Completely Consumed (Addicted To You, Book Eight)
Author:Covington, Lucy

“I shouldn’t have said that.”

 

“Fuck you.” He tried to turn away, but I grabbed his arm.

 

“Gil, I’m sorry, dude.”

 

He glared at me, and then the unshed tears finally let loose and ran down his cheeks. I had never felt so low in my life as I did right at that moment.

 

“It’s a disease, asshole,” he said, choking on his words.

 

“I know. I know.”

 

He wiped his sleeve across his eyes. “Look, I know I’m a piece of shit. Do you think I need you telling me? You think I didn’t know it already?”

 

“You’re not a piece of shit. You’re my best friend.”

 

“What does that say about you? A junkie is your best friend?”

 

I had to smile a little at that. “I said I was sorry. I got mad. I’m having a bad time, too. The fucking FBI came to my apartment and threatened me a few minutes ago.

 

You’re not the only one with big problems.”

 

Gil’s eyes widened and his expression turned from anger to concern in an instant.

 

“You’re serious?”

 

“Yeah.” I nodded, and in the second, it hit me hard as well. The FBI. The Federal Bureau of Investigations was making me a target. The government was involved and they would screw me good. My life could be over before it even started.

 

“What happened?” he said. “Tell me everything.”

 

“Let’s walk,” I said, taking a deep breath. “I need some air.”

 

“Let’s go down the bridge,” he said. “You know the one?”

 

I laughed, thinking how I’d looked to see if he was sleeping under it not that long ago. Of course, Gil was blissfully unaware of that fact. “Yeah, I remember that bridge.”

 

“It’s not too far from here and the ocean breeze will do you good,” he said confidently.

 

“Is it really a smart idea to go back to that place? Didn’t you used to get high there and everything?”

 

“That’s even better. I need to remember how low I can fall if I fuck up again.”

 

So we started walking toward the bridge, and I told him everything, from the beginning. How I quit my old gym and started the new one. Quarry. The Slaughterhouse. The drugs and constant pressure to use them and fight every day. My shitty contract with the UFF.

 

It felt good to tell it all to someone who I knew I could trust, someone who wouldn’t judge me—someone who knew me.

 

And it felt even better to have my best friend back in his right state of mind. I’d always been able to go to Gil for advice. He was like my older brother, I looked up to him. And now that he was finally healthy, I could go to him again.

 

By the time we arrived at the bridge, I was finishing the story. I left out the part about Lindsay, because bringing girl problems into it was only going to further complicate things. But I did tell him what the agents had said to me about possible jail time and the destruction of my life and reputation.

 

Finally, we walked down under the bridge. Gilbert was quiet, looking at the dirty cardboard, empty bottles and cans, even a few old syringes littering the area. He shook his head, his eyes squinting with some sort of discomfort.

 

“Can you believe what I used to do? That I used to sleep under here, pissing myself, shooting up, not caring if I lived or died?”

 

I watched him, wondering what he was feeling. He seemed to think it had been years and years since he’d done such things, but the reality was that it hadn’t even been a month.

 

Still, he looked good. He sounded good. He sounded right. I wasn’t going to question it. Not now, at least.

 

“I figured some day I might find you lying here, dead,” I told him.

 

He glanced at me. “It makes me sick to hear you say that.”

 

“Sorry, maybe I shouldn’t have said it like that.”

 

“No, no.” He inhaled deeply. “I need to hear it. I need to keep reminding myself where I could end up if I’m not careful.”

 

I put a hand on his shoulder. “I’m proud of you, Gil. So proud—you have no idea.”

 

He smiled, quickly. “So, enough about me,” he said, turning and facing me. “We need to figure out what you’re doing to do next.”

 

“That’s what I was trying to figure out.”

 

“Do you want one junkie’s stupid opinion?”

 

“Don’t say that, man.”

 

He laughed. “I’m serious. You want my opinion or not?”

 

“Of course I want your opinion.”

 

His expression grew intense, his smile faded. “You have to work with the Feds.

 

You have to do it.”

 

I stared at him, shocked. “I don’t know if I can.”

 

“Well, then you’re going to have to get really good at staring at walls, because when they’re done with you—you’ll be spending a lot of days in a cell, JB.”

 

My insides went cold. “That’s encouraging.”

 

“I’ve been in the system. I know how it works and I know what these people can do if they want to make an example of you. Don’t fight them,” Gil said. He’d never sounded so sober as he did right then. “This isn’t the time to fight, JB. This is the time to surrender.”

 

 

 

 

 

LINDSAY

 

 

I felt better as soon as I arrived outside the science office. Right when I got there, Carter ushered me inside and then shut the door behind us.