Redeeming Vows (Page 60)

Redeeming Vows (MacCoinnich Time Travel Trilogy #3)(60)
Author: Catherine Bybee

“Over there.” He pointed to the left. We’re almost there, Mom.

Thank God.

Is Fin awake yet?

She didn’t answer right away. No.

Ian reached Fin’s side first, followed by Cian.

Simon placed a hand on his mother’s back and watched.

“When we landed, he hit his head on a rock. Can you help him, Cian?”

“Or die trying,” he said before placing his hands over his brother’s head and calling his power.

Blue light pulsed and vibrated. The glow lit up the space around them. Simon felt his mom holding her breath, watched her eyes widen and her lips tremble. When Fin sucked in a deep breath and stared to move, Liz all but collapsed against Simon’s side. When Fin’s eyelids started to flutter, Liz pushed closer to him and wrapped her hands around his face. Cian sat back, giving her room.

“Are we home, love?” were his first words.

“You bastard, don’t you ever do that to me again!” Instead of the slap or punch or some such aggressive move Simon expected, he watched his mom lean over Fin and lay her head against his chest and sob. It was as if she had held in her worry until she knew he was safe.

Fin lowered his lips to the top of her head with a tenderness Simon had never seen from him before.

“Welcome home, son.”

“Hey,” Todd yelled out.

Everyone stilled.

“We have company.” Todd pointed to the east.

Simon’s eyes shifted and peered into the forest.

“There are three of them. Big men, carrying swords and splitting up.”

“How can you see them?”

Fin forced Liz from his frame and sat up. Cian pulled his sword from his waist.

“I can smell them, too. Blood, lots of it.”


“No. Others’ I think.” He knew it, but didn’t want to frighten his mother any more than she already was.

“They’re moving.” Simon stood and removed his shirt and kicked off his leggings and jumped to the sky.

“Jesus Christ that was fast,” Todd cried.

Simon, where are you going?

He silently flew above the men, noticed one pull an arrow from his pouch.

Duck! he yelled in his head.

His mom shouted his order aloud to the others just as the man let the arrow fly in the air.

Tell Todd there is one on his left hiding behind the biggest tree. Another is watching and waiting for you all to stand.

Liz couched on the balls of her feet and told the others his observations.

Where is the third?

Circling behind.

With his mom in the middle, Ian, Fin, Cian, and Todd placed their backs to her and stayed low. The man with the arrow drew closer.

One is coming up on you with the arrow. If Todd has his gun, now would be a good time to use it.

He has it.

Good! Can you see me? Simon flew in the air and circled the man below.


He’s right below me.

Todd scurried next to a tree, closer to their enemy, and hid behind it. Simon watched the others as they closed in on his family.


Todd swiveled from the safety of the tree, aimed his gun, and fired before the other man could react.

The blast in the air resulted in animals scurrying from their resting places, filling the forest with noise.

The man with the arrow flew back, the bullet caught in his shoulder.

Ian let out a warrior cry as a massive man charged him. Swords clashed. Cian held his sword ready to fight, Fin kept his back to his father watching for the other man.

Simon couldn’t see him. He flew to another perch, searching.


I can’t find the third guy anymore.

What about the one Todd shot?

He’s backing away. Coward.

But from the fierceness of Ian’s fight with the one man who charged, maybe the coward had the right idea.

When Ian’s blade ran through his opponent’s body, and before it fell to the forest floor, Simon heard the man utter, “Praise God!”

Then he saw the missing man, running to the west.

Once the men were out of sight, Simon swooped down, shifted, and said, “They’re gone.”

Ian stood over the body of the dead warrior.

Dressing as he walked closer, Simon stared down at the man. “He was being controlled by her.”

He told him what he heard the man say.

“I heard him, too.” Ian placed a hand on Simon’s shoulder as he spoke. There was no victory in the killing. Only sorrow for the soul lost at Grainna’s hand.


From the corner of the tent, Tatiana witnessed the reunion of two members of the family. Their hushed voices and frequent looks dug deep in her soul. Why was she still there? What was Grainna’s plan? Simon shifted like Grainna.

The thought brought fear, but understanding as well. Grainna feared these people. Their collective power must be greater than hers.

Yet they didn’t wield it to master or control others.

Cian didn’t look her way. He kept his back to her. She couldn’t send him any blame. It was she who was wrong.

Resting her head in her hands, Tatiana tried not to listen to the others, although with nothing distracting her, she heard much of what they said.

“I spoke with Mom.”

“You’re kidding?”

The newest arrival, Liz, shook her head. “No.

You wouldn’t believe how sad she was. She told me to send her love. Can you believe that?”

Tatiana glanced to the sisters talking. Had they endured a childhood of pain like hers?

“And Dad?”

“Dad’s an ass**le. A real twit. You should have heard Mom tell him off.”

The women laughed through what must have been a painful reality. At least they had one parent who cared and each other to turn to.

Their voices lowered, making it difficult to understand their words. Her gaze fell on Finlay, who looked so much like his older brother Duncan that up close they could have come from their mother on the same day of birth.

“Jake told me to give you these.”


“He risked his own freedom to help us.”

“Jake was like a brother to me. I’d have done the same for him.”

Tatiana lowered her eyelids, her mind drifted.

She shivered and pressed her aching head into her palms. Cold slammed into her senses. She jumped to her feet, forcing several of the others to jump as well.

Tatiana held her head, nausea rushed from her stomach to her throat. “Nay.”

“What is it?”

She covered her ears with her hands. “Don’t say anymore. I hear ye all.”