“My family found us from your registry. You should be aware that someone is leaking that information to outside sources.”

“I’ll ask my uncle about it.”

“Please don’t. Every inquiry you make just brings us closer to discovery. I was told that it was your family that had looked into our past seven years ago, and that they had tipped off the ones chasing us. Certainly someone had delved into our past and found enough about us to have us blackmailed. I wasn’t told who-”

“You were told? Care to elaborate?” His voice was harsh. He had put the pieces together. I had been hoping I could just gloss over that part.

“Declan-”

“You dare say his name to me like that? You mention him like some kind of confidante?” His voice was a roar, and waves of power lapped at me. I knew that every druid in the building must have felt those tempestuous waves of his power. He was a fearsome being now, even more so than before.

I swallowed nervously. This was very dangerous ground for us. “I apologize. But there is a leak within the druids. It is not something I care to repeat,” I finally settled on saying. I looked down. The less said about Declan, the better.

He was silent for a time, which was a vast improvement over questions about Declan.

All of my charred things had been laid beside the bed. They weren’t in top shape, but still covered the essentials. It was enough. I began to get dressed, my back to him.

“So, what happened back there?” he asked finally

I assumed he was referring to my passing out. “I honestly have no idea. It’s been happening to me a lot lately. Perhaps there’s a mortal in my bloodline somewhere, and my number’s up.” I was joking, but hell, it was as good a guess as anything, at that point.

“How old are you then?” he asked. The subject had never come up between us before. I knew he had always suspected that I was immortal, considering how long ago we’d met, but I’d never confirmed or denied his suspicions.

I smiled at him, and his jaw clenched hard. “A lady never tells, darling.”

He swallowed. “Don’t toy with my, Jillian. Ever again. I’m immune to your charms now.” I knew he was telling the truth, and it made me sad.

“What’s going to happen to Mav and Michael?” I changed the subject.

He started rubbing his temples. “I’m undecided. I’m thinking about ripping their heads off. That’s the only idea I’ve come up with. You’re the wronged party. Tell me what you think their punishment should be.”

Oh boy. A part of me thought the world would be a better place without those two thugs. But most of me thought that was too harsh a punishment. Perhaps I sympathized with them, just a little, because I knew their hatred for me was rooted in their love of Dom, and how I had hurt him. “I guess you shouldn’t kill them,” I said grudgingly. “Maybe just some torture and imprisonment?”

“Perhaps,” was his answer. Frustrating man.

“So are we square then? I’m off your roster, and you’re done with your questions?” I asked, not nearly ready to leave, but knowing that I had to.

“I’ll have to enter something in the books. I’ll make sure it’s something unexceptional, and that you’re not listed as sisters,” he told me.

“I guess it shouldn’t matter, as long as you don’t enter the address of our house or shop.” I got up and headed for the door.

He stopped me with a question. “Was it only ever a game to you?” His voice was barely more than a whisper.

I froze, my hand on the doorknob. “You know it wasn’t,” I told him softly

I could feel his rage building in the air. He stood several feet behind me now. He was like a violent storm being held at bay through sheer willpower. It was hard to keep my back to such a presence. “I know that you told me more lies than truth. I know that you jumped from my bed to his. Or were you sharing both the whole time?” His fist punched a hole into the wall, not a foot from my head, but he kept talking. I studied that gaping hole with wide eyes. “I know that you never would have looked back if Mav and Michael hadn’t found you.” I sure as hell wasn’t going to mention that Collin had actually found me, too, geas in hand, and that that was the only reason I had come to him. He continued, “I know that you’ll walk out that door with no regrets. I know a lot of things about you, but not that.”

I lifted my shoulder in a jerky shrug, turning to look at him. I deserved all of his doubt, I’d practically courted it, but it was hurting me. “And what do you want me to say? I know all about your love life. There’s probably someone waiting right now for me to leave your bed.” He wasn’t meeting my eyes, for once, and I knew it was the truth. “You can act the wronged lover all you want, but it’s not love for me that makes you f**k all those other women. It’s your pride. I have to suspect that’s the only part of you that was really hurt when I left.” I was walking out the door as I finished. I always seemed to get the last word with him, but I always wanted to take it back.

Sure enough, there was a lovely young blond waiting on the posh sofa by the elevator. I had the strong urge to scratch her eyes out, or maybe chop her head off, but I just nodded politely. I was wearing my wig, shades, and black getup again. Strangely enough, it didn’t make me feel real cute anymore.

As I waited for the elevator, I felt his presence behind me. I turned around to see him standing in the doorway, arms crossed, fuming at me. The blond stood up obediently when she saw him. I looked between him and the blond, her waiting eagerly, him not even seeing her, and my vision just went sort of red and fuzzy.

I stepped up beside her, studying her closely, having to look down to do so. I looked pointedly at Dom. “Nowhere near tall enough,” I told him. “Not blond enough either. Oh, and too tan.” Steam might have been rising out of his ears, but he didn’t move a muscle. “Her tits are way too small. And her face and eyes are all wrong. Is this the closest imitation of me you could come up with tonight? ” The elevator arrived, and I stepped into it, smoothly finishing, “But I suppose, in the dark, lying down, it’s all the same to you.” I blew him a kiss before the door closed.

I might have indulged in a minor sobbing fit on the ride down…..I don’t want to talk about it. But yeah, I always got the last word, and I always felt like a royal bitch for it.

 I called Lynn on my way back to our house. She, of course, thought it was a terrible idea for me to go back there, after the day we’d had. It was, in fact, a horrendous idea, but I was too exhausted to care. The thought of searching the desert for some hidden retreat in the dark was just too daunting at that moment. I promised to head to the retreat first thing in the morning, then hung up wearily. She didn’t ask me how it had gone with Dom. She knew me well enough, and was familiar enough with our sordid history, to know that I wouldn’t want to talk about it anytime soon.


Tags: R.K. Lilley Heretic Daughters Vampires
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