Read Renegade: Volume 2 Online

Authors: Ella Price

Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Genre Fiction, #Horror, #Dark Fantasy, #Romance, #Fantasy

Renegade: Volume 2 (4 page)

BOOK: Renegade: Volume 2
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Nick
took me back to my car and we parted ways. I promised to call him and let him
know what my next move would be when I figured it out myself. I drove back to
my uncle’s house. I needed to sleep and try to regroup. I wasn’t sure what I
was going to do next. I called Colin on the way home and he had nothing new
either. Whoever killed the couple was keeping quiet.

I
walked into the house and Luca was waiting for me. “What’s wrong?” I asked when
I saw the expression on his face.

He
shook his head. “It’s been a long night. Where have you been?” he asked
watching me.

I
shrugged. “Out, just patrolling. Why?”

“Your
uncle wants to see you.” He sounded like he knew something, but he wasn’t
telling me.

I
nodded and walked to my uncle’s office. Luca followed me. I walked inside and
my uncle was sitting at his desk. Kai was sitting in a chair not far from him. “What’s
going on?” I asked looking from Kai to my uncle.

“Tanner
is hurt. He was bit by a vampire.” My uncle sounded terrified as he spoke. It
was never good when a hunter got bit; especially if it was by a powerful
vampire.

“Who
did it?” I asked angrily. I would go out now and hunt the bastard down and my
uncle knew it.

“It
was a death marshal Lillian. He has Tanner in a coma. He claims he won’t
release his hold until Aubrey turns himself in,” Kai said softly. Kai sounded
just as worried and shocked as my uncle did.

I
felt my throat go dry at the mention of a death marshal. “What were his terms?”
I asked quietly.

“We
have until midnight tonight to convince Aubrey to surrender or Tanner dies.
Your Aunt is upstairs with Tanner now. I don’t think she has stopped crying,”
Luca said tiredly.

“Have
you spoken to Aubrey?” I asked keeping my tone even. The thought of Aubrey
dying made my chest ache. I hated the feeling, but I couldn’t get rid of it no
matter what I told myself.

“Yes,
he has agreed to surrender. We are planning the exchange. It will occur here
and we were hoping you would be present as backup,” my uncle said watching me. He
had to know I wouldn’t just stand by and allow this. I didn’t have a whole lot
of options, but there had to be something I could do.

“How
can you just let him surrender,” I asked angrily.

“It
is that or Tanner dies! Which do you prefer?” my uncle snapped glaring at me.

I
watched him for a minute. I had no clue what to do or say. “Neither,” I growled
then stormed out. I wasn’t going to stand by and let this happen. There had to
be something I could do to stop the marshal. I hurried outside and got back in
my car. I sped back toward the warehouse. I was hoping Colin would have
answers.

 

The
warehouse was emptier than usual because the sun was coming up. I walked back
to the office, but Colin was nowhere to be found. I yelled in anger and threw a
chair into a shelf full of books. The chair clattered to the floor followed by
several books. I placed my hands flat on the desk and closed my eyes as I took
deep breaths. I couldn’t choose. I couldn’t let Tanner or Aubrey die. In a way
this was all my fault.

“You
could have punched one of the bags if you are angry instead of damaging my
office,” Colin said dryly as he walked in and surveyed the damage.

“A
death marshal attacked Tanner. He is holding him in some kind of trance until
Aubrey surrenders. There has to be something I can do,” I said angrily without
looking up. I felt the urge to cry just below the surface. I felt helpless as I
supported myself with the desk.

“There
is something you can do,” Colin said smoothly as he took a seat behind the
desk.

I
looked up at him confused. He seemed unsurprised by what happened. He sounded
certain there was something I could do, but I just didn’t see it. “What could I
possibly do? I could attack him and probably end up dead, then knowing my luck
he would kill both Tanner and Aubrey,” I said angrily. He was acting like this
wasn’t a serious matter.

He
took a key out of his pocket and unlocked the desk drawer. “There is always a
way Rayne. It all comes down to what you are willing to do.” The way he spoke
suggested he had an idea. I couldn’t help but feel a small amount of hope at
the prospect. He laid a box on the desk. It was a wooden box that had ornate
carvings. He unlocked it and turned it toward me.

He
opened the box and I straightened and glared at him. “Those are against the
hunter’s laws,” I growled as I looked at the two ivory handled handguns laying
in the velvet case. The use of guns was against our code. It was too simple to
kill a vampire with a silver bullet. To my people it was dishonorable. If we
wanted the kill we had to fight for it.

“Like
I said it is all about what you are willing to do,” he said matter of factly.
“These guns were your fathers. He, like you had a decision to make.”

