Sun Kissed (Guardian Angel #2) - Page 11

“My parents never wanted me to come here. They wanted to stay cloaked by humans in big cities where vampire activity was low. Unfortunately, they went out one night and never came back.”

“Vampires?” Mila whispered and I threw her a don’t-be-insensitive look.

Ava nodded.

“Sorry …” I mumbled. “I know what you’re going through.”

What are you doing? I chastised myself. I’m supposed to be detaching myself from the students here, not making new friends.

“Do you have Fire Science next?” Mila asked.

“Yes.”

“You can sit with us, if you want.”

“I’d like that. I haven’t made that many friends. It would be nice to talk to anyone other than myself.”

So much for detachment. It wasn’t a bad thing, I suppose. Mila didn’t have any other friends here except Gabriel, Hunter, and maybe Rylan. Cloud died, Sam left, and everyone else treated her like a leper because Raina told them to. Perhaps having Ava around wasn’t such a bad idea.

The rest of breakfast was filled with chatting and fruit. There was no drama, for which I was grateful. The last thing I needed was more stress.

Fire Science was full this morning. At the back of the classroom were two free seats, which I humbly gave up to Mila and Ava.

“Are you sure?” Ava asked. She was hesitant.

“Absolutely.” Hurrying their friendship along made me feel better. She’d have someone by her side to shield her from Raina.

The only other available seat in the smoky, dim classroom was an empty one next to Rylan.

“Hi,” I greeted as I fell into the seat next to him.

“Hi there.” He smiled.

The teacher hadn’t arrived yet. Mr Kroon was never on time for classes but he made up for it by his grand entrances. I glanced at the door, still no Kroon.

“I’m surprised to find a seat next to you. Are you and Miss Wicked-Witch-of-the-North having a disagreement?” I smiled smugly.

I couldn’t care less about the relationship between Rylan and Raina, but my ‘inner friend’ thought it would be nice to see if everything was okay.

“Raina and I are finished.” A slight chuckle left his lips.

Rylan didn’t seem beat up about it at all. My eyes drifted to the front of the room, to Raina. She returned my gaze with a hard, jealous glare. There’s the Raina I know and love, my subconscious stated sarcastically. I rolled my eyes at her. I knew I was in for trouble because I was sitting next to Rylan. Lunch should be interesting.

In walked Mr Kroon, carrying a small tea light candle. The flame was small, roughly the size of my thumbnail. He waved his hand, pulling the flame from the candle wick. I watched in awe as he separated the single flame ball into twelve minuscule balls and sent them to hover above the small tea light candles on everyone’s desk. Mr Kroon pinched his hand shut and the flames attached themselves to the wicks and burned normally.

The room erupted into claps, whistles, and cheers as he bowed modestly at the front of the class. Mr Kroon was happy. His cheeks squeezed against his face as he smiled, they were so big I was afraid they were going to burst.

“Thank you, thank you!” He laughed before clearing off the blackboard.

The smell of chalk mixed with the already potent smell of smoke and I cleared my throat of the dust that entered with every shallow breath.

“Yes. I suppose we should open a window.” Rylan said, rising from his seat and opening the window closest to us.

“Thank you,” I whispered.

Mr Kroon stood at the front of the class, explaining how to split the something-or-others of fire. Truth be told, I had no idea what he was saying, I wasn’t paying attention. No matter how hard I tried, my mind kept reeling back to the higher power and these poor students. They had no idea what they are working for, what they are supporting and praising. A vampire. A dirty, sneaky, greasy, cold vampire.

“I need to tell you something,” Rylan muttered under his breath.

I didn’t turn my head, I glanced sideways briefly. He was concerned, apologetic, but he didn’t elaborate. I guess he wanted to tell me after class. I couldn’t imagine it pertained to anything other than Raina. I didn’t want to know, but if I could help in the slightest, it was the least I could do before leaving.

The cool air hit my skin and my body sighed in relief. I hadn’t noticed how thick and warm the air had been in the classroom.

