Inigo The Magician from Whispers Collection #1

In the dark, my heart beat hard. I whispered, “Is Inigo dead?”

Excerpt From Inigo The Magician

He was beside my bed when I woke up. Asleep, my body must have picked up on the changes in the surroundings. The displacement of air, the slide of a lithe body through space, atoms spinning away in reaction to something that had not been there before.

Probably the temperature changed. A few more degrees Fahrenheit.

Sounds that were foreign to my tiny apartment must have wormed their way into my sleeping state. Maybe that faint but terribly familiar acrid scent was enough.

It was November the twelfth: three months past the day I was supposed to have been married, and I woke up.

Knowing. With the promise I’d made uncoiling in my center. Alive. Sentient.

The room was different. Less empty. The silence pressed in on me with unaccustomed weight. When I inhaled, my lungs had to work harder to pull in the heavier air. He was here.

My heart pounded so loud I was sure he could hear. Either Inigo had sent him after me, or he was dead. One or the other.

“Little human.” His voice was low. Not a whisper, but not a normal tone, either. I knew it was him even though in my dreams his voice was never serene the way it was now. “No more dreams.”

My bedroom was black as pitch: that wasn’t natural either. In the darkness, his eyes burned like red-gold embers. The heat from his body radiated in the space between my bed and where he sat.

Six months ago, he’d killed my fiancé.

I don’t blame him. I don’t. I can’t.

He was forced to do it, but the fact remains he broke Anthony’s neck while I watched. Night after night, that sound finds its way into my dreams. Sometimes when I’m awake I’m convinced my brain, damaged by whatever I really saw that night, concocted a set of memories for me. Impossibilities created to replace an uglier truth. What, I wondered, could be worse than the ones I lived with instead?

In the dark, my heart beat hard. I whispered, “Is Inigo dead?”

“Yes.”

The truth of that sliced through me, cut away my fear. If Inigo had sent him, the creature beside my bed would already be remaking the Hell I’d been through. He would not have waited for me to wake up. He would not have sat in silence for even a moment.

Of course Inigo was dead.

I wondered if he felt the same dark joy I did.

He leaned over and touched the tip of his finger between my eyebrows. A light touch. The back of my skull pressed into my pillow while the heat of his fingertip spread out and in. Above my head, his fingernails clicked and scratched along the top of the headboard.

“Now,” he said, low and soft. An undertone of rasp vibrated in his voice, as if the organs that formed the words were unused to human speech. “I am here.”

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