Disclaimers: See what I said in Chapter Three's disclaimers.

Grovel: Ok….I'm sooooooo sorry about how long this has taken. First, I was so sick that I thought the creature from "Alien" was growing inside me. THEN, my beta was experiencing technical difficulties with her computer. Lastly, the dirty four letter word…work. I want to thank everyone who wrote to me during the time I was MIA. I wanted to post once a week, buuuuuut, I think bi-weekly is more realistic at this point. Oh, plus I'm playing "auntie maddy" for a lil while. So please excuse any postings smeared with jelly…

OK. Here is how to pronounce some of the names included in this chapter. Memorize these, kids. You'll see them again. And there's a test at the end of each chapter. HA HA HA!

Aislinn (Ash-leen)

Eavan (EEV-an)

Ainbthine (AN-fan)

Athair – Father- (ah-hair)

Mathair – Mother- (moh-hair)

Dalaigh (day-lee)

Seamus (SHAY-mas)


by Tara Cullen

Chapter Four

"Seamus…who's that?"

"That's Ainbthine's youngest sister, Eavan. Her name is Aislinn."

"She's very pretty."

"Yes. Yes she is. But not as pretty as Ainbthine."

"I think she's more pretty, Seamus. Can I marry her like you're going to marry Ainbthine?"

"No, Eavan. You cannot. It's not allowed. Besides, athair will find you a suitable husband when you're old enough."

But I want her. She is so beautiful. Her eyes are the color of the rolling hills that cover the lands.

"When will athair make me marry, Seamus?"

"You're only ten years of age, Eavan. You still have plenty of time to worry about that. Come, let's join the rest of the family and I'll introduce you to Aislinn. You two may be good friends…like sisters. She's the same age as you."

Seamus takes my hand as we walk across the crowded room. The two families are celebrating the upcoming marriage between my older brother Seamus, and Ainbthine. We're getting closer to Aislinn and her family. Why am I so nervous? Will she like me? Will she want to play with me?

Seamus and I walk up to Ainbthine and Aislinn. Ainbthine is talking with my mathair, and Aislinn is looking at her shoes and playing with her dress. Her straw colored hair is in long braids. My hair is in braids, too!

"Aislinn. This is my sister Eavan. Eavan, this is Aislinn."

She's looking up at me…

Her eyes look even more green up close!

"Um, hello. Nice to meet you. Do you like to play with dolls?"

Dolls? "Uh-uh. I like to play outside in the trees and with horses."

"Oh. My sister Ainbthine doesn't like me to play outside and get dirty. She says I'm supposed to act like the young lady that I am."

"Well, where's the fun in that? What does your mathair say? Doesn't she let you play outside?"

Aislinn looks down at the floor again. What did I say?

"Um, Aislinn? Did I say something wrong?"

Oh. Those eyes. So full of hurt.

"I don't have a mathair. She died a few years ago. Ainbthine is like my mathair now."

"I'm sorry, Aislinn."

"It's alright. So, Eavan, you want to go and play?" Wow. I like the way my name sounds when she says it.

I tell Seamus that we're going to play. I'm not sure if he heard me, being he was so preoccupied with watching Ainbthine's every movement. Aislinn starts to walk towards the back of the large room that the party is being held in. I follow her, but then I realize we're heading to the back of the home. Taking Aislinn by the hand, I stop her progress down the hall and sneak us around and through the groups of adults that are crowding the room. I look over my shoulder and smile at Aislinn, who has a confused look on her face. She opens her mouth to say something when she realizes where I'm leading us. Quieting her with my index finger over her lips, I continue to lead us out the front door and to the outside. The "front yard" is covered in trampled grass and gravel from the carriages and horses. We can still hear the party going on inside as I walk to the stables with Aislinn's hand still in mine.

"Eavan, where we are going? If you're taking me to the stables, I'm not allowed to go in there unless I ask Ainbthine."

Rolling my eyes at her, I inform Aislinn that what Ainbthine doesn't know won't hurt her. Aislinn stops walking and in turn stops me because of our linked hands. She looks down at the ground and then looks up at me from behind her wispy blonde bangs. I think I just saw a glimmer of mischief in those viridian eyes and a shy smile form on her lips. As I smile back at her, we resume our trek towards the stables, but now with me being lead by her.

