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  • Home > Samantha Young > Warriors of Ankh > Blood Past (Page 33)     
  • Blood Past(Warriors of Ankh #2)(33) by Samantha Young
  • Thinking of Noah brought on a maelstrom of angst she just didn't want to deal with at the moment.

    When Eden had returned to the mansion with a barely conscious Val and Cyrus and a very groggy Noah, Emma had gushed all over her, thanking her for returning them all safely. Alain hadn't said a word to her, just helped put Cyrus and Val to their beds. When she'd stood and explained to him what had happened, he hadn't responded. Instead he'd silently put an arm around Noah and half-carried his son to his room too. Emma had tried to apologise for her husband's behaviour but Eden had waved her off. Alain blamed her for Noah getting taken in the first place. The fact that the reclusive Darius of Mesopotamia had had to be called in to save their asses hadn't gone down well with him either, although he hadn't actually looked all that surprised by what she'd told him.

    Eden on the other hand was still surprised. In fact, she was pretty sure she'd never get over what Darius had done in her parent's mansion. The carnage was the kind of imagery that didn't dissolve from the memory very quickly.

    The last few days she'd kind of avoided Alain, which meant in turn avoiding Noah. She'd hung around Cyrus and Val as they slowly came too. They were stronger and older than Noah, so it hadn't taken them long to get back on their feet. Cyrus refused to discuss Darius so she was stuck with the terrifying mystery that was He. Darius had contacted Cyrus to let them know the mess had been cleaned up.

    Without Noah, Eden was left alone in her grief, and found it more than difficult to pick up the phone to inform the Douglas' of Mhairi's death. Tobe had dropped the phone, refusing to speak to her, and Eden had burst into real tears for the first time in a long time. What made it worse was that Tobe didn't even know the extent of Eden's failure.

    For a moment… just a moment… while Teagan had delivered his ultimatum and they'd seemed so impossibly outnumbered, Eden had considered giving herself and Mhairi over if it meant saving Noah. She couldn't even begin to comprehend that. Tobe would have killed her. Luckily, although no less unsettling, Eden hadn't had to make that decision. For a few days she grappled with what it meant. Being Ankh had become the sole core of her existence. Or so she'd thought. She'd actually been willing to give up the one thing that meant the world to her, to save Noah's life. On the one hand it made her want to run in the opposite direction from him, get as far away from such messy and overwhelming feelings as possible. And yet on the other, she couldn't bear the thought of never seeing him again. Pondering the complications of life and love ( you know the little stuff) was put on hold as Cyrus brought news of everyone back in Edinburgh. Tobe still wasn't speaking to her. She and the Douglas' were trying to work their way through their grief at the moment. Cyrus and Eden had both agreed that explaining to them about how their death meant Eden's reversal of fortune wasn't the best idea, so they kept that to themselves. Eden had argued with Cyrus for keeping the information to himself in the first place. She made him promise not to ever keep something so huge from her again and was relieved by the promise – Cyrus was too honourable to break it.

    As for McLeish and Mary, things were still up in the air on that one. Now that they were back in the States and the whole Teagan mess was over, Cyrus was concentrating on hunting down Cosmina Arcos before she could hunt down Eden. For him, that was the priority. He had decided leaving McLeish to deal with his sister worked two-fold. It was one less thing for The Circle to worry about and it was also a gesture of respect towards McLeish. He already seemed to view the Ankh as overbearing, arrogant, elitist authority figures (and Eden wasn't saying there wasn't some truth in that); Cyrus reckoned letting him mete out his own punishment for his sister allowed him to see the more compromising side of The Circle, and thus lessened the chances of him betraying the Ankh in the future.

    Eden guessed Cyrus was onto something with that but she would never fully trust the Scotsman.

    He knew too much about her for someone who looked at her as if he wanted to kill her.

    “Princeps,” the older Neith stopped before Cyrus with an air of authority. Eden sat up straighter as recognition dawned. Cyrus had introduced him when she'd first moved in. His name was Terrence Vincent and he was Cyrus' Head of Security. “We have news.” When his eyes flickered towards her, Eden's heart picked up a little. At their return to Weston, Cyrus had begun investigating a leak. There had to be a leak. Someone had told Teagan where to find her and the only people who knew where they'd gone, lived and worked under Cyrus' roof.

    Sliding from his stool with cold rigidity, Cyrus glared at Terrence. “Who?” was all he demanded.

    Nodding back at the young man behind him, Terrence replied, “Jack here discovered our rat. We had two men go on vacation at the same time. Roger Pike and Dwight Carey. Jack had already questioned Carey when he discovered him in the Control Room alone when he wasn't supposed to be so I let him investigate Jack while I investigated Pike and everyone else. Tell him what you found, Jack.”

