Sever (The Ever Series Book 3)(133)

By: C. J. Valles

“Come with me,” she whispers.

When she grasps my hand and does not notice the abnormal heat emanating from my skin, I rise wordlessly and follow her through the throng of bodies. At the door to the alleyway, she pauses, turning to wink at me before stepping outside. It is a cold night in New York City, and the passageway is empty as I allow the young woman to shove me against the brick wall and into the shadows. She presses her painted lips to mine, but I taste no desire—only the chemical components of her lipstick. Her hands grip my chest, and I wait for urgency or pleasure to take hold of me. After all, when my quarry is dead in a few hours time, and our battle for this world is all but over, this is how I could spend the rest of eternity. My jaw clenches as the thought causes emptiness to fill me.

“What’s wrong?” the young woman purrs, pulling away from me.

I look down at her, acutely aware of the chasm in my chest. Then, I hear the girl in Portland sigh in her sleep. Indifferent to the reaction of the young woman clutching at my chest, I push her away and shift into the small bedroom with the lavender-colored walls. I stare down at the sleeping form, one pale arm extended off the bed, small fingers clenched tightly.

Wren. Wren Sullivan. Daughter of Thomas and Caroline Sullivan, recently and acrimoniously divorced. An only child until the birth of a half brother, an infant she has yet to lay eyes upon. She is a good student. An avid reader. It only took a few moments time to learn all there is to know about this girl—with the exception of one thing: what it is about her that continues to draw me in and haunt my every thought.

I continue to watch her, waiting for my decision to become clear. Then, as the hours pass and the room gradually begins to brighten with the weak morning sunlight, I know this: I must protect her.

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