Her entire body froze. Not again! Her mind screamed. Certainly she had screamed it to the world. It sounded so loud in her head. Her arms felt like lead at her sides. She couldn’t move. She couldn’t breathe. All she could do was focus on the blade.
Swallowing down the lump in her throat she dragged in a deep breath. “I can feel you trembling for me, Cameron. I knew you’d come around to my way of thinking.”
No! Her mind screamed again, but her lips remained stubbornly silent and her body useless. A horrifying cold seemed to eat at her from the inside out. Her blood, her lungs, they felt like they were seizing. She gasped as the panic clawed up from her throat and all she could release was a whimper.
Lucas drew her closer, flicking the edge of the blade along her throat, to the underside of jaw. “I hate giving you these lessons, Cameron. Why do you continue to make me hurt you? We could have been so happy.”
Her knees buckled and the knife bit into her flesh. Through the aching cold, she could feel the slow, seeping trickle of her own blood. Her fingers finally worked, curling around his wide wrist, clawing at him as she felt droplet arrow down the long column of her neck and lower to pool into the little divot at the center of her collar bone.
She didn’t remember whimpering, but she must have and Jon must have heard her. His voice cut through the ice, strong, sure and steely. “What kind of man forces a woman anyway?”
Lucas stilled behind her. “I don’t need to force a woman, I just need to show her the correct way.”
“Right, forcing her, because you’re not man enough to let her have her own mind. Only a real man would know that a woman’s brain is just as sexy as the outside package. And a Stepford Wife isn’t really a wife at all, just a living doll. Perhaps you can’t handle a real woman,” he said thoughtfully.
Jon started moving slowly. “Is that the deal? A real woman scares you?”
“Stay where you are Mr. Bon Jovi.” Lucas’ voice wavered only slightly. “Clever of you to try the psychology bit,” his voice strengthened. “Perhaps you are just a little more than a stupid rockstar, but it’s too late for Cameron. She’s been tainted. I’m just here to tie up some loose ends.” He nuzzled her neck and she had to swallow back the acid burning its way up her throat. “It’s too bad, she was nearly perfect.”
Her eyes focused as Jon made it to the end of the bed where the bench was tucked up to the footboard. Lucas had looked away for a second and the firelight was on his side. He snatched the chenille throw with the decorative string-like ends and snapped it like a wet towel.
It was just enough to startle Lucas as the end whipped along his cheek. Jon threw his shoulder into a tackle.
The light was limited on this side of the bed, but Lucas was larger than Jon. She heard the curse as he landed a blow and Jon growled into the dark. She crawled to the door, terror blindsiding her. She didn’t know what to do. She couldn’t see.
Her fingers found the axe handle. She lifted it, swinging like a bat at the larger of the two forms and felt the crack of bone against wood as Lucas cried out. She swung again, glancing off his temple as he went down.
“Jon! Are you okay?” her voice was too high, she could feel the hysteria building. “Oh please, tell me I didn’t hit you.”
“No Sammy Sosa, you didn’t.”
A choked laugh bubbled into the panic and she crawled to him. He gathered her into his arm, dragging them both away from Lucas. “Oh God, you are stupid,” she said on a shaky laugh.
He held his ribs as he tucked her under his arm. “Yeah well, I have three younger brothers that like to beat on me. I’ll be fine.”
“Did he cut you?” she asked as she began patting him down. Her fingers smoothed over the bristly jaw to his neck to his shoulders, until he stilled her wandering hands.
“I’m okay.” They both jumped as Lucas rolled onto his back. “Go!” Jon pushed her past Lucas. “We have to get out of here.” They both scrambled down the stairs, they could hear him moving around. Swearing as he discovered them both gone. “Hurry,” Jon said in a stage whisper.
The snowfall blanketed the surrounding beach and had already piled onto Lucas’ car. It would take too long to uncover it. Jon stomped into his workboots and tossed her sneakers at her. “C’mon. We have to make it to the Ranger station around the bend.”
“Cameron!” Lucas bellowed from the stairs, thundering down them.
She screamed as the iridescent light of a sky of full of snow showed his face. Blood flowed down half his face where she’d cracked him with the axe handle and there was a madness there.
He wasn’t going to let her live through this.