“This is just getting sad,” Chris mumbled, shaking his head in disgust before he leaned down slightly so that he could kiss the tip of her nose.

“Then put me down if you don’t believe me,” Izzy said in a huff, no doubt planning on storming off to get her next sugar fix.

“Nope, sorry can’t do that. I like carrying my munchkin around,” Chris said with a shrug, instead of pointing out that the conference room was a good five minutes away and that Izzy wouldn’t be able to make it there without hurting herself.

As long as no one pointed out the reason behind their obsession with carrying her, Izzy was fine with being carried around. They all came up with some bullshit story to do it and as long as the story was somewhat believable, Izzy accepted their piss poor excuses. It was the only way to save her pride and allow her to pretend that they weren’t all worried about her or that the sounds of her weeping quietly in a corner somewhere didn’t break their hearts.

“I don’t want you carrying me if you don’t believe me, Chris,” Izzy said, crossing her arms tightly over her large chest as she pointedly glared off. “You may hand me over to my Daddy.”


“You heard me,” Izzy said stubbornly.


“I said good day, sir!”

With an annoyed sigh, Chris turned and handed her over to him. He gladly took her. He loved her a great deal, adored her really. It didn’t matter to him that she was his daughter-in-law, he thought of her as his baby girl, which was probably why she’d requested to be handed over to him, he realized with an inward groan.

“He’s not going to give you any junk food,” Chris pointed out as he walked past them to catch up with the shifter.

Izzy didn’t say anything as she looked up at him with adoring eyes and a sweet smile that had him resigning himself to a junk food run after the meeting.

Chapter 6

“Tell me again why we’re here?” Danni asked as she sat down next to Caine at the large conference table.

“Because the Council called a meeting,” he said, taking her hand into his so that he could press a kiss against her knuckles, noting that she was still wearing the gauze bandage around her wrist.

He considered asking her about it, but decided against it since she would only lie to him. She’d been wearing the bandage for over a week, a week more than she should need it. Although the cancer in her body caused problems and slowed the rate of healing, it didn’t slow it down that much. Whatever injury she had should have healed within a day, especially since he made damn sure that she fed every day, twice a day.

She rolled her eyes as she pulled her hand back, taking his with it so that she could place it on her lap where he knew that she’d spend the next half hour, or however the hell long this meeting was going to last, absently tracing his hand with her fingertips. It was a nervous habit that she’d recently developed when she wasn’t feeling well and didn’t want to tell him, but he knew.

He always knew when she wasn’t feeling well, but he didn’t say anything, not unless the stubborn woman tried to push herself too hard. Then he’d step in and do whatever it took to keep her in bed until he could get his hands on some more demon blood. Not that the demon blood was helping much these days and the knowledge f**king terrified him.

When he’d changed Danni into a Pyte he’d truly f**ked up. He hadn’t known that she was dying of cancer. She should have been given more blood during her transformation, but he hadn’t had enough to give her. They’d been held captive by a Master at the time and as a result his blood had not only given Danni immortality, but the cancer as well. Now his mate was going to live for eternity dying from cancer.

“Since when are we invited to Council meetings?” Danni asked, voicing the question that had been bugging the shit out of him since the damn shifter had started banging on their bedroom door, demanding that they move their asses.

At first he’d ignored the bastard and focused on Danni who had been moaning his name as he took her from behind, but when the banging wouldn’t stop and the bastard told them that their presence was requested, he’d been admittedly too curious to refuse.

Not once in all the years that he’d worked with the Sentinels had he ever been invited to a Level One meeting. That was usually reserved for Leaders, Council members, Sentinels and human squad leaders and not for Pytes like him who’d f**ked up over the years and were on probation. Since he normally used his enhanced hearing to eavesdrop on the meeting, he’d never really cared enough to bitch before, but since moving into the Williams mansion he started to care, a lot.

The Williams treated them like family, like equals and he’d never realized before just how good that felt. The Council on the other hand was still having problems trusting them since he’d turned Danni without their permission. His mate beating the shit out of a Council member hadn’t helped either. So while he was officially on probation the Council members had decided that his probation extended to Danni as well now that they were mated.

“Since I was able to get the Council to take you both off probation,” Eric, the Sentinel Leader for New England, said with a wink as he walked into the large room, flanked by five other men. Technically they should be under the watch of another Sentinel leader since they lived in New York, but Ephraim and Chris had refused to work with anyone else.

“We’re off probation?” Danni asked with a mixture of surprise and caution.

Not that he could blame her since it had only been two months since he’d been released from his punishment for turning Danni and he seriously doubted that he’d done anything spectacular enough to earn this. That of course meant….

“We need your help,” Eric said, confirming his suspicions.

“Am I off probation for good or just until whatever bullshit assignment that the Council needs help with is completed?” Caine asked, moving to clench his hand tightly into a fist when he remembered that his mate needed the comfort of tracing his hand with her fingertips.

“Well,” Eric said, not one to bullshit him, as he sat down across from him, “you’re off probation, but if you f**k up again you’ll be punished as though you’d never been released from it.”

“They can’t do that!” Danni argued, her movements on his hand increasing with her agitation.

“So basically if I f**k up there’s no warning whatsoever?” Caine guessed, closing his hand around Danni’s trembling one and giving it a small squeeze to tell her that everything was going to be okay.

“Basically, yes,” Eric said with a nod as he gestured for the other men to sit down.

“How exactly is that different from being on probation?” he demanded, entwining his fingers with Danni’s as he noted that the other men sat on the opposite side of the table with Eric.

“You’ll both be given Leadership status, pay, and-”

“We don’t give a flying f**k about any of that,” Caine said, cutting off the man that he respected. “I want to know what happens to my mate if I f**k up.”

“Her status will be revoked,” Eric said, reminding him why he liked this man so much.

He didn’t play games, didn’t make promises to Caine that he didn’t plan on keeping in order to get what he wanted and wasn’t afraid of him. That didn’t mean that Caine was going to sit back and let the Council f**k them over, because he wasn’t.