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I move through the walls until I reach the third staircase that takes me to the west wing.

Humming softly, I walk down the beautiful halls that go unappreciated. I’d planned on making my bedroom one of the ones on this side, just to show this side some love.

There’s one with a beautiful view of a rose garden so lavish that it’s fit for a king. It was going to be my room if I ever turned whole. They could visit me and sleep there when they wanted.

Back in fantasy land.

In hindsight, it was rather silly to think I’d just be part of the group and fill all their needs.

It’s the first time I’ve been able to stay in this room past ten minutes without revisiting them to put my eyes on them. I soak it in, giving into the illusion once more of having the four of them in here.

All of us a tangle of naked limbs and whispered words…

Still sated with just their presence nearby, I spend the rest of the evening in my fantasy room, kept company by the dust and occasional creepy spider.

By the time it grows late and I assume they’re all in bed, I make my way through the quiet house.

Unable to help myself, I poke my head in Kai’s door, and mutter, “Good night.”

Just as I almost get my head pulled back through, I hear, “Good night.”

I’m not sure why my heart acts like it’s way more excited than it should be. I withdraw completely, trying not to read too much into it.

Moving to Gage’s room, I stick my head through the door, and say, “Good night.”

“Good night,” finds me before I get my head out of his door, and a small smile curves my lips.

They’re a little late, but at least I don’t feel as miserable about being tethered to them at the moment.

Poking my head in Jude’s door, I whisper, “Good night.”

I wait for a moment, unable to see even an outline of him in the jet-black room, and then blow out a breath. I guess two out of three is better than I realistically expected.

When I turn around, I squeal a little, because Jude is leaned against the wall in the hallway, his hands in his jean pockets as he studies me.

His black T-shirt smells like it just came out of the dryer, and his hair is still damp like he’s just left the shower.

“The spell has been replaced. It should last a while before someone manages to drain it,” he tells me.

“Guess you couldn’t get rid of me like you hoped, huh?” I ask through a dark smile.

“Didn’t try. It’s to keep out harmful intent. Not actual beings. It’s a much more costly upgrade,” he tells me with a shrug.

I say nothing, just stand here awkwardly for a moment.

“You can stay away from us longer now, can’t you?” he asks.

“Seems to be a major perk from my last level-up. All I need is the comfort of your presence to stay anchored now. Major bonus for you guys with your privacy.” I walk by him, and he laughs under his breath.

“Is it necessary to prance around in outfits you know we like to see on women, when you know we can’t touch you?” he calls to my back.

I walk a little higher in my tall boots and go-go dancer skirt that shows hints of my ass with each step.

“I’ve learned I’m an unapologetic tease when men are assholes,” I retort, moving toward Ezekiel’s room.

My outfit changes into a thin, pretty nightgown that stops at my knees.

Before I can poke my head through Ezekiel’s door, Jude is suddenly behind me, his tingles riding all down the length of my back as his lips make my ear tingle.

“Good night,” he whispers, then he’s gone, and I breathe out shakily while fighting a smile.

Instead of poking my head into Ezekiel’s door, I pass through it. Maybe I shouldn’t care that he’s violently thrashing in the bed like he’s in physical pain. But I do.

I move to the bed, planning to lie beside him as I have hundreds of times. As soon as I’m on the bed, my hand goes to his side, resting there.

Those tingles are more pronounced than usual, and he goes instantly still, his body relaxing as he seems to drift off into a more peaceful sleep. My lips curl in a grin.

I never see him sleep peacefully. Even under the influence of that drug, his face was scrunched in agony. Peering over him, I see a calm, serene look on his face as his breathing evens out.

I start to pull away, and his face hardens. Curious, I place my hand on him once more, and he falls back into a peaceful sleep.

Since there’s a new spell in place for protection, I’m a little less on alert, but I’m still wary. Each sound captures my attention until I can isolate what exactly it is.

“Good night,” I whisper to Ezekiel.

I shut my eyes, pretending I can sleep as well. I wonder what rest would feel like.

