Reyna had nearly made it to the door the moment that Harrington lost his grip on B. She lunged forward, landing like a cat on all fours above Reyna. Reyna screamed.
“No! No, stop!” she shrieked, trying desperately to get away from B.
B held her in place, exposed her fangs, and then without preamble sank them into Reyna’s arm.
It all happened in slow motion. The feeling of adrenaline pumping through her system. The vamp venom she hadn’t gotten earlier from the IV flooding her bloodstream and taking over. Fight or flight kicking in. Tears streaming down her face as B drank her blood. The terror and disbelief and pain.
Blood rape. Forcing herself upon Reyna to drain her against her will. At least as an escort she had chosen this. She had accepted it as her fate. And Harrington…he took the blood without her consent, but this was…this was worse. This was…degrading and humiliating and made her want to vomit all over the floor. She hadn’t realized how much worse it could be.
This was hell. This was actual hell.
Just when she thought it was all over, an electrical shock pulsed through them. She and B screamed.
Screamed and screamed and screamed.
B fell in a heap on the floor, twitching and shaking. Her head cocked to the side irregularly. Her eyes wide and wild.
Reyna pushed farther away from her, clutching her arm and shaking from head to toe. Fuck, it had stopped. He’d stopped it. She had thought that was the end. She had thought it was all over. She didn’t care how he had stopped it, just that he had.
Harrington stepped over B. “What a pleasant demonstration.”
Reyna curled in on herself, trying desperately to avoid Harrington’s gaze. Her body was trembling involuntarily and her heart stuttering in fear in her chest. Harrington’s shadow covered her frame. She skittered farther away from him, pressing her aching head into the glass. She needed to be away from here…far away from here. But Harrington would never let her go. He’d never leave her alone. She was going to die like this—or worse, be kept like an animal. Kept like B.
He tipped her chin up to look at him and his keenly intelligent eyes. “You have been living in privilege. You think that there is nothing I could do to you that hasn’t already been done and you are wrong. I need your blood, but only your blood. I don’t need your mind. I don’t need you happy. I certainly don’t need you living in luxury. This is your fate if you continue to displease me.”
Reyna sank back into her bed with her knees tucked up under her chin. Her tears had finally halted hours after she’d been deposited back in her room. The nurse had stuck around long enough to bandage her up, but vampire bites healed quicker than average injuries. Usually within a couple hours, maybe a day or two for a bad bite, it would fade away to just a thin scar. And sometimes the scars wouldn’t even last. She had a feeling this one would. Scar physically, yes, but definitely emotionally. She wasn’t soon going to forget the feeling of B biting her and the sheer horror of almost dying.
The rush was already wearing off from the bite and she was crashing hard. Harrington had lamented the fact that she had never gotten addicted to the venom. A lot of people did. There was an entire group of people who were blood whores desperate for their next fix. He couldn’t figure out why she wasn’t that way.
Reyna always suspected it was because her first bite had been from Beckham. He’d been the one to say that emotional connection intensified the reaction. At the time she hadn’t wondered if he knew that from personal experience, but as she sat in her bed with a massive headache coming on, she let herself go to that dark place.
All the maybes and what-ifs flew through her mind. What if Beckham was better off without her? Maybe he’d loved someone else. What if biting Penelope had been like this? Reyna shuddered at the thought of Penelope. She was the mayor’s daughter with all the privilege and entitlement that came with it. Penelope and Beckham had been romantically involved as a cover for his involvement with the rebellion. But it didn’t make it any easier to think about them together or the fact that he had drunk Penelope’s blood. Maybe he really did have feelings for Penny…even though he’d claimed he didn’t. Maybe he didn’t want to find Reyna. What if he’d orchestrated this whole thing?
She squeezed her eyes shut and rocked back and forth. No. She couldn’t think these things. This was what Harrington wanted. He had broken her. He’d put her in a situation that had been beyond anything she had had to handle before and the trauma colored all of her thoughts. He wanted her to lose it. He wanted her to turn back into that complacent little pet. His stupid queen. Whatever the fuck that even meant.