“I’m Kane, by the way.” He opens the box and gets out a small white cloth.

His fingers tremble as he wipes the blood away. Maybe he doesn’t like the sight of it?

“I’m Juliet,” I respond after a second because I’m too busy focused on the warm tingle beneath my skin. “Thank you again for this. I really am sorry for trespassing.”

Here he is trying to help me and I’m being distracted and rude. I’m so calm and happy right now that all of my emotions before this seem insane. Why was I so scared?

I lean down a bit to try and get a look at his face. But I’m beginning to think he’s hiding it from me. Which only makes me want to see it more.

“You’re welcome here anytime.”

I ignore his response because I doubt I’ll ever be back here again. Even if in this moment I don’t want to move from this spot. I feel so good that I think I might just move in. As soon as I have the thought I have to stop myself from laughing at how ridiculous it sounds.

I do my best to sit still as he tends to the scrape on my arm. He takes his time cleaning the wound gently. He’s so careful with me.

He leans down slowly, getting close to the wound. I freeze, wondering what he’s doing, and my heart begins to beat loudly.

“Kane?” I say softly, and he stops moving closer.

I feel his breath against my arm, but before he can respond, the doors fly open and I nearly jump out of my seat.

Four

Kane

“What’s going on here?” Ravana says when she walks into the room.

Her eyes narrow on the scene before her, but she’s not my concern. I can feel Juliet’s heartbeat speed up, and the fear that I removed from her earlier is back. I had her calm and supple, but then Ravana came in like a bull in a china shop.

“He was just helping me,” Juliet blurts out before I can explain. “I climbed over the gate and cut myself pretty bad.”

Ravana is in a dark green cotton dress. It goes down to her feet and has sleeves so it covers her ivory skin. She’s beautiful, but she’s only ever been my sister. Her dark black hair is in waves down her back. Her anger shows on her face.

“Everything is fine. You can leave now, Ravana,” I say as gently as I can while trying to let her know she needs to go. I don’t want to scare Juliet.

Ravana takes out her phone and hits a few buttons before putting it back in her bag.

“Is this your wife?” Juliet whispers to me as her eyes dart between us.

“This is my sister, Ravana. Ravana, this is Juliet.”

“Nice to meet you,” Juliet says, and her body begins to relax again. Was she so worried that I was married?

“I don’t have a mate,” I say as I pack up the first-aid kit.

“Kane, can I speak with you privately?” Ravana says, not addressing Juliet.

“If you’ll excuse me,” I say to Juliet, grabbing a blanket off the back of the couch and covering her with it. “I’ll be right back.”

Her fingers touch my hand as I tuck the blanket around her. It’s only briefly, but it feels so intimate and real. Could she possibly like the way I feel?

Ravana clears her throat and I reluctantly stand up and walk out of the room with her hot on my heels. I close the double doors and walk down the hall to make sure Juliet can’t hear what we’re saying.

“Her hearing isn’t as good as ours.” The way Ravana says it, there’s a sting to her words. Before I can ask her what the problem is, she puts her hands on her hips and stares me down. “What the hell is going on in there, Kane? You have a human in your home. Do you know how many laws you are violating right now? If Bishop were here he would lose his shit.”

“She was hurt.” My anger is boiling right now, but I can’t lose my temper. I need to remain in control.

“No shit, I could smell the blood when I drove through the gates. It scared the shit out of me.”

“Did you think suddenly after a hundred years I snapped and killed a human?”

Ravana rolls her eyes and crosses her arms. “No, of course not. I just didn’t know what happened. You know Bishop has told us stories about vampires coming to the end of their lives and going crazy. I just—I don’t know.” She shrugs.

“I may not be as young as you, but I’m not old. And our leader is the one you should be worried about. He gets closer to his two hundredth year with every rise of the moon. Bishop has also seen a lot more than I have in my time. My scars don’t allow me to explore as much as he has.”

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