Read The Pack - Shadow Games Online

Authors: Jessica Sorrento

Tags: #vampires, #vampire, #suspense, #action, #paranormal, #magic, #werewolf, #werewolves, #new adult

The Pack - Shadow Games (4 page)

BOOK: The Pack - Shadow Games
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"Where did you get the glasses?" I managed to
get out between breaths.

"I take it you do not like them."

"No, I love them. Just not on you."

If a vampire in sunglasses was funny, a
vampire in sunglasses that was now self conscious about wearing
them was even funnier. Just as I started to calm down, Calder
pulled off his glasses and handed them to me.

As I slipped on the glasses and the world in
front of me darkened, Calder looked me up and down.

"They do look better on you. I like the way
you look."

I raised an eyebrow at his compliment. "You
like the way I look huh?" I threw my arms out and spun in a circle,
the hem of my dress catching in the wind and flattening out into a
disk as I turned. When I stopped, I caught Calder staring at my
legs.

He blushed and lifted his eyes. "In my
glasses. I like the way you look in my glasses."

Did I just cause a centuries old vampire to
get embarrassed? And was he really checking me out? Why was I
encouraging this?

"So you never answered me," I said as I
stared into Calder's striking eyes. "Where do vampires buy
sunglasses?"

Calder started walking. "I did not buy
them."

"So where did you get the glasses? Birthday
gift?"

Without looking at me, Calder answered. "I
took them from the first man I ever killed."

My good mood evaporated into the warm air. I
pulled the glasses off and held them as far away from me as I
could. "What the fuck Calder! Why would you give these to me?!"

He stopped and lowered his head as he turned
around. "Do you know what my position as First Fang entails?"

“I don’t care what you do!” I held the
glasses out to him in both hands. "Take your stupid glass back. I
don't want them!"

But instead of taking the spectacles, he
wrapped his hands around mine and looked me in the eyes. "It was
nearly a century ago. The man was guarding a prisoner. Aoife. She
was vampire. Beautiful, young."

As I looked into his eyes, they shimmered.
Was he tearing up?

Calder looked away as he continued to speak.
"Protecting the magic. That is a First Fang’s job. And that is what
we went to do that night. She was part of my detail. We were
tracking an item in the human world and were tasked with bringing
it back to Thiea.

It is not often that humans capture a
vampire. But these humans were waiting for us. They lured us to a
warehouse and we moved to retrieve it like we were trained. But
when we approached, gas filled the room. I shifted away as did the
three other vampires that were with us, but Aoife tried for the
item. She passed out from the gas."

Calder let go of my hands and wiped his eyes.
"We couldn't get back to her before the sun rose."

I looked at the sunglasses in my hands, then
back at Calder. I didn't know what to think. He didn't strike me as
a cold blooded murderer, yet the proof was in my hands. But from
the tone in his voice, he wasn't bragging. There was something else
going on here.

"What happened?" I asked.

"I went back the next night. I went alone.
The King had forbidden us to return, but I couldn't leave
Aoife."

Calder lifted his head and when I saw his
eyes, I took a step back. They had changed. No longer were they the
olive green orbs with a dash of red. Now his eyes burned a deep
red. They were the eyes of a madman. They reminded me of the
King.

"I tracked them, the humans, to a train yard.
I slipped past the perimeter and found Aoife in a boxcar. They had
her chained up and caged like an animal. Bright lights filled the
room. I think the humans thought they hurt my kind. And standing
outside of her cell was a man in a dark suit wearing those glasses.
He was laughing at her, taunting her.

She didn't look well. They had stripped her
of her armor and given her only her robe to cover herself. And when
I saw her, it was clear I was already too late. She had sun
sickness. There was nothing I could do for her."

"Sun sickness?"

Calder sighed. "I didn't want to talk about
this. You tricked me Miss Olivia."

"This isn't my fault! You were the one who
gave me ghoul glasses."

"You are right. To explain simply then, Thiea
and your Earth are different worlds, but connected through chaos.
Our planets collided long ago and became one. Your moon was created
from the collision. When the moon is out on Earth, magic is
stronger. That is why werewolves cannot resist the change during a
full moon and why normal humans seem to act a bit strange. The
crossover between our two worlds is at its strongest then."

