When Darkness Ends(Guardians of Eternity,book 12)(57) by Alexandra Ivy
She grimaced. “Fine. They’re not musty, but I’m tired of research.”
The desire that was a constant, exhilarating buzz in the pit of his stomach abruptly spiked as he gazed down at her beautiful face.
Bloody hell. His erection was already aching to be buried deep inside her addictive heat.
“Good,” he growled, stroking his lips over her forehead. “Because I have a better way of passing the night.”
She shivered, her lips parting in an unconscious invitation. “Cyn.”
“But first . . .” Taking her hand, Cyn led her back into the library, heading straight to his desk. Pulling open the top drawer, he pulled out the delicately carved box he’d hidden there before he’d taken Fallon on their picnic. Then, with a small smile, he placed it in Fallon’s hand. “Here.”
She glanced at him in confusion. “What is this?”
He brushed the back of his hand down the satin softness of her cheek. “My musty books didn’t have much information on the elusive Chatri, but they did reveal that the fey royalty have an unquenchable thirst for pretty baubles.”
She blinked in surprise. “When did you research the Chatri?”
“As soon as we arrived here,” he ruefully admitted.
Slowly she took the lid off the box, giving a soft gasp at the sight of the diamond and ruby necklace that had been designed in the shape of a hummingbird.
“Oh.” She lightly traced the delicate gems that shimmered with a living fire in the moonlight.
Smug satisfaction raced through him. The handful of references he’d found on the Chatri had spoken of their love for treasure, but it was his own instinct about his mate that warned him she wasn’t the sort of woman who would be impressed by size or monetary worth.
She was unique. So only the most rare, the most exquisitely crafted treasure, would impress her.
“Well?” he prompted when she continued to stare at his unexpected gift.
“You”—she paused to clear her throat—“are a very dangerous man.”
Magnus was left alone in the dead imp’s cell while the vampires transferred the various prisoners and did a thorough sweep of the house. Crouching beside the body, he monitored how quickly the body disintegrated.
He wasn’t a healer, but he’d trained as a warrior, despite his royal blood. He’d been taught how to determine the death of a fey.
Hours later he was still maintaining his vigil as the imp became nothing more than a faint sparkle of sand on the lead-lined floor. He was rising to his feet when he sensed Tonya entering the dungeon along with the King of Vampires.
His hands clenched. This was absurd. Tonya was a mere imp. And worse, she didn’t have the slightest knowledge of how a true female should behave.
She was rude. Outspoken. And she had zero respect for his position as prince.
So why did he keep kissing her? It was as if his body disconnected from his brain, was urging him to touch her with a compulsion he couldn’t seem to resist.
And why did he feel more vibrant—more intensely alive—whenever she was near?
The answers shouldn’t matter to him. Just like he shouldn’t be curious as to why the imp had come to Styx’s lair and was now dead.
He should have already returned to his homeland. It would take time for the formal dissolution of his engagement and then the tedious negotiations to choose someone else to become his fiancée.
His House was depending on him to elevate their stature among the Chatri.
Slowly rising, he smoothed his expression to one of aloof boredom as Tonya stepped into the cell swiftly followed by Styx.
“How did he die?” the Anasso curtly demanded, displaying his usual appalling lack of manners.
Not that he particularly wanted to indulge in idle chitchat with a leech.
“Magic,” he revealed.
Styx scowled at the unwelcome revelation. “Impossible.”
Magnus folded his arms over his chest, deliberately holding the vampire’s gaze. It wasn’t really a challenge. It was the only way he could keep himself from staring at the sinfully sexy woman who was hovering near the door of the cell.
“Then you explain what happened,” he said.
Styx stabbed a finger toward the complex engravings on the cell wall. As if Magnus could have missed them.
“The hexes in the dungeons prevent any magic, even if it could pass through the layers of protection that are wrapped around the estate.”
“That would be no barrier if the spell had already been cast.”
A blast of icy air slammed into Magnus. The King of Vampires wasn’t pleased at the knowledge his barriers weren’t as impenetrable as he believed.
“Explain,” he snapped.
Magnus glanced back down at the sand that had lost its sparkle. He knew of only one way to kill an imp who was surrounded by defensive hexes.
“Long ago witches kept private assassins.”
“Are you saying the imp was an assassin?”
“Not necessarily.” He returned his attention to Styx. “My point is that the witches would place a death spell on their servants. If they were captured then they could detonate the spell before the assassin could reveal the name of their master.”
The vampire peeled back his lips, revealing his massive fangs. “So the killer could be anywhere.”
“No,” Magnus said in decisive tones. He’d never encountered a witch powerful enough to perform the spell, but he knew enough about magic to know that it must have its limitations. “They would have to be close enough to speak the word of power.”
Copyright © 2015 by Read Best Books Free Online