"What the hell are you talking about?
I glance up into Vlad's face. Tears run silently down his cheeks.
What the fuck?
"This is Jemma Michaels live outside the DC Interpol office, where we have confirmation that Director, Hyde Monroe, will be addressing the public momentarily, concerning the reports of an Interpol helicopter being shot down a little over two hours ago."
I disentangle Shannon from around me, stepping toward the television. My eyes glued to the screen, a sinking sensation in my gut.
"Dad," Sorina says, grabbing my hand in a death like hold as we both zone in on the television.
No . . . it's not possible.
Hyde walks out of the building and stops behind the podium. He wipes his eyes with a white handkerchief, clearing his throat.
"At approximately five o'clock pm, an Interpol helicopter carrying two special operative agents was shot down shortly after taking off. The agents, Lily Williams and Dresden Scholl, were pronounced dead at the scene. Agent Williams and Agent Scholl headed a special division involving human trafficking. Interpol is investigating the incident. We will bring their killers to justice. That is all, no questions."
"No," I whisper as my chest heaves, pain coursing through me.
"Blake," Vlad says his voice distant.
He touches my arm and I shrug him off, staggering against the tray of alcohol sitting against the wall. "Not my Lily."
Sorina lets go of my arm, screams and sobs erupting from her throat. I'm vaguely aware of Sammi rushing to her. Spots disrupt my vision, a burning sensation gripping my throat. I wrap my hands around the edge of the cart, choking on my breath.
"No . . . not my Lily," I scream, twisting and heaving the cart at the wall, angry tears streaming down my face. "Not My Lily!" I turn and slam my fist into the wall. My body convulses as I sink to the floor, sobs escaping my lips.
I squeeze my eyes shut and see her face. The way her hair sprawled out behind her, the sapphire of her eyes shining after we made love. The way she used to tremble when I first met her. The sound of her voice as she sat at the piano. The way she trailed her fingers along my skin all the times we lay in bed.
It can't be true.
Delicate, thin arms wrap around my shoulders. I tangle my fingers in my hair and lean forward as my sister's cries mix with mine. Sorina drops in front of me, her arms snaking around my neck as she shakes violently. I absently encircle her with my arms, rocking back and forth as waves of pain move through me.
No . . . no . . . take me . . . Not my Lily . . . Dear God . . . not Lily . . .
Dresden and I sit, hand-in-hand, watching the security monitors. My knuckles are white from the force of my grip. There's a hole in my heart, growing bigger by the minute as Blake and Sorina crumble on the screen.
"What have we done?" I whisper, tears flowing down my cheeks.
"What we had to," Dresden says, sniffling.
This isn't any easier on him. I let go of his hand and push out of my chair. I lean against the desk, covering my face in my hands. This was the only way to protect them. The Taurus isn't after them . . . they haven't been for a while. They're after Dresden and me.
Our deaths brought us the one thing we need more than anything . . . time.
I'll never be able to make this up to them.
I sigh, the air stuttering as it crosses my lips.
Dresden looks at my left hand, his eyes widening.
"Is that an engagement ring?"
"Yes," I whisper.