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  • Home > Chloe Neill > Chicagoland Vampires Series > Blade Bound (Chapter 70)      Page
  • Blade Bound(Chicagoland Vampires #13)(70) by Chloe Neill
  • “Or to flaunt it?” I asked.

    My tone hadn’t been friendly, and neither were her eyes.

    “I chose to sacrifice my connection, however undeserving the recipient of my gift. The deal was done. The power should not have come back to me.”

    Her eyes, so vividly blue, darkened, like seas beneath a roiling storm. And there was fear in her eyes. Even Claudia, who was as egotistical and dangerous as they came, was worried.

    “Why is it happening?” Ethan asked.

    Her brows lifted. “I am not here to answer your questions, bloodletter.”

    Ethan’s expression remained implacable. “And yet, you’re here. In my territory, without permission, to seek an audience with me.”

    Claudia growled, anger flashing in her eyes. “You did not stop her when you had the chance.”

    No question as to the “her” she intended.

    “To the contrary. We stopped Sorcha; the humans allowed her to escape. You believe she’s the reason your power has returned?”

    For the first time since I’d known her, there was uncertainty in Claudia’s expression. “There is power in this land. Power the shadowed girl worked to contain.”

    “The shadowed girl?” Ethan asked.

    But I understood. “She means Mallory,” I said. She’d been shadowed by dark magic. “Mallory reversed Sorcha’s magic. There shouldn’t have been anything left of Sorcha’s spell.”

    And that had been bothering me—how could there have been magic left over to create the delusions if the battle at Towerline had eradicated it?

    With impeccable timing, and before Claudia could answer, Mallory and Catcher strode through the gate and down the sidewalk.

    They stopped when they reached us, and Mallory’s eyes grew wide as she took in the spectacle that was Claudia.

    Emotions evolved on her face—confusion, curiosity, and, as she probably felt the depth of Claudia’s magic, something that looked like lust. Like need. Something that probably wasn’t good for a woman with an addiction to dark magic.

    “Mallory,” I said, making her name a quick snap. It accomplished what I needed it to do, and seemed to pull her out of her momentary magical stupor.

    “Hello,” Catcher said, nodding at Ethan, at Claudia. “We don’t want to interrupt.”

    But he plainly was here to interrupt, to jump in, in case the fairies were a threat. And with Mallory, to contain them.

    “You aren’t,” Ethan said. “Claudia, this is Catcher and Mallory Bell. Claudia is queen of the fairy.”

    “The shadowed girl,” Claudia said quietly. Her gaze had skipped over Catcher, evidently unimpressed. But she looked at Mallory carefully, and for the first time since I’d known her, there was something akin to respect in her eyes. Something that looked like recognition, like she’d finally found someone worthy of her interest, rather than the same old stringy vampires.

    “You wrought old magic,” Claudia said. “That magic shadowed you.”

    “I’ve worked to lift that shadow,” Mallory said, straightening her shoulders.

    “And turned away from limitless power,” Claudia said, clearly unimpressed. “You turned instead to words and chants, herbs and whispers.”

    “Didn’t you turn away from power, too?”

    “You would judge me?”

    “If you’re going to judge first, yeah. Maybe we can skip the rest of the intimidation game and get to the point?”

    Claudia’s eyes fired—she wasn’t used to smart-mouthed sorceresses—but she let the comment go. Maybe she was intimidated by Mallory, which was fine by me. I wasn’t comfortable without a check on Claudia’s power. We didn’t need another Sorcha.

    “I felt your magic, your unraveling of hers. It wasn’t enough.”

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire