Magic Rises Chapter 10

I turned and looked at Hugh. He sat on his throne, left arm bent, the elbow propped on the armrest, leaning his head on the curled fingers of his hand. Comfortable, are we?

I'd been anticipating this moment for most of my life. Now it was here and I had no clue what to do with it. Anxiety rushed through me in an icy flood. In my head I'd always imagined this meeting would involve bloody swords and stabbing. The lack of stabbing was deeply perplexing.

"Tell me, what do you do if there is no throne handy? Do you carry a portable model with you, or do you just commandeer whatever is handy, like lawn chairs and bar stools?"

"Your father once told me that a dog sitting on a throne is still a dog, while a king in a crumbling rocking chair is still a king."

Nice choice of words, considering his official title was preceptor of the Iron Dogs. "My father?"

Hugh sighed. "Come on. I saw the sword, I walked through what remained after Erra's destruction, and I found your flowers where you and the shapeshifters fought the Fomorians a year ago. I felt the magic coming off them. Don't insult my intelligence."

It was like that, then. "Fine. What do you want?"

Hugh spread his arms. "What do you want, that's the question. You came here, to my castle."

"That insulting-intelligence remark goes both ways. You set a trap, lured me across the ocean into it, and now I'm here. If you wanted small talk, we could've done that in Atlanta."

Hugh smiled. Your teeth are too perfect, Hugh. I can totally help you with that.

I pretended to study the Golden Fleece. These were just opening feints. Soon he would get serious and go in for the kill, one way or the other. The fleece looked in too great a shape to be centuries old.

"Did you really kill a ram with gold wool?"

"Gods, no. It's synthetic," he said.


"We took a ram pelt, coated it in magic to keep it from burning, and dipped it in gold. The real trick was getting the proportion of gold and silver right. I wanted to keep the flexibility of gold, but it's so heavy the individual hairs kept breaking, and too much silver made it stiff. In the end we went with a gold-copper alloy."

"Why go through all this trouble?"

"Because kingdoms are built on legends," Hugh said. "When the hunters are old and gray, they will still talk about how they went to Colchis and hunted for the Golden Fleece."

"So you want your own kingdom?" Aiming high.

He shrugged his massive shoulders. "Perhaps."

"Is my father aware of your plans? History says he doesn't like to share."

"I have no taste for the purple cloak," Hugh said. "Only for the laurel wreath."

The Roman emperors had assumed the purple cloak as the sign of their office, while victorious Roman generals would ride through Rome in triumph with laurel wreaths held over their heads. Hugh didn't want to be the emperor. He wanted to be the emperor's general.

"What are your plans, Kate? What is it you want?"

"To be left alone." For now.

"You and I both know that won't happen."

I touched the Golden Fleece. The tiny metal hairs felt soft under my fingers.

"I killed Voron," Hugh said quietly.

Cold washed over me. My mind served up a memory: the man I called my father in a bed, his stomach ripped open. A phantom odor, putrid, thick, and bitter, filled my nostrils. It had haunted me through the years in my sleep.

I turned.

The man sitting on the throne was no longer relaxed. The arrogance and the good-natured mirth had vanished. A somber remorse remained, mixed with a resignation born from old grief.

"Do you want a medal?"

"I didn't plan to do it," Hugh said. "I expected it would eventually come to that since Roland wanted him dead, but that day I didn't come to fight. I wanted to talk. I wanted to know why he'd left me. He was like a father to me. I went on an errand for a few months, and when I returned, he was gone and Roland told me to kill him. I never understood why."

I knew why. "Took you a while to track him down."

"Sixteen years. He lived in this small house in Georgia. I walked up to it. He met me on the porch, sword out." Old unresolved anger sharpened his voice. "He said, 'Let's see what you've learned.' Those were the last words he ever said to me. He'd raised me since I was seven, and then left without a word. No explanation. Nothing. I looked for him for sixteen years. He was like a father to me, and that's what I got. 'Let's see what you've learned.'"

I should've been furious, but for some reason I wasn't. Maybe because I knew he was telling the truth. Maybe because Voron left me just like that, without the much-needed explanations. Maybe because things I had learned about him since his death had made me doubt everything he'd ever said to me. Whatever the case, I felt only a hollow, crushing sadness.

How touching. I understood my adoptive father's killer. Maybe after this was over, Hugh's head and I could sing "Kumbaya" together by the fire.

