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My chest squeezed. “But you had to.”

Ren didn’t respond, so I started to turn to him but the hand curling around my neck stopped me. He guided my head back, turning it just the slightest, and then he kissed me, scattering my thoughts. The hand between my thighs slid up and his arm folded around my waist. He lifted me up onto the very tips of my toes.

I gasped into his mouth when he entered me from behind, thrusting so deep I thought at first I couldn’t take it, but he proved that I could, again and again. We were a slippery, soapy mess as I threw my arms out, planting my hands on the wet tile in front of me as Ren kept one arm secured around my waist and then the other went between my thighs again. He worked me with his fingers and his cock, his breath hot on my neck, his words scorching my ears. When I came, I threw my head back against his shoulder, having a near out of body experience.

Two things surprised the hell out of me in that moment. One, I hadn’t ended up on my ass, and two, even after the whole shower sex thing, Ren was ready to go again when we were getting changed.

Sometimes I wondered if Ren was even human, but I guessed we were just making up for lost time.

And we had a lot of making up to do.

We were ready with minutes to spare, and I used them, stopping at the door before we left, blocking it with my body.

Ren arched a brow, our bags in both hands. “What are you doing?”

“I want to say something and I want to have your full attention.”

One side of his mouth kicked up. “You always have my full attention, Sweetness.”

“I know, but I really want it right now.” I took a deep breath. “What you did today to get Marlon to talk couldn’t have been easy. I know that. I had a hard time watching, but I did. I watched. That’s not the same as actually doing it.”

“No.” He exhaled roughly. “It’s not.”

“But you had to do it, Ren. We needed to know where the Prince went. You did what you had to do and you shouldn’t lose a moment of yourself to that.”

His chin dipped, and for a brief moment I wasn’t sure he would respond. “I won’t.”

I wasn’t sure I believed him. “You promise?”

Ren’s gaze found mine. “I promise.”

“I’ll keep you to that promise,” I swore. Springing forward, I stretched up and kissed the corner of his mouth. His arms swept around me and he held me tight to his chest. Several moments passed before I could force myself to pull away from him. “We better get going.”

“Yeah.” His voice roughened. “If we don’t, we may never leave this room, apocalypse baby or not.”

I blushed as I turned, opening the door, knowing he’d make good on that rather pleasant warning. We arrived in the lobby to discover a rather decent size group waiting for us by the doors I’d never seen opened before. They appeared to lead out to the front of the building.

Dane and Kalen stood beside Faye, the three of them carrying black duffel bags, so I assumed they were part of our entourage. I scanned the group, relieved to see that Merle wasn’t there but a little unnerved by the fae faces I didn’t recognize.

Tink was there though, standing a little bit apart from the group. There was a rather large suitcase beside him. Slung over his shoulder was a . . . Wonder Woman backpack. I parted from Ren, walking up to him. “Where did you get that?”

“I stole it from a little fae girl.” He paused. “Hashtag thug life.”

“What?” My mouth dropped open.

“I’m kidding,” he said, and I wasn’t sure if I believed him or not. “Ordered it from Amazon a few months ago. Goes good with my leotard.”

I eyed him as Ren joined me, holding two paper cups of coffee. He handed me one with a wink. “Thanks.” Then I faced Tink again. “Why do you have your bags down here?”

“Why?” Tink wrinkled his nose. “We have no idea how long we’re going to be gone and I’m not going to wear the same clothes.”

“You’re not going, Tink. You’re staying—”

“I’m not staying here. Hell no. You’re going to San Diego, and so am I. You need me.”

Frustration snapped at me. “Tink—”

“Don’t Tink me,” he shot back. “I get that you want to keep me safe and sound, but I can handle myself.”

I knew he could handle himself, but I still didn’t want him putting himself in danger. “What about Dixon? You can’t bring him.”

“I know that. Hunting down the Prince and possibly killing him is not the place for an adorable kitten,” he said. “Brighton is watching him for me.”

My brows lifted, and then I shook my head as I stepped closer to Tink. “I don’t want you in danger.”

Tink smiled. “Ivy-divy, I know that I’m fucking cute and adorable, but I think you forget what I’m capable of. You guys need me on this trip.”

Ren lightly touched my arm, drawing my attention. “As much as this pains me to admit, Tink is right. We could use him.”

“Don’t take this from me.” Tink lowered his voice. “You all are out there risking your lives. I’ve already spent enough time watching you leave and do that. It’s time I step up.”

I wanted to argue more, but Tink and Ren were right. We could use him. I couldn’t take that from him. I sighed. “Okay.”

“Good.” Tink looked over at Ren. “Wait. Have you two stopped fighting? Oh my Queen Mab, you guys are in love again!”

My eyes widened as I glanced around, seeing that several of the strangers were watching us with detached interest. “Tink . . .”

“We were never not together,” Ren said, dropping his arm over my shoulders.

The blue and red bag slipped to the floor as he clapped his hands like an overexcited seal. “You guys are! This is amazing.”

“Tink,” I said again, this time with a little more force behind his name.

“Thank the faery lords and ladies, I will not be a product of a split home.”

“For the last time, we are not your parents, Tink.” I shook my head as I started to turn but stopped. “Pick up your bag.”

Ren leaned in as Tink snatched the bag off the floor. “You sound like his mom.”

“Shut up,” I hissed.

“There you two are.” Tanner stepped out of the huddle. He didn’t look at me like I wasn’t supposed to be there. “Let me introduce you to Fabian’s consuls.”

The strangers stepped forward, and after a blur of very fae-like sounding names except for the last dude who was introduced as Fred, I realized I would not remember a single name from this point on.

Each one smiled and nodded kindly, leagues more polite than their prince.

“We have three vehicles waiting for you outside,” Tanner said, and Faye stepped forward, carrying several packages.

“Each of us will have a phone equipped with GPS that will be tracked from here in case something happens and we must separate,” Faye explained, handing me the envelope.

Setting my coffee on the nearby table, I felt around the envelope, touching four separate phones. I figured Tink would be traveling with Ren and I. “Why are there four?”

“Because I will be joining you.”

My jaw clenched as I turned around. Fabian had arrived, looking as dashing as a doorknob. “Yeah, you’re going to need to find a different car to ride in.”

“Ivy,” Tink whined in a low voice. “He will be riding me.”

Ren choked on his coffee and turned, wheezing softly.

I turned to Tink. “You want to maybe rethink what you just said?”

“Oh, no. I said that right.”

“If he’s going to be in the car with us, he will not be riding you while we’re in there, okay?” I couldn’t believe I actually had to speak those words. “I think I’m going to find who Faye is riding with—”

“Oh no.” Ren caught the back of my shirt. “You are not leaving me with them.”

Fabian moseyed on up to Tink, eyeing the suitcase. “What is in the suitcase? Seems rather . . . bulky for clothing.”