Unbroken Page 2

When I get inside the house, I gently put her on the sofa in the living room. Aislin’s still gone, so I sit and wait for her while thinking of any possible way to fix this along with how the hell it has happened to begin with. The Mark of Malefiscus is only supposed to appear on those that are of evil descent, and Gemma can’t be; there’s no way.

So how did it get there? Did it appear like a normal mark does? Or did Nicholas have something to do with this? That damn Faerie seems to have some sick obsession with her. Or maybe it’s my father who put it on her. Is that where she disappeared to for the last few hours? Has he had her trapped while she’s been missing?

As she lies there, out of it on the sofa, I stroke her cheek softly. We used to be so close, but now it seems like we barely know each other anymore. It’s my own damn fault for letting everything get between us. A childhood friendship, one made of promises to be friends forever. Then, just because my father had said so, I’d let it go. And now I want it back. I want to tell her what we had… What I want… What do I want?

As I’m trying to figure that out, she starts to stir. I hold onto her arms, figuring I’ll let her come out of her daze before I put her back under so she can have a few minutes to recuperate. Suddenly, though, like the snap of a lightning bolt, her eyes shoot open and she springs upward onto the sofa. Our foreheads slam together like bricks smashing together. I fall off the edge of the sofa, blinking my eyes as my head starts to buzz, however Gemma doesn’t miss a beat. She jumps up and lands on top of me, crouched over me like a cave woman.

“I have to kill you,” she says in a numb voice, her hair hanging over her face, a rabid look in her eyes.

My fingers wrap around her wrists. “No, you don’t.” I know it’s probably useless to reason with her, but I have to try. “Just back off me and as soon as Aislin gets here, we’ll get you taken care of.” I hope.

She laughs that snide laugh I’m not fond of while throwing her head back. “Take care of me. Don’t be absurd.” She lowers her head, cocking it to the side as she eyes me over. “Besides, I don’t know why you’d want to change me.” She lowers her h*ps so she’s straddling me, then she places a hand on each side of my head. “I figured you’d like me like this better.” She leans in, her violet eyes looking more like a shade of dark lavender veering toward black. “Think of the things I could do to you.” She grabs my shoulders and her nails pierce my skin through the fabric of my shirt, drawing blood, and for a split moment, sheer ecstasy flows through my body… Maybe she knows me better than I thought, knows how to get under my skin… maybe I should let her…

I shake the thoughts from my head. This isn’t Gemma. Just a warped, evil version of her. “Is that what you want?” I slip my hands out from her hold and grab onto her hips, pressing my fingers into her skin. “To show me the things you could do to me? Because I thought you said you had to kill me.”

She seems both amused and confused by my statement, which gives me hope that my Gemma is still in there somewhere. “I don’t know…” She leans closer, like she’s going to kiss me. “…what I want to do.” Her lips touch mine and I don’t move, even when she sucks my bottom lip into her mouth and bites on it.

Fuck. This isn’t her. This isn’t her. That’s what I keep telling myself over and over again.

But I’m about to give in, flip her over, and tear off her clothes—the feel of the sparks, pain, and scent of her too overwhelming—when her fingers wander up my chest to my throat. Grasping tightly, she starts to strangle me, her grip tight as it restricts my airway.

“Like I said,” she whispers in my ear, her teeth grazing my lobe. “I have to kill you. I was just trying to have a little fun before I did.” As she continues to choke me, her free hand slides down my chest to my stomach, her fingers wandering all over my body. She smiles, enjoying herself, as I reach up and grab her arm.

“I’m sorry,” I whisper and her smug expression briefly falters.

“For what?” she asks, confounded.

“For this.” With one swift breath, I begin to drain the energy from her body, not taking it easy on her this time. I take as much as I can until her eyes roll into the back of her head, until her body slumps to the side, until her fingers leave my neck. Before she can fall to the floor, I hurry and sit up, catching her in my arms.

