Broken Heart 07 Cross Your Heart

Broken Heart 07 Cross Your Heart by Michele Bardsley Read Free Book Online

Book: Broken Heart 07 Cross Your Heart by Michele Bardsley Read Free Book Online
Authors: Michele Bardsley
sidewalk and looked down the street. My friends Jessica and Patrick live just a couple houses away. Patrick O’Halloran was the twin of Lorcan, the vampire who, crazed with the Taint, had killed me and ten others. Patrick and Lorcan were also the sons of Ruadan, the very first of our kind. Lorcan and Patrick had founded the Consortium more than five hundred years ago. However, the current leader of the organization was Ivan Taganov. He didn’t spend a lot of time in Broken Heart, partially because the woman he’d nearly mated with had fallen in love with someone else, and… well, I think he just didn’t like Broken Heart. However, he had to drop in every now and again since the majority of the Consortium’s work was done here. He was a big man, a little overwhelming in both looks and nature. He seemed to have perfected the scowl, too.
    Jessica waved at me, then continued to survey a deep gouge in her lawn. Curiosity got the better of me. I joined her and we studied the odd slash in her otherwise perfect yard. “What happened?”
    “I don’t know,” said Jess. “It looks like a monster comma. I mean, did God reach down with a giant finger and make a punctuation mark in my grass?”
    “Perhaps Bryan… ?”
    “He’s in Stillwater. He’s got a girlfriend, and he wanted to spend the weekend with her.” Her tone held both worry and pride. Bryan knew how to keep our secrets, so the worry must be related to the fact her son was grown and dating. She was proud of him for going to college, but I got the impression she wasn’t quite ready to let go.
    Broken Heart had its own night school with one teacher, Eva O’Halloran. She was the town historian, and colibrarian of the substantial Consortium archives—duties that she shared with her husband, Lorcan (yes, that Lorcan). Since Broken Heart technically doesn’t exist, the Consortium set up an accredited online high school so children who graduate from their studies could attend college. Bryan had chosen to attend Oklahoma State University, OSU, and was working on a journalism degree.
    “Jenny wants a Vespa,” said Jessica. Her gaze narrowed. “Does that look Vespa-like to you? Like maybe a girl who didn’t know what the hell she was doing on a freaking Vespa spun through a perfectly landscaped yard?”
    I knew better than to answer such questions.
    “She’s fourteen,” I said. “Too young to drive around a scooter.”
    “She also has her stepfather wrapped around her pinky. And this is Broken Heart where rules for normal people don’t apply.” She rolled her eyes. Then she glanced at me. “Before I track down my family and solve the mystery of the lawn comma, tell me about the jaguar hottie.”
    I shouldn’t have been surprised that she already knew about Tez. The small-town grapevine worked even faster on a paranormal scale. I shrugged. “He was invited to town by the were-cat alpha.”
    “Why?”
    I blinked. I hadn’t even thought to ask Tez why he’d been invited. I had assumed he merely was interested in living among his own kind. But then, he hadn’t petitioned to live here. Hmm.
    “I don’t know. But Tez was in the woods behind my house. He saved me from an attacker.”
    “Attacker?” Jessica looked shocked. “Who the hell would want to hurt you?”
    I shook my head. “I don’t remember much.”
    “Wait. What were you doing out in the woods anyway?” She turned to fully face me, her expression filled with concern.
    I felt like I’d entered the conversation at the wrong end. I started over, explaining everything from the moment I received the odd little box, to the ghostly attack, to the female voice urging me to go to the woods—less than an hour before dawn. “I found her grave,” I summed up. “And dug her up.”
    Jessica’s mouth dropped open. “Holy freaking shit.”
    “The bones are old,” I said. “Damian thinks someone buried a dead relative in the woods. Or perhaps I uncovered a family cemetery.”
    “Is that what

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