He was waiting. This was an awful lot of sharing. Voron had always warned me that Hugh was smart. He planned strategies for fun. This conversation was a part of some sort of plan. He had to have an angle, but what was the angle? Was he trying to see how easily I could be provoked? Hearing him talk about Voron was like ripping an old wound open with a rusty nail, but Voron would tell me to get over it. Hugh wanted to talk. Fine. I'd use it against him.

"How did you kill him?" There. Nice and neutral.

Hugh shrugged. "He was slower than I remembered."

"Too many years away from Roland." Without frequent exposure to my father's magic, Voron's rejuvenation had slowed down.

"Probably. I caught him with a diagonal to the gut. It was an ugly wound. He should've died on the spot, but he held on."

"Voron was tough." Come on. Show me your cards, Hugh. What's the worst that can happen?

"I carried him into the house and laid him on the bed, and then I sat next to him and tried to heal him. It didn't take. Still, I thought I'd put him back together. He pulled a short sword from under the pillow and stabbed himself in the stomach."

That was Voron for you. Even dying, he managed to take away Hugh's victory.

"He passed in half an hour. I waited in the house for two days, and then I finally left."

"Why didn't you bury him?"

"I don't know," Hugh said. "I should've, but I wasn't sure if he had somebody, and if he did, they deserved to know how he died. It shouldn't have been like that. I didn't want it to end like that."

None of us did. Hugh felt betrayed. He must've imagined that he would find the man who'd raised him and get all his questions answered. He must've thought when they fought, it would be a life-and-death contest between equals. Instead he found a stubborn old man who refused to talk to him. It was a hollow, bitter victory and it ate at him for over a decade. He deserved every second of it.

Voron was the god of my childhood. He protected me; he taught me; he made any house a home. No matter what hellhole we found ourselves in, I never worried because he was always with me. If any trouble dared to come our way, Voron would cut us out of it. He was my father and my mother. Later I found out that he might not have loved me with that unconditional love all children need, but I decided I didn't care.

I stood there, looking at the Golden Fleece, and smelled that unforgettable, harsh odor of death I had smelled over a decade ago. It had hit me the moment I walked through the door of our house, and I knew, I right away knew that Voron was dead. I stood in that doorway, dirty and starved, my knife in my hand, while shards of my shattered world fell down around me, and for the first time in my life I was truly scared. I was alone, afraid, and helpless, too terrified to move, too terrified to breathe because every time I inhaled, I smelled Voron's death. That was when I finally understood: death is forever. The man who had taught me that lesson sat less than twenty feet away.

I carefully stomped on that thought before it pulled my sword out for me.

"Where were you?" Hugh asked.

I kept the memories out of my voice. "In the woods. He'd dropped me off in the wilderness three days before."

"Canteen and a knife?" Hugh asked.

"Mm-hm." Canteen and a knife. Voron would drive me off into the woods, hand me a canteen and a knife, and wait for me to make my way home. Sometimes it took days. Sometimes weeks, but I always survived.

"He left me in the Nevada desert once," Hugh said. "I was rationing water like it was gold, and then there was a flash flood during the night. It washed me off the side of the hill and into the ravine. I almost drowned. The canteen saved me-there was enough air in it to hold me over when I went under the water. So I crawl out of the desert, half-dead, and he looks at me and says, 'Follow.' And then the bastard gets into his truck and rides off. I had to run seven miles to town. If I could've lifted my arms, I would've strangled him."

I knew the feeling. I'd plotted Voron's death before, but I also loved him. As long as he was alive, the world had an axis and wouldn't spin out of control, and then he died and it did. I wondered if Hugh had loved him in his own way. He must have. Only love can turn into that much frustration. Still didn't explain why he was in a sharing mood.

"I found his body."

"I'm sorry," Hugh said. Either he was a spectacular actor or this was genuine regret. Probably both.

Screw it. "You should be. You ended my childhood."

"Was it a good childhood?"

"Does it matter? It was the only one I had, and he was the only father I ever knew."

Hugh rubbed his face. Voron was the only father he knew as well, and he'd left Hugh to rescue my mother and me. I suppose in a strange way that made us even.

"Did he ever tell you why?" Hugh asked.

"Why what?"

