The Shadows | Chapter 31 of 34 - Part: 1 of 4

Author: L.A. Banks | Submitted by: Maria Garcia | 1439 Views | Add a Review

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Damali peered around the huge, marble-ensconced edifice of the Thirtieth Street train station, her gaze roving up toward the glass and brass pathways of the ancient, majestic structure that linked north to south sections of the building along the western wall. The last time she’d been even near the place, thousands of demon bats and Harpies had shattered plate glass to whirl after her squad in a deadly funnel cloud. That night, they’d lost Padre Lopez. She could tell every Guardian on the team was revisiting the memory, and she was just glad that the building had been repaired so there was no outward memory trigger of that very bad night when Lilith was on their asses.

As she watched the central information board intermittently flip down small black panels to update train arrivals and departures, she wondered if going by rail was a good idea. Fold-away was best, but Rabbi Zeitloff was right—she and Carlos needed to preserve their strength. Going by car was just as perilous, maybe more so. An eighteen-wheeler could be sent to squash them like a bug, and the poor human driver that would have been temporarily possessed would be collateral damage. Then again, riding the rails meant putting hundreds of innocent passengers at risk, if evil decided to rear its ugly head while they were on board. But that was also true of highway motorists. A crazy chain-reaction pileup was no less dangerous.

Damali closed her eyes as her stomach growled. Auntie Anne’s pretzels were calling her name, along with all the luscious, forbidden butter they were drizzled with. She could practically taste the tangy, pungent flavor of honey mustard sauce on her tongue . . . that and a lemonade.

Carlos stood up from the long, gleaming wooden bench. She looked up at him with a slight frown of concern.

“Everything all right?”

“Be right back,” he said with a half smile.

Big Mike was right behind him. “Anybody else want anything?”

Dan headed to the Au Bon Pain. “Speak now, or forever hold your peace.”

“Toffee cookies,” Heather said with a grin. “Lots. And milk.”

“Done,” he said, pointing at her, and then whirling around to jog toward the store.

That was it; the team scattered to whichever food emporium was calling their names. Even Marlene was up on her feet with Shabazz checking out the Amazon Cafe smoothie bar. Resistance was futile. The team needed to eat, get a good base on before whatever kicked off—because who knew when something so basic as eating a decent meal might happen again.

Carlos was back before the others and he handed her a greasy bag loaded with pretzels and dip, along with an extra large tumbler of lemonade. “Already blessed,” he said, sitting beside her.

She took a deep swig of the very sweet lemonade and her eyes crossed with ecstasy. “Thank you. How’d you know?”

“Same way you knew to put a pain siphon in that mental convo we had on the way back from the funeral.”

For a moment she just looked at him.

“Thank you, baby,” he said quietly. “I needed that . . . just like you need to put something in your stomach. Want a salad or fruit?” He glanced around the train station and then back at her.

Damali just shook her head. “Thanks, maybe later . . . wrong as it is, this was what I had a taste for.”

Carlos took the huge plastic tumbler from her so that she could ferociously dig into the bag of buttery pretzels and he chuckled as she popped a large piece of sesame pretzel into her mouth with a moan.

“I should have gotten you something to eat,” she mumbled. “You haven’t eaten in days.”

“Oh, don’t worry—I always get mine,” he said with a sly grin and sipped her lemonade.

She smiled as he dug into the bag and opened up one of the little mustard dip containers and then sat there holding her lemonade with one hand and a dip in the other as though he were a human tray. She broke off a piece of pretzel and fed him and they went on that way in companionable silence, both eating and coordinating the meal so that the butter from the bag didn’t soil their clothes.


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Great book, nicely written and thank you BooksVooks for uploading

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