Rising Darkness (Rylee Adamson #9) - Page 46

I lifted my hand to him, the dream fading. “Never. Friends to the end.”

His smiled slipped. “To the end.”

I woke slowly. Those hadn’t been the best words to say, not with everything going on. But they were true.

Alex rolled toward me, his tongue hanging out, dirt sticking to it. I grimaced and sat up, pushing Eve’s wing off us. The light had faded, but the sun was still above the horizon. I looked around for Griffin. He was nowhere to be seen.

“He went to side track the supernaturals coming,” Eve said quietly, dropping her head to mine. “He said to say he would see you at the last battle to fight with you against Orion if he didn’t make it back in time to say goodbye.”

I stood. “Guess that means he’s told us everything.”

Eve stood and shook her whole body. “It wasn’t a direct answer, though, was it? A riddle. I really don’t like riddles, Rylee.”

I nodded and checked my weapons. Everything was there, both swords, extra knives, whip, crossbow, and bolts. Crazy to think that sleeping with all my weapons on was so damn easy now.

“I believe that he’s helped as much as he could. Whatever power these elemental creatures have, it’s more than I’ve ever dealt with.” I thought about the air elemental Erik and I had called on to deliver our throw down to the demons, right before Liam died. My memory of that was fuzzy, and the more I thought about it, the more into focus it came. Elementals. The myth of the supernatural world. I shook my head.

“Marco, can you go up and get a look at how far away the horde is? If you can help Griffin without getting injured, do it.” Marco lifted without question, and I watched as Eve’s eyes followed him.

“You love him?’

“Yes.”

I smiled. “Good.”

She fluttered her wings and tipped her head to one side.

“He’s going to help me re-unite the unicorns with the Harpies . . . .”

I didn’t respond to her unspoken words. It would depend on how many of each species were left after this cluster-fuck of plague and demons.

Alex stretched beside me, yawning and kicking each of his legs out, one at a time. “Time to go yet?”

“Soon.”

I crouched by the cave entrance. “You two awake?”

“Rylee, we don’t really sleep. This has been terrible,” Berget said.

“Shit, I’m sorry we couldn’t find you something better.”

Faris snorted. “That wasn’t what you said when I complained.”

“Faris, you’re old enough to be grateful for every day on this side of the veil,” Eve snapped, her beak darting into the opening.

He hollered something I couldn’t make out. “Ease off, Eve.”

She ruffled her feathers. “Stupid vampire.”

I leaned down. “We have incoming hostiles. Supernaturals, and according to Doran, four big, bad, ugly vampires that really want to make my acquaintance.”

“Did he say who?” Faris asked.

“Nope, no names. Just four really old ones. Does it matter who they are?”

“Might. If I know them, I might be able to get us all out in one piece.”

A loud thump behind us spun me around. Marco had returned. And Griffin was on his back. That was not a good sign.

Griffin slid off. “You got about ten minutes before the shambling horde hits here.”

“And sunset?”

“Fifteen minutes.”

Of course. Fucking hell.

The minutes ticking down to sunset pulled at him as if his muscles were being plucked like harp strings. His muscles. Not Faris’s. Damn, the longer he stayed, the more integrated he was into the vampire.

What happens when we

don’t remember ourselves? That was quickly becoming his biggest fear. Because despite the supposed truth that he could leave Faris whenever he wanted, he didn’t know how. Faris snorted.

“Won’t happen. I’ll kick you out before then.”

“Faris,” Berget said, “stop talking to yourself, you weirdo.”

“I’m talking to Liam. He’s a chatty boy today.”

Berget went quiet and pulled as far from him as she could, which wasn’t all that far.

What if you can’t?

“Suddenly you’re tired of my company? What’s the matter, wolf, scared?” The sneer in his voice was audible and Liam “leapt” forward as the sounds of fighting erupted above them. He shoved Faris’s being deep into the recesses of the body they shared.

“Berget, how soon can we get out of here?”

“Liam?”

He nodded, knowing that even in the dark she could see him.

“Three minutes. You should be able to feel the sun fading. Like the pull of something on your skin.”

She was right, as soon as she pointed it out he sensed the sun being gobbled up by the night, piece by piece until with a final gulp it was gone. He burst out of the shallow cave and slammed right into a vampire he didn’t know. No hesitation, he used the element of surprise to his advantage, tearing the vampire’s head off in a single motion.

The scene was utter and complete chaos. The supernaturals attacking Rylee were doing so on their last legs. They were cut down as fast as they came at her and Griffin.

There were three other vampires and they spotted him. One actually had the nerve to wave. “Hey, Faris. Nice to see you here, too.” His accent was Spanish and his dark features testified to his heritage.