"The man I knew had a steel core. He would never have betrayed the man he'd sworn to protect. The Voron I knew wouldn't steal his master's wife and their child and run away with them. He wasn't a traitor."

"You really don't know?"


It had to be a lie. Roland would've told him. "Why don't you ask him?"

"Because it hurts Roland."

Let's poke a wasp's nest with a stick and see what comes out. "Afraid your commander and chief will do away with you?"

Hugh leaned forward. "No. I don't want to cause him more pain."

Was that genuine or was he playing me? Fine. Let's play, Hugh.

I came closer and sat sideways in the smaller throne, my back against the armrest. "How much do you know about my mother's magic?"

"Not much," Hugh said. "Roland was unpredictable when it came to Kalina. We all maintained some distance."

Funny how he kept calling my father Roland. He knew his real name, but he wasn't sure if I did, so he was being careful.

"She was a really powerful enchantress in the classic sense of the word. Power of love and suggestion. If she wanted you to love her, you did. You would do anything to make her happy. I think Roland was immune, which probably made him really special to her."

Hugh frowned. "Are you saying . . ."

"I spoke to some people who knew them both. The description was, and I quote, 'She fried him. She had time to do it, and she cooked him so hard, he left Roland for her.'"

Hugh stared at me. Right now he was likely wondering if I had my mother's power and if I could fry him the way she'd fried Voron. Now we were both off-balance. There you go. Two can play that game.

"Do you believe it?"

"I don't know. I wish Voron were around so I could get his take on it, but some asshole showed up at my house and killed him."

A long, lingering howl came from the ravine. The high-pitched song of a wolf on the hunt rolled above the treetops. I stood up on the throne. I couldn't see jack shit. Only the trees.

"Leave them to it," Hugh said. "They're animals; it's what they do. They chase, hunt, and kill."

And just like that the lord of the castle was back.

"Why the hell did you even drag us on this hunt?"

"Because I wanted to talk to you, and they hover around you like bees around a patch of flowers. What do you see in Lennart? Is it power? Or is it safety in numbers? Trying to gather enough bodies to protect yourself?"

"He loves me."

Hugh leaned back and laughed.

I wondered if I was fast enough to stab him. Probably. But the stab would put me very close to him and he would retaliate.

"He is an animal," Hugh said. "Stronger, faster, more capable than most of his kind, but at the core still an animal. I work with them. I know them very well. They are tools to be used. They have emotions, sure, but their urges always override their stunted feelings. Why do you think they make all these complex rules for themselves? Stand this close but not six inches closer or you'll get your throat ripped. Eat after the alpha starts eating, but don't get up when he walks into the room. We don't have these bullshit rules. We don't need them. You know what we have? We have common courtesy. The shapeshifters mimic human behavior much like students mimic a master artist, but they confuse complicated for civilized."

Blah-blah-blah. Please, tell me more about shapeshifters, Grandpa Hugh, because I just have no idea how they think. It's not like I live with five hundred of them and end up sorting through their personal problems every Wednesday at the Pack court hearings.

"For a moment I thought you might be a real human being, but you proved me wrong. Thanks. It will make it so much easier to kill you."

Hugh leaned forward. A strange light danced in his eyes. "Want to give it a shot?"

Anytime. "Why, you want to show me what you've learned?"

"Ooo." Hugh sucked the air in, narrowing his eyes. "Mean. I like mean."

A strange low roar cascaded through the mountains, dying down to an odd note, almost like bleating if the goat making it were predatory and the size of a tiger.

"Damn it." Hugh stood up on his throne. "I told them to stay the hell out of the ravine."

I stood up. To the left the trees shook. Something galloped up the mountain slope straight for us.

"What is it?"

"Ochokochi. Big, vicious, carnivorous, long claws. They like to impale people with their chests."

"They what?"

"They grab you and impale you on their chest. The shapeshifters spooked the herd. Stupid sonsabitches. I asked one thing-one damn thing-and they couldn't do it right. The herd is heading for us. Normally I'd move out of their way."

"But we have the horses." Then I remembered-the path up to the meeting place was narrow and steep. We had seven horses, and getting them out and down the path in time to escape was impossible.

"Exactly. When the ochokochi go mad like this, they slaughter everything with a pulse."

A dull thudding came from below, the sound of many feet stomping in unison. How many of them were there?

Hugh jumped off the throne to the ground. "They're coming straight for us."

