Home > The Dark Ones (The Dark Ones Saga #1)(15)

The Dark Ones (The Dark Ones Saga #1)(15)
Author: Rachel Van Dyken

"So…" I pulled myself away from him; I was starting to get too hot again. "You've saved me… to what end?"

Ethan's eyes turned very serious as he whispered, "Hopefully, one day… you'll be able to return the favor. And save us."



HER EYEBROWS DREW TOGETHER IN WHAT I could only assume was frustration. Her heart started to race, and then her eyes dilated as she glanced at my mouth again. If she did that one more time, I was going to lose my mind. I was already trying desperately to keep her from touching me too much. Because it affected me, as much as I wanted to deny it, to deny her.

Her physical contact was everything I'd been craving.

Giving in would be easy.

Staying away would be hard.

But traveling down that road again — knowing how it was likely to end — well, I wasn't so sure I would survive it. I was immortal, but my heart was still fragile.

And when it broke…

As an immortal, I suffered with unimaginable pain. Pain I never wanted to experience again, thus the reason for keeping myself firmly tucked away from the weak little human with the pretty smile.

I liked her hair.

It was gold, not really brown, not blond — just gold. The firelight made certain pieces glow. It was tempting to grab it, to sniff it, to wrap it around my fingers and imagine what she'd be like in the throes of passion.

"Ethan…" My name on her lips was ecstasy. I shook the thought away and tried to appear indifferent.


"I can't save anyone… I can't even save myself."

"You're stronger than you think," I encouraged. "Trust me."

"That's just it." She tugged her lower lip into her mouth and chewed, her dark blue eyes sad. "You've given me no reason to."

"You're alive," I pointed out. "That's reason enough."

"He's not the best at comforting humans," came Alex's voice from the door. I could hear the amusement in his tone.

I rolled my eyes and turned, ready to bark at him to leave.

"Cassius called," Alex said in a bored tone. "Wanted to know if I know where the human is."


"I lied." Alex rolled his eyes. "Of course."

"And he didn't believe you?"

"Naturally." Alex examined his fingernails and shrugged. "So I told him you'd trapped her in your lair and were having your way with her."

Genesis let out a little whimper and ran her hands down my chest again.

I clenched my teeth and hissed out a breath. "Could we not discuss this now?"

Alex held up his hands. "Just thought you should know… he isn't pleased that you've bonded with her. I lied and said it was complete."

"He'll still try to take her, regardless." I licked my lips and tried to focus on Alex rather than the fact that Genesis was drawing circles on my chest, making me want to lean into her, capture her lips and suck.

"Yup." Alex grinned as he watched the scene in front of him like it was some hilarious movie and not my life. "So, this looks cozy."

"Was there anything else?" I barked.

"Complete the mating." He nodded. "At least then her eyes will be opened fully… and we can see if this was all worth it."

Genesis let out a moan. Heat shot through my body, slicing me nearly in half. She was transitioning into the final phase.

Alex had the good sense to look like he felt sorry for her before nodding his head again and shutting the door.

"Please!" Genesis begged, gripping my shirt with both of her hands. Her eyes rolled to the back of her head. "Make it stop, please! It's so hot."

It was about to get worse.

The final stage always was.

Like taking knives from a fire and slicing up your body. I'd always been told that during this stage, humans dreamt of Death.

And because of that fact, Death visited them, beckoned them, and many, took his outstretched hand and never woke up.

"Listen…" I cupped her face with my hands. "…focus on me… not the pain. It's almost over."

"And you'll be here?" Her body started to convulse as my blood merged with hers. The same blood I'd shared with her when I'd marked her. "P-promise?"


Her eyes flashed green, mimicking mine.

"I won't leave your side."

"My mouth…" She shook her head violently, her lips swollen from the heat. "…hurts."

I pressed my mouth to hers gently and then pierced the skin of her upper lip, relieving the pressure of the blood in her system — my blood fighting hers as it should, her blood refusing to give up as it should.

Humans always tasted the same — like life — like earth mixed with sugar. It was addicting. I'd always thought it was too sweet.

But she tasted perfect.

"More…" She tugged at my shirt again.

I kissed her again, this time slanting my mouth over where my fangs had dug into her tender skin.

I was old.

Able to control myself.

At least that was what I said when I kissed her a third time, this time more passionately. And when she clung to me like I was her only chance at survival, I wanted to roar with excitement. It was the bond.

Nothing more.

I kissed her harder.

Her nails dug into my skin.

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