Bound to Darkness(Midnight Breed,book 13)(63) by Lara Adrian
Riordan bellowed in outrage. “Get her, you idiot!”
The bullets slowed as the guard ran from one side of the catwalk to the other, trying to get Carys in his sights.
Rune held her close, adjusting their position as the gunman fired off a handful of wasted shots. Damn, he wanted so badly to embrace her, kiss her. He wanted to hold her and never let her go. She needed to know how sorry he was that he failed to keep his father’s evil from touching her. Most of all, she needed to know how deeply he loved her.
But there was no time for any of that now. The gunfire kept coming, and Carys’s survival was his sole focus.
Rune knew the moment she scented his fresh injury. Her face lifted to his, alarm sparking in her transformed eyes. “Oh, shit. Rune, you’ve been shot?”
“I’ll live. Don’t worry about me.”
And he intended for her to live too, which meant he had to find a way to get her out of there.
But now, across the pit from them, Rune saw the vampire shaking off his daze. The big male got up from his sprawl where Carys had flung him. His feral eyes looked past the other dead in the pit, seeking out his prey.
Rune stepped in front of Carys, shielding her. The snarling Breed male prowled forward, fearless of the gunfire, his fangs dripping pink-tinted saliva from the powerful narcotic Riordan had fed him.
He couldn’t let the beast get close to her. On a snarl, Rune charged forward. He plowed into the center of the big vampire, driving him down onto the floor of the pit. They rolled and thrashed, Rune trying to avoid the snapping jaws and razor-sharp fangs.
“Over here!” Riordan’s shout to his guard alerted Rune that Carys was on the move again. “Don’t let her get away this time!”
As Rune struggled and fought with his out-of-control assailant, he caught a flash of movement in his peripheral vision.
A blur of shadows as Carys crossed the open floor of the pit at full Breed speed, then dashed back under the catwalk before his father’s gunman could lock on to her.
Rune and his opponent came up from the floor, both pounding each other. One of Rune’s blows connected under the vampire’s chin. The male staggered back a couple of paces.
Then all at once, he convulsed violently as a sudden, lethal barrage of bullets tore into his broad chest.
Rune swung his head in the direction the shots had come from.
There stood Carys beneath the catwalk, holding Ennis Riordan’s smoking pistol in her hands.
Carys didn’t let go of her breath until Rune was standing with her under the meager cover of the catwalk.
Once he was there, she sagged against his warmth and strength, her arms hanging limply at her sides. Emotion overwhelmed her. Most of all, she felt a profound relief to feel his arms wrapped around her and his voice murmuring tender words against her ear.
He lifted her chin on the tips of his battered, bloodstained fingers.
“Carys,” he whispered, his deep voice urgent and raw. Emotion stormed in his blazing eyes. “You’re the last person I ever wanted to see here, in this place. I wanted to handle this for myself . . . for us.”
“I know.” She gazed up at him, seeing the torment in every line and hard angle of his face. “I know that’s why you left with them. I never doubted you. Not for a second.”
A strangled moan leaked out of him. Then he kissed her, deeply and fiercely, as if they weren’t standing in the midst of death and carnage, with the threat of still more perched on the platform over their heads.
But the threat was real.
And Riordan wasn’t finished with them yet.
“Fuck the sentimental reunion,” he snarled from above them. “Release the last fighter.”
The heavy gate on one of the pit’s perimeter access portals lifted, freeing yet another feral Breed male.
“Oh, hell, no,” Carys muttered. She broke out of Rune’s loose hold. “Not this time.”
She aimed her pistol at the snarling vampire as it loped into the arena. She squeezed the trigger several times and . . . nothing happened. Just a hollow click-click-click.
No bullets left.
“Stay back,” Rune said as she tossed the empty weapon down. He swept her behind him and prepared to face this new opponent. “I need you to stay safe, Carys. Promise me.”
No, she couldn’t give him that vow. Everything Breed in her wanted to fight this battle with him. Everything female in her was determined to stand by her man—to her last breath, if it came down to that.
Up on the catwalk, Riordan chuckled sadistically. “As soon as either of them comes out from under here, shoot them dead,” he told his guard. “Both of them!”
Carys growled at the command. As scared as she was, her rage was stronger. She knew Rune would meet this new threat the same way he’d confronted all of the ones that had come before, but damn it, enough was enough.
Shots rang out the instant Rune and the other Breed male clashed with the start of their combat. In the tumble and roll with his opponent, Rune somehow managed to evade the sudden spurt of gunfire. But Carys knew it was only a matter of moments before his father’s guard hit his mark.
She wasn’t about to let them get that chance.
Carys’s body was in motion even before she had decided what she would do. She slipped her shoes off and inched backward on her bare feet, out from underneath the catwalk.
With Riordan and his shooter preoccupied with trying to hit Rune off the front of the spectator platform, neither of them realized she had leapt up from the pit until she was already on top of them.
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