Evernight Page 31

“Bianca.” His whisper was soft against my skin. Lucas’s lips were brushing against the hollow of my throat. “We should stop.”

“I don’t want to stop.”

“Out here—we shouldn’t get—carried away—”

“You don’t have to stop.” I kissed his hair and his forehead. All I could think about was that he belonged to me now, me and no one else.

When our lips met again, the kiss was different—charged, almost desperate. Lucas and I were breathing faster, not able to speak. Nothing in the world existed except him and the thrumming deep inside me, the one that insisted he was mine, mine, mine.

His fingers brushed the slim strap of my dress, until it slipped down my shoulder, exposing the very top curve of my breast. Lucas traced the line from my ear to my shoulder with his thumb. I wanted him to go further, to touch me in every way I needed to be touched. My mind was clouded, almost like I couldn’t think at all; there was only my body and what it demanded from me. I knew what I had to do, even if I couldn’t imagine it yet. I knew.

Stop, I told myself. But Lucas and I were past stopping. I needed him, all of him, now.

I took his face in my hands and pressed my lips softly to his mouth, his chin, and his neck. I could see his pulse throbbing just beneath the skin, and then the hunger was too much to hold back.

I bit into Lucas’s throat, hard. I heard him gasp in pain and shock, but in that moment the blood rushed over my tongue. The thick metallic taste of it spread through me like fire, hot and uncontrollable and dangerous and beautiful. I swallowed, and the feel of Lucas’s blood in my throat was sweeter than anything else I’d ever known.

Lucas tried to push away from me, but he was already weak. As he began to slump backward, I caught him in my arms so that I could keep drinking deeply. I felt as though I were drawing his soul into me along with his blood. We had never been closer than this.

Mine, I thought. Mine.

Then Lucas went completely limp. He’d passed out. That realization crashed into me like a wave of cold water, shocking me out of the trance.

I gasped and let Lucas go. He fell bonelessly to the floor of the gazebo with a thud. The wide gash my teeth had left in his throat was dark and wet in the moonlight, glistening like spilled ink. A small stream of blood trickled across the wood and pooled around a small silver star that had fallen from my hair.

“Help,” I choked out. It was hardly more than a whisper. My lips were still sticky and hot with Lucas’s blood. “Somebody, please. Help!”

I stumbled down the gazebo steps, desperate to find someone, anyone. My parents would be furious—Mrs. Bethany would be a thousand times worse—but somebody had to help Lucas. “Is anyone out there?”

“What is wrong with you?” Courtney stepped out of the woods, clearly annoyed. Her lacy white dress was rumpled, and I could see her date standing behind her; apparently I’d interrupted a hook-up session. “Wait—on your mouth—is that blood?”

“Lucas.” I was too deep in shock to even try to explain. “Please. Help Lucas.”

Courtney tossed her long blond hair and stepped up into the gazebo to see Lucas lying there, his throat ripped open. She breathed, “Oh, my God.” Then she turned back to me with a smug smile. “About time you grew up and became a vampire like the rest of us.”

Chapter Eight

“DID I KILL LUCAS? IS HE OKAY?” I SOBBED. I couldn’t stop crying. My mother’s arm was around my shoulder; I blindly let her lead me away from the gazebo. My father had run ahead with Lucas’s unconscious body in his arms. Some of the teachers were nearby, making sure none of the other students realized there was a disturbance. “Mom, what did I do?”

“Lucas’s alive.” Her voice had never sounded gentler. “He’ll make it.”

“Are you sure?”

“Pretty sure.” We went up the stone steps, and I nearly stumbled over each one. My entire body was shaking so hard that I could barely walk. Mom stroked my hair, which had tumbled loose from its braids and hung limply around my face. “Honey, go up to our rooms, okay? Wash your face. Calm down.”

I shook my head. “I want to be with Lucas.”

“He won’t even know you’re there.”

“Mom. Please.”

She started to refuse, but then I saw her realize that there was no point in arguing. “Come on.”

My father had taken Lucas to the carriage house. When I first walked in, I wondered why there was an apartment in the carriage house, paneled with black-stained wood and hung with sepia-tinted photographs in old oval frames. Then I remembered that this was where Mrs. Bethany lived. I was too shaken up even to be afraid of her. When I tried to push into the bedroom to see Lucas, Mom shook her head. “Wash your face with some cold water. Take a few deep breaths. Pull yourself together, honey. Then we’ll talk.” Smiling unevenly, she added, “Everything’s all right. You’ll see.”

My clammy, trembling hands fumbled with the glass doorknob to the bathroom. As soon as I glimpsed my face in the mirror, I realized why my mother had kept telling me to wash my face. My lips were stained with Lucas’s blood. A few drops had been smeared across my cheeks. Instantly I turned on the taps, desperate to clean away the evidence of what I’d done—but as the cool water began flowing over my fingers, I found myself looking at the bloodstains more closely. My lips were so red, and they were still swollen from our kisses.

Slowly, I traced the outline of my lips with the tip of my tongue. I could taste Lucas’s blood, and it was as if he were as close to me in that moment as he had been in my arms.

So this is what it means, I thought. All my life, my parents had told me that someday blood would be more than blood, more than just something from the butcher’s shop they gave me with my dinner. I had never been able to comprehend what they meant. Now I understood. In some ways, it really was just like my first kiss with Lucas; my body had known what I needed and wanted long before my mind could even guess.

Then I thought about Lucas, leaning back for my kiss and trusting me completely. Guilt made me start crying again, and then I splashed water on my face and the back of my neck. It took several minutes of deep breaths before I could walk out of the bathroom again.

Mrs. Bethany’s bed was a carved black monstrosity, with spiral columns that supported the canopy overhead. It was obviously centuries old. Unconscious in the center of the bed, Lucas was as pale as the bandage covering his throat, but he was breathing.

Prev Next
Free Novels Read Online | Read Wuxia Novel | Read Xianxia Novel