“And
he’s dead,” I countered. I didn’t see how he thought this was a resolution. I
would be able to kill the marshal with the guns, but then I would be banned
from the hunters like Colin was. Killing the marshal would only bring more
havoc, but the alternative was Tanner or Aubrey’s death.

“He
is dead because he doubted himself. He left these behind that night, and they
won because of it. He listened to your damn uncle who has always been a kiss
ass. You don’t need the hunters Lillian! You need to stand up for yourself and
the people you care about. This is your choice. Follow the rules and watch your
loved ones die. Become a true renegade and save everyone you care about. It
doesn’t seem like that hard of a choice to me.” He sounded angry like I was
being unreasonable.

The
hunter’s laws were all I knew. I didn’t always follow them to the tee, but I
didn’t violate them to the point that there was no going back. “I don’t know if
I can do this,” I said quietly.

“Then
choose who dies,” he said simply as he leaned back in his chair. “Just know it
won’t stop here. People you care about will continue to die; like your parents
did, until you do what you have to and keep them safe.”   

I
looked at him, then back down at the guns. I knew he was right even though it
was difficult to admit it. I ran my fingers over the initials on the gun. They
were L. A. R for Lyle Alexander Rayne, my father. They were the same as my
initials. “What happens after I kill the marshal?” I asked looking back up at
Colin.

He
shrugged. “We prepare for the war that has been coming for years.”

I
couldn’t decide. I didn’t know what to do. “I need to talk to Aubrey,” I said
softly then walked out leaving the guns behind. I walked quickly to my car. I
knew exactly where he would be at this hour… the cafe.

 

I
pulled up in front of the café and as I suspected Aubrey was sitting in his
usual seat. He was so strange for a vampire. He did not follow the usual
patterns a master vampire did. He smiled at me like nothing was wrong as I
approached.

“Why
so serious Lillian darling?” he asked amused.

“Why
are you acting like there is nothing wrong?” I growled as I took a seat across
from him.

“There
is nothing wrong. Everything is occurring as we expected. The marshal arrived
for me as anticipated,” he said simply.

“How
can you be ok with dying? How could you just offer yourself up?” I was starting
to get upset at his cool demeanor. He was acting like it was just another day.

“I
am not ok with dying Lillian, but I do not see an alternative. It is the circle
of life as some would so nicely put it,” he said amused.

“It
is bullshit, and I will not stand by and let it happen!” I growled as I stood
angrily. I wasn’t going to sit here and listen to him tell me it would all be
ok. It wasn’t ok and it wouldn’t be ok unless I did something like Colin said.

“Lower
your voice Lillian,” he said softly. People were starting to look in our
direction because I was being so loud.

I
was about to start yelling louder, but Nick’s voice caught my attention. “Are
you ok Rayne,” he asked from behind me.

I
turned to look at him and he glanced nervously from Aubrey to me. “I’m fine,” I
muttered and walked back toward my car.

“Hey
wait up,” Nick called after me as he followed me.

I
didn’t really feel like dealing with him. I had bigger issues than a human
murder to deal with. I had to make a decision and decide what I was going to
do. “I am busy,” I said as I climbed into my car.

He
climbed in the passenger seat obviously refusing to let me go. “Well I’m not; so
I’ll tag along,” he said watching me.

I
scowled at him for a minute, but he didn’t flinch. I sighed and started my car.
He wasn’t going to take no for an answer. “Fine, do what you want,” I growled
as I set off.

“So
I have a new lead. There was a security tape at the neighbor’s house. I got a
picture of the guy we think committed the murders,” he said excitedly a she
pulled a picture out of his jacket.

He
handed it to me and I glanced at it. I was trying to drive at the same time,
but I wanted to see the photo. I felt my blood boil when I saw the picture. I
slammed on the brakes and cut a hard right so I could go in the direction of
the warehouse.

“Jeez
Rayne! Don’t kill us,” he said sounding worried as he buckled his seat belt.
“Do you know who it is?”

“I
know what he is, not who. He is a death marshal, and I am betting he is the one
I am currently having an issue with,” I said quietly.

“What?
How can you tell?” he asked as he took the photo back and looked it over.

“He
is wearing a necklace with their symbol. He is one of them, I am sure of it.” I
merged into traffic as I spoke. I could see Nick flinch like he was worried he
would die in a fiery car wreck.

“What
am I supposed to do about him?” he asked as he watched me.

“You
are going to do nothing except stay as far away from him as possible. No one
messes with death marshals. They tend to have free reign,” I said as I kept my
eyes on the road. I had made up my mind. I was going to kill the bastard. I
would worry about the consequences later.

“I
can’t just let him get away with it,” he countered. He actually sounded
offended that I asked him to walk away.

“He
won’t,” I said firmly as I looked at him.

