Cataline Mercier Wintour had spent her whole life training to be an Olympic athlete, but when a tragic accident lands her and her party-oriented sister, Carson, across the country back in their old childhood home in Cape May, New Jersey. Cat can't help but give up on her dreams, but when she unexpectedly runs into striking, young, Frenchman Archer Corbett Henri Demonte and his group of strange friends her entire world is flipped upside down. Old secrets from the past start to unravel and when Cat becomes entrusted with the secrets of Archer and his friends things start to become a little complicated...


17. Chapter 17


    “Archer, what the hell?!” I shouted at him, pulling away from him. God, I wanted to throw up, I thought I was going to be sick. I was with Luc now, I was finally starting to move on from him, but at the same time that kiss.

    “I’m with Luc now, do you not understand that?” I snapped, turning away from him.

    “I do, but I had to see you Cat, it was driving me crazy not seeing you.” He said, reaching out and placing his hand on my shoulder, which I immediately shrugged off.

    “It was driving me crazy Archer, but I resisted because the thought of you made me want to punch a wall. I wanted you so badly that it physically hurt, but I moved on. I’m with Luc now, and if you can’t accept that, then you shouldn’t have kissed Grace without talking to me first.” I said bitterly.

    “Cat, I told you…” He started, but held out a hand to stop him.

    “You should’ve asked me if I was okay with it first. Now, I think it’s time for you to go.” I said coldly, stepping back and shutting the door.

    I heard his footsteps disappear into the bustling noise of the city’s streets before I sunk down against the door; my hand covered my mouth, stifling a sob. God, why? Why me? Why couldn’t he just let me move on? I thought to myself as tears began to flow from my eyes, making my body weaker and weaker as I watched the sun set in the sky and the full moon rise in the bleak January sky. I already knew I wasn’t going to go through the with the spell tonight. I couldn’t, not with everything going on. It simply, would’ve been too hard. By the time the full moon had finally reached its peak in the sky I had curled up on the floor, closing my eyes to prevent the room from spinning. I heard my phone ring, opening my eyes for only a brief moment to push the button to answer the call.

    “Hello?” I groaned, hugging my knees to my chest.

    “Hey Cat, its Luc. Are we still doing it tonight?” He asked, keeping his voice low.

    “I can barely move my body off of the foyer floor. I don’t think I could make it to the beach.” My voice was barely a whisper now as the pressure in my head increased, making me yelp in pain.

    “Hold on, I’ll be right there.” Luc said, his tone dripping with worry as the line clicked dead and I finally drifted unconscious. It didn’t feel like I had been out for long when Luc walked through the door, waking me up.

    “Cat hey, let’s get you over to the house.” He said softly. No! I thought to myself. Absolutely not! I wasn’t about to have to face Archer after he had just kissed me a few hours ago and I most definitely did not want to see Grace.

    “No,” I murmured, “it’s too soon.”

    “Okay, then at least let me take you to the hospital.” He sighed, picking me up. I nodded weakly, curling myself against him.




    My eyes opened slowly taking in the whiteness of the sterile hospital room. The beeping monitors made my head ache and if I wasn’t careful the IV that was in my hand would send a sharp pain up my arm. I hated hospitals, everything about them. I had always been sick as a child and no one was ever able to diagnose what it was, but it always seemed to get worse the longer I was away from the water, which was especially difficult during the school year. My parents eventually pulled me out of school because I missed too much and started homeschooling me where my P.E classes consisted of me doing laps in our backyard pool. It wasn’t until my freshman year they enrolled me in school again and I joined every water sport team my school had to offer, not to mention went to the beach or swimming with Carson every weekend. And then by the time I was out of the hospitals for my weird, magical, sickness, my parents were dead. I didn’t enjoy being in the hospital as a child, but I certainly didn’t ever think I’d be back so soon and to identify my parents’ corpses, no less.

    “Hey, you’re awake.” My eyes shifted from the ceiling to the person standing in front of my bed. Luc. I couldn’t help but feel a little sad that it was him instead of Archer, of course I enjoyed Luc’s company, but I didn’t love him the way I loved Archer. There was no spark.

    “Hi. Are the others here?” I said hoarsely as he handed me a cup of water.

    “MmHmm, everyone’s in the waiting room, including Grace.” I coughed loudly, choking on my water.

    “Grace is here?” I asked, shocked, as I wiped my mouth with my hospital blanket. Luc nodded, making a face that I couldn’t not laugh at.

    “I’m just as surprised as you are, honestly. I have no idea what she’s even doing here.”

We both turned as someone knocked on the door. He and I exchanged a look, I was only praying that it wasn’t Archer or Grace. A doctor stepped in and I let out a sigh of relief as I sunk back against my pillow.

    “Cat? My name is Dr. Langford.” He said as he flipped through the pages on the clipboard in his hands. He looked young for a doctor, he was cute and if I wasn’t currently involved in a love triangle with two immortal dead guys, an attractive, human, doctor might me nice. Dr. Langford shut the door softly and approached Luc and I, a tattoo on his wrist that matched the one on the back of Madelaine’s neck that I had only seen a few times, but enough to recognize that Dr. Langford wore the same one.

    “So Archer, tells me you’re the human that prefers dead guys.” He says jokingly, studying me as if I was some rare animal.

    “Is everyone in this goddamn city dead?” I groaned, covering my head with my pillow.

