Staring at him made the dream feel like a lifetime ago.

My fingers stilled along my hair as I watched him pull out a black shirt. How in the world was I supposed to pay attention when I had that to drool all over?

Seth looked over his shoulder at me. “See something you like?”

“A lot,” I told him, getting back to finishing my braid. “I see a lot that I love.”

One side of his lips kicked up as he tossed the shirt on the bed. A pair of black boxer briefs landed next, followed by tactical pants.

A Sentinel uniform.

Yum.

I finished the braid with a hair band and then flipped it over my shoulder. “I wish I was going with you guys today.”

He would’ve left for Pluckley immediately after the meeting with Marcus, but then everything had happened with Chicago. Late last night, Alex and Aiden had showed up to discuss going to Pluckley, the latter a little bruised but otherwise okay. I hadn’t really paid attention to what they’d been talking about. What happened in Chicago was in the forefront of my thoughts.

What in the hell were we going to do? There was no way Cora or Gable would be remotely ready in a month’s time to face the Titans, even if their abilities were unlocked. I’d been practicing with the elements since my abilities were unlocked and I still didn’t have complete control over them.

And the Titans knew this.

Straightening, Seth turned to me. “That’s the plan. Sort of shocked that Aiden relented on the whole allowing Deacon to go, but they’re he’s going with us.”

“I’m surprised to.” I dropped my hands to my lap. “I hope they’re careful. I mean, I know Luke is badass and Deacon is in his own way, but he’s…he’s got a kind heart.”

“You have a kind heart.” Seth’s fingers toyed with the towel at his hips.

“I do, but according to you, I’m also bloodthirsty.” I gave him a cheeky grin.

“Yeah, that’s right. You are. Huge turn-on.”

“Only you would be turned on by something like that.”

“Only I matter.”

I rolled my eyes and my eyes almost kept rolling, because Seth dropped the towel, and oh my.

The tips of my ears burned as my gaze slipped over his chest and stomach and then further south. Wow. I bit down on my lip.

“I won’t be gone all that long,” he said, and hell, I had no idea what he was talking about. “I plan to take them over, scope out the town, and then Aiden’s supposed to call me when they’re ready. I don’t plan on leaving you here alone.”

Huh?

Seth chuckled. “You are not paying any attention to what I’m saying.”

Blinking, I forced my gaze to his face. “Yeah, I am… Okay.” I lifted my hands helplessly. “What do you expect? You’re standing here naked and you’re so nice to look at.”

“You’re nice to look at.”

“But I’m fully clothed, so…”

“Shame.” Planting his fists on the bed, he leaned in and kissed me. It was so soft and so sweet, it caused my stomach to dip. When he drew back, he repeated what he’d said. “I won’t be gone long.”

Letting my eyes drift closed, I rested my forehead against his. “You know I’m safe here, right?”

“Unless the walls are breached, and that has happened way too many times in the past for me to feel confident in their safety,” he reminded me. “So I don’t know if you’ll be safe here.”

A faint smile tugged at my lips. For some people, his overprotectiveness would chafe, but I found it sweet. “But they are more unprotected than me,” I pointed out, opening my eyes. “If the Titans are close to finding this demigod, you guys could be in danger. As of right now, I’m not.”

Seth didn’t respond as his lashes lifted and his gaze met mine. A long moment passed. “I don’t think the Titans will be straying too far from Chicago.”

“We don’t know that for sure. So I don’t want you to worry about me.” I pressed my finger against the faint cleft in his chin. “But you also don’t need to hurry back here because of me.”

Dipping his chin, he nipped at my finger. “What are you going to do today?”

“I think I’m going to check out the library and see if I can find Medusa. If anyone knows how the demigods are starting to manifest abilities or how to unlock their abilities, she might.” I pulled my finger free from his naughty little kisses. “And don’t think I didn’t notice you hadn’t responded to what I said.”

“Damn,” he murmured, sitting down next to me as naked as the day he was born. “I was hoping you didn’t catch that.”

I lifted a brow.

His grin turn boyish. “All right. I won’t rush back, but I’m not staying with them and it’s not because I’m worried about you. But because I’ll get bored and I’ll miss you. And then I begin to wonder if you’ll be taking a shower…touching yourself.”

“Stop.” Looking away, I grinned as I blushed. “How can you get bored in a town that’s supposed to be one of the most haunted places in the world?”

“Probably because it’s not haunted.” Kissing my cheek, he pushed off the bed and finally started dressing.

I didn’t know if I should be upset about that or not. “It better be haunted, or Deacon is going to be so disappointed.”

Buttoning his pants, he shot a grin over his bare shoulder. “I’m willing to bet he’s going to be disappointed.” He reached for his shirt. “Do you think you can wait to find Medusa until I get back?”

“Seth.” I pinned him with a dry look. “Last time I checked, Medusa hates dudes. Especially dudes like you.”

He froze, arms shoved into his sleeves. “Like me?”

“Yes. Like you. She will never talk to me if you’re around.” I paused. “And honestly, I don’t think she even likes you.”

“She doesn’t even know me.” He pulled the shirt on over his head. “How rude.”

I laughed softly. “Is your ego bruised?”

He appeared to think about that. “Nah.”

“Didn’t think so.”

His grin spread as he came forward again, placing his hands on either side of my legs. “Got a question for you.”

“I might have an answer for you.”

The damp strands of hair fell forward, slicing over his cheeks. “Did you wake up in the middle of the night?”

I was not expecting that question. “Did I wake you up?”

He tilted his head to the side. “A little. I was kind of half-asleep, but I had this distinct impression of you sitting up and then lying back down.” He drew back, letting his hands slide off the tan comforter. “And I think you were staring at me.”

“Oh, Lord,” I muttered, feeling my cheeks heat. “Why didn’t you say anything?”

“Why were you awake?”

Squirming, I lifted a shoulder. “I had a dream.”

His gaze searched mine. “A nightmare? Like the ones before?”

After I’d been held captive by Hyperion, I had a lot of nightmares. I hadn’t had any recently, but it didn’t surprise me that Seth probably thought this dream was due to that.

In that moment, I knew I could tell him the truth about what I’d dreamt last night. I could get it off my chest, shaking off the fear that lingered like a cough that wouldn’t go away, but that’s not what I did.

“Yeah.” I lowered my gaze. “It was just a nightmare.”

Two fingers pressed under my chin, drawing my gaze back up. Seth’s eyes were soft. “Next time, wake me up, babe. You don’t have to deal with that alone. Okay?”

“Okay,” I whispered.

I don’t know why I had chosen not to. Maybe I knew because if I did Seth would freak, and I didn’t want that. Not when he was going out there, going to a place the Titans could be close to discovering. And maybe…maybe it was because I feared that, if I spoke it out loud, then it became more real.

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