I
could see his expression change when he realized what I meant. “Rayne, if he is
so big and bad what are you going to do?”

“I’m
going to kill him,” I said simply as I pulled up to the warehouse and put the
car in park. I climbed out without giving him time to reply.

He
hurried after me as I walked into the warehouse. “Rayne, I am new to all this,
but I thought the death marshals were bad. So bad your people didn’t go after
them.”

“My
people won’t go after him, but I will. I am not going to just turn my head like
my uncle because I am afraid. I am going to make him pay and anyone else that
follows him,” I said firmly as I walked into the office.

Colin
looked up at me. His expression darkened when Nick followed me in. “Why is he
here?” Colin asked sounding annoyed.

“He
brought me this. It is from the double murder,” I said as I took the photo from
Nick and handed it to Colin.

Colin
raised his eyebrows then set the picture aside and looked at me. “He has been
in town for a couple days then,” he said softly.

“I
need those guns,” I said watching him.

He
smiled and retrieved the box from the drawer. He slid it across the desk toward
me. “I think you are making the right choice.”

I
nodded. “I hope you’re right.” I took the box and walked out of the office. I
was going to go home and plan my next move. Come midnight I would be face to
face with the marshal. I needed a while to plan and prepare.

Nick
trailed behind me obviously unwilling to let me out of his sight. “What’s with
the guns?” he asked sounding more curious than anything.

“I
am going to use them to kill the marshal. It is against our rules to use guns,
but I am going to anyway because I refuse to allow him to do whatever he
wants.” I would have to get by Luca, Kai, and my uncle. I was pretty sure Luca
would suspect something. I wasn’t the type to just let things go. I got in my
car and Nick followed.

“Can
I help you?” he asked sounding both hopeful and nervous.

I
shook my head. “It is too dangerous and my family would suspect something if I
brought you around. Just keep you head low and stay away so I don’t have to
worry about you too.”

“You
would worry about me?” he asked smiling.

I
scowled. “Now isn’t the time.”

He
raised his hands in surrender. “Ok, ok, just drop me at my car,” he said still
sounding amused.

 

It
was close to lunch by the time I pulled into the driveway of my uncle’s house.
There were several cars. My uncle had called a meeting. He probably wanted back
up in case Aubrey didn’t show, or things didn’t go as planned. I was glad they
would be distracted. It would give me a chance to go unnoticed.

I
hurried up the stairs. I hesitated when I saw my aunt come out of Tanner’s
room. She was crying and Kate was comforting her. I couldn’t stand the sight of
her tears. It made my heart ache. I had to fix this. Once the marshal was dead
his hold over Tanner would be broken. I turned and walked to my room. I had
limited time to talk myself into this.

I
set the box on a shelf in my closet. I made sure the guns were loaded and
ready, but I didn’t place them on me yet. I wanted to go see Tanner. I was
hoping seeing Tanner would give me more resolve to go through with my plan.

I
left my room and walked down the hall to Tanner’s room. I slipped inside and I
was relieved to see no one else was in the room. He looked so pale and peaceful
lying in his bed. His eyes were closed. The only sign that he was injured was
the bite mark on his neck. The anger was stifling me. Seeing the bite and
Tanner lying there helpless made me furious. I clenched my fists so tightly I
felt my nails cut into my skin drawing blood. I could barely take a breath as
tears stung my eyes. All I could think was that this was all my fault.

“Anger
will kill you,” Aubrey said softly in my ear as he grasped my wrist.

I
gasped a little startled as I unclenched my fists. He was always sneaking up on
me, and I didn’t understand how he was able to do it so easily. “Anger
motivates,” I said softly.

He
moved closer to me. His lips brushed my ear as he whispered. “Please tell me
you are not planning anything stupid.”

“I’m
not,” I lied. I was pretty sure he knew I was lying. Vampires were good at deciphering
human emotions, and I knew I wasn’t in control of mine.

He
turned me to face him and I glared up him defiantly. He watched me, and I could
see he didn’t believe anything I was saying. His lips brushed mine. I leaned
forward deepening the kiss. I was sure I could kill the marshal now. Seeing
Tanner and touching Aubrey gave me strength. I felt a slight pinch in my arm,
and I tried to pull away from Aubrey. “I’m sorry, I couldn’t take the chance,”
he whispered against my lips.

I
looked up at him horrified as he released me. He was holding a needle and
syringe. The room started to spin as I stumbled backwards. He drugged me to
keep me away from the marshal. I couldn’t believe it. Anger and confusion came
over me, but it was too late. I could feel the drug working. I collapsed, and
he caught me. He cradled me and gently kissed my lips; then everything went
black.

BOOK: Renegade: Volume 2
7.42Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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