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  • Home > Samantha Young > The Tale of Lunarmorte > River Cast (Page 39)     
  • River Cast(The Tale of Lunarmorte #2)(39) by Samantha Young
  • “You mean the pack. Lucien?”

    “Yes.”

    “He stepped aside so easily, Caia, when I brought Rose in. What loyalty do you really owe him?”

    More than I owe you.

    With her young heart in her eyes, she looked up at Marita as if a student to her tutor. “I would like to stay here.”

    A wide grin split her normally dispassionate face. “Wonderful. I’ll take ca-”

    “But I have to go back to say goodbye to everyone. To explain. I would... like to see Jaeden, as well, before I return to the Center.”

    For a moment Marita’s eyes washed over her, searching, suspicious. It took everything Caia had to maintain the sincere facade of a young, confused girl looking for guidance. Inside she was furious at this woman for putting her in this position; this woman who was supposed to be the protector of the Daylight Coven. How Marion’s great-grandmother would be howling from the underworld at the way Marita had taken to running things. She was an autocrat alright... she was just better at hiding it than most. Finally, the magik seemed satisfied that Caia was telling the truth. She nodded and stood up. “Very well. You should leave today then. But I expect you back in two days’ time.”

    Caia forced a bright smile and a sigh of relief. “Yes, yes of course.”

    Restraining the urge to run from the room, Caia sedately left Marita’s suite, surprised to find Marion waiting inside the mahogany elevator for her.

    “Well?” She smiled kindly.

    Oh how she wished she could confide in Marion, tell her the truth. She abhorred lying to the woman who had been more than just a mentor, but a solid friend.

    “I’m staying,” she managed weakly. “I’m going back to the pack with Lucien to say goodbye, and then I’ll be back here in two days.”

    Marion’s reaction wasn’t the one she’d been expecting.

    “Are you sure that’s what you want?”

    “What do you mean? I thought you’d be happy.”

    The witch threw her a sad, knowing look. “It would make me happy if I thought that was what you really wanted.”

    Caia frowned at her. “It is.”

    They rode down the elevator, got off at floor five, and rode that elevator up to Caia’s suite in complete silence. Marion stopped her before she could make her way to her room.

    “I still believe that you can help us win this war even if you are living with the pack. My sister doesn’t. That doesn’t mean you have to feel pressured into staying. It would be against the law to keep you here unwillingly.”

    In that moment she wanted to throw her arms around this woman and cry, beg, plead with her to help her do what she had to do. But no matter how kind Marion was to her, she would never betray her sister. Caia smiled determinedly at her and lied, “I appreciate that Marion, but there’s really nothing keeping me with the pack.”

    “Not even Lucien?”

    An ache rippled across her chest and her smile tightened. “Lucien has Rose.”

    “And if he didn’t?”

    “He does.” She sighed and turned to leave. “I’m going to get ready. Maybe you could tell Lucien that we’re leaving now. Rose is coming with us.”

    Instead of heading towards her suite, however, Caia strode past it and got into the elevator at the other end of the hall. Her heart was racing, hoping that she would remain undetected as she made her way to visit the Travellers.

    Luck must have been on her side. She found herself on the other side of the Center with very little trouble, and was immediately swarmed by the twins and a few others. The rest of the Travellers watched shyly from the background.

    “Oh my goddess, Caia, Ophelia travelled to the top of the Pyramid of Khafre in Giza this morning!” Desi tugged excitedly on her sleeve. “We all told her not to because it’s, like, insanely dangerous... I mean she could have missed the top by a millimeter and gone crashing down the pyramid. But she didn’t!” She laughed, shooting a look of pure pride at Ophelia, who blushed happily, “She totally pulled it off!”

    Caia chuckled. “Well done, Ophelia. That must have been some view.”

    She shrugged modestly. “There was a lot of sand.”

    Desi snorted. “I would so be bragging if I were you now. I can’t believe Vilhelm missed it. Did you hear, Caia? That he broke that girl out of prison, that Midnight?”

    “I did.”

    Desi and a few others shook their heads in amazement. “We knew he was like awesome at travelling but we didn’t know he had the balls to pull that off.”

    Ophelia sniffed. “Well, all I have to say is that he really must believe the girl is innocent. Vilhelm would never betray the Coven.”

    Oh that’s right, Caia mused, Ophelia had a crush on Vil.

    Desi grimaced. “Or uh the girl put a spell on him.”

    “Impossible.” One of the other male Travellers shook his head scowling at her. “The girl was contained by magik. Vil did it of his own free will.”

