I groan and snuggle closer to the heat on my right side. I don’t want to wake up yet. The warmth sinks down into my bones and wraps me in a safety I haven’t felt since dad.
I feel another tickle like touch on my nose trailing down to my lips and softly touching the back of my neck.
I shake my head and hear soft laughter. I tense as a nervous feeling bubbles in my gut.
My eyes pop open and all I see is dark washed jeans.
I tilt my head back; my hair falling away from my face and look into brilliant copper eyes.
“Hey.” I smile and turn ten shades of red.
My head is on Dean’s lap and my naughty arm is wrapped around Dean’s hard belly underneath his shirt. Gods his skin is so warm and surprisingly soft for a guy. And smooth.
I slept on Dean. Oops.
“We’re here,” Kayden says softly.
I bit my lip and sit up.
Kayden leans over and pecks a kiss on my check as I rub the sleep from my eyes.
“I slept the whole time?” I mumble smiling a Kayden.
His eyes get this sparkle in them and he nods his head.
I look out the window of the black jeep Jeff rented for us to drive.
My breath catches in my throat.
It’s a freaking castle. I mean a real castle. It’s old and gothic looking, tall and wide. Those pointing things look to be touching the clouds and with the mountains back in the distance. It’s a breathtaking fairytale picture.
We’re pulled into a gravel lot with more than a few different types of vehicles. And people. All kinds of people.
“It’s a castle.” I gasp looking wide-eyed at Dean and Kayden. “This selection thingy is at a castle. We’re staying in a castle.”
Wow. This is awesome. Who wouldn’t want to spend three months living in a castle?
“Not exactly,” Cam says from the front passenger seat.
My smile turns into a frown as I look out the windows again.
There are people everywhere. Some are getting bags out of their cars. There are a couple of guys throwing a football back and forth out to the side on the grass. Two girls walk up those huge stone steps. There are even people eating outside on the terrace.
“We’re here just to check in and let the Council know we’re here,” Cam says looking out his window at the little girl picking wildflowers. His lips are puckered in thought.
“What is it?” Aden’s gruff voice comes from the driver seat.
“She’s an empath,” Cam says softly still watching the little girl.
I shift in my seat looking out at the little girl. She’s maybe eight or nine years old, dressed in a bright green summer dress with white, pink, and purple flowers clutched in her small hands.
“Isn’t she a little young to be here?” I mumble watching the little girl spin in a circle.
“Yeah, she is,” Cam says.
“Maybe it’s not what we’re thinking.” Nick sleepy filled voice rings out from behind me.
I don’t know what everyone’s thinking but me. I don’t have a very good feeling about this at all. The others said the Council takes empaths and forces em-bonds when they reach age fifteen, but seeing this little girl I can’t help but wonder and worry that they start taking them as soon as their empathic abilities start to show.
“Let’s get this over with,” Aden says getting out.
We all follow suit leaving the jeep and following Aden up the wide stone steps.
“Are you okay?” I ask Dean lacing our fingers together. I felt his sadness in the jeep when we were talking about the little girl.
Dean smiles at me and nods his head; his hand squeezes mine.
I know he’s not okay. I can feel his guilt, but I don’t have a clue how to make him feel better. I know he blames himself for everything that has happened once he let the rage take him over.
“OMG!” A girl screeches making me jump and turn to the left.
“Kayden.” Her red lips bloom into a smile as she struts her way over to us.
I shift on my feet watching as she swings her hips in a too short blue jean shorts and a tank top the shows off her flat belly.
Her pale blond hair is piled messily on top of her head. Her brown eyes are locked onto Kayden standing to the right of me. I feel the tension coming off him in waves.
I do not like this girl.
My free hand curls into a fist, my nails biting into my palm as she throws her tan arms around Kayden’s neck. Her huge boobs getting ready to topple out of her low-cut top.
Kayden’s green eyes widen as he looks at me and removes her slim tanned arms from around his neck.
That doesn’t stop her, she saddles up to his left side. Wrapping one arm around his and trailing her manicured fingers down his chest.
“It’s been forever.” She purrs leaning into him.
And that’s it. The last straw. I don’t know what it is, but something pushes me forward. Saying her dirty hands should not be anywhere near him.
I snap moving forward, my hand lashes out grabbing her hair and jerking her away from him.
She squeals. Her hands going to mine in her hair. With more strength then I thought I had, I jerk her back and she lands on her ass with a thud.
“Mine.” I snarl out and see her own face morph into a snarl. Baring her teeth at me as I do the same to her.
She climbs to her feet, her eyes flashing yellow. I just dare her to do something as my sight comes into view and the ethereal ribbons of her emotions daring me to touch.
A laugh busts our tension.
I turn to Cam and Nick who’s both howling with laughter, hands on their knees.
“I can’t believe you did that.” Nick laughs hands on his hips.
A red haze clears from my mind and I can’t believe I did it either.
I give the guys a sheepish smile and move back towards Dean. Not looking at Kayden.
He pissed me off. He should’ve never let that fleabag touch him.
I feel Kayden come up behind me and when his arms wrap around my middle I tense looking at Dean with his famous smirk gracing those lush lips.
Kayden lays his scruffy cheek against mine, “I’m sorry. I should have reacted faster.” He whispers in my ear. “She’s just a friend, I haven’t seen in a while.”
A loud gasp has me turning my head back to the girl. Her mouth is open, eyes wide staring at Kayden’s arms around me. His thumb rubbing soothing circles right above the waistband of my jeans.
“Breanna, I would like to introduce you to Avery. My Mate.”
Kayden says never taking his arms from my body. His thumb doing crazy things to my insides.
A sneer forms on Breanna’s face. Her hands curl on her hips.
“Friends. Ha. Don’t let him lie to you. We shared a bed more times than I can count. And it wasn’t for sleeping.” She smiles and turns away going back to her group of friends looking in our direction, her hips shaking the whole time.
An ugly feeling blooms in my belly at her words and I shrug Kayden’s arms off me moving closer to Dean, using his body as a shield between me and Kayden.
I stand there not really seeing. I know me being upset about this is silly. Hearing Kayden has had a relationship with her has soured me. It’s completely irrational. I had a relationship before I met them. I didn’t except either of them not to have one either. But hearing it come from the girl’s mouth it’s self is unsettling. It makes me feel uneasy.
I feel a tug bringing me out of my thoughts.
“Come on love,” Dean says.
We finish climbing up the stone steps with Kayden lagging behind. Guilt and worry eating up the bond between us.