A new player is introduced into Mari’s already complicated world:
I looked up. It felt like someone was watching me. I glanced around the room. The door was still closed, and no one was around. I hadn’t heard anyone enter. Their maids were silent, but not that silent. I looked back around the room. The feeling was still there, but I was alone.
My focus went back to the documents scattered around the room in glass cases. One toward the far window caught my attention. The carnelian lines around my hand pulsated as if to tell me I was going in the right direction. The tingles in my arm felt much like they did when I was around Seth. I missed him so much, and I was nowhere near knowing how to get him back. It was like Seth was sending me a sign even though we were far apart. I moved slowly down the line of books. Something was calling to the stone that was now imprinted into my arm. I stopped at each book as I passed. Why was one calling to me and all the others not? As I got close to the one I really wanted to see, I paused again. I still felt like someone was watching me. I looked down at the words on the page in the box in front of me. They weren’t the ones calling to me, yet were pretty all the same.
“Figured this would be where you ran off to,” Logan said quietly from somewhere in the room.
I was sure I didn’t hear him enter, and I had no clue how long he had been there. He stepped out of the shadow he was hidden in and slowly slunk across the room. Logan had always puzzled me. Around everyone else, you would think he was just another very friendly jock, but alone, he was completely different. His movements were always perfect and graceful, but he kept that hidden from everyone else. I remember the first time I was alone with him. Logan was exciting, and he made me feel like I was the one he had spent his life hunting. I still felt that vibe from him, but now it was just confusing. I didn’t have feelings for him anymore, beyond the annoyance I still felt about our last date. That would probably last forever. The reason I didn’t trust guys in general, and rightfully so, was standing in front of me now. Having him slowly analyzing me was strange. I still got butterflies in my stomach—anyone would get that when someone as hot as him was looking at you. But I didn’t have the loving feelings that once went with those butterflies.
And new mysteries to be solved:
I was going to do it right this time. I pictured the Jones house library, and the book that called to me at the party over Thanksgiving. By the time I finished thinking of the book we were there, standing in front of it. Ty took a breath and moved a few feet away from me.
“I’ve never done that more than a once in a day. That was a bit weird,” Ty commented, shaking out the hand that had been touching the stone.
I nodded and looked down at the book with the ancient text. I still felt a hum coming off the book. I wanted to touch it and see if the pages were humming like I felt they would be. I peered into the box and looked at the weird lines. It was nothing I could understand. I looked up and around the room. Logan wasn’t there. I really wanted to touch the book.
“What is it?” Ty asked, stepping behind me and looking over my shoulder.
“I don’t know. Something about the book makes me feel like I should touch it. Like if I touched it I would know the secret it’s trying to tell me,” I explained. “Gosh, that sounds weird,” I added as I turned around.
“Weird? Yes. But I’ve seen a lot of weird things happen since we first found these stones,” Ty said, holding his up. The glow I normally saw off the stone was gone. I looked down to my arm. The lines were faded around the edges. We were going to have to wait until the power returned, or for Logan.
I looked up at Ty. I really wanted to see why I should touch the book. Ty nodded to me. It didn’t matter how weird it was, I was going to try. I looked around the room one more time. Ty stayed right behind me, he was so big that if anyone was in the room they would be blocked from actually seeing me while I touched the book. It felt like I was stealing, or doing something wrong. These texts were old and priceless. Oils from your hands could damage the paper, but I still had to know. The longer I stood there, the more the book pulled at me. I lifted the glass case only enough to get a finger in to touch the text. I slid my finger in and felt the shock as I touched it. I quickly pulled my hand out in surprise.
I turned back to Ty to tell him what happened when the shimmer of Logan traveling into the room caught my eye.
And true love to reunite with:
I leaned forward and pulled his head down to meet mine. I kissed him again. I needed to. I needed to feel that he was real. Each time he went away, and my memories changed, it felt like I lost a part of him. In losing him, I was losing part of me. He was everything I ever wanted. It was scary to feel that way about one person, but it was true. Even Logan and our past couldn’t compare with the feelings floating around inside me at just the touch of Seth’s lips to mine. He was everything I needed.
“And you?” he asked as he pulled back a little.
“Me what?” I asked, looking up into his eyes. The desire I saw there was surely mirrored in my own.
“How long has it been in your time?” Seth asked as he eyed me over, looking for any change in me.
“Five weeks,” I replied, watching his eyes roam over my body. When most men looked at you like that it was creepy, but the way he looked made my stomach tumble.
“And Ty was with you there?” Seth asked, finally bringing his eyes up to mine.
“Yes,” I answered, looking up at him. Did he really want to just talk after all this time apart?
“But he didn’t come with you,” Seth replied to my answer.
He balanced on the wall with only one hand, allowing his free hand to reach up and touch my face. I closed my eyes and tried to memorize his touch. No matter how I was with him now, it would never last. I had a feeling we would always have to fight to be together.
“No,” I responded, feeling his body press up against me. His lips met mine again, and I rested my hands on his bare chest. There were a few perks to the Egyptian military clothing, or rather lack of clothing.
“Why,” Seth began as he moved his kisses to my ear. “Are.” He kissed down my neck, sending tingles to my toes. “You.” He reached the indent where my neck and shoulder met. “Here?”
He finished asking his question, but the kisses continued as he pushed the fabric of the multiple tunics I wore out of the way to continue kissing down a line. He began moving back up my neck slowly as he waited for a response, but I was having trouble even remembering the question. It was hard to carry on a conversation when we couldn’t keep ourselves apart.