“I’m sorry,” I say again because I feel bad. She’s going to be out for quite a while, and when she does wake up, it’s not going to be the most pleasant experience.

Gathering her in my arms, I pick her up, carry her into the bedroom, and lay her down on her bed. Then I get the ties that hold the curtains up and bind them around her wrists and ankles, securing them to the bedposts as I attempt to ignore the fact that I’m enjoying this way too much.

After staring at her for longer than I should, I head through the house to check and see if Aislin has transported back, hoping she knows a spell that can remove marks somehow. But, when I step into her room, I realize I have much bigger problems then a possessed Gemma because my ex-girlfriend is sitting on the bed.

My ex-girlfriend that has the touch of death.

Chapter 3


“What the f**k are you doing here?” I ask as I stop in the doorway, knowing that space is always best whenever Stasha is around.

She’s sitting on the bed, her legs crossed, her blonde hair curled, and her hands covered with tan leather gloves. “Now is that any way to talk to an old lover?” she asks, faking a frown as she rises to her feet, her heels clicking against the hardwood floor.

“Old lover?” I question, bracing my hands on the doorframe. “I think you’ve gotten your words a little mixed up. We were never lovers, Stasha. You were just there to pass time when I was bored and I’m pretty sure you knew that.”

Her fake frown deepens as she slowly strolls around Aislin’s room covered with bags of herbs, candles, vials of powder and other Wicca ingredients. She’s pretending to simply glance around at everything, but I know Stasha well enough to know that everything she does is calculated and she has to be looking for something.

“You know, I’d say I was hurt by what you just said.” She runs her finger along the desk, pausing to look at Aislin’s open spell book. “But you know me well enough to know I don’t get hurt.” She cocks her head to the side, reading something on one of the pages. It makes me nervous. Stasha’s not a Witch, so I know she can’t actually cast a spell, yet I do know her well enough to know it’s not good for her to be interested in magic. Besides, if she does get a witch to cast a spell for her—which she easily could—it will be for her own benefit. And Stasha never wants anything good. Everything she does is based solely on greed.

I cross my arms and lean against the doorway. “Why are you here?”

She wavers, and then turns around with an innocent look on her face. “Who says I’m not just here to see you?”

“Why are you here?” I repeat, giving her a blank expression.

She rolls her eyes as she lets out a sigh, slumping back against the desk. “Oh, fine. Pretend to be annoyed that I’m here, but deep down I know you miss me,” she replies and I can’t help it, I laugh at her. She scowls at me, losing her cool.

If I’m not careful, then she could very easily take off the gloves and drain my life simply by touching me. At the same time, though, I don’t want to give her the satisfaction of letting her think she has the upper hand.

“I’m sorry,” I retort without any real sincerity. “Did I hurt your feelings?”

She narrows her eyes at me and seconds later she’s slipping off her gloves, taking out one finger at a time, attempting to torment me. “Need I remind you what I am, Alex?” She takes a few steps forward, holding the gloves in one hand. “What I can do?”

Despite how much I want to stand here and push her as much as I can, I also want to get her the hell out of the house. The last thing I need is a crazy ex-girlfriend of mine running around while my current girlfriend is possessed by what seems like the devil. It seems like that could be a disaster in the making.

“Tell me what you want,” I say, irritated.

She gives me a conniving grin, stopping just a few steps away from me. “Not without a price. You know that.”

“And why would I give you anything?” I ask, standing up straight. “Especially when I don’t even know if you’re here for a good reason or not.”

dpg is the wtg

She stretches her hands out in front of her, pretending to examine her nails. Blackish vines appear beneath her skin, curving all the way up her forearm. She’s channeling her energy to make it appear as if she’s about to kill me, but I still have some time before we get to that point… I think.

“Tell me something,” she asks, wiggling her fingers and making the vines spread up to her shoulders, her power amplifying. “Have you by chance lost something over the last few hours?”

My muscles tighten. Shit. Does she know about Gemma? Does she have something to do with what’s happened to her?

