Dragon's Gift Complete Series - Linsey Hall Page 0,2

a murder.” I slowed as we neared the bar called Despair, then slipped into an alley nearby. The small cobblestone square was surrounded on all sides by old three-story buildings. Across the square, the shop named Evil stood quiet and empty. Stars sparkled overhead, but they were just an enchantment. There was only rock above us since we were underground, with the castle sitting on top of that.

Bree and I crouched in the alley, sticking to the shadows. The darkness soothed me, which was both weird and probably bad.

“It’s here. I can feel it,” I whispered.

There was no commotion, no blood, no body. It hadn’t happened yet, thank fates. Damned if I’d let the murder actually happen.

Why had I been chosen for this, though? Why would they give me—No-Magic Rowan—this clue?

I peered into the darkness, searching each doorway and alley that led off the square. “You see anything? Hear anything?”

“Nothing unusual.”

“Good.” One of Bree’s gifts was enhanced senses. The Norse god Heimdall had given them to her.

Theoretically, there was a Pantheon of gods out there waiting to give me their magic, too, just like they had with Bree and Ana.

But it hadn’t happened.

Maybe I wasn’t worthy.

Maybe it was the darkness I could feel growing slowly inside me.

Nope. Not going to think about it.

If I didn’t think about it, maybe it wasn’t real. Maybe I was even imagining it.

A shout sounded from an alley across the way. I stiffened, my fingers tingling where they touched the hilt of the dagger sheathed at my thigh.

Next to me, Bree leaned forward, peering into the dark. “Two people. Young men. Pissed, from the sound of it.”

I grinned at the British slang. Pissed equaled drunk. We might live in Scotland now, but our roots were in Death Valley, California. We’d only been in Scotland about six months, but we were already changing to fit it.

At the other side of the small square, the shadows shifted. “See that?”

Bree squinted in that direction. “A man. Big. He’s—”

The two drunk men we’d heard stumbled into the alley at that point, cutting her off. They were young. No older than us, and we were only twenty-three. Laughing and joking, they turned toward Despair, their eyes glued to the bright lights in the windows.

Movement from the roofs caught my eye, and I glanced up. Demons jumped down, at least six of them. Each was armed to the teeth, with massive horns spearing the sky. They were a variety of species—all sizes and shapes—and their dark magic rolled off them, stinking of sulfur and death. I didn’t recognize any of their species, which meant I wouldn’t know what magic they were going to throw at us.

In the sky above, a creature cawed, loud and fierce.

“A bird?” Bree flashed confused eyes toward me.

“What the heck is a bird doing underground?” I looked up, then gasped. It had to be the size of a car. “It’s freaking huge.”

The massive creature dived, headed for the two men in the middle of the square. It didn’t look exactly like a bird. In fact, its image flickered so much it was hard to tell what it was. The demons surrounded the men, but the creature was headed right for them.

Bree looked up. “I’ve got this.”

Magic swirled around her as her silver wings flared from her back. In addition to having the magic of the Norse gods, she was a Valkyrie. It came with some pretty sweet perks. She leapt into the sky, her huge wings carrying her toward the massive winged beast. She drew her sword as she flew.

As awesome as it was to watch Bree fight, I had to stop these demons. There were six of them. Possibly too many for me to fight without magic, but I had my potions.

I drew a potion bomb from the sack at my side, and I hurled it at the nearest demon. It exploded against his back, blue liquid splashing everywhere.

He roared, then fell flat on his face, the paralyzing potion freezing his muscles until he couldn’t move.

The two young men stood frozen in the middle as I raced out, sprinting for the demons who were closing in on them. I drew another blue potion bomb—I color coded them according to spell—and hurled it at another demon.

He roared and fell, stiff as a board.

I neared the first demon that I’d paralyzed. He lay face down on the ground, frozen. I drew a sword from the ether, using a bit of handy magic that I’d bought rather than owned