Read Tasting Darkness By Jessica Hall Chapter 58 – “Please. Tobias.” I cried when I couldn’t move my body, he looked torn and his chewed his lin. his eyes went to Ryze. “Please,” I begged, tears trekking down my face, and I saw his lip quiver before his eyes went t o Darius behind me. “Turn around, and someone better fucking explain why that thing just attacked me,” Darius snarled behind me. My feet obeyed his command, and the moment I turned, Darius stalked toward me, reaching for Ryze. Just as he went to snatch him, Tobias grabbed him first, earning a glare from Darius. Ryze screeched as Tobias plucked him off my shoulder, holding him as if he was an oversized chicken, his talons ripping from my skin painfully.
“Kill it,” Darius sneered. “No, please,” I sobbed. My knees gave way beneath me, and I fell at his feet. He tilted his head t o the side, looking between Ryze and me before his eyes went to Tobias, who turned his head away from Darius’s glare. Lycus and Kalen remained still, their eyes not leaving Ryze like they were petrified to move if he attacked. Though he had no magic yet, but was still deadly, especially with how big he had grown in a few weeks.
“It’s a phoenix, Aleera. They are fucking dangerous,” Darius spat at me.
“He is hers; she has been looking after him,” Tobias blurted, and Darius’s eyes flickered toward him. He looked at Tobias, and Darius’ eyes turned demonic.
“What, and you knew?” Darius asked, looking at Ryze, still clutched in his hand. Tobias sighed and nodded.
“His name is Ryze; Aleera found him injured and nursed him back to health; I knew you would kill him, so I never told you; it’s also why she fainted, Darius. She was sharing her food with him,” Lycus scoffed, and everyone’s eyes went to him while I sat helpless on the floor.
“What?” Darius asked him.
“No wonder she fucking fainted when she was only eating one meal a day,” Lycus said from behind Darius.
“Bullshit,” Darius snarled, and Lycus shrugged. I have seen them down there, so how would h e know? 1
“I had to go sit with her the other day. They weren’t letting her eat. I also spoke to one cook; h e said she only snuck in just as the doors opened to steal food but never went to lunch or dinner, hadn’t until I told them to lay-off her,” Lycus snapped at Darius. I dropped my gaze to the floor; the way he said it, I sounded like a thief. Shame washed over me.
“And you didn’t think to fucking say anything?” Darius snapped at me, gripping my face and forcing me to look at him. I opened my mouth before closing it. There was no point defending myself, not against him.
I didn’t care what he did to me as long as he left Ryze alone. Ryze squawked, and Tobias set him on the floor; Ryze moved, hopped, and jumped toward me before stopping and hissing at Darius, who stepped back from him as Ryze curled up in my lap.
“You let it bond to her?” Darius snarled and Ryze hissed at him. Lycus and Kalen moved further away from him in my lap, and I stroked his feathers, calming him.
“How is that even possible?” Lycus gasped, and I went to say because I found him hurt, but Tobias stepped in.
“He was nearly dead when she found him. She said he tried to bite her but then got used to her. Somehow he bonded to her,” Tobias explained.
“And you didn’t think to fucking say anything?” Darius snarled.
“I wasn’t going to let you kill it,” Tobias snapped back at him.
“Is this where you two have been sneaking off to every day? To feed that?” Darius growled, pointing to Ryze. Neither of us answered, and Darius snarled.
“Well, she can’t keep it. What happens when it awakens?” Darius said, raising his hand, and m y eyes widened.
“No,” I yelled, covering Ryze with my body. Darius’s feet stopped next to me before my head was jerked back. Ryze hissed and tried to bite him. I held him tighter, knowing Darius would kill him if he did. 1
“I will do whatever you want; just don’t hurt him,” I blurted out unthinkingly.Darius tilted his head, observing my face. “Anything?” he asked, and I nodded, clutching Ryze, refusing to let him go as he hissed at Darius, who still had a hold of my hair. He shoved me forward, and I let out a breath. 1
Ryze cawed softly, rubbing his face and beak across my chest, making me remember I wasn’t even clothed as I looked down to see I only had my bra and panties on. Goosebumps covered m y skin, and I looked at everyone, all of them staring at Darius before my eyes went to him, too.
“If I let you keep it, you will do what I ask?” I chewed the inside of my lip and saw Tobias shake his head. He scrubs a hand down his face.
“Darius, no! You have done enough damage today, don’t you think?” Tobias snarled like he knew what Darius would ask. I just stared at him, wondering what it was he wanted. 1
“Yes or no, Aleera, you do as I ask, or I kill your pet,” Darius snapped, and I looked at Ryze. His tongue slivered out and licked my chin, and I looked at Darius, sniffled but nodded my head. I
“Fuck sake, Darius,” Tobias snapped.
“Shut up! It’s her choice. She could say no, and I kill it, or say yes, I will let her keep it.”
“Until you want something else from her,” Tobias snarled.
“He bites me or tries to attack me. I will kill him, go put him somewhere,” Darius snapped at m e, and I got up and went to rush to my room when he called out again. “In here, he stays, but h e moves to hurt me. He dies,” Darius says, and I froze, wondering why he kept saying that before looking for a spot to put him.