Davina, p.6
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       Davina, p.6

         Part #3 of Immortal Prophecy series by Tijan
 
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  Bastion stuck his head around. “Less creepy?”

  Her shoulders dropped. “Yes. I am not creepy.”

  The two vampires shared a look.

  “What?” She looked from one to the other.

  Bastion shrugged. “You’re a bit creepy.”

  “I am not.”

  “Yeah. Yeah, you are. Sorry to break the news.”

  She took a deep breath. Her chin lifted and she sat to her fullest height. “I am the representative of my clan. I am here to help a fellow sister, the followers of my sister, and I . . .” She clamped her mouth shut.

  Bastion raised an eyebrow. “Yes?”

  Her shoulders sagged down again. “Nothing.”

  Roane grinned. “You’re creepy, but in a good way.”

  “Thanks.” She lifted her head again.

  The two shared a slight smile, and Bastion groaned. “I’m getting the creeps now.”

  “What is the plan?” The question was almost thrown from the other side of the bonfire like a challenge. The small exchange between Saren and the two vampires was interrupted, and the small moment of a slight break in tension was sniffed away like it wasn’t supposed to have been there in the first place.

  Roan straightened, remembering how Christian Christane had once taken the woman he loved. A dark emotion took root inside of him. He wouldn’t allow that to happen again. He didn’t fear for the same repetition, but that he’d lose Davy because of the Alpha wolf. That would not happen, and the wolf sensed the deep determination. It was like an old rivalry, once buried was awoken again. His nostrils flared, knowing the near loathing was there. He couldn’t do anything about it, and the two weren’t on speaking terms. They couldn’t speak about Talia, at least.

  Pippa glanced up at him, picking up the undercurrents. She pressed her lips together and let out a small growl. She looked at both and said one word. “Davy.”

  Roane and her brother received the message. The small flare-up dampened immediately, but it was still there. It was a back burner turned to simmer. It was still hot and still dangerous if left ignored.

  Saren narrowed her eyes. She harrumphed. “Foolish human emotions.”

  No one responded, but she stood, and as she stepped away from the fire, she vanished.

  Roane continued to stare across the dancing flames at the werewolf. Neither looked away.

  DAVY

  I woke up on a bed and lifted my head, or I would’ve. My neck wouldn’t move. Stabbing pain sliced through me, and I cried out. My body instantly locked up, and I started trembling, sending even more stabbing pain through me.

  “Davy.”

  Gavin rushed inside, the sound of something was shoved aside, like a tarp. He added, “You’re awake? Are you okay?”

  “Yeah. I’m—” I couldn’t talk. My teeth were grinding together.

  He laid a hand on my arm and said, “You’ve been out for three days. Rest.”

  “Wha-a-at happened?”

  “You.”

  Me? I frowned at him, trying to remember. The Immortal was with me, she told me to sleep, and I was watching from above. “Lucan was going to catch us.”

  “You teleported Tracey and yourself. We only just found you guys yesterday. Tracey was exhausted by the time we did. She’d been standing guard over you.”

  “Teleported?”

  He nodded, grim. “You sent the both of you to the highest mountain. We’re twenty miles from the Mori camp. Wren’s the one that kept us going to find you. She said she could feel Tracey and used her scent. She tracked you guys.”

  He thought I did this. I didn’t. The Immortal did it, and I tried to sense her right now, but I couldn’t. It was like she wasn’t even inside of me. All I felt was nothing. Exhaustion. Pain. That was it.

  Gavin added, “It must’ve taken it out of you.”

  “Yeah.” I looked away. “It must’ve.”

  He gestured around, but I could only see above. It was a dark wall of rock. Gavin said, “We brought you into this cave. We used a tarp we found by a riverbed not far from here. It’s used to block out the cold for you.”

  For you. Those two words—they were all vampires. The cold didn’t matter to them, but I was human. I was The Immortal, or I thought I still was.

  “Is she awake?”

  I tensed, hearing Wren outside. She was angry. I could feel it coming off her in waves.

  Gavin studied me. “Are you up for her?”

  No. I said, “I need answers.”

  He nodded, then left my side. The tarp was lifted and he spoke to them, “She’s in pain. I don’t think she can take too much.”

  “She’s The Immortal. She can take more than any of us.” She shoved at the tarp, coming inside. I didn’t move my head over. My neck would’ve seized up again, but her anger became stronger. As she stood over me, glaring down, it was blanketing on top of me, and I struggled to push through it all.

