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Teaser: Long Past Dawn

Warning: graphic sense of violence, underage drinking, and sex. Please be advised.

 

St. Augustine, Florida

MIGUEL, HERE TO MEET his friend Mateo, storms through the sea of bodies, shoving his way to the bar. He barks his order, something sweet and citrus, but enough to get his blood pumping. Fists pound in the air, as glitzy raucous party-goers, sway to the music. It seems alive with the air so thick it’s almost as if he’s underwater. He’s here to meet his friend, Mateo.

The bruise on his eye throbs, blood still trickles down his brow from where his foster father, Felipe, had punched him earlier. He can’t even remember what he did to piss Felipe off. It started with a few jeers here and there, scathing comments about being freeloaders, then it ended with Felipe’s fist raining down on him.

Fucking bastard. Miguel knows he shouldn’t have left Valeria alone with him. 

It’s all the same shit. Guilt rakes up and down his body, but he pays at the counter, not bothering to flash his fake ID then downs his drink.

Shit. No sign of Mateo. Oh, well. He can’t wait forever.

Miguel fights his way back through the crowd, desperate to get home soon. It’s late. Valeria will be worried. That’s enough motivation to keep him moving faster. He’s only about halfway across the room when he finally loses his patience and shoves into the next person blocking his path.

The man turns, a deadly glint in his eye as he sees who had just pushed him. Miguel glares back defiantly, the stranger looking barely old enough to be allowed in a club at all.

He’s handsome. Devastatingly so. Deadly. A shiver runs down his spine and he banishes it with the hot flood of disgust that washes through him. This is not the time or place.

The man’s gaze morphs into something softer, steel molten down with fire. A smirk drags across his face and he steps closer. His hair is wild auburn curls, his skin ochre like the setting sun. The stranger’s eyes are a swirling mix of greens, blues, and browns, a smoky hazel deep and penetrating. He’s wearing a neon green sheer top, his pierced nipples flickering in the strobe lights and his black skin-tight jeans make his legs look endless.

“Can you back the fuck off?” Miguel tries to say but his voice gets lost in the heavy, pounding bass. He huffs out a breath and turns to continue elbowing his way through the crowd. He barely manages a step when a hand encircles his wrist; the strength in that grip forces him to stop.

He whips his head around to look back at the man who is impeding his escape. The fiery look is still there, as Miguel glowers at him. The man just grins lazily, tugging on his wrist until he trips forward.

The move causes Miguel to press up against the man, both of his hands splaying across his chest and his face nearly buried in the crook of the man’s neck. What the fuck? He tries to wrench himself back, regain some distance from the man, when the other bends slightly to brush his lips against the shell of Miguel’s ear.

“Leaving so soon?” His voice is hot and wet against his earlobe. Miguel shudders and he feels the other man smile. “Dance with me.”

Fuck no. The stranger slots one of his thighs between Miguel’s legs and presses forward, rolling his hips indecently. Miguel sucks in a sharp breath. With half a mind to punch the man in the throat, he leans back slightly only to find his movement being followed and then a pair of lips attach themselves to the exposed column of his throat.

Miguel gasps, accidentally grinding down into the firm muscle of the other man’s thigh. The lips at his neck stop moving for a moment, then he hauls Miguel upright and spins him around until his back is pressed to his massive chest.

Fire blazes across his cheeks.

“You—”

“I know you want this,” the man growls in his ear and Miguel fights to keep his knees from giving out. “Knew as soon as you pushed me that no one dressed this much like a prude isn’t actually a slut.”

Prude? Miguel bristles. Where did he get off saying that? There’s nothing wrong with the way he’s dressed. If jeans and a white t-shirt are prudish then this guy is obviously a lunatic. Large hands encircle his waist, rucking up the material of his thin shirt and digging into the soft flesh underneath. A thick fog permeates Miguel’s mind and for a moment he forgets that he was trying to leave, forgets that Valeria is waiting for him.

The man’s hands climb higher and the trail of fire they leave behind is as strong as any drug. A thumb brushes over his nipple and Miguel chokes on a moan, the noise instantly swallowed by the music. The man smiles and takes the lobe of Miguel’s ear between his teeth. He tugs. Fuck. Oh.

Miguel’s cock swells to the point of pain.

