Reyna felt as if she were coming out of dense fog. She hadn’t been able to see an inch in front of her face and now…now Beckham was here. He was here and she could think properly. She felt no pain. She felt none of the normal side effects of the bite. It all vanished on the wind. Leaving her clear and levelheaded…and confused as fuck.
Her hand jumped to her neck where deep bite marks should have been. But there was nothing. Not even a scab. Clear perfect unmarred skin.
“What…what did you do?” she gasped.
Beckham looked as shocked as she did.
“Beautiful,” Graves said. He took a deep breath as if he were inhaling the very essence of what he’d just watched. “Wonderfully done.”
They snapped their heads to the side to glare at Graves. Reyna had forgotten he was even in the room.
“What the hell happened?” Reyna asked.
“He healed you.”
“How?” Reyna couldn’t fathom it.
“I transferred my vampire healing properties to you,” Beckham said. “I could feel it happening.”
“Indeed.” Graves rubbed his gloved hands together. “Even better than I imagined.”
“You’re one sick fuck,” Beckham muttered.
“Payment rendered,” Reyna said a little breathlessly. “Are you satisfied?”
“Hardly,” Graves said. “But that will do.”
Then he turned around and walked away.
“Where’s he going?” Reyna asked.
Beckham shrugged. She could see that despite the amount of blood she’d just given him, he was flagging.
And so was she. She clutched onto Beckham’s sleeve as her accelerated pulse started to recover. She couldn’t believe that he’d…healed her. She had never even considered that to be a possibility. All the things that he could have done when she reached out for him, and he’d made her whole again.
Maybe that was the point.
They were two halves of the same whole.
It made sense that if her blood could heal him…his vampire powers could heal her. Her blood match.
“I love you,” she whispered.
He kissed her forehead. “I love you too.”
Graves was gone long enough for them to worry. They lost the sound of his leather oxfords as he’d disappeared into the stacks.
Reyna was happy for the reprieve. She needed a couple minutes to recuperate after what had happened. She didn’t know what he’d gotten from that bite, but it made her wary. What kind of price was it to watch Beckham drink her blood? Was he just toying with them? Did he know the toll it would take on them both? Or was there some other more sinister purpose?
By the time he’d finally come back, Reyna was standing on her own two feet again. She felt good. Better than good. As if part of what had made Beckham so indestructible had been transferred to her.
“You required information about Mr. Harrington and what he’s working on,” Graves said. “William Harrington is building an army.”
Reyna stammered over her shock.
Beckham simply sighed. “So it begins again.”
“An army of vampires?” Reyna asked.
“Of course. He’s been turning people, setting a few of his vampires loose to feed the fear around the cogitare anemia. He’s housing them in his new facilities and using the humans who enter as a feeding ground.”
Reyna sighed. That much they’d figured out on their own. Well, everything except the army. “What are his plans with his army?”
“What are armies used for but destruction?” Graves asked.
“He’s planning to take over,” Beckham guessed.
“My sources point all the way up. Depose the human president and put a vampire politician in his place that he can use as a puppet. You can imagine where this goes. The facilities here in the city are the first wave. He intends to set them up all over the country. Humans are nothing but a food source. Vampires rule aboveground.”
“Fuck,” Reyna whispered.
“We suspected much of this. We’ve paid for more than this,” Beckham said, taking a threatening step forward. “What’s his next move? Where’s he holed up? How do we get to him?”
Graves held up a hand. “Keep your demands to yourself. I wasn’t finished.”
Reyna tensed. If an army and trying to take over the world wasn’t the bad part…
Graves removed a small glass vial from the inside of his suit coat. Liquid sloshed around the inside. “This is what he’s testing in the housing facilities.”
Reyna stopped breathing. “What…what is it?”
“Oh no,” Reyna whispered.
The first time that Reyna had ever heard Harrington discuss the possibility of an antidote she had been sick to her stomach. The very idea that vampires could go back to drinking from any human that they wanted regardless of blood type was a horrifying concept. The blood type cure kept them in check. Even if, as she had later learned, it wasn’t as potent for every vampire, it still helped to drink the right match. But that would all go away with an antidote.
Reyna had thought she’d stalled that research the day that she’d saved Jodie from Visage. A doctor had said that she was critical to the development of the antidote and Reyna had broken her out right after that. It chilled her to think that they must have been further along than she thought. Or had used someone else’s blood in Jodie’s place.