She leads us into her family's stables that house their horses used for riding and "show". Aislinn tells me that the work horses have their own stable closer to the fields. The stable has six stalls on either side of the middle hall. Oil lanterns hang on every other post to light the way through the dark, thatch roofed stable. Nickering and the clomping of hooves against wood can be heard from behind closed, tall stall doors. She stops us in front of the fifth stall down on the left. A wide smile crosses her face that takes my breath away.

"This is my horse. His name is Brilliant. You wanna see him?"

I feel my head nod wildly up and down on its own. I'm still so blinded by her smile that she could ask me to do anything and I will say "yes" to it. Releasing my hand, which I forgot she was still holding, she reaches up to work the latch loose on the stall door. She tells me to "wait here" while she makes sure Brilliant is in a good mood. Suddenly, I'm tugged into the stall and come almost face to face with a golden horse. Brilliant seems to be staring me down. Aislinn takes my hand as Brilliant smells me from head to toe, and then back up again. When he reaches my head for the second time, he snorts out through his nose causing my brown bangs to fly up, and stay up. This causes Aislinn to start laughing until she snorts. Then I start laughing. We fall into each other as our laughter dies down to fits of giggles. Brilliant seems to want in on the fun and takes turns nuzzling us with his soft, velvety nose. I ask Aislinn for permission to pet her horse.

"Sure you can, Eavan. He likes you. And he doesn't like many people. Do you know what that means?"

Stroking the soft hairs on Brilliant's nose, I tell her I have no idea what that means.

"Well, that means I can like you, too."

And I like you, too Ash.


Stupid piece of shit! I hate alarm clocks, with a passion. I have three of them located in strategic places around my room so I can wake up for work. Emma says the racket that all my alarms make could wake the dead. I beg to differ.

Stretching across my bed, my mind remembers the dream I just woke from. It was about the first time I met Ash. And I was hooked from the get go. The smell of hay, horses and Ash still linger in my hazy mind. It's been almost a week since I talked to Josh about the intensity of my dreams. He told me a few days ago that the psyches haven't found out anything yet, but are keeping an eye out for me. I know she'shere somewhere.



Turning off that alarm requires me to actually get up out of bed. And I turn it off with a SMACK. Me and all of my sleep induced attractiveness head to the bathroom. A flush of the toilet and a splash of cold water to the face later, I go back to my room to throw on a pair of sweatpants and t-shirt. I like to sleep in the nude, for the most part. I could be found wearing boxers every once in a while, but not often. That usually occurs when I'm so tired I forget I'm even wearing the things.

"I don't want anybody else….when I think about you I touch myself…"SMACK

That was the last of the alarms and I turn it off on my way downstairs where I can smell the coffee waiting for me. I loved the invention of the automatic coffee maker with built in timer so I can set it to brew and have it ready and waiting for me. My other coffee maker is Emma. Speaking of Emma, she didn't stay over with me for the past few nights. After getting home from O'Reilly's last Monday, Emma proceeded to instigate, what I like to call, mad monkey sex. Thankfully, I heal very quickly. Otherwise I would still be walking around like I rode a horse from California to North Carolina, non-stop. Emma didn't fair as well as I did though. She told me the other day that she wanted to go home because A) she was sore as hell and couldn't take any more sex for a while and had to remove herself from the temptation. Hee hee. And B) she was mad as hell at me for taking unnecessary risks while at work. I can't seem to convince her that I don't look for the trouble, the trouble finds me. How was I supposed to know that there was a guy at that house Monday morning with a gun? She slapped me when I said that I must have forgot to pay the cable bill cuz my ESP was disconnected. She left to go home shortly after that.


The shift has gone okay so far. One of the things I like about working nights is the lack of traffic on the roads. I don't have road rage, but damn, they'll give a license to any idiot with a pulse. It happens that those are the idiots in the wrecks that occur at night. The weather has dried up a bit, but it's still cold. Any water or dampness on the ground is turning into ice, compliments of Mother Nature reminding us that it is still only mid-March.

It's 0312 in the morning now and we have already worked a few fender benders. Em has been, well, not really giving me the cold shoulder, but damn close to it. I can see her out of the corner of my eye from where I'm sitting now at the nurse's station. She's watching me and my every movement. But of course, when I look up, she turns away and tries to look busy. I look to Susan standing at the counter above me writing in a patient chart. I raise my eyebrow, she grins and shrugs, and we both go back to our charting. I figured I would take this time to catch up on my paper work while Em plays her game. What ever it happens to be. Tom is sitting at the other end of the nurse's station on the phone. Little does he know I can hear him and his wife talking dirty to each other. Oooooo…that was a good one. I can't stifle the giggle at hearing that his wife likes it when he dresses like a cowboy. Tom looks up at me with his dark eyes. Just then, our pagers tone out a call. Our radios crackle to life with the information about our next destination. Tom says his goodbyes to Rita, his wife and stands to his full height of 5'11. He runs his hands through his sandy colored curly hair. He has a slight blush on his cheeks. I slap him in his gut.

