The Struggle

The Struggle

Page 21

After all, I was a damn god.

I could do that.

I should have already done this—checked in on her after I’d seen her sleeping. Basil was right. It wasn’t exactly safe, even if she could protect herself or if the people she was with could throw down. But if I saw her again, could I really leave her again?

Lowering my gaze, I closed my eyes and pictured her face. A smile tugged at the corners of my lips. Her features pieced together so quickly and perfectly it was almost like she was standing right before me. Holding onto her image, I searched for her.

I found nothing.

“What the hell?” I opened my eyes.

Heart rate kicking up, I tried again, reaching out into the void, searching for her imprint and there was . . . there was nothing.

Confusion rose swiftly. That didn’t make sense. No matter where Josie was, I should be able to find her. Mentally backtracking to the last place I knew she’d been at, Gable’s house, I pictured the home and felt myself shift.

A second later, I was standing in front of the home Gable lived in.

“Hell,” I growled. Immediately, I knew something had gone down here.

The driveway was cracked—not just cracked, but split wide open, creating a steep crevice. My head jerked up, and I rushed past the rift and pushed open the door. It creaked and fell from its hinges, crashing off the floor, but I didn’t really hear it.

The house was utterly destroyed.

What had happened outside had continued inside and there were no signs of life, but I could feel it—a residue of power so potent that it was not from this realm. There was a coating that belonged not to just one god but many. Stepping back from the destruction, my hands closed into fists as knots of unrest formed.

Something had happened here.

Something bad.

And if I couldn’t feel Josie, it meant one of two things. Her presence was being blocked, warded against me, or . . . or she was no longer in this realm.

Chapter 13

I willed myself across the hundreds of miles, from the coast of California, beyond the Badlands, to the office of the Dean of the Covenant University.

Appearing in the center of the room, about three seconds passed before those in the room realized they had a visitor. Marcus was in the chair behind the large mahogany desk, reclining back, one leg hooked over the other, arms folded loosely over his chest as he listened to the two before him.

Deacon was sitting.

Luke was standing directly to his right.

Seeing them and not finding Solos with them was all kinds of wrong. That bastard hadn’t deserved what’d happened to him.

Marcus was the first to see me.

Blood draining quickly from his face, he stood in a rush, bright green eyes wide. “Holy gods . . .”

Luke spun and stiffened, his expression locking down as he easily glided to the side, blocking Deacon, who was staring at me like he’d seen a ghost.

I smiled at the not-so-subtle protective move.

“Seth,” Deacon breathed, coming to his feet. “You just appeared . . . out of thin air . . .”

“You know, there was nothing more annoying than Apollo or any of the other gods just randomly popping up whenever they wanted,” I said, my gaze flickering over them as I walked toward the desk. “But I’ve got to admit, being able to do it is pretty fucktastic.”

Marcus continued to stare.

I smirked. “Yeah, spoiler alert. I’m kind of a god now.” Pausing, I leaned forward, placing my hands on the smooth surface of the desk. “Isn’t that scary?”

“Yeah,” he breathed. “It is.”

Raising a brow, I pushed away from the desk and crossed my arms. My gaze flickered to Luke. “Sorry about knocking you out. No offense meant.”

A muscle flexed along Luke’s jaw. “Not sure if I’m supposed to accept that or not.”

I shrugged. “Everyone can relax. I’m not here to start a riot or bring the roof down.”

“How?” Deacon breathed. “How are you . . . ?”

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