Mia wasn’t entirely surprised to find Damien and his mother waiting in the lobby as their party was leaving. Mia was still too sore to move, so Nick was carrying her, her arms wrapped around his neck. Ada walked beside them wheeling her suitcase and carrying Mia’s duffle. William and Aiden followed behind them. Surrounding them was a team of Guild members dressed in plain clothes. They were still conspicuous, but at least being in plain clothes didn’t shout Guild to anyone watching.
They were headed towards the main entrance where four black SUVs waited for them at the curb. Being in the middle of the crowd, Mia didn’t realize they were there until she heard her name called.
Mia recognized the voice immediately and ignored it. She wasn’t ready yet to speak to that woman. She knew she would need to eventually, but all the anger and resentment she felt at that woman’s words still consumed her.
But she was not the only one that heard her. Nick stopped and turned towards the voice. She knew he immediately recognized Damien Chen, and he had spoken to Ada and William so he at least had an idea of who the woman was.
“Mia?” The woman said her name again, taking a step towards their group but quickly came to a stop when the men around them blocked her way. Mia refused to look at her, instead she looked at Damien icily.
“Mother, not here,” Damien said, stepping forward to pull his mother back, but she easily shook off his hold.
“We don’t have time to wait for it to be a good time for her. She is running out of time. Her body won’t last much longer and if her soul shatters before we have a chance to find her real body, then we will lose our one greatest weapon in this war,” Iliya Chen declared loudly and clear enough for everyone in the lobby to see.
The rage in Mia flared as she finally met her mother’s jade green eyes. The woman stared back at her, determination set in her eyes.
“What is she talking about?” Nick demanded to know as he looked down at Mia. Mia gritted her teeth together as clenched her fists behind Nick’s neck. “Mia?”
“I will never forgive you for this,” Mia said icily as she glared at the woman who gave her life.
“Mia,” Nick’s voice was soft, but like steel.
“Let’s talk about this later,” Mia said, all too aware of the eyes and ears around them. Nick seemed to realize the same thing as he nodded, before motioning to the guards with them.
“Those two are coming with us.” The men nodded as they opened a whole big enough for Iliya and Damien to enter. Iliya stormed right in, Damien followed her, watching the men around them warily.
“I am sorry about this,” Damien said softly to Mia as they came to a stop in front them. Mia said nothing because there was nothing she could say. If she opened her mouth right now, nothing good would come of it. So instead she gritted her teeth tightly together and kept her eyes looking straight forward. She could feel the tension in Nick’s shoulder and knew it was only a matter of time before he exploded. She had planned to tell him the truth. She had never planned to keep it from him. But she planned on speaking to him in private, in their home where they didn’t have to worry about anyone overhearing them. But thanks to that woman, now Ada, William and Aiden knew something was up, that something had happened that she purposely kept from them. She was sure they weren’t happy but she refused to look at them. She was already pissed enough. There was no need in making things worse.
As they exited the building, their guards ushered them in to the waiting vehicles. Nick helped Mia in to the back seat of the middle SUV before climbing in next to her. Ada got in from the other side while two of their guards got in to the front seat.
Ada said nothing, but the stiff back she kept to Mia told her everything she needed to know. Ada was silent the whole ride and kept her eyes staring straight out the window. Nick was stiff, but he kept an arm around Mia’s shoulder, holding her against his side. She knew he was holding himself together with sheer self-determination. She knew he would have loved to demand she tell him everything right that moment, but he was too aware of their escorts. These were Marco’s men and he might trust them, but Mia didn’t and neither did Nick.
The ride to the private airfield went quick as it was still the early hours of the morning. There wasn’t much traffic on the road and they made good time. A guild jet was waiting for them on the runway and they quickly embarked. They were up in the air with ten minutes. Mia lay curled in a row of seats with her head resting on Nick’s lap. His fingers absently running through her curls. Their guests were placed in the back of the plane with the guild guards sitting between them and Mia’s group.