“What did you do?” I step forward, reducing the space between us as anger begins to burn under my skin. At the moment, I don’t care if she canreach forward and kill me. I’m too f**king pissed at the idea that she’d be vindictive enough to do something to Gemma, though I’m really not at all surprised.

“Hey, I didn’t do anything,” she says, trying to be offended. “He came to me, okay?”

“He?” I’m confused. “Who the hell are you talking about?”

She gapes at me. “Um, the super tall, sexy vampire that I’m pretty sure belongs to you… or, well, belongs to Aislin.” She pauses, a malicious look rising on her face. “Or maybe it’s that star girl you’ve always secretly been in love with. Gamma or whatever. He did talk about her a lot.” She scrunches her nose at the thought. “It would be pretty funny. The girl that you could never let go, falling in love with your best friend. Or ex-best friend anyway.”

I’m not even sure what comes over me. I’m usually good with insults—especially Stasha’s—yet something about Gemma and Laylen and her accusations makes me lose control of my anger. Something snaps inside me, and before I can shut it down, I’m charging toward her outstretched hands of death.

“I’d watch it if I were you,” she warns, waggling her fingers, the movement just enough to cause me to freeze just inches away from them.

Composing myself, I back away from her, telling myself to settle down because I’m not going to get anywhere with any of this if I’m dead. “Either you can put the gloves back on or leave,” I tell her calmly.

She rolls her eyes, but starts to put her gloves back on. “What’s gotten into you?” She gets her fingers snuggly into one glove and then moves to the other hand. “You used to be so much stronger and had it together more than this while we were dating. “ Once she gets the gloves on, she lowers her arms to her sides. “But you’re acting so erratic.”

I hate to admit it, but she’s right; although I’m not going to tell her that. Just like I’ve never admitted anything to her during the four years I dated her.

Our relationship was built solely on one thing—sex. I got bored and went to her to fill up my time, and she was a cold enough person that she didn’t mind.

In fact, sometimes I think she’s as dead inside as me, but that might be because she actually has death in her.

“We haven’t dated in a couple of years,” I say blankly. “Things change.”

She eyes me over with disgust. “And not for the better. Jesus, look at you.” She crosses her arms, her face pinched. “All worked up over some girl.”

“How do you know about Gemma?” I wonder. “Is it just from Laylen or has word been traveling?”

Her mouth turns up to a grin as she struts up to me. “Wouldn’t you like to know?” She places a finger on my chest and traces a line all the way up to my chin. “You know, I could easily tell you if you gave me something in return.” She bites her lip as her finger slides under my chin.

I lean out of her touch. “Get out,” I say coldly. “I don’t have time for your shit, and trust me, whatever you want from me, you’re not going to get.”

She scowls. “Fuck you. You don’t have to be such a douche.”

“I thought you liked the douche,” I challenge, arching my brow.

Her face reddens with anger and I wait for her to unleash her wrath, maybe even pull off the gloves, but instead she simmers down and steps back. “Fine. Be that way.” She walks toward the back of the room and something occurs to me.

“Wait, how did you get back here?” I ask, inching into the room toward her.

She flips her hair off her shoulders as she squares them. “Oh, Alex, you really have gone downhill, haven’t you? Forgetting that anything’s possible.” Then with a smile, she picks up Aislin’s spell book. “Besides, I never even came here for you.” She raises the book. “Only this.”

“Shit.” I run toward her, but I hit an invisible force field in the center of the room that flings me back through the air. I land on my back, the impact so intense it knocks the wind out of me. After I recover, I jump to my feet, but by the time I get up, she’s gone, and I have no clue where she went or how she even got here in the first place.

This is bad. Very bad. At least from my point of view. The only way to find out for sure is for Aislin to get here and tell me what Stasha could possibly want with her spell book. I mean, she’s only a Keeper with the gift of death, which she inherited from her mother who had a slight bit of Plant Nymph blood inside her.

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