We pushed through the front door in a single file line but the guns were blocked as we moved. I looked sort of out of place without a gun. But I didn’t really need one. I was defense. I could offense but I was more than happy to be the shield. I was good at being the shield.

The place was quiet but I felt the magics in the basement, the vampires there had found a confrontation. Of those that came inside, most went upstairs. There was a handful that were in charge of clearing the first floor while we went to where the fight was. There were just six of us. Six of us who were going to have to work together as a team in every future scenario. We might as well get used to it now.

The basement door was locked but it was a simple trick to unlock it from this side for me. Alex snickered, “You have to be the police’s worst nightmare.” I grinned at him as we kept moving down, the sounds of a fire fight was all that we could hear. The body guards moved in front of us. Alex frowned a little but said nothing. You get used to it. I said in my head and Alex looked at me and sighed.

But there was no comment. A flaming bolt came at us and splattered against the wall beside us. “I don’t want to hurt you.” Nathaniel called out.

“Fancy that Nate.” I said. “Cause you betrayed me once, I died thanks to your fire ball. I’m not going to play nice this time.”

We moved down the stairs and another fireball splattered above our heads. I formed a wall of air in front of us and on the vulnerable side. His aim was bound to get better and I didn’t want a repeat of that particular thing – specially with Alex at my side.

Alex sighed, “I think I’ll leave the heroics to you, if you don’t mind.”

“Just watch my back.” I said.

“Any time.” Alex smirked.

A thrid fireball splattered against the shield everyone winced at the accuracy of the shot. Which meant from there Nate could see us and we should be able to see him. Jae took up a lookout spot there while the rest of us headed down.

“Why don’t you come out and we’ll talk about this.” Ant yelled down.

“He won’t give me mercy. There is no point in talking.” He responded.

“He might be persuaded.” Ant said, but he looked at me and gave me an all too knowing look. I wasn’t going to have to kill him. There was a lot of reasons the rest wanted him dead.

“Tell us who all is with you Nate.” Ryan said. “And I’ll make sure it’s a quick death.”

“I’m not the one dying here.” He yelled as another fireball sprayed across the air wall around us. Ryan pointed in the direction it had come from. The fighting down the hall had come to a stop and our guys stood in the doorway waiting for us to come down.

“Nate, your allies are dead, it’s only you now. Tell me where Valence is.” Ant said.

“Valence isn’t your problem. I am.” He said stepping out of the shadows and his cover. There were five shots echoing in the basement, all of them hit the elemental vampire before he could launch another fireball. He crumpled as his brain splattered across the wall behind him. Three of those shots had been aimed for his head. It made me wonder who else had fired at center mass like Alex.

“How do you know I aimed for his chest?” Alex laughed.

“Because it’s a bigger target and is easier to hit.”

He looked at me and shrugged, I wasn’t wrong. “So why did someone else.”

Seraph chuckled, “A hit to a vampire heart is just as fatal.”

“In other words, it would drop him just the same as a bullet to the brain and it wouldn’t kill him.” I said for Alex’s reference.

“And he’d heal faster so we could interrogate him. Now we’ll have to wait until he heals brain matter and in the middle of the day that’s going to take a while.”

Ant and Ryan frowned. They both thought better of their shots. Jae on the other hand felt no guilt as he came down the stairs to join the rest of us on the landing.

I looked to the vampires standing in the hall. “Any other prisoners?”

Alec stepped through the mass of vampires. “The vampires are only incapacitated as Nate here is. No one else was with him. We didn’t kill anyone. Someone will know where Valence and the others are. Some might even know more about their plans, but I think Nate is the best bet.”

I nodded to the fallen vampire. “Get them back to the Night Life building. Take them to the resort. Lock Nate up separately. I want to talk to him when he wakes.”

Alec nodded, “As you command.”

I gave him a smile, “I’m going to check the rest of the house, make sure you scour the basement for any useful information. I want the building burnt to the ground when we are done.”

Ryan interrupted, “I’ll stay, I’ll make sure it looks like an accident.”

I nodded, “Thank you. That will help with the human authorities.”

“I know the drill.” He said with a grin, “Another reason Cari let me go. I’m actually helpful to you.”

“What am I? Chopped liver?” Ant asked.

“You are a vampire. I’m not.” Ryan teased.

Ant sighed and headed up stairs with me. I said to the bodyguards around me, “And after we check with the others upstairs I need to see my kids. But they can’t come home yet.”

Ant nodded. “I will arrange it.” And in the next shadow he was gone. It was just the four of us wrapping up the building search.

Alex took my hand now that the danger had passed. “I’m serious, I think I’ll leave this to you. I’m not a hero Nox. I’ll stay with the kids.”

“That’s your call Alex.”

He sighed, “I’m useless here.”

“You aren’t. But I don’t need you here to do the fighting. But I do need you when it comes to talking to Nate.”

Alex nodded, “I’ll do the talking bits, you do the fighting bits?”

I grinned, “Sounds good to me.”

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