Grounded

Grounded by Constance Sharper

Book: Grounded by Constance Sharper Read Free Book Online
Authors: Constance Sharper
firm nod, squeezed Avery’s hand, and led her out the door. Mason walked quickly leaving Avery to jog to keep up. They burned down the hallway, heading straight for the door from which they’d come. They made it halfway down the hallway before Adalyn followed.
    “You’re going Mason?” Adalyn’s voice stopped them in their tracks.
    Mason’s grip tightened on Avery’s hand until it hurt. Wings twitching with seeping anxiety, Mason twisted to see Adalyn.
    “You know I can’t be here.” He said convincingly, but his voice still waivered. Avery couldn’t see his expression from where she stood but she knew it wouldn’t be a good one. In the history of Adalyn and Mason’s tumultuous relationship, this had to be the darkest point. Avery squeezed his hand, willing some strength with it. She couldn’t relate-- not even close, but she knew that despite what Adalyn had done Mason’s emotions still weren’t in the clear. Watching the frown on the girl’s face didn’t make it any easier.
    Adalyn took a long, deep breath.
    “You said we needed to talk. So let’s talk.”
    Adalyn commanded.
    Avery already knew what Mason was thinking. Not here and not now. This wasn’t right for them, not to do “The Talk” in front of everyone. But Adalyn wasn’t wavering.
    “Adalyn, it’s over.” Mason started. “We can’t do this anymore. So let’s cut our losses and move on.”
    “You’re serious about this? All this over a stupid human girl?” Adalyn kept her composure but not by much.
    “It’s not over Avery. It’s because we haven’t been working for a long time now and you know it. It just took me too long to say it.” Mason’s voice actually grew with strength. But then so did Adalyn’s.
    “Mason, you’re not thinking about the consequences. You and I were supposed to be married for a reason! You’ll lose everything.” The harpie woman nearly screamed.
    “That’s fine.” Mason agreed blankly. Suddenly animating again, he squeezed for Avery’s hand. Though momentarily stunned, Avery allowed the harpie to lead her outside. A stiff silence lingered in their wake. His wings opened and he pulled her against his chest. The rush meant little though. Adalyn never followed and they took off into empty blue skies. Only after they’d cleared the compound and Portland did Avery have the nerve to stir Mason from his thoughts.
    “Are you okay?” She asked, regretting how bland that sounded. Shifting her cheek against his shoulder, she didn’t look at his face afraid of what she might see.
    “Yea, I’m better than I’ve been for a long time.” Mason said quietly.
    “Good.” She blurted.
    “Of course, except now the government is involved in the Mikhail conspiracy, your friend and you are in danger all over again, now we have no place to start fixing things. That I’m not so okay with.”
    “Actually,” She maneuvered her head and gave him a half smile. “I have an idea on where to start. Thing is...you might not like it.”

    Ten
    “No way in hell.”
    “Come on Mason, you can’t stop me.” She pointed out and reached for his shoulder. Mason danced away before she could and pressed himself up against the opposite side of the grey brick wall. Despite the cold and snow coming down overhead, he stubbornly stayed put and glared downward at her. Avery regretted giving him so much time to think about it but here and now there wasn’t much he could do to stop her.
    Avery glanced backwards, looking over Mayweather Academy towards her dorm in the distance. They’d flown straight from Portland and arrived overnight. The temperature had plunged and the wind weaved through the trees and beat on the campus. Avery wrapped her arms around her body and turned back to Mason.
    “You thought it was a good idea a few hours ago.” She said.
    He shot her another harrowing look, the shadows underneath his eyes growing and his hands curling into fists. He hadn’t even bothered to wear the heavy trench coat and hide

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