The Burning Shadow (Origin 2) - Page 99

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“What happened with the car and the people that were in it?” Heidi asked.

“Poof,” Kent replied. “Chas and I made sure no one will find the wreckage. He lit it up.”

Zoe smiled, and it was downright creepy. “He used the Source, burned it and everything in it until nothing but ashes remained.”

Dear God.

“And the woman in April’s house?” I asked.

“I’ve heard there was a gas explosion there,” Kent offered, and the grin on his face was just as disturbing as Zoe’s.

“So, no evidence of anything?” Heidi surmised, and as I glanced over at her, I wondered what the trace looked like to those who could see it. “You guys are all in the clear?”

“We’re in the clear, but we do have evidence.” Grayson walked forward, placing several cylindrical objects on the coffee table. The bullets that Luc had removed. I tensed. Grayson wasn’t done with his show-and-tell. He then pulled four guns out of thin air, it seemed, and laid them on the table. “These were taken from the occupants of the car before their untimely cremation.”

I briefly closed my eyes.

Luc stretched forward, picking up one gun. He unloaded the Glock like a pro. “Bullets are the same.” He showed them to me, and he was right. Their tips were full of something that looked like blue light. He glanced at Kent. “Are they what I think they are?”

“A newly weaponized form of an EMP? Yes. They are,” he answered, and my stomach dropped.

EMP stood for electromagnetic pulse, a weapon deadly to Luxen. They had been used over cities during the invasions on a mass scale, frying the electrical grids of those cities and killing the Luxen inside. The ART team used some form of the weapon, but that was more like a Taser.

“Not just Luxen, Peaches. That will take out a hybrid and an Origin.” Luc picked up my thoughts. “But these bullets are different.” He placed the Glock and chamber on the table. “Something new.”

“They weren’t designed to kill but to wound.” Grayson picked one up, his brow knitting as he studied it. “Which is fairly interesting, don’t you think?”

“Yeah.” Luc sat back, tossing his arm behind me once more. “Why would they have a weapon that injures instead of killing?”

“That sounds like a good thing,” Heidi commented, looking at Emery. “Right?”

“Not necessarily. We don’t know what would have happened if Luc hadn’t been able to get them out.” She was staring at the bizarre display on the table. “Regular ART teams aren’t armed with these. They have the good old-fashioned, kill-on-sight EMP weapons and tasers, and they don’t go for the tasers often. They go for a kill shot. This group, however, has something we’d never seen before.”


I folded my arms across my waist, feeling like I’d slipped into an old episode of The X-Files. “What about the white pouch? Any idea what kind of serum is in it?”

Kent shook his head as he sat on the arm of the chair Zoe was sitting in. “No idea. None of us really have a way of figuring that out beyond looking at it, so there’s no way for us to tell if it has anything to do with Sarah or that guy you all went to school with.”

“Most of the serums looked similar.” Luc threaded his fingers through my hair. “When Dawson or Archer come back around, which should be soon, we’ll give it over to them.”

“Why?” I asked, toying with the obsidian pendant.

“They have someone who’d know what it is,” he answered.

So did I.


But I knew better than to suggest that. “So, here are the facts. We still have no idea what April is, but she’s obviously working with the woman who was in her house, who had a case full of some kind of serum that may or may not have caused what happened to Sarah and possibly Coop, and whoever you guys … cremated—people who happened to have specially designed EMP weapons.”

Luc grinned. “Sounds about right.”

“Which brings us to the question of who these people could be,” Emery said.

“It has to be the Daedalus.” A muscle flexed in Luc’s jaw as he looked over at me.

“How?” Zoe’s eyes widened. “You destroyed—”

“I did destroy every location I could find, and I thought that was the end of them, but obviously I was wrong.”

No one in the room cracked a joke about Luc being wrong. That was how serious the mere thought of the Daedalus being active was.

Rising from her chair, Zoe cursed as she stalked toward the window. “They can’t be back. They just can’t.”

Luc drew his arm off the back of the couch. “I don’t think they’re back,” he said. “I’m beginning to think they never went away.”* * *Act normal.

That was what Luc had said last night, before he fell asleep with my cheek resting on his chest, close to one of the healing bullet wounds. He’d come home with me and stayed the night even though there was a good chance Mom would figure out he’d been there.

Tags: Jennifer L. Armentrout Origin Romance