“Oh, Zo, you know you love me.” [Heath] winked at me and I couldn’t help smiling back at him.
“Fine. I love you.”
“What’sss happening…” the gross Elliott creature hissed.
That line both sums everything up and makes me laugh every time – it’s a win win.
This chapter picks up right where the last one left off [Matthew says: Like most House of Night chapters, because time doesn’t pass in this universe and everything that happens is condensed into a week or so per book.]
My face flamed with embarrassment as I pushed myself out of Heath’s arms, wiping my mouth and breathing hard. Stevie Rae was standing down the tunnel just a few yards from us. Tears still rained down her cheeks and her face was twisted in despair.
“Kill me,” she repeated on a sob.
I don’t blame her for desperately wanting out of this book. Poor Stevie Rae, she just wants everyone to stop treating her like a stereotype!
Zoey refuses, and she insists that Stevie Rae is still alive, so they can go home and figure everything out.
“I’m not me anymore. I did die, and part of me—the best part of me—is still dead, just like it is for the rest of them.” She gestured back at the cave-in.
The biggest mystery of the series has just become what the fuck was the best part of Stevie Rae? From where I’m standing she’s suddenly become way more likeable and interesting. Exhibit A:
“You’re not like they are,” I said firmly.
“I’m more like them than I am like you.” Her gaze shifted from me to Heath, who was standing quietly beside me. “You wouldn’t believe the awful things that go through my mind. I could kill him without a second thought. I would have already if his blood hadn’t been changed by the Imprint with you.”
“Maybe it wasn’t just that, Stevie Rae. Maybe you didn’t kill him because you really didn’t want to,” I said.
Her eyes found mine again. “No. I wanted to kill him. I still do.”
See? She’s way better already! Any self-respecting character in this story would want to kill Heath.
Heath then reveals that he was part of the reason the other two footballers were captured by the zombie ghosts. Dramatically, Heath explains the truth.
“Those things grabbed Brad and Chris because they were hanging around the House of Night, and that’s my fault because I’d told them how hot you are.”
Didn’t those guys have anything better to do? I know teenage boys are horny, but this seems like a fuck ton of effort to put into going to get a look at the sort-of-girlfriend of a friend. That is what pictures are for.
[Matthew says: Even stranger than how that was supposed to be a dramatic and believable reveal, Heath is suddenly a cold-blooded murderer:
“You should kill her. You should kill them all.”
THIS IS AN ACTUAL HEATH QUOTE, YOU GUYS. WHERE THE SHIT DID THAT COME FROM? This would be as jarring a shift in tone as if you replaced the little girl from Finding Nemo with Breaking Bad‘s Walter White.]
In the midst of the discussion about whether Stevie Rae should die, Stevie Rae suddenly proclaims that “she” is coming and dramatically reveals that Neferet is the one who is coming. Zoey acts shocked even though we figured this out ages ago when Elliot was drinking Neferet’s blood. [Matthew says: Or ages ago when Zoey “just knew” she couldn’t talk to Neferet when she got attacked by the creatures in the first book when that was the only course of action that would have made sense to the reader.] Derp de derp.
“Who are you talking about, Stevie Rae?”
The name blasted through me and even as I shook my head in denial I felt the truth of it deep within me. “Neferet did this to you, to all of you?”
“Yes. Now get out of here, Zoey!”
I think what Stevie Rae meant to say was, “Yes. Now get out of here, Zoey, before you force me to reveal more information that has actually already been revealed. Did you know that I’m southern? Or that Damien is gay? Or that Aphrodite is actually the best character in this series?”
Zoey tells Stevie Rae to remember her connection to her element and stay strong until they return for her. As they’re trying to escape Homeless Ghost Town, Zoey calls the police. This is the perfect opportunity for Heath to reference an old Verizon commercial because…why the fuck not?
I flipped open the phone and I swear my heart didn’t beat until the bars started to light up green.
“Can ya hear me now?” Heath said, grinning at me.
Before getting to safety, Neferet dramatically reveals herself from the shadows (actually).
Zoey feels the power of the elements “shimmer” around her (actually) and pretends she’s super relieved to see Neferet and asks if the detectives contacted her. She claims they thought a crazy street person was going to kill them (actually.) It seems like Neferet buys this bullshit (actually.)
Neferet has no choice but to mind crush Zoey and Heath.
I felt Heath go rigid as pain shot through my body. It blasted against my mind and my knees would have buckled had her hand not been like a vise, holding me up. “You will remember nothing!” The words echoed through my agony-filled mind, and then there was only darkness.