    “So weird, he was always so quiet.”

    “It’s always the quiet ones.”

    “Why did he do it though?”

    “Well, I don’t care why he did it,” Ophelia said loudly, cutting off the chatter. “I’m just not going to treat him as a villain for it.”

    “Ophelia.” Desi sighed. “She’s a Midnight.”

    Her sister shrugged. “She came here for refuge.”

    “Midnights are the enemy, remember.” One older woman sneered.

    Caia watched them argue among themselves, her confidence growing by the minute. It seemed the younger generation in particular were more open to the belief that maybe all Midnights weren’t to be condemned solely on heritage alone.

    “I can’t believe you would even suggest a Midnight could be innocent.” The same woman spat at Ophelia and the others crowded around her. Desi looked torn and she turned to Caia as if for reassurance. Immediately, as her green eyes swept over Caia, her face brightened and she whirled back to the others. “Why not?” she demanded of the opposition. “Caia’s part Midnight and she’s awesome.”

    Silence immediately descended over the room as they all turned to stare at her.

    Great.

    The older Traveller stepped forward, and still scowling at Desi, said quietly and authoritatively, “That’s different. Miss Ribeiro isn’t a full-blooded Midnight and has proven her loyalty to the Daylights thrice over. In fact, she of all people would be able to tell you that all Midnights are evil.”

    Her heart thudded in her chest. She hadn’t come here to make a declaration on that subject quite yet. She had only visited them because she wanted to tell them that they could come see her anytime if they needed anything at all. The Travellers were an important group to her... and eventually she would need them.

    As Caia gazed back at all their waiting faces, she was loath to lie to them. If she did, they would only see it as hypocrisy later and her hopes of getting their support would be dashed. Sighing heavily, she shrugged, throwing them a weary smile. “There are very few people in this world who are truly evil. That the Midnights are our enemy at the moment is all you need to know.”

    Before the surprised muttering could erupt into loud chatter, Caia moved towards them carefully. “I actually came to tell you that I’ll be returning to the pack for a few days.” More lies, she winced. “But that I’ll be back.” No need to tell them when. “And while I’m gone I want you to know that you can come visit me, any time, if you need me. I’m here.”

    There was some gushing from Desi and her sister, and a few others, but mostly just grateful smiles thrown in with a little bit of hero worship. Normally it would make Caia want to sink into the floor to avoid such flattery. Her plans had changed all that.

    As diplomatically as she could, she made her excuses and returned to her suite with a triumphant smile. Things were going very nicely. Just one last thing to do. With her gaze fixed on the offending vase, Caia practically stormed at it, upended its contents on the floor and sifted through them with her toe.

    There you are.

    The tiny black chip lay before her merely seconds before she crushed it underfoot. Goodbye bug, goodbye Center.... goodbye Marita.

    21 - Finally

    He watched the rain, wishing that they weren’t stuck in this bubble at the Center so he could hear it battering against his windows. The sounds, smells, and sight of rain had always reminded him of the pack, of the damp earth that told him he was home. Sighing, Lucien turned away only to glare at the wall that connected to Caia’s suite. Something was going on, he knew it. That she wouldn’t confide in him enraged him past all rationality. Her attitude towards him before and after the attack at Remnant Forest had been inexcusable considering he was the wronged party. He wanted to throttle her.

    The day he had cornered her in the library he’d gone snooping when she had left the room, hoping to discover a clue as to what she had really been researching.

    Taekwondo my ass.

    To his ever continuing irritation he’d found nothing.

    Then there had been her venture into Paris without him, without even telling him it was going to happen. Ah yeah, Marita had been particularly smug about that when he had gone looking for her only to discover she was destroying Pierre Du Bois’ lab with Phoebe MacLachlan and she hadn’t even had the decency to tell him, her pack Alpha.

    Lucien growled just thinking about it. Marita was winning this stupid war with him over Caia’s loyalty and the sooner he could get her out and away from that woman the better.

    He snapped to attention at the soft knock on his door and admonished himself for hoping it wasn’t Rose. Although he hadn’t entered into a relationship with her, she had been trying to persuade him otherwise, pulling him into surprise kisses and talking about a future together. When she had asked him if she could return to the pack with him, Lucien had felt awful letting her down when she was recovering from the beating she had taken by that Midnight. She had been angry at his refusal, but he felt it would have been worse to commit to her when all his thoughts were ever centered on was Caia. Not that the little she-witch cared, he grumbled, feeling her rejection like little pin pricks of pain all over.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire