Hunger Awakened(112)

By: Dee Carney

“No, that discord isn’t news, but they try to keep it hidden beneath shows of power. They are hiding something.”

Sebastian leaned forward, his voice lowering. “What have you heard?”

Corin shook his head. “Not so much heard, just a feeling. I also know that you and I aren’t the only ones who are thinking this way.”

“You’re right, because that’s the second thing I’m learning from the texts. The latest one says ‘war is coming.’ I’m not sure what to make of it.”

“War, by itself, for men trained like us...doesn’t mean much. For you, the man...that’s different. You straddle the breed lines.”

“I need to know war between whom before that becomes a concern.”

He would not indulge in the rift between vampires and werewolves, if possible. But a full-blown war between the two groups didn’t seem likely. Their animosity was centuries old, with only skirmishes to show for it. To Bast, true war meant the possible annihilation of a species.

Always, the words of Locke, the werewolf, returned to him. There were more creatures out there than he’d dreamed of. If war was expected to break out, who among the groups would rise up?

And who would rule?

Bast’s attention focused at the approach of Alice. The expression on her face bordered between timid and bewildered. “What’s wrong?” He could almost scent her fear.

Corin shot to his feet, and Bast followed suit. The executioner used a long stride to cross the room, almost managing to rush past Alice. She held out an arm, temporarily blocking him from going far. “She said if you acted like an idiot, I was to get Sebastian to wrestle you to the ground.”

Bast’s brow shot up. “Wh-what?” he choked out, barely suppressing his surprise.

Alice’s cheeks pushed up in a smile. “Her water just broke. I do believe you’re about to become a father.” She pressed her hand against Corin’s chest when he started forward again. “She means it, and I’m not about to mess with a pregnant vampire’s request. To the ground if you go, as she calls it, ‘all He-Man’ on her.”

The room tightened, with tension rolling off Corin in waves. His gaze slanted dangerously toward Alice, and Bast had the incredible, horrific feeling that things were about to get physical. Friend or no, if he took one wrong step...

Corin shuddered, as if physically shaking off his agitation, and said in a gentle voice, “I’d like to go to my wife and meet our child now.”

If his tone was meant to reassure her, it did. Alice smiled even larger, then dropped her arm to the side. She went to Bast, holding him tight, and together they watched the large man go to his wife.

“Will that be us one day?” Alice asked.

Bast didn’t know for certain if they’d ever have children, but he did know if Alice asked it of him, he’d be reluctant to say no. The idea of producing another generation of vampire-dragons didn’t appeal to him. Not yet, not while things remained uncertain. Another year or two with his mate at his side, though? “It’s quite possible, princess.”

They waited for the other couple to approach. Corin had his hand behind Jasmine’s back as he helped her walk toward the front door of their home. His expression mixed excitement with concern, while Jasmine couldn’t have been smiling more broadly. “Showtime!” she declared.

“I’m so excited for you!”

Bast scanned Alice’s face, one glance proving she would indeed want to have a baby some day.

He immediately changed his previous way of thinking. He loved her with his entire being and if she asked for a baby tomorrow, he would never turn her down. It pleased him through his toes to know she loved him that much. That she wouldn’t let his mixed heritage be a hindrance for their family’s ultimate happiness.

He pushed his face into her hair, snuggling against her. Needing her touch. Wanting her badly. She rubbed her hand over his chest, soothing the rising emotion.

“Call us when you’re up for visitors,” he said to Corin’s back, plans for getting his mate alone for an hour or two taking precedence. “Oh, but you know what you’re having? I don’t remember you ever telling me. A boy or a girl.”

Corin looked back over Jasmine’s head. His smile was mischievous. “Oh, we know.”

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