The fallen one (sons of.., p.12
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       The Fallen One (Sons of the Dark Mother, Book One), p.12

           Lenore Wolfe
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  Lucius sat in the comfortable chair behind a beautiful, mahogany desk in Conrad’s office. At least ten minutes ago, Micah had come in and sat in the plush, leather office chair across from him. He’d waited patiently for him to say what bugged him. When he didn’t, he eyed Micah. It wasn’t like Micah not to be readily forthcoming. “You look troubled,” he finally said.

  Not anyone knew Micah well enough to know when he was troubled, but Micah had been with Lucius a long time.

  A few thousand years, long.

  Even so, Micah didn’t answer as quickly as Lucius would have liked, given their situation.

  Micah looked out the window, seemed to watch the comings and goings of Second Chances, across the way. Finally, he glanced at Lucius. “Does Justice know we’re here, yet?” Micah asked.

  Lucius nodded in answer.

  Micah’s lips flattened a bit at that, but otherwise showed no outward sign of his distress at this news. He sat there, looking at Lucius for several long moments, in which Lucius said nothing.

  He waited. He knew Micah would only speak when ready.

  Micah frowned. Apparently, he needed to spill it sooner. That couldn’t be good. That meant what bothered him was time sensitive.

  Yet, still, Lucius waited.

  “Mira’s going to meet her sister,” Micah said.

  Lucius stilled. What did that mean? “She’s gone to see her before,” he said.

  Micah sighed, showing the only emotion he let come to the surface—frustration. “Not as her sister, she hasn’t,” Micah said.

  Lucius frowned. “Tell me you’re saying what I think you are saying,” he said.

  “I’m saying exactly that,” Micah answered. “And there’s more.”

  Lucius silver brows shot up, but he waited.

  “Dracon has her other sisters,” Micah said.

  Lucius frowned, now. “I thought she’s been missing—what—since she was a child—when they all were split up.”

  Micah nodded. “Yes. But it would seem, the one who should not be named found her and sent her to Justice, as a message.”

  Lucius sat forward in his chair. Things rarely surprised Lucius. This did. And he didn’t like what it implied. “Tell me he didn’t….”

  Micah shook his head. “It would seem that’s exactly what he did.”

  “Does Justice know?” Lucius said.

  Again, Micah shook his head. “He knows she’s been turned, but he has no idea by whom,” Micah stood and went to pour them both a drink, from the beautiful crystal, decanter set, Conrad kept on a dark, mahogany shelf. “She has been sent to Dracon.”

  Lucius nodded his approval, as Micah set the aged whiskey before him. He didn’t drink often, but he appreciated the best when he did. And Conrad only kept the best in his private stash. “That’s good. There’s much she’ll have to learn if she’s to control her hunger. “He got up from his chair and walked around the desk. “Constantine has sent Justice quite the message,” he said.

  Micah frowned at this. “So, it would seem.”

  “He knew exactly how to deal Justice the worst possible blow. He has turned a sister and messed with the sister’s true power in the process. A pretty brilliant strategy.”

  Micah nodded. “When it comes to war, he is a master. There likely isn’t a battle plan he hasn’t seen. But there’s still one thing he might not have accounted for.”

  Lucius smiled, placing a finger to his lips. “Shhh,” he said.

  Micah grinned. “Okay, so how do we use this to our advantage?”

  Lucius walked back around the desk and sat back in the black leather chair. “We let Mira do what her heart is compelling her to do.”

  Micah’s dark brows shot up as understanding dawned. “You mean—let Mira help Jes to remember….”

  Lucius smiled. “Get Roman to take you through one of his doorways back to the Gargoyle Mansion,” he said, wincing at the name Mira dubbed their beautiful stone mansion. She’d done so because of the life-like Gargoyles that sat both inside and outside the mansion.

  “Bite your tongue,” Micah said.

  Lucius couldn’t help but grin at that, though grinning did not come naturally to him, and he did so rarely. But he knew Micah didn’t refer to the Gargoyle mansion, but to the mystical doorways, Roman erected for them to step between one place and another. “You can always fly a thousand miles back to Denver,” he said, grinning, again, at the look on Micah’s face. “That’s what I thought.” He got out a pad and pen from the desk drawer. “Get the old medicine man to work his magick to help out Dracon with her other sister.”

  “An excellent idea,” Micah said. “And you will fill in Justice…?”

  “And make him want to draw out what’s-his-face?” Lucius started to shake his head.

  “He has to know, Lucius,” Micah said.

  “What purpose could it serve? She’s vampire now, and she cannot be changed back. She has to learn to live with it.”

  “You said yourself he sends Justice a message.” Micah reminded him. “And Justice can’t get the meaning behind that message without knowing who changed her—and why.”

  Lucius tapped the pen against the pad several times before he finally answered. “It would seem you better find someone who can find Amar.”

  Micah actually looked surprised. “Amar?”

  “Yes,” Lucius answered. “You will need her help with introducing the sisters to Dara.”

  Micah looked as though someone punched him. “Dara?”

  Lucius couldn’t help but feel some shame. He knew he’d been sworn to secrecy, but he’d always hated keeping secrets from the ones he considered as family.

  But he could see the truth in Micah’s dark eyes. “It’s okay, brother,” Micah used the term that spoke of the bond built between them. They did not share blood. This bond had been forged. “You would have never kept such a secret unless you were bound by oath—and did so to save her life.”

  Lucius couldn’t hide the relief he felt, though he’d lived much too long to let it show.

  “So, we find Amar,” Micah said. “And you’ll speak to Justice—before someone else speaks of it to Dracon,” he said quietly.

  “Dracon?” Lucius frowned. “Indeed. He’ll be much more difficult to control than Justice when he learns who’s behind this. It’s one thing to know she’s been turned, quite another that he’s turned her for such an insidious plan.”

  “I couldn’t blame Dracon for what he’d try to do to him. I couldn’t blame either of them,” Micah said. “It’s all I can do not to go after him myself.”

  “That’s an emotional response,” Lucius warned. “And one that makes humans do some amazing and honorable things. But these things would be pure folly with this one.”

  Micah frowned. “Indeed.”

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