It was about a three hour flight they had been told, Mia spent much of it sleeping. She was still so sore and tired that it was hard keeping her eyes open. It didn’t help that Nick’s fingers felt so good. She awoke a few minutes before they touched down when she had to sit back up to put her seat belt on.
Once they landed, Nick picked her back up and headed to a waiting black Landrover. Nick had nearly reached it when the driver’s side door opened and Ronan stepped out.
“What happened?” He demanded to know when they neared.
“We’ll talk about it later, help me get Mia in,” Nick ordered and Ronan ran around to get the back door opened. Nick gently lay her down on the back seat and closed the door behind them. Mia curled up, resting her head on her bent arm. She could hear Nick and Ronan talking softly outside but she didn’t bother to try and listen in. She was still so tired that she had fallen back asleep before they even left the airport.
She only awoke again when the car door shutting shook the car. Mia barely had time to open her eyes before the door by her feet was opened.
“Come on, Baby, we’re here,” Nick said gently as he helped her out. Mia expected to find brownstone where she and Ronan lived, but instead she was surprised to find an even more welcome sight. Nick’s family home with Nathaniel waving at her from the front porch. He had taken down the Christmas decorations since the last time she had been there, but everything else still looked the same. A cheery large wooden cabin surrounded by a forest of trees.
“What are we doing here?” Mia asked, her voice a little hoarse as she clutched tightly to Nick’s arm as he helped her set her feet carefully on the snow covered gravel.
“I had a feeling that you needed to be here,” He told her before brushing a kiss on her forehead. “They other should be arriving later tonight when they’re done with work, so we have time to rest.”
Mia just nodded numbly as she leaned in to Nick’s warm.
“Did you need me to carry you?” He asked as he looked down at her. Mia shook her head, she really was feeling better after all the sleep she had gotten. She was still sore, but not so much that she couldn’t walk, she just made sure to keep a tight grip of Nick so she didn’t slip and fall.
“It’s to good to see you, my dear,” Nathaniel said as they met up with him. He wrapped Mia in a tight hug, pressing a kiss against her cheek. Looking at him, sometimes it was hard to remember that he was a good five hundred years old. He looked younger than Nick by a good ten years that sometimes it was hard to remember that he was Nick’s grandfather.
“I need to talk to you about something important later,” Mia whispered so softly in Nathaniel’s ear that Nick, who stood a few feet away had no way of hearing. Nathaniel gave no sign of having heard her when he pulled away, but he gave her a slight nodd when he pulled away with a smile.
“The others will be arriving later tonight, so Mia and I are just going to rest until they get here,” Nick said as he moved to take his grandfather’s place at Mia’s side.
“Good, good,” Nathaniel nodded, “I have your room prepared when I got your call. There’s some soup and sandwiches if your want to eat something before cleaning up.”
As tempting as hot soup sounded at the moment, Mia wasn’t hungry at all. She just shook her head politely and clung to Nick as he let her in to the house.
“Maybe after a nap,” Nick said as he led the way down the hall and the small room Mia had been given at the back of the house behind the kitchen. They passed Nathaniel’s cook and maid, Betsy on the way back. They gave her a quick greeting before ducking in to the room. They still had clothes there from the last time they had visited so while Nick went to prepare the bathroom, he left Mia to rest on the soft bed.
Mia was so tempted to lie down and close her eyes once more but she knew that if she did she wouldn’t be waking up till much later. Nick must have sensed the same thing because he was back in a matter of moments to pick her up and lead her in to the small bathroom.
He helped her get out of her clothes, which would have been nearly impossible for her at the moment and helped her step in to the stream of hot water. It took only a moment for him to join her. She laughed a little when he swore as he tried to squeeze his large frame into the tight shower stall. There was definitely not enough space in there for the two of them, but Mia had no intention of kicking him out, not when she needed him so much. There was nothing sexual about the need, she was way too sore and tired for that, but she just needed his nearness and it seemed to be the same for him.
