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  • Home > Samantha Young > Warriors of Ankh > Blood Will Tell (Page 24)     
  • Blood Will Tell(Warriors of Ankh #1)(24) by Samantha Young
  • She slammed the door shut behind her and locked Noah’s mother inside.

    One down.

    Stealth after that wasn’t really her top priority. She just wanted out of there. Eden raced up the basement stairs and out into a narrow hallway, the front door visible at the other end. She moved along it quietly, bouncing on the balls of her feet.


    Eden whirled around to face a warrior she hadn’t met before. She kicked out at him with her right leg and he wrapped his hands around her foot, twisting her towards him. Her body responded fluidly, her torso pushing up so her left leg flew at his head, her foot cracking against his skull. Her body turned through the air and she landed on the ground with the grace of a cat. She’d dazed the warrior but not enough. She never saw his fist move but she felt the impact of it connecting with her gut, the breath whooshing out of her as if she’d fallen from a three story building onto her back. The hunger roared at Eden to take him but she shook it off. She didn’t have time. She doubled over, as if she were in agony, and felt the warrior step closer. Her right hand flew up without even looking at him and her knuckles stung as they connected with his jaw. He stumbled and Eden straightened and delivered an uppercut with her left fist. The warrior’s grunt was followed by his knee slamming into her gut as he regained his balance.

    She barely felt the impact of the blow this time, realizing this man wasn’t nearly as powerful as Emma.

    He was Neith.

    For some reason that knowledge gave her confidence and strength.

    She threw him a feral grin and lunged at him, using his own knee as a platform to spring up on, to deliver a deafening crack to his face with her left knee cap.

    Eden jumped off of him just as he collapsed on the ground with a thud.

    Barely out of breath, she turned and ran down the corridor. She was almost there. Almost there.

    And then he appeared.

    Sliding to a stop, Eden’s whole being flinched at the sight of Noah guarding the door. Her hunger screamed.

    “Eden.” He held up his hands just as his mother had. “Stop.”

    “I locked your mother in the basement,” she told him coldly, her fingers sliding down and brushing the handle of the dagger. Noah’s eyes flared at the sight of his mother’s weapon on her and she saw the brief flicker of panic in them. She snorted. “Don’t worry, she’s fine. I compelled her to let me go.”

    Noah’s jaw dropped, an expression unfamiliar with his face. “You what?”

    She shifted uneasily. “I compelled her.”

    He shook his head. “Not possible.”

    She shrugged, ignoring the disquiet that settled around her at the awed and slightly wary look he was now giving her. “What can I tell you.”

    Immediately, Noah’s gaze drifted down so their eyes weren’t locked. Smart boy. Eden growled, “Let me go, Noah.”

    Instead of acquiescing he walked slowly towards her. Eden refused to back up. “I can’t, Eden. Please just take a minute and think. You know we’re not trying to hurt you.”

    A bitter scoff huffed out of her. “Oh yeah, I really got that when you murdered Stellan.”

    “Romany is being punished for that. Everyone had direct orders not to hurt Stellan, Eden. It was never supposed to happen.”

    “I don’t believe you.”


    “STOP SAYING MY NAME!” she screamed. It was a mistake. She heard the sounds of footsteps from upstairs and from the back of the house. She panicked.

    One minute the dagger was in the pouch, the next it was in Noah’s stomach. He bowed a little as the weapon plunged into his belly, his eyes flaring in shock as they collided with Eden’s. The violet in them darkened to purple with disbelief.

    Eden felt his warm blood trickle onto her hand and she gazed into his eyes with horror. What had she done? Oh my God, what did I do? She choked on a sob as she tugged the blade back out, the dagger slipping from her hands to the floor. It seemed to last forever that moment with Noah in the hallway. Two friends turned betrayers.

    It was only seconds.

    “I’m a monster, Noah,” she whispered.

    Seeing his shock dissipating and his strength return, Eden knew she couldn’t hang around any longer.

    He was just reaching for her with bloody fingers when she blew right past him and out of the door.

    Chapter Twenty

    Running From You… or Me?

    Eden was faster than even she had realized. She successfully escaped the rented house, running around the neighborhood in circles for a while to throw off the warriors who had taken off after her. She wasn’t familiar with the town but she saw a sign that said Denton and knew it was just a town over from Salton. Surmising that the warriors would head over to the bus depot first to check on her, Eden decided to use the energy she had left and follow the highway back to Salton. She wasn’t going home. They would be watching. Anyway she didn’t think she could bear to look at the place where Stellan’s life had been taken.

    Running through the woods was therapeutic in a way. Each pound of her foot and tremor through her leg somehow stomped the guilt, the grief and her hunger into the background. Her muscles were burning, like a screw that had been turned too tight, but she relished it. She even relished the swelling agony of Emma’s too small boots.

