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God of Ruin: Chapter 31


After I reach the haunted house, I realize with a bit of shame that I don’t actually have a key.

Well, screw that.

I’m not going back home now that I’m here.

After a slight maneuver, I park my car near the gate, hop on top of the hood, then climb the metal bars and jump down on the other side.

My legs take the hit, but I’m good. I stare at my phone one last time in case Landon has graced me with a reply.



My feet come to a slow halt at the front garden. My flowers are slowly growing. One of them, a lone blue gentian flower, is blooming.

It’s not a coincidence.

I can’t believe Landon, who proudly confessed that he’s the enemy of everything flora and fauna, has not only been watering the flowers, but he’s also trimmed the grass around it and removed the parasites.

I crouch in front of them and gently run my fingers along the seams of a bloom, my heart squeezing for an unknown reason.

Why do I feel so embarrassingly hollow all of a sudden?

After I apologize to the flowers for not visiting sooner, I head to the door and reach into the deep hole in the tree where Landon hides the spare key.

A smile pulls on my lips when I find it, then use it to get inside. My mouth hangs open when I see the interior of the house.

Or more like, renovated interior.

Aside from the new furniture, there’s a new wooden floor, windows, and elegant muslin curtains.

The renovated Victorian balcony overlooks a newly mowed back garden. The fallen branches and grotesque trees have disappeared. Instead, the view is much more manicured, elegant, even.

The fact that Landon still made these changes even though I was boycotting this place warms my heart.

I walk into his studio, expecting to find new creations. However, the place is creepily the same as I left it over three weeks ago.

The same half-finished statue of a woman fighting a demon. A man screaming into his own ear. A demon drowning in a pool of his disfigured face.

Landon’s art is the same as the man himself. Unpredictable, thought-provoking, and, most importantly, intense.

The only thing different is a statue in the corner, covered by a white sheet.

I remove it with an unsteady hand. Sure enough, I’m staring at myself.

Standing only in panties, I’m glaring down and holding up two middle fingers. My lips part when I realize Lan replicated my look from when he first chased me up to the roof.

I get closer, my heart beating so loud, I hear the rush of blood in my ears. His attention to the details grips me in a merciless chokehold.

He didn’t miss a single element from that day. Not my curved lashes, the ribbons tangled in my hair, the lines of my collarbone, the slope of my breasts, the hard nipples, the creases in my panties, and even the chains on my boots.

The closer I study it, the deeper I’m pulled into the lethal beauty that stares back at me. This feeling isn’t because I’m looking at myself. No. It’s because Landon’s hands made this.

I don’t even know when he had the time to perfect this…I have no clue what to call it. A masterpiece seems too generic. Too little to encompass the meaning behind what his hands made.

I touch her cheek to make sure it’s real and I’m not, in fact, imagining myself as a statue.

I never knew art could bring about these strong emotions.

“What are you doing here?”

I startle and nearly knock the statue over. I catch it at the last second, my heart nearly splattering on the floor.

Slowly, I turn around to find Landon standing at the entrance, a hand shoved in his pocket and his face a map of colossal darkness.

My eyes fly to the splashes of blood on the collar of his white shirt and a dash of panic slithers its way to the base of my stomach.

“What happened?” I sign and point at his shirt.

He doesn’t even look at it. “You didn’t answer my question, Mia. What are you doing here after you made it perfectly clear that we won’t be meeting on my territory anymore?”

It’s not only his territory. It’s mine, too.

Also, what’s with his increasingly somber voice? I wished I was only imagining it earlier, but no. His tone is as dark as the blue pools of his eyes.

It’s been a long time since Landon looked at me with such disapproval.

I realize with a heavy heart that he only looked at me like this after I bathed him in pig blood and he was out for revenge.

Only, now, there’s no trace of his taunting smirk and godlike confidence that can’t even be rivaled by the devil.

“I texted you that I wanted to see the statue. You didn’t reply,” I sign, holding on to my calm by a thread.

“Oh?” He pushes off the wall and an urgent need to run away slaps me in the face. I don’t, though, and choose to stand in the path of the deadly storm.

“So you do know how to text, and here I thought you were ghosting me again.”

I track his deliberate stalking, my heartbeat escalating with each step he takes forward. “I wasn’t.”

“Why not? I thought we weren’t supposed to meet today, because we apparently met our quota, no?”

“I changed my mind.”


His voice vibrates close to my face as he stops in front of me. I’m assaulted by the scent of his intoxicating cologne and the ethereal view of his features.

And it’s really not a wise idea to think of him as the most beautiful man I’ve ever seen when he seems to be on the verge of squashing me between his fingers.

“You seem nervous, Mia. Is there a reason for that?”

I shake my head, and for the first time, I’m glad I can’t speak or I would’ve definitely stuttered.

“Let’s try again. Is there something I need to know about?”

My lips tremble as the pressure of his gaze strips me naked, leaving me unprotected when facing the overpowering intensity of his eyes.

Maybe I should confess about Rory. After all, he did talk to him over the phone and it’s not a good idea to pretend nothing happened. If I tell him that I wouldn’t even look in that prick’s direction, he’d believe me.


Still, I sign, “Something like what?”

“Like this.” He grabs the edge of my scarf and I yelp as he pulls it free.

I slap a hand on the hickey and I know I’ve made a terrible mistake when he clicks his tongue.


“First, you let someone else touch you, then you do a flimsy job of hiding it with a scarf, and now, you’re trying to do it with your hand?” His voice darkens with every word. “Do you honestly believe you can protect the hickey from me?”

I shake my head.

I’m not trying to protect it. And yes, maybe a part of me believes what that asshole Rory said about how Landon stops being interested when someone else touches what’s his.

That possibility leaves me inexplicably on the edge. I tried to purge Landon out of my life, but that was a joke.

I seriously don’t know how I’d be able to go on without his craziness in my life anymore.

And that’s a scary thought that I don’t even like to consider.

“Drop your hand,” he orders with a tone that could accidentally cut someone—that someone being me.

I shake my head.

Maybe if he doesn’t look at it, his anger will dissipate—

In a fraction of a second, Landon grabs my wrist and forces it down.

His lips purse in a disapproving line and his eyes become two black holes that look like they’re straight out of hell.

Sweat beads on my spine and temples as I slowly break under the suffocating tension he commands with his eyes alone.

“Seems that you’ve forgotten who’s the only one you belong to and could use a reminder.” And with that, he leans down and bites on the hickey.


Like a bloodthirsty vampire.


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