Page 27 of The Demon in Him

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He lifted a large shoulder, and I took that to be an agreement.

Nikki was my little sister, whom my father, Mitch Murphy, had doted on right up until he was murdered. He had kept my dear sister in the dark about the true nature of his business, and for the longest time, she believed him to be an upstanding citizen in the community. Even when that illusion was snatched away, she continued to seek out his killer in her spare time, although with less enthusiasm than she did years ago when she had believed him to be a good man.

He treated me like hell and her as an angel.

My revenge on my sister took a back seat while I was working underneath Emrick, biding my time, letting him do what he did best—build up the empire—while I planted seeds of doubt in his leadership which would eventually flourish enough to bring him down. Then I would be waiting to take back what was mine—my father’s business that Emrick had stolen.

But that hadn’t gone quite to plan, and I had returned underground, taking a couple of months to rally those I could trust to follow me blindly against him. Emrick was strong, within the business and without, and I would need backup if I were to go after him. I was a patient man and had waited over a decade for what was rightfully mine, and with the new and exciting development, taking down Emrick had been moved to a back burner to my new plan.

Because my ex-lover, my severed partner, Mike, had done what I thought he never would.

He started another bond.

I had seen the flash of faces, of flesh on flesh when blood met saliva, and he took the first step for another human-demon bond. Fuck, I didn’t think he had it in him. Mike was so convinced all my darkness and everything that made me who I was, was his fault because of the bonding. The truth was I had taken the strength he offered and used it to become the best or worse—depending on who you were asking—version of myself.

I genuinely thought he would stay away from bonding again, but evidently, I’d been wrong.

So now I was faced with a wonderful opportunity. Before I took down Emrick, I could torture the two people I hated most in the world—Nikki and Mike.

Nikki, for being the apple of my father’s eye, who saved all his violence and cruelty for me.

And Mike, for abandoning me, giving me the power and then hating me when I used it, being a coward, and not at all the demon I thought he was. He’d given me these powers, the strength and life force of a demon, and then treated me as though I’d been poisoned when hewasthe poison, and I was the best combination of human and demon and simply used it to my benefit.

If he weren’t so weak, he would have used it too, and we could have been a hell of a pair. Instead, I was subjected to the pain and lifelong scars of a severed bond because he couldn’t stand the sight of me and was so desperate to get away from what I was to him—a reminder that he was still a demon and had made me so—that he would subject us both to that pain.

Earl could grab Nikki and keep her until I was ready and maybe make a little extra trouble for Emrick while he was at it and send Nikki’s demon lover to him instead of me.

And I would find Mike’s new lover boy and torture Mike by taking his life in front of him.

Then I’d kill Mike too.


Ray and Ilsa. They’d hate the term bounty hunters, but that was essentially the reputation they had earned themselves. A demon and her human-bonded mate used their time, connections, and skills to track down demons who are new to life on Earth and perhaps haven’t quite learned the rules of a socially acceptable existence yet.

Or didn’t care.

I was almost certain Ilsa had been in touch with the werewolf community. Ray wouldn’t be able to get within thirty feet of them before they’d attack her. Ray let her demonic instincts run her, and it was only her human partner, Ilsa, who kept her in check. But Ray had done something different. While she’d come to Earth intent on causing chaos and destruction, using her twisted logic to convince herself she was doing the right thing by humans and God, she’d changed.


Demons weren’t good at learning the error of our ways, which is why so many who stayed on Earth were involved in the underground crime circuit. It was in our nature, and criminal activity allowed us to be who our instincts wanted us to be.

Ilsa was convinced that more demons could learn to functionwithhumans if only they had the right guidance. Something the weres were not convinced of, but they must have agreed to give her at least a bit of space, especially with the lower-end offenders. Because these women had gotten themselves a reputation, and they were good at what they did.

But there was something else I needed them for, something they were equally as good at, although didn’t want to make a business from it.

Tracking and security.

Both of which I needed right now.

Because Tateknew.

I had seen his face in my mind the second Jacob’s tongue had touched my blood.

Fuck.I was so fuckingstupidto let that happen. Caught up in the moment with Jacob, who made me feel things I had long since forgotten what it was like to experience, and fueled by these emotions, my demon had demanded the bond.

Now, TateknewI had started another bonding. Although our bond was severed, there would always be a thin connection, a tiny rope binding us together across any distance, and he would feel a new bonding of mine as I would ifheever bonded again.