A hardness pressed against the back of his hip, bigger than he might have expected while still trapped under clothes. What does the stranger look like naked? Is it as big as it feels? Miguel shakes his head to clear his thoughts. No. He should be trying to extricate himself, not thinking such depraved thoughts about a stranger in a club. The man tugs on his earlobe again and he nearly goes boneless in his embrace.

“Let’s get out of here,” the man murmurs, his lips sliding to Miguel’s throat. “I live nearby.”

Miguel should say no. He should pull away, make sure that he gets himself home safely. Or at least text Valeria to tell her he’s okay. He should do many things.

But he doesn’t want to.

At seventeen he’s never had sex before. This would be his first. While other kids spent a lot of time indulging, Miguel spent his jumping from foster home to foster home after his parents were killed in a car accident. What would it be like to escape for once? To leave all the past behind him and have one single night? Miguel turns until he’s face-to-face with the man again. Miguel rises on his tiptoes, bringing his mouth level with the man’s, and leans in to speak into his ear. “What’s your name? Mi Nombre es Miguel—”

“Is that necessary?” comes the response and Miguel nearly rolls his eyes. He may be making a terrible decision tonight but he would still rather have a name even if he only uses it inside his head.

Are names necessary? Is this guy for real? “Just tell me.”

“Javier,” the man finally says with a chuckle, his voice still somehow the loudest thing to Miguel’s hearing. And then, as if that was the key to unlocking what seemed to be the last of his restraint, Javier slides a hand up to grasp at Miguel’s chin with strong fingers while the other slips under his clothes once again. Miguel only has a moment to register what’s about to happen and then a pair of soft lips cover his own.

It’s overwhelming.

Miguel doesn’t know how or what he should be doing with his mouth. He’s never been kissed before. But Javier knows what he’s doing. He tilts Miguel’s head to slide his lips more comfortably against Miguel’s own. He sucks Miguel’s bottom lip just into his mouth, causing a gasp to escape. Miguel thinks there can’t be anything more indecent than what Javier has just done but then Javier bites and Miguel feels his legs give out at last. A noise leaves his throat. He knows only from the vibrations of his own throat and he can only hope that whatever it was isn’t so embarrassing or loud that Javier stops.

He does stop, pulling his face away from Miguel just enough that their lips are no longer touching. Miguel reels back, horrified by what he did, in public no less. He just came out to his sister, much less anybody else.

Miguel stumbles away, suddenly desperate to leave. He shouldn’t have come in the first place. Who was he kidding? He doesn’t belong with beautiful people laughing and dancing and kissing. He’s not one of them—he never will be and it’s time to end the façade.

Javier’s grip on Miguel’s waist had been firm but, not expecting the other man to move away, lets go easily. His reflexes are quick though and he grabs Miguel’s wrist, pulling him back in close when Miguel bumps into another clubgoer behind him.

“Where are you going?” Javier’s voice is hot like thunder. Dangerous. Lethal. Miguel tries to suppress a shiver. It’s not the good kind like the one that had run up his spine upon seeing this man for the first time. This one drips down his back, a cold crawling feeling that has him thinking that he really should have left long ago.

Javier attaches his lips to Miguel’s neck once again, kissing and licking the skin there as if the two of them really were lovers that had found each other on this dance floor tonight. “I asked you before but you never answered,” he continues and Miguel balls his hands into fists to resist making a scene. “Come home with me.”

It’s not a request.

Taking a deep breath, he wraps his arms around Javier’s shoulders, bringing one hand up to stroke the back of his head. Javier detaches himself from Miguel and for a moment, Miguel thinks he sees a hint of insecurity in his eyes. In the next instant though, it’s gone.

It takes barely a nod before Javier is pressing another searing kiss to Miguel’s lips, brief and scorching, before he grabs Miguel’s thin wrist and whisks him down the stairs and out into the crisp night air.

THEY REACH A row of townhouses only a couple of minutes later, climbing the stairs to the fourth floor of the building. Javier must be seventeen or so because he asks Miguel to keep it down while they tiptoe into his house. It’s obvious he still lives with his parents. Javier takes him down a long hallway and opens his bedroom door.

The room is cramped, but the sheets are clean and happily worn in. He manages to catch sight of the basics: a full-sized bed in the middle, pushed up against the wall and the sheets neatly made, a bedside table, and a small dresser on the wall opposite the bed. Javier drags him back into a searing kiss.

Miguel’s never been kissed before, but he thinks he might be getting the hang of it. Javier’s tongue swipes across the seam of his lips and they part with the softest of sighs. He doesn’t mean to let the sound slip out but it’s gone before he can call it back into his body.