He helped her wash her hair and body, every now and then he would brush a gentle kiss against her neck, her hip, and even the spot above her heart, but he didn’t push for more. This was more about connection then sex. Besides, if they had tried to do anything in the shower, they probably would have ended up drowning each other. She did giggle a couple of times when he banged and elbow and a knee, once he even hit his head against the tiled wall as he stood up too fast.
This shower was definitely not made for sex. When they were finally clean, he got out first so that he could help her out and wrapped a nice fluffy towel around her. He grabbed another to wrap around her wet hair.
It was kind of nice, the attention and gentleness with which he was treating her. It was almost as if he thought she was fragile when they both knew it was the opposite. She was no fragile flower, she was a killer, her very blood a weapon.
When he finished drying himself off and stood before her with only a towel wrapped around her waist, she couldn’t help but smile at him. He really was so handsome it hurt her to look at him and not touch him. But she wasn’t ready to have sex with him yet. It wasn’t like she didn’t want to, because right now, she very much wanted to. But with matters as is and her mental and physical state, getting in to a sexual relationship was too much.
It wasn’t only that either, there were other things she wasn’t prepared for. Pregnancy was one of them. If there was something she definitely wanted to avoid, it was pregnancy. Not after how her last one ended. Especially with the way her body was falling apart. She didn’t want to risk losing another child, it would be too much for her, too much for this body, and way too much for the stolen soul she had taken over.
Even when Ada had jokingly mentioned it the day before, it had been too much for Mia. The thought of being pregnant had literally made her sick. She was not prepared for that, not now and probably not any time in the future.
Nick helped her get dressed in a loose night shirt and a pair of plain cotton underwear. She watched his smirk as he glanced and the plain white cotton granny panties.
“What? Don’t like my choice of underwear?” Mia joked. He shook he head as she stood up so he was staring down at her, his golden eyes flashing.
“No, I was just thinking how damn sexy they are,” Nick told her with only made her laugh because she knew he wasn’t joking. “I don’t need sexy underwear, all I need is you.”
He bent forward, brushing a soft kiss against her lips.
“Besides, you don’t mind as much when I rip these up,” He said against her lips with brought a warm flush to her cheeks as she remembered the one of the few times they had sex right after their memories had awoken. He had been in such a rush that he had ripped all her clothes off of her. She had been irritate because she had such a limited number of them, but he had promised to get her more.
“Don’t get any ideas,” She warned him as she lightly pushed on his chest. He brushed one last kiss against her lips before stepping back.
“You’re right, we probably don’t have any time to do anything,” Nick said with a sigh as he pulled on a pair of boxer briefs before leading her back to the bed. He flipped back the old quilt and tucked Mia in before climbing in next to her. The bed wasn’t very big so they either had to spoon or Mia had to practically lay half on him, which she didn’t mind. Nathaniel has offered to have a bigger bed brought in when Nick first started sleeping in the room with her but Nick has said no. He liked having Mia close to him, a bigger bed would have been wasted on them.
Mia curled up against Nick and quickly fell asleep. She knew they would have to talk when they woke up, but for a little while, she just wanted to ignore all the problems outside their room and pretend that everything was all right. In Nick’s arms, she could forget about everything else. With that last thought, Mia drifted off to sleep.
When she woke hours later, she found that she was alone. She touched the spot where Nick has been and found it was still warm, so wherever he had gone, it hadn’t been that long ago. Stretching out her arms and legs she was pleased to find that all the pain had vanished and she was feeling much better.
Push the blanket back she rolled out of bed. She knew the others would be arriving shortly so she pulled on a pair of jeans, a bra and one of Nick’s sweatshirts. She swum in it, the hem practically fell to her knees and she had to roll the sleeves up, but she liked it.
Pulled on a pair of thick fuzzy socks she went in search of food. She wasn’t surprised to find Nick already in the kitchen. He and Nathaniel were talking softly but they stopped when they saw her. Nathaniel offered her a bright smile as Nick looked her over from heat to foot. She knew she probably looked a mess but Nick from the heated look in Nick’s eyes, he didn’t see her that way.
“Good morning, dear,” Nathaniel said as he patted the stool beside him. “Come and join us, we were just talking about a family get together.”
She drifted over to the kitchen bar to see what he was doing. He stood over one of the gas burners tossing shrimp in garlic and butter in one of Nathaniel’s expensive stainless steel frying pans.
“A family get together, hmm?” Mia said as she pulled herself up on the stool.
“You all good?” Nick asked as he set the frying pain back down on the burner and turned off the heat.
“Good as new,” She promised as she practically drooled as he grabbed a plate from one of the cupboards and loaded in with linguine he had cool in the colander in the sink. He pour the butter, garlic and shrimp over the pasta and dusted it with Parmesan cheese and fresh ground pepper before placing it in front of Mia with a fork he grabbed from another draw.
“Have I told you how much I love you yet today?” Mia asked as she dug in to the pasta. Her man could definitely cook and it was a good thing do since about the only thing she could do without burning it, was turning the coffee machine on, and even that was iffy.
Nathaniel just chuckled as he watched her dig into the pasta. Nick quickly made his plate as took a seat beside her.
“So have you spoken to your mother yet?” Nathaniel asked, taking a sip from his mug as he directed his attention. Mia’s fork stilled in her hand, the food halfway to her mouth. It took her a moment to realize Nathaniel had directed his question to Nick and not her. When she did, she quickly went back to eating, hoping neither of the two men had noticed although she knew it was highly unlikely with these two.
“No, that time I spoke to her she said she would be heading home in a week or two. I thought it was a matter better discussed in person,” Nick said in between bites, “Why, did she say something to you?”
“No, nothing really. She had just mentioned looking through the attic for a box of old keepsakes,” Nathaniel replied.
Mia liked Nick’s mom. They hadn’t spend much time together. It had been for the short time that Mia and Nick had stayed at the family home during the holidays that they were able to speak. Nick was still a little distant from his parents and sister but Mia had seen just how much they loved him and how much they regretted the distance between them. Nick’s mother Juliet had accepted Mia without blinking an eye. She knew exactly who and what Mia was, but it didn’t matter. All that mattered was that Nick loved her and that she loved Nick.
She had told Mia when it was time for them to get married, she hoped that Mia would wear the dress Juliet had worn when she had wed Nick’s father. Mia had been too surprised by the comment to say anything. The woman barely knew Mia and in just a matter of days she was already talking about marriage. Juliet had told her then next time Mia had some time, they should go through the attic together to look for the dress and some of the jewelry that Juliet has received from Nathaniel’s wife for her wedding. She knew just how perfect it would all go together.
At the mention of attic and keepsakes, Mia suddenly got suspicious as she eyed the two men beside her.
“You were saying something about a family gathering before, what time of family gathering were you thinking about?” Mia said as she turned to Nathaniel who was far more easier to read than Nick was.
“Oh, nothing big really, I just thought it would be good to get some family and friends together. With the way things are going now days, who knows when or if we’ll be able to see these people again, ” Nathaniel said with a sad smile as he patted Mia’s free hand, “We were just going over the guest list when you joined us.”
“And this has to do with Juliet wanting to look through the attic for keepsakes?” Mia questioned.
“Who knows what mom wants, she’s been obsessed with cleaning out the attic recently,” Nick offered with a shrug. Mia frowned as she looked between the two of them. Her finger absently twirling the gold band around her right thumb. Nathaniel and Nick caught the movement. When she noticed them watching she immediately stopped. They knew it was a nervous habit that she did only when she was worried.
“You know, we can get the ring sized if you insist on wearing it,” Nick offered as he picked up her right hand in his, “Or like we discussed before, I can always buy you a pretty new one with a row of sparkly diamonds on it.”
