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Bloody Valentine. by: Melissa De La Cruz. Publication date: Publisher For print-disabled users. Borrow this book to access EPUB files. Then a popular girl from her school is found dead drained of all her blood. Schuyler 5-Misguided Angel - Melissa de la ruthenpress.info KB. Lang Leav - Love and ruthenpress.info KB. 12 . Actions. Report. Blue Bloods Series by Melissa De La Cruz [5_5] Bloody ruthenpress.info 82 KB.
He looked at Mimi with such fiery hatred that she almost cowered at his words. But she was no weakling. She was Azrael, and Azrael did not cower, not even to Abbadon. And yet all you seem to care about, my darling, is that you no longer get to play with your little love toy. But before he could wield another blow, Mimi leaped up and slammed him against the window, knocking him completely out of breath.
She sprung up with her hands clenched, her nails sharp as claws, and fangs bared. They met halfway in the air, and Jack put a hand on her throat and began to squeeze. But she scratched at his eyes and wrenched her body so that she was rolling on top of him, her sword at his throat, with the upper hand. Mimi sent. This was Abbadon the Cruel.
The Angel of Destruction. He could and would destroy her if he had to. If he felt like it. He had destroyed worlds before. Schuyler had heard her calling him a "vagrant" and a "wastoid" to his face when he refused to give up his seat in the cafeteria. She and Oliver had warned him when he'd sat down, but he wouldn't listen.
Schuyler and Oliver had immediately grabbed their trays, but Dylan had refused to budge, which had instantly endeared him to them. She passed out at Block What else could it be?
There were so many things that could cause a person's untimely demise. She'd read about them. She knew. She'd lost her father in her infancy, and her mother was stuck in a coma. Life was more fragile than anyone ever realized. One minute, you could be getting a smoke in the alley on the Lower East Side with your friends, having drinks and dancing on tables in a popular night club. And the next minute, you could be dead.
After the news of Aggie's death made the rounds, Mimi's popularity swelled to epic proportions because now she wasn't just beautiful, she was vulnerable as well—she was human. She'd even cried on Oprah. Aggie had been Mimi's best friend. Well, no, not exactly. Mimi had many best friends. It was the backbone of her popularity. Many people felt close to her, even though Mimi felt close to no one.
But still, Aggie had been special to her. She'd grown up with her. Ice-skating at Wollman Rink, etiquette lessons at the Plaza, summers in Southampton. The Carondolets were an old New York family; her parents were friends with Mimi's parents. Their moms went to the same hairdresser at Henri Bendel. She was a true blue blood, like herself. Mimi loved the attention, loved the fawning. She said all the right things, voicing her shock and grief with a halting voice.
She dabbed her eyes without smudging her eyeliner. She recalled fondly how Aggie had lent her her favorite Rock and Republic jeans once. And never even asked for them back! Now that was a true friend. After Chapel, Mimi and Jack were pulled aside by one of the runners, a scholarship kid who served as an errand boy for the Headmistress's office.
Inside the plush-carpeted office, the Head of Schools told them they could take the whole day off—no need to wait till noon. The Committee understood how close they were to Augusta. Mimi was elated. Even more special treatment! But Jack shook his head and explained that if it was all right with everyone, he was going to attend his second-period class. Outside the administration corridor, the vast carpeted hallways were empty. Everyone else was in class.
They were practically alone. Mimi reached out and smoothed her brother's collar, tracing her fingers on his sunburned neck. He flinched at her touch. Not here. At some point, things would change.
She would change. He knew that, but it was as if he couldn't accept it, or he wouldn't let himself accept it. Maybe it was all part of the process. Her father had made the history of the family very clear to them, and their part in it was set in stone. Jack didn't have a choice, whether he wanted it or not, and Mimi felt somewhat insulted at the way he was acting. She looked at her brother—her twin, her other half. He was part of her soul.
