The wanting, though? It was consuming and pounding, undeniable and new. My fingers stretched out over his chest. I could feel the heat from his body through the thin shirt. I’d never experienced anything like this before.
And it was a little terrifying.
I pushed against the chest. “Luc, I . . .” I didn’t want to say. I didn’t know what I was feeling.
He shifted onto his side. “It’s okay. It’s—Wait a second.” Luc sat up swiftly, his gaze flickering over me like he was looking for something. Then his eyes widened.
“What?” I sat up, relieved that the movement didn’t make me dizzy. I looked down at my arm again, making sure it hadn’t healed all wonky, in case that was why he was looking at me strangely.
Touching it lightly, I winced at the dull spike of pain. My arm was broken and . . . and now it wasn’t. That was the proof in the pudding right there. Mind. Blown. Overwhelmed, I lowered my arm to my lap. “I feel like I need to thank you again.”
“Don’t.” A muscle flexed in his jaw. “I’m the last person you should be thanking.”
He turned his head to me, his expression unfathomable. “Something is wrong here.”
My mind raced back to what we’d almost done. We had been heartbeats away from kissing. Was that what he was talking about? There was a knock on the door.
Luc turned. “Come in.”
The door opened to reveal Emery and then Heidi, peeking around Emery’s shoulder. “We just wanted to check on her,” Heidi said.
Emery had the same look on her face as Luc did. Like she was looking for something around me that wasn’t there.
I was starting to get a little worried.
“You don’t see it either, do you?” Luc asked her.
Emery shook her head as Heidi stepped farther into the room. “See what?” Heidi asked.
“I don’t know.” I looked at Luc. “What are you guys looking for? And why are you staring at me like I have a second head?”
“I know why,” Emery interjected.
Heidi looked at her. “Care to fill me in, babe?” she asked.
Emery glanced at Luc.
“Why are you looking at him instead of telling me?”
Luc rose from the bed. “I have to go.”
“What?” My voice cracked. “Can’t whatever you need to do wait?”
“No.” Luc laughed, and it was nothing like the laugh I’d heard before. It was cold and sent chills over my skin. “This cannot wait.”22
“Where do you think Luc went?” I asked. “Did he go looking for the guy?”
Heidi and I were sitting on Luc’s couch. Ten minutes had passed since Luc had bolted out of the room like the building was on fire. Emery had followed him, but she said she was coming back.
“I don’t think so,” Heidi answered. “When you were out of it in the car, it sounded like Connor was trying to track that guy down.”
I’d forgotten that he’d been there. That was another person I needed to thank. I glanced down at my arm, still unable to get over the fact there were only bruises. Healing broken bones in moments? Unbelievable, but it’d happened. Awe-inspiring and overwhelming. It was amazing.
Part of me could understand why that would capture the attention of doctors and researchers. What would normally take a surgery and a cast to fix, Luc had done in minutes.
“As soon as Emery gets back, we’ll get you to your car.” Heidi pulled her legs up and wrapped her arms around them.
I lowered my arm to my lap.
“Is it hurting?”
I shook my head. “Just a little, but nothing like before. It feels like I just banged it into a wall instead of it being broken.”
Emery returned then, walking into the room. She sat beside Heidi. “Sorry about that. I just wanted to let Grayson know what was going on.”
“It’s all right.” Heidi smiled at her.
She was seriously a Luxen. How had a pair of contacts tricked me? I gave my head another shake. “So, I have questions.”
Emery smiled weakly. “I figured as much.”
My mind was going blank as I tried to process everything that had happened. “Why were you and Luc looking at me strangely?”
“This is where things get complicated.”
I looked over my shoulder and saw Kent. He was wearing a shirt I imagined Luc would wear. On it was a picture of a T. rex trying to hug another T. rex, but with their short arms, that wasn’t happening.
“Really?” I murmured, wondering if Luc would be thrilled that everyone was in his apartment. “Things are just now getting complicated?”
Kent strolled into the room, carrying a can of Coke. “So, you know about the Daedalus and everything, right?”
I nodded and then glanced at Heidi. Apparently that wasn’t news to her, either.
“Your government knows damn well the Luxen can heal humans, and they also know not every Luxen is equally skilled at doing it. Some are better at it than others, and those really interest them. Those were the ones your government stole.” He sat on the arm of the couch, closest to me. He handed me the Coke. I took it. “I didn’t misspeak about the whole ‘your’ government thing. I claim no ownership of that hot mess express, but that’s not the biggest risk when it comes to healing humans.”