Fantastical Page 26

Hmm.

“And say, when we, uh… relieve ourselves. Can they track that?” I asked.

“That’s acid so… no.”

Interesting.

“Just saliva?”

“That and other bodily fluids.”

“Like?”

“Blood. Semen. But not urine.”

Yuck!

Time to move on before he went on.

“Okay, that’s enough with the bodily fluids and other, um… bodily functions. Can they track scent? Hair?”

“Fluids only.”

How weird.

So weird, my brows shot up. “Seriously?”

One side of his mouth twitched. “Seriously.”

He looked hot with one side of his mouth twitching so I decided I was done.

Therefore, I stated, “Thank you for the lesson. You can go now.”

His eyes stayed glued to mine and I let them mostly because I had no choice. The guy had proven time and again he was freaking strong so I could never best him physically and wasn’t going to try.

The bummer of this was, he didn’t move.

Then he said quietly, “We must talk.”

“Welp, Prince Noctorno, sorry to disappoint you but I am way, so done talking to you.”

He shook his head. “We must talk,” he repeated.

“I have nothing to say and you have nothing to say I want to hear.”

“We need to talk about what happened in the church.”

My body went solid. “No, we absolutely, definitely, without a doubt, totally do not need to talk about what happened in the church.”

“Cora –”

“Go away.”

“Cora –”

“I said go away. I’m tired. My body’s sore from riding all day. I need sleep before I’m on my way again…” I paused then finished, “on foot.”

“Cora –”

“Don’t worry, I won’t bleed on anything. I, obviously, don’t have any se**n so we’re good on that score and I promise to be careful with my saliva.”

“Gods damn it, Cora.”

“Seriously! Go!”

He didn’t go.

Nope. He didn’t.

What he did do was dart a hand out, wrap his fingers around my ankle and yank it out and straight down the bed. Unfortunately, as my body was attached to it, it too went down the bed. Then he shifted to lying and rolled right, smack on top of me.

I shoved at his shoulders, shouting, “Get off me!”

“Calm yourself,” he commanded.

“Get… off… me!”

“Calm yourself!” he barked.

“And what if I don’t!” I yelled back. “You gonna shake me so hard I see stars? Or toss me around?”

“I had another idea to get you to obey.”

“Spanking? Whipping? Wait, that might draw blood –”

“Cora –”

“Water torture?”

“No, Cora, f**king you so hard you can’t bloody breathe and you’re so damned exhausted after, you can’t move and you’re forced to shut your mouth and bloody listen.”

I snapped my mouth shut.

Shit, I should have never taught him that word.

“That did it,” he muttered.

“You want to talk, talk,” I invited, my tone surly.

He scowled down at me.

Then he sucked in a breath and started, “I hurt you –”

“Yep,” I confirmed. “I checked and I’ve got the bruises to prove it.”

This time the flinch was not nearly imperceptible. This time he flinched flat out.

“Gods,” he whispered.

“You can say that again.”

His eyes warmed again and his hand came up to cup my jaw. “Love, I’m –”

I jerked my head away, doing my best to angle my body to keep it away. My eyes tilted to him and I reminded him, “I told you, don’t touch me.”

“I scared you,” he muttered, studying me, his hand dropping to the pillow by my head and I relaxed.

“Yep, you did that too. Shitless.”

His brows knit. “Shitless?”

“Yes, shitless, as in, you scared me so badly, I was incapacitated. I couldn’t think. You made me cower in front of you like a weak thing. You scared me so much you forced me to humiliate myself in front of you. So, you’ve shaken me before, you’ve spanked me, twice, and done other stuff that’s not very cool but that, that, Noctorno, I cannot forgive you for. I could fight the vickrants with you and, I’ll admit, I was terrified out of my brain while I did but you… it was you who scared me so much, I couldn’t… fucking… breathe.”

He closed his eyes slowly and with them closed he whispered, “Cora, sweets –”

“Get off me.”

His eyes opened. “My love –”

“Don’t call me that!” I snapped and his hand suddenly was back at my face, cupping my cheek, his thumb pressing against my lips and his face dipped lower so it was all I could see.

“Please, let me speak.”

I lifted a hand to pull his thumb from my mouth and hurled, “Fuck that and f**k you!”

“I’m uncertain I understand all the meanings of this word,” he replied quietly.

“I think you get the gist,” I guessed.

Then he suddenly stated, “We were losing.”

I blinked in my surprise, letting my guard down which was foolish. It was foolish because my fingers were still wrapped around his thumb. He twisted his wrist, laced his fingers through mine and then rested our entwined hands on the bed by my shoulder.

“I was in a foul mood because I was concerned because we were losing,” he semi-repeated.

“Losing what?”

“Against the vickrants.”

This was confusing.

“We were?”

“Yes, love.”

“But I thought we were kicking ass,” I told him and his mouth twitched again.

Then he informed me, “We were but if that village was a mile further away, they would have overwhelmed us. What we fought was only the first wave. The second wave was coming, I heard it, Salem heard it; they were close. If they made it to us, they were triple in number, they would have overwhelmed us and you would be gone.”

I felt my eyes grow wide as my mouth formed the whispered words, “Holy crap.”

“I’m not certain what that means but the way you say it makes me think it says it all.”

“It does,” I whispered.

He held my eyes.

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