Javier bites at Miguel’s bottom lip and he feels his knees go weak. Javier had been anticipating such a reaction though, he slides his hands down to cup them around the outside of Miguel’s thighs and hoists him up as if he weighs nothing. The shock of it causes Miguel to wrap his arms tightly around Javier’s neck, the position pressing their bodies together in a way that’s so indecent Miguel can only be glad they aren’t in public anymore.

His hips are snug against Javier’s, slotting together like puzzle pieces. Heat licks across his belly, coiling hard and fast enough to make his cock twitch.

“Down, let me down!” Miguel barks, turning his head to break the kiss. Javier doesn’t listen but instead trails more kisses down Miguel’s jaw and throat, pausing at one spot to bite and suck the skin hard. Miguel shoves his chest in response.

“I said let me down!”

Javier pulls off his skin with a pop, the sound echoing in the silent room and highlighting to Miguel just how ridiculous this all is. Maybe he still has time to get himself out of it if Javier would ever let his feet touch the ground.

“Are you sure that’s what you want?” Javier teases.

“Yes,” Miguel replies, turning his nose in the air. He doesn’t see the smirk that Javier gives him before taking a step back from the wall. He doesn’t let Miguel down immediately, spinning around instead of taking three strides across the room and tilting Miguel to topple them both onto the bed.

“Be careful what you wish for,” Javier murmurs before attacking Miguel’s lips once again.

It’s overwhelming, the way that Javier covers Miguel’s body with his own, and the thought of escaping dissipates once again.

Javier doesn’t seem to notice as he kisses Miguel’s lips, his tongue swirling inside as if he wants to paint that wet space with his essence. His hands roam at Miguel’s sides, sliding under his shirt to grip at his waist and Miguel thinks that this man might be able to break him if they were to meet again in maybe five years.

Javier takes hold of the hem of Miguel’s shirt and slides it up so that it bunches around Miguel’s chest. Javier leaves Miguel’s lips and sits back, staring down at the other man’s body with a sort of crazed hunger. Javier places a hand in the middle of Miguel’s chest and, feather-light, trails it down Miguel’s body. The feeling low in his belly returns in full force when he realizes that Javier is unbuttoning his jeans to remove them from his legs.

“Wait—I’m not—I’ve never—” Miguel tries to say but the words get lost as Javier presses his nose into the bulge of Miguel’s crotch and inhales.

“Mm, you smell so good… don’t worry, I’ll take care of you,” Javier says into Miguel’s underwear. “Good enough to eat.” Javier shimmies back and yanks Miguel’s jeans down to his ankles in one quick movement and throws them to the floor. “You’re so hot. So sexy.” Javier’s voice is muffled by Miguel’s underwear but the vibrations of his throat make Miguel bite his lip to stop from moaning out loud. Javier tilts his head up, looking at Miguel’s face and his eyes darken once again.

“You’ve got a face that deserves to be fucked.”

Javier tugs Miguel’s cockhead out from the waistband of his underwear and circles the tip with his finger, spreading the clear liquid that has been slowly leaking from it. He licks at it, just once before pulling Miguel’s briefs off entirely, tossing them somewhere behind him. Miguel has nowhere to hide as he lays on the bed, bare before Javier who is still fully dressed. The wave of apprehension rolls through his stomach again and settles low as if building to something the longer Javier looks at him.

“Mhm—you—please don’t—” Miguel stammers, torn between asking Javier to remove his clothes and keeping those thoughts firmly inside his head. Javier seems to ignore him, however, as he reaches for something next to the bed. Javier doesn’t even look at the bottle in his hands, continuing to stare at Miguel’s body as a man possessed. Miguel nearly gets up the courage to speak again when he feels more than sees Javier press a wet finger against his fluttering hole.

Javier’s lips curl up in a smirk as he slowly pushes the tip in, making Miguel squeak. Miguel can’t help it as his body clenches around the intrusion, now sliding further inside. It burns in a way that edges on painful in short moments before the fire dies into a pleasant warmth. Miguel is only just getting used to the feeling before Javier slides his finger out and then shoves it back in.

It burns. Javier works a single digit, thrusting in and out of Miguel’s puckered hole. Javier is truly a maniac, alternating between short thrusting movements and long, slow drags.

The heat is everywhere by now, Miguel trying to catch his breath as the thing in his belly continues to roll up in bigger and bigger waves, threatening to crest at any moment.