"So no moon, no magic?"

"There is a faint trickle. Wolves can still
shift for instance. But for a vampire, it is not enough. If we are
still in your world when the sun comes out, we are cut off from
Thiea. It does not kill our bodies, but it poisons our souls.
Imagine what it would be like to suddenly go blind and deaf. To
lose all of your limbs. To lose your memories. To be... empty. That
is sun sickness. Death is kinder."

"That sounds horrible."

Calder took the glasses from my hands and
held them up. He stared into the dark lenses. "Aoife was a
shattered shell. And this man was laughing at her pain." Calder
closed his eyes and dropped the glasses back into my hands.

When he opened his eyes again, they were the
kind pimento eyes that I was used to. "I don't remember killing
him. But his glasses flew off in the fight. They landed in Aoife's
lap. I don't know if she recognized me when I unchained her. She
didn't speak. She wouldn't look at me. But she handed me the
glasses before she passed out. I got her back home, but her heart
simply stopped a week later."

"She meant something to you didn't she?"

"She was my sister."

Smooth Olivia. Real smooth.

"I'm so sorry. I didn't know."

"There is no way you could have known."
Calder smiled at me. "You remind me of her. Brave, headstrong."

"Thank you," I said, unsure as to how I
should take his compliment.

Calder reached for the glasses and I handed
them over. But instead of putting them away, he unfolded the golden
frames and slipped them back onto my face. "I was not lying when I
said they looked better on you."

I blushed and looked out at the foreign
landscape ahead of us. The more I learned about Calder, the harder
it was to deny my attraction. "So, are we going to get going or
what?"

"Would you still like to get your hair
enchanted?"

I nodded, then glanced down at my bare feet.
I wiggled my toes. "Any chance we could pick up some shoes as well?
I promise not to run away."

Calder started off for town. "As you
wish."

 

*****

 

Hours later and I was actually enjoying
myself. I used to have dreams about going to another country to
soak up the sights, but now I was in another world altogether.
Nothing was familiar, but everything still seemed close enough to
normal that I didn't feel too out of place. The sky was blue and
the leaves on the trees were green, but the air itself seemed
filled with electricity.

Good to his word, Calder took me to buy
shoes. Now I skipped around in beautiful sandals that matched the
dark green dress. We ate an early lunch and then it was off to the
enchanters where spells were woven into my hair. I opted for a less
extreme version of Calder's style. Instead of a full head of
magical hair, I went with highlights that shimmered and changed
colors, accenting my natural look.

And the enchanter didn't stop there either.
When Calder and the wizened old vampire who enchanted my locks
started to talk in their own sing song language, she picked up
immediately that I couldn't understand a word they were saying. But
with a quick incantation, I could understand and speak their
language or any other that I wished. This world was amazing.

After we left the enchanter, Calder turned us
back towards the castle.

"Do we have to go back already?" I asked,
feeling like a child as I did so.

Calder nodded as he glanced around. "We came
into town so you could be seen. Word will get back to the other
Lords."

I sighed as we started back. "Tell me about
them."

"Who? The vampire lords?"

I nodded. "If they are trying to kill me, I
guess I should know who they are."

Calder shook his head. "You would be wrong to
think so. They are not worth knowing." He gripped his sword handle
tightly. "Not beyond recognizing the danger they represent.
Besides, the Lords have armies to do their bidding. It would be
better if you knew of them."

"Then tell me about these armies."

As we walked, Calder talked. "There are only
three Lords who have the power to take the throne. And of the
three, only two truly want it. Of those two, Lord Marescu is most
dangerous. The men he commands have no honor. They act like wild
beasts, refusing weapons. They attack with tooth and claw."

I thought back to the night the vampires
first attacked us. Images of Sam on my couch, beaten and bloodied
filled my mind. I could see the claw marks on his face. And the
bite marks across his shoulders and down his arms were hard to miss
as well. I remembered how the black ichor leaked from his wounds
when McNaire cleaned Sam up.

