Marked by the Vampire Page 21

“I’ve been working to bring that bastard down for a long time,” Case continued. “Hell, you and I—we even crossed paths before when I was tailing him. I just got lucky because you didn’t remember me when we met again at Purgatory.”

No, no, she didn’t remember him…

My mother? The senator killed my mother?

“I’m so sorry,” Chloe whispered. “I didn’t know…not until Case came to me and told me. I didn’t know, I swear!”

She was going to be sick. Rage and pain and horror were swirling within Olivia.

She stumbled back, but Case caught her shoulders and stopped her retreat. “David got access to the senator’s research. The senator trusts that wolf too damn much.” He huffed out a breath. “You have to watch your emotions—they’re the trigger for your power. When you lose control, that’s when your magic is at its strongest. That’s what the senator wants.”

For her to break? She tried to steady her racing heartbeat. “Where is the senator?”

Case glanced over at Chloe.

“Where is he?” Olivia demanded again.

“We don’t know,” Case confessed. “That’s why we’re here. We thought…we thought he’d be coming after you.”

She pulled away from him and forced herself to look at Shane. “I guess there’s a lot of that going around.” Her chin lifted. “Shane, when you first sensed werewolves in the building, did you think it was David and his pack—coming for me? Coming to get the bait in your trap?”

His gaze held hers. “I knew it was Case.”

“But you’d hoped it was the others?” She rushed back to the window. Stared down at the city below. “That’s the whole point, right? Everyone is using me, manipulating me, and I’m so blind that I didn’t realize it.” Her laughter came then, and it was bitter. “I was supposed to be so good at reading people. I mean, I do it for a living! And the ones closest to me…” She looked at Chloe. At Shane. Pain tightened within her. “The ones closest to me deceived me the best.”

Shane hurried toward her. “I didn’t deceive you. I got you out of the Para Unit. You wanted to be free, and I made that happen.”

She wasn’t free. “Sometimes, you don’t see the cage.”

“The senator has to be stopped! David has to be caught or killed. It’s not safe for the humans if they’re still out there, plotting. It’s not safe for you.” He leaned in toward her, and she could see the fury swirling in his eyes. “I will do anything and everything to make your world safe, don’t you see that? I would do—” He broke off and his gaze jerked toward the window. “No!” Shane yelled.


Bullets blasted through the window, shattering the glass. Fast. One after the other. Shane grabbed her, pushed Olivia behind his body even as he faced the window, and she heard the terrible thudding impact as the bullets sank into him.

Chloe cried out as she was hit. Olivia’s gaze flew to her, and she saw her friend jerking like a marionette on a string.

Case went down, crashing into the coffee table even as blood soaked his shirt.

The bullets kept firing. Shane was on his feet, still protecting Olivia even as his body shuddered. Then—


The gunfire had stopped.

She wasn’t hit. Shane…

He fell. His body slammed onto the floor, and he took her down with him. Olivia struggled with him and managed to roll him to the side. “Shane!”

There was blood everywhere, bullet wounds all over him. Her hand pressed to his chest.

That was when she realized there was a bullet in his heart.


Olivia’s head turned at that faint whisper. Chloe had tried to heave herself up a few precious inches. Blood soaked her shirt. “G-go…”

She was supposed to just leave them? Hell, no.

“S-silver in m-me…” Chloe shuddered. “Bet…w-wood…in v-vamp…”

A wooden bullet to the heart would put a vampire down. Freeze him, as if he were dead. She had to get the bullet out of Shane.

“C-coming…h-hear them…” Chloe fell back. “Run…”

She couldn’t leave them!

She wouldn’t leave Shane. Her fingers pushed into his wound, the wound right over his heart. She gasped as she did it, terrified, but Shane didn’t move at all. Her fingers slipped, fumbled, and she tried to find that bullet. If she could get it out, then he’d wake up. He’d heal. Then they could grab the others and all get out of there.

If she could get the bullet… “Come on, come on…”

She heard the thunder of footsteps. So close. Right outside of the apartment?

Sucking in a deep breath, Olivia pushed her fingers even deeper into Shane’s chest. She wouldn’t think about touching his heart. She’d only think about saving him. Saving them all. She had to get the bullet out.

The door crashed in. She looked up as men in black rushed into the room. All of the men wore ski masks. She didn’t know if they were humans or werewolves—they were in human form, though, and all armed with guns.

“Get away from him!”

That voice…she knew that voice. It was Donald Quick’s voice.

He rushed right past his daughter’s fallen form and put a gun to Olivia’s head. “Get away from the vamp. Leave him or you die now!”

He had his gun aimed right between her eyes. “L-liar,” Olivia said. “You want me alive.” She almost had the bullet. Almost. “That’s the whole point of all this, right, Senator Quick?”

He stiffened. What, had the guy thought she wouldn’t recognize him? Or that she wouldn’t call his bluff?

“You’re right,” he said softly. “I won’t kill you.” Then he backed away from her. Grabbed his daughter and jerked her upright. He put his gun to Chloe’s head. “But what do you think will happen if I fire a silver bullet into her at point-blank range?”

Chloe’s eyes were closed. She sagged in his hold.

“She’s your daughter!” Olivia shouted.

“She turned on me. Who the hell do you think has been tipping off the FBI bastards? She turned on me…when all I wanted to do was help her.” Rage blasted through his words. “Now get away from that vamp, or she dies!”

Olivia’s fingers slowly slipped out of the wound. She put her hands behind her back as she rose.

“Good. Damn good.” He dropped Chloe, as if she didn’t matter at all. “Now, come on because we’re leaving.” He motioned with the gun. A “come here” gesture.

She didn’t go anywhere. “Did you kill my mother?”

He tensed.

