Pure, p.13
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       Pure, p.13

         Part #2 of Covenant series by Jennifer L. Armentrout
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Page 13

 

  “Are you kidding me?” Olivia shoved her food into my limp hands. “For the love of the gods, there are empty classrooms and beds for this kind of stuff. ”

  Before I could stop her, she pushed open the gate to the courtyard. I guess if she wasn’t getting laid than no one else could? “Olivia—”

  “Hey!” she yelled, storming forward. “Hey! You little pervs, go get a room!”

  Olivia disappeared around a thick rosebush. Rolling my eyes, I trailed behind her. Walking inside the courtyard was like being in a different world. The wild mixture of flowers and plants, all sweet and tangy, mixed with the bitterness of herbs and assaulted my senses. There was also something unique about the plants in here. Come summer or winter, the foliage never died. God mojo juice, I guessed.

  Greek statues lined the walkway, serving as a reminder that the gods were always watching. Runes were etched into the pathway, as were various symbols that signified the gods. Whoever had done the drawings seriously could have benefited from art lessons. But the place was kind of like the Garden of Eden.

  And someone was partaking in its forbidden fruit.

  “You guys need to—oh. ”

  Olivia stopped so unexpectedly I nearly crashed into her. She stood beside the nightshade—the plant the oracle had compared to “kisses from those who walk among the gods” or something crazy like that. I don’t know why I noticed the purple hue of the petals first. Perhaps it was some kind of natural preservation instinct.

  But then I saw Elena.

  I’d never seen her quite so undressed before, however. Her skirt was hiked up, shirt gaping wide open, and… that was pretty much all I wanted to see. Then my gaze fell on her partner.

  “Oh. My. Gods!” I shrieked, wishing my hands were empty so I could cover my eyes—or claw them out.

  Golden eyes, full of amusement, met mine. “Is there something we can help you two with?” Seth asked, clearly unfazed by the intrusion.

  I whirled around, squeezing my eyes shut. My face felt like a thousand shades of red.

  “No. Nothing at all. ” Olivia backed up. “Sorry to interrupt. ”

  “You sure? There’s always room for one—or two—more. ”

  “Seth!” Elena shrieked, not sounding entirely dismayed by the prospect.

  I headed back up the path, Olivia snapping at my heel. Seth’s deep laughter followed us all the way out of the courtyard. We didn’t speak again until we stood in front of our dorm. Shock must have dampened the weird hot flash, because it was no longer there. For a multitude of reasons, I felt grateful.

  “Well,” Olivia said a bit unsteadily.

  “Yeah…”

  Her lips pursed. “I hate Seth. I think he’s an ass, but he does have a really nice butt. ”

  “Yeah…”

  Olivia’s eyes were wide. “You know what? I think I’m going to go see Caleb. Like right now. ”

  I snickered. “Yeah, you go do that. ”

  CHAPTER 7

  NOT SURPRISINGLY, SETH KNOCKED ON MY BEDROOM WINDOW that night. Honestly, the curfew thing sucked—being confined to my room and not being able to really sleep usually left me with a mad case of boredom—so I kind of welcomed his little visits. Especially when he just wanted to watch a movie and I’d fall asleep.

  But tonight was different.

  I still hadn’t decided what to wear tomorrow, and that was a major deal. Aiden only ever saw me in boring gym clothes. I needed something cute—a little sexy—but I couldn’t look like I was trying too hard. My entire closet was on my bed. And of course, I’d just seen some of Seth’s—uh, more private parts. I kind of didn’t want to see his face tonight.

  The knock came again, more urgent. Groaning, I went to the window and opened it. Thankfully he was fully dressed. “What?”

  Seth loped over the windowsill, inviting himself in. “Nice jammies. ”

  “Shut up. ” I grabbed a sweater off the bed and slipped it on, wishing I’d put on long PJ bottoms instead of shorts and a thin tank.

  “You know, I don’t care about the tag marks. Makes you look dangerous in an extremely hot way. ”

  “It’s not the marks I’m covering up, and you know that. ”

  “Partly true and partly a lie. The scars embarrass you, because you’re incredibly vain for a chick who wants to be a Sentinel. And you’re uncomfortable being half-naked around me—”

  “I’m not half-naked! And I’m not uncomfortable around you. And I’m not vain. ”

  “You’re a terrible liar. ” He sat down on my bed.

  Okay. I was lying. Vanity wasn’t the worst sin and yeah, Seth made me uncomfortable for a lot of reasons, but that wasn’t the point. “Why are you here?”

  “I wanted to check on you. ”

  My brows furrowed. “Why?”

  His glanced around the room, his gaze settling on the clothes scattered around. “Can’t find what to wear?”

  “Uh… I was just going through my closet. ”

  “I can tell. ”

  I sighed, rubbing my forehead wearily. “What do you want? As you can see I’m kind of busy. ”

  A brow arched. “I know. What an exciting life you live, going through your closet on a Friday night and all. ”

  “Yeah, not all of us have the exciting life you do, Seth. ”

  His lips split into a satisfied grin. “I knew it. ”

  “Knew what?”

