A slight surge of fear washed over the man she thought of as a brother. “We all see the darkness in your eyes. We know it’s there. We also know that power, all power has two choices. Good or evil.”

Amber didn’t think he understood. “I almost destroyed a man today.”

“And I’ve killed many. Your point, Amber?”

“’Tis against my nature.”


Simon moved to stand before her. “You have yet to determine what your true nature is. Kincaid’s gift has afforded you a real life. Now this dark power, as you call it, will give you even more power to fight the righteous fight. You have never been anything but innocent and careful of all life.”

“You saved my girls today,” Jake reminded her.

“And instead of keeping your thoughts to yourselves, you’re both coming to us,” Giles pointed out. “You have nothing to hide.”

Mrs. Dawson pushed from the chair she sat in and walked over to them. “Awareness is most important in this time in your life. Awareness and love.” Mrs. Dawson leveled her gaze to Amber. “Remember, Grainna lost her love, lost the part that made her sane. Within the bond your father laid was a blessing to keep you righteous. You have to believe that.”

Amber leaned into Gavin. Could it be that simple? Could love be the glue that keeps us on the path of righteousness?

“Love is always the answer.”

Amber glanced at her husband. Did she just hear my thought?


Perhaps she’s just a wise woman.

“Your husband was a lucky man, lass,” Simon told Mrs. Dawson.

“Damn straight he was,” she said.

Laughter filled the room.

“Now, enough of all this talk of darkness. I’d like to consume something other than Selma’s forget-everything potion. And then Giles and I need to rack his brain about entities that take over animals to accost little girls.”

“So there was someone else here.”

“Of course there was,” Mrs. Dawson said. “You don’t think that putz sitting in a jail cell controlled those wolves, do you?”

Giles released a long sigh. “I was hoping.”


“Well knock it off. We have work to do.” She turned to Amber. “And with all this newfound power, perhaps you can start laying wards over this house to help keep those babies safe. They’ve seen enough evil, don’t you think?”

“Yes, ma’am. I’ll try.”

“We’ll try,” Gavin added. “Together.”

“Good. Let’s get to work.”


Raine sat before both Mouse and Clarisse.

“Their power is united,” Mouse informed her. “I escaped with my life only because of the human who offered himself as a distraction.”

“Who holds the most power?”

“It’s hard to tell. Neither one of them were approachable. Their shield wasn’t breached by an ant.”

“And you, Clarisse? Did you accomplish your task?”

The beautiful blonde lifted her chin, her perfect figure stretched like a cat. “Cian is in my bed. It’s only a matter of time.”

Raine sat back with a smile playing on her lips.

“Time? We have plenty of time.”

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