Conflicted Affection

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25

"Vic--!" Alex's shout stops and a loud bang begins.

"We told ya' we'd get ya'!" Mr. Hilton!

"Come on!" Max appears before me, untying my hands, "Untie the rest! I gotta get Ryland!" He runs toward the other side of the room and dissapears in the shadows.

I begin untying myself, somewhat wishing I could dissapear. But the rest of that wish is shadowed by my fear and frantic untying of knots.

When I'm done, someone grabs my hand and drags me toward the door. We, shockingly, escape with little problems--wait, no I'm thinking of a different situation. No, no, no. That is not how it went. When I found my footing, I was caught by the leg. I know, just my luck.

I hear growling and see blood pour out of the hand that grabbed me. The person screams in pain and removes his hand, "That mutt bit me!" There's Alex.

I don't bother with who it was, I simply run as fast as possible. No one comes after me, up until I get into the street. A snake covers my leg and travels toward my neck as a female lion holds me down. I assumed someone would come and help with all the houses around, but they didn't. Everyone went back into their houses, closed their blinds, or simply turned away in a poker face.

The snake wraps itself tightly around my throat while the lion reaches down slowly with a look of hunger. Drool from the lions open mouth hits my face and I grunt in disgust and pain.

My vision goes blurry as the snake tightens its hold. All I can hear is the heavy breathing of the lion getting closer and the heat of its breath suffocating me even quicker.

I feel as if I'm going to vomit. Though, even if it was needed, I couldn't do it. The snake is too tight around my neck. I feel the world slipping away from me and I wish I didn't say what I did to Ryland. But, I fear its too late. I suppose it doesn't matter now, he said it himself, we're over.

I finally give up fighting. I let go and allow the snake to fully suck the breath out of my body. I just hope I die before the lion strikes me.

***

Ryland's POV:

This can't be it! Victoria can no longer choke him and I know it hasn't been long enough to kill him! There's no way he is dead! Victoria's lion assistant didn't bite him, I bit her neck before she could. Maybe I did something while trying to get Victoria off his neck...

But...that can't be. I couldn't have killed him... Sure, I said some hurtful things, but I didn't want to kill him! He is still my mate...or was?

"Dillan, wake up! Open your eyes! Come on... Please?" I beg, looking at his pale face. His pale face.

"Dillan..." I feel my eyes begin to burn as I try to shake him awake. "Come on!" I yell, shaking him harder than ever.

I feel a hard on my shoulder, making me jerk and hit whoever it is. "Whoa! Ryland, lets go..." I hear Max say.

"No!" I can't stop the tear from coming this time. "Don't act like you understand! Go away!" I yell at him and push him away.

I hear him growl, "Listen--"

"What?!" I shout while sobbing.

"We're taking him with us... We won't leave him here, I promise. I won't let them. Come on, I'll help you carry him." Max says with a kind voice despite his recent growl.

I sniff and pick up his body, holding it tight to me. Max puts his hands under my armpits and helps me to my feet, then holds Dillan's legs in his arms and walks with me toward Mr. Hilton's black jeep commander.

With the many hours of driving, all I do is hold onto Dillan. I feel a pat on the shoulder and look up to find Sean giving me a sad smile.

"We'll figure it out, Ry." He hasn't called me that in forever.

I feel a hug from beside me. Max never gives hugs. "Max..." I begin.

"Yeah?"

"I don't think they know that my mom is a human... They said I was a disgrace because of..."

"Yeah... I don't know. We can ask your dad when we get home if you want." He suggests.

"I don't know if I want to talk that much..." I bury my face into Dillan's pale caramel-colored neck.

"We don't have to." I hear Lela say.

I hold Dillan tighter. His skin feels cold. I put my hand on his chest and feel a faint beating. Hope floods my body and my heart beats fast.

"His heart's beating!" I shout.

The car stops in the middle of the deserted forest road. As if on cue, Dillan begins gasping and coughing frantically.

"Water!" I shout.

Mr. Hilton throws me a bottle of water and I prop Dillan up. I wait for his coughs to calm down a little before pouring it into his mouth. It makes him cough more, at first, but then he calms down once more.

"Thanks..." Dillan says hoarsely.

"I'm glad you're okay..." I say to him and hug him gently.

"I'm glad your okay too." Dillan chuckles softly.

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