  “You’re mad at me. ”

  I stared at him and lifted my arms, waiting for a better explanation.

  “You’re upset over this afternoon. ” He pushed aside several potential choices for tomorrow as he leaned back. “Were you jealous, Alex?”

  My jaw almost hit the floor. It took me a moment to respond. “I’m confused to why you think I’d be jealous. ”

  Seth gave me a knowing look. “Perhaps you’re jealous of Elena?”

  “What?” I picked up a cute sweater I’d bought before we’d gone into lockdown. “Me, jealous of Elena and her Tinkerbell hair—don’t think so. ”

  He stretched over and tugged the sweater out of my hand. “Oh. Catty, aren’t you?”

  “Not at all. If I’d only known about your Peter Pan complex, I would’ve introduced you two sooner. ” I reached for it, but he rolled it up into a ball and tossed the sweater across the room. “Ugh! You are so annoying!”

  “Just admit you’re jealous. That’s the first step, and the second step is doing something about it. ”

  I glared at Seth. “I could care less what—or who—you do in your spare time. ” Then something struck me. “Wait. You know what? This is messed up. ”

  “Do tell. ”

  “Everyone jumps me about how every single thing I do is a reflection upon you, but you’re doing people in the garden! How is that okay?”

  “You make it sound so distasteful. ” He smiled much like a cat. “Don’t knock it until you try it. Oh. Wait. You haven’t tried anything, have you, my little virgin Apollyon?”

  I swung out at him as hard as I possibly could. Anticipating my reaction, Seth caught my hand. His eyes flashed dangerously as he tugged me forward. My own momentum caused me to stumble. I ended up falling forward.

  Seth twisted onto his side and circled his arms around me. “Always hitting,” he said cheerfully. “I think we should work on your manners. ”

  The side of my face was smashed into a pile of shirts that had gone into the “maybe” pile. “Oh, come on. You’re wrinkling all my clothes, you jerk-face. ”

  “Your clothes are fine. I want to chat. ”

  I tried to elbow him, but his arms clamped down. “Really, you want to talk right now?”

  He wriggled closer. “Yes. ”

  “And we have to be lying like this for what reason?”

  “I don’t know. It makes me feel good. I know it makes you feel good. And I don’t mean the way I’m sure you think I mean. ” He paused, and I could feel his chest rise and fall against my
back. “Our bodies relax around each other. ”

  I scrunched up my face, not buying his reason at all. “Can we talk about something else?”

  “Sure. ” I could hear the smile in his voice. “Let’s talk about the fact you haven’t been sleeping. ”

  “What?” I managed to squirm enough to get one of my arms loose and flip onto my back. “I… I sleep fine. ”

  “You sleep for a few hours. Then you wake up. Nightmares, huh?”

  I stared at him. “Why do you always have to be so creepy?”

  His lips twitched. A flicker of amusement, then his expression returned to a customary smug mask. “Whenever you’re upset you suck me right in. Wakes me up every single night, and now I’m not getting any sleep unless I stay with you. ”

  I scooted over, but his arm caught me. “Well, sorry. I don’t know how to stop it. If I did, I wouldn’t interrupt your precious beauty sleep. ”

  Seth chuckled low in his throat. “I guess it’s because the connection between us is getting stronger since we’re spending more time together. With you being an emotional wreck these days, I spend half my time wanting a Valium. ”

  The urge to kick him off the bed hit me hard. “I’m not an emotional wreck. ”

  He didn’t bother responding to that. “Doesn’t it strike you as odd that the only times you sleep all the way through the night are when I stay with you?”

  It did strike me as odd—and annoying. “So?”

  Seth leaned over. “Your body relaxes around me and you can rest. All thanks to your favorite thing—the connection we share. If you get too upset, you just need me. It will work both ways once you Awaken. ”

  I jerked as far away from him as I could, which wasn’t very far at all. “Oh, for the love of the gods, you have got to be kidding me. ”

  “Alex, I’m as serious as a daimon attack. ”

  And I knew he was being serious. I just didn’t want to admit it. The idea of him sensing my emotions made me what to hurl. If I wanted to cry, he’d know. The same went for needing to punch someone or if I was in the middle of a hot make-out session, he’d know and—

  My eyes widened in realization and a strange feeling unfurled in the pit of my stomach. “Wait. Wait one second, Seth. If you can feel my emotions or whatever when I’m spazzing out, then I should be able to feel yours. ”

  “Right, but not—”

  I moved so fast I broke free of his embrace and shot to my feet. He stayed on the bed, half-reclined. “Oh. My. Gods. I have felt you. ”

  Seth’s brows rose slowly. “No way, I know how to shield myself so that I’m not broadcasting my every wish and desire like you. ”

  “Oh. No. You are so wrong. ” My cheeks burned just thinking about it. The nights I’d felt all hot and tingling—and right before I’d walked in on him and Elena—it wasn’t just my overactive hormones. “Oh, this sucks. ”

  Interest sparked in his eyes and he sat up, resting his hands on his knees. “What are you talking about?”

 
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