Mia just shook her head. He had mentioned buying her a ring before, but she had said no. Not because she didn’t want to marry him, because in her head she was already married to him, it was the reason she wore his band on her finger. She just hadn’t wanted a new ring because she still remembered the old one, a simple thin gold band he had made himself. It hasn’t been fancy, there were no stones set it, but it has been enough for her because he had made it himself. Part of her wondered if wherever her real body was, the gold band still sat on her finger. It has been there when she had gone to Mia, but she wasn’t sure if the band would travel with her when her body appeared beside’s her father’s tomb. After all her clothes never made it, she always woke up covered in blood and naked, so it was unlikely that her ring hadn’t gone with her.
That thought saddened her. She wondered if someone had found her ring and melted it down, or if it was buried somewhere long forgotten.
“I like this one,” Mia said simply. Nick said nothing but brushed a kiss against the top of her head before picking up his empty plate and taking it over the sink where he placed it in a basin of soapy water. Mia looked down at her half-eaten plate sorrowfully. She was no longer hungry but she hated to waste such good food. As if reading her mind, Nick grabbed her plate and finished off the food on it. It was nice having someone around her knew her so well.
“The other should be arriving in a hour,” Nathaniel said as he glanced down at his watch. “Alastair said he, Marco and Delilah would be bringing our guests. Ronan said he would pick up Sarah and Ada. I gave the staff the rest of the night off so we should have the place to ourselves.”
“Good,” Nick said as he stood up and dumped her plate in the soapy water before he began cleaning up the kitchen. Mia felt bad for not helping, she actually use to be handy in the kitchen, but then again that was back before everything was so fancy and high tech. Give her a wood stove and she could prepare a mean beef stew and brown bread.
Nathaniel reached over to grab Mia’s hand a give it a squeeze, “Sarah explained to us about the visions you have been having lately and about the bleeding. I wish you hadn’t thought you needed to deal with it on your own. I want you know that no matter what happens to you in the future, we will always be there for you.”
“It wasn’t that I didn’t think you wouldn’t be there, it was that it was something I needed to deal with on my own,” Mia admitted.
“Why?” Nick demanded to know as he took he seat beside her once more, “Why did you need to deal with this on your own?”
“The things I saw, they were things I didn’t want you to know about, things I wasn’t ready to talk about,” Mia said softly as she stared down at the hand that Nathaniel still clasped in his own.
“What things Mia?” Nathaniel asked kindly as he leaned forward.
Mia kept her eyes down, her breathing had become slightly ragged and her free hand was clenched tightly in her lap. She knew she owed them an explanation. She knew she should tell them, but when she tried, when she opened her mouth her throat got tied and the words wouldn’t come.
“It’s okay, baby,” Nick said as he gathered her in his arms and pulled her on to his lap, pressing her cheek against her hard chest. “I understand. You don’t need to say the words.”
He rocked her back and forth gently as she clutched tightly to the arm that held her.
“You don’t need to say anything. I know how hard it is to talk about,” Nick’s voice was ragged as brushed another kiss against her head.
“All I saw was blood and I couldn’t make it stop. I thought my mind was going to shatter. I kept seeing it over and over again and I just wanted to make it stop,” She admitted, “I couldn’t take it anymore. Even when you were there in bed besides me, I kept seeing your empty eyes and all I wanted to do was scream.”
“Shhh,” Nick whispered in her ear, “It’s okay, we’re here now. We’ll find a way to stop the visions. We’ll find a way to make them go away.”
“I don’t think you can,” Mia told them softly. “I thought I was going crazy, but it turns out it’s much worse then that.”
“Why Mia? What’s wrong?” Nathaniel asked as he leaned forward so that he could look in her eyes.
“It turns out that whatever Thea did to put my soul into this body is also destroying it. My powers are too strong for the body and it slowly killing this body. Not only that but the power is also too much for the soul. Iliya Chen claims that if things keep going they way they are going, this soul will shatter,” Mia told them.
Nick’s arms became like steel bands around her. His whole body stiffened at her words. Nathaniel let out a long breath and he leaned back in his chair, looking from Mia to Nick worriedly.
“Nick told me what she said at the hotel. Now it makes sense. She believes there is a way to save you, but how?” Nathaniel said after a long moment of silence as they processed her words.