Those tingles continue to spread when he rolls over, his arm crossing through me.

The longer I feel those sweet sensations, the more relaxed I become. So relaxed, that when I close my eyes again, they almost feel heavy.

Chapter 11

The sound of a groan startles me awake. Awake? I don’t sleep, so why am I jerking awake to sunlight when it was clearly dark just a second ago.

My head aches a little as something tickles my cheek. I dust it off, feeling the swipe of my fingers, and jerking my hand back to stare at it in horror.

Eyes widening, I study the very whole hand in front of me, then take in the very new sensations surrounding me.

Warmth. Softness. Hardness. A slight chill in the air. The whisper of wind rushing over my skin. But I concentrate primarily on the warmth, because a large, heavy hand is spanned across my stomach, the heat of it carrying through the thin gown that is actually real now.

Soft. Silky. Smooth.

I moan before I can stop myself because of all the sensations washing over me at once.

I can fucking feel…

And I had no idea what I was missing.

My legs glide over the sheets, feeling the exquisite softness beneath me. It’s absolutely amazing. Almost overwhelming.

The hand on my stomach tenses, slowly squeezing just enough to wrinkle my gown. Then Ezekiel’s head pops up, his eyes widen on me, and those gold flakes almost dance with excitement.

That warmth floods me, and something akin to a dull ache moves between my thighs as I try to get my rapid breathing under control. I only thought I knew what arousal was until this moment.

It’s a consuming, burning desire that swarms you, making you desperate for touch like I never imagined possible. And if he doesn’t touch me everywhere—every inch of my skin—soon, I’m afraid I might actually cry.

His eyes do a quick sweep of my body, and a dark, daring grin tugs at one corner of his mouth before his eyes come back up.

His hand darts out, and I scream, just knowing he’s about to kill me on my first day being whole. Instead, he grabs the front of my gown and rips it down to my waist, baring my breasts to him.

Sensation washes over me, stealing my scream as my nipples harden almost painfully, and that ache intensifies as my body continues to heat.

I suck in a breath as he suddenly comes down on top of me, and shoves the rest of the gown up. Without warning, his lips come down on mine, hard and demanding as my eyes cross and I arch against him, needing contact. It feels like a jolt of electricity shoots through me when his daring tongue slips in and starts doing incredible things, electrifying every dormant nerve so that it wakes up and soaks in every feeling for the first time.

I’m moaning like an idiot just from him kissing me, grinding against nothing as I try to get as close as possible, touching everything at once. My hands glide over his strong, smooth back, and he reaches between us, his hand brushing my pussy as he rips down the front of his boxers.

The door flies open, and I jump, panicking a little as it crashes into the wall. A squeal pops out of me like a surprise hiccup, and I drop through the bed, the floor, and almost drop through the next floor before I remember how to stop.

I lie on the ground, panting heavily, Ezekiel’s touch still ghosting over me as a teasing reminder of what it’s like to actually feel. The thunderous sound of rushing footsteps come barreling down the stairs. I’m still dazed and confused, staring at my mostly transparent hand as my entire body throbs with need I can’t sate in this form.

I never had any idea just a kiss could be so drugging.

“Fucking get off me,” I hear Ezekiel bark.

“What the hell was going on? How did she turn whole?” Jude is snapping.

They all swing their gazes to me the second they finally reach the room where I am.

“What the hell is going on?” Kai asks, his eyes narrowing on me.

“I…I don’t sleep. Somehow I fell asleep next to Ezekiel, because he quit thrashing around when I touched him,” I babble.

Ezekiel shoves through Kai and Gage, moving toward me with eyes so gold it looks like his natural color.

He makes a grab for me, but his hand passes right through me, igniting those tingles that only serve to tease me more now.

The gown is still ripped down the front, and Jude is staring very obviously at where it’s still hanging above my hips as well.

“Just what the hell were you going to do with her, E? You know you can’t fuck her without us. All that bonding stuff or whatever,” Kai drawls.

“I could have fucked her,” he growls, looking over at them.

Confusion crosses their faces.

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