"Come on cowboy. Let's git 'er done." That got him.

"How did you…..?"

"How did I do what, Tom?" I throw in the puppy dog, innocent look to boot.

"Never mind. Let's go." Man, he's so easy to pick on.


The dispatcher informs us that we are to respond to a fire in the old warehouse district on the other side of the city. We're to provide assistance to the other EMS units that are already on the scene. The district is mostly abandoned warehouses and office buildings that once were the main economic providers for the city. The shells of a few factories are also in the mix of the district. This area is infamous for its homeless population now. And every once in a while, EMS gets toned out to assist PD and the fire department when they do their sweeps through the district and try to "clean out" the buildings of their uninvited occupants. The owners of the buildings request this "cleaning" every once in a while; especially in the winter months when people are looking for shelter from the cold and snow. I don't understand it. Some of the owners of the property don't live anywhere near this city, let alone in the same damn state. Shit, I heard some British guy owns the torn up factory that kids use to hold raves in. The buildings just sit there. Why can't they sell them to the city or a private party that could turn all of this into real shelters, or apartments, or something better than what it is. If the homeless are a problem, fix the fucking homeless problem. Give them a damn home! Chances are the fire we're responding to is the result of a fire made by a few of the homeless trying to stay warm or cook.

As we approach the district, I can see the orange glow over the roof tops of other buildings. Smoke can be smelt almost all over the city, but it brings tears to our eyes as we get closer. An acrid taste forms in my mouth. A staging officer directs us where to park our ambulance so that it isn't in the way of the fire apparatus but we can still get out if we have to take off in a hurry. Tom calls dispatch on the radio and tells them we are on scene and in the staging area. One way to describe the scene around us; organized chaos. I run to the side of the truck to the compartment behind the passenger door to get out my turnout gear. While we don our gear, I take stock as to what all is going on. Not only am I a paramedic, but also a trained firefighter. I have worked both EMS and fire in different cities that I have lived in. I can see several fire engines pulled up with hoses laid to and from hydrants. Hoses are crisscrossed all over the ground; some are hand lines that are manned by firefighters themselves, others are linked up to water "guns" located on the decks of the trucks and aiming at the building. Silhouettes of tower ladders and straight ladders, or sticks, can be seen against the fiery backdrop. The tower ladders have platforms at the tops of them where firefighters can stand and use hoses from the platform and shoot the flames from above and the sides.

It appears to be an abandoned warehouse on fire. It has four stories, and flames are licking the sky through the roof top. They call fire the dragon. Fire does have a life. If you don't respect it, or understand it, that's when people are killed. Fire's main desire is to feed. It wants oxygen and will destroy anything in its path to quench its hunger. I can understand this desire. Fiery tendrils reach out from melted and broken out windows from all sides of the quickly deteriorating building. I can see an officer for Tower Ladder 96, Lt. Terry Hogan, who I know from work and O'Reilly's, standing by his truck. Terry is a hulk of a man standing at easily 6'2, with a huge build. He competes in amateur body building competitions throughout the year. Why not? He has the fire house gym to work out in when he's on and off duty. He has the grayest eyes, the deepest voice, and is more flaming than the warehouse currently being burned to the ground. I make sure Tom knows where I'll be at, and walk up to Terry while he is barking and receiving orders on his radio. When I see him done with his last radio transmission, I announce my presence at his side with a loud "FUBAR!" Terry glares down at me and snarls.

"About time you got here Evan. I was starting to worry that my favorite groupie wasn't going to show up." Terry's voice is raspy and hoarse from smoke and having to yell and talk over the sounds of truck and pump engines.

"I'll let Tom know you're looking for him."

"Cute, Ev."

"I know I am. Thanks. What the hell happened here? Any ideas?" Looking at how rapidly the fire was traveling through the building, I'm wondering if this was actually accidental or not.

"Naw. No clues yet. But according to the guys that were on scene first, the fire spread rapidly not only across the building, but vertically also. We think it started on the second floor from the early reports and the damage patterns so far." Ok, I still got the touch.

