The Penitent (The Sacrifice #2) Read Online Natasha Knight, A. Zavarelli

Categories Genre: Alpha Male, Angst, Contemporary, Dark, Mafia Tags Authors: , Series: A. Zavarelli
Series: The Sacrifice Series by Natasha Knight

Total pages in book: 80
Estimated words: 76048 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 380(@200wpm)___ 304(@250wpm)___ 253(@300wpm)

A cruel fate. Two souls condemned. An impossible love.

I knew he’d choose me before he came to our door on the night of the Tithing. I bore the mark that would make me his.

It was my ancestor who spoke the words that bound us together, and his demon-god who promised protection for the price of blood.

My blood.

I was prepared to be that sacrifice if it would keep my family safe.

Loving Azrael? The thought never crossed my mind. He was and would forever be my enemy.

He’s not the only monster coming for me, though, and somehow, it’s in Azrael’s arms I feel the safest.

But I need to be careful with him. I need to guard my heart because if I don’t, he is sure to destroy me.

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************



To see the printed photographs, to hold them in my hands and look at them, is somehow worse than I imagined. No. That’s not right. I couldn’t imagine something as sick as this.

“Who the hell is this asshole?” I ask for the hundredth time. The 8x10 of Willow swimming naked is in my fist, my eyes glued to the butchery—again, that fucking word in my life—that has obscured her face. The rage in the carving—of the carver—is glaring. The photograph has almost been mutilated, with repeated lines etched into her forehead. The glossy paper has been worn, destroyed where he stained her beautiful face with the Disciples hallmark, the cross, their signature forever defiling their victims.

I don’t know why I assumed they carved that cross into the women after death. The sheer quantity of blood in the photos of their victims is evidence that they had been sliced into the skin while they were still alive. My mind cruelly manifests the image of Willow being held down, her face, her tears, her pain as the sharp point of the blade is dragged across her forehead.

I slam my fist down on the table. “Who the fuck is he?”

Larissa glances at the closed door, then to Emmanuel. “I shouldn’t really be showing you these,” she starts, but my brother puts up a hand to let her know he’ll handle it.

“Give us a few minutes, Larissa. Let me talk to my brother,” Emmanuel says.

“I can get into serious trouble.”

“I know. And we appreciate this very much. You know that. It’ll be fine. I promise.”