  This wasn’t normal. This was my empathic side. This was how it had been when I still struggled to control my senses. Since becoming The Immortal, I hadn’t had this problem. Everything was easily controlled, even kept at bay so I could pull it forth as I pleased. This . . . something was wrong.

  “What happened back there?”

  “Wren.” Tracey came inside. “Don’t berate her. She needs rest, not to be interrogated.”

  “I don’t care.” She twisted back to look at her. “She brought you both here. Why? How? Was it The Immortal power in her? Is Lucan coming for us? Does he know our location? Do we even know our location? We need answers.”

  “And we’ll get them.” Tracey touched her lover’s arm. Her voice gentled. “But not now. I was carrying her body. Her body, Wren. Not her, but a body. Her heart stopped.”

  My eyes snapped to her, and I jerked upright.

  Oh.

  Shit.

  I held my breath, knowing what was coming—and yep, there it was. A crest of new pain crashed onto me, and I stifled a scream. I bit down on my lip, but I was wailing on the inside.

  “Davy?”

  I shook my head, holding a hand up to Gavin. I’d be fine. Answers. Answers. I focused on that. Wren wanted answers, well, so did I. I waited out the pain, then lifted my gaze to Tracey’s, and I asked one word. “Stopped?”

  She nodded. “I thought you died. I was carrying you when you suddenly stopped breathing.”

  “And you continued to hold her?”

  Tracey shot Wren a dark look. “I wasn’t going to let him have her body. She wasn’t slowing me down.”

  “But you said they were going to catch you,” Wren spoke.

  Tracey nodded. “They would’ve, but then,” her hand lifted toward me, “we were on this mountain.”

  “I was dead?”

  “You weren’t alive.”

  I couldn’t—I’d been dead. Had The Immortal left me? Was I only an empath now? A cold shiver of panic wound down my spine, but I shook it off. I wouldn’t start thinking about that, not until I knew for certain. “How long?”

  “A day.”

  “A day?” I was gutted. I was dead for an entire day?

  “She’s The Immortal. How is that possible?”

  Tracey looked at Wren. “I don’t know. I didn’t think it was, but she had no heartbeat. But she’s alive again, so I guess it doesn’t matter.”

  But she didn’t sound so certain. Neither was I. I always had a heartbeat. Always. Not having one—I didn’t want to not be a human. I’d completely become The Immortal then and I knew that wasn’t right. I needed to hold onto my humanity as long as I could. A heartbeat was part of that.

  “Davy,” Gavin said.

  I looked to him.

  He said, “We need to decide our next move.”

  Wren snorted. “Leave. Get back to Roane as fast as possible.”

  Gavin didn’t look at her. He was waiting for me, and I knew what the unspoken question was. Kates. We had left her behind.

  Raw emotion rose up, threatening to choke me
. Like the panic, I shoved it away. I needed a clear head. “Where is Gregory?”

  Tracey answered, “He’s on point, watching.”

  “We’re twenty miles away. I think we’re safe, for now.” Wren threw both a disgusted look. Her anger melted into pure impatience.

  I nodded. Okay. So this was the decision that had to be made. “We go back—”

  “Go back?” Wren echoed me. “To die?”

  I ignored her and finished, “—for Kates or . . . we continue forward, hopefully toward Roane.”

  “Can you sense him?”

  I couldn’t even sense The Immortal, much less my lover. I wasn’t going to say that, though. I shook my head. “I’m too tired, I think.”

  “You need to rest,” Tracey said.

  “We need to move.” Wren shook her head at both of them. “We move or die. Those are the options we have.”

  “Not if we have her at full strength.” Gavin indicated me. “If we have an Immortal at full strength, we can fight back.”

  “We’re in Mori territory. They’re going to find us.”

  He shook his head. “It’s Davy’s call. We do what she wants.”

  “I want to go back.” Tracey cut through any more argument. Wren’s mouth hung open, and before she could say anything, Tracey added, “I wanted to stay behind. My niece is there. I want to know her.”

  “Your niece?”

  Tracey looked at me and said, “If you go back for Kates, I’ll go with you. I’ll fight at your side.”

  “As will I.” Gavin stepped beside her. The two were in solidarity and both turned to Wren.

  She shook her head. “We’ll die.”

  “Not if she can rest.”

