The lost soul, p.30
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       The Lost Soul, p.30

         Part #1 of Fallen Souls series by Jessica Sorensen
 
Page 30

 

  His hand trembles as he sinks the needle into his skin. Every one of my nerve endings rage wildly. He waits, but I don’t speak—I can’t speak. Don’t do it. He can die now. Don’t let him die. When he realizes I might not say anything, his breathing panics out in spasms. He nods, ready to go through with it.

  Aislin lets out a hysterical weep. “Alex! Stop!”

  But it’s too late. He starts to inject the medicine into his heart. And that’s when it all comes rushing back to me.

  Alex and I. The hide out. Violet flowers. Love. Blood Promise. Forever. Everything I’ve ever felt surges through me and jumpstarts my emotions.

  I scream at the top of my lungs. “Stop! Stop! Stop! Stop. It’s me. It’s me. Alex stop!”

  He gags as he wrenches the needle out of his heart, blood soaking his shirt. He pants, his skin paling as his glossy eyes travel to the bloody needle in his hand. “Damn it…” His breath slips away and he crumples to the floor.

  A heart dying scream erupts from my lips. “Aislin! Untie me! Please. He can die now!”

  Aislin buckles over Alex’s body with her head tucked down and manic sobs croak from her mouth. “He’s dead, Gemma. He’s dead. ”

  “No he’s not!” I cry, tears inundating my eyes. I tug on the chains until they puncture my skin, until blood overflows my wrists, until I feel the pain unconditionally. “Aislin, please untie me. I need to be with him. ”

  She appears over me, eyes swollen, tears streaking her cheeks. Sucking in a deep breath, she unlocks the chains. I spring free, scramble over the edge of the bed, and stumble over to him. His eyes are open, vacant, his arms and legs are sprawled on the floor. He has no breath. No heartbeat. I cover my body over his and sob, tears blotting his shirt.

  “Please wake up. ”

  But the only response I get is the sound of my own dying heart.

  Chapter 27

  Aislin tries to pry me off him. “Gemma, come on. You have to move. This isn’t healthy. ”

  I cling to him like he’s my life and shake her off. “Leave me alone. Please. ” I hear her leave. I lay motionless in the dark. The moon haunts the sky and the branches of the trees scratch the window. My cheek’s pressed to Alex’s chest with false hope that it will start beating again. Part of me had doubted Lucinda, but Alex’s body is turning ice cold.

  “I’m so sorry,” I whisper. “This is all my fault. I never should have gone to The Afterlife. ”

  Heavy boots clunk against the floor. Laylen kneels beside me. “No, it’s not. ”

  “Are you… are you yourself again?” I whisper softly.

  “Aislin’s spell worked on me. ” He rubs my back comfortingly. “And this isn’t your fault. It’s mine. I’m the one who drove out to the field that night. I don’t even know why I did it. ”

  “Probably because you were possessed,” I mumble. “Just like Alex was—just like I was. ”

  He doesn’t say anything and his hand continuously smoothes my back and my hair.

  I shut my eyes with handfuls of Alex’s shirt grappled in my hands. “You should go check on Aislin. She’s probably falling apart too. ”

  “Are you sure?” he checks tentatively.

  “Yeah, I’m fine. I just want to stay with him for a little longer, okay?”

  He kisses the top of my head. Seconds later, he leaves the room and the door closes. Time slips by and I don’t plan on moving anytime soon, if ever. I’ll lie here forever, never letting go. Otherwise, I’ll have to face the reality that Alex is gone. And I don’t ever want to endure those emotions.

  “Gemma. ” His voice startles me.

  I lean back quickly, blinking through the tears. “Alex?”

  His eyes shimmer like emeralds in the moonlight. He gasps, oxygen returning to his chest. His heart thumps, connecting with mine. I feel alive again.

  “You’re alive,” I sob, wiping the tears from my face with the back of my hand. “That means Lucinda was lying. ”

  He shakes his head disoriented. “No, she wasn’t lying. I died, but I…” He sits up, clutching his head. “She sent me back here. ”

  “Who?” I run my hands up his arms, my fingers needing to touch him. “Annabella? Does that mean she’s free from Helena?”

  “No, Helena let me go. ” He lets his hand fall from his head. “She’s taken over the Essences now and she let me go for some weird reason. Why did she let me go?”

  “Because you’re supposed to be my puppet,” I say absentmindedly.

  “Huh?” He blinks his eyes confoundedly. “Your puppet? Gemma, what are talking about?”

  “Nothing. Never mind. ” I gently loop my arms around his neck, because he’s still fragile from death. “I don’t want to talk about Helena now. I’m just glad your—” My voice squeaks and I clear my throat. “I’m just glad your back. ”

  “But why?” Alex obsesses, fiddling with the hole in his shirt where the needle entered. “Why would she let me go like that? And if she did, does that mean I’m a Protected One now?”

  “I’m not sure. Maybe…” I drag my fingers through his hair, breathing in his musky scent. “You died just to bring me back. Why… why would you do that?”

