Sisters of Blood and Spirit Page 33

I bent down and reached for the book. As my fingers touched the soft leather cover, a tingle ran up my arm. I didn’t know if it was in welcome or warning. All I knew was that this book was not of this world and it wanted to remind me of that fact. I had to be very careful with it and not let anyone else handle it. God knew what its energy might do to someone not linked to the dead.

I gathered the book up and held it to my chest—it was like holding a box of droning bees against me. It wasn’t painful, but it wasn’t exactly pleasant, either.

Ben was on his cell when I entered the kitchen. He stood with his profile to me, one hand in his pocket. He really had changed since we were little. Would I feel so bad for being such a bitch to him if he wasn’t so gorgeous? Honestly, I didn’t want to give that too much thought, because I was pretty sure I knew the answer, and it didn’t look good on me.

“Okay,” he said to the person on the other end of the conversation. “We’ll meet you there.” He pressed the disconnect button and looked at me. “Kevin wants to have the séance at his house.”

“Good idea, since his parents are away.” Nan was great, but I figured even she would draw a line somewhere. Calling the dead into her house would probably be it. “We can mix up the ghost repellent there, too.”

“Ghost repellent?” To say he was incredulous would be an understatement.

“The groceries we bought. Ghosts are allergic to them, especially when they’re mixed together.”

That seemed to make sense to him. “Give me a lift back to the coffee shop? I need to get my car.”

We decided that I should drive with him so Nan wouldn’t be without a car. She drove us back to the coffee shop, asked me to text if I was going to be late and gave me a wink before driving off.

“She thinks we’re on a date,” I murmured. Even though I was standing there with bags of the weirdest groceries ever, and she knew there were ghost shenanigans going on, some part of my grandmother believed I was a normal teenager. That was nice.

“Don’t expect me to put out,” Ben joked, taking the bags from me. “I’m pretty, but I’m not easy. I’ll put these in my car.”

Hmm, I thought as he walked away. That’s too bad.

Maybe there was a little normal in me after all.


I wasn’t much of a help with research, but I watched over shoulders as the others tapped away on the keyboards and screens of their electronics. Amazing gadgets, really. I never tired of the living and their technology.

Although, I noticed that the living didn’t have a library that would bring you the book you wanted.

I wondered if Lark had found the book, and if she would bring it with her. Probably it would be for the best if no one else touched it. I didn’t know what sort of effect its energy might have on the living. I was fairly certain Lark would be all right, but I couldn’t say for sure, which made me nervous.

Speaking of which...I needed some time with my sister. Alone. I hadn’t really lied to her that morning when I told her I’d been in her room all night. I’d only spent a few hours with Kevin before guilt had driven me home. But never mind that. I wanted to know what had happened while I was gone, and if Kevin had said anything about me. I also wanted to know why Lark had chosen Ben to go with her.

While Kevin and Gage discussed the best way to protect the group against ghosts—which apparently involved a phone call to someone named “Chuck”—I got my chance to do a little snooping.

“Can I talk to you?” Sarah asked Mace. “Privately?”

Mace wore that half surprised, half annoyed expression that most boys seemed to have when they were interrupted from doing something they thought was important. “Now?”

“Yeah,” she said—as though there wasn’t anything more important—“now.”

He didn’t look happy about it, but he stood up and followed her out of the shop. I drifted through the nearest wall and caught up with them outside. They had walked around back where they could have a little privacy, but not too close to the Dumpsters.

“What?” he asked, hands on his hips.

Sarah folded her arms over her full chest. The wound on her cheek stood out sharp and red, and her aura vibrated brightly with tension. Poor Mace. “Do you have a thing for Lark?”

His eyebrows shot up, then lowered into a scowl. “Seriously? You dragged me out here because you’re jealous?”

“I’m not jealous of some white-haired freak,” she shot back.

Careful, sweetie. That freak’s my sister, and she’s got nothing on me.

“Hey, don’t call her that.” My opinion of Mace went up another couple of notches.

“I’m sorry,” Sarah sneered. “Did I insult your girlfriend?” She really was jealous. Lark would have such a laugh over this.

“She’s my friend.” He didn’t sound convinced. I understood. Lark didn’t go out of her way to make herself likable. “Our friend. She’s helping us get out of this mess.”

“What mess? Other than a sore stomach or cheek, what else has this supposed ghost done?”

Mace stared at her as though she was joking. “So, I suppose you’re not having nightmares?” He frowned again. “And of course you haven’t experienced any weird stuff—like hearing someone talking to you or feeling like you’re being watched even when no one else is there? You haven’t felt like you’re coming down with a flu that feels like it’s in your bones?”

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