“Rena!” A strong hand curled around her shoulder and shook her gently. “Hey, are you all right?”
Rena blinked rapidly as the fog of the vision lifted and the world around her came back into sharp focus. Zander’s worried gaze was the first thing she saw. Pat and Dino stood right behind him with equally concerned expressions.
The dragon was gone, but the voice was the same. Zander was definitely the dragon, but that was crazy, wasn’t it?
People couldn’t turn into dragons.
Hell, the damn things weren’t even real.
Rena’s gift allowed her to slip into the past and visit the memories of other people, but how the hell could that scenario have been one of Zander’s memories?
There was no such thing as dragons.
Yeah right. And there was no such thing as getting visions either.
“You okay, sweetie?” Dino had his arm around Patricia’s waist, and he wiped his sweaty, balding head with his free hand. “It’s like you were sleeping with your eyes open or something.”
Rena sucked in a shuddering breath and tried to appear more confident than she felt. Coming out of her visions was never a problem, but she rarely took the chance in front of other people. She scolded herself for the foolhardy move and forced a smile.
“Musta been getting her hands on all that dough.” Patricia let out a weak laugh. “Right?”
Rena blinked and then looked down at her lap. The brick of cash was clenched tightly between her fingers. Her face heated with embarrassment, and she promptly put it back on the table.
“Musta been,” Zander murmured.
His palm, warm and rough, slipped from her bare arm as he slowly rose to his feet with an expression on his face that hovered between concerned and curious.
Damn it. This was mortifying. At least she hadn’t fainted or fallen out of her chair or anything.
“Jeez, doll,” Patricia snorted. “You were, like, totally spaced-out. Again.”
“Again?” Zander asked. “This sort of things happens a lot?”
“Pfft, yeah it does. She usually gets one of her crazy hunches after she spaces out like that. Don’t ya?”
“Patricia,” Rena said in a warning tone. “I’m fine. I-I was just thinking about something.”
“Uh-huh.” Pat gave her a skeptical look. “I thought you were gonna go see the doctor about that spacing-out stuff. I told you it could be seizures or something. I saw a documentary all about it.”
Rena let out a small laugh and some of the tension in the room eased back. Patricia loved documentaries about weird medical problems. Maybe Rena should ask her if she ever watched one about dragons and psychics.
“I’m fine.” Rena pushed the hair off her forehead and adjusted her position in the chair. “Really.”
“Are you sure?” Zander asked quietly. He sat in the chair across from her. “You were definitely…elsewhere.”
“Yes. I’m sure.” She waved her hand dismissively. “I’m just tired. I haven’t been sleeping well lately.”
Rena stilled and her eyes locked with his.
Son of a bitch.
Somehow this man knew about her gift or her dreams or something.
Then again, after what she saw in his memories, why would that surprise her? Not only had she dreamed of him, but she was also seeing him as a dragon in his memories. This was too damn weird.
She had absolutely no idea what was happening, but she was sure as hell going to find out.
“Maybe you should go home,” Patricia said, “and get some sleep.”
“You’re right, Pat. I’ve got a big week ahead.” She grabbed the brick of cash and quickly put it in her purse. “As of tomorrow, Mr. Lorens and I will be on our way to Montana.”
“What made you change your mind?” His voice was quiet and gruff. “Was it the money or…something else?”
His eyes searched hers and a spark of awareness flickered in the air between them. A connection. A sputtering moment where one soul recognized the other. But like a flame in the wind, it vanished as swiftly as it appeared, making her wonder if it had been there at all.
“Like you said earlier.” Rena lifted one shoulder, attempting to be matter of fact about it all. “I’m going to have questions, and you’re the only one with the answers. Right?”
Silence hung between them for three beats of her heart, and for a nanosecond, Rena thought she had made a horrible mistake. Maybe her sleep-starved brain was making more out of this situation than was really there. Was her mind creating images of dragons when there were only clouds in the sky?
Or was Zander Lorens the answer to her lifelong questions?