“I can’t live without you,” he growled. “I won’t let you make me do so.”

She arched into his pounding hips, her sleek body even more powerful than before. Strong enough to take everything he had to give her and still demand more. “I love you.”

Rearing back, Adrian yanked her up. He rested on his heels and urged her to rock against him. “Fuck me, Linds. Make me come.”

She wrapped her silken arms around his neck and tucked her knees on either side of his. Thrusting her hips, she rode him, taking him swift and hard with fluidly graceful undulations.

She was formidable now and she devastated him with pleasure. The rhythmic slap of her pelvis against his was so erotic, he bit his lower lip to hold off the onslaught of orgasm. Not yet . . . Too soon . . . Make it last . . .

“Don’t hold back,” she moaned. “I’m waiting for you.”

He caught her nape in his hand, pulling her mouth to his. Their lips sealed, their panting breaths mingling as they climaxed together. Quaking with the power of it. Shaken by the pure, unadulterated connection between them. No restraints.

At last.

“Elijah, too?” Lindsay asked, her fingers stroking across Adrian’s chest. “He went with them?”

“His body wasn’t among the dead, so I assume so, yes.”

That hurt her. Elijah’s actions could very well pit him against the man she loved. She thought of the message the lycan had left on her phone, the date of his call falling after the uprising. He wanted to see her, asked for her help. And because he was her friend, she wanted to give it to him. She was divided on all sides, beholden to damn near everyone for saving her ass at some point or other. “What will we do?”

Turning his head, Adrian pressed his lips to her forehead. “We recuperate and regroup. Then we assess the damage and start rebuilding.”

“But there are so few of you now.”

“We can do it.” He sounded so sure.

“How well do you trust your Sentinels?”

“With my life.”

She blew out her breath. “The person who snatched me from the Point and took me to Syre . . .”


“. . . sported wings.”

Adrian jerked with surprise.

“I’m sorry.” She attempted to soothe him with soft strokes of her hand over his chest. “I didn’t get a look at who it was. I was knocked out from behind with some kind of Vulcan neck squeeze.”

He was quiet for a long time, but the turmoil he felt was reflected in the howling winds that surrounded the house.

“You hide your emotions so well,” she said quietly. “But the weather gives you away.”

He looked down at her with widened eyes. “How do you know that?”

“I feel the weather in you. I’m kinda attuned to that sort of thing. I feel emotions through the wind. It’s like it talks to me. It used to warn me about inhumans, too, but I sense the differences on my own now. I guess my weather radar was truly mine and not an echo of Shadoe’s abilities.”

His mouth curved in one of his rare full smiles.

“What?” Lindsay was dazzled by that smile, and curious about its cause.

“I’ve prayed for a sign—any sign at all—that the Creator would absolve me of guilt for falling in love. When the weather began to respond to my moods, I thought it was to remind me of my shortcomings. But perhaps it was the sign I asked for, a gift to bring you to me.”

“That’s beautiful.”

“And hopeful, which I need right now. We all do.”

She hugged him. “When I was younger, I used to think my sixth sense made me a freak.”

“No. It makes you mine.”

They lay in silence for a while. Lindsay almost dozed, lulled by the steady cadence of Adrian’s heartbeat and the feel of his warm, solid body pressed against hers.

“Do you miss her?” she asked after a while.

His chest expanded on a deep breath. He didn’t pretend to misunderstand. “I should—I owe her that much—but it’s been so long, and I need you so much. It’s hard to see past you. Although, to be honest, I’m not trying very hard. I love the view.”

“It’s okay if you do think of her. I told her I wouldn’t hold it against you if you did.”

“You spoke to her?”

Lindsay set her hands atop the tight lacing of muscle that crisscrossed his abdomen, then set her chin upon them. “She was going to keep you. She was a pro at dealing with all those past lives and memories, while I was drowning in them. I had to fight for you.”

His blue eyes flamed with the heat of his emotions. “You did?”

“I know, right? After all the times I tried to push you away, I finally realized I couldn’t live—or die—without you. So I told her if she kept you, I’d still always have some part of you and she’d have to share. Apparently, she decided she’d rather have you be with me and think about her, than be with her while thinking about me.”

