Harvest Hunting

Harvest Hunting by Yasmine Galenorn

Book: Harvest Hunting by Yasmine Galenorn Read Free Book Online
Authors: Yasmine Galenorn
that kind of a pledge out of pity or guilt.”
    Hunting around, I found my dagger and washed her off carefully. Then, motioning for him to sit on the bed, I held up my hand and sliced a clean, short cut on the palm. Chase held out his hand, and I did the same, then, tossing the dagger on the bed, I clasped his palm, our cuts pressed together.
    “Johnson, I pledge to you my loyalty, my friendship, and my love. I’ll always have your back, as long as it doesn’t interfere with my other oaths.”
    He shivered. “Delilah, you’ll be my sister, my blood-bound friend, and I’ll always be here for you. I offer you my loyalty, friendship . . . and my love.”
    As our palms touched, a tear rolled down his cheek, and I gently leaned in and kissed it away. The salt tickled my tongue.
    “I guess I’d better head out.” He glanced at his watch. “It’s going on two, and I have to be up at seven.”
    “Did you want to sleep here? You’d get at least an extra hour of sleep that way.” I didn’t want to see him go. It was over, yes, but I didn’t want to see him turn and walk out the door.
    He paused. “Would that be weird?”
    “No, no. Stay and sleep over. One last night.” I glanced at my bed. “Since I still reek of skunk, you can have the bed, and I’ll sleep in one of the cat beds. Much easier to replace than a mattress.”
    Once again, he loosened his shirt and slid out of his pants. “Thanks, Delilah. Just . . . thank you.”
    I slipped into the bathroom and out of my nightgown and took another quick shower, then dried off and transformed into Tabby. As I padded back into the bedroom, I saw that Chase was in bed, already asleep. He was breathing softly, and he’d put the cat bed on my side of the mattress. I let out a soft mew, my heart breaking again. Leaping up on the bed, I climbed into the cushioned nest, circled three times, and slept.
     
     
    When I awoke, he was already gone. I shifted back into two-legged form and saw that he’d left a note for me. It was a simple, “See you later . . . Sis . . .” but it hit me in the gut, and I slid to the floor, weeping softly.
    A moment later, the door opened after a light tap, and Camille peeked in. “Delilah, you need to get up . . . Delilah? Honey? What’s wrong?” She raced over to kneel by my side. “Are you okay? Is it about your hair? Were you hurt in the fight? Are you in pain?”
    “No—no . . . none of that.” I let her cuddle me and then leaned away, not wanting to smell up her pretty dress. “Last night Chase came back. We talked. It’s over. We broke up.”
    “What? How did this happen?” A shocked look on her face, she bundled me up and into my robe and led me downstairs. “You need some food. Come on, you can tell me over breakfast. The guys are out right now, so it’s just you and me and Iris.”
    The kitchen was thick with the scent of pancakes and syrup and eggs and bacon. Camille handed me a plate and took one for herself, and we loaded the food on as Iris finished making coffee.
    “You look like death warmed over, girl,” she said.
    “I feel like it. Sit with us—I want to tell you both something.” When they were sitting at the table, and we were eating breakfast, I told them about my night with Chase. Everything.
    A shaft of sunlight peeked through the clouds then, splashing through the window to fall across the table, and the late autumn light bathed the room in a golden glow. I closed my eyes for a moment, enjoying the sudden quietude the light brought to the room. But all too quickly, it vanished as the clouds moved in again.
    “Wow. So . . . just . . . wow.” Camille put down her fork and stared at me. “The Nectar of Life hit him hard. I feel sorry for the man.”
    Iris smiled softly. “It makes sense, my dear. Think if you were expecting another thirty or forty years of life, and then you’re mortally wounded. And the only thing that saves your life—that can possibly save you—suddenly throws you into staring

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