When they were little, it was like they were the same person. When she stubbed a toe, he cried. When he fell off the horse in Connecticut, her back ached in New York. She always knew what he was thinking, what he was feeling, and she loved him in a way that scared her. It consumed every inch of her being. But he'd been pulling away from her lately. He was distracted, distant. His mind was closed to hers. When she reached out to feel his presence, there was nothing. A blank slate.
No, more like a muffling. A blanket over a stereo. He was tuning her out. Masking his thoughts. Asserting his independence from her. It was troubling, to say the least. She was wearing a black cotton sweater, rendered see-through underneath the fluorescent light of the hallway. Jack smiled a wry smile. That would be like hating myself. And I'm not a masochist. He pulled her in for a hug, pressing his body against hers. They were the same height—their eyes at the same level.
It was like looking into a mirror. But it was nice to be hugged, and she squeezed him back tightly. Now, that was more like it. They'd been there, that night, with Aggie. Aggie shouldn't be dead. Aggie couldn't be dead. It just couldn't be true. It was impossible. In every sense of the word. But they'd seen Aggie's body at the morgue, that cold gray morning. She and Jack had been the ones to identify the body. Mimi's cell number was the first entry in Aggie's phone. They'd held her lifeless hands.
They'd seen her face, the frozen scream. Much worse, they'd seen the marks on her neck.
Ridiculous, even. It simply didn't add up. It was as if the world had been turned upside down. It was against everything they'd been told. She couldn't even begin to make it comprehensible.
There had to be one. Things like this simply didn't happen. Not to them. They've done the tests. The blood—it's gone. It was as if something had skittered across her grave. Mimi recoiled from his embrace. You have to be. It's just not possible. That word that popped up all weekend, Saturday morning, when the call came: repeated by their parents, the Elders, the Wardens, everybody.
What happened to Aggie just wasn't possible. That much they all agreed on. Mimi walked toward an open window, stepped into the sunlight, and gloried in the way it tickled her skin.
Nothing could hurt them. The letters went out today. But they haven't even begun to change yet," Mimi protested.
Everyone has to be warned. Even the premature. She didn't like knowing her novel status would soon be supplanted by a new batch. Where are you going?
Their teacher, Mr. Orion, a curly-haired Brown graduate with a droopy mustache, small, wire-rimmed glasses, a long Cyrano nose, and a penchant for wearing oversized baggy sweaters that hung off his scarecrow-like frame, sat in the middle of the room, leading the discussion. She found a seat near the window, pulling up her chair to the circle around Mr. There were only ten people, the standard class size. Schuyler couldn't help but notice that Jack Force wasn't in his usual seat.
She'd never said a word to him all semester, and she wondered if he would even remember saying hello to her on Friday night. Orion asked, even though it was an irrelevant question. Duchesne was the kind of place that, years after graduation, if you bumped into an alum at an airport, or walking around Centre Pompidou, or downtown at Max Fish, you would immediately download them a drink and ask about their family, because even if you had never exchanged a word while at the school, you knew almost everything about them, down to the intimate details.
Orion asked again. Bliss Llewellyn cautiously raised her hand. Memories of Aggie? What did she really know about her?
She knew that she liked clothes, and shopping, and her tiny little lapdog, Snow White. It was a Chihuahua, like Bliss's, and Aggie had liked to dress her up in silly little outfits. The dog even had a mink sweater that matched Aggie's.
That was as much as Bliss could recall. Who ever really knows anybody? And anyway, Aggie was really Mimi's friend. Bliss thought back on that fateful night. She'd ended up talking to Dylan for what seemed like ages in that back alley. When they'd smoked every last cigarette they had between the two of them, he'd finally gone back to The Bank, and she'd reluctantly returned to Block and Mimi's demands.