I moved left, putting myself between the woods and the corral with the horses. The sound of thudding feet grew, like the roar of a distant waterfall. The horses neighed and paced in the enclosure, testing their tethers.

The trees shuddered.

"Don't let them grab you." Hugh grinned at me. "Ready?"

"No time like the present." I unbuckled the spare saber at my waist, unsheathed it, and dropped the sheath on the grass.

The blackberry bushes at the edge of the clearing tore, and the woods spat a beast into the open. It stood about five feet tall, half-upright like a gorilla or a kangaroo, resting the full weight of its body on two massive hind legs. Long reddish fur reminiscent of chamois dripped from its flanks. Its front limbs, muscular and almost simian in shape, bore long black claws. Its head was goatlike, with a wide forehead and small eyes, but instead of the narrow muzzle, its face ended in powerful predatory jaws designed to shear rather than grind.

What the bloody hell was that thing?

The beast saw us and rocked back, opening its limbs as if for a hug. A sharp, hatchetlike ridge of bone protruded from its chest. Bits of dried crud clung to it, and they looked suspiciously like bloody shreds of someone's flesh.

Go to the Black Sea, meet new people, see beautiful places, get killed by a mutant carnivorous kangaroo goat. One item off my bucket list.

I pulled Slayer from the back sheath. Hugh raised his eyebrows at the two swords but didn't say anything. That's right. Hold any comments and questions till the end.

The creature opened its mouth, baring sharp teeth, and yowled. The terrible sound rolled through the clearing, neither roar nor grunt, but a deep bellow of a creature without power of speech driven by fear and bloodlust.

I swung my sabers, warming up my wrists. Hugh unsheathed his sword. It was a plain European long sword, with a thirty-five-and-a-half-inch blade, a simple cross-guard, and a leather-wrapped hilt. The hilt was long enough for one-handed or two-handed use. The beveled blade shone with a satin finish.

The bushes broke. More ochokochi burst into the open. The leader bellowed again.

Hugh laughed.

The monsters dropped to all fours and charged.

We stepped forward and swung at the same time. I moved left, dodging the charge, and sliced the beast's shoulder. The creature screamed and swiped at me with its claws. I leaned back just enough to avoid it and spun the swords in a practiced butterfly pattern. The bottom blade caught the beast's side; the top sliced at the side of its head. Blood sprayed. The ochokochi reared and crashed down, its legs jerking in violent spasms.

I spun my blades, surrounding myself with a wall of steel. One butterfly on top, one on the bottom. If they could bleed, they should feel pain. Here's hoping they had enough brainpower to keep clear of the thing that hurt them.

A second beast rushed me. I cut. It bellowed in agony, twisted aside, sliced and hurting, and ran off into the woods. Banzai! I didn't have to kill. I just had to hurt them enough to make them flee.

They came at me together, and I wove through the incoming rust-colored bodies, cutting and slashing. They bellowed and roared. I breathed in the aggression they exhaled and lost myself to slicing through muscle and ligaments. I'd done this hundreds of times in practice and in real fights, but no memory and no practice could compare to the pure exhilaration of knowing your life was on the line. One wrong move, one misstep, and they would trample me. I would die impaled or clawed to death. The fear stayed with me, a constant knowledge in the back of my mind, but it didn't paralyze me, it just made everything sharper. I saw the ochokochi with crystal clarity, every strand of hair and every panicked and rage-maddened eye.

Hugh worked next to me. He moved with a smooth, sparse economy, the kind that can't be learned in a dojo or in a mock fight. Hugh swung with an instinctual anticipation, a sixth sense of knowing where to land his strike and how to angle his blade for maximum impact, and when his sword touched flesh, the flesh tore. He cleaved bodies like they were butter, wasting no effort, moving without a pause, as if dancing to a rhythm only he heard. It was like watching my father. They called him Voron because death followed in his wake, the way it followed ravens in the old legends. If Voron was Death's raven, Hugh was its scythe.

We moved in perfect unison. He tossed a body at me, I sliced it, drove one at him, and he finished it with a precise, brutal cut.

More ochokochi splashed against us like a furry wave.

Two beasts descended on me, pounding the ground in tandem, barely two feet of space between them. I had nowhere to go and I couldn't stop both. I reversed the blades and stood.

They came at me, screaming. Twelve yards.