Adrian’s smile curled her toes. “That sounds like her.”

“I’m grateful,” she admitted. “She gave up her soul so I could keep mine.”

“I will love her for that forever. But you have my heart and soul, Lindsay.”

“I know.”

After a drawn out moment, he exhaled audibly. “Maybe this . . . experience was good for her, too. Shadoe wasn’t a bad person, but she wasn’t one to sacrifice her desires for the good of others.”

“You’re thinking she matured over countless lifetimes?”

“I’d like to think so. For her sake.”

Lindsay looked down at her fingers as she traced the faint line of dark hair that bisected his abs and led to delicious places below. After everything he had been through and everything he’d lost, Adrian still had it in him to search for silver linings. She loved him for that, and countless other things. “I told her I’d take whatever I can get when it comes to you.”

He twisted deftly, caging her beneath him. Framed by his unfurling wings, he was darkly handsome. Breathtaking. “Then you’d best be prepared to take all of me.”

“Yes, neshama.” She slid her arms around his neck. “All of you. Always.”


“As I feared,” Damien said, “we’ve lost the Andover and Forest River packs. We’re keeping a lid on the others for now, but if we’re attacked from the outside while battling mutiny on the inside, more will fall.”

Adrian stood at the railing of the wraparound deck and watched his Sentinels exercise their wings in the air above him. The early-morning sky of pink and gray was giving way to a soft powder blue. “We’ll just have to find a way to be more resourceful. In the interim, the illness is spreading through the vampire ranks like wildfire. Perhaps all we really have to do is sit and wait. I won’t count on it, but it’s a possibility.”

“You’re better today,” Damien noted.

“Stronger,” he agreed. “Happier. Ready to take on the world.”

“That’s the sex talking.”

Adrian turned at the sound of Lindsay’s voice, finding her standing a few feet away. She reached over her head and pushed up to her tiptoes, stretching her lovely lithe body—much to his delight.

She straightened and wrinkled her nose at Damien. “I’m sorry. I really don’t mean to flaunt the rules and be disrespectful. It’s just that’s such a guy thing to say the morning after he doesn’t let his girlfriend get any sleep.”

Morning after . . .

Adrian looked up at the sun in the sky, then shot a look at Damien, whose mouth hung slightly ajar. Lindsay seemed oblivious to the fact that she was standing in sunlight.

“I’d like to get back into training,” she went on. “I’m going to need it so I can cover your ass and find the vamps who killed my mother. I’m not giving up on hunting those fuckers down and making them pay. And I need to know for sure what happened with my dad. If there’s a score to settle there, I have to know. If it was truly just an accident, I need to know that, too.”

“Whatever you require, neshama,” Adrian assured her, concealing his astonishment.

Damien leaned closer and spoke under his breath. “She should be on fire in this level of sunlight. How is it possible that she’s not?”

Adrian sat on the railing and watched Lindsay go through an elaborate and unwittingly sexy calisthenics routine. “I don’t know, but I suspect my blood has something to do with it. Much like Fallen blood conveys a temporary immunity.”

“Other vamps have bitten Sentinels before. They weren’t then able to practice yoga on an uncovered deck.”

“But only Lindsay has drunk Sentinel blood exclusively after being turned by one of the Fallen. Every cell in her body is nourished by blood that protects her. As long as she continues to drink from me, she might keep the benefits.”

“A minion with the gifts of the Fallen.” Damien lifted a hand to his brow, as if pained. “If Sentinel blood cures the vampire disease and imparts immunity to the healthy, and others were to learn of this—”

“—we’d be hunted to extinction. I know.”

“Without the lycans, we’re sitting ducks.”

“Siobhán is testing whether lycan blood is an alternative. They were once seraphim, too.”

Damien was silent for a moment. “I’ll pray for a miracle.”

“Pray for us all.” Adrian set his hands on the railing and tipped his face up to the sun. The morning breeze blew across his feathers in a soft greeting from the new day. “We’re going to need it.”