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What must he overcome to protect her?
With no clue of what to do next and the responsibility of looking after Alex and Mia as promised, Kale is up to his ears in problems and no solutions. How will Kale save Ella, keep Alex and Mia safe, control Jace as well as control the Bloodlust that creeps beneath the surface waiting to be released? Will Kale be Ella’s savior or will he convict her to a fate worse than the one Laurent has already promised her?
What truths will she learn?
Ella knows that the choices she makes affects not only her but everyone else around her, but what about the choices made to find her? Ella learns the truth about the death of her parents, learns that the ones she thought she could trust aren’t so trustworthy after all.
How will Ella handle these betrayals, and will she be able to sacrifice what is necessary to obtain eternal life?
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2013 © Inger Iversen
“Ella,” Kale said.
I stopped short.
“We will talk about this when you come back down tomorrow.” His tone held no room for discussion, but I would fight him on this. He would fade away and leave me here to mourn him.
I could only stare at him. Deacon looked nervously between the two of us, and he was the only reason I didn’t lay into Kale. “There is nothing to talk about. I’m not leaving you here to rot in this cell, the same way you didn’t leave me with Laurent. I know what I want from this, and that’s you. We will figure out a way to make it work.”
I headed out the door without looking back. Jace stood in the hallway, waiting for me. He hated bringing me down here. He worried that Kale wouldn’t be able to resist temptation and break through the bars to attack me, although we already knew that he couldn’t get out unless the door was opened for him.
Little did Jace know he was worried about the wrong person opening those damned bars. I missed the feel of Kale’s arms around me and his kiss. I was so angry that I couldn’t touch him that sometimes I wanted to risk opening those doors, if only for a second.
“Let’s go?” Jace asked.
“No, I need to wait for Deacon.” I passed Jace and headed towards the living area.
“Why? You just saw him. What do you need to say to him that you couldn’t have said to him down there?” He looked annoyed. He hated coming here, but that was part of the agreement when I said I would leave and stay at the lodge with him.
I rolled my eyes. “None of your business, Jace.” I continued past him to the restroom.
When I was done, I entered the living room where Mia was sitting on the sofa. Deacon was leaning against the bar, smiling into his phone. I smiled. He and his girl were great together, even with the threat of La Luxure.
I stood off to the side, willing him to look at me. When he did, I pointed to the door, silently asking him to meet me outside. He nodded. I put on my coat and headed out the glass door. He followed me.
“I need you to take me to the Council.”
Deacon’s eyes widened, and he shook his head no.
“I need to figure out how Kale and I can stay together, and I only have one solution for this.”
Deacon frowned. “Look, Ella—”
“No, you look. I know you would do whatever it would take to be with Chelle. You would kill, maim and fight, and all I’m asking you to do is help your best friend do the same.”
“Yeah, you are right, but you seem to forget something, here.” Deacon placed his arms across his chest and towered over me. He was intimidatingly massive, but I knew he wouldn’t hurt me. “I am not your best friend. My best friend has already made his request of me, and I’ve followed through. We made this plan before you came back in order to protect you, and I promise you, there is nothing you can say or do to make me go back on my part of the deal.” Deacon’s tone was rough and unyielding, and a part of me broke.
Though I didn’t show it, I could feel my heart tearing in two. Jace couldn’t help me; he’d finally admitted that his “sabbatical” from the Council meant he’d defected. Darke was missing and presumed dead.
Deacon, my last hope, was turning me down.
His lips thinned as he moved closer to me. “Don’t do that.”
My brow furrowed in confusion. “Don’t do what?” Why was my voice nothing but a whisper? I needed to be stronger—I had to be.
“Cry. Please don’t cry.” His voice had softened, but his gaze still didn’t waver.
I touched my cheeks, surprised to find them wet. I sighed and turned away. Deacon didn’t need to see me cry, and though I wanted to use my tears to make him bend to my will, I knew that that wasn’t going to work with him.
“Tell me why you want me to defy Kale and take you to those people.”
Jace came outside. He looked from me then to Deacon, no doubt wondering why I was crying. His expression hardened, and he held his hand out to me. “Let’s go, Ella. Please.”
“Start the car. I will be out after I say goodbye to Kale.” I turned back to the pensive Deacon. Jace stood there for a moment longer before he turned around and headed back into the house.
Deacon stared at me. Not only had I not convinced him to help me, he might actually relay my request to Kale.
“Just think about it, Deacon. If I can get Aleixandre to change me into an immortal, then Kale and I would have forever to figure out how to keep La Luxure at bay.”
Deacon’s gaze held mine and betrayed nothing of his thoughts.
“It’s my only option. I know that he is strong enough to beat this, and I think if he has something to look forward to… well, then maybe he will try harder, fight harder— Hell, I don’t know, but I can’t do this without him, and I can’t do it without you.” I place my arm on his. “Please. Please just think about it.”