me an answer, Jasper,” Lance said.
“Of course he wouldn’t!” Ben said. “You’re insane! Jasper, come on, tell him no.”
“I-I…” Jasper said, struggling with his thoughts. “I don’t know.”
“You what?” Emily asked, shocked.
“See? You know they are the cause of all this. If they would’ve just been by your side from the beginning, if they would’ve tried to help you, then none of this would’ve happened. Show them your pain. Show them what they made. Or tell me no. Tell me you won’t do it. Tell me you love them. You can’t, can you?”
“Jazzy,” Ronda said, walking towards him. “I know you’re hurting and confused, but murder isn’t the way.”
“Look around you; murder is the name of the game around here. So many people have died. So many lives were lost because everyone wanted the power of a king but didn’t fully understand what that meant. All the past Kings had something wrong with them. Even your father, Joshua,” Lance said.
“I already knew that,” Josh said.
“When I took his place, your father told me something interesting. He told me that being a King means having to deal with the pain of the world. To carry it on your back and use it to make the world better.” Lance laughed. “I thought that was rich coming from him. After what he did to you.”
Josh narrowed his eyes.
“I know what you really did. I know how badly you injured that man. He’s still not fully there. I bet you felt better after, didn’t you?”
“I did,” Josh admitted. “I wanted to keep going.”
“Josh,” Jasper said.
“It’s true. I beat the ******* so bad I did more damage than I thought I did. They told me I just gave him nerve damage, but That was only half of the truth. That doesn’t justify taking my eye!” Josh shouted.
“I know, Josh. I do. Why do you think I chose you to be Jasper’s knight? You both share a deep pain. Families are a dangerous thing. You think they will protect you and keep you safe. That’s not true. No, they say they did it out of love. If they think something’s wrong with you, they’ll try to fix it or ignore it. Look how well it turned out. Look at you. You’re broken. It’s not your fault. You didn’t take your eye. Your father did.” Lance turned to Franklin. “Let’s not forget you, Frank. Your father is the reason your little sister is gone and the reason you both were in the fire. You were in a coma for weeks. Your body was badly damaged. It was a miracle you were even alive. I wasn’t lying when I told you I would find your sister.” Lance held out his phone. “Look.”
Franklin took the phone and started crying. “Wendy.”
“She’s alive. She’s in Zone 4. I can bring her here. You two can be together again. It only takes one word from Jasper or me. Once he fulfills the condition,” Lance said as he took back the phone. “You three have been through a lot. I promise you these monsters will pay for what they did to you. I swear. Starting with these two.” He pointed at Emily and Ben. “I’ll give you five minutes to decide, Jazz. Or I’ll do it for you.”
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