· · · P R O L O G U E · · ·
[ Milan, Italy ]
A year earlier
[ MILES ]
It would take the uninvited prick another minute before he could reach Paul's unit on the top floor, but I couldn't risk it.
My skin crawled at the mere thought of having to interact with the guy again. So I rushed out of the crowded living room full of drunks to fulfill a stupid dare, just so I wouldn't have to deal with unnecessary drama tonight.
It was my best friend's birthday, and I shouldn't steal the spotlight just 'cause my stubborn ex couldn't take a damn hint. I'd already told Paul and my friends not to tell Niccolo I was here and they agreed, but on the condition that I'd finish the dare. It was my turn in the stupid Spin The Bottle game.
Quite nervous and gladly alone, I pushed open the door to Paul's bathroom. I thanked my luck when my tired eyes landed on a familiar brunette in dark jeans and a loose sweatshirt. The girl was all alone, just reading a book in Paul's bathtub. "Sorry. I didn't..."
"Hi." The long—haired brunette glanced up from the textbook she held. She smiled warmly at me.
"Hi," I timidly greeted back.
"We've met before."
"Yeah." I smiled back, quite surprised she even remembered. "Paris Fashion Week. Last year."
"Yeah." The slim brunette sat back in the tub, her head leaning against the tiled wall. "How you been? Didn't think you remembered me."
"So—so." I stepped inside the narrow bathroom, glad that I had someone else to talk to for the rest of the night. I'd had vodka and tequila already, but my boredom still plagued me. "You?"
"Prepping for makeup classes."
"I see." I sat on the cold tiles beside the gray tub.
"You went to college together? Paul and RJ?" she asked.
"Yeah." I muffled a burp with my fist. One too many beers again. It wasn't even ten yet. I forgot her nickname again, but I knew it started with a 'K'. Kyle? Kaye?
"I'm sorry. You need to use the bathroom?" She tried to get up.
"No. I was just..." I glanced to the closed door to make sure I'd locked the doorknob. "Trying to avoid someone."
"Mm—kay. Uninvited guest?"
I looked away and crossed my legs together on the floor. "More like, uninvited ex."
"Ah." She nodded and giggled.
"He just parked outside." I heard Niccolo had just arrived, probably to confront me about my father's ex—mistresses and some other shit Niccolo had dug up on my family. Niccolo also sent me some rants about the clan's well—kept secrets. I didn't feed his attention—seeking behavior then—I wasn't into drama.
"Honestly, I was looking for you because of a stupid dare."
"What?" Mykaela squinted at me and laughed softly. "They're still at it?"
"Bored out of their minds." I scratched the back of my head and my slightly sweaty nape. I was actually nervous about doing the dare.
"I guess they ran out of beer for beer pong." She chuckled at me. Her grin showed her perfect teeth that livened up her pale green eyes. "What'd they give ya?"
"They told me you're a med student. So, naturally, Paul comes up with this genius idea of me asking you to do a blood pact." I scoffed and rolled my eyes.
She laughed again.
"They're fuckin' wasted. I sincerely apologize for their stupid ideas for killing the time."
"Blood pact?" she repeated with a pout and wrinkled brows. "That's...weird."
"Yeah. Just shit I gotta deal with on a regular basis."
"Simple and doable, though." She chuckled and hopped out of the bathtub. "Got a Swiss army knife?"