Cruel King (Royal Elite #0) - Rina Kent



You may be noble, but stay away from King.

* * *

This is the last place I should be.

Alcohol, drunk teenagers, and thumping music.

A party.

Not to be dramatic, although I probably am, this place is like my worst nightmare wrapped in super-expensive watered down alcohol.

Now, I’m not that much of a fun-ruiner, although my best friend Dan would say otherwise.

Spoiler alert, don’t believe anything Dan says. He’s into drama and all that jazz.

But I promised him I’d attend one party before the summer starts. Since Dan is part of the football team, I expected him to take me to their usual thing — not that I know what that is, but I had an idea it’d be in some posh house in London.

However, the sneaky wanker chose the party. AKA the mother of all freaking parties in Royal Elite.

When Dan and I walked inside, I had to double-check and see if we were somehow trespassing into the queen’s holiday mansion and if I should tell her majesty that I saw the drunk captain of the rugby team piss in her pool.

To say the place is huge would be like saying the Vikings are tiny. Okay, that was lame, but I kind of insert the Vikings in any similes I make.

Golden arcs decorate the entrance all the way to the massive lounge area. The vaulted ceilings and the sweeping stairs only add to how ridiculously grandiose this place is — even for Royal Elite’s level. Jeez. There are even butlers serving drunk teenagers more drinks than they need.

I mean, I come from money. Scratch that. Dad is rich, I’m not. However, this is on a whole different level. Even for me.

When Dan said it’s party night — right before the bugger sneaked off — I thought we’ll crash in one of the popular ‘royals’ houses.

We’ll drink their rich liquor, try to pretend that we belong to the same school that has the future prime minister and parliament members in the making and then piss off to nurse a hangover.

Dan forgot to mention a tiny detail about the location of the party.

It’s in the middle of freaking nowhere.

I stopped following the twists and turns Dan took with his car the moment we were out of London and no road signs came into view.

For a moment, I thought Dan was taking us to some gypsy party.

Well, this sure as hell isn’t a gypsy party.

The mansion is hidden behind tall pine trees on top of a hill — no kidding. The owner is either way too private or way too gothic.

Or both.

Aside from the attendees’ cars, there’s nothing in sight. Now that I think about it, this is the perfect opportunity to mass murder everyone.

I can totally see this as the opening scene of a horror film.

You need to stop watching all those gory films. I can almost hear Dad scold in my mind. Oh, right. He’s not Dad. He’s Father.

That should summarise my relationship with Lord Clifford.

He might or might not kill me for coming to this party without his permission.

One more reason why I followed Dan’s demonic plots.

I sip from my second drink. I had one shot with Dan as soon as we arrived and now, I'm walking around with this cocktail. There's barely a burn at the end, but I have a high tolerance, so this is nothing.

I need a distraction from all the scene around me. I can’t believe Dan buggered off — probably to go shag. Worst wingman ever.

The entire school is gathered here. Some sway to the loud, off-beat music. Outside, a few of the rugby team cannonball into the kidney-shaped pool — that has piss in it. Others howl as they play a drinking competition. I wish I had the guts to participate.

But then again, nothing is worth jeopardising my position in the school. I’m part of the invisible folk. You know the type. Those whom no one actually cares if they miss a class or two — or an entire year. And I’d like to remain that way, thank you very much.

Invisibility is a cool superpower that allows me to breeze through without any bullshit or drama.

I should’ve probably chosen a lesser noticeable best friend than Dan. To my defence, when I found out Daniel’s popularity, he’d already pasted himself as my wingman with super glue.

Even with his popularity, I’m still invisible enough that his harem of girls don’t notice me when they’re hitting on him.

Extra Royal Elite’s students are still wearing their pristine uniforms with red ties