My hands rubbed over Everly’s huge bump. Relief flooded me as I finally got her home. She didn’t want to leave Zoe, and I even had to get Doc Darnel in to tell her to go home. She was supposed to be on bed rest, but I knew she wouldn’t rest at all until she saw with her own eyes that Zoe was alive. Everly had been quiet most of the trip and I knew she was worried about Ava. We had scoured the entire city, including the tunnels, but nothing.
“Any news yet?” Everly asked as I leaned down to kiss her belly. I shake my head, and she pushes my face away, trying to tug the shirt she was wearing down.
I growl at her, and she sighs, but I can tell she was too tired to argue with me. She hated her body. She believed she looked stretched out and ugly, but I loved the stretch marks marking her skin. I loved each one, loved that she was the vessel that currently carried thirty little fingers, thirty little toes, and three extra beating hearts. Hearts that were mine to protect and love. Yet to me, none were more important than hers, the one that beat so they could.
“We’ll find them. The council …” My phone started ringing, cutting my words off. I reach for it. I had told everyone to not use the mind link. Everly didn’t need the extra stress, and I knew she would find no rest with everyone chatting away in our heads. Plus, now I had no idea who to trust.
Macey’s name pops up on the screen, and I glance at Everly as she rolls to reach for her water bottle. Sitting up, I grab it, handing it to her before kissing her head and walking out in case it was about Zoe.
“Hey, everything okay?”
“Ah, yeah, it’s fine but can you send someone out to the old mine road?” she asked, and I pulled the phone from my ear to make sure it was her. It was an odd request, and she sounded strange on the phone.
“I just drove past the hotel and reserve and saw a suspicious car head out that way. Just seemed odd,”
“Okay, I will send Derrick out that way with Dion. He is filling in tonight,” I tell her.
“Where are you anyway? Everly was expecting you back by now.”
“Just sorting a few things out at work. I will grab Chinese on the way home for everyone. Saves your dad’s from cooking,” Macey says.
“Okay, can you …”
“Yes, I will make sure to remember to get the prawn chips that the kids love,” Macey laughs.
“Great, see you soon,” I told her. We have a whole house full at the moment. Both mine : Everly’s father were with us, Macey and Taylor, plus Casey, and probably Zoe and Marcus soon, depending on how comfortable they are with going home. I texted Derrick and Dion, who said they would head out now before wandering into the kitchen where my father was preparing food for dinner.
“Macey is grabbing Chinese,” I tell him, and he sighs.
“Thank g*d! I was trying to think of what to make and was about to send John grocery shopping,” I tried to picture that, though I am sure he has shopped before but to shop for this many would be a nightmare.
“What’s up? Everly okay?”
“Yeah, just tired. I’ve been thinking of moving everyone to the main packhouse. It has been sitting empty for months and it has more space than here,’ I tell him.
“If it is too much, I can take John, Macey and Taylor with me.”
“No, it is fine. I think Everly likes everyone in one place at the moment, and I know she is worried about her father even though she won’t admit it,”
“Yeah, he feels guilty about Claire, Ava, and Zoe,” dad tells me.
“Where is he anyway?”
“I think he is in doing puzzles with the kids,” dad says with a shrug.
“I know you don’t like him, but he is her father, and we have all done some sh*t that wish we could take back, son,”
“I know, and I don’t hate him. I’m just worried that if something happens to him too that it might be Everly’s tipping point,”
“Ah,” he murmurs, turning the kettle on.
“Anyway, I was talking to John. He confessed something to me earlier,” Dad tells me, and I raise an eyebrow leaning on the counter.
“John banished Carter’s mother from the city. She didn’t leave because of Nixon.”
“What?” Dad nods.
“Yeah. Clarie threatened to leave him if he didn’t because they were close; Rachel was her cousin. So he banished her but when he banished her and ordered her out, she had Nixon’s daughter with her. John let Nixon believe she ran off with his daughter, but she didn’t. He said he had felt guilty about it, but he couldn’t find her once she was gone. He and Nixon had a rocky relationship as it was with business dealings falling through, so he didn’t tell him,” my father tells me. So Doc was right, there was more to the story.
“No, that is all,” he says when my phone rings. I pull it from my pocket and see it is Derrick.
I answer it quickly, turning and leaning against the counter. Yet it was Dion’s voice that came through the other end.
“We got him.”
“Micah,” Dion tells me just as I hear a crash in the background.
“I’ll be down soon,” I tell him, hanging up. “Hang on, Derrick wants to speak to you,” he says, and I waited for him to beg for his son. I hear the phone exchange hands.
“Pick up Marcus on the way,” Derrick says before hanging up. That wasn’t what I was expecting.
“I need to go,”
“I heard. I will keep an eye on Everly,” he said, and I nodded my head.
Walking down the hall, I stuck my head to see the kids playing with John.
“Can you come with me?” I ask him, and he nods, getting up from where he sat on the floor. “Everything okay?” he whispers, following me down the hall.
“Yeah. I need you to sit with Zoe. I need to take Marcus somewhere, and I know Marcus won’t leave her with anyone she doesn’t know.” John nods and doesn’t ask questions. He knows there is only one reason I would be pulling Marcus away from Zoe’s side.
I stopped by the hospital on the way to find Zoe asleep and Marcus sitting in a chair, staring at her. As I stepped inside the room, I motioned to him, and he got up from his seat.
Marcus looked exhausted. Huge bags hung under his eyes, and his hair looked like he had been running his fingers through it. John steps past him into the room.
“What’s going on?”
“I need you to come with me. John will wait with Zoe in case she wakes up,” I tell him, and he glances into the room at his mate and John, who had taken his seat by her bed.
“Is it Casey?” he asks worriedly, and I shake my head.
“Come on,” I tell him. Marcus sighs and ruins a hand down his face. “Valen, I’m not…”
“We found Micah,” I whispered to him, and the look on his face turned to feral rage. His eyes flicker, and he looks back in the room at John, who nods.
“She wakes. Tell her I went to have a shower,” Marcus tells him before pushing past me.
We left the hospital and headed to the police station. Walking out, we were buzzed in, and I could hear arguing and fighting out the back before we even stepped into where the cells were. Crashing of furniture came from one of the interrogation rooms, and I could see on the screen on the wall Derrick pummeling the living sh!t out of his son, who was bloody and trying to block his father’s punches.
Dion hits the intercom, and it buzzes inside, making Derrick rise. Micah was sobbing uncontrollably, and blood coated his swollen face. Marcus tried to rip the door open when he noticed the screen. Dion and I had to grab him. His entire body trembled with the urge to shift.
The door opens; Officer Derrick grabs the front of his son’s shirt, tosses Micah out the door, and Micah sprawls onto the floor in the center of the room. Tears trekked down Officer Derrick’s face, and his l!ps quivered.
“Dad, please,” Micah pleaded, and Marcus slammed against me, wanting to get to him.
“You are not my son; I raised no rap!st,” Derrick spat at him before looking at Marcus.
“He’s all yours,” Derrick says to Marcus before walking out. I nod to Dion to check on Derrick as he leaves out the doors. Micah backed up, and I let Marcus go, and Micah backed up, scrambling backwards as Marcus stripped his shirt off, stalking toward him.
“You can’t kill me. I am Casey’s father,” Micah said desperately.
“No, Casey’s mine,” Marcus snarled. He growled, the noise so feral and the crazed look on his face made the forsaken look tame before Marcus shifted him and attacked him.
I step back, sitting on the edge of the desk while Marcus ripped him apart limb for limb, coating the police station with his blood, and his screams echoed off the walls.