On a nightstand in a teenager’s room, a glass vase filled with violets leans precariously against a wall. The only thing saving the vase from a thousand-piece death on the hardwood floor is the groove in the nightstand’s surface that catches the bottom of vase, and of course the wall itself. The violets, nearly a week old, droop in the light of a waning gibbous moon. Wrinkled petals are already piling up on the floor between the nightstand and the wall, and a girl only six days sixteen stares at the dying bouquet from her bed.

Grimes believed in what he did, with no doubts. Though he was older than me by over a decade, I suddenly felt old. Some things mark your soul, not in years but in blood and pain and selling off parts of yourself to get the bad guys, until you finally look in the mirror and aren’t sure which side you’re on anymore. There comes a point when having a badge doesn’t make you the good guy, it just makes you one of the guys. I needed to be one of the good guys, or what the hell was I doing?

Maybe because I knew Haze and Kate so well by then the passage leapt out at me, clear and sharp as diamond.

“My love for Linton is like the foliage in the woods: time will change it, I’m well aware, as winter changes the trees. My love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath…He’s always,
always in my mind: not as a pleasure any more than I am always a pleasure to myself, but as my own being.

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