"Anybody in the building? Was a search done?"

"I was told the first company did a search and found only a few bums still inside. A lot of people were coming out of the building as additional units were arriving."

"Huh. Thanks Terry."

Something doesn't seem right to me. That whole "gut instinct" thing is starting to kick in. Weaving my way between firefighters and hopping over hoses, I now find myself getting drawn closer to the building and flames. The heat is getting more intense and ashes and embers are being blown into my eyes by the winds created by the fire's heat. What wasthat? Closing my eyes, I tune out the yelling, the engine rumbling, and the roar of the fire. Cocking my head to the side, I hear the sound again. Oh shit! There's someone inthere!

Turning away from the fire, I start waving my arms to get Terry's attention. A loud moan and cracking sound is heard from behind me, and then a CRASH. I can feel myself being pushed to the ground while debris and dust surround me and others that were near me. Now we can hear the screams of someone from inside the heap that was once an exterior wall and part of the second floor. As I get up from the ground, I notice no one is going in after the victim. I grab the axe the dazed probie kneeling on the ground is gripping and turn and run towards the screams. The rubble and iron beams are hot to the touch even through my gloves. I can see the fire from inside the building creeping closer to the pile of concrete and steel that I am presently climbing over and through. I can hear yelling from behind me but ignore it. The screams get louder the deeper I go into the pile. Now I can smell it. Fear. Overwhelming, paralyzing fear. And blood. These two things are like homing beacons to me when finding victims. If not one or the other, it's both. I call out several times and stand still waiting for a response to help pin point the location of the victim. Muffling and whimpering can be heard off to my right, from under a steel girder. Great. I crawl up under the girder and shine the beam of light from the flashlight on my helmet in the area of the sounds. With my gloved hands, I start digging the sand-like and rocky debris away from the person I can smell under there. Suddenly, wiggling fingers appear and start grabbing for the cuffs of my turnout coat. The voice of a woman pleading exits the hole I was trying to dig.



The next noises to be heard are not from the woman but from above and around me. Hissing, popping, and creaking. Oh shit. NOT good. I ask the woman again if she can move. She tells me "no" and that she can't move her legs. While talking to the woman, I managed to make the hole bigger and I am able to see what the problem is. Part of the girder is lying on a wood pallet, which is lying on top of this woman's legs. The hole is large enough now for the woman to crawl through, but first I need to get her unpinned. The woman starts to frantically grab at me as I crawl backwards out of the hole and away from her. Her face is gray and her tears are leaving streaks across her face, leaving paths of clean, pale skin behind. Bloodshot, bulging eyes pierce straight through me.



Terrified eyes look at me blankly. I crawl back in with my upper body sharing the close, coffin like space with her. I'm close enough now that I don't have to shout over the chaos that surrounds us outside our cave. Lowering my voice almost to a whisper, but loud enough for her to hear me, I try to reassure the woman it's going to be OK.

"Ma'am, what's your name? I'm Evan."

"Carol. My name is Carol."

Taking her hand between my gloved ones, I maintain eye contact with Carol to make sure she is "with me" while I give her the directions I need her to follow to make sure we both get out of here. When I ask her if she understands what I told her to do, she sobs and nods her head.

"Ok, Carol. Just do what I say, when I say it, and we'll be outta here in no time. I need you to let go of me so I can do what I have to do. I won't leave you alone. No matter what." Unblinkingly, I say this last part. I get another nod from her and she releases my hand. Sliding back out of the hole, I feel the temperature rising around us. Looking up, I notice the rest of the second floor and part of the third floor are threatening to fall on us. Shouting can be heard behind me and streams of water shoot at the flames climbing up and over the edge of debris about 10 feet from where Carol is trapped. Now or never Ev. I slam the head of the axe under the steel beam and use a chunk of concrete as leverage. I yell to Carol to get ready and I hear her "ok" from inside the hole. I count to three and place all my weight onto the handle of the axe. The steel and wood creak from the strain of being "jacked up" by my make shift lever. Through gritted teeth, I tell Carol "NOW" and I see her hands grabbing, trying to make purchase on the loose debris. The flames are getting closer and are starting to ride up and over the pile. Fuck this! Dropping the axe, I grab directly onto the girder and lift. My rage boils over and the beast comes alive from inside me. The beam lifts higher now than it did before and Carol grabs my legs to pull herself out of the hole. After glancing down quickly to make sure she is clear of the beam, I drop it with a roar from my lungs. The power of the beast is pulsating through my veins. The smell of her fear and blood feeds my desire and instinct to survive. Scooping Carol up into my arms, I cradle her face and body into my chest to protect her from the flames that have now given chase to us as I run out and away from the building which has started collapsing. I snap my head forward to bring the face shield down on my helmet to hide my features. I don't need to scare the poor woman to death seeing me "vamped out" after going through all of that. Another firefighter runs up and relieves me of Carol and takes her to a stretcher and EMS crew standing near by. As soon as I see Carol being treated by the EMS crew, I drop to my hands and knees. Others around me must have taken this move as a show of me being injured or hurt. They swarm like bees to damn honey and ask me "what's wrong" and "where do you hurt?" I don't hurt. But lord knows I'll hurt one of them. My senses are on overload and I'm having a tough time reigning myself in. I yell "don't touch me" to Tom, who is kneeling beside me trying to check me for injuries.