"Kate!" Hugh barked.

Ten. A moment too soon, and they would crush me. A moment too late and my life would be over.



The breath from their mouths spilled over me.

Now. I dropped to my knees and slashed across their forelegs with both swords in a single cut.

Before they tumbled forward, the severed muscles and tendons failing under their weight, I pulled the swords to me and stood up. The two beasts passed on both side of me and crashed behind my back, crippled.

"Damn, that was beautiful!" Hugh shouted, pulling his blade from a shaggy body.

An ochokochi lunged at him, too fast for the sword strike. Hugh swung his left arm. The back of his fist hammered the creature's skull. The ochokochi swayed and fell.

I had to avoid being punched by him at all costs.

There were no beasts within striking range. The wave of ochokochi had broken against us.

The remaining ochokochi fanned out, trying to flank me. I backed away until my spine touched Hugh's. I had no idea how, but I had known with one hundred percent certainty that his back would be there to brace me.

"Getting tired?" Hugh asked.

"I can do this all day."

The lead ochokochi bellowed. If they came at us all at once, we'd have a hell of a time protecting the horses.

Another roaring cry. The ochokochi turned as one and streamed in a rust-colored current to the right, through the bushes and trees away from us.

I exhaled.

"Looks like we dodged a bullet." Hugh grinned.

I surveyed the clearing and the heaps of brown fur dotting it. "Do ochokochi count for the hunt?"


"Damn it. There goes my chance for glory."

"You're out of luck," he said.

I slumped forward, catching my breath, straightened, and pulled a cloth from my pocket. I had to clean my swords.

* * *

After the fight Hugh made no effort to talk. The sharing hour had passed, apparently, and we concentrated on getting the clearing back into shape.

At three o'clock Hugh pulled a horn out of his saddlebag and made a noise that would have made the dead sit up in their graves. Fifteen minutes later teams of shapeshifter hunters began trickling in. Curran and company were second on the scene after the Volkodavi. The brush rustled and the colossal gray lion pushed through it. The leonine lips stretched in a distinctly human grin. If lions could look smug, Curran did.

I raised my eyebrows. Carcasses of dead deer, tur, and goats were piled on Curran's back. He shook, tossing them to the ground, the gray mane flying in the wind, and looked at me. And then at the pile of shaggy red bodies behind me. Hugh and I had dragged them all into a big heap on the edge of the clearing to make space and keep the horses from freaking out.

The lion shrank, and a man straightened in his place. "What the hell is this?"

"Hi, honey." I waved at him from my perch on a rock and kept polishing Slayer with a little cloth.

Curran spun to Hugh. His voice was a snarl. "Did you do this?"

"I can only claim responsibility for half of the kills. The rest belong to your wife . . . fiancee?" Hugh turned to me. "You're not married, right? What is the term?"

Oh, you bastard.

"Consort." Barabas rose behind Curran. "The term is 'Consort.'"

"How quaint." Hugh winked at Curran. "No marriage, no division of property, and no strings attached. Well played, Lennart. Well played."

Curran's eyes went gold. "Stay out of my business."

Hugh smiled. "Heaven forbid. Although you should know that if the hunt had a prize for the most elegant kill, she would've won it." He turned away.

Curran looked at me. He'd never asked me to marry him. It didn't come up. This fact hadn't bothered me until Hugh rubbed our faces in it. Come to think of it, it still didn't bother me.

I slid Slayer into the sheath on my back. "How did the hunt go?"

"Fine," he said.

"Anybody hurt?"


A lean gray wolf padded over and stopped next to Curran. Its body stretched and contorted, and Lorelei stood next to Curran. Nude again. Imagine that.

"It was a most glorious hunt," she said. "Curran is amazing. I've never seen such power. It was . . ."

"I'm sure it was." I waited for him to tell her to move. He didn't. She was standing so close, their hands practically brushed. Neither of them wore clothes, and he didn't tell her to move. He didn't step away. A cold steady anger rose inside me and refused to dissipate. Nudity wasn't a big deal to shapeshifters, but if a naked man stood that close to me, Curran would bite his head off.

I waited for him to react. Nope. Nothing.

"I wish you could've joined us," Lorelei said.

I smiled at her.

Lorelei blinked and took a careful step back.

