Home > Tragic Bonds (The Bonds That Tie #5)(6)

Tragic Bonds (The Bonds That Tie #5)(6)
Author: J Bree

My bond is relieved to finally have him in our presence and happily shows him the way to our secret cargo, lighting up like a beacon to take him all the way into the depths of my stomach where Nox’s soul is hiding, safe and secure.

Felix's hand snatches away from mine as he gasps, his eyes still white. When I open mine back up, I stare back at him, my eyes a complete juxtaposition of his where they’ve voided out.

Then, without hesitation, he leans over to shove Nox’s shirt up his body.

I want to cry with relief, squeezing my eyes shut as I feel Felix’s Gift leave my body and force its way inside of Nox’s empty shell.

I’m the only one who seems to feel that way.

“You can't heal a corpse, Davenport! Stop that right now, or I’ll have your medical license taken off of you,” Payne screeches, and my bond rears up furiously in my chest, so close to reaching out and destroying him.

But Felix snaps back before it has to, “It's not a corpse, it's a vessel,” and shoves his hands against Nox's clammy, white, dead skin a little harder like he’s trying to get the heart beating again through a massage or something.

I still don’t like him being touched like this.

“Vessel? What the fuck does that even mean?” Atlas snaps, and my bond turns my head to stare him down.

It speaks again, using my voice, but there’s no doubt whose words they are. “I will not lose my Bonded. He has to fix the vessel.”

Gryphon turns his head just enough to look at me, and the bond and I both watch as the cogs in his brain slowly put it together, cursing under his breath. “You have his soul. You have his soul, and Felix has to fix Nox’s body so you can put it back in there.”

My bond speaks once more. “I will not lose my Bonded.”

Clearly Payne is the only person in the room who doesn’t understand what it means that my bond is talking, and he attempts to stop Felix again. “Davenport, I just told you—”

Felix cuts him off. “Take it. I’ll go without a medical license, and I’ll work exclusively for the Draven Bonded Group and my own, because I'm sure that none of them will give a shit that I'm ignoring you and fixing the fucking vessel.”

Atlas moves forward a little to look at Felix’s glowing hands where they meet on Nox’s chest. “Can you do it? Do you actually think you can fix him? Fuck, this is insane, what even is a vessel anyway?”

I can see that Felix is trying to push his power into Nox's body, but it doesn't want to do much. “I’m calling him that because Oli's bond was calling it that. I don’t understand the semantics of it, but her bond is currently housing Nox's soul inside of her, keeping it alive and safe, and we need to fix the vessel to put it back into it.”

Again, every eye in the room turns to me, but all I can focus on is the glow around his hands that doesn’t seem to be spreading or doing much right now.

Is it going to be too late?

“Can you do this, Felix?” I ask, and even though my bond is still in control, there's no question that it's my voice coming out of my body at the moment.

He swallows roughly. “I don't know. It's true that I can't heal a corpse, but to put Nox's soul back in before we've healed some of the damage… I don't know, Oli. This isn’t something that I have any experience with, and I’m winging it but… I have to try.”

It's a very reasonable thing to say, and I can't argue with it.

The longer we watch him struggle to force his power to do what he wants it to do, the more frustrated my own bond gets until finally, I feel it release control of my body again as it goes back into the pit of my stomach after Nox's bond.

I feel my heart breaking inside of my chest as though it is a physical thing. To think that we've gotten this close to bringing him back and failing, failing with everyone in the room watching us and knowing what we were trying to do, is an indescribable pain. The tears that had dried up start flowing down my cheeks again.

Now isn't the time to cry, girl. Now is the time for something big.

I swallow and shut my eyes again, ready to listen to my bond and hear whatever it is that it’s going to direct me to do, trusting it in ways that I don’t even trust myself.

Except then it moves my hand onto Nox's chest, breaking that boundary I had been so careful in respecting, my skin touching his. Before I have the chance to snatch it away or berate my bond for doing so, it shoves its way through the connection, pulling not only Nox’s soul, but mine and my bond itself into his body, sealing us inside of a corpse, and then everything goes dark.



Time slips away from me.

I don’t know how long I’m out, or where the hell my soul is, except that suddenly I’m in a living room. I glance around, disoriented, but I don't recognize the house or any of the furnishings I’m staring at.

I can feel that this is a memory, a sensation that I can’t really describe beyond that, but it takes me a moment to realize that it’s not my own. Every part of it feels familiar and alien at the same time.

It belongs to my Bonded.

This is something that’s been burned into Nox’s soul, something vital and so intrinsic to who he is that I'm watching it in high definition.

It takes me a moment to realize that while I don't have a body in this memory, I can still direct my vision to where I want it to go, and I find a little boy sitting next to me in a living room in a very luxurious house.

He’s very obviously my Bonded. The dark curls falling like a little crown around his head make my chest ache. He looks paler than I’m used to, more subdued as he stares down at his feet. He’s deathly still, I have to really focus on him to see his chest gently rising as he breathes, and there aren't the slightest signs of him fidgeting or twitching.

He’s so young to be sitting so still.

I glance around to see what could possibly have him so scared, because there’s no doubt in my mind that fear is the only thing that can make a child act like this.

There's no questioning that we’re in a Draven mansion.

Not the one that we’d spent so much time in before fleeing to the Sanctuary, but the levels of wealth and luxury in every inch of the space is a clear indicator for the family.

It's also very clear to me that I’m right, and the boy sitting next to me is definitely Nox and not North.

The brothers have always looked incredibly similar to me, similar enough that it probably should be much harder to distinguish them as children, but I know without a doubt who it is that’s sitting with me. The more that I look around the room, the more concerned that I am.

There are dozens of pictures framed on various different surfaces, all of them in platinum frames or gilded with gold, and some of them go as far as having diamonds and other precious stones in them.

All of them show North and his parents.

There’s no sign of Nox in this room.

I know that the brothers share the same father, the Central Bond in their family Bonded Group, but that they have different mothers. Regardless, it’s alarming that there’s no signs of the youngest sibling or the other Bonded from the Bonded Group in any of them.

My own family photos had always had a mixture of me and my mother and all of her Bonded in them, everyone taking an interest in how I was raised and being a part of my life. I never questioned my place in the family or whether I was loved equally by the adults who were all parenting me in their different ways.

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