Sins of the Lost

Sins of the Lost by Linda Poitevin Read Free Book Online

Book: Sins of the Lost by Linda Poitevin Read Free Book Online
Authors: Linda Poitevin
Fallen to tend the children then, and the rest of us can draw the host away from them. Keep them occupied. Besides, we’re not sure what the radiation levels in the city might do to the mothers. If they became ill, they might not be able to carry the babies to term.”
    “But the infants themselves won’t be harmed.” A statement, not a question, and one that dared contradiction.
    Samael shook his head. “Not as far as we can tell. We’ve harvested a few over the last week as test subjects. So far they seem to be thriving.”
    “And how long before the rest are born?”
    “Only a week.”
    Lucifer gritted his teeth at the placating tone of his aide’s voice and resisted the urge to throw something at him. Such as his desk. “Fine. Then that’s how long you have to find the Naphil’s sister.”
    Fleeting exasperation crossed Samael’s face, and then he nodded. “I’ll see that the trackers step up their effort.”
    “No. Not the trackers. You.”
    “Me? But I—”
    “The others don’t know how important this is. You do. The Nephilim need a leader. They need this child I will father. If their place is as ready as you claim, then you’re free to pursue this for me. Find the Naphil’s sister, Samael. And don’t come back until you do.”

Chapter 10
    Verchiel found the One seated beneath an arbor in the rose garden, eyes closed, so still that she might have been one with the wood. Loath to disturb her, Verchiel paused, studying the lines in the beloved face. Lines she was certain hadn’t been there before. Her heart squeezed in on itself.
She looks so . . . fragile
.
    Her hesitation deepened. Perhaps she should leave, come back later.
    “Come,” her Creator said. “Sit with me.”
    “If I’m disturbing you . . .”
    A moment’s silence, then the One’s eyes opened, and some of the lines smoothed away from her forehead. She patted the bench beside her. “Not at all. I was just containing my son’s folly. Again.”
    Verchiel crossed the sweep of lawn and settled on the seat. “How is that coming?”
    “It isn’t. Every time I think I have it under control, it finds another escape. I’m not sure how much more the planet can take without self-destructing.”
    “And you? How much more can you take?”
    “A good question.” The One pulled a spray of roses toward her, inhaling deeply. “I suppose as much as I must. But we’re not here to talk about me.”
    Guilt ensnared Verchiel’s voice and held it captive. It was true. She had come in search of the Creator for other reasons. More selfish ones.
    The Creator’s hand covered her own in her lap and squeezed. “Tell me.”
    “It’s just—” She blinked away the sheen of moisture blurring the garden. “You have always . . . been. The very idea you can cease to do so terrifies me.”
    The One’s hand pressed hers. “Not cease, Verchiel. Alter. I’ll still be here, just not like this.”
    “But this—this is how we know you, One, and I don’t know how to go on without that.” Verchiel turned her hand over in the One’s until their fingers linked. “Your counsel, your guidance, your very presence . . .”
    “All of that will still be yours. You’ll just have to pay closer attention. I’ll still be a part of you, as all mothers remain a part of their children. My voice will be in yours if you choose to hear it. My counsel and guidance in your heart if you choose to heed them.”
    A tear spilled over onto Verchiel’s cheek. With a rueful sigh, the One reached out her free hand to wipe it away.
    “Close your eyes,” she commanded.
    Verchiel did.
    “Now breathe.”
    She inhaled.
    “Do you smell the roses? The grass and trees and a thousand other scents that mingle with them?”
    A nod.
    “Those are
my
scents, Verchiel. The scents of my skin, my breath, my very essence. Every breath you take, every inhale, every exhale—that is me. The sun warming your skin and the breeze playing with your hair—those are me, too.

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