Just when the all-over heat is too much to bear, it stops. Javier removes his finger from Miguel and does not put it back in like before. He smiles at Miguel’s unfocused gaze as he merely runs that finger around the edge of that cute puckered entrance.

“Why—why’d you stop?” Miguel slurs and Javier grins.

“Can’t have you finishing before the main event even starts,” Javier says. “But you have to be a good boy and don’t come.”

Javier removes the shirt that has been covering up his tanned and toned torso this whole time. Like Miguel’s clothes, he tosses them to the floor. The sight of his muscles flexing makes Miguel’s mouth water and he wants to run his tongue over that perfect skin.

Javier just grins as he unbuttons his jeans and Miguel realizes with dawning horror that he’s about to see all of Javier in his undressed glory. He slides his jeans down his legs along with his briefs and steps out of them to stand fully naked next to Miguel, who cannot tear his gaze away as much as he needs to.

It’s huge. There is no way that enormous appendage is going to fit inside his body. Panic threatens to swallow him whole. “Don’t… you can’t put that thing in!”

“Where else am I going to put it?” Javier demands.

Miguel takes a deep breath, swallows, then forces his eyes upward as Javier taps on the underside of his chin.

“You can touch it,” he murmurs. “But you have to call me—Papi chulo—first.” Pimp Daddy.

Miguel glares up at Javier, wondering if he’s like this with every lover he’s been with. “No fucking way, there’s no way I’m calling you—that! We’re the same age!”

“Aww, but, babe,” Javier cajoles, “just hearing it fall from your lips would be precious. Don’t you want to give me more?” He bends down to whisper in Miguel’s ear. “Don’t you want to know what I can do if you just give me this?”

Suppressing a shudder, Miguel screws his eyes shut and turns his head away. The word leaves him so quietly he’s not even sure he heard it himself. Javier bites his earlobe and tugs. “You’ll have to do better than that, that—I think that’s a better name for you.”

Javier slides his body over Miguel’s once more, his oppressive heat making it difficult to think as their cocks brush against each other. He feels Javier smile into the crook of his neck and then they’re kissing again.

It’s a different sensation once again kissing Javier this time even though he’s done it more than he cares to count tonight. The feeling of skin against skin all over is dangerous. It feels too good and Miguel worries that he might not ever want to leave the cocoon that has been wrapping around them both.

Javier trails kisses down Miguel’s body, stopping at his hip to rest his cheek there. For a fleeting second, it’s almost like they’ve been here before, done this countless times with the comfortable intimacy only known to those who have loved each other across lifetimes.

And then the moment breaks as Javier bites into Miguel’s hip at the same time as driving two fingers inside his entrance. He works them in deeper and deeper with short, quick thrusts and Miguel can barely keep himself from whimpering. The burn is much more intense than the first time but the pleasure that follows is better too. The wave rises so much faster than before and when Javier spreads his fingers inside Miguel’s body, the wave breaks, causing his cock to jump and spurt ropes of white as his vision dims and his body falls boneless to the bed.

It feels like forever when Miguel returns to his senses. He blinks, his eyes unable to focus as he tries to regain an understanding of where he is. The first thing he notices is pain. There’s a pain in the lower part of his body that feels like something might be ripping him apart. He whimpers as the tears clouding his vision slip down his cheeks and he sees a man above him, pistoning his hips with such force that it shakes the whole bed.

Javier grins as he sees Miguel’s eyes slide open. “Glad to see you’re finally awake. Can’t believe you’d let me have all this fun alone.”

The pieces slot together as Miguel realizes that the pain is connected to how Javier is furiously pounding his cock inside Miguel’s ass. As his hearing returns, the obscene slap of flesh meeting flesh echoes off the walls.

“Fuck you’re so beautiful. Do you like it?” Javier growls. “You take me so well. It’s like you were made to be my cocksleeve.”

Miguel can’t seem to form words, can’t tell Javier that it hurts even as his dick has grown hard again, leaking over the mess already drying on his stomach. He moans but the sound only seems to spur Javier on further, his thrusts growing inexplicably more powerful. It’s as if Miguel can feel him in his throat.

Javier continues to slide in and out of Miguel’s hole, the slapping noise accompanied by a wet squelching that Miguel thinks should be disgusting. He doesn’t know what to think when instead, it’s the last thing that pushes him over the edge again and he comes even harder than before, clenching around Javier’s cock before slipping into oblivion for the second time.

