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Authors: Bilinda Sheehan

Wild Hunt

BOOK: Wild Hunt
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Wild Hunt
The Shadow Sorceress Book 4
Bilinda Sheehan

C
opyright
© 2016 by Bilinda Sheehan

All rights reserved.

No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the author, except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.

F
or those who
have stood with me in Hell

We will live on to fight another day as long as we have chocolate

Also by Bilinda Sheehan

T
he Shadow Sorceress Series

A Grave Magic

Blood Craft

Grim Rites

Wild Hunt

Touch of Shadow - Coming Soon

B
ond of Blood
and Shadow Series

Violet Line - Book One

Violet Code - Coming 2016

Want to know when the next book is coming?

T
o learn more
about this series and upcoming books join Bilinda’s mailing list for a chance to get ARCs, member giveaways and sneak peeks.

Website:
bilindasheehan.com

Email:
[email protected]

You can also keep up to date and follow her on Facebook

Chapter 1

I
flipped
through the wardrobe for what felt like the millionth time—really it was just the fifth but I was beyond frazzled and even once was one time too many. I stared down at the pathetic pile of clothes I’d left on my still plastic-wrapped new mattress.

Nic had decided enough was enough and he wasn’t going to take my excuses anymore. The thought of an actual date scared the hell out of me; it would be far easier to face any number of creatures King City had to offer, but I wasn’t so lucky tonight. Tonight the only monster I would have to slay was my own social ineptitude.

It didn’t help that Nic had refused to tell me where exactly we were going, which made it almost impossible to dress for the evening, a fact he conveniently refused to believe.

Grabbing the electric blue dress from the bed, I tugged it on over my head as the doorbell buzzed. “No, no, no,” I moaned as I fought with the zip. I still had time; he wasn’t supposed to be here until half seven.

Spinning on the spot, I stared over at the alarm clock on the new bedside table and groaned. Scratch that—I’d
had
time, but for some reason that time had been swallowed by the creature called indecision that lived inside my head. Fumbling with the zip, I contorted myself until my hand snagged the tip of the metal zip and I triumphantly dragged it up. Catching sight of my own reflection, I groaned. Not exactly the look I’d been going for, but it was going to have to do.

Skating across the floor in my bare feet, I charged from the bedroom as the doorbell buzzed once more. Pulling the door open, I tried to slow the hammering of my heart as I glanced up into Nic’s face. The second I saw his expression, my heart rate picked up speed.

His gaze drank me in, like a man half-starved, his eyes trailing up from my toes leaving me breathless as he finally met my wide-eyed stare.

“Perhaps we should stay in…” he said, the deep growl of his voice sending the butterflies in my stomach into overdrive.

“It’s too much, isn’t it? I told you I needed to know where we’re going if you expect me to dress appropriately.”

Nic shook his head and closed the gap between us in one stride, his hand catching the side of my face as he dipped his face low over mine. “That’s not what I meant at all and you know it,” he said with a hoarse whisper.

“I know, but I wanted to see what you’d do…” I managed to squeak out as his lips barely brushed mine.

We’d kissed before and I could still remember the punishing pressure of his mouth on mine; I wanted more but I couldn’t shake the voice in the back of my head that told me getting involved with him was a bad idea. Not just for me, but for him, too.

His lips met mine, our mutual passion instantly igniting. Clutching at the front of his jacket, I clung to him as he walked me backward into the apartment and slammed me into the wall. If it had been anyone else, it might have hurt, but all I could think about, focus on, was the feel of his kiss.

Nic pulled away and pressed his forehead to mine. The fact that he was breathing as hard as I was made me feel better. At least I had just as much of an effect on him as he had on me.

“If I don’t stop we won’t make it out of the apartment,” he said, “and that dress cannot be wasted.” He flashed a wide, predatory grin that caused my knees to turn to jelly.

“I just need to grab my jacket…” I said.

“And shoes?” he said, casting a quick glance down at my feet.

I curled my toes against the wood floor and nodded. Simply being close to him turned my brain to mush. How was I going to survive an entire night in his company if I couldn’t even remember shoes?

Sliding from beneath his arm, I darted toward the bedroom and grabbed a pair of low-heeled ankle boots. I eyed the spiked stilettos sitting forlorn in the back of the wardrobe. They’d been an impulsive purchase from a time when I’d been trying to be girly and feminine. I’d learned since then that just because they had a towering, spiked heel didn’t make them feminine, especially if you resembled some sort of new-born calf tottering around on them.

The new leather jacket I’d managed to pick up in a half-price sale completed the outfit. At least the black studded ankle boots didn’t look out of place with the leather jacket.

Eyeing my weapons belt, I glanced at my reflection in the mirror. There was no way to wear it and not ruin the effect of the outfit and the dress was figure-hugging enough to make it impossible to hide the blade anywhere.

No, I was just going to have to go unarmed…. That thought alone was enough to cause me to break out in a cold sweat.

It’s a date, Amber, you don’t need to be armed.

The voice was right, but it still didn’t feel right to scoop the weapons belt up and drop it into the brand new bedside locker. The gun, at least, was in the safe, so I didn’t need to worry about it.