  Wren clipped out, “We go to Roane. He’s coming for us. He’ll have an army with him. We can go back for the traitor and your niece, but with him. We’ll have numbers on our side.” Her voice rose. “We’ll have a fighting chance. These are Mori vampires. You guys are forgetting that. They’re not like us. We’re lucky we got free at all. They’re a force all at once. They fight as one being. We’ll never win, with or without a rested Immortal on our side.”

  She was right. I looked to Gavin and Tracey. They both knew she was right, but they’d do what I said. They believed in me the way they believed in Roane. The same loyalty Wren felt for her leader hadn’t transferred to me, but it didn’t matter. Even though Gregory wasn’t in the cave with us, he would do what I said. That was his way.

  It was my call, and as Wren turned to me, reluctance written all over her face, I knew she knew it as well.

  I said, “Let’s rest. For now.” That was all I could say.

  ROANE

  “Vampire.”

  Two days earlier, Roane would’ve been surprised at the sudden appearance of Davy’s blue-clad mysterious friend, but as he was standing on the cliff, overlooking the camp, he was starting to recognize when she’d appear. A slight buzzing would fill the air and feeling the same sensations this time, he merely looked over as she was standing next to him. The wind was fierce where they stood, high above the others, so her blue-tipped black hair was immediately flowing behind her. She gazed out over the cliff’s edge. “You take point up here because of the wind, not just because of the view.”

  It wasn’t a statement, and Roane didn’t respond. He was up there for other reasons. Yes, he could smell any enemy approaching better from there, and yes, he could see beyond their camp better, but he was also up there because it would’ve been a spot that Davy would’ve loved. It was the highest vantage point where he could see as far as possible, and if she was within range and if she happened to send him a signal, he wanted to be in the best possible spot to see it.

  As it was, he gazed back over the horizon and it was only mountains, trees, and a river’s glimmer sparkling from the moonlight’s reflection. There was nothing in the distance, nothing that he was hoping to see.

  “Who are you looking for?”

  He gazed back at her and still didn’t answer.

  Saren narrowed her eyes and folded her arms over her chest. Her leather made a swooshing sound as her arms rubbed over the material. “Answer, Vampire.”

  “Why?”

  Her head cocked to the side. “What do you mean why? I asked you a question.”

  Roane was growing tired of her impatience and condescension. Seeing her reaction, he hid a grin, but answered, “I don’t owe you answers to anything, so why would I start reporting to you now?”

  Her eyebrows furrowed together and the corners of her mouth curved down. “I do not understand what is going on right now. What is happening?”

  He sighed. “I’m giving you ‘attitude.’”

  “Why?”

  “Because you’re not my boss.” Roane shook his head, turning back to continue searching the land beyond them. He hadn’t had a boss for a while. Going rogue from the Hunters’ Line was freeing, but nerve-wracking. He knew they would come for him, along with Jacith’s army. And, suddenly, as if feeling them hot on his trail, he almost imagined seeing them moving along the trees. They would’ve been moving silently, like ghosts, approaching their camp with near perfection. He knew they weren’t out there, not yet, but they were coming. Their camp had been traveling at a fierce speed, but they needed to rest. One more night of rest, then another full week of going hard. The vampires could handle it. They were letting the wolves catch up.

  And Saren must’ve felt the same because she said, “We shouldn’t stay long. Davy is in trouble. I sought you out to remind you of the importanc—”

  Roane had a hand at her throat before she could finish that sentence. Her eyes widened from the quick turn of events, and she looked down at the arm. Before she could respond, Roane leaned forward and growled, “Do you think I don’t know?”

  “We must keep going.” She spoke stiffly, her eyes lifting and holding Roane’s gaze. A fire started in her eyes. It sparked, but it was pulled down to a simmer. It was there. It was burning. The flames were bright, but she was keeping it contained. “The Immortal thread is separating from Davy. The sooner we get there, the better.”

  Roane tilted his head to the side. The growl was still there, but he muted it. His hand dropped, releasing her suddenly. A normal being would’ve fallen from the abrupt departure, but Saren held still. He asked, “What do you mean? The thread is separating? I didn’t think that was possible.”

  “It’s the witches.”

  “The witches?”

  “I was able to connect to Davy, and the last time was when your brother,” she spat the last two words, “had a coven working to pull the thread out of Davy.”

  Roane wasn’t surprised to hear that Lucan was trying to pull the thread out of Davy, but he was surprised about two other items. His nostrils flared. “You can connect to her?” His hand started to curve again. He wanted to grip her by the throat once more and squeeze until she gave him all the information she had. She was keeping this from him, keeping a part of Davy from him. He was
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