"Dammit Tom! I'm fine! Just let me catch my fucking breath!"

Well, Tom took this as me being in respiratory distress and I now have an oxygen mask being shoved in my face. Jesus H Christ!

"LEAVE ME ALONE!" Ok, I think I scared them all. I just growled. Tom has rolled back onto his ass and is now staring at me with his eyes and mouth wide open. I apologize and tell them all that the smoke is making me hoarse and my voice rough. They buy this excuse and back off a bit, giving me chance now to calm down. I thank Terry for the bottle of water that I am presently drinking down. Flipping off my helmet, I pour the rest of the water from the bottle over my head and face. Running my now ungloved hands over my face, I feel "human" again. I thank Tom as he helps me up off the ground and steers me towards our truck. I can feel pats on my back and hear "atta boys" thrown in my direction along the way. Tom opens the back doors of the ambulance as I strip off my turnout coat. No sooner does my ass hit the floor of the truck to sit down, I am blinded by a bright light and faced with a microphone with a WTXP logo on the side of it.

"This is Katie Smith from WTXP and I'm here with the paramedic who risked her life to save a woman from certain death in the fire here at the old Feldmen Fabrics Warehouse. We caught the amazing rescue in its entirety and are about to speak with the hero."

No fucking way this is happening. All I can do is watch Barbie talk to the camera and then spin around and look at me expectantly. I'm going to get so ragged on about this.

"What is your name and how do you feel?"

"Um, I'm Evan Dalaigh… and I feel like shit?" Oops, you can't say that on live TV, can you?

That ended that interview real quick.


The EMS shift supervisor ordered my, as he put it, "happy ass" to the E/R for an evaluation. So, I got a chauffeured ride by my driver Tom, with my "happy ass" lounging on the stretcher in the back of the truck. I called Josh while we were on the way to let him know I was a quart or two low. He's going to meet me in the E/R when we get there. Tom opens the side door of the patient compartment and helps me out of the back. He informs me that I really do look like shit, and I thank him with a hand gesture. As we enter the E/R, a round of applause erupts and few hoots are called out. I got a standing ovation from the 3rd shift E/R staff, and a glare from a certain nurse. Oh shit. Emma. Susan heads Emma off at the pass and guides me to a private exam room. Josh is coming up behind her with his bucket of lab supplies. Susan orders Josh to draw bloods on me to check for carbon monoxide levels due to my prolonged exposure to smoke without protection. Susan again runs interference and closes the door before Emma can enter the exam room. Josh locks the door to the room and pulls two bags from the bottom of his bucket. He turns his back and readies his equipment while I devour the contents of both bags like someone who has been in the desert for a week without water. When I tell him I'm done, he turns around and stares at me. He points to his mouth and then at me.

"Um, Ev…you, ah, got some on your, uh, face there."

Wiping my mouth off with my shirt, I thank him. Susan walks in just as Josh was drawing "my" blood. He tells her he'll send the results up as soon as he's done with the tests and leaves the room…running. I'm soooo in trouble. Susan stands in front of me with her arms crossed over her chest and makes me feel like a three year old. Sitting on the high gurney, I swing my legs and fidget, like a three year old. A low purr can be heard from where she is standing. I don't even have to look at her.

"Evan. What the hell were you thinking? I thought I was going to have to sedate Emma with a tranquilizer dart. Did you know that the stunt you pulled was aired live?"

"Um, no." Boy, my feet are sure far from the floor. Am I really that short?