"I had my own fun right here." I got up and stepped between them. Lorelei shied to the side, letting me pass. Curran made no move toward me. I checked his face. Blank. He was closed off. It felt like a door slammed shut in my face.

Say something. Say you love me. Do something, Curran.

Nothing. Argh.

Behind Curran, now-human Desandra put her hand in the small of her back, pushing her stomach out, and winced. Radomil was standing by her, saying something in a language I couldn't understand. It must've been something funny, because she laughed. And then she subtly glanced to her left, where the Italians were sorting out their clothes. I glanced, too. Gerardo wasn't looking her way. Her face fell.

My voice came out cold. "Your clothes are on that rock, Your Majesty. I folded them for you."

"Thank you," he said, his voice casual.

"Is something wrong?" I asked quietly.

"No." A spark of frustration shone in his eyes and melted. There was my pissy lion. He was up to something. Somehow that didn't make me feel any better.

* * *

The djigits sorted the game and tagged the hooves with different types of dye. We waited for the stragglers while the shapeshifters put on their clothes. The amount of game they had killed was staggering. Dozens of animals had lost their lives. I hoped they had ability to freeze the meat because thinking of all that game going to waste made me ill.

The team winner would have to be declared after the castle staff had a chance to weigh and sort the animals, but the prize catch was painfully obvious: a beautiful mature tur, at least two hundred thirty pounds, its horns like two curved moons. Hugh picked it out of our pile and the djigits made a big show of carrying it around.

"Will the hunter stand up and claim their prize?" Hugh boomed.

Aunt B stepped forward. Hugh bowed and presented her with the glass pitcher containing a plastic bag of panacea. Everyone applauded.

Aunt B smiled and passed the panacea to Andrea. "My gift to my grandchildren."

Relief flashed on Andrea's face. It was there for a mere blink, but I saw it. She hugged the pitcher for the tiniest second before handing it over to Raphael.

Clothes were put back on, horses were freed, and we began our descent to the castle. People around me seemed happier, calmer, satiated.

Curran walked in front of my horse. Lorelei must've sensed it wasn't a good time to test my patience, and she had moved to talk to George behind us. Curran kept walking and I kept riding. Either something had happened on that hunt or he had hatched some sort of demented plan and was now following it.

We didn't speak.

On my right Desandra chatted with Andrea about the hunt.

For the first time in months I felt completely alone. It was a familiar but half-forgotten feeling. I hadn't felt this isolated since Greg died. He'd taken care of me for almost ten years after Voron's death. I had taken him for granted, and when he was murdered, it felt like someone had cracked my life apart with the blow of a hammer. The shapeshifters never treated me like an outsider, but at this moment I knew exactly how a third wheel felt. They were all still high on the thrill of the chase. It bonded them together, and here I was, the lone human on a horse, and Curran wasn't talking to me.

It was an unpleasant feeling and I didn't like it. I would deal with it. I didn't know what Curran's problem was, but I would find out. Curran never did anything without a reason and he was so controlled, even his one-night stands were premeditated.

Curran wouldn't lose his head over Lorelei, no matter how pretty and fresh she looked. He had cooked up some sort of plot, and now he was implementing it in his methodical Curran fashion, and the fact that he didn't tell me about his plan meant I really wouldn't like it. And that was exactly what worried me.

The road curved. I felt the weight of someone's gaze on me and looked up. Hugh. Looking at me as we rounded the bend. In front of him the castle loomed on top of the mountain. It was time to put my badass face on.

Twenty minutes later we dismounted in the courtyard. A djigit took my horse. Curran, Mahon, and Eduardo were speaking. I made a beeline for their group. I had some air I wanted to clear.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Hibla hurrying across the courtyard. I didn't want to talk to her. My shift with Desandra was about to start and I wanted to talk to Curran before it did. Don't come over to me, don't come over to me . . .


Crap on a stick. "Yes?"

"Can I speak with you?"

No. "Sure."

We walked toward the wall, out of the way.

"The creature you killed. Did it have wings?"

"Did you have an attack?"

"It appears so." Hibla lowered her voice. "I do not wish to start a panic or a hunt inside the walls. Will you view it with me?"

Not alone, I won't. I searched the crowd, looking for Andrea, and saw her and Raphael at the doors ushering Desandra inside. Just as well.

"Derek!" I called.

A moment later he stepped out of the crowd like a ghost.

"Come with me, please."

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