    Jack cleared his throat, stepping forward to speak with Cyrus. Eden was surprised when he began speaking. His eyes flitted back between her and her guardian, actually including her in the conversation, like she mattered. None of the Neith in Weston had done that so far. She studied him as he spoke, surprised by how confident he was for someone so young. He couldn't possibly be any older than twenty one. “I went to Carey's apartment and after tearing the place apart I found an address and meet time. The address was an old Warehouse in South Boston. We found Dwight's body. He bled out from a knife wound to the heart but he'd also had his soul sucked out of him.”

    “Teagan.” Cyrus nodded, his eyes hard.

    His own eyes grim, Jack nodded back. “We assume so, Princeps. Leaving the body so carelessly would suggest-”

    “That it was Teagan,” Eden interrupted, drawing the young Neith's eyes back to her. “My cousin never really cared about consequences. And a knife in the heart… just his style.” The Neith held her eyes for a brief moment, their darkness from across the room filled with unfathomable expression that made Eden squirm a little. Finally he broke his gaze away to turn his attention back to Cyrus. “We've investigated everyone else, Princeps, but it appears Carey worked alone.”

    “Thank you,” Cyrus replied. “You did a good job.” He turned to Terrence. “I need to know if any of my men are unhappy, have personal problems, etc. I don't care how intrusive it is I need to know that our enemies cannot bribe my people using any personal difficulties as leverage. Understood.” Terrance gave a sharp jerk of his head. “Perfectly.”

    As they left, Eden felt something inside her crumble a little. Great. Now all the Neith in Cyrus' compound were going to hate her. As if having a boyfriend whose father hated her living under the same roof with her wasn't bad enough.

    ***

    Word had reached her that Noah was actually out of bed and the waiting around to see him was just making all the craziness she had gone through after the Teagan thing even worse. She needed to see him. She needed reassurance.

    Feeling a little giddy and nervous at the prospect of meeting with him after everything, Eden decided not to take the elevator to the third floor where he and his family had rooms. Instead she took the long way around, her headphones jammed in her ear so she wouldn't have to listen to the eerie silence of the monstrosity of the house. She skipped up the back servant stairs so she wouldn't bump into Alain, singing along with Metric.

    “Can you hear my heart beating like a hammer? Beeeeaatting like a hammeeer – whoa!” she stumbled at the top of the staircase, finding herself face to face with Jack. This close she could see his dark eyes were actually blue and the face he was struggling to keep expressionless was a nice one. A very nice one. He brushed a strand of silky jet hair back from his forehead before crossing his arms over his chest, blocking her way.

    Eden pulled her earphones out. “Hey.”

    He raised an eyebrow. “You know I couldn't hear your heart beating like a hammer over your God awful singing,” his warm, Bostonian voice pulled at her teasingly and Eden relaxed. Perhaps it was Jack's age or attitude towards her (not suspicious, not wary, not acting like she was going to go

    ‘Carrie' on them at a moment's notice) but Eden felt comfortable around him in a way she didn't around Cyrus' other security guys.

    “God awful?” Eden mirrored his body language, crossing her arms over her chest defiantly. “A little harsh, don't you think?”

    “On the ears, yes.”

    “Oh haha. You're a funny guy.”

    Jack smirked at her. “So I've been told. But seriously… you never heard of stealth?” Eden frowned at him. “Why do I need to be stealthy in my own home? Are you guys planning a rebellion? First man to kill the half-breed gets the keys to Cyrus' Cayman S?” She was just teasing but Jack immediately grew tense and serious at her joke.

    “That's not funny, Eden. Even joking about hurting you could get one of us strung up before Cyrus. We're taking your safety very seriously.”

    “I can take care of myself.”

    He ran his dark blue eyes over her in a way that made her flush inwardly. “So I've heard. Still…

    don't say crap like that OK? I kind of want to be Cyrus' Head of Security one day and joking about killing his daughter is not exactly the good impression I want to make.” At her mocking look he suddenly seemed to relax and shrugged. “And it would be the Aston Martin. Why go Porsche when you can go One-77.”

    Eden laughed. “I prefer the Porsche. I'd rather be killed for the Porsche.” Jack grinned at her and stepped aside. “There you go again with the killing jokes. You're going to get me in trouble.”

    She breezed by his tall frame, chuckling up at him as she strode onto the third floor landing. “It's a specialty of mine or didn't you know that already?”

    “What? Getting people into trouble?”

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