The Darkest Star (Origin 1) - Page 97

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“How do you know that?” I followed him as he moseyed on past my dresser and to my cluttered desk.

“I’m omniscient.” Luc touched—touched everything. The pens and highlighters, the heavy five-subject notebooks stacked on top of one another. He picked up the hot-pink miniature stapler, clicked it once, and then put it back. His long fingers drifted over loose papers.

“Oh, come on.”

“She’s been working really late, hasn’t she?”

“Yeah, it’s not at all creepy that you know that.”

He chuckled as he looked over his shoulder at me. “Maybe your momma isn’t working late. Maybe she’s hooking up with someone.”

“Ew. No way is she—” I stopped myself, not wanting to even think about my mom hooking up with someone.

“She has needs too, you know.” He refocused on my desk, picking up my world history textbook.

I shot him a death glare. “Please stop talking about her like that. It really weirds me out.”

“Yes, ma’am.” He leaned in, squinting at the photos.

My heart sped up for no good reason. I stayed where I was, plastered against the wall, near the window. “How did you even get up here?”

“I ran and then jumped.” He touched a Halloween photo from last year. It was Heidi and Zoe at James’s house. They were dressed as Jokers—green hair and purple suit. I’d gone as Harley—old-school Harley Quinn. Finding the perfect jester suit had not been easy. It also hadn’t been that flattering, which was why all pictures of me from that night had been burned. “I’m skilled like that.”

I rolled my eyes.

He chuckled, and the sound was . . . annoyingly nice. “All these photos and none of you as a kid. None of your mommy and daddy?”

“That’s not strange. We didn’t get a chance to grab the photo albums after the invasion. All that stuff was left behind.”

“Every single picture?” He turned to me. A moment passed. “Where were you when the invasion happened and what were you doing?”

I thought that was kind of a weird question, but I answered it anyway. “I was at home. It was early in the morning and I was asleep. Mom woke me up and told me we had to leave.”

“And?”

“It’s all . . . kind of blur. We left when it was still dark outside.” The details from that day had faded over time, and I thought a lot of it had to do with the fear and panic that had crowded the events. “We moved to a location in Pennsylvania and stayed there until it was safe.”

After a long moment, Luc looked away.

“What about you?” I asked.

“I was in Idaho.”

“Idaho? That’s . . . unexpected.”

“Do you know there’s actually a theory where people believe that Idaho doesn’t exist?”

“For real?”

“For reals. It’s a conspiracy theory. Something like government mind control. Not that the government doesn’t have the power and methods to pull something like that off, but I can one hundred percent confirm that Idaho is a state.”

“All righty then.” Curiosity was getting the best of me even though I should have been demanding that he leave. “Were you alone when it happened?”

He shook his head. “I was with people I knew.”

“Friends?”

A strange, wistful smile appeared. “Depends on the day.”

Oookay.

“You actually met two of them briefly.”

I thought about that for a moment. “Daemon and Archer?”

He nodded. “They got back tonight. I’m sure you’ll be seeing them again.” He glanced over at me. “Is there a reason why you’ve attached yourself to the wall?” he asked, those striking eyes shooting to mine. “I don’t bite.”

A warm flush splashed across my cheeks. “Why are you here, Luc?”

“Because I wanted to see you.” He backed up and then sat on my bed, his gaze never leaving me.

“Make yourself comfortable,” I said dryly.

“Already did.”

My eyes narrowed. “You . . . you shouldn’t be here.”

His lashes lowered. “You’re right. More so than you even know.” Before I could question what the heck that meant, he said, “I wanted to talk to you about what happened today.”

I peeled myself off the wall and inched my way to the bed. “Talk.”

A wry grin appeared as he rubbed a hand along his chest, above his heart. “Connor didn’t find the Origin who attacked you, but he did give the same description that you gave me, and even though it’s impossible, what that Origin said to you reminded me of one I once knew.”

I sat on the bed, keeping a healthy distance between us. “Once knew?”

He nodded as he dropped his hand. “There’s something I feel like I need to tell you.” He bit down on his lower lip. “I probably shouldn’t, but I think you need to know this. It’s not something Grayson or Kent knows. Or Emery, who you’ve figured out by now is a Luxen.”

“Yeah, I’ve figured that out.” I picked up the Coke he brought and popped the tab. “What do you have to tell me?”


Tags: Jennifer L. Armentrout Origin Romance
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