Matheus Taylor didn’t ask to be murdered. Quin didn’t care. Now, Matheus runs for his life, questions his sexual orientation & defies a mysterious new threat to vampires within his city.

What was that about?” Matheus asked once they were both in the Mercedes.

Quin switched on the radio, cycling through the stations until he found one blasting out aggressive horns and piano. Matheus dubbed it NPR emo. He drove aimlessly, taking turns on whims, wondering why these particular sounds connoted anger and not glee or confusion or hunger. Why did minor chords indicate melancholy? Music made no sense to Matheus. He understood lyrics, but how a series of harmonic resonances related to emotion, he just did not get.

After a few minutes, Quin turned off the music. He wiggled, digging the box out of his pocket.

“Here,” he said, tossing it into Matheus’ lap. “I don’t need this anymore.”

Matheus picked up the box, cracking it open with his thumb. A jade trinket rested on white satin, looking just as it had the night Matheus lifted it from the auction house vault. A flat, ovaloid disk, about two inches in length, with a circle the size of a dime near the top. Faint grooves indicated the piece had once been worn on a cord. A pictograph marked the center of the disk, the carving worn with age. Matheus closed the box with a snap and set it in the center console.

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