Aggie wasn't at the table when she got back, and Bliss hadn't seen her for the rest of the evening. From the Force twins, Bliss knew the basics—they'd found Aggie in "the Land of Nod"—the back room where the club hid druggies who'd passed out—a dirty little secret that Block had successfully kept out of the tabloids, with hefty bribes to cops and gossip columnists alike. Most of the time patrons who passed out woke up hours later just a little worse for wear, with a great anecdote to tell their friends— "And I woke up in this closet, man!
What a long strange trip, right? But something had gone wrong on Friday night. They hadn't been able to revive Aggie. And when "the ambulance" the owner's SUV had deposited her at the St.
Vincent's ER—Aggie was already dead. Drug overdose, everyone assumed. She'd been found in the closet, after all. What did you expect? Except Bliss knew that Aggie didn't touch drugs. Like Mimi's, her vices of choice were tanning salons and cigarettes.
Drugs were looked down upon in Mimi's circle. I'm high on life," Mimi liked to crow. She'd been the one who'd handed Mimi tissues in the hallway. Schuyler could barely disguise her contempt. She liked Mr. Orion, liked his shaggy-dog laid-back approach to life, but she was disgusted by the way he let her peers turn something real—the death of someone they knew, someone hardly sixteen years old—a girl they'd all seen sunbathing in the cortile, powering squash returns in the lower court gyms, or hoovering brownies at the bake sale like all popular Duchesne girls, Aggie had a love affair with food that was out of proportion to her super-skinny appearance —into a trivial matter, a stepping-stone to talk about everyone else's neuroses.
The door opened, and everyone looked up to see a red-faced Jack Force enter the room. He passed his late form to Mr. Orion, who waved it away. He looked tired, and a little rumpled in his creased polo with the shirttails hanging out and baggy wool pants. A slight electric charge went through Schuyler's body, a prickly and not unpleasant sensation.
What had changed? She'd sat next to him before, and he was always invisible to her, until now. He didn't meet her eye, and she was too frightened and self-conscious to look at him.
It was odd to think they were both there that evening. So close to where Aggie had died. But now another Mimi disciple was prattling about her hamster, who'd starved to death when they went on vacation.
Tales of the demise of a similarly beloved lizard, canary, and rabbit were next on deck. Schuyler rolled her eyes and doodled in the margins of her notebook. It was her way of zoning out from the world. When she couldn't take it anymore—her spoiled classmates' navel-gazing rants, endless math lectures, the yawn-inducing properties of single-cell division—she retreated into pen and paper.
She'd always loved to draw. Anime girls and saucer-eyed boys. She was absentmindedly sketching Jack's profile when a hand reached out and scrawled a note on top of her page. She looked up, startled, instinctively covering her drawing. Jack Force nodded somberly at her, tapping on her notebook with a pencil, directing her gaze to the words he'd written.
Aggie didn't die of an overdose. Aggie was murdered. She felt slightly embarrassed, like she always did when she saw the car. She saw her half sister, Jordan, who was eleven and in the sixth grade, waiting for her. They had let the lower form out early too, even though they hardly knew Aggie. The door to the Rolls opened, and a pair of long legs stepped out of the car. Bliss's stepmother, the former BobiAnne Shepherd, wearing a tight pink velour tracksuit with the zipper pulled down to reveal her ample bosom, and high-heeled Gucci clogs, began looking frantically around the clustered students.
Bliss wished, not for the first time, that her stepmother would let her take a cab or walk home like every other kid at Duchesne. The Rolls, the Juicy, the eleven-carat diamond, it was all so Texas. Bliss had learned, from her two months in Manhattan, that it was all about stealth wealth. The richest kids in class wore Old Navy and were on strict allowances.
If they needed a car, their parents made sure it was a sleek and unobtrusive black Town Car. Even Mimi took cabs. Flashy displays of status and affluence were looked down upon.
Of course, these were also the same kids who wore pre-stained jeans and unraveling sweaters from precious SoHo boutiques that charged in the five figures. It was all right to look poor, but actually being poor was completely inexcusable. At first, everyone at school thought Bliss was a scholarship kid, with her fake-looking Chanel bag and her too-shiny shoes.
