Every Last Breath (The Dark Elements 3) - Page 3

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“Liar,” hissed Roth, shooting him a dark look. “You’ve seen that before. So have I.”

“I haven’t,” mumbled Stacey, who, by this point, had tucked her legs against her chest and really looked like she would be rocking at any given point. Until recently, Stacey hadn’t known what Roth really was. She hadn’t even known about me. This had to be too much for her.

“Okay. How and why have you seen this before?” I demanded, dragging in air too fast. “Am I going to have to shave my wings now?”

“Shortie...” Roth’s lips twitched.

I raised my hand, pointing my finger at him. “Don’t you dare laugh, you jerk-face! This is not funny. My wings are freaks of nature!”

He lifted his hands. “I’m not going to laugh, but I think you should leave the razors alone. Besides, lots of things have feathers in their wings.”

“Like what?” I demanded. Were there still more supernatural creatures I was unfamiliar with?

“Like...like hawks,” he answered.

My brows furrowed. “Hawks? Hawks?”

“And eagles?”

“I’m not a bird, Roth!” Patience leaked out of me. “Why do I have feathers on my wings?” I shrieked, this time at Zayne. “You’ve seen this before? Where? Someone tell me—”

Underneath me, the floor began to tremble, cutting me off. The shudder increased, traveling up the walls, shaking the mirror and rattling the framed pictures. Plumes of plaster puffed from the ceiling. The house quaked and a loud rumble became deafening.

Stacey popped up from the couch, grabbing Zayne’s arm. “What’s happening?”

Wings forgotten, I exchanged a look with Zayne. Something about this was all too familiar. I’d felt this before, when—

Blinding golden light streamed in through the windows and the tiny cracks in the wall and from between the wooden boards of the floor. Soft, luminous light crept along the ceiling, dripping downward. I jumped to the side, narrowly avoiding getting hit with the splatter. I clearly remembered what had happened the last time I’d been stupid enough to touch the light.

My kind never could. Neither could Roth.

“Shit,” he muttered.

My heart stopped as the rumble was cut off and the beautiful glow disappeared. In a flash, Roth was beside me, one hand curled around my upper arm.

Stacey sniffed the air. “Why does it smell like we’re being suffocated in dryer sheets?”

She was right; a new scent permeated the air. To me, it was musky and sweet. Heaven...heaven smelled like whatever you wanted it to, whatever you truly desired most in the world, and it was different for everyone.

Zayne shoved Stacey behind him, and I had a feeling Roth was about to drag our nonangelic butts out of there, but a fissure of power radiated throughout the room. The sweet aroma that filled me with yearning was replaced by clover and frankincense. Warmth traveled down my back, and I knew we were too late to make an escape.

Oh no.

Stacey gasped. “Oh my...” Her eyes rolled back in her head and her knees gave out. She folded like an accordion. Zayne caught her before she smacked into the floor, and I didn’t really have time to worry about her.

We weren’t alone.

I didn’t want to turn around, but I couldn’t help it. I had to, because I wanted to see them. I had to see them before they wiped me off the face of the planet. Roth must’ve felt the same, because he also turned. There was a soft glow reflecting off his cheeks. He squinted and I looked toward the doorway.

Two of them stood there like sentries, nearly seven feet tall or possibly even bigger. They were so beautiful it was almost painful to look upon. Hair the color of wheat and their skin shimmered, catching and absorbing the light all around them. They were neither black nor white nor any shade in between, but somehow all colors at once, and they wore some kind of linen pants. The orbs of their eyes were pure white—no irises or pupils. Just white space, and I dimly wondered how they could see. Their chests and feet were bare. Their shoulders were as broad as any Warden’s and their wings were magnificent, a brilliant white spanning at least eight feet on either side of them.

Their wings were also feathered.

Unlike mine, though, those feathers had hundreds of eyes in them, actual eyeballs. Eyeballs that did not blink, but roamed constantly and seemed to take in everything at once.

Each of the creatures held a golden sword, a real freaking sword—a sword that looked like it was the length of my leg. The whole combination was possibly the freakiest thing I’d ever seen, and I’d seen a lot of freaky things in my seventeen years of life.

They were here, the ones that ran this little show called life, who’d created the Wardens and who, to demons, were the equivalent of the boogeyman. Never in the history of ever had they been in the presence of anyone with a trace of demonic blood in them without ending their lives immediately.

I felt my wings—my feathered wings—tuck close to my back. I don’t even know why I tried to hide them at this point, but I was a wee bit self-conscious. However, I wasn’t willing to shift into my human form, not in the presence of these beings.

I couldn’t stop staring at them. Awe and fear warred inside me. They...they were angels and their feathered wings practically glowed, they were so bright. I’d never been allowed anywhere near them, not even when they came to the Wardens’ compound to meet with Abbot, the clan leader. I’d always been forced to leave the premises, and I never thought I’d ever see them.

An irresponsible urge to go to them hit me hard in the chest, and it took everything in me to ignore it. I breathed in deeply, and they smelled wonderful.

Roth jerked suddenly, and my heart lodged somewhere in my throat. Fear poured into me. Had they done something to him? Then I saw it. A shadow drifted off him, spilling into the air in front of us. I’d also seen that before. It happened whenever the tattooed familiars came off his skin.

I knew it wasn’t Bambi or the kittens, because this shadow came from the general vicinity of his...well, pretty much where the belt on his jeans was. Only one tattoo existed there, the only one I’d never seen.

The dragon familiar that Roth had warned only came off his skin when the shit hit the fan or he was seriously pissed.

The Alphas were here, and Thumper had finally come out to play.

two

BRACING MYSELF FOR the appearance of a large and very destructive dragon, I tensed and held my breath. We all were going to die horrible, burning deaths.

The shadow was huge as it shifted into thousands of little black dots that spun together in the air, like a mini cyclone, taking shape and form. Seconds passed as iridescent blue and gold scales appeared along the belly and the back of the dragon. Deep red wings sprouted, as well as a long, proud snout and clawed hind legs. Its eyes matched Roth’s, a bright yellow.

It was a beautiful creature.

But...the dragon was about the size of a cat—a really small cat.

Not exactly what I had been expecting.

Its wings moved soundlessly as it hovered to the left of Roth, its tail whipping around. It was so tiny and so...so cute.

I blinked slowly. “You...you have a...a pocket-size dragon?”

Zayne snorted from somewhere behind me.

A heavy sigh came from Roth.

Even though all our lives were in danger and we were all probably going to die, there was definitely no love lost between Roth and Zayne.


Tags: Jennifer L. Armentrout The Dark Elements Fantasy
Source: www.freenovel24.com