Delude

Casey just wanted to have a normal life. She would only be so lucky. She despises school, especially after she meets Evan Fynn. In seconds, he's undone everything she's worked hard to maintain; he's taken everyone from her, filled their minds with lies to drive them away. She is desperate to find out why, even if the truth is more terrifying than she expected.

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26. Home.

The familiar scent of laundry detergent stirred emotions in me as I gripped consciousness. I didn’t want to get up, thinking it was all a trick. They had somehow accessed my brain, pulled out the memories, and were going to use them against me.

“Wake up,” a voice said soothingly. Someone touched my shoulder. “You’re home, Casey. You and your mother are safe. It’s over.”

“No,” I said, shaking my head. “I’m still there. Nixon is one of them and Noah is dead.”

A soft chuckle rippled through the air and warm lips brushed the shell of my ear tenderly. “Open your eyes, darling.”

“You’re not real,” I whispered, my voice cracking. “You’re dead.”

Then I started to cry.

His body slid next to mine, his arms going around my middle. He tangled his fingers in my hair and brought my head against his chest, and pressed his chin into the top of my head.

“It’s okay,” he said. “I’m not dead and Nixon’s here.”

My eyes opened and I looked into his honey eyes. I reached up and touched his face, his hair, and his lips. He smiled against my finger.

“I understand that Nixon is important,” he said, nodding. He bent down and pressed his lips to mine, a smirk on his face as he pulled back. “But you won’t let him do that anymore, will you?”

“No,” I said, my cheeks reddening.

“Would you like to see him?” Noah asked politely.

I nodded as I sat up, my legs dangling over the bed. I stared around and stood up, turning to face Noah, who was standing by the door. He looked a little worried when I came over to him, but relaxed when I wrapped my arms around his neck and brought his head down until my lips were close to his ear.

“Thank you,” I said.

His arms went around my back and he moved his mouth to my neck, using his tongue and teeth on the skin there. I squeezed my eyes shut and tangled my fingers in his white hair, tugging until he growled softly.

Noah’s hands slipped around my waist, his fingers brushing my bare stomach as he lifted my shoulder. I started to become lightheaded at the touch, but I didn’t care. Part of me wanted to be closer to him than I’d been with anyone else, and the other part was trying to pull me away from him all at once.

“I forgot what we were supposed to be doing.” He smiled, leaning his forehead against mine. He twirled a piece of my hair in between his fingers, waiting for me to answer.

“You said Nixon was here,” I reminded him. Then I smirked. “We can continue this later, if you want.”

He fixed me with a look that said exactly what I was thinking as we headed out into the hallway and downstairs to find Nixon lounging on the couch, a very surprised expression on his face when he saw us.

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