“She says that the only way to save me is to find my true body. That I have to transfer my consciousness back to my real body and soul,” Mia told them.
“What does she mean your real body?” Nick’s voice was gruff, a deep frown marred his lips as he gazed down at Mia. Mia chewed on her lips and she tried to decide how best to tell them the truth. They knew she wasn’t avoiding the question so they didn’t pressure her, instead they waited patiently for her to continue.
“Before I met you, the Kai you, I was in a really dark place. I was slowly beginning to lose my mind. I began to realize that everything we had done, the soldiers we had worked so hard to create were wrong. I was always different from my sisters. My powers were always stronger, darker. I took after my father far more than my sisters. I was afraid I was slowly becoming him,” Mia explained.
“I didn’t even tell my sisters had bad it had gotten. They thought that I never left my territory to visit them was because I was afraid to leave my father’s tomb unguarded. They never knew that I couldn’t leave. I was trapped. I had tried on multiple occasions to leave, to get away, but I couldn’t. It always ended the same. The moment I tried to breach the barrier, my body would be wracked with pain, so much pain that if I remained too long I would pass out. I didn’t realize at first what was happening. One moment I was struggling to break through the barrier, the next I would wake up naked and covered in blood at the foot of my father’s altar.”
“I did this over and over again, refusing to believe that I was trapped. And each and every time the exact same thing would happen. I was so close to breaking, so very close to losing myself when Thea told me that Emily had come to her, telling her she wanted a mate. Thea told me she had a vision and she had seen that there was a man that among the Stormwalker Clan who was the mate destined for her sister. I don’t know why I did it, but I offered my private home for their meeting place. They wanted all of us there and I couldn’t leave. The Stormwalker Clan lived within my territory so it was only right that I open my home to them.”
Nick’s arms tightened around her as she told her story, “I was ready to give up that day. I was prepared to end it all. I didn’t want to become the same monster our father was. I was afraid that I would and that was that the last thing I wanted to become. I had planned to talk to Thea, to ask her to take over my clan. I had planned to wait till the Bonding ceremony was over to bring it up.”
“But you didn’t,” Nick said.
“No, I didn’t,” Mia said shaking her head, “It was supposed to be Emily who found her mate that day, but instead it was me. When I saw you in that first moment I knew with every part of my body and soul that you were mines. I saw you and in that one moment I knew you. It was as if my eyes had finally been opened and I was finally able to see you.”
Mia looked up at Nick with a smile, he bend forward, pressing his lips against her own in a slow tender kiss.
“And I you,” He told her.
“After I found you, things got better for a little while. Even with everything my clan did, I still didn’t feel the pull of the darkness like I had before you came. For the ten years that we were together, I found peace. I knew the darkness was still out there, that it was still a threat, but when you were with me, I didn’t feel it like I had before.”
“And then that day came, when they finally came for us. We had both seen the signs, we knew what was coming. We were as prepared as we could have been. But then we found out I was…” Mia stumbled over the next words, because it still hurt to say them.
“That you were pregnant,” Nick finished for her, she nodded as she looked up at him, she saw the tears gathering in his eyes and she nodded.
“You were pregnant?” Nathaniel said, his voice soft and confused, “but you never mentioned a child.”
The next words he was about the say died on his tongue as he realized what happened. He looked at Mia, his bright blue eyes dimmed before turning to his grandson.
“You lost the child,” He said, his voice soft and filled with sorrow.
Mia nodded, “My clan came for us. Our existence was too much of a threat for them. They needed to get rid of us and they knew it. Nick tried to protect me. He didn’t want me to fight, he didn’t want to take the risk of something happening. I wasn’t so far along that you could tell, but they must have known somehow because I was there main target.”
