The Shadows(Black Dagger Brotherhood, book 13)(60) by J.R.Ward
This time, as his lids lowered, it was from pure exhaustion, not from any kind of hope that he would dematerialize.
Except just before he was due to be captured, as he lifted his gun muzzle and knew that he was about to lose his life in a very bad gunfight …
The image of Layla came to him so clearly that it was as if she stood before him.
If he did not remove himself, he would die and ne’er set eyes upon her again.
As a profound sense of loss struck him in the center of the chest, it was then that he knew what he had been denying for some time.
Faced with the reality that he might be denied one last audience with that female, one final chance to hear her voice, catch her scent upon the night air, stand in witness to her physical presence … the bonded male in him screamed in rage at such a crime.
Just as a German shepherd rounded the corner of the metal container, its deputy on a short leash following suit, at the very instant when the human shouted something along the lines of, “Freeze,” or some such drivel …
Xcor up and disappeared.
Only the drive to see his female again gave him the strength to cast himself upon the night air, scattering his battered, weakened body up to the roof that Balthazar had directed him to.
As the cop down below let out an exclamation of shock and another arrived to much ensuing conversation, Xcor fell out of thin air, landing hard on the gravel-topped flat roof of the building overhead.
“Thank you to the Scribe Virgin,” he heard someone mutter.
Groaning, Xcor rolled over onto his back. Zypher was standing over him. Balthazar, too.
“He is injured quite badly.”
That was the last thing he heard before blood loss and injury dragged him down into unconsciousness.
One block over, Rhage had his own list of problems thanks to all the damn humans who’d flooded the alleys. With his hands over his head, and his back to the approaching boys in blue, he was annoyed. And bored.
The real party, with those slayers, had gone ahead along with Bill Murray’s—make that Manny Manello’s—bulletproof medevac thing. Meanwhile, he was stuck here with a six-pack of Caldie’s finest.
Just like in the movies, he thought while rolling his eyes. “Whatever you say, Officer.”
His keen hearing meant he triangulated their positions with total accuracy. And there was nothing ahead of him in the alley. No cars, late-night pedestrians, or other cops.
God only knew where Manny was going to end up. Or what was happening with Trez and Selena.
He didn’t have time for this.
“No offense, but I gotta blow.”
Just like that, because the CPD didn’t stress him in the slightest, he was up and out, dematerializing away.
He was smiling in his molecular state as he traveled off, imagining the OMFGs.
But he’d kinda done a no-no. There was one and only one rule in the war with the Lessening Society: Thou shalt not tee up the idiot gallery. I.e., it was in everyone’s best interests that humans didn’t know that vampires were so much more than a Halloween myth, and the Walking Dead was actually not just a TV show.
Sometimes you didn’t have a choice, however. And though he’d just given Frick and Frack, the handcuff brothers, and their other buddies, a helluva show, it was better than wasting time erasing their memories when Manny really needed him and Trez and Selena might possibly be needing him.
Blowing his way forward, he re-formed three blocks closer to the river on the roof of a delivery entrance’s carport. Just as Manny sped down the alley in his armored tank, with his wedding train of CPD units behind him, Rhage flashed down into the light of those Xenon beams—and gave the good doctor a wave to keep going.
Then he calmly and very deliberately stepped into the ambulance’s wake and opened fire on the markeds that were trailing the vehicle. He wasn’t an asshole, though. His Mary had been human once—sort of still was except for her whole immortal thing. So he aimed at the front tires and the engine blocks on a first-come, first-served basis. The unit in the lead quickly lost control and went into a tailspin, which meant the second was harder to hit safely. But he rocked that shit, rendering them useless.
He caught up with Manny again by ghosting two more blocks down, and he materialized into the passenger seat in the same way he’d left the vehicle.
Manny gave a shout of alarm, but didn’t lose his focus. He kept them moving and in the middle of the alley.
“We gotta get out of here,” the good doctor said.
“Head to the river. I know exactly what to do.”
“There are cops everywhere.”
“I’ll tell you when to turn.” Rhage got out his phone and started texting. A block later, he barked, “Now! Right!”
Rhage hung on tight as Manny threw them into a ninety-degree and hit the gas again.
“They’ve got a helicopter on us,” Manny announced.
Sure enough, the wide-screen was showing a lovely picture of a brilliant field of light pulling a heat lamp on them, the broad beam flashing around as the copter held them in view from the air.
“Two blocks up, take a left.”
“They’re going to close in on us from—”
Annnnnd just like that they were under the highway, that spotlight extinguished.
“One more block,” Rhage muttered, jacking forward, praying that—“There!”
Over on the right, a service bay was opening slowly, the panels rising to reveal a blackened garage space the size of a small house.
“Holy shit, how’d you do that?”
“All hail to the V.”
Just like that, Manny’s RV, along with all its gauze and syringes and scalpels, and the two sorry sons a bitches in its front seat, was undercover and locked in tight as a tick in the delivery bay.
Manny canned the engine, but didn’t take his grip off the wheel. Like he kinda expected to have to drive again. “What do we do now?”
Rhage put his window down further and listened to the sounds of the cop cars going by on the outside. “We chill—”
His cell rang and he answered it. “Nice work, my brother.”
Vishous’s voice was clear as a bell. “And you thought we’d never need it.”
“Thank God for remote activation.”
“Through my phone. Boom! You safe?”
“Yeah, but I think we’re going to be here for a while unless someone comes and gets us.”
“What the fuck is going on down there?”
“Pick us up and I’ll tell you on the way home.”
“Be there in twenty. Unless we have to worry about the CPD?”
“Oh, no.” Rhage pulled a pshaw with his hand. “You’ll be fine. No cops around.”
As he hung up, Manny looked over at him. “Are you out of your mind? This zip code is crawling with the police.”
“He needs the exercise.”
With a curse, Manny banged his head against the back of his seat a couple of times. “Damn it! I haven’t even gotten a chance to use this bad boy yet, and it’s all trashed.”
“Well, least you got to play with some of the buttons. And this was a good beta test of the whole bulletproof thing.” Rhage’s phone went off as a text came through. “Oh, good news—Trez and Selena made it home safely. Guess they got out of town before the fun started.”
“That is a relief.” Manny took a deep breath, but then cursed. “How’re we going to get this thing out of here? Every police station in town’s going to have a description of it.”
Rhage looked around the interior and shrugged. “Piece by piece, if we have to.”
“Somehow that doesn’t inspire confidence.”
“You haven’t seen your brother-in-law with a screwdriver. That motherfucker can take apart just about anything.”
“How’s he on the reassemble, though.”
“Are you lying to me just so I don’t cry like a little girl?”
“Oh, no. Not at all.”
Rhage twisted around in his seat and activated the flashlight app on his phone.
“Checking for hitchhikers?” Manny drawled.
“You got anything I can nosh on in here?”
“Not unless you like the taste of sterilization.”
Rhage resettled in his seat and put the thing on recline. “Worse comes to worst—”
“No, you may not eat my RV.”
“Are you off-limits, too?”
Closing his eyes, he flipped off the doctor. “Party pooper.”
In the palace’s library, iAm slid out the last volume on the last shelf on the last row of healing texts. As he cracked the leather cover, the scream in his head was so loud, he couldn’t focus to read the table of contents.
“Here,” maichen said. “Allow me.”
Even though it marked him as a pussy, he let himself fall back on his ass, the hard floor biting through the thin cover of the pale blue maid’s uni.
Copyright © 2015 by Read Best Books Free Online