“I will just have to catch you before you tip over that ledge. It’s the only way.”
His arm curled under my head, as if he wished to pull it away, and I knew why that bothered him. Catching me before he couldn’t get to me meant he would literally seize control of my mind. Luc hadn’t minced words. It would hurt badly, and that would be the last thing Luc would ever want to do.
I rolled toward him, plastering myself to the side of his body as I threw one arm over his bare chest and a leg over his.
“Um…?” Luc trailed off.
“It’s okay. I give you permission.”
Luc locked up against me. I don’t think he even breathed.
“If I start to tip over, you have my permission to give me a mental bitch slap. It’ll hurt, but it won’t be your fault. You can’t feel guilt over it.”
“I don’t think that’s really an option, Peaches.”
“It has to be done, Luc, or we’re screwed. No one else can do what you can do.” I kept my voice level, because I knew he wasn’t being domineering or overprotective. If the shoes were on my feet, I would be drowning in guilt. So, I got it, but it didn’t change the fact that it was our only option. “Are you okay with us being screwed?”
“I’m okay with us being the ones doing the screwing.”
Rolling my eyes, I started to sit up, but Luc curled his arm around my back, keeping me against him. “No. You’re right,” he said. “It won’t be easy. I won’t like it, and neither will you, but it’s better than the alternatives.”
There could be no other alternatives.
A disquieting idea suddenly occurred to me. “What if the reason why it’s happening like this is because I’m not meant to control it?”
Luc went very still. “What are you thinking?”
“We know I was mutated four years ago and then trained. My memories were removed only then, when I was placed back with my mom like some sort of sleeper. There were no signs of my mutation until April used the Cassio Wave, and since then there hasn’t been any other sign, other than when I’m threatened or freaking out. Maybe that is just a defense mechanism and not something the Daedalus or Dasher planned.”
“I’m not really following.”
I wasn’t sure I was myself, because the memories I had of Dasher were too brief, disjointed, and seemed out of context, but then there was what Eaton said. “The Trojans were designed to answer only to Dasher. Maybe I can only either intentionally use the Source or control it under his control, and that’s why it feels like an entity instead of a part of me the same way the Source is a part of you or a hybrid. It’s only a part of me when the Daedalus allow it.”
God, the moment those words left my mouth, I wanted to take them back, because they sounded crazy enough to be totally on point.
“I refuse to accept that,” he bit out.
“It also doesn’t make sense, Evie. There is only so much tinkering around with DNA anyone is capable of, and I don’t care how much coding is in a serum, you’re not a computer only capable of running one program,” he argued. “It also wouldn’t explain how your emotions could control it. Physical harm? Yes. That makes sense, because it would be a way for them to ensure you’re able to protect their asset. But emotions? That’s not an immediate physical threat.”
Luc had a point there.
“It just can’t be possible,” he stated as if he could simply make that the case because he didn’t want it to be.
Neither did I, because if it was and I was on the right path, no amount of training would make a difference if Jason Dasher held the ultimate ace up his sleeve.
I was nothing more than a walking liability or a possible bomb ticking down in the heart of what I suspected was the only place capable of forming any sort of resistance against the Daedalus.
Just like a true Trojan.6“So, that was my night,” I said to Zoe as I finished chewing a handful of peanuts I’d shoved in my mouth—the fourth handful of peanuts. I was so freaking hungry it wasn’t even funny.
Luc was currently having that “much-needed” conversation with Daemon. Zoe had shown up minutes afterward, almost like she’d been summoned for Evie babysitting duty, wearing jeans and a shirt that fit so well I knew the items weren’t borrowed but from a stash of her own clothing that had been held here.
Sometimes it was still a shock to realize how much of Zoe’s life I’d had no clue about.
When I first found out that Zoe was an Origin and that our friendship in the beginning had been engineered, it had been hard, because there’d been a part of me that had feared that our friendship was as fabricated as my life as Evie was, but I’d gotten past that. How Zoe and I became friends didn’t matter. What did was the fact that we had each other’s backs.