Reign (Marko Delacroix #5)(10)By: Alaska Angelini
“Let’s get the hell out of here!” Boyd dropped the last dead officer, letting out an exhilarated yell as he waved me to follow. There was no hesitation this time. I ran behind him, leaving the place I was so sure was my home for another that was suddenly calling me forward.
We got to the end of the road and slowed as he approached a grate. An odd tug pulled at my stomach, reaching so deep inside of me that I barely heard the words Boyd was exchanging with the vampire inside. It was heated for only a moment before Boyd tapped me.
“Holy shit. Let’s go, buddy. I hear your maker has arrived. This is turning out better than I could have dreamed.”
Darkness surrounded me as I lowered within, and the tug at my core got harder, luring me deeper into the tunnels. What secrets were lurking ahead? What was the feeling … that power tempting me forward? I wasn’t sure, but I suddenly needed it.
Heat singed my lungs with every inhale and the wetness on my face was beginning to get sticky as it dried. With the tightness that accompanied the sensation, I opened my mouth repeatedly. Movement to my side had me stiffening and almost attacking. The vampire at the door froze, hissing as I continued on. The fear I had detected had my eyes narrowing for the briefest moment, but I wasn’t able to give it much thought as light from ahead caught my attention.
I knew this place, even if I couldn’t remember it. The constant déjà vu left my mind spinning and defensive walls rising. Something was off…something I couldn’t quite figure out. If it wasn’t for the tempting aura, I would have run. But I suddenly had to have it—no matter the cost.
Deep gasps drew me out of a deep sleep. My pulse was racing and it was hard to breathe. My eyes flew open and I immediately reached out to Tessa’s sitting frame. Dark hair haloed around her in a mass of loose curls. From the glow of the closet light, she was paler than usual. It drove me up to her side while I reached for her.
“What’s wrong, love? What is it?”
The covers flew back as she sprung from the bed, grabbing her robe. “He’s here. Hunter is in the city.”
“What?!” The deep vibrations of my growl filled the room. I was right behind her, racing to the closet to grab my pants. Rage was all I knew. I wanted to kill him. No, I was going to kill him. The urge was undeniable. Vampire or not, he had shown me pain I’d never recover from. I’d almost lost Tessa because of him and I couldn’t forgive him for that.
“You have to get Aetas and let him know.” She raced for the door, a mass of black silk flying behind at her speed.
“Don’t you dare—”
She was already gone, leaving me trying to button my pants as I burst through the door after her.
“Get Aetas,” she yelled, from the darkness. “We don’t know what we’re dealing with.”
Fire burned into my stomach as I slowed enough to pound into his door. When I threw it open, I noticed the light was on and he was awake, reaching for his shirt.
“Tessa says Hunter is here. She went to collect him.” I didn’t tell him to hurry as I left the door open and started running again. I didn’t even want him to know. What I wanted was to get to the bastard who could very well end up trying to kill Tessa all over again.
The lights from the heart of the city shone before me and I broke into the large room just in time to see Tessa coming to a stop in front of Boyd and Hunter. Blood covered his face and he had his head slightly cocked to the side, staring at her captivated. When I saw a smile pull at the side of his mouth, I didn’t slow. I ran faster, hissing as my fangs shot down. His hand rose toward her cheek and my vision flashed red. MINE! The word repeated obsessively in my head. He paused, mid-way, jerking his attention to me, baring his own fangs as he shoved her out of the way and broke into a sprint, right for me.
Tessa voice was but an echo, deep within the reaches of my mind. I was too far gone. Too impatient to spill his blood after everything he’d done to us.
My claws grew and I pushed from the balls of my feet diving for him, just as he did for me. The force from the invisible wall knocked the air from my lungs. I fell to the ground coughing as Tessa collapsed to her knees in pain. Her hand was still raised, but I could tell my power against her shield had taken its toll. Seeing what I’d done left my heart sinking.