But the appearance of the Silver Shadow Rolls every afternoon soon put an end to that rumor. The Llewellyns were loaded, all right, but in a vulgar, cartoonish, laughable fashion, which was almost as bad as having no money, but not quite. She smelled like calcified perfume— sweet and chalky. Bliss's real mother had died when she was born, and her father never talked about her. Bliss had no memory of her mother.
When she was three, her father had married BobiAnne, and they'd had Jordan soon after. We're not the ones who were killed. Now, why had she said that? Aggie's death was an accident. A drug overdose. But the word had come out naturally, without her even thinking about it. I know, I know. I heard. The poor Carondolet girl.
Her mother is in shock, the poor thing. Get in, get in. Jordan was stoic as usual, taking her mother's histrionic ministrations with a studied indifference. Her sister couldn't have been more dissimilar to her. Whereas Bliss was tall and willowy, Jordan was short and stocky. Bliss was strikingly beautiful, but Jordan was so plain she was almost homely, a fact that BobiAnne never failed to point out. BobiAnne was always trying to put Jordan on some kind of diet and admonishing her for her lack of interest in fashion or a "beauty regimen" while praising Bliss's looks to the heavens, which aggravated Bliss even more.
You especially, Bliss, no more sneaking out with Mimi Force to god knows where. You're to be home every night by nine.
Bliss rolled her eyes. So now just because some girl died at a nightclub she had some kind of curfew? When did her stepmother even care about stuff like this? Bliss had been going to parties since seventh grade. She'd had her first taste of alcohol then, and had gotten stupid-drunk at the fairgrounds that year; her friend's older sister had had to come and pick her up after she'd vomited and passed out in the haystack behind the Ferris Wheel.
They exited the car and walked into a palatial apartment building.
The Anthetum was one of the oldest and most prestigious addresses in the city. The Llewellyn abode was a triplex penthouse on the top floor. Each room in the apartment was decorated in flamboyant, peacock fashion, and no expense had been spared, from the floor-standing eighteen-carat gold candelabras in the dining room to the diamond-encrusted soap dishes in the powder room.
There was the "Versace" sitting room, filled with the dead designer's antiques that BobiAnne had scooped up at the auction, filled to the brim with sunburst mirrors, gold gilt china cabinets, and bombastic Italian nude sculpture. Another room was the "Bali" room, with wall-to-wall mahogany armoires, rough wooden benches, and bamboo bird cages.
Every item in the room was an authentic, extremely rare and expensive South Asian artifact, but because there were so many of them, the overall effect was that of a fire sale at Pier 1 Imports. There was even a "Cinderella" room, modeled after the exhibit at Disney World—complete with a tiara-wearing mannequin in a dress held up by two fiberglass birds attached to the ceiling. Bliss thought Penthouse de Crap would be more fitting.
Her stepmother was particularly agitated that afternoon. Bliss had never seen her so nervous. BobiAnne didn't even flinch when Bliss trailed dirty footsteps on the immaculate carpet. It had an impressive heft and weight to it, like a wedding announcement.
Bliss opened it, finding a thick embossed card inside. One of the oldest charities in New York, it was also the most prestigious; only the children of the most socially prominent families were invited to join as junior members. At Duchesne, it was simply called "The Committee. Captains of all the school teams were on The Committee, as were the editors of the newspaper and yearbook, but it wasn't an honor society, since rich kids like Mimi Force, who weren't active in any school activities but whose parents were influential New Yorkers, made up the bulk of the membership.
It was snobby, cliquey, and exclusive to the extreme; membership comprised of only kids from the top private schools. The Committee had never even released a full list of its members—if you were on the outside, you could only guess if someone was in it, and only a clue, like a Committee ring, a gold serpent around a cross, worn by a member, would give it away.
Bliss had been under the impression they weren't inducting new members until the spring, but the packet informed her the first meeting was for the following Monday, at the Jefferson Room at Duchesne.
