With her future in shambles, she leans on Issac Wakefield for his love and support. They crave just one more moment together, one more night, until a massacre destroys everything in their path.
Will their relationship perish in the embers of destruction, or will love persevere?
Kingdoms will fall. New powers will emerge. And a Seraphim will rise from the ashes of despair.
An immortal war is on the horizon. Death will reign. The endgame begins now.
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“Well, that was certainly eventful.”
Stas Davenport arched a brow at the handsome man beside her. The sarcasm in his tone wasn’t lost on her. “Be nice.”
“Is that a command, love?” He cocked his head to the side, an alluring smile playing over his lips. Stas loved this side of Issac Wakefield. The playful one that only came out when they were alone.
She slid into the passenger seat of their rental and buckled her seat belt while he watched. Those blue eyes seemed to trace every inch of her. “You realize I’m wearing four layers, right?”
He laid a forearm on the top of their SUV and leaned in to press his lips to hers. “I’m looking forward to taking them off piece by piece later. Something I would have done already had you allowed us to travel my way.”
“You’re never going to let this go, are you?” Her adoptive parents had sent them plane tickets for the holidays, a gift Stas knew cost them a minor fortune. Hence the reason she’d begged him to just fly commercial. “We compromised by upgrading to first class.”
“Business class,” he corrected.
“And there’s a difference?”
“Oh, Aya.” He just shook his head and closed the door.
Spending the holidays with Issac in Montana would be interesting. Of course, he’d insisted on renting a house in Kalispell after her adoptive parents mentioned staying in a hotel. Fortunately, they’d been thrilled with the change in plans and were meeting them at Flathead Lake. Seeing as they lived in Havre, it was easier and cheaper for them to drive.
Issac buckled in beside her and started fumbling with the fancy controls. Stas had no idea how he managed to rent this brand of SUV in Montana, but it sat waiting for them as they exited the Glacier Park International Airport. At least it had seat warmers, an amenity they would need.
Issac muttered a curse just as the back doors popped open on either side. “Go home,” he demanded as two familiar men made themselves comfortable on the plush leather seats.
“Yes, I believe we are headed to your new residence,” Luc said by way of greeting, causing Stas to frown.
“New residence?” She flashed Issac a look. “I thought you were renting?”
“Peanut?” Luc held out a bag toward the front passenger seat.
Issac ignored the Hydraian King and smiled. “I said I acquired a residence for the holidays.”
“You said you rented one.”
“I definitely used the term acquired. You just inferred it to mean I rented it.” His lips twitched. “It also happened to be a worthwhile investment opportunity given the rising costs.”
“How did you even find one to buy?” Kalispell was one of those areas where the homes were traditionally handed down through generations or purchased by mega celebrities.
“Money speaks, darling,” he replied.
Right. Billionaire boyfriend.
Sometimes she forgot that detail with everything else going on in their lives.
“I guess they don’t want a peanut. B?” Luc held the bag out to his sidekick beside him, reminding her that they had unexpected company.
“What are you two even doing here?” Stas stared back and forth between the muscular blond and too-attractive brunet. If she brought them to meet her parents… Oh God. Her father would be going to the nearest gun store to pick up a new item for his extensive collection and offering to play target practice with their heads.
“Celebrating the holidays,” Balthazar replied with a grin. “Amelia and Tom are already at the lake preparing the holiday home with the others, but Jacque dropped us off at the airport to ride with you.”
Issac pulled out his phone to begin dialing while Stas gaped at the intruders.
“Define ‘others.’ ”
“Germanic in origin, it refers to those remaining in a group or not already mentioned,” Luc replied. “Or it can be used to refer to a person or thing that is different or distinct from another. Assuming you meant the pronoun, of course.”
She blinked. “What?”
“This is unacceptable,” Issac said to whomever he’d called. “Well, tell them all to leave.” He pinched the bridge of his nose while Balthazar smirked from the backseat. “Amelia…” The female voice rose over the phone, suggesting Issac’s sister didn’t approve of his request, and the grins in the backseat grew.
“You’re both trouble,” Stas whispered.
Luc popped a peanut into his mouth and shrugged. “I’ve always been a fan of the pagans and their traditions.”
“What does that even mean?”
“Christmas, sweetheart,” Balthazar explained. “Sometimes we forget how human you are.”
“Used to be,” Luc added without apology.
Stas grimaced, not wanting to think about her current fate. This holiday was meant to be an escape. A way for her and Issac to truly determine their future together, but it seemed the immortals in the backseat had other ideas.
Most humans would envy her bloodline because it meant she would live forever. Unfortunately, it also meant she couldn’t be with the Ichorian beside her. All because of some ancient laws and genetic bullshit that pitted the two supernatural beings against each other.
“It’s a lot more than that,” Balthazar murmured quietly.
Stas shot him a look. The mind reader heard everything. Always. He meant well, but sometimes she just wanted to keep her thoughts to herself.
“Yes, all right,” Issac said softly. “Well, they believe he’s dead, remember?” His head fell back on a sigh. “Yes, Amelia. I will.”
A masculine voice came over the line.
“That should work. I’ll talk to Aya. Put Amelia back on, Thomas.” The last statement was said through gritted teeth, which unclenched when his sister started talking again. “Yes. Sounds lovely.” He looked ready to punch something. “See you soon.” He hung up the phone and glowered at the rearview mirror. “I will kill you both for this.”
Luc finished off his peanuts. “A unique take on the whole ghosts-of-Christmas legend, Wakefield.”
“Can we call him Scrooge?” Balthazar asked.
“Brilliant.” Balthazar smiled. “Shall we go, then? I have a date in the snow with a to-be-determined guest of honor.” He waggled his eyebrows at Stas.
“No,” she and Issac replied at the same time.
“You’re turning down playtime in the snow?” He gave Luc an affronted look. “Who doesn’t enjoy snowball fights?”
“Apparently these two Scrooges.” He gestured to the pair of them in the front seat.
Issac blew out a breath and glanced sideways at Stas. “I suggest you call your mom and warn her that a bunch of adult toddlers are joining us.”
If her parents weren’t already on their way to Kalispell, Stas would have told them to stay home, and have Issac drive her to Havre instead. “How is this going to work? Where will everyone sleep?”
Balthazar’s grin was absolutely wicked. “We’ll just share your bed, Stas.”
“The residence has enough room.” He glared in the mirror again. “Lucian, the Christmas ghost you mentioned will become a reality if your second-in-command continues that train of visual thought.”
The seductive Hydraian blew him a kiss while Luc produced another bag of airline peanuts from his pocket. Had Jacque snagged those for him midflight or something? “B, stop taunting Wakefield.”
“Whatever you say, King Luc,” Balthazar deadpanned.
Luc snorted and popped more of those damn peanuts into his mouth.
“Let’s just go, Issac,” Stas said, tired from traveling all day. A nap sounded great right about now. Or copious amounts of alcohol. “It’s only thirty minutes.”
“Right.” Issac navigated away from the curb, giving up on the notion of expelling the two interlopers from the back. “You need to warn your parents and also inform them that Thomas is indeed alive since they believe him to be dead.”
She gaped at him. “And explain that how?”
“By saying he was on a deep-cover assignment that required the ultimate camouflage.”
Her brows rose. “You expect them to believe that?”
“Thomas will help when he sees them. His gift for insinuating truth is begrudgingly useful.”
“Right. Okay.” She had no idea if her parents would buy it, but what choice did she have? “You two better be quiet back there.” She needed as much focus as she could get.
Balthazar saluted her. “Yes, ma’am.”
Luc just held up yet another bag of peanuts.
Well, at least it’ll be a memorable holiday.
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