Fyra is on the run. Permanently. Pursued by fellow underworld demons—and one very angry vampire, she’s running out of options. After failing her last mission of forcing vampire, Bishop, to give the demon world the information they want, Fyra knows she’s as good as dead. Too bad she’s no good at hiding. Everywhere she goes, fires break out. Her combustible personality is more than annoying—it’s going to get her killed. Tracked by the random fires reported on the news, her enemies can easily find her—unless Bishop can find her first.
Can be Hell.
Bishop Laurent has to free himself of the bond Fyra tricked him into…and do it without exposing his own icy secrets to anyone, especially his team. But after he captures her, he sees past her fiery personality. Her knowledge of the underworld would be a huge asset, a perfect reason to keep their bond intact. Only Fyra overhears them and refusing to be a pawn, goes on the run again. Bishop has to find her first, and this time, he must admit his real feelings for her…at least to himself. Can he find her in time to save her life and make their bond last forever? Or will they be killed fighting Hell with fire and ice?
Bishop stared at the disheveled room, clenching and unclenching his fists.
His nostrils flared. Among the scattered drawers and strewn clothing was her scent.
With the owners dead, this house was no longer a place to lure humans to become hosts for demons. But she crossed into his world through their bond, yet landed here instead of outside of the compound where he and team stayed.
He didn’t know what she really looked like. She’d only come to him, tricked him into bonding, while in human hosts.
I pick what you like, Bishop.
The memory of her mocking tone shot straight to his manhood. Damn that bond!
He took another inhale. Brimstone, of course, but laced with a…sweet woodfire scent? Yeah, like roasting marshmallows over a campfire. Then having sex and licking the sticky goo off each other.
Gah! She was a demon and he didn’t even know her real name. Always her with the upper-hand. She knew his name, had known his habit of frequenting busty, buxom humans to sate his physical drives. Was able to use her knowledge to lure him into swearing himself to her.
Bishop snarled and spun around. Stomping out of the room, he brushed aside the remnants of the crime scene tape from the murders of the house’s owners. His demon must’ve busted through the tape, ripping it to shreds.
Had she known the owners, the underworld’s human servants, were dead? Yet she’d entered the realm in this house.
He stopped. Backed up.
The ends of several pieces of tape were singed. He grasped a piece between his fingertips. Black dust, like soot, covered the ends.
He narrowed his eyes. A clue to store away; the fact resonated deep in his bones.
He stormed out of the empty house into the night. A dog barked next door at an almost identical colonial house, its claws scraping against the windows of the dwelling. His bark brimmed with protective instincts and terror. The pooch sensed another predator in the area and feared for his people.
“I’m not gonna hurt your humans,” Bishop growled.
The dog quieted.
Huh. That was a first, but they were smart creatures. He wished humans were the same. If that woman hadn’t volunteered for demon possession, naively thinking it was a one-way ticket to the supernatural world, he wouldn’t be in this heap of a mess. Why would a human want to become a vampire anyway? Couldn’t they just be happy being humans and enjoy their short life? Sip on merlot and not worry about finding a vein to tap.
Bishop glared at the dog, a white poodle quivering from head to toe. “Which way did she go?”
He wasn’t sure the animal heard him until the pup’s head kicked to gesture down the street.
“Good boy.” Bishop climbed into his Hummer and slammed the door. He sat for a moment, staring into the shadows created by streetlamps.
She was on foot. Had to be.
When his leader’s mate was bonded to a demon and the bastard crossed over, he’d possessed his underworld powers. What powers would Bishop’s demon have?
Bishop scrubbed his face and fired up his vehicle. Hope it wasn’t teleportation. He was already behind the curve.
If she wasn’t able to flash where she’d been before, then she was either on foot, or she’d lifted a vehicle.
His demon had little conscience. She probably stole a car instead of running.
He studied the area. Suburban, quiet. Older homes full of character from early nineteenth century construction. Close to a college campus, but full of families instead of frat houses. His demon would only find plain cars, probably a few years old, with some wear and tear.
He fired up the engine, then idled through the streets in the direction the dog indicated.
Sirens wailed, disrupting the silence of the night. Ahead of Bishop, an orange glow carried through the moonless night. Must be a fire, a mile, maybe two, away.
Bishop almost dismissed it until he remembered the seared plastic tape at the house.
His demon was hot.
