#Chapter 173: Broken Hearts
Enzo and the rest of us stared after Lewis and the dean in disbelief as they walked out of the conference room. Were they really not even going to try to help the surrounding towns? I could understand that Cynthia’s main concern was for her campus, but the Fullmoons were the ones who were at war with the Crescents, so I felt as though it should have been their responsibility to mitigate the damages. The excuse that ‘we figured it out, so the other towns could figure it out as well’ was just pathetic and it made my blood boil.
“What are we gonna do?” Matt asked once we were alone again with our new pack. “They’re really just gonna let all of those other people suffer?”
Enzo shook his head as he clenched his jaw so tightly I could see the muscles straining under his skin. He stood abruptly, pushing his chair back.
“We’ll figure something out,” he said. ” Let’s meet up again tonight to talk about it. For now… We’re gonna help clean up our campus, because it’s obvious that the Fullmoons aren’t gonna be any help.”
I could tell that Enzo was furious that his father’s own Beta would just let other people suffer at the hands of the Crescents. Good, innocent people who had absolutely nothing to do with this stupid war. And it was all because of whatever power Mountainview had thanks to its purely coincidental location. To Lewis and the Fullmoons, Mountainview was the only town that mattered; everywhere else was just collateral..
Either way, we spent the afternoon doing what we promised and cleaning up our campus. Quite a few students volunteered to help as well, and we spent the day picking up debris that had been created by the Crescents. By late afternoon, the campus seemed mostly back to normal; some things, like doors and windows, would need to be repaired, but thankfully the damage wasn’t too bad.
The only place that none of us could bring ourselves to go into was the
infirmary. Going in there only made me think about Tiffany, whose body still wasn’t recovered. I wasn’t sure what the Crescents did to her body after they dragged her away, but at this point, I didn’t want to see it anyway. Days of being left out in the woods – or worse – would have only melted the image of her decaying body into my mind, and I wanted to remember her the way she always was: beautiful, kind, smiling… and alive.
So, we decided to save the infirmary for another day and instead locked it up tightly.
Once we were finished for the day, Enzo and I returned to the dorm to rest for a few hours. We planned to have a meeting with the New Peacekeepers that evening, but we were both so exhausted from everything that we just needed to lay down for a while.
As we laid together in bed, however, I couldn’t get the thought of Selena and Enzo’s father out of my head.
“Enzo?” I said, sitting up on my elbow and looking down at him. “Can I ask you something?”
“Anything,” Enzo replied. His eyes were closed, but he slowly opened them to look at me. Even though there was a distinct amount of pain behind them, I could still see an even more immense amount of love for me that overpowered the pain as he looked up at me.
“If the Alpha King withdrew support… Do you think that means that Selena did something to your father?”
Enzo was silent for a long time. His eyes stared thoughtfully up at the ceiling, his jaw clenching and unclenching as he thought about what I said. I think that we both knew what he was thinking: that Selena must have done something to his father. He told me before that he didn’t think that she had the capacity to kill, but I didn’t know how much I actually believed that. And even if she didn’t kill Enzo’s father, she still may have done something horrible to him to keep him quiet about my existence to the Alpha King. Maybe he was even in that same strange cabin that she kept me in.
Finally, Enzo responded. “I… I think she did do something,” he said quietly as his thumb rubbed the back of my hand absentmindedly. “I’m not sure what. And I hate to admit this, but… We need him. I think Lewis is letting the power get to his head, and know my father would want to at least try to help our neighboring towns. He’s not a monster.”
I nodded, staring down at our intertwined hands. His fingers were cool and rough from years of playing hockey. I turned his hand over to inspect his palm, running my finger along his callouses.
“Are you going to go back for him?” I asked.
As those words came out of my mouth, I already felt myself begin to choke up because deep down, I knew the answer. Enzo would have to go back to rescue his father. Not only did he need to save his father for his pack’s sake, but he also had to bring him back to save our neighboring towns from the Crescents. There was still no telling how much destruction had been caused by the Crescents’ hands, and we needed the help of the Fullmoons. Even though our new little pack had somehow managed to defeat the Crescents on our campus and drive them away, we couldn’t handle all of the other towns on our own. By now, for all we knew the Crescents had hundreds, thousands of rogues to use like pawns. For all we knew, they were already spreading across the country like wildfire.
Enzo sat up, and without a word, pulled me closer. I felt a sob catch in my throat as I climbed into his lap, wrapping my legs around him and burying my face in his neck.
He held me like that for a long time, rocking me back and forth while I cried. The room began to darken around us as the sun went down outside, but I didn’t stop crying for a long time.
Finally, after what could have been hours, the tears wouldn’t come anymore. I pulled away, letting Enzo brush a few stray strands of hair out of my eyes.
“I’m really sorry, Nina,” he said gently, his hand lingering on my cheek. “I really am. I wish I could stay.”
I stared down at my lap, nodding. “It’s okay. I know why you need to go.”
“But Nina…” Enzo said, placing his hand under my chin and tilting my face up so I met his soft gaze. “I promise I’ll come back as soon as I can. You don’t need to worry, and I’m not gonna leave you. Okay?”
I nodded. Another, final tear squeezed out of my eye and rolled down my cheek. Enzo caught it on his finger before pulling me closer and kissing me deeply