“You did.” He’d been at her mother’s funeral. Hugging Olivia. Comforting her. Rage pulsed through her. “You sonofabitch!” She lunged for him. “I wish—”

He shot her.

Olivia’s words ended in a strangled gasp as she looked down at her body.

“Can’t have you making any wishes, not just yet.”

She saw the blood blooming near her stomach.

“Not fatal, not yet.”

Her breath choked out as she staggered toward him. But one of his men rushed forward and shoved a needle into Olivia’s neck.

“Got you,” the man whispered. Her head turned as the world started to get foggy and dark, and she found herself staring into David’s eerie silver eyes.

“I wish…” Olivia whispered, trying to force her words out. “I wish…”

She slumped to the floor.

And the bullet she’d hidden slipped from her fingers.


“Olivia!” Shane roared her name even as he sucked in a deep gulp of air. He lurched to his feet and slipped in blood. His blood.

Damn the bastards.

His gaze flew around the room. Case was on the floor, not moving at all. There was no sign of Olivia or Chloe. He inhaled, trying to pull in their scents and—got you.

He whirled back toward the window. The glass was broken, courtesy of the bullets and the sniper ass**les who’d fired them. He looked below. Sure enough, there were black SUVs out there on the street. Olivia was being loaded into one.

I promised to protect her.

He jumped right through the glass. He plummeted down, down, and when he slammed into the ground, his knees dented the concrete.

“Kill him!” He heard the shouted order as he pushed to his feet. Men started firing at him again but, this time, they missed his heart.

He grabbed one of the fools. Yanked the guy in front of his body, used him as cover—and Shane sank his fangs into the man’s throat.

He needed blood. He’d take everything from the bastards who’d tried to take Olivia.

When more bullets flew through the air, he dropped his prey. Shane went after the others. He’d take them all out. One by one.

A black SUV slammed into him. Shane hurtled through the air and hit the side of the building.

The SUV backed up.

Shane tried to shove to his feet. His legs were broken.

The SUV raced away.

And the men with guns closed in.

“I guess you’re about to lose your head, vampire,” one of the men yelled. “When we shoot you in your heart and you freeze up, do you think you’ll still feel it when we saw off your head?”

Shane’s hands flattened on the concrete. “Will you…feel it…when my friend…shoves his claws…into you?”


Connor attacked. Shane had smelled him, had known that back-up had come to help him. Connor ran up behind the men and sliced with his claws. One down. Two.

Then Duncan hurtled from the shadows. He took out two more men.

Pate rushed to Shane’s side. “Damn, man, you look like hell.” Pate put his wrist to Shane’s mouth. “Haven’t we done this shit before?”

Shane sank his teeth into Pate’s wrist. The blood hit him, a punch of power, but it was nothing like the power boost he got from Olivia.


Shane shoved Pate’s wrist away. He pushed his bones back into place and ignored the agony that pierced him.

He forced himself to rise. Shane took a step and managed to stay upright. Mostly. “They…took her.”

“And we’ll get her back,” Pate promised. “She was bleeding so—”

“I’ve got her scent,” Connor said at once as he dropped the guard he’d just clawed.

Shane staggered past them.

“You don’t need her scent to track her,” Pate said, coming up behind him. “Shane took her blood. There’s nowhere she can go that he can’t ever follow.”

Nowhere. I’d follow them to hell in order to get her back. “Case…is upstairs.” He hardly recognized his own growling voice. “Help him.” Then he looked back at Pate. “And try to…keep up, with me.”

You’ll die for this, Senator Quick.

And Shane would make sure that it wouldn’t be an easy death.

Olivia was his. Body, soul, heart. No one hurt her and lived.

The darkness that he kept chained so tightly took over and Shane started his hunt.


They’d gagged her. Tied up her hands. Bound her feet. And the senator kept a gun at her head as the SUV hurtled down the street.

“Are you angry, Olivia?” Donald asked as he leaned in close to her. “Are you afraid?”

She was pissed, and he should be the one who was afraid.

“I know all of your secrets. I know more than you can imagine.”

She hated him. This, this was the man who’d attended all of her graduation ceremonies? Who’d been such a solid supporter in her life over the years?

He was using me, all along.

“Your father was a full-blood djinn. Your mother didn’t realize that, though, not until it was too late. I actually think that part of her was always afraid of you. Afraid of what you might be.”

No, no, her mother had loved her.

“She saw your father die. Vampires came after him…they like the taste of djinn blood, you see. The blood of a paranormal always gives them more power, but a djinn’s blood—that’s something quite special to them.”

My vampire will come after me.

“The vampires came in full force and attacked your father. But he fought them. Took out most of those fanged bastards, slaughtered them, right in front of your mother. You were there, too, screaming.” His lips twisted in a stark smile that was revealed by the faint light in the SUV. “At least, that’s what she told me.”

The SUV hit a pothole and the whole vehicle lurched.

She squeezed her eyes shut because she thought he might shoot her then. How easy would it be for that gun to discharge if the SUV hit another pothole that hard?

“Better move this,” Donald murmured. “Don’t want to accidently destroy all that magic.”

That was all she was to him. Magic. Power.

But her eyes opened and she saw that he’d lowered the gun.

“Do you remember how he died?” Now he sounded curious.

Olivia shook her head.

“It was her,” Donald whispered. “He’d fought the vamps. He was weak, and she killed him. Your mother thought he was evil. She’d seen what his wishes could do…watched as he twisted desires and played with the lives of humans. Your father—all djinn enjoy torment. Your mother knew he’d make you just like him, so she had to act.”

Tears slipped down her cheeks. She wanted his words to be nothing more than lies but…

Prev Next
Romance | Vampires | Fantasy | Billionaire | Werewolves | Zombies