~ Lily ~
Without thinking, I swat his hand away when he reaches toward my face. Holding my breath, I freeze, waiting for the first strike to come. He gives me a raised brow instead and actually smiles. Somehow that scares me more than if he had struck me. He reaches out again, this time it takes everything I have not to flinch. Instead of touching my cheek, however, he reaches for my hair. With a quick movement, he flicks it back and takes hold of my ear, slowly tracing its outline. His hands are large and rough, but his touch is gentle. I start to shiver, not so much from the rain and cold, but from fear.
Removing his hand, he stares down at me, “Don’t worry, Princess. I promise not to hurt you as long as you do as I say."
~ Tharin ~
I glance over at Julia as she continues to argue with Tolan. She has placed an invisible barrier distancing her from Tolan with each second that passes between them. She was the first to let go when we came through the doorway and immediately started calling for Lily. When I finally admitted to myself that Lily was nowhere near us, I found myself in this spot trying to calm my thoughts and search for Lily through the drift state. Not Julia, she continued to search frantically with Tolan close behind her. She fought him, lashing out even harder than when she first met him. She refused to give up, until Tolan had no other choice but to physically restrain her until she was able to calm down. Once she was calmed, Tolan convinced her we would find Lily, but we had to use our heads. He asked that she give us time to try and track Lily and Ziri, but each time she called out to Lily it would only let Ziri know our location. When she agreed, he released her. They’ve been arguing since. She wanted to know how we would track them in this rain, but most importantly, who Ziri was and why he took Lily.
The Drifting, Book 2 of The Velesi Trilogy