Home > Blue Blooded (Jessica McClain #6)(10)

Blue Blooded (Jessica McClain #6)(10)
Author: Amanda Carlson

“If only we could take you up on that,” I muttered.


The wheels bounced roughly, shaking us in our seats. We’d just touched down in Florence. It was eight a.m. We’d flown through the night. I’d gotten some spotty sleep, but not much. I glanced out the window and realized we hadn’t landed at a regular airport. “Where are we?” I asked. It looked like a field of some sort.

I hadn’t thought to ask what the flight plan was. I’d just assumed Eudoxia knew what she was doing.

One of the two vampire flight attendants answered, with some distaste, “We have landed at the Mediterranean Pack airport, a few miles outside of Florence.”

Before the flight attendant could add anything more, Eudoxia replied tersely, not bothering to look around, “There are only a few options when one is in need of a supernatural landing place. It was either here, or farther south with the nymphs, who have taken over an entire town. I figured this would be preferable.”

“You thought right,” I said. “My father said Julian would be here to greet us. I hadn’t questioned how we’d find him, but this makes it convenient.”

“That’s why he’s the Alpha, and you’re not,” Eudoxia huffed, meaning it as a burn, but I took it as a compliment. My father was Pack Alpha for a reason. It was a job I wasn’t even remotely interested in. Looking after my small group was more than enough. Tyler and Danny had sworn fealty to me, with a blood oath, and I’d given my blood to Naomi and Ray. I’d sworn a childhood oath with Nick that had involved a blood swap. I’d given my essence to Marcy to heal her. That, in turn, had bound these people to me. It was more than enough.

The flight attendants moved to the door, both of them covered head to toe in black. Only the oldest and most powerful vampires—and vampires who had ingested my blood—could walk in the sun. One of them opened the door, tossing the set of steps down, hissing. They both retreated quickly.

I had no idea what to expect once we got outside.

Tyler deplaned first, then Kayla, followed by Nick, then James and Marcy. Rourke took my hand, and we went together. Ray brought up the rear, and Eudoxia, who was busying herself with some task, would come when she was good and ready and not one second before.

“Is that the son of Callum McClain I see?” The accented voice erupted from the small group of wolves situated a few feet away from the plane. “The Northern Territory Alpha in training? Or, should I amend that to the U.S. Territory Alpha in training?” Julian referred to the fact that my father had fought, and killed, Redman Martin, the former Alpha of the Southern Territories, effectively joining the Packs together as one.

The comment was meant to let us know that the Mediterranean Pack was well aware of what had happened in our neck of the woods—or, more precisely, our neck of the swamp—since my father had defeated Redman in the Everglades while we’d been down there trying to deal with the Made wolves and a possessed bokor.

“Hello, Julian,” my brother answered graciously. “It’s good to see you again.” They clasped hands.

Julian de Rossi looked exactly the same as when I’d last seen him, around eight years ago. His jet-black hair was slicked back in his signature style. His expensive button-up shirt was popped open at the top, and a gold chain hung loosely amidst a thick nestle of dark chest hair. He affected a casual stance, looking every bit the debonair Italian he was, but I detected a slight change of expression as he took in the rest of the group as we proceeded down the steps.

Apparently, my father hadn’t informed him about the motley crew who would be accompanying me. Wolves were devoted pack animals, and they rarely interacted with other Sects. It was highly unusual for a wolf to travel with so many different supernaturals.

Julian recovered himself quickly, reaching his hand out to James. “It’s good to see you, James,” he said. “I’ve never seen Callum travel without his second, but times in our world are changing.”

“Indeed, they are,” James replied. James was indeed my father’s second-in-command, but since he’d found his pairing with my friend Marcy, and considering all of the dangers I’d faced over the last few months, it’d made sense for James to travel with us. It was risky for my father to be without his second, in case a challenge arose, but for now the wolves were occupied with the common threat to Pack, so it was safe enough. “I’d like to introduce you to my mate. This is Marcy Talbot.” James steered her toward Julian, grinning at her with a pride that made my heart swell.

They were a perfect match.

Marcy stuck her hand out. “Pleased to meetcha,” she said. “I’ve heard a lot about the Mediterranean Pack over the years. Nice to finally meet the wolf in charge.”

“Well, I hope for my sake what you’ve heard has been favorable,” Julian replied with a grin.

“Yes and no,” she deadpanned. She paused just long enough to make it awkward and then expertly followed with, “I’m just joking. Honestly, I know next to nothing about you or your wolves, but I’m sure things run like a top around here. What I’m really hoping is that you’re in contact with other supernaturals in the area. My aunt is missing, and my first priority is to find her, hopefully with your help.”

Julian recovered nicely, smiling to reveal a set of perfectly straight teeth. “Of course.” He bowed. “I am at your service. Callum informed me that someone close to you was missing.” He glanced over Marcy’s shoulder at me. “Or more than a few, from what I gathered. I have many contacts. I’m happy to share them with you.”

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