“We have Angelology now, are you coming?” Mila called, Ava coming to a stop beside her.

“I’ll, uh, meet you there,” I replied.

Mila and Ava walked off, giggling and talking. I envied their simplicity. Rylan came to a stop in front of me and I met his blue eyes. I should tell him I was going away for a while. Fire Science and Botany were the only classes we shared, this might be my only time to say a proper farewell.

“So … there’s something I —”

“Can I just say something to get it out of the way?” I asked.

He nodded.

“I’m going away for a while.”

“What? Why?”

“I’m going to work for the higher power for a little while… He’s here.”

Uh-oh. Judging by Rylan’s terrified facial expression and stiff posture, I assumed no one else knew Lucian was here.

“Oh no. This is bad,” he whispered.

“Rylan, it’s okay.” I knew otherwise.

“No, Ruby, you don’t understand … shit.”

“Rylan, what’s wrong?”

I was starting to get frightened by his behavior, had something happened? Does Rylan know? Rylan sprinted past me, heading in the direction of the boys’ dorm.

“Rylan!” I called after him, but he didn’t turn back.

I spent the whole Angelology class worried about Rylan. I didn’t know the students had no idea the higher power was here. What if it spreads and creates some kind of mass panic? Why was everyone so afraid? If they’re this scared now, imagine what they’d do if they found out what he really was.

Lunch couldn’t come fast enough. When it did, I was waiting anxiously outside the dining hall.

“Have you seen Rylan?” I asked anyone that might have known him. I was met with shakes of the head.

“Ruby, what are you doing?” Eli asked, alarmed by my worried expression.

“I’m looking for Rylan. Have you seen him?”

“No. Is everything okay?” He eyed me cautiously but I was glancing nervously past him.

“I don’t know — I mean, I think so … can I talk to you later?”

He nodded and entered the hall. I felt bad for brushing him off, but I needed to sort this out. Then I spotted Rylan stalking slowly towards me.

“Rylan!” I called, jogging over to him.

His face was sad.

“Rylan, what’s wrong?”

“Ruby, I did something terrible …”

My stomach knotted, his words could mean anything.

“I —” He hesitated.

“It’s okay, you can tell me.”

He exhaled in defeat. “I filed a report against Eli and one against you.”

I was stunned. My brain throbbed, trying to understand.

“What do you mean?” I chuckled nervously in disbelief.

“I … Raina told me she filed a report against you but nothing happened. She didn’t want to send another one because it would look suspicious, so she talked me into filing one against Eli that included you. After that, she convinced Hunter to send one, but he changed his mind and tore it up, leaving it in the bin in his dorm. I broke in, took it, and sent it. Raina thought if I dated her, you would be jealous, and then perhaps you’d want to be with me … I wanted Eli and Hunter gone, not you, Ruby.”

My mouth was dry. I closed my eyes. It didn’t bother me as much as it would have yesterday. The higher power already had me, so I wasn’t scared. What upset me was I had treated Hunter like crap. I accused him of so much and ruined dinner all because of Rylan and Raina and their jealous vendettas against me.

“How —” My voice shook and I swallowed hard, trying not to cry. “How could you do this to me?”

“Ruby… I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you.”

“You did!” I shouted. “You hurt me so much, and this whole time I’ve been defending you! I’m being forced to leave my school to work for a —” I cut my words off on purpose. The word ‘vampire’ was too close to the tip of my tongue. “And it’s all because of you!”

Tears fell from my eyes, forcing me to squeeze them shut against the mascara that burned them. I wonder if Lucian would have found me if no one filed a report against Eli or me. For every slight step Rylan took forward, I took one back. I felt no sympathy for him; his furrowed brow didn’t affect me. I was mad and there was no coming back from that, not until I was satisfied with my revenge.

“Rylan, is everything okay?” The voice screeched down my body like fingernails to a black board. I hated her. I hated Raina more than anyone I have hated on this earth. If I could choose to revive Hank and kill Raina instead, I would.