"Evan, are you listening to me? Emma is pissed. No, she's furious with you. I have her calmed down now, but she wants to see you. I told her she can't kill you until I discharged you from my care."

"Gee thanks, Susan. Mighty swell of ya."

Susan just shakes her head and informs me she's sending Emma in. The soft click of the door closing behind Susan is immediately followed by a whoosh and SLAM. Medical supplies scatter on the floor from the shelves that the door slammed into. And then the calm before the storm enters. Emma is carrying a plastic basin of soapy water and few washcloths. She sets the pan next to me on the gurney, soaks a washcloth and rings it out. I mean really rings it out. Her knuckles are white. My eyes track her every movement. She brings the washcloth to my face and I flinch. Did she just smirk evilly? With surprisingly gentle ministrations and in absolute silence, she proceeds to clean my face. A couple washcloths later, she starts on my hands. She has yet to make eye contact with me or say one word. When done, she empties the basin in the sink and drops the dirty rags in the linen hamper in the corner of the room. Emma still has her back to me when she finally speaks. Her voice is low, just above a whisper.

"I was so scared…watching you run towards the fire, and then watching the fire and building collapse around you. I thought I would die." Emma turns to face me with her tear streaked face and bloodshot hazel eyes. Chanting "why" softly, she comes to stand in front of me between my knees. All I can think of doing is wrapping my arms around her and comfort her with whispered words in her ear. When the crying and the wracking of her body stopped, she quietly asks again.

"Why, Evan? Why did you do it? Why do you keep doing things like this? I don't understand…"

Sighing, I try to think of what to say. How do I explain why I do what I do? How do I explain that I don't want to see other people hurt or killed because of their mortality and physical weakness. Other than being engulfed in fire or finding a large wood splinter sticking out of my chest, I don't have to worry about my life ending tragically like it would for the others I work with. I take the risks so they don't have to. So they don't have to leave wives, husbands, and children behind.

"I'm good at what I do, Em. I need to do it. I can't explain it. I don't think about the situation or worry about me. I worry about someone else with a family getting hurt."

Emma forcibly pushes back away from me. Her eyes are rounds like saucers staring at me. She starts to raise her voice and she seems to get louder with every sentence.

"And what the fuck am I, Evan? What am I to you? I love you Evan! And you tear me apart every time you pull one of your crazy stunts like tonight. Watching you on TV was the longest damn five minutes of my life!" Wow, it was under five minutes in the fire with Carol. It felt longer than that. Hearing my name shouted at my face brings my attention back to the now bright red Emma before me.

"What do you want me to say Emma? You knew what I did and how I was before we even became friends! What did you expect from me? To suddenly change overnight for you? To change what I am and what I have been doing for so many years that it's instinct…second nature to me? I can't Emma, and I won't! Too many lives would be lost if I stopped what I do. But you have to believe me, I won't get hurt like some one else may…"

I should NOT have said this last part.

Her arms flapping in the air like a condor getting ready for take off, Emma paces around the small exam room mumbling not very nice things under her breath.

"Who the FUCK do you think you are Evan? Fucking Wonder Woman? No, wait, fucking Superman?" That point was brought home with a poke to my chest. That ruffled my feathers. A pulsating starts in my chest and I can feel it working its way through my body. Not now! Anger is rolling through me and my body trembles slightly as I try to control my beast.

"Back-off Emma! Just back the fuck off! I'm tired and I don't want to have this conversation when we are both too mad to control the things we are saying, let alone in the E/R with an audience! I can't think of how to make you understand!"

"That's your damn problem Evan! You don't talk to me! Everything about you is a big secret! Why can't you trust me? Why won't you talk to me? What the hell is your problem?"

Now all I see is red. Heat is what I feel. My body is changing and the beast is coming without my permission. The urge to tear Emma apart and drain her dry is overwhelming.

Standing abruptly, I head for the door, only to be stopped by a grip on my arm.

"Where the fuck do you think you're going? We're not done here!" Her grip on my arm tightens.

Yanking my arm from her grasp, I get in her face, nose to nose, and look her square in the eyes. My rage is seething, and I growl out "I'm done. I'm going to walk out of here and cool off before we say anything else to each other that we don't mean."

Turning on my heel, I reach for the door handle and yank it open. As I pass through the doorway, Emma yells at my back, breaking the silence of the E/R.


Stopping in my tracks and without turning around I answer her over my shoulder.

"He already has." I resume my course out of the E/R and into the cold darkness of the early morning hours.

To Be Continued In Chapter 5

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