He wakes to a quiet room, empty and cold as he gets his bearings. A shiver rolls through his body as he lies still on the bed. Distantly, he hears the sound of a shower running and assumes that is where Javier must be.

Miguel sits up and nearly falls back down as the pain in his ass flares, a sharp stab that fades into a continuous, dull throb. He feels the crunch of dried cum on his stomach and shame washes over him, stronger than any of the misgivings he’d had before beginning this night. He checks his phone and notices twenty-eight missed calls from Valeria.

While he can still hear the water running in the bathroom, Miguel finds his clothes and dresses, ignoring the pain, the tacky pull of his skin, and the smell. The water shuts off as he wrenches the door open and runs down the hall. He makes it out the front door just as Javier leaves the bathroom, and flees into the early morning light of dawn.

Miguel makes it home only to run headfirst into his foster father.

Six months later…

MUSIC THRUMS THROUGH his body, sweat rains as women move hypnotically to the trap music blasting through the speakers. The lights make his pupils dilate as they flash wildly enough to make the world seem like streams of vibrant colors. Miguel forces his way through the throngs of people, pushing some aside as he makes his way to the far corner booth.

Jefe!” Mateo calls, gesturing him over to their seat. Miguel walks over to him, clasping their hands together and taking a seat. “¿Dónde has estado?” Mateo slumps down beside him and a girl choked with gold chains slithers her hand around his bicep giving Miguel a dark look.

“Nowhere.” Miguel pours a drink at the table, downing it quickly. He turns to Mateo, eyes lingering on his plush full lips. Tonight, he’s wearing baggy jeans with a button-up dark blue plaid shirt. “Been at school. That’s all.”

Mateo throws his arm around him, lips curling into a smile, and his eyes glint with something deadly. “That’s not what I heard, jefe.” His arm tightens. “I heard you’ve been avoiding us. You’ve got to prove your worth or else I can’t take you seriously…” He kinks his eyebrow making his face appear more angular, striking. “By the way… I’m sorry about your sister, fam. I wish we could have been there to show those fuckers who’s boss, ya feel me?”

Miguel grabs another drink. “Thanks.”

“Lucky for you,” Mateo purses his lips, “I brought the party here.” He jerks his chin towards the other side of the club to where another group of boys sit. Anger sparks in his core as he sees them across the room lounging there. “Those fuckers didn’t get punished enough if you asked me. I mean… your sister’s life, compañero, for a few hours in prison? Not even a murder charge? The system is wack yo.” He takes a sip of vodka right from the bottle. “The day you kill the fucker is the day you get justice.”

Rage boils inside him. Miguel glares at the men with hate pulsating in every fiber of his being. They should die for what they did to Valeria. He runs a hand through his buzzed hair, lips downturned into a grimace. “What did you have in mind?”

“That’s what I’m talking about.” Mateo gleams. “First, we fuck shit up, then we steal their business. I need a runner, there ain’t nobody as fast as you anymore.”

“Done.” His jaw tightens as he looks at them.

“I heard the rat bastard Alejandro’s aligned himself with King Kong.”

“Shit.”

“Yeah,” Mateo scoffs, shaking his head. “Tony Tormenta’s godson with mass connections to the Gulf cartels. He’s untouchable now, but my colleagues and I have a way around him. If we can sell faster than Alejandro and his crew, we might be able to get in with King Kong himself. I heard”—Mateo lowers his voice, leaning towards him—“even fucking el diablo spat that fucker out of hell.” He laughs loudly, tightening his arm around Miguel’s shoulder before releasing him.

Miguel doesn’t give a fuck about all that. All he wants is the person responsible for ruining his entire life. “Anything else?”

“Relax.” Mateo hands him another drink. “We’ll get them later on. I want to enjoy myself first, if you know what I mean?” His eyebrows wriggle, then he turns back to the girl next to him and drags her into his lap. They kiss passionately but her eyes remain open, trained on Miguel.

He should be used to it by now. These girls always thought they were so hardcore until they hooked up with the wrong guy, and then they moved on to someone else for protection. Her acrylic nails drag across Mateo’s shirt before digging in as he works his way down her dewy neck. Mateo’s hand slips inside her loose shirt, thumbing her perky nipples as she moans heartily. Her golden-brown skin is like the mellow-brown light that glimmers against the forest floor.

