Read Twice Cursed Online

Authors: Marianne Morea

Tags: #werewolf, #werewolf and vampire, #werewolf family, #werewolf paranormal romance, #werewolf romance vampire romance paranormal romance thriller urban fantasy, #werewolf romance werewolves and shifters, #werewolf and vampire romance, #cursed by blood series, #urban fantasy suspense, #werewolf saga

Twice Cursed (42 page)

BOOK: Twice Cursed
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Lily shot him a dirty look, catching
his eye, and the man’s gaze drifted over her appreciatively. “I can
see why Jack’s got a thing for you,” he said, his eyes lingering on
the swell of her breasts.

Disgust left her throat, and he
chuckled. “Why don’t you make it easy on yourself, baby, and
cooperate? And don’t do anything stupid like trying to reach lover
boy again, not unless you want your brain to fry. Jack’s blocking
frequency can be a little temperamental.”

A feral hiss screeched through the
air, pulling his attention, and both he and Marcus dropped the
body, running for cover under the arch. Jack swore under his
breath. “You pussies! The vamp bitch could be anywhere in the
park!”

The dead guy’s feet landed adjacent to
where Lily sat still on the ground, and she fixed Jack with a scowl
when he glanced at her. “Améile’s coming for you, Jack. You killed
another vamp tonight and she knows your scent from the last time,
remember?”

Ignoring her, Jack kicked at Leon’s
lifeless feet, hoisting him up to drag him toward the stairs, and
yelling for his men as he struggled. “Come help me, you two, or I
swear I’ll feed you to the vamps myself.”

Lily gritted her teeth, waiting for
him to get a little closer. Taking advantage of his inattention,
she shot her leg out, nailing Jack behind the knees, sending him
crashing down on his back, smacking his head on the pavement. The
minute he hit the ground, she was on her feet, diving for her gun
in the corner.

He rolled to his side, quickly pushing
himself up and yanking Lily by the shoulders, tossing her back
against the stone structure like a ragdoll. “You bitch, I’m
bleeding! And with all these vamps around…Arrgh!” Jack hissed, his
hand moving to the back of his head.

Jack used her momentum against her,
but she had some skills of her own. Exhaling hard, she kept her
wits and prevented her wind from being knocked out. At the last
second, she threw her arms over her head and pressed her chin to
her chest, deflecting the impact to her rounded shoulders instead
of her lungs. Jack shouted for the others again, raising his leg to
sidekick her in the ribs, but Lily was ready.

She sucked in a breath and dropped her
forearm in a downward shunt, blocking his kick and throwing him off
balance. Turning the tables, she used his momentum against him now,
and swept his supporting leg out from under him. He crashed to the
pavement dropping her crossbow, and she scrambled to pick it up
before he rolled to the side and beat her to the punch. All bets
were off as she unlocked the safety and pointed the razor’s edge of
the loaded weapon at Jack’s heart, but another screech sounded,
this time directly from above.


Cochran, wake up! Vampire
12:00!” Marcus shouted.

Perched on the extreme edge of the
stone turret above them, was Améile. She had completely
degenerated. Even the stringy hair that clung to her scalp had
rotted away, leaving her nothing more than a skeleton with fangs. A
cooing sound echoed from behind her, and all eyes watched as her
progeny slid up next to her, resting her head on her maker’s bony
shoulder, her fingers lovingly around Améile’s exposed
ribcage.


Kill the bitches or we’re
all dead!” Jack shouted, pushing himself to his feet, one of Lily’s
stakes in his hand.

The redhead’s chin lifted, and she
sniffed the air, her nostrils flaring. Her eyes tracked Jack as he
crouched, waiting for an attack.


Fuck! She smells the blood
from my scalp,” he said, his eyes narrowing at Lily in a death
look.

On the balls of her feet, Lily slid
into a defensive stance, adjusting her grip on the crossbow. The
feel of the string in her fingers gave her focus and strength as
she pulled it back, relocking it into place. Where the hell was
Sean? She didn’t need telepathy to know he was going crazy trying
to reach her. If she felt pain on her end, he probably did, as
well. Or maybe he sensed nothing but dead air. Either way, she was
on her own. If she tried to reach him again, the pain would disable
her, and she couldn’t afford to lose the small edge she’d just
gained.

