The Burning Shadow (Origin 2) - Page 108

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Two fingers pressed against my chin, tilting it up. “But there are two things we need to take care of first that are more important.”

“What could be more important than this?”

“This.”

The fingers under my chin curled as he brought my mouth to his, stopping just an inch from his lips touching mine. The hand along my chin slid to the nape of my neck. A heartbeat passed, and then he kissed me. There was an undeniable spark that passed between us the moment our lips met. The kiss started out slowly, just a brushing of his lips, but as soon as mine parted, he made this sound that caused a curl low in my stomach. He kissed me harder and then harder still, and I had to think that only Luc had the power to kiss away the fear and uncertainty, the tainted knowledge that there was something drastically wrong about me.

All those problems were still there, but for a little while, they couldn’t touch us. When he lifted his head again, I was a little dazed.

“There’s still one more thing.”

“Mmm.” My lips were still tingling, parts of my body were still throbbing in tune with the beat of my heart.

“My surprise.”

I’d forgotten about that. “Are you sure it’s not a Chia Pet?”

He chuckled as he lifted his hand. A moment later, a box appeared in his hand, coming from somewhere outside the line of my vision. It was wrapped in paper that eerily matched his eyes. He handed it over.

I looked at it and then at him. “What is this?”

“Open it.”

None of the surprises were wrapped before. I slid my finger along the gap and tore the shiny paper aside.

“Oh my God,” I whispered, staring down at a brand-new camera—an expensive-as-hell camera. A Canon T6 Rebel with all the accessories—accessories I’d never had the spare cash to buy or use. “Luc.”

“Your old one was ruined, and I know how much you love to take pictures.”

Tears blurred my vision as I stared down at the camera.

“Plus, you need to retake those pictures of my stunningly handsome face.”

“Luc,” I whispered, clutching the box.

He was silent for a moment. “Are you going to cry? Please don’t cry. I don’t like it when you cry. It makes me want to fry stuff, and I’m already down two lamps today—”

Laughing, I lunged toward him and kissed him. “You didn’t have to do this, but I’m keeping it. Forever.”

He grinned as he scrunched his fingers through his hair. “Glad you like it.”

“I love it.” I ran my hand over the box, and then I laughed. “I turned into a master assassin today and killed April. I may or may not be some kind of Lord knows what, but I … I feel okay. It’s not the camera or the kissing—though both helped,” I added when he raised his brows. “But it was you. Thank you.”

Grinning, he looked away and dropped his hand. “It’s nothing…” His phone went off, and he reached into his pocket to check it. “They’re back … with April’s body.”* * *Part of me didn’t want to know why they’d brought back April’s body, and yet I was morbidly curious as I followed Luc down to the main club floor, where everyone was waiting.

Zoe made a beeline for me, quickly followed by Heidi. They both hugged me, and when Zoe pulled back, she said, “I can’t believe you did it, and I have questions. I’m kind of pissed that I didn’t get to do it.”

“Join the club,” Emery commented as she strode by, heading toward the hall we just came from.

“How did you kill her?” Heidi demanded, practically hopping from one foot to the other. “Okay. That came out kind of wrong, but how did any of this happen? I have so many questions.”

I glanced at Luc. “Well, that’s kind of a long story…”

“Show me your hand,” Grayson said, appearing out of freaking nowhere.

Half afraid that he was going to drop a tarantula in my hand, I did as he asked.

Grayson dropped my obsidian pendant into my palm, clean of blood and chain replaced. Before I could thank him or ask how he replaced the chain that quickly, he was already walking away from me, heading into the kitchen.

My gaze met Luc’s, and there was a secretive little smile on his lips as he inclined his head. I curled my fingers around the pendant. That was nice of Grayson.

I still didn’t like him.

“Where is everyone going?” I asked.

“An autopsy,” Luc answered.

“What?” Heidi and I demanded at once, and then Heidi spun, taking off after Emery.

Luc strolled past me, stopping to place a brief, unexpected kiss on the corner of my lips. He murmured, “Don’t forget. I’m needy.”

My eyes widened, and I felt my cheeks flush as Luc walked off.

Zoe turned to me. “You and I really need to have a long conversation. And I’m not talking about just April.”


Tags: Jennifer L. Armentrout Origin Romance
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