The storm outside was brutal, and I had been waiting for Azalea to wake up. I needed to see for myself that she was okay after we finally got Tyson back. Once she woke, I could finally relax, but I also needed to go help, Clarice. The castle was in utter chaos with everything going on. “Though now I know you’re awake and okay, I might go down and help Clarice and check on Tandi, if you don’t mind?” I tell Azalea.
“No, of course! You didn’t have to wait with me,” she tells me. I raised an eyebrow at her as if that was the silliest thing I had ever said. Azalea winced as she tried to roll her eyes at me, causing me to laugh softly. I leaned over, pressing my lips ever so lightly to her head. I didn’t want to cause more pain than she was already experiencing. “More than my life,” Azalea whispers.
“Always more,” I replied before cradling Tyson and wandering toward the door, I passed Liam as I left her knowing Gannon was going down the dungeons to swap places with him while they tried to torture information out of Tanner the gardener.
I headed straight for the ballroom to find everyone rolling out mattresses and blankets. We lost entire wings from the storm. A tree had even fallen through our wing. The destruction it was causing was terrible.
Yet we were safe. That was all that mattered as I set Tyson down to help Clarice board up the windows. Tyson rushes off to play with Oliver, who was sitting with Peter.
I pull the funnel out of his throat slowly, and Tanner chokes, gurgles, and sputters on the wolfsbane. His tongue sizzled in his mouth, his blood-drenched the floor, his hand trapped in the vice was almost completely split down the middle, and Kyson twisted it, hearing the last crunch as the vice-grip completely closed, splitting his hand in half.
His screams made me buzz with excitement, grabbing the old lead sprinkler. It was a Medi-evil torture device used to shower victims with molten lead. However, we improvised. Instead, I filled it with sulfuric acid. It was essentially a giant ladle with an iron handle. The sphere at the bottom is filled with acid. I began shaking the lead sprinkler, showering Tanner with acid.
His screams were h***rse yet still horrific as I sprinkled it over his legs. “What have you got planned with the hunters? Where is Ester, Tanner?” The King asked him. I pull the lead sprinkler away, yet his flesh continues to be eaten away. Kyson then reaches for the baking soda to neutralize it. His screams turns to wailing as he runs out of breath from choking on wolfsbane and the harsh screams leaving him..
“I hope they kill all of you!” Tanner rasps. Kyson clicks his tongue and moves to his feet. Grabbing the top of his foot and his ankle, he yanked and twisted, turning his foot, so it was the wrong way. The bones break, and Tanner screams. Kyson lets his foot go moving to the next.
“What are they planning, Tanner? This will end when you tell me what I need to know,” Kyson growled.
Tanner laughs, the sound sadistic as he cackles his head off like this is some sort of joke.
“Has the storm stopped?” he asks before he chokes his own blood. I slap him, but he still chokes on his own blood, and Kyson quickly removes the silver strap holding his head in place before turning his face so he doesn’t choke before we get the information we need.
He spits the blood out and smiles wickedly as he dazedly looks up at the ceiling. “Pain, such a fickle thing. You won’t break me, my King!” he sneers at the last part before he laughs. Kyson growls menacingly, grabbing his other foot, about to break it.
“Oh, how she screamed, yet no sound came out. That is when you know you broke them,” he taunts, and I look at Kyson, my heart racing in my chest as the words spill from his lips.
“Plop,” he chuckles. “Just plopped right out at her feet.” Tanner laughs sadistically. The moment he said that, I knew exactly who he was talking about. Claire, he wanted Kyson to kill him, to put him out of his misery.
“Although, it even made me sick when she stuffed your nephew back in her. Like I knew she was unhinged, but she lost the plot. Completely lost it. Even made me sick. You should have seen the look on Claire’s face. Killing her mate. Now that was priceless.
F***ker didn’t stand a chance. She woke up as I drove that dagger through his chest. But her baby? She was dead the moment he fell at her feet. Almost as if her soul left her as she stared down at him.”
I washed the blood drain from Kyson’s face as his breathing got heavier, and fur sprouted across his arms as he tried to remain in control. I wanted nothing more than to kill the b*tard, but we needed information.
This piece of sh**t deserved more than we would give him, but I had to keep Kyson’s head in the game. “He’s baiting you, Kyson! He wants you to kill him!” I snap, gripping his wrist as his fingers go to wrap around his throat. Kyson was on autopilot, not realizing his finger began to encircle Tanner’s throat.
Tanner laughs and giggles. “That b**ch just couldn’t keep her mouth shut! Had to run to your sister when she caught Ester and me packing our deliveries to send to the council. She ran, she did.” he laughs.
“Who ran?” I demand, and my grip on his wrist tightens when I feel his hand start shaking, hovering above his throat.
“Marrissa! She moved into the castle and found Ester, didn’t she? I started plotting to out her, but then she had to go a step too far by following us. B**ch ran straight to Claire. Just couldn’t mind her own damn business! Had to get involved.”
“Claire, always the goody two shoes. Did everything by the book. She should have taken it straight to you. Instead, she confided in the council and asked to have a meeting with us the next morning. She had rung the council, and Crux gave us a little heads up. So we took care of it!” Tanner laughs.
Kyson’s other hand moves to grab him as a feral snarl leaves him, but I was expecting it, so I grip his hand before it comes down on his head, and he growls at me.
“Keep your f***king head or get out!” | snapped at him.
“The Hunters. What is their plan?” I demand before I start turning the handle on the rack. Stretching his limbs. Tanner screams as his body stretches.
“Plop,” Tanner laughs just as Liam wanders down the steps, whistling as he comes down.
“Storm has blown over. Wow! Look at you growing like the weed you are!” Tanner laughs at his words.
“I always did like you, Liam,” Tanner chuckles. Liam tilts his head to the side, and I twist the handle beside me. His body is forced to stretch, and his skin tears under pressure. His screams ring out loudly.
But still, he refuses to answer, and Kyson shoves Liam and me to the side, plunging his hand through his diaphragm. He fished through his innards, and Tanner gasped through the pain.
“Wait!” he rasps with his lips turning gray, and Kyson does.
“Where are they?” Kyson roared in his face as his eyes widened in horror, mouth open in a silent scream. Tanner smiles, his eyes fluttering and his eyes rolling in his head, and I know he is about to pass out or bleed out, whichever comes first.
Despite laying on his deathbed, he smiles, and my heart thumps erratically in my chest at his following words, “They‘re already here.” Tanner breathes.