  He meets my eyes, powerful and intense. “Why wouldn’t I do it? I love you, Gemma, more than my life. ”

  I straddle his lap and burrow my head in his neck, loving him more than I ever have. “I’m sorry I did it. I’m sorry I ever went to The Afterlife. ”

  He hooks a finger under my chin and tips my head up. “It wasn’t your fault. You were just trying to save Laylen. But please, please, please don’t ever do it again. You risk too much all the time, always getting in the middle of things. ”

  I nod, but it feels like a lie. For some reason, I sense that I’ll be the one to bring a storm of death down on the world.

  He delicately traces my lips. “I saw some stuff when I died. About you and me. ” He picks my locket up from the floor and fastens it around my neck.

  “Bad stuff?” I kiss the tip of his finger. Then lean in and kiss the line of his jaw.

  “Gemma…” He groans as I suck on a sensitive spot on his skin. “We have to talk about this. ”

  “In a little while,” I beg, desperate to be with him. I thought he was dead and every doubt I had about our relationship, our connection, has evaporated. “I just want to be with you right now. ”

  His face looks sad in the moonlight, as if he’s baring agonizing secrets. But he gives me what I want, cupping the back of my neck and bringing my lips to his. His chest rumbles with a low growl as I suck his bottom lip into my mouth. He tries to stand up with me positioned on his lap, but he’s weak and his legs falter. I slide off and take his hand, leading him to the bed. The back of my legs brink the edge of the bed and I tumble backwards, pulling him down with me. He steadies himself with his hands, only a sliver of space left between our bodies. I eliminate the space by arching my body.

  “Gemma. ” He’s breathless, eyes wild and needy. “I’m not sure… I think we should… How am I sure Helena’s gone for good?”

  My gaze bores powerfully into his and that’s all he needs. He rips his shirt off and tosses it on the floor, dazzling me with the sight of his broad chest and defined arms. His voice growls out untamed, “We’re going to talk about this later, though. ”

  “Okay. ” I bite my bottom lip, repressing a smile.

  His lips smother mine and we fade into the night.

  ***

  “I need to find a way to save Nicholas. ” It’s been hours of kissing and touching. My lips are swollen and my cheek’s resting against his bare chest. The blankets are pulled over us and our bodies radiate heat. Outside the sun leisurely embarks over the mountains, tinting the land with a buttery glow.

  His fingers play with my hair as he angles his head back and peers down at me through his long eyelashes. “Save Nicholas from what?”

  I pull a guilty face. “While I was under Helena’s
orders, I made him take me to the City of Crystal and used him to get my powers back. He strapped to the giant ball in the City of Crystal. ”

  He inclines over me and sweeps my hair to the side of my neck. “Oh my God… you’re being serious. ”

  “Of course I’m being serious,” I say. “Why would I kid about that?”

  He leans away, shaking his head. “I just have to say that you are a really mean evil villain. ”

  “That wasn’t me,” I gripe. “That was Helena… everything was Helena. ” I cringe, recollecting certain thoughts I had about Laylen. “All Helena. ”

  “I know. ” He eyes me like he knows my secrets. “Okay, so we try to get Nicholas out of there. Then what?”

  “Do you want to tell me what you saw when you died?” I place a hand on his cheek and his stubble is rough against my palm.

  He flinches at the remembrance. “I think what I saw… it was our future, but I’m not completely sure. ”

  “It was bad,” I assume.

  He nods, swallowing hard. “We weren’t together. ”

  “That’s not possible,” I assure him with fire in my veins. “It can’t be our future then. ”

  He pins his lips together, staring out at the sunlight sparkling over the land. “It felt real… like I was standing there really watching it. ”

  “It sounds like a vision. ” My pulse accelerates. “You don’t… you don’t have a Foreseer mark by chance?”

  He shakes his head and his pain envelops me.

  “Alex, will you please tell me what you saw,” I plead.

  He shuts his eyes and breathes deeply. “You were… you were with Laylen and I was dead. ”

  Chapter 28

  “It’s not going to happen,” I tell him firmly. “You’re not going to die and Laylen and I… we’re just friends. ”

  “I know that. ” His glossy eyes flick open. “Well, I know you wouldn’t be with Laylen. ”

  “Helena’s gone. I promise she is. ” I roll on my back, tugging my shirt down, which was shoved up all the way over my bra. “And we’ll find a way to get her out of this world. And all her Lost Souls. ”

  “All of them? How many are there?”

  I sigh, shamefaced, and tell him what my evil mind did during its brief trip to the dark side. Well, with the exception of Laylen’s and mine’s overly close relationship. Thank God we didn’t actually do anything.

  “Jesus Christ,” are the first words that leave his lips. “So anyone can be possessed? We don’t even know who’s themself anymore?”

  “I’m not sure. ” I trace the lines of the star on his wrist, giving myself a sense of security. “They could be destroyed now that Helena no longer has control of me, but I doubt it. ”

  “Me too. Nothing’s ever that easy. ” His lips begin to part. “Gemma, I—”