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  • Home > Samantha Young > Warriors of Ankh > Blood Past (Page 24)     
  • Blood Past(Warriors of Ankh #2)(24) by Samantha Young
  • Teagan checked his cell again and growled. He'd hired a human private investigator to follow Eden, and he'd kept out of sight of the other Blessed so that when they were caught (and the stupid sons-of-bitches would be caught) they couldn't go blabbing about Teagan's presence in the city.

    Being cooped up wasn't good for the hunger though. Swigging back a glass of twenty five year old malt, his eyes narrowed on the photographs laid out before him. The dodgy P.I. had come and gone in the last hour. Teagan had thought about eating his soul momentarily but then he remembered he still needed the guy, so he'd ordered two hookers instead. In a city this small he'd have to be careful. A missing person would be noticed and could lead back to his appointment with them. So he'd ordered two ‘ladies' and each would act as a starter that would combine as a main. If people noticed them acting weird and it got back to the Councilman, they'd just assume it was the Blessed they were already after. He clenched his fists, his eyes roaming over the pictures of Eden with that Ankh tool, Noah Valois. He hated that kid. Teagan felt himself trembling with a building impatience and rage.

    He wanted Eden now. He wanted her away from that little jerk and that self-righteous Princeps.

    Slumping down over the photos, his fingers brushed over her face. This one was a close up and Teagan could make out the blue-green colour of her eyes.

    He missed the grey.

    At the knocking on the apartment door, Teagan shook himself. He better get himself under control if these women were to leave his apartment alive. So OK, he thought, striding towards the door, Eden is hanging around the Ankh and smiling at him like the sun rose and fell on his ass, but this is how I get her; this is how I get her back. His P.I. told him Eden was constantly surrounded by three people in particular. Noah Valois, Cameron Wright and October Douglas. Now, Teagan couldn't just barge in on her life and expect to take her alive. No. He needed Eden to want to come to him. He needed leverage.

    The only way to get Eden was to use the people closest to her. And to get her back as she once was meant one of her people was going to have to die. It would be up to Eden if they were the only one.

    “Ladies,” Teagan drawled, stepping back aside to let the prostitutes into the apartment. He'd have preferred to call an escort service but that would only make it easier to track back to him. No, he'd found Sasha's number (he didn't know if that was the brunette or the blonde) in the men's toilets at a nightclub and asked her to bring a friend.

    “So, how dae ye want tae dae this?” the blonde asked, her eyes hard and her skin somewhat rough.

    She looked older than she was, the lines of her face etched with the grim realities of her career. She had a nice rack though.

    Teagan grinned and watched their body language change as they realised how attractive he was.

    “How about some wine, some music?” He liked to lull them into a false sense of security before he struck.

    The small brunette was a little on the heavier side than her friend but she had a prettier face. She smiled warmly at him. “Have you got any Ray Charles?”

    “Ah love ‘A Fool for You',” the blonde added, nodding.

    Teagan's smile grew even wider in feigned pleasure. “Ladies, you have soul. I like that.” They both beamed with pleasure at the compliment, completely clueless that he was about to take as much of that soul from them as he could get away with.

    Chapter Nineteen

    The Kiss of Death

    Ricki was a thirty-something Neith with incredible power. He attacked Eden and she caught his wrist with both hands and twisted it like Noah had taught her. She forced the Neith to the ground and snapped his arm back to the point of breaking. Ricki slapped the mat and she let him up. He grinned and they stood to face each other again for another round.

    Over the last few days Cyrus and the others had found the den of soul eaters and managed to kill a few of them. Two, however, had gotten away. McLeish had assumed they'd flee the city so he had alerted the rest of the Neith in the United Kingdom to the two soul eaters presence. But they weren't so lucky. These soul eaters were cocky and apparently had decided to stick around. An armed robbery down in Leith had caught McLeish's attention when he'd heard the family members of the accused discussing how changed he was, that their friend and family member had seemed to snap overnight. A little more investigation and McLeish was certain the soul eaters had stuck around.

    Patrols had begun again and Cyrus had decided to stay until the problem was dealt with.

    That meant Eden got to do more training and she was loving every minute of it. Noah no longer needed to shout encouragements from the sidelines and was matching her up with stronger and stronger opponents. Ricki was the strongest Neith so far. All it needed was her focus to slip and-

    “Sss,” Eden hissed, whipping her head back, but it was too late. Pain had exploded up her left cheek as Ricki's fist connected with her cheekbone.

    “You OK?” he asked, stepping back.

    She blinked, wiping a tear out of her eye. “I'm fine.”

    “Eden.” Noah moved to step onto the mat but she waved him away. The pain was already dissipating and since she healed even faster as Ankh than she had as a soul eater, it wasn't anything to get worked up about.

