Whispers in the Dark - Maya Banks

Maya Banks - KGI #4 - Whispers in the Dark

Whispers in the Dark (KGI #4)
Maya Banks

CHAPTER 1

SHEA Peterson’s eyelids flew open as she came instantly and fully awake. Her breath escaped in soft pants as agony crushed through her body. She went tense and her fingers curled into the tangled sheets at her sides.

She heard him again. Felt his despair in black, suffocating waves. She closed her eyes as his pain mingled with hers, lacing intricate patterns through her veins until they were merged, she a part of him.

Tonight more than any other time she felt his will to live dissolve. She felt his shame. The thought that he was a coward and didn’t deserve to die with honor.

Tears burned her eyelids. How long had she felt him suffer in silence? His strength had always amazed her, and now she could feel it crumbling under the weight of his despair. She hurt with him. She hurt for him.

She could no longer remain still. She could no longer remain silent despite the awful risk to herself and her sister, Grace. She couldn’t turn her back on this man. Not when his need was so great.

She drew in a deep breath, afraid and yet determined. She closed her eyes and reached out, following the trail of pain until she became hyperaware of the hell that he lived in.

The smell was pungent. She sucked in her breath as the scent of blood, dirt, sweat and death filtered through her nostrils.

Her instinct was to flee this place, break the link between her and the suffering man. Fear lodged in her throat, and pain was raw, sawing over her nerves.

In the distance, cries, grunts, muttered curses, a foreign language indecipherable to her. The man put a hand to his head. He knew something was different but he put it off as evidence of a losing battle for his sanity.

She huddled there, completely still in his mind, cautiously examining the surroundings through his senses.

He was imprisoned. A soldier. She caught fleeting images as they flashed through his head. His capture. The endless days of torture, starvation and misery.

He sat in a corner, his face in his hands, feelings of loathing and rage firing relentlessly through his brain. He hated his weakness, hated that he wanted to die. Hated that he wasn’t able to help the others who suffered with him.

He thought of his family. They brought comfort to him and yet he worried what his disappearance was doing to his parents and to his brothers. He thought constantly of his twin. Joe.

His name floated in Shea’s mind, spelled out in a flash of color before gradually fading away.

No one had come for him in two days. He felt a mixture of relief and dread because he knew that his reprieve would soon be over and he would suffer terribly once again. He wasn’t sure he had the strength to survive more. And he hated the weakness that made him question whether he preferred death to his continued existence. Caged like an animal.

He’d never felt so alone in his life.

Tears slipped down Shea’s cheeks, and she knew she could no longer be silent, no longer pretend she wasn’t connected to this man.

You aren’t alone. I’m here.

He went still, his head coming up as he stared through the piercing darkness. Despite his weakness and his broken-down spirit, the warrior within him immediately came to life. His muscles tensed and he turned, his nostrils flaring as if to scent the intruder.

“Who’s there,” he uttered in a cracked, hoarse voice.

Shhh. You don’t want to alert the others. Talk to me in