Pressing on the accelerator, he aimed for the blaze. Firetrucks zoomed in front of him, racing to the scene.
Bishop stopped a block away, blending in with other late night rubberneckers. Smoke rolled from a building. A gas station. And not a building, but a car parked at the pumps was engulfed in flames. Did she really have to pick the most dangerous place for open flame? If it was her. But his old friend, intuition, curled through his gut like a tendril of smoke.
Yes. It was her. He’d catch her and finish her. Cover his mistake before she threatened his team. The dependable, calm Bishop had royally fucked up. He’d make it right. His friends had been through a lot and Bishop would mop up his own mess and keep them protected, while protecting himself. He’d do it to honor his mam.
Firemen hopped out, but Bishop remained in his vehicle. Hoses were unraveled and they battled the fire as people fled the premises but stayed in watching proximity.
Bishop scanned the crowd. His demon should be in her own form. Could she possess another human without the help of the humans who’d summon someone like her? It was possible, but his pull to her was stronger, likely not from being muted in a host. He had no clue what she looked like, but he studied the crowd closely.
His bond didn’t ping, didn’t tighten his gut sensing her proximity. She wasn’t among the spectators.
You can’t hide from me, demon.
Fyra quit running.
You can’t hide from me, demon.
Bollocks. Her big, blond vampire knew she’d made it to his realm. Having Bishop after her didn’t spear her with panic like having one of the Circle of Thirteen targeting her.
Although the end result might be the same.
No. Bishop despised her, but he wasn’t innately cruel like Rancor. Her boss relished his cruelty above the other twelve of the Circle.
She shuddered. Her skin still crawled from Rancor’s touch. After he was done brutalizing her, he’d have skinned her and used her pelt as a cloak. And probably fucked that, too.
Demons had no sense of decency.
Okay. Plan B just became Plan B-right-freaking-now.
She had to find another car to steal. Stupid humans. Why couldn’t they leave a car with a full tank of gas sitting around?
Why did Fyra have to steal the only one with an empty tank? Her and fuel don’t mix.
In the underworld, it didn’t matter if she spewed a little flame here and there. She ran hotter than most other fire demons. Her kind kept the fires of the underworld going. Job security down there. Major bummer up here.
She shoved her hands into the navy blue hoodie she’d pilfered from the cult house and put her head down. Two blocks ahead was a nice, charcoal gray car parked at the curb. It appeared a few years older so she didn’t have to worry about so many of the new security features. Things were so much easier decades ago. People had actually left their keys in the ignition then. So handy.
Dragging in a calming breath, she willed her internal inferno to calm.
Cool air snaked around her, as if drawn to the heat. The beginning of winter was a good time to be stranded on earth for a fire demon. Control of her abilities was easier when she didn’t have hot weather encouraging her blaze. Another benefit: stocking hats.
Her flame-hued hair was tucked underneath a standard black cloth hat. She rolled her shoulders. Too bad the previous owner of the hoodie hadn’t been a larger guy. Her bust took up most of the extra room. Same with the sweats. Her ass rounded out the back until the waistband dipped and showed off her crack every time she bent.
She reached the car and trotted to the driver’s door. Closing her eyes, she laid a finger on the lock. A small surge of energy poured into the lock and the satisfying thunk signaled an unlocked door. She grinned and crawled in.
Another zap at the ignition and the engine purred.
Almost as good as an orgasm. Unless it was with Bishop. He could make a girl roar. And she liked it.
She pulled away and tore through Freemont. She knew the town well enough, but she couldn’t stay. No hiding in Bishop’s backyard, he’d find her in no time.
Suh-weet. The car had over a half a tank of gas so she could ditch this city before Rancor found a prime vampire to possess. He had surely sent one or two second tier demons after her, but he had to earn his reputation back. She’d destroyed it by getting away; therefore, he’d use her to demonstrate that it was nothing more than a fluke, claim he’d let her get away to lead them to Bishop.
She and Bishop weren’t simpatico, but she didn’t want to see him get hurt. She was fond of the big lug. Not even his do-gooder heart turned her off. Could she find a way to warn him about Rancor without revealing her location? Then the two males could tussle while she conned her way to a tropical island where she could start bonfires with her fingertips.
There was plenty of time for her to think about it as she drove. Maneuvering through the city, she crossed into West Creek and found a way out of town. Where was she heading? West?
Good enough. There had to be some metropolis to get lost in west of Freemont.