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The Struggle

The Struggle

Page 3

Somewhere in the house, doors slammed open and someone shouted one word.

“Earthquake!”

Earthquake!

Relief punched me so hard in the gut that I laughed—laughed loudly and a bit crazily. Just an earthquake.

Duh.

I was in southern California.

Not everything had to be supernatural.

Lowering the dagger, I turned to the spiral staircase. Several half-asleep people stood there, and of course, I was using the term “people” loosely.

There wasn’t a single mortal in the house.

The shaking subsided as Deacon ran his fingers through his messy blond curls. “I hate California,” he grumbled.

Behind him, Luke was scrubbing a hand over his eyes. His bronze-colored hair was sticking up in every direction. Standing beside them was Gable. Poor Gable. We’d literally plucked him off a beach, told him that his father was Poseidon and that he was also a demigod whose powers were bound, and then he witnessed up close and personal what a Titan was capable of.

The fact that he was standing there and not rocking in a corner somewhere was admirable.

“We haven’t had one that bad in a long time,” Gable said with sleep clinging to his voice. “We’ll definitely get an aftershock from that.”

Deacon’s pale gray eyes widened. “Aftershock?”

Gable nodded. “Or that could’ve been a foreshock. You never really know.”

“What is that?” Deacon lowered his hand, frowning. “Like an uncircumcised earthquake?”

Aiden, his older brother, lifted his chin and stared at the ceiling, slowly shaking his dark head. There were no two brothers less alike. Well, maybe Lucifer and Michael. They were brothers.

My lips twitched into a tired smile as Gable explained exactly what a foreshock was. Aiden reached out, draping an arm over the shoulders of Alex Andros. Her hair was a mess, but a sexy mess. When I woke up, my hair looked like I’d stuck my fingers in an electrical outlet, but not Alex. Hers was a tumble of wavy locks.

She was beautiful in a wild, unfettered way, and while we’d tentatively bonded over our shared time with evil psycho gods and our truly weird relation to Apollo, I wasn’t nearly as close to her as Deacon and Luke were.

She and Aiden were legends, actual legends.

And they were so in love with one another that there was no doubt in my mind that they’d spend eternity together wanting no one else.

Aiden placed a hand on the railing as he stared down into the atrium, his silvery gaze seeming to go to the spot mine had when I’d first entered, to where the Titan Atlas had stood, holding Solos’s heart in his meaty grip—to where Seth had gone all God Killer on everyone, tapping into all our powers, our aether, and killing Atlas.

Something Seth should not have been able to do.

God, that felt like forever ago, but it wasn’t. Only about a day had passed since Atlas had come through those very doors and snuffed out Solos’s life in a heartbeat. Only the night before when Seth had become something so feared that the Olympian gods had ended Alex’s mortal life to prevent her from becoming it. Only hours since I’d done what Medusa had warned with the blade dipped in the blood of the Pegasus, knocking Seth out long enough for him to at least calm down. And it had only been this morning when Seth had escaped the panic room, found me in the library, made love to me, held me in his arms, and finally, finally told me he loved me.

Just seconds in a lifetime, and Seth had become a thing so powerful, so deadly that he’d left us, left me.

An ache lit up my chest as I blinked back tears I refused to allow to fall. I would not cry, because there was no time for that. As soon as Hercules got back from communing with the gods or whatever he’d left at dawn to do, I was out of here, gone from this house that pretty much dripped the kind of money I couldn’t even begin to wrap my head around.

Locating the other two demigods was what my father—Apollo—had ordered me to do, but that had fallen way down my priority list, and I didn’t even care. Didn’t give a flying Pegasus about what that said about me, because no one, no one had ever fought for Seth before.

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