    By the time Eden made it back to Salton and into town, she was sweating more than she had ever sweated in her life. She also looked insane in the pyjama bottoms and t-shirt. Ignoring the bewildered stares from passers-by, Eden headed to Charlotte’s, a thrift store Celine had refused to let her go into. It was bad enough Eden was obsessed with black, but at least it was designer black. It killed Celine if Eden bought something that cost less than a hundred bucks. She hated it when Eden wore t-shirts she got online for cheap.

    Eden winced.

    What an ode to her mother and father’s parenting skills that she felt nothing at their loss.

    Then again, according to Cyrus, Celine wasn’t her mother, and her father had raped her real mother just so he…

    Eden squeezed her eyes shut. Actually, Cyrus hadn’t gotten around to the reason why Ryan had deliberately raped an Ankh. To be honest, she no longer cared. She flexed the hand that had wounded Noah. She was desensitized to horror.

    Limbs shaking, Eden strolled into Charlotte’s and began raking through the racks. Quickly she picked out a t-shirt, sweater, jeans, socks, sneakers and a raincoat. The t-shirt and jeans were kind of cool but everything else was a little blah. Not like it mattered. She hurried over to the counter where Charlotte, a thirty-something single mother sat in a stool reading Stephen King’s Misery.

    “That’s my favorite,” Eden told her quietly, pointing at the book as Charlotte glanced up.

    Charlotte smiled, putting it down. “Gosh, I didn’t hear anyone come in I was so engrossed.”

    “The movie’s good too.”

    “Yeah?” Charlotte’s smile grew. “I’ll have to check that out. Well, what have we here?” She began ringing the clothes through and suddenly clocked what Eden was wearing. “Honey, you OK?” she asked quietly, her eyebrows coming together in concern at the sight of Eden in her pajamas.

    “I’m fine,” Eden tried not to snap. “How much?”

    “Hmm. OK, that’s thirty eight dollars.”

    “Wow.” Eden smirked and handed over forty dollars. Talk about a bargain.

    Charlotte’s fingers brushed hers as she took the money, the warmth shooting like an arrowhead of fire into Eden’s chest and setting the hunger ablaze. A growl erupted out of Eden as she snatched mindlessly for Charlotte’s wrist.

    “Hey!” The shop owner shouted in fright, trying to tug out of her grasp. “What’s your problem?!”

    The struggle only taunted the hunger and Eden laughed, a throaty sick laugh that didn’t seem to belong to her. As her left hand wrapped around Charlotte’s throat and pulled her towards Eden, her torso collapsed over the counter and her face a breath from Eden’s, Eden felt as if she were watching it play out from a great distance. As if she wasn’t really a part of the attack.

    Charlotte choked, her face turning a reddish-purple color, and Eden fought with the hunger to relax its grip on her throat.

    “Please,” Charlotte croaked.

    Stop it! Eden screamed at herself, struggling with this need that had grown so powerful and out of control.

    You’ll feel better. You’ll be stronger. You won’t feel so crazy anymore.

    Her eyes focused on Charlotte’s mouth. Maybe just a taste. I wouldn’t have to kill her.

    Yeah. That would be OK.

    Eden leaned forward, her lips grazing Charlotte’s as this pull ripped apart inside of her, this vortex of power, reaching up through her like fingers of sticky black tar; anything caught in its mass would be pulled back down inside of her.

    This was it.

    This was it.

    The door to the shop chimed and she heard laughter. It took more strength than Eden knew she had to let go of the thing inside of her and shove it back down from whence it came. She shook uncontrollably as she relaxed her hold on Charlotte.

    “Nothing happened. I brought clothes over. Paid for them. I told you to keep the change.”

    “Nothing happened. You brought clothes over. Paid for them. You told me to keep the change.”

    Eden let go just as a voice called behind. “Hey Charlotte, you OK?”

    She turned to face the worried young guy and girl who stood staring at Eden suspiciously. They were dressed in ragged t-shirts and jeans, their hair long and scruffy. Very clichéd thrift store shoppers.

    “Of course,” Charlotte replied brightly. “How are you guys?”

    “Good,” the guy replied, still eyeing Eden warily.

    Eden gave him a blank look that seemed to shake him to his core. She turned to Charlotte and grabbed the paper bag of clothes she’d just bought. “Thanks.”

    “Oh, you’re welcome, honey.”

    In store, all Eden felt was fury that she had been interrupted, that she hadn’t been able to finish what would end this feeling inside of her. She was feeling like a frickin’ schizophrenic and was sick of it. But as soon as she hit the bus depot and was inside the ladies bathroom changing into her clothes, reality came crashing back in. She sagged against the tiled wall and closed her eyes, breathing in and out to control the wave of nausea that hit her. She’d done it again. She had nearly killed someone. She imagined someone finding Charlotte’s dead body, the Stephen King novel she had been reading discarded, never to be finished by her. All the small things in life that made it what it was and Eden had nearly taken that from someone. Horrified, she struggled to breathe. This time it had been close.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire