Daggers & Dresses (Enlighten Series Book 2)(10)

By: Kristin D. Van Risseghem


“You’re such a dork,” I replied. “It’s not like I packed these bags, anyway.”

“I’d hate to see how much you’d pack for a week of travel. We’ll have to hire a trolley just to carry all your stuff.”

“Why hire anyone when I have a strapping young man to do it for me?” I beamed at him.

“I can take the hint.” He bent down, picked up the bags, and tossed them over his shoulder as though they weighed nothing. “Sidelle, are you ready?”

“Have to grab my stuff,” Sidelle told us as she sprinted toward the door. “I’ll be right back; then we can go.”

Cali walked over to Kieran’s car and hopped into the back seat, letting Sidelle ride shotgun. I lingered outside by Kieran’s side.

“Why do you think Sidelle invited Cali this weekend?” I asked.

“She always has a reason for everything she does. We’ll find out soon enough, I’m sure.”

A few minutes later, she sauntered out leading one tiny rolling suitcase. Kieran watched her suspiciously then glanced in my direction. I giggled. I knew what he was thinking.

“Oh, my gosh. How can she have enough stuff for two nights?” Cali whispered when I crawled into the back seat. “I mean, we’re coming back on Sunday, right?”

“Some people know how to pack.” Kieran snickered. “Good thing you girls are small, because you’d have to share space with Zoe’s luggage in the back seat if she’d brought any more stuff.”

I smacked his head. “Shut it, K. I don’t want to hear anything more from you.”

Kieran and Sidelle chatted quietly in the front while Cali and I talked about school. I also laid out the groundwork for a little scheme I had for Cali.

“So, Cali,” I said. “About last night—”

“That was so much fun, dress shopping,” she said. “Too bad I didn’t find one. Better luck next time, right?”

“Yeah. Next time.” I poked Sidelle in the back of the head, trying to get her attention. She flipped the passenger mirror down and glared at me. I cocked my head, and she shrugged.

“So after we got back to my house, what do you remember?” I asked Cali.

Her forehead creased as she thought back. “You know what? That’s the funny thing. I kinda remember arriving, then you doing my hair, and all of us having a fashion show for your sister.” She turned to face me. “But everything’s a bit fuzzy after that. I must’ve gone home though, because I remember saying ‘hi’ to my parents and then going to bed.”

So someone—Sidelle—had wiped her mind of last night’s events.

“Are you and Vash dating?” I asked.

“I’m not exactly sure. I mean, he’s cute, and I like him, but ... ”

She looked confused, so I helped her along. “Maybe I’m reading him totally wrong, but he has a certain look in his eyes when he looks at you, Cali. You should ask him out.” I let her ponder that. “Hey, K, have you met Vash’s dad before?”

“Yes. Don’t worry; he’s nice. You aren’t a threat to him or his family. And let’s face it, Zoe, you can’t hurt a fly.”

I screaked, a little nervous, but then I saw Cali had no idea what he was talking about. “What’s that supposed to mean?” I joked, hoping to ease the tension. “I hurt plenty of mosquitoes!”

We all whooped. It was true, though. Usually, I was a weakling when it came to anything physical. Being on the track team kept me fit, but I hated conflict.

Yet, strangely enough, some prophesy written before I was born marked me as the person destined to lead others into battle to prevent Armageddon.





Chapter Five





Zoe





TWENTY MINUTES LATER we wound our way down a street that led to a dead end and ended at a massive wrought iron gate. To the left I spotted a guard shack—or a small house. A dozen or so well-built men stood inside, talking with each other, while others worked a control panel and kept an eye on the monitors. When our car approached, one of the burly men stepped out with a clipboard, and Kieran lowered the window.

The guard leaned in to get a better view of everyone in the car. “Name, please.”

“Kieran Auduro. Vash is expecting us.”

He flipped through the pages, tapping his finger on the clipboard. “Yes, I see your name on the list. Have you been here before?”

“Yes.”

“Okay. Go ahead to the main house.” He motioned us forward.

“Holy cow, Kieran!” Cali said, glancing out the back window at the guards. “What does Vash’s dad do for a living? I mean, who has a gate like that with so many guards?”