I was gratified to find a stash of jewels that I had missed on the first two runs, making my efforts worthwhile. I did a once over of the entire place, until I was satisfied that I had saved all that was salvageable.

The druids were still in a panic when I came back outside. One was still on the phone, giving a blow by blow account of my ‘insane’ actions.’

I ignored them all, loading my remaining possessions into Christian’s tiny car. I had parked it at the curb, instead of in the garage, one of the few clever things I’d done lately. I had salvaged so little that it all actually fit into the limited space. I shrugged into a skintight Hello Kitty T-shirt, and slipped on some tiny pink cheer shorts. They were my most embarrassing PJ’s, but they were better than running around naked. I knew I could find something more suitable at Christian’s retreat, where much of our things had been moved the day before. Someone had even been forward-thinking enough to move our cars out of our garage, and to some other property. I was glad that I was the only one who seemed to be a step behind lately.

The druid on the phone waved at me rather frantically as I slipped into my car.

“The Arch is on his way. You aren’t permitted to leave-“

I laughed, peeling out. I got out of there like, well, like it was on fire.

I had soundly lost my druid tail by the time I left the city.

I arrived at the retreat bright and early. I seriously considered blaming the fire on one of our many enemies, but eventually decided against it. Needless to say, Lynn wasn’t thrilled with the news, though the loss of key pieces in her extensive wardrobe seemed to be her major concern.

I crashed for a few hours, woke up, and ate. I quickly noticed that Christian’s retreat was missing a Christian. Lynn informed me that he’d gone back to his place for a few of his ‘toys’. It wasn’t long before I got dressed, taking off to join him. It was not a day where I could sit around, idle. I needed action.

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

Blood-Oath

DAY 4

I knocked on Christian’s door yet again, waited another minute, then used my key. This was becoming a habit. I was grumbling as I walked in the door. At least I didn’t see any hooker shoes in his entryway this time.

“Honey, I’m home!” I shouted in the direction of his bedroom. “Time to work off your flab, Candy Ass!” I removed my shoes, carrying them to the gym. When I reached his pristine living room, I froze. My shoes dropped with a soft thunk onto the carpet

Christian faced me, tied to a chair and gagged with a generous amount of silver duct tape. Six druids surrounded him, but I only had eyes for one of them. Dom lounged in a chair set beside Christian’s, his arm propped casually along the back of the other man’s chair in a deceptively relaxed pose. He eyed me coldly. I studied Christian. He seemed largely unhurt, with only a few bumps and bruises. So far.

I held my hands up to show I wanted peace. I addressed Dom. “Please, let him go. Whatever you might think, you have no reason to quarrel with him.” Christian started trying to talk through his gag, making incoherent noises. I had a pretty good idea, though, that he was contesting the no reason to quarrel comment. One of the druids calmly punched him in the stomach, effectively winding him.

I glared at them all. “How very brave. Six of you to take on one?” I was speaking to Dom, and he knew it. He fumed at me.

“I’ll gladly fight him one on one. In fact, I can think of nothing I’d prefer more.”

“Then fight me.” My temper was starting to surface. “I’m the one you want to lash out at. I’m the one that wronged you. All Christian ever did to piss you off was to associate with me, and be born male.”

“Swear on your blood you’ve never f**ked him.” Well, that shocked me. Of all the conversations I never thought I’d be having with my psycho Ex. His tone was chilling. I sooo did not want to go here, but lately, everything important seemed to be out of my control.

I strode to him, holding out my bare arm. “Cut it,” I bit out. He pulled out a knife and cut me carefully. It was barely a nick. I knelt in front of him, ripping open his shirt and jacket. If he wanted to make a scene, I’d give him one. I pressed my wrist to his chest, over his heart. I glared into those exceptional eyes. “I’ve never f**ked him. I swear it. Feel better?” My tone was sarcastic.

He leaned back a little. “Not really. You’ve broken blood-oaths to me before. Why are you coming to his house dressed like that?” I was wearing my usual workout uniform of a black sports bra and bike shorts.

“I came here to work out. This is how I dress when I work out. Will you let him go now?”

“Actually, he’s been accused of attacking some druids. It happened yesterday, at the ren fair. Going by the description of his companions, I don’t think I have to tell you what their story is.”

I groaned inwardly. “So that’s why you’re here?”

“Not quite. The specific reason for my presence here involves some foreign royalty that I met with earlier today, and some interesting things I learned at that meeting. We had no other address connected to you. What luck that we coincided with your weekly appointment.” I wasn’t going to correct him that our appointments were usually at least four times a week, and that this hadn’t been one of them. Why fuel that fire?

“What’s any of that got to do with me?” I asked him. His precise, disinterested tone was really starting to piss me off.

“These royals were looking for something that matched a particular description. Two somethings, actually.” I got a sick feeling in my stomach, not wanting this subject to be going where I thought it was.

“Can we speak about this privately?” I asked suddenly, not looking at Christian.

Dom looked between me and Christian, a certain malice in his eyes that I was a stranger to. He smiled at me, and it was not a pleasant smile. “Is it be possible he doesn’t know?” he asked softly, adding a disturbing amount of relish to the question.

“Please,” I begged him softly, willing him not to say another incriminating word.

“Why would I listen to your plea?”

“Is there something you want from me? Is that what you’re getting at?”

His jaw clenched hard. “Many of the answers I wanted from you I found on my own this morning. What else could you give me?” He was being more of a bastard than I’d ever seen him. At least in regards to me. Even knowing he despised me, the thought of him showing no mercy towards me just wasn’t registering. And I’d thought I was far too old for naiveté.


Tags: R.K. Lilley Heretic Daughters Vampires
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