“Nick tried to protect me, he tried so hard. But there were too many of them,” Mia said as tears began to fall down her cheeks, “I didn’t see it happen, but I felt it. I felt a sharp pain in my chest and I knew. I knew he was gone. I don’t know what happened next, the world faded and all I felt was the pain. He was gone and I was all alone. The madness I had fought so hard against, consumed me. Everything faded away but my desire for revenge. I did something then that I had never done before. I shaped weapons out of my blood, weapons that could cut through anything and everything. My clan tried to fight but they were defenseless before my blood blades. I tore threw them. I didn’t stop until each and every one of them was dead. I was so consumed by my rage that I didn’t realize that I was injured badly and that I was losing a lot of blood. Too much for my body.”
“When it was over, I stood in a pool of blood, surrounded by bodies of those I had created. I felt nothing when I looked at their bodies., no sorrow, no pain, no regret. They were nothing. But it wasn’t enough. I craved more, more death, more destruction. They had done this to me and I wouldn’t be satisfied until they all paid, until they all felt the same pain that I had.”
“I had become my father. I became consumed with my pain and my need for revenge that it didn’t matter than anyone else I went after was completely innocent of any crime towards me. It didn’t matter. I just wanted to make other people suffer like I was.”
“But you didn’t,” Nick said with a certainty that pushed Mia to shame, because she couldn’t have been sure she wouldn’t have if she hadn’t stumbled upon his body.
“No, I didn’t,” Mia admitted, “I had been going to and I would have.”
“But you didn’t,” Nick reminded her as he ran a hand up and down her back.
“What stopped you?” Nathaniel asked with a frown on his lips.
“I stumbled and fell,” Mia said, the words getting stuck in her throat as she remembered Nick’s empty eyes staring at her. A shiver ran down her back as the image filled her vision. Her heart sped up and her breath came in gasps as everything faded but his face.
“Shhh,” Nick whispered in her ear as he rubbed her back, “I’m right here. I’m fine and so are you.”
Mia shook her head as she tried to focus, tried to push the vision away. “I’m not fine. I’m falling apart and I can’t make it stop. I can’t make the visions stop. I can’t stop seeing it. I can’t stop feeling the pain and loss. I don’t know how much longer I can take this. I don’t know how many times I can lose the two of you.”
Nick clasped her face between his two large hands and forced her eyes to meet his own. He brought his face so close to hers that all she could see where the two bright golden eyes that stared in to her own.
“I am here, I am alive, and I will not lose you,” He told her, “I mourn the loss of our child just as you do. I mourn the loss of what could have been. But we have been given a second chance and I will not lose you. Not to our past, not to yourself, I will fight for you even when you give up. You are quite literally the other half of my soul and no matter what, I will always find you. Be it in this life or the next, I will always find you.”
Tears streamed down Mia’s eyes as she stared up at him. He bent forward to kiss away her tears as she wrapped her arms tightly around his neck not caring that they had an audience, she pulled his lips to her own in a hungry kiss filled with all of her pent up emotions, her fear, her sorrow, and her need. What she felt for him went beyond love. She needed him like she needed air. She needed him to keep on living. She knew that she couldn’t live without him and that’s what made her next words so painful.
“If this body fails and my souls shatters before we can find my real body, everything I am, everything I was, everything will disappear. I will no longer exist. Even if I am reborn, I won’t remember a thing. I won’t know you and you won’t know me.”
Nick froze in her arms, his body went completely still as he stared down at her. Some many things flashed through his eyes in that one moment, fear, pain, sorrow. Everything she had felt since hearing the truth flashed through him.
“What happened after that day? How was your soul separated from your real body?” Nathaniel asked, breaking the trance her words had cast. Mia turned back to find Nathaniel watching her a deep frown on his lips, he looked as worried as she knew Nick was.
“I don’t know. I went to see Thea. She had come to visit. My other sisters had returned to their homes after the bonding ceremony. Emily was furious as she had threatened to destroy us but I had ignored her threat because that was just how she was. She had a fierce temper but she never really followed through on them. But Thea had become worried lately, she said she had seen blood in a vision so she had come to visit. She was staying at my private home.”
