Sneak Peek – Book 2

It was a short jump to scramble onto the side of the overturned vehicle and peer through the broken windows. A father with three kids in the back, one close to her age. Daddy was unconscious along with the girl closest to her. There was a boy in the far seat, and a little girl around four or five in the back seat who was sobbing. “Hey,” Jo snapped at the teenage boy. “Can you move?” He gave himself a shake, turning his head to look up at her. He was having trouble focusing his eyes, but she couldn’t tell if it was a concussion or just shock – probably a combination of both. “Can you move?” More force was put behind her voice, one which broached no argument.

The boy gave a small nod, focusing his efforts on her. Oh, good, it appeared that tone actually worked on teenage boys. Good to know. She made a mental note to thank Charles later. “We need to get all of you out of here. Can you catch your sister?” She didn’t wait for him to answer but instead leaned in through the remains of the window towards the seat belt.

The fighting continued behind her, but she only kept half her attention on that. She could hear people on the street running for cover, but with this family stuck in their minivan, they were still in danger. Laying flat on her stomach, she was half through the window just to reach the release for the seat belt. A bit of a struggle, but the thing finally gave way, and the ten year old unconscious girl slipped free and into her brother’s waiting arms. He gave Jo a nod, letting her know he had her.

“I can’t reach the little one in the back,” she told him. “You have to get them ou-” She didn’t have a chance to finish the rest of that sentence as the back of her uniform jacket was grabbed, and she was hauled into the air. For a brief moment, she hoped it was one of her bodyguards, trying to drag her to safety.

No such luck.

The man continued to grip the back of her jacket, holding her as if she were a kitten by the scuff as he studied her quietly. He was even larger when this close, though that could be a product of how he was holding her. His features were wide and blunted, his complexion pale. Somehow, he had managed to retain his sunglasses through all the devastation he had wreaked.

Behind him, Jo could see the destruction done to the SUV. Samson was laying across the front, out cold. Her arm was twisted at an unnatural angle – that was going to hurt when she woke up. Dirk was just barely visible, but he was moving, which meant conscious.

Which meant she wasn’t entirely alone in this. Small consolation.

Her gaze fixed to her captor’s shaded one. “Are you Nasaru?” she asked softly, continuing to dangle there. With his strength, it seemed a fair assumption. All of the Nasaru had powers – that would explain so much of what this man had just done, but if that were the case, shouldn’t he be on the same side as her? Shouldn’t he be helping?

Instead of answering her, however, the man turned and began to walk away with her.

Uh, no.

She slapped one hand sharply against his forearm, her mind pushing the thought of being stabbed directly into his arm. She had just experienced this very thing a couple of months before, and she drew from that memory, amplifying and centralizing the pain of steel sinking into flesh, using her own anger to fuel the illusion.

He didn’t so much as flinch.

Well, hell.

Her hands went straight up into the air as if in surrender, and she slipped entirely free from her uniform jacket. The moment her feet touched ground, she launched herself into a full sprint. Her speed was the one thing she hoped she had on this big bad, and seeing how quickly he took out not one but two trained bodyguards, she knew she didn’t stand a snowball’s chance if she tried to fight him directly, especially since he shrugged off her powers without so much as a grimace.

Still unsure of where she was going, she felt fingers curl into her hair a split second before she was yanked off of her feet. A scream of pain escaped before she could clamp down on it. Both of her hands clamped down on the man’s wrist as he lifted her by her hair, but this time she managed to muffle her scream behind clenched teeth.

He didn’t otherwise hurt her, however. He simply lifted her by her hair, which hurt, yes, but there was no other violence. With her dangling in the air, he started walking off towards one of the many alleys. She may not be screaming, but she couldn’t bite back as she cursed him in every language she knew which, all told, was quite a few.

Legs flailing, she managed to turn herself about to face him. She used her hands already on his wrist to haul herself upwards, kicking her leg up to wrap it about his arm. He seemed unphased, holding her out at full arm’s length as he trudged ever forward. “Hey! Hey, jerk-face! Let. Me. Go!” One leg wrapped about his bicep, her hands clasping his wrist, it gave her a bit of leverage for when she drew her other foot back and slammed it into the man’s face over and over again.

His head snapped back, but he didn’t lose his grip or slow his stride. She did manage to break his sunglasses, however.

And that was telling in and of itself. His eyes were solid black orbs, glistening like wet obsidian.

Oh good. A demon. They had black eyes, right?

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