“What?” I asked, glancing at Luc while wishing I had another weapon to throw at him. Maybe a missile. That would be great.

“This,” she snapped, holding up my . . . fake ID.

I gaped in disbelief. She was holding the ID that Luc had taken from me on Friday night. I’d forgotten that he still had it.

Luc winked when I turned to him.

I was struck speechless. Literally. No words. He came here, almost got his head blown off and then knocked off by a candleholder just to rat me out? All when he could’ve just given it to me yesterday.

Then his words came back to me. When I said I would see you again, I hadn’t meant today.

He’d known yesterday that he’d had that ID and he hadn’t given it back to me.

I couldn’t even believe it.

This wasn’t happening to me. All I wanted to do with my Sunday was drink my apple juice and watch Hoarders. That was all.

That look hit Mom’s face, the one that said I was seconds from being buried in the backyard and her ending up on some show about when mothers kill their young. “I . . .”

She tilted her head to the side, waiting.

It was Luc who spoke up, because of course he would. “Your daughter left that at Foretoken on Friday night.”

My jaw was on the floor.

His smirk grew to a point that it took everything in me not to jump on him like a rabid platypus, and that would be bad, because a platypus was poisonous. I knew this, because, well, the Internet. “I thought you would like to know she was there. More than once, I might add.”

My eyes were going to pop out of my face. I couldn’t believe he was doing this, especially after he’d made it scarily clear that I better not say one word about what I’d seen at the club.

Luc wasn’t done yet. “She left her phone there Friday night and came back for it yesterday morning. I was kind enough to keep it safe and give it back to her.”

“Kind enough?” I shrieked. “You tried to—” I caught myself at the last moment. If I said he tried to kidnap me, then I’d have to explain why, which involved a horde of illegal Luxen. As much as I wanted to see Mom go all badass on him again, I wouldn’t put those Luxen in danger. Or her. He arched a brow, and I finished with a sad, “You are not nice.”

He pressed his lips together as if he were fighting a laugh or a smile.

Mom didn’t respond. She didn’t need to. I was dead, so dead, and I was going to come back as a ghost just to haunt Luc for the rest of his godforsaken life.

Then she finally spoke. “Is that all, Luc?”

“Are you making lunch?” he asked. “I’d do bad, bad things for a homemade grilled cheese sandwich.”

I gaped at him.

“And tomato soup. That would be an amazing combination,” he added after a moment.

“No,” Mom bit out. “I am not making you lunch, Luc.”

He sighed heavily. “Well, that’s disappointing.”

“Is that all?” she repeated.

“I guess so.” He sighed, sounding bored. He started to turn but stopped. He faced Mom again. “Oh yeah, one more thing. All bets are off now. You feel me?”

Mom stiffened. “Luc—”

“No, no.” He tsked softly. “Don’t think you really want to get into the details right now. So I just want to hear one thing from you, or we’ll all be having a very interesting conversation that will include grilled cheese and tomato soup.”

What in the hell were they talking about?

Mom’s lips thinned. “I feel you.”

“Perfect.” Luc’s gaze met mine and held it for a moment too long. A shiver slipped down my arms, rattling my bones. He turned and strolled back to the door. “Peace out.”

Luc walked out of the house like none of that had just happened, quietly closing the door behind him.

And I was still standing there, half afraid to even look at Mom. My thoughts were whirling all over the place as I inched over to my right and picked up my apple juice. I downed half the glass and then put it back on the coaster.

Mom still hadn’t spoken.

“Um, I didn’t know Luxen could just unlock doors.” I took a step back from her. “That’s actually a really scary piece of knowledge that . . .”

Mom glared at me.

“That . . . um, should be more widely known,” I finished lamely as I walked around to the chair and sat down on the edge. My heart was still thundering.

She inhaled noisily through her nose as a strand of her sleek blond hair fell forward, against her cheek. “What were you doing at Foretoken?” She paused. “The first time.”

“Okay.” I swallowed hard. “I know you’re mad, but I have questions too. Like why would there be a shotgun hidden under the couch cushions?”

Mom’s brows rose.

All right, that might not have been the best thing to ask, but it was a valid question, and I had another very serious question. “And how do you know him?”

Her eyes widened in a way that suggested she thought I might’ve lost my mind. “I’m the one who is in the position to be asking questions, Evelyn Lee. Not you.”

Oh no, now the middle name just came out.

“So, let me ask one more time, and it better be the last: What were you doing at Foretoken?”

“We just wanted to go out,” I said, pushing my hair off my face as I stared at the door Luc had unlocked with his freaking mind. How did I not know they could do that? Well, most Luxen wore the Disabler, so I’d never seen them do anything like that. “I know I shouldn’t have, but I . . . I don’t have a good enough reason.”

“Damn straight, you don’t have a good enough reason.” Mom bent down, swiftly picking up the ruined shotgun. “Where did you get this ID?”

I shrugged.

“Evelyn,” she snapped.

“I don’t know. From someone at school.” No way was I throwing James under the bus. “It’s not a big deal—”

“It’s a huge deal.” Mom tossed the shotgun onto the other chair. “Not only is that club for twenty-one and up, as I am sure you know, it’s not a safe place.”

I cringed. Folding my arms in my lap, I leaned forward. “I know I messed up.”

“You lied to me.” She picked up the couch cushion and then slammed it into place. “That is not okay.”

Feeling like I was about two feet tall, I watched her straighten up the couch. “I’m sorry.”

She plucked up the candleholder and faced me. “Did you see him Friday night? Luc?”

Knowing that lying to her again wouldn’t be smart but telling the complete truth would be even worse, I chose my words very carefully. “I did.”

She closed her eyes as her jaw jutted out. I knew she was searching for a calm, happy place.

“It’s not like I hung out with him, Mom. I just . . . talked to him.”

A moment passed and then she opened her eyes again. Sitting on the couch, close to me, she held the candleholder. “What did he say to you?”

I shook my head, a little confused. “Nothing really. He just demanded to know why I was there and then said I shouldn’t be.” I saw her shoulders relax a little. “Mom, how do you know him? How does he know where we live?”

She didn’t answer as she lowered her gaze. A long moment passed while I waited. Mom always looked younger than her age. She was in her late forties, but I always thought she could’ve passed for someone in her thirties.

Until right then.

Faint lines were etched into the skin around the corners of her eyes, and she looked tired. Maybe those lines had always been there and now, with a weariness clinging to her skin and bones, I could see them.

“Luc knew your father,” she said finally.

That was the last thing I expected her to say. “How? How is that possible? Luc’s about my age, right? Did Dad know him when Luc first arrived here?”

Mom pressed her lips together. “Honey, I don’t know. . . . I don’t know how to tell you any of this. I’d hoped I would never have to, but I guess that was foolish of me. I should’ve known this day was coming.”