Lily glanced from Jack to his men, her
mind running the averages. If she shot one of the Weres, the blood
would draw the vampires, and she’d have a chance at staking at
least one, but that left the other for her to deal with, and even
in a weakened state, the vampire was still too strong.

Shifting her gaze to the turret, she
watched the vampires, taking in every nuance of their behavior.
They were wrapped up like mother and child, with the redhead
tucking herself under the other’s arm, while she still tracked
Jack’s every move.

Lily focused on the redhead, as there
wasn’t enough of Améile’s face left to give any semblance of
expression. The younger vampire was completely ensconced by the
other. If Lily took out the mother, there would be a split second
of shock before the daughter attacked. In her rage, she would lose
focus and Lily could nail her then. If she missed, it was anyone’s
game.

Lily took aim at Améile’s exposed
ribs. If she could just angle the trajectory, she could hit her
dead in the heart. She lowered her chin and held her breath, her
own pulse beating in the tips of her fingers on the
trigger.

The stake soared through the air,
hitting its mark, and Améile’s body jerked back. Her arms flew
wide, and a bloodcurdling shriek echoed through the night. If that
didn’t bring Sean and Sébastien, nothing would. Lily had just
killed the master’s progeny, and she had no doubt he’d felt it. The
tainted vampire burst in a cloud of ash, the particles wafting in
the breeze, almost peaceful in the way they floated
along.

The redhead stood on the turret like a
disheveled goddess, her hair billowing out and her eyes blazing
crimson. Lily took cover, pressing her back against the stone, her
black clothing giving her just enough camouflage for the vampire’s
scrutiny to pass her by.

Instead, the redhead settled on the
largest of Jack’s men, swooping down like the angel of death,
snapping his neck as he turned to run. Her jaws opened, exposing
lethal fangs dripping with yellow, fouled saliva, and she drained
him in seconds, tossing his dried husk of a body to the
side.

Her nostrils flared, and she turned in
Jack’s direction, her head jerky and puppet like. He was still
bleeding, and her eyes opened wide with recognition and deadly
thirst. “You!” she slurred. “You smell like my mother’s
tormentor!”

Wild-eyed, she launched herself at
Jack, her fury overriding her instincts. She never saw the stake in
his hand. The redhead crumbled to the floor, Améile’s name on her
lips as her body imploded.

Jack slumped against the stone
battlement, panting. “Marcus, let’s go. Grab Lily and let’s get the
hell out of here. The master vampire will be here any minute. We
just killed his daughter and granddaughter, and I guarantee he’s
not going to be happy about all this.”

Lily dive rolled over Leon’s corpse,
and got to her feet at the entrance to the stairs. Without looking
back, she clamored down the steps, but Marcus was on her heels,
tackling her at the bottom. Her head snapped back, slamming against
the stone, and the last thing she registered was the scent of fresh
blood and stale urine.

Jack ran down the stairs after them,
stopping short at Lily’s prone body. “Please tell me, you didn’t
kill her.”


She’s not dead, just
unconscious.”


Good. Now let’s get her
into the van. It’s parked in the trees of the 79th Street
Transverse Road.”


What about Leon and Tony?”
Marcus said, gesturing up the stairs. “We can’t just leave them.
They have family back in Maine.”

Jack snarled, pushing past Marcus to
hook his arms under Lily’s shoulders. “Are you insane? I may have
said Sean was stupid and weak, but only when it comes to her,” he
said, jerking his chin toward Lily. “He didn’t get elected alpha
for nothing. Don’t underestimate him. By now he knows Parr is
behind this set up. What he doesn’t know, is that I’m part of it
too, and unless Edward has sold you out, Sean doesn’t know about
you either. Don’t fuck this up. It ain’t over till it’s
over.”

Chapter
Seventeen

 

***

 

Sean paced back and forth on the
castle terrace, Lily’s gun and crossbow in his hand. Her scent and
the scent of blood were everywhere, yet the only thing that stopped
him from going crazy, was that it wasn’t her blood.


My enemy is behind this. I
know it,” he said to Rémy, putting Lily’s weapons down to turn the
two prone bodies over one by one. “These two were his lackeys.” He
gestured toward both with a frustrated wave.