    “Not everyone, you and your family aren’t.” Luc joked, flashing a smile that quickly faded when I shot him a cold glare.

    “No, most people in Cape May are not renaître like your friends. However, I am not an immortal being, but I am a guérisseur, a healer,” Dr. Langford interjected, answering my rhetorical question, “but because you’re a human involved with the renaître, due to the circumstances of your condition you should only be treated by a doctor who specializes in renaître medicine, such as myself.”

    “So does JP just have connections like this all over Cape May?” I asked, my attention turning back to Luc.

    “Try all over the world. Not only is JP the head of Paris’s renaître, but due to an unfortunate recent events he has now also become the head of the East Coast renaître.”

    “What recent events?” I asked, suddenly intrigued in the conversation.

    “A recent emerge of some very powerful traître…” Dr. Langford began to explain before Luc shut him up by elbowing him in the side.

    “That’s enough out of you, Doc.” Luc hissed, an angry look flashing across his face. One I had never seen before and I knew well enough by now that when Luc or Archer had that look on their face it was best to stop talking, but seeing it on Luc’s face frightened me he was always so lighthearted and playful, I couldn’t imagine him ever getting angry with someone.

    “Based on what your friends have told me, Cat,” Dr. Langford stated, directing his attention back to me as if what Luc had said didn’t phase him in the slightest, “you need to complete the spell that allows the renaître to accept you, because until they do the longer you’re around them, the weaker you will become. Every full moon you don’t complete the spell, you will continue to grow weaker and weaker, until eventually your body will burn out and die.”

I stared at Dr. Langford. All I could see when I looked at him was someone’s who had an average life, but then everything changed. Sure, he wasn’t dead like Luc and Archer, but I could tell he would rather be living a normal life. I met his eyes and saw that we shared the same look, but his look was one of pity, one I had seen all too often. It was the same look that all the renaître gave me when they knew my story. I had seen that same look in Luc, Archer, and Madelaine’s eyes when they looked at me. All they saw was a girl who was deprived of her normal life and given a fate she never asked for. I knew my life sucked, but I was so sick of everyone treating me like some fragile flower that will break if the wind blows too hard.

“Can I have the room please?” I asked. Both Dr. Langford and Luc nodded, stepping out of the room, allowing me to finally rest. Or so I thought. Almost immediately after Dr. Langford and Luc left, Archer walked in, his hands shoved deep in his pockets and his gaze cast downward, as if he was afraid to look at me.

“Why are here? More importantly why is your girlfriend here?” I hissed, sitting up weakly.

“I’m here because I care about you, Cat and Grace is here because she was concerned.” He said deadpan, eyes still on the floor.

“Grace? Care about me?” I guffawed. I couldn’t help, but laugh bitterly, “I think you should leave.”

“I think you should break up with Luc.” Now his eyes met mine, but there was something about him that was different, more dangerous. His crooked smile, that I adored was gone and replaced by a hard, emotionless look in his eyes. It broke my heart.

“Why did you kiss me? You’re with Grace now.” I said, having to choke back tears as I uttered those last few words.

“He’s not right for you, you may love him, but you love him as a friend, a brother. You don’t love him the same way you love me.”

“Cocky much? I think you’re starting to cross a line, Archer,” I warned, my eyes narrowing, “my relationship with Luc is none of your business, considering you have a girlfriend.”

“I don’t want Grace, I want you.” His voice lowered, as his face darkened. I had never seen this side of Archer before and it scared me, terrified me.

“You should’ve thought about what you wanted, before you kissed Grace, without talking to me and clearly, Archer, whatever imprinting problem you were trying to fix with Grace clearly didn’t work if you two are together now.” I snapped.

“Why didn’t you complete the spell last night? Why would you risk it?” He asked, I could hear his voice breaking as concerned filled his voice, so this is what this was about. He was trying to pick a fight with me to make things easier on himself, to make me hate him.

“You want the truth? Fine. I did it because of you, I couldn’t stand to see you. To see Grace all over you. I knew the moment I was out of the picture, Grace would make her move and it obviously worked. Seeing you, it hurt too much. I couldn’t do it. I still can’t.” I was crying at this point, tears were falling from my eyes down my cheeks and I couldn’t stop them.

“You broke my heart, Archer, you broke my trust. I can’t forgive that.” I sobbed, turning onto my side, avoiding his eyes. Archer nodded solemnly and quietly left the room.

“You what?!” I heard Luc shout, followed by glass shattering and lots more shouting. I heard the door to my room slam and Luc stood in front of me, but when he saw me the angry look on his face faded and he sat down next to me. I placed my head on his shoulder and he combed his fingers through my tangled brown hair.

“So, Arch kissed you?” He asked calmly.

“Yeah, I was going to tell you. It just felt like laying in a hospital bed wasn’t exactly the best time.” I sighed.

“Cat, I think you and I both know this won’t work. You still have feelings for Archer, you know you do and judging by his behavior he still has feelings for you too. I have feelings for you Cat, but I can tell you don’t and you never will.”

“Luc...I don’t…I…” I sputtered, sitting up to look at him.

“Cat, I’ll be fine. Okay? You just focus on getting yourself better, so you can kick Grace’s ass.” He smiled, a real Luc smile, which made me feel a lot better.

“I love ya Kitty-Cat.” He said standing up.

“Love ya too, Luc.” I smiled softly and watched him leave.



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