Their kiss is brash as their tongues wage war in such a slovenly fashion that drool dribbles down her chin. Mateo’s fingers slip beneath the slit in her skirt, Miguel watches as he expertly twists her panties to the side before sinking into her white heat.

Miguel rolls his eyes then starts to drink straight from the bottle, ignoring them altogether. It seems like everyone is here tonight. Alberto lingers off the side, speaking in hushed tones with some barbie with way too much makeup. He slides her some coke and then heads towards the back, his hulking frame towering above the rest. There are a few others he recognizes; they say hello but don’t approach him. Miguel’s eyes dart to the booth again, this time they lock with Alejandro.

It was a drug deal gone wrong. Alejandro had shown up at his foster home with his goons ready to kick Miguel’s ass, but his foster father had beaten them all to it, so basically all he had to do was join in. Watching Miguel get almost beaten to death had set Valeria off; she had an episode but Miguel wasn’t able to get to her in time and she knocked her head against the stone steps cracking her skull open.

She died instantly.

Miguel hasn’t forgiven himself. They had been him nearly unconscious—it was so bad his brain swelled with fluid and he ended up in a coma for three weeks. After that his memories are frayed, he can barely remember anything leading up to the fight. Alejandro was slapped with an assault charge walking away with community service, his foster father for manslaughter. The whole case had wrapped up in six months. His father’s best friend Juan had gotten wind of the case and had filed immediately for guardianship.

Miguel slams the bottle down; it sloshes dangerously at the edge of the table. His brain is underwater foggy as the alcohol weaves through his veins. Bitterness sweeps over him like a tidal wave, thick and stifling. The bastard dares to show his face, especially after everything he’s done. He can’t stand it.

Alejandro smiles while he takes a drink, his long hair pulled into an aggressive slicked-back ponytail. His piercing eyes linger, beady, vile. Miguel remembers them while Alejandro beat him to a pulp. He’s known creatures like Alejandro his whole life. In the foster homes they dominated, preying on the younger ones by being particularly belligerent.

They lock eyes.

Miguel is on his feet before he even registers it. “Wait—Miguel—” Mateo exclaims as Miguel strides across the dance floor with blood roaring in his ears. The world swims in hazes as it zooms in to focus on Alejandro. The bastard stands, his goon’s position ready for a fight. Miguel’s bones are made of iron as he walks straight into the fire. He’ll kill the bastard, if it’s the last thing he’ll do. His ears ring with each step as his body drives him forward on autopilot. Miguel’s stomach flips when he steps forward, his hands curling into fists.

Alejandro juts his chin out, arms spread eagle. “How’s your sister, jefe?”

Rage bursts hotly across his vision so fast and furious he can’t see straight. Alejandro laughs maliciously, it cuts right to the marrow of his bones. Miguel smirks, bleak and twisted. He’s too drunk to care. The world is spinning, but nothing else matters except carving the bastard’s face open.

“She’s dead—” as if the bastard didn’t know already, “—and so are you.”

Miguel punches him.

The club erupts. Each man springs into action, fists flying and clawing at anything they can reach. Miguel is fast, but Alejandro’s faster. Pain bursts in his head as something hard and cold crashes into his temple. A bottle. There’s an ugly sound, bones cracking, flesh splitting, and then he’s lying on his back in a puddle of his blood. Alejandro stares down at him grinning a bloody smile until he drops the bottle and takes off as sirens blare. Fucking hell. “Let’s move!” Mateo yanks him off the floor and drags him out the back.

They split ways outside. Miguel’s ears ring as he races through the suburban buildings with bile rising in his throat. Everything is too bright and little starbursts flit in and out of his vision. He makes it back to Juan’s house, stumbling through the back door, tearing off his clothes as he moves towards his bedroom. On the way, he kicks a lot of useless junk piling up in the hallway. For some reason, Juan likes to collect garbage and doesn’t believe in trash cans.

Miguel runs into the bathroom, grabbing a wad of toilet paper and dabbing it on his temple. It’s not too bad from what he can tell in the flickering lights, the gash should be fine tomorrow if he covers it up properly. He stares at his reflection for several moments, taking in his full set lips with a mole at the edge. Miguel’s eyes are bright, luminescent crescents in the dull lights. You look so much like your mother, Juan used to say.

Miguel tumbles into bed with the world still spinning. Alejandro. That sick fuck. He’d kill the bastard for what he did. It’s about time he stopped wallowing in self-pity and angst.

It’s about time he got his revenge.

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