“I found her and I begged her to end my life. Only she could do it, only she would be strong enough to do it. I told her what happened. She cried for me. She was the only one that knew I was pregnant besides Nick. She knew how much it meant for me to lose them both. I begged her to end my life so I wouldn’t become our father. I was too strong for that to happen. My four sisters wouldn’t be strong enough to stop me if I were to lose it again. Thea knew it was true. She didn’t want to help me. She begged and pleaded with me. But in the end she did as I asked. She knew I was just too strong.”
“By that time, my sisters and I had realized that we weren’t exactly mortal, but neither were were immortal. If someone were to cut off our heads or cut out of hearts, we were pretty sure we would die. But anything short of that we could recover from. We only knew of one other way to die, but piercing our hearts with a blade covered in our father’s blood. I’m not sure how we had come upon that discovery but it was something we knew. Thea was the one who was in possession of the blade. She knew it was the only way. So she did as I asked and she shoved the blade through my heart.”
Mia felt Nick shiver at her tale. It was one thing to know she had died, it was another to know how.
“So you died then?” Nathaniel asked, his dark blond brows furrowed.
“I thought so. Until now, I thought that Thea had taken my life and then brought me back to life by pulling my soul from the Void and placing it in this body,” Mia said with a nod.
“But she didn’t?” Nathaniel said as the furrow deepened.
“That what I don’t know. In the visions I have been having lately, I relive that night that I went to Thea and begged her to kill me. I remember the pain as the blade pierced my chest. I remember hearing my heart stop and then I remember darkness. But then something happens. Instead of remaining dead I wake up naked and covered in blood at the foot of my father’s altar. I thought it was a dream, I thought my visions were mistaken. But after what Iliya Chen told me, I’m afraid that they what I saw was real.”
“What did Iliya Chen tell you?” Nick asked gruffly.
“She told me that I can’t die.That I am immortal. That I will never die.”
Nathaniel stiffened at Mia’s word. She looked at him out of the corner of her eye before directing all her attention on Nick who was gritting his teeth together as his hands tightened around her waist.
“And you believe her,” his words were more statement of fact rather then question, yet she nodded all the same. “Why?”
“Because she is like me. She cannot die either.”
“Who is she? How does she know about you?” Nick demanded to know.
“She says she is my mother.”
“Then she is obviously insane because your mother is dead,” Nick snarled. She knew he would not be happy with the news, but she hadn’t expected it to upset him this much. Mia reached out, laying her palm against his rough cheek, running her fingers against his jaw.
“She’s not lying Nick, she really is my mother.”
“But that’s impossible. That would make her thousands of years old,” Nick growled.
“As I am, or at least my body is,” Mia said.
“If she truly is your mother, then where the hell has she been hiding? Where was she when you and your sisters needed her the most? Why did she leave you alone to deal with your father?”
“Those are the exact questions we will ask her tonight,” Mia said in a soothing tone as she ran her fingers up and down he back of his neck. “That and how we go about finding my real body.”
“This is fucking insane,” Nick snarled.
“It is,” Mia agreed.
“No one deserve this kind of shit,” His shook his head furiously.
“No, no one does, but it’s happening and we’re going to deal with it because we have to,” Nathaniel agreed as he stood up and moved to stand next to his grandson. “We are going to save Mia and for that we need to get everything out of that woman.”
“She’ll give us whatever we need or I’ll spend the rest of my life searching for a way to end her,” Nick swore. With that, he gently set Mia on the stool she previously occupied and stormed out of the room.
Mia knew that following him would do no good. Especially when she heard the front door slamming shut. He needed to cool down.
“He’ll be better when he comes back,” Nathaniel said patting her shoulder. Mia just nodded in response. She knew he was right, but it didn’t stop her from waiting to chase after him. The only thing that kept her in her seat was that fact that seeing her would just make it worse. So instead of chasing after Nick like she very much want to do, she turned to Nathaniel who still looked a little shaken from the revelation.
“I need your help. I need you to find a way to kill an immortal. If there is any chance that we don’t find my body in time, if I lose myself, I need you to find a way to kill me.”
Next: Chapter Six