It’s now or never,
I thought, and scooped up my purse from where I’d discarded it. Swallowing back my fear, I pushed back my shoulders and headed for the door.

At least I knew Nic liked the dress….

Chapter 2

S
liding
the last piece of pasta into my mouth, I let the zesty tomato sauce wash over my tongue, tingling my taste buds before the explosion of creamy ricotta and spinach spilled from the tortellini.

“How did you find out about this place?” I asked, surreptitiously scraping the last of the sauce from inside the bowl.

“I have a thing for Italian; I know all the best places,” he said, watching me knowingly.

“Liar,” I said with a grin as I gave up the pretence of being ladylike and licked the fork clean.

“Fine. I might have done some work for the owner when he was first trying to get this place up and running,” Nic answered as he copied my actions. “Dessert?” he asked. “They do a mean tiramisu….”

The sound of a cell phone buzzing broke through his question and my heart sank. Graham had promised he wouldn’t call unless it was an emergency.

Popping open my purse, I stared down at my dark cell phone. It wasn’t mine. I was so used to it always being my phone, I’d assumed.

“Yeah?” Nic’s voice had my gaze jerking up to meet his. It had been his phone, and from the expression he wore, it wasn’t anyone he wanted to speak to.

“I’m a little busy, Jason, I….” Nic trailed off and his expression darkened. His brother seemed to bring out the worst in him. Most people would be happy to learn their brother whom they’d thought dead was still alive. But Nic had blamed himself for Jason’s death, the guilt gnawing a hole in him, and when he’d discovered Jason wasn’t dead, that he’d been recruited as a witch hunter and had chosen to stay away…. Well, it wasn’t exactly a happy family reunion.

“Sort it yourself,” Nic said, snapping the cell phone shut.

“Everything all right?” I asked, the flinching around his eyes causing my chest to tighten.

“He’s insufferable; he just expects me to jump every time he demands,” Nic said, sliding the phone back into his jacket pocket before raising his gaze to mine. “I’m sorry, he’s just….”

“Family?” I suggested helpfully, my mind instantly conjuring an image of Lily. She was awaiting sentencing and the prison seemed to be holding her, but her reasoning behind handing herself in was beyond me. And she wasn’t exactly in a talkative mood, especially not to me.

Nic grinned and nodded, his hand sliding across the table toward me. “Exactly,” he said, wrapping his fingers around mine.

The shrill buzz of a cell phone broke the moment once more, but this time it was mine. I could always ignore it, but then again, the only person who would ring me was Graham and he had promised not to ring unless it was serious….

Nic nodded and moved back until his hands rested on his own side of the table. Slipping the cell phone from my purse, I answered the call and pressed it to my ear.

“This had better be good,” I said, my voice instantly betraying my irritation.

“We’ve got a case. You need to get down here,” Graham said without skipping a beat or even acknowledging what I’d said to him.

“Can’t someone else do it? This is my night off, Graham.”

I could practically imagine him shaking his head. “Not for this. I’m calling everyone in for this one,” he said, and this time I sat up and took note.

To call in every Elite officer meant something pretty big was going down and that I couldn’t ignore. “What are we dealing with?” I asked, gesturing to Nic to call one of the waiters.

“Just get down here,” he replied, and then the line went dead, leaving me to stare at it in surprise.

Graham was curt but it wasn’t like him to just hang up, especially without giving me the details of where the crime scene actually was. My cell phone buzzed with a text message and I glanced down at the half-coded street address.

“That’s two blocks from here,” I said in surprise and Nic shot me a curious glance. “When your brother rang you, did he tell you what he needed you for?”

Nic stared at me thoughtfully. “Not really. He just said there was a hunt and to get my ass over there but I cut him off before he could say where.”

I held out the cell phone to him and Nic’s eyes widened in surprise. “St Anne’s on Trinity—that’s where you put down that demon,” Nic said.

Nodding, I grabbed my purse and pushed up onto my feet. I’d put the demonic priest down and brought Mia back from the dead but I’d conveniently left that bit out of my statement. I hadn’t even told Graham and Nic everything, I didn’t fully understand what I’d done; how could I explain it to them and expect them to understand?

Sighing, Nic climbed to his feet and dropped a wad of bills on the table. “This isn’t quite how I expected the date to end,” he said, the disappointment in his words hurting my heart.

Closing the gap between us, I pressed my hand to his cheek and smiled. “It’s not what I wanted either, but we’ve got time. Hey, at least we managed to have dinner before the bodies started hitting the ground.” I forced as much brightness into my voice as I could but I couldn’t shake the creeping sickness that pervaded my psyche.

It couldn’t possibly be a coincidence; where magic, demons, and witches were concerned there was no such thing as coincidence. And another crime requiring the Elite occurring at a place where some seriously major magic had gone down?

Nope, this definitely wasn’t a coincidence.

“You’re right, we’ll simply put the date on pause. Pick it up after,” he said, the hunger back in his eyes as he stared down at me.

We both knew there would be no picking the date up later. Dead bodies had a way of killing the mood—but the look in his eyes still sent a shiver of desire racing through me and I didn’t try to stop the smile that curled my lips as he helped me into my jacket.

BOOK: Wild Hunt
7.99Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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