You can't let him get away with this! Penny shrieked. Caine wasn’t having it. You stupid witch, he yelled back. No one told you to let it go that far!He was mine for the day, Penny hissed. She pressed a rag to her nose, which had started bleeding again.He tore his own eyes out. What did you think Quinn would do? What do you think Albert will do now? He bit savagely at his thumb, a nervous habit.I thought you were the king!Caine reacted without thinking. He swung a hard backhand at her face. The blow did not connect, but the thought did. Penny flew backward like she’d been hit by a bus. She smacked hard against the wall of the office.The blow stunned her and Caine was in her face before she could clear her thoughts.Turk came bursting in, his gun leveled. What’s happening?Penny tripped, Caine said.Penny’s freckled face was white with fury.Don’t, Caine warned. He tightened an invisible grip around her head and twisted it back at an impossible angle.Then Caine released her.Penny panted and glared. But no nightmare seized Caine’s mind. You’d better hope Lana can fix that boy, Penny.You’re getting soft. Penny choked out the words.Being king isn’t about being a sick creep, Caine said. People need someone in charge. People are sheep and they need a big sheepdog telling them what to do and where to go. But it doesn’t work if you start killing the sheep.You’re scared of Albert. Penny followed it with a mocking laugh.I’m scared of no one, Caine said. Least of all you, Penny. You live because I let you live. Remember that. The kids out there? He waved his hand toward the window, vaguely indicating the population of Perdido Beach. Those kids out there hate you. You don’t have a single friend. Now get out of here. I don’t want to see you back here in my presence until you’re ready to crawl to me and beg my forgiveness.
Michael Grant