Chapter 1

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Like a kid who couldn't resist the last piece of chocolate, I wrapped my hand around the bars of my cage. A freaking cage! It only took a second for the searing pain to register—red-hot burning. I snatched my hand away, swallowing the scream at the back of my scratchy throat. Hours of screaming taught me two things. One: no one could hear me. The damn dungeon was probably soundproof. And two: it was entirely Chase's fault.


My hand was on fire. It felt like the flesh was literally melting off the bone. I glanced down to examine the extent of my injury, cursing Chase Winters to a hundred different kinds of hell. Redness bubbled along my slim fingers, the skin burning like a bitch. "Damn it," I hissed, cradling my hand. The upside, in an hour it would hardly be noticeable, just one of the many perks from being mutated by Chase Winters.

My egotistical, self-righteous, determined-to-make-me-miserable boyfriend, who also happened to be a half-demon.

Pain and anger whirled through me, a potent cocktail.

So many changes were reeling through my body. I didn't know exactly what was going on inside, but for once it didn't cause me physical pain. Oh, just the opposite. It was like an addict, begging and pleading for more, dying to be released.

Each bond Chase and I fortified had mutated the cells in my body. We hadn't known at the time what the outcome would be, and truthfully, I think we'd both been powerless to stop the forces of Hell. It was inevitable. Chase had saved my life, but by doing so, forged a link with my soul—a link that connected me not to just him, but to his bloodline—to Alastair—his demon father. My humanity had been pretty much doomed from that moment. The closer we got, the deeper our bonds and the darker my humanity became.

Man, I sure knew how to pick them.

A strangled laugh bubbled out. "Chase." His name echoed against the dirty gray concrete walls. The jerk was going to pay. Who did he think he was, locking me up like an animal? I was supposed to be the love of his life. What a freaking joke. Why did it matter that I suddenly embraced the dark side? Had I not accepted him as he was? All the flaws (not that there were many), all the danger, and the near death experiences. Now he just stopped caring.

Bull crap. I didn't buy it.

He was whipped and would do anything to save his precious Angel. It was the sole reason I was in this current predicament. Things had gotten...complicated. I wasn't precisely sure how things had gotten so out of hand. There were dark patches in my memories, but really, why did I care about the how? It was where I was going that mattered. And I had a purpose. Being contained in a demon version of Alcatraz was not how I envisioned spending my first year of college.

Plopping down on a small bed in the corner, the lumpy mattress dug into my butt. I squirmed, trying to find a comfortable position, and finally gave up. No amount of wiggling was going to make this sad excuse of a bed comfortable. I guess I should have been thankful he didn't make me sleep on the floor.

There had to be a way to get to him. I just needed to appeal to his sappy side, because I didn't see another way out of this godforsaken contraption the hunters had constructed. Leave it to a bunch of whacked-out-of-your-mind demon hunters to possess advanced yet archaic torture chambers.

The metal was a blend of titanium and amber. At least I thought it was amber. The flecks of gold reminded me of Chase when his demon prevailed his humanity. I eyed the perimeter with my newly enhanced eyeballs, desperate for a small crack in its defense, and to my utter dismay, I found nothing. Nada. Zilch. Zippo.

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