I turned abruptly to face her. Raina looked scared, her skin was pale and she fidgeted with her fingers.

“Unh,” she gasped as I dove at her, tackling her to the ground. My legs straddled her waist and I had her by the throat.

“You’re a manipulative, deceitful, pathetic excuse for a goddess!” I growled at her. My eyes were solely on Raina’s, and it fuelled my anger more.

“Ruby, stop!” Rylan called as Raina’s breathing became ragged.

I began filling with heat, the core of my being became hotter and hotter. It was the Heelian power. I could feel my body absorbing the sun, making me angrier and angrier. Grass and vines wrapped around me, both Rylan and Raina we’re using their magic to force me off her, but every time they got a grasp around me my body flared and it burnt their progress. I enjoyed hear Raina tense in pain every time my body burnt hers. Every time Rylan reached out for me, I flared a golden light, burning his hand.

If I hadn’t been pulled off Raina, I might have killed her. All my problems, my anger, my grief, flooded into me and I lost control.

“Ruby! What are you doing?” a voice shouted. It was a familiar voice, a voice that I didn’t feel worthy of hearing. Hunter’s. “Take Raina to the guardians. They can take her to the medical building.”

My eyes were squeezed shut as I curled into Hunter. My brain was hot, causing a migraine to blare relentlessly in my head. Raina’s sobs blew away with the wind. I was on the ground, folded into myself in Hunter’s arms. Even with my eyes closed, I could see my world blurring and spinning.

Then darkness claimed me.

Grudges

Slowly I awoke from the depths of oblivion, then awareness came to me in a flash and I wasn’t in my comfort zone. What happened? How did I get here? Where was here? So many thoughts and questions scrambled to the surface in my mind. At first everything was so disorienting, I didn’t recognise the pure white ceiling. The ceiling of my dorm was off-white, so I wasn’t in my bed. I moved, and whatever I was lying on squeaked. A pleather couch.

As I glanced around the room, my eyes met paintings of the rolling Vidzeme countryside.

“You’re awake.” Eli’s voice was hard. He didn’t seem too happy with me.

“Go easy on her,” a voice muttered. It was Hunter.

“I think I’ll do the talking,” Mr Aleksandrov interjected.

Slowly, I sat up. Hunter grasped me by the elbow, helping me to a sitting position. Mr Aleksandrov, Eli, and Hunter now stood around me. I didn’t make eye contact with anyone, I was too embarrassed. I no longer had a migraine, it had downsized to a small ache in the back of my head. Hunter slid in next to me but I kept my eyes on the floor.

“Ruby, how are you feeling?” Mr Aleksandrov asked.

“I’ve been better.”

“Do you remember what happened?”

I nodded.

“Raina is okay, she’s quite sunburnt but nothing too serious, luckily.”

“I’m sorry, I… I don’t know what came over me.” I remembered her face, scared and wide-eyed as my hand clenched tightly around her throat. “I couldn’t stop.”

“Apparently you’re like a UV grenade.” Hunter chuckled.

I was happy to see him, but his upbeat attitude was making me nauseous.

“We’re lucky that’s all it was.” Mr Aleksandrov sighed. “You don’t know how dangerous that situation could have become, Ruby.”

I combed my fingers through my hair. “I know I’m in a lot of trouble right now, and I accept all consequences, but can I go back to my room? I’m not feeling well.”

“I don’t think you understand the severity of your actions,” Eli replied.

I dropped my head into my hand. The minor ache at the back of my head had turned into a full blown headache and was getting worse by the minute. The words that filtered through my ears became painful, intolerable.

“Please, can I go?” I spoke through clenched teeth.

Every word that left my mouth caused my brain to throb harder against my skull. I did understand. I attacked a student with a power I have no control over, a power that I didn’t know how to stop. The only information I had was that if I got too angry, there was a possibility I might explode.

“If you’re not feeling well, perhaps we should get you down to the medical wing…” Mr Aleksandrov thought aloud.

“No. I just need to rest. I need my bed.”

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