Sébastien was above them, lingering
over the pile of ash on the top of the turret. He had Lily’s small
stake in his hand. With a sigh, he floated down to land beside
Sean.


Ah, what a sad night for
us all. My Améile is dead,” he said with a sniff. “However, at
least I know she didn’t suffer in the end.” He opened his hand to
show Sean the petite silver tipped weapon.

Rémy took the tiny stake from
Sébastien’s hand, careful not touch the silvered tip. “Clever
workmanship. Almost scary in its practicality.”

Sean nodded. “Lily made that, and I
can assure you Améile did not suffer. My alpha female may be small,
but she’s strong and smart, and her aim is flawless,” he replied,
placing his hand on Sébastien’s arm.


Yes. It is a precise
weapon. It’s easy to see it was intended to be both lethal as well
as compassionate. Not unlike its designer, eh.” He glanced at
Sean’s pained face.


As to the redheaded one, I
guess we’re not meant to learn her identity, though I’m sure she
died as quickly and as painlessly as my Améile,” Sébastien said,
bending to pick up another stake. “But whoever killed Chen doesn’t
deserve the same swift justice. Such a heinous thing, to take
someone’s heart.”

Sean didn’t comment, just stared out
at the black water.

Sébastien followed his gaze and slid
his arm around the wolf’s shoulder. “You think me a hypocrite to
say such a thing, considering a vampire’s nature. Well, perhaps,
but some of us still hold respect for other species, and respect
for living as well as for the undead. I have learned much from you
this past night, my lupine friend, and it will not be forgotten.”
The vampire turned to glance up at the turret head again. “Your
lady has done us a great service, and soon your wolves will help us
deal with the aftermath. I am indebted.”

Sean inclined his head. “Thank you,
Sébastien.”

The vampire glanced out over the water
towards the east. “The sun will be rising soon. I must get my
people to shelter. I wish I could accompany you to Maine and help
you avenge tonight’s treachery. There is nothing more unsettling
than to learn those you have trusted and loved, are false. The
crime deserves the most painful sort of death, in my
opinion.”

Sean sighed. “Unfortunately, in this
instance, I have to agree. I’ve already briefed my
second-in-command. My problem is, I can’t reach Lily, I can’t feel
her mind. It’s void, though I know in my heart she’s not
dead.”

Rémy clapped him on the back. “She is
a very clever woman and a talented little witch. Though I am loath
for you to tell her I said as much.” He chuckled. “She will find a
way to reach you, I’m sure.”


Thank you Rémy. And I
promise you both, if I find who is responsible for Chen, I will be
happy to lay them at your feet.”

The vampire laughed out loud, his
ruined face like a perverse version of the theatrical comedy and
tragedy mask. “I will hold you to that.” He clasped Sean’s arm the
way Sébastien had when he’d first greeted them. “Go. You have a
long way to travel and wolves cannot fly!” With a mischievous wink,
he launched himself into the air and circled around toward the
western sky. “Goodbye, my friend, and Godspeed,” his voiced
whispered on the wind.

Sébastien clasped Sean’s arm as well.
“Godspeed indeed. And you are always welcome. No parlay necessary.”
With a chuckle, he launched himself into the air, his call to his
people echoing like a lark’s song in the air.

 

***

 

Lily’s chin was pressed into her
chest, and her head throbbed. Half awake, she cracked one eye open,
but closed it again, too tired to sustain the effort. Her shoulders
ached and her arms were stiff. Unusual smells tickled her nose, and
she sneezed, her arms jerking in the process from where she’d been
bound. Completely awake, she opened both eyes, the realization
dawning that she’d been strung up like a side of beef.

Why was Jack holding her in a barn?
Didn’t he say she was the bargaining chip he and Parr needed to
lure Sean back to the compound? Hell, she didn’t even know if she
was in Maine.

Her mouth was a dry crust, and her
tongue had cemented itself to the roof of her mouth, but she forced
herself to look around, peeling her tongue down from her inside
palate. A dull ache throbbed at the back of her skull, and tiny
pins and needles bit into her hands and arms where she was tied at
the wrists above her head.

BOOK: Twice Cursed
7.65Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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