Isabel, Ged and Vincent walked past us and into the apartment. Ant spoke quietly, “We need to get you all inside.”
Matt picked up Drake and took Fae’s hand and dragged them inside. Dee pulled Sage along and Dev was holding my hand but he seemed a little more shaken than before. Once we were in inside the apartment Dev asked, “What’s going on? Why are there strange people wandering around the apartment.”
“The vampires are at war. They want to reveal to humans our existence. They are making trouble in New York.”
Sage interrupted. “They are causing trouble because Il Cane was supposed to be away? Instead she sent you.”
Ant shook his head. “Mother thinks they wanted them both away. Valence is causing problems in Europe while Brandon was causing trouble here. Splitting them up was not their goal.”
“They didn’t know the vampires here were already doing damage.”
Ant shrugged. “Maybe that was what Brandon was doing, maybe he wanted them split up. Valence didn’t want you that’s for sure. Mother says there have been reports he’s here, in the city. The rumors of your death need to stay that way Nox.”
“I’m not hiding.”
Ant nodded. “I know. But we need to make arrangements to bury you. I know you had to tell your family. But they can’t leave until this is done. They’ll be vulnerable.”
Dee chimed in. “I’m not staying here. I have to work.”
Dev nodded, “So do I.”
Ant shook his head. “I will block you two in. All of you are here for the rest of this fight. If they get you Nox will do anything to get you back and that includes giving himself up so no. You will go no where.”
Dev looked at Sage and sighed. “Fine. Deadshot you think you can hack our work schedules to be off the next few weeks?”
He grinned at me. “Yeah. Easy peasy.” He cracked his knuckles and went to his room to grab his laptop.
Ant smiled. “Thank you for understanding. Jack can and will help when at all possible. We won’t let you get fired, but we need you to be safe. If you stay safe, then Nox will be safe. And that’s my priority.”
Sage walked into the room and groaned, “You didn’t do a very good job of keeping him safe before.”
Ant’s entire body slumped. And I sighed. “It’s not Ant’s fault. Blaming him does nothing but make him feel worse for what happened. It’s my fault. Actually not even that. We got caught in a fire fight, we were stuck in the middle. It’s the Venatori’s fault.”
Ant perked up a little. Sage looked at me and asked, “Why is it their fault?” Like he needed more reason to hate the Venatori.
“They sent us down there. They followed us and when the Vampires came into their sights they attacked, we got caught in the middle.”
He nodded but he did’t really look like he believed me. They wanted to blame someone specific. Someone to hate. I could give him that. “Eloise Dean used me and I intend to give a little payback.” Sadly that was going to be done at a later date. And I had to make sure the kids didn’t get hurt.
Sage looked at his computer then at me. He looked like he wanted to say something, but he went back to his work. I loved watching him work, but for some reason he seemed tense. Something was still wrong.
It was time to make my family safe. “Matt, I need you to work with Isabel and create a magically null boundary. No magic can pass, in or out. “
Dev sighed, “You are going to cut us off from everything, including you.”
I nodded. “I have to. I’ll be back. We can take it down then. We can work on filters, specific people, whatever, when this is done. For now, no magic, your’s, mine or theirs. None.”
He nodded. Isabel came over and introduced herself to Matt. “Ged and Vincent will stay here as muscle. I trust them with my life and now I’m trusting them with yours. “
“Who’s watching your back?” Dee asked from the kitchen. She was making cookies with Drake. Something I was coming to understand was her nervous habit – her coping mechanism.
Ant answered for her. “I have his back.”
Dee frowned, “Like Sage said…”
“It wasn’t his fault. He did what I told him to do.”
Dee dusted her hands off on her apron and walked around the island to Ant. “Next time, you protect him above all else.”
He nodded. “I can’t do that Dee.”
“Why not? You are his body guard.”
Ant’s eyes dropped to the ground, “It’s more than that. He is my master. Now more so than ever. Disobeying him hurts us both. I will protect him with my life. But if he orders me I cannot disobey.”
I turned to him and frowned, “Really? This is how it is?”
Ant smiled at me. “This is how it has been for the past 4 years. The difference being, we both believe now. I feel you, you feel me. That bond is unbreakable except in death, and even then I think you’d drag me down with you if you ever fell for real.”
I sighed. “I’m sorry.”
Ant grinned. “I’m not. I am no longer just the son of Il Cane. I have my own purpose. 800 years in her shadow and now I’m more.” He chuckled, “You are just going to have to get used to me being around all the time. I’m your Ryan.”
I groaned. Ant’s grin grew larger. I rolled my eyes, “I guess it could be worse.”
Ant sighed. “But now we really must go. Isabel and Matt will erect their shields as soon as they figure it out.”
Dev asked, “You aren’t taking any weapons?”
Ant smiled. “We have all we need. Damnation and Salvation will do little good against vampires. And when he can throw a fireball faster than he can pull his gun I think we are better off this way.”
Dev sighed and came towards me. He wrapped his arms around my neck and gave me a stern look. “You die and I’m going to kick your ass.”
I grinned at him. “I don’t plan on it.”
Sage laughed. “We heard that before.”
I stuck my tongue out at him and he crooked a finger at me. “What did I tell you about that?”
I sighed and went to my mysterious blue eyed boy. He pulled me down and kissed me hard. I felt that comforting static charge between us and he yelped against my lips. “Ouch.”
I pressed harder and his mouth opened to me and our kiss deepened. He’d forgotten about the pain.
I hugged the boys and Dee and I shared a small kiss before I was left kissing Dev at the door. Ged and Vincent took up stance on the inside. My family would be safe while I went off to fight. God they better be!