The Burning Shadow (Origin 2) - Page 46

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Heat pricked at my skin as Luc’s lips kicked up. A humming, burning connection flared to life. The buzzing in my chest spread to my stomach. More intense than before, and I knew that could only mean one thing.


Big trouble.12Growing up, I loved Halloween—Halloween and Christmas. Or at least I thought I did. Who knew if I really did since I had no real memories beyond the last four years, but every Halloween I could remember, I loved dressing up and watching scary movies while gorging on candy.

This year was different. Everything felt off, and it wasn’t just because I was actually at a club instead of at Zoe’s or Heidi’s house, sitting next to Luc and staring at him like—

“You’re staring at me.”

Blinking, I jerked my gaze away from Luc. I had been staring at him. It was kind of hard not to when he was sitting there, his head tilted slightly to the side and a mysterious smile curling the corners of his lips.

“No, I’m not,” I muttered.

“Uh-huh. Looked like you completely dazed out over there. What are you thinking about?” Luc asked.

That was a loaded question, because it felt like I was thinking about everything. Lifting a shoulder, I scanned the crowded dance floor of Foretoken as columns of vibrant purple light streamed from the ceilings, gliding over the churning bodies. I’d lost sight of Heidi and Zoe in the crush of angels and sexy cats, Black Panthers and vampires. What wasn’t I thinking about?

My head was running a million miles a minute and not really conducive to being at a club. I felt like I was better suited for staring morosely out of a coffee shop window.


I looked over at Luc. He sat beside me, one arm thrown along the back of the couch. His other hand rested on his thigh, his long fingers tapping. He was the picture of lazy arrogance, but I knew he could spring into action at any moment. When I didn’t answer, the hand behind me tugged on one of my pigtails.

I pulled my hair away from his fingers. “You’re not just going to read my thoughts?”

“You don’t like it when I do that.”

“Has that stopped you before?” I squinted, thinking I’d caught a glimpse of Zoe’s super-cute Wonder Woman costume, but it wasn’t her. She’d disappeared with a college-age guy, and I had a feeling that tonight would end in shenanigans of the fun and naughty kind.

“More than you realize, Peaches.”

I shot him a look, and he grinned at me. “I’m just thinking about … everything.”

His head inclined. “That sounds like a lot.”

“It is.” And it really was.

He was quiet for a long moment. “A penny for your thoughts?”

I laughed, thinking I hadn’t heard that saying in a while. Truth was, I wasn’t quite sure I could make sense of the mess of thoughts or explain the weird restlessness invading every cell in my body.

I felt like I should be out there, dancing with my friends and having fun, instead of sitting here, too afraid, too in control, too whatever to just let go and be who I used to be.

And I didn’t want to talk about any of this.

Twisting one of my pigtails into a rope, I looked over at him. Those eyes were shadowy in the dim light, but the heaviness of his gaze was still there, intense and consuming.

“Did we ever go trick-or-treating? You know, as kids?” I asked after a moment.

“That was random.” He chuckled. “We did a couple of times.”

“We did?” My gaze tracked its way to his.

He nodded. “I’d never gone before you. Never really had any interest in it.”

My brows lifted. “How could you not want to dress up and go get candy?”

“I wasn’t exactly a normal kid.”

“You’re not exactly a normal guy right now.”

He laughed again, shoulders rising and falling, and I liked the sound a lot. Sometimes too much. “True.”

Shifting toward him, I drew a leg up. “Tell me about it? Like, what did we dress up as, and did you have fun?”

“We had fun.” He dragged his teeth over his lower lip. “Paris would take us to the best subdivision, the ones where they handed out full-sized candy bars.”

“Nice.” I laughed, letting my hair go and then twisting it once more.

His lashes lowered. “He’d make us dump our bags at the end of the night and evenly count them out, but you always ended up with more.”

“Because you gave me the candy?”

“Hell no. I worked hard for that candy. Halfway through the night, you’d somehow trick me into carrying your bag. I had tiny arms back then. That crap was heavy, so I wasn’t giving away any of it.” He reached over, stilling my fingers around my hair. “You’d wait until I went to sleep and would sneak into my room and steal it.”

Tags: Jennifer L. Armentrout Origin Romance