All that hoopla over fundraising and party-planning. She was sure Dylan would find it ridiculous. Not that she cared what Dylan thought. She still didn't know how she felt about him—she felt awful about not even saying hello when he'd tapped her on the shoulder earlier. But Mimi's watchful eyes were upon her, and Bliss just hadn't felt brave enough to give any indication that they were friends.
Were they friends? They were certainly friendly Friday night. You've been chosen," BobiAnne said. Bliss nodded.
Jordan's dark eyes peered at her in an unnerving fashion. Bliss shook her head. Her little sister was so strange. She was so alien to Bliss.
When they were younger, Jordan had followed her everywhere like a lost puppy, and continually wondered why she didn't have curly hair like her sister, fair skin like her sister, and blue eyes like her sister. They used to be friends. But things had changed in the past year. Jordan had become secretive and shy around Bliss. It had been ages since Jordan had asked Bliss to braid her hair. It was in US Weekly last week," Bliss replied. For a charity committee, there were an endless number of forms to be filled out, including a statement of acceptance, that included a commitment of two hours every Monday night.
Jordan shook her head. Didn't you get the ? It was an overdose. Now, get lost, puke-face," Bliss said, throwing a pillow at the door. What was Jordan talking about? What did she know? Why had her stepmother been so affected by Aggie's death? And what was the big deal about joining some charity committee? She called Mimi. She knew Mimi was on The Committee, and Bliss wanted to make sure she was going to be at the meeting.
We have joyful news — the people of this new land have welcomed us with open arms and many gifts. They brought wild game, a large bird that could feed an army, a bounty of vegetables, and maize.
It is a new beginning for us, and we are heartened by the sight of the verdant land, the vast virgin acres where we will make our settlement. All our dreams have been realized. This is what we left our home for — so that the children may grow up safe and whole. EIGHT When school let out, Schuyler caught the crosstown bus at Ninety-sixth Street, sliding her white student MetroCard in the slot and finding an empty seat next to a harassed-looking mother with a double stroller.
Schuyler was one of the few students at Duchesne who took public transportation. The bus slowly lumbered across the avenues, past a host of specialty boutiques on Madison, including the unapologetically-named "Prince and Princess" that catered to the elite under-twelve set—French-smocked cotton dresses for girls and Barbour coats for boys; pharmacies that stocked five-hundred-dollar boar's-hair brushes; and tiny antique shops that sold arcana such as mapmaking equipment and fourteenth-century feather quills.
Then it was through the Central Park greenery to the west side of town, toward Broadway, a change of neighborhood and scenery—Chino-Latino restaurants, less snooty retail shops—then finally a steep right up Riverside Drive. She had meant to ask Jack what he'd meant by his note, but she hadn't been able to catch him after class. Jack Force, who had never even paid attention to her before? First he knows her name, now he's writing her notes?
Why would he tell her Aggie Carondolet was murdered? It had to be some kind of joke. He was playing with her, scaring her, most likely. She shook her head in irritation. I knew you would find me. Being busy takes our mind off being in love at the wrong time, in the wrong place and with the wrong guy. He was far from perfect, moody and distant at times, and burdened with sharp temper and an impulsiveness that was part of his dark nature.
But she felt more love for him than she thought possible. He wasn't perfect, but he was perfect for her. You're all vampire superwoman" Melissa de la Cruz "This is not some silly game This is life and death Angels and demons.
She had been frightened once, to see him in this light, but now that she saw his terrifying face, she found it beautiful. He looked at Mimi with such fiery hatred that she almost cowered at his words.
But she was no weakling. She was Azrael, and Azrael did not cower, not even to Abbadon. And yet all you seem to care about, my darling, is that you no longer get to play with your little love toy.
But before he could wield another blow, Mimi leaped up and slammed him against the window, knocking him completely out of breath. She sprung up with her hands clenched, her nails sharp as claws, and fangs bared.