King of the Underworld by RJ Kane Chapter 224

Chapter Two Hundred Twenty-Four 

Sephie 

I put on the warmest clothes | had at the house and was still cold, even after the hot showwer Adrik walked out of the closet with a sweatshirt. “Here, solnishko. Put this on. It will help. Let’s go get you something warm to drink, ton,” he said. He waited for me to pull his sweatshirt on, then grabbed my hand pulling me toward the door. “Do you want some tea?” he asked on our way down the stairs. 

“The only tea I really like is what I use to sleep and I don’t want to sleep right now. Coffee sounds good, though. If nothing else, it might make me hyper enough that I warm myself up from not being able to sit still,” I said as I jumped down the stairs behind him, laughing. 

“That seems like a good life choice for you right now,” he said, shaking his head at my shenanigans. “I will make you some coffee, love.” He stopped at the bottom of the stairs, pulling me to him to kiss me. 

“This is why you’re my favorite,” I said, smiling against his lips. “You don’t have to worry about not telling the others, though. They already know, trust me. It’s not a secret.” 

He laughed, wrapping his arms around me. “I love you, Sephie.” 

“Is it because you’re looking forward to me having endless energy later? Because I’d love me for that too,” I asked, laughing 

He cursed under his breath. I could see where his mind was going “I’m going to make your coffee extra strong,” he said, a devilish grin on his face. 

“Challenge accepted.” 

Viktor was in the kitchen when we walked in. Adrik asked him what he’d missed while we were at the lake As they were talking 

business and Adrik was making coffee, I walked to the back room to see who was there. The storm was still going strong outside and I wanted to watch the lightning as well. The back room had the best windows in the whole house, 

Ivan and Misha were on the couches when I walked in. “Where’s Bubba and Yoden?” I asked as I walked to the windows to watch the storm clo uds outside. I pulled my hands in the too-long sleeves and crossed my arms across my chest, trying to stay warm. I heard Ivan click his tongue, but he didn’t say anything, he just got up and walked toward their rooms. 

Misha answered, “they’re playing video games. They’re playing against Keith and Chris right now.” 

I looked at him, grinning. “Do I need to ask who is winning?” 

“Only if you’ve hit your head recently and have no clue what’s going on around you,” he said, laughing. 

Ivan walked back in with a beanie in his hand. He walked up to me, pulling it on my head. “Princess, you have to keep your head warm if you expect the rest of you to stay warm” I had braided my hair when we got out of the shower, because I just didn’t feel like dealing with having to dry it again. Ivan picked my still damp braid up and said, “especially if your hair is still wet.” He smacked me lightly with my braid as he went to the couch again. 

Adrik walked in with a steaming cup of coffee, handing it to me. He had one in his hand as well, which made me smirk at him. He couldn’t help but grin at me as he took a sip. I felt my cheeks flush. In an effort to distract myself from thoughts of what was going to happen later, I asked, “how bad was your phone while we were gone?” 

“Not terrible, but I do have a couple of phone calls I need to return. It shouldn’t take too long,” he said. He was looking over 

the beanie that Ivan had put on me. “Are you still cold, solnishko?” he asked. His eyes were still amused. 

“How are you not?” I asked, surprised that he wasn’t cold in the feast. 

He clicked his tongue. “Drink your coffee. It will help. I’ll be back soon,” he said. He leaned down, his lips close to my ear. “I have an idea to make you warm again. Several ideas.” He lightly brushed his short facial hair against my cheek, then kissed my cheek, making my mind race about what exactly he had planned later. He saw me bite my bottom lip and smirked at me before. leaving with Viktor. 

I stood by the windows, watching the storm and drinking my extra strong coffee for a few minutes. The lightning was almost constant. It was beautiful to watch. 

“It doesn’t make you nervous to be standing by the window while the sky is basically on fire, gazelle?” Misha asked. 

I turned toward him, already feeling the effects of the caffeine boost. “Nope. My m om told me I was born in the middle of a storm like this. I’ve always been fascinated by them.” 

Ivan looked surprised. “My m om told me the same thing.” 

“It’s why you’re both all feisty and shi t,” Misha said, looking between Ivan and me. His wide, handsome smile stretched across his face. 

“Did your m om tell you that children born in storms should never fear the dark because the light is always with them?” I asked Ivan. 

“She did not. She did, however, tell me to stop breaking bones. She did that quite a lot,” he said. 

“I can imagine you were barely contained as a child, Super Squish.” I looked at Misha, who was still smiling. “And you, my adorable Russian guardian, I’m convinced you got away with murder because you were so adorable. Your poor mothers,” I said, shaking my head, but smiling at the thought of both of them as rowdy little kids. I turned back to look out the windows. A giant streak of lightning stretched across the sky, immediately followed by a second, even brighter streak across the sky and a loud crack of thunder. It was so loud that I didn’t hear Misha get up from the couch. I felt his hands on my shoulders pulling me back from the windows. 

“You make me nervous, gazelle. Maybe don’t stand so close to the windows while the sky is angry,” he said. He walked back to the couch, sitting once more. 

“Which one of you is warmer?” I asked, walking closer to the couches. “Never mind. I’ll run my own experiment,” I said, sitting beside Misha. I curled up next to him as he threw his arm over my shoulders. 

“Are you still cold, gazelle?” he asked. I just put my cold hand on his face, laughing at his reaction. 

Andrei and Stephen walked in as I was still laughing at Misha. “Spider monkey, you look like you’re frozen,” Andrei said, plopping down on one of the couches. Stephen, in his normal quiet way, walked to the kitchen. 

“Not completely frozen. Slightly thawed, but not room temperature yet,” I said. “I’m currently conducting research to find out which one of you is the warmest. Misha’s data set is looking like the low end so far.” He wrapped his other arm around me and then threw one of his legs over me as well, trying to help me warm up. He stayed like that for a few minutes, with me laughing. trapped underneath him. “Not helping.” I pushed him off me and moved next to Ivan. He threw his giant arm over my shoulders as I curled up next to him. “Warmer than Misha.” 

“Hey, I warmed you up by making you laugh. It should count,” Misha said, feigning outrage. 

“I’ll make mention of it in the results section of my report,” I said, grinning at him. I looked at Andrei, asking, “did Keith and Chris get tired of getting virtually killed by you and Yoden?” 

He chuckled, nodding his head. Stephen walked to one of the couches, saying, “I’m going to be saving their as ses for a while.” 

“That bad, huh?” 

“Let’s just say it’s a good thing it was a video game and not real life,” Stephen said. 

“Ouch,” I said. Ivan really was much warmer than Misha. I found myself moving closer to him, trying to finally get warm. Andrei noticed me moving and opened his arms to me. “Come here, spider monkey. I’m always hot.” I grinned at him as I got up and moved next to him as he threw his giant arm around my shoulders. “Warmer than Ivan. This explains why you’re totally fine in a t-shirt right now,” I said. 

“Told you. I’m always hot,” Andrei said, 

“Me ntal note taken, Bubba,” I said as I moved closer to Andrei. I finished my coffee and was almost warm again. Almost. We stayed quiet for a few minutes, listening to the thunder rumble outside. It was still loud. It sounded like the storm was sitting directly above us, not moving. Andrei really was quite warm and I finally felt my body start to relax next to him. My mind. wandered back to the week we’d all had. I glanced at each of them, asking, “how do you guys cope after you’ve killed somebody?” Andrei’s giant arm held me tighter. They all looked at me, knowing looks on their faces.

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