    “I'm fine,” she reassured him. “My fault, I wasn't paying attention.” He looked unconvinced so Eden adamantly turned and nodded at Ricki. “Let's go again.” The Neith nodded. “Focus,” he ordered briskly.

    She felt better ten minutes later with him sprawled on his back, his neck caught in her strong hands in a neck crank. In real life, one twist in the right direction and Ricki would be a goner.

    He patted the mat and she let him up.

    A while later as the Neith began filtering out of the training room for the day, Eden bent over to gather up her personal belongings, only to straighten up to be faced with a Noah wall.

    “Whoa.” She staggered back a little, inhaling his yummy Noah scent.

    Her eyes widened as he reached down to stroke the cheek Ricki had punched. “You OK?” Not with you brushing your fingers over my skin like that, no, I'm a little far from OK.  Eden cleared her throat, “I'm fine.” She tilted her head away from his touch. “Healing already.”

    “She is tough, Noah, no need to worry,” Cyrus' voice reached out to them and they whirled around as he strolled towards them out of the shadows. Eden hadn't even known he was in the training room.

    “Princeps.” Noah acknowledged him.

    Her guardian nodded back at them, his expression inscrutable until his eyes found hers and softened into something warm. “I have been watching today. You are ready.” Eden's heart started to race at the abrupt pronouncement, her eyes widening in disbelief. “Really?

    You're letting me hunt?”

    The look of pride and fear on his face made Eden feel safe and cared about; it was a feeling she was just starting to get used to. “Yes.”

    Suddenly she felt a little sick. Of course, she was also excited. This was what she had been training intensely for over the last few weeks. But… she was also kind of… a lot… nervous.

    Glancing up at Noah, Eden couldn't keep the panic out of her eyes.

    He gave her a brisk nod. “You'll do fine.”

    ***

    She was all jittery, her body jumping up and down inside itself as she followed Noah past the Omni Centre they'd had their little ‘double date' in. After dinner, Cyrus had announced that Eden was going on patrol with them which sent October into a meltdown. Christopher wouldn't budge. He wasn't letting Tobe out on patrol until she turned eighteen and that was final. Eden had felt a little bad leaving Tobe at home to sulk but she was also pretty much desperate to make the most of her first night as a true Ankh warrior. Cyrus and Val were hunting too, along with McLeish and a few other Neith. They'd decided to split up and Cyrus, a ‘throw ‘em into the deep end' kind of guy had decided Noah would take Eden to Leith, where one of the victims had lived. Val hadn't looked too happy about that. In fact, neither had Cyrus, but Eden could see he was struggling to act as he would normally, rather than smother her with overprotectiveness.

    Senses on high alert, Eden's eyes swept the buildings, people, alleyways. They were walking down a pretty busy area of Edinburgh at night so it wasn't exactly the easiest assignment.

    “Anything?” she asked, suddenly feeling the need to fill the silence between her and Noah.

    He shook his head as he kept scanning everything and everywhere without looking like he was.

    Eden remembered how much she used to marvel at how good he was at this spy stuff. The surreptitious looks, the ability to get away from Ryan's well-paid goons. Made sense now. She took a moment to study Noah in his natural habitat. He was so serious, so prepared and commanding. He was Mr Duty. Somehow, she'd always felt that about him, even before she knew who he really was.

    He carried this invisible weight of responsibility on his shoulders and he'd always had this intense sense of right and wrong. It had been one of the things she'd like about him so much, had made him stand out from the immature teen guys at school. But then… Noah wasn't exactly the average teenager. Her eyes unwillingly roamed over his powerful shoulders wrapped up so nicely in a black thermal top. She felt a weird clenching in her lower belly as her gaze slid down his arms to his large strong hands, to the silver ring on his middle finger. She gulped, feeling a little warm as her eyes continued to roam. He certainly had a nice ass. She blinked as her eyes travelled lower and caught on the low side pocket of his black cargo pants. Inside it were two Persian short swords. Long daggers?

    Whatever, point was they were on duty. Eden snapped her eyes back to attention, mentally berating herself for getting distracted so easily on the first hunt. Maybe she shouldn't patrol with Noah next time.

    Slowly but surely life started to edge away from them the further they walked and the streets seemed to grow a little darker.

    “Any-”

    “Ssh.” Noah pressed a finger to his lips and held out an arm to stop her. In the distance they could hear the hubbub of traffic and some late night revellers laughing and yelling. Here, Eden could only hear her own heartbeat pounding at Noah's alertness as he watched the opening of an alleyway between two restaurants. What was-She froze as she heard the scuffling Noah must have heard. Throwing him a questioning look, Eden wasn't surprised when he nodded back and began unbuttoning the pocket of his cargo pants.

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