I looked over at Calder, noting the way his
hand never left the hilt of his sword. And as I stared at the
gleaming blade, I remembered the night he stood outside of my
apartment. I remembered the fight between my wolves and Calder's
vampires. They swung swords and threw punches, but they never made
to bite anyone. And now that I looked back on the attack, I
wondered if they ever intended to kill Sam or McNaire during the
fighting.

I stopped walking, letting my mind run away
with itself. Since the first night back in the woods, I'd been
thinking that the same group of vampires had tracked me. But what
if they weren't the same?

I needed answers. "Were you in the forest the
first night?"

Calder's eyebrow rose. "Which forest? What
night?"

"The first night of the Blood Rite. Were you
the one who attacked Sam and the other wolves?"

His eyes narrowed. "I did not step into your
world until the night I took you. Nor did any of my men."

"And this other Lord, the one with the troops
who don't use weapons. Could he have known about the Rite before
you did?"

Calder's hand wrapped around the hilt of his
sword. His whole body tensed as he looked over my shoulder,
scanning for anything out of the ordinary. "He has the resources.
Why are you asking?"

I bit my lip as I answered. "We were attacked
by vampires the night before you showed up. They hurt Sam bad. They
killed half of my father's pack. And they didn't use weapons. Sam
was covered in bites when he was brought back to my apartment."

Calder's hand wrapped around my arm. In an
instant we were walking back to the castle as fast as my legs could
carry me. I was practically jogging as we moved.

"What is it? What's going on?" I asked as we
moved. "I thought we wanted to be seen!"

As soon as we were crossing the castle
bridge, Calder slowed down, relaxing before letting go of my arm.
"You weren't supposed to be in any danger today. I wanted you seen,
not harmed."

"So? I was seen. No one attacked us."

Calder shook his head. "We were lucky. If I'd
known about the forest... If they could track you on Earth, they
can track you here much easier." His hand ran across my arm as he
looked down at me with worry. "This changes everything. I cannot
let you leave the castle again."

I could see the fear in his face. And as I
stood next to him, something stirred within me. I'd thought I was
nothing more than a pawn to him and his King, but now that I saw
the hesitation in his eyes, I knew I was something more. Calder
wanted to protect me, and it was clear that it went beyond his
duty.

"What about the King?" I asked as we stood on
the steps of the castle. "I thought he wanted this."

"I only agreed to this plan so long as you
came to no harm. I cannot guarantee your safety any longer."

"So what? I stay locked up in the castle
until I die of old age?" Anger bubbled up inside of me. "I can't
stay here Calder! I want to go home!"

He sighed as he led me back into the castle.
"I cannot take you back Miss Olivia. Not until the danger has
past."

Thoughts of Sam filled my head, trying to
block out my strange feelings for Calder. If he was still alive, I
wanted to see him. And if I couldn't go home until this was over,
then there was only one thing I could do.

"We can't stop with the plan," I said as I
stood up straighter. "We have to go out again tomorrow."

"But you'll be in danger! Lord
Morescu "

I held my hand up, cutting off Calder before
he could finish. "I trust you Calder. I know you'll keep me safe.
And when this is all over, I want to go back home. Please."

The vampire sighed one last time. As he
walked me back to my room, he looked down at me with sad eyes. "As
you wish."

 

*****

 

 

It took me nearly an hour to get Calder to
agree to take me out of the castle the next morning. The vampire
was stubborn in his attempts to keep me behind the large stone
walls of the King's fortress. He promised me free reign of the
whole estate if I just stayed inside for the day, but I wasn't
having it. I needed to get back into town. I needed to be seen. And
I needed Calder's original plan to work so I could get back to Sam
where I belonged.

When he finally relented, he made me promise
that I would run back to the castle at the first sign of trouble.
If I saw anything, or anyone, suspicious, I would tell him. And he
made it clear, too clear, that above all else, my safety was what
was important. By the time we left the castle, I knew that Calder
would forfeit his life if it meant I could keep living mine.

BOOK: The Pack - Shadow Games
13.66Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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