But then it was too late for even Caleb to leap back over. The hatch slammed shut and the submarine lowered itself into the depths of the dark ocean.

Chapter 14: Sofia

I stared at Eli’s TV, barely believing what I was seeing.

Passport photos of my twins flashed before the screen.

“Those are the suspects.” Eli pointed to the screen as CCTV footage showed two tall men dressed in long black cloaks, wearing gloves and black hats, entering the apartment foyer.

Derek stood up and swore as the two men entered the elevator after Rose and presumably her friend Kristal. “But how did any of this happen? How the hell did they get to Hawaii?”

“Oh, God,” I said. “You know how much they were complaining about going to Scotland. They must have figured out a way to get to Hawaii instead.”

Derek slammed his fists down against the table. “And who are they?” He looked like he wanted to climb into the TV and rip the two men to shreds there and then. It was impossible to tell who they were. For all we knew, they could have been regular humans looking to prey on two innocent girls.

“There’s footage of the two of them entering,” Eli said, his hands shaking as he held the remote, “followed by two more a few minutes later—see?—but there’s no footage of them ever exiting. That’s what’s got the police so confused. They have no idea how they could have gotten all four of those teens out of there without being caught on camera. The last footage they have is the four men entering the apartment. After that, nothing.”

“We need to get out of here,” I said, standing up. “We have to find them.”

Derek and I stormed out of Eli’s penthouse and raced through the woods to the Sanctuary. Derek ripped the heavy wooden door from its hinges with his bare hands as we raced through the corridors to their bedroom.

“Ibrahim! Corrine!” we shouted as we burst in.

The married couple sat up in bed, looking at both of us groggily and rubbing their eyes.

“Sofia?” Corrine mumbled. “Derek? What is this?”

“The twins,” I shrieked. “They’ve been kidnapped.”

That woke her up faster than a bucket of ice water.

“We need you to take us to Honolulu, Hawaii this instant.”

She and Ibrahim stumbled out of bed, wrapping robes around their bare forms. Corrine gripped my shoulders, shaking me. “What? What are you saying? Hawaii?”

“There’s no time for explanation now.”

Corrine swore, clasping a hand to her mouth. “This is all my fault.”

“What?” Derek gripped Corrine’s shoulders. “What are you saying?”

“For the twins’ birthday, Rose asked me to change the dates on her and Ben’s passports. She promised that it was just to allow them to—”

“Derek, there’s no time for talk,” I urged. “Take us there. Now! Hurry!”

Ibrahim and Corrine held onto us and a few seconds later, we had vanished from The Shade in a whirl of colors.

Chapter 15: Rose

I screamed as the shadow of the submarine disappeared completely beneath the water.

Caleb tightened his grip around my waist and pulled me up toward the hatch, but I continued to struggle.

“Let me go!” I cried.

He gripped both of my wrists with one hand and lowered me into the hatch with the other. Hands beneath me grabbed my legs and pulled me down. When my feet touched the ground and Caleb slammed the hatch shut, my knees gave way and I crumpled to the floor, sobbing.

“Ben! Ben! No!”

I shut my eyes tight, and prayed that when I opened them, I’d wake up back in Kristal’s condo. This would all be a dreadful nightmare. I’d get up and rush into Ben’s bedroom to find him snoring and splayed out on the mattress in his blue pajamas.

“Ben, Ben, Ben,” I breathed, as if saying his name would bring him back to me.

Caleb crouched down beside me. I looked up into his brown eyes, my own eyes blurred with tears.

“I’ll get your brother back,” he said, his voice deep, his face ashen, dark hair soaking wet from the rain.

He stood up and began walking away.

“Wait,” I stammered, scrambling to my feet and following after him. “How? How will you get Ben back?”

Caleb didn’t look back at me as he continued walking along the narrow corridor of the submarine, injured vampires zigging and zagging in and out of rooms and crossing over our path as we walked.

He didn’t answer me until he reached a door at the bow of the vessel, pushed it open and took a seat in the control room, behind hundreds of buttons and dials, next to a vampire whom I assumed was the captain of the submarine.

Once seated, Caleb swiveled in his seat and faced me again.

“I’m going to speak to his superior. He had no authorization to do what he has done.”

I sat down in one of the spare seats behind them as the vampire on the right moved the vessel forward.

“But where are we going? Why don’t we chase after their submarine and get Ben back right this instant? Just like you rescued me.”

Caleb shook his head and set his eyes forward through the window screen.

“It’s too late for that now.”

“But what if they do something to him in the meantime?”

“They won’t harm him.”

“How do you know?”

“I know.”

Racing forward in the opposite direction from my kidnapped brother was the most painful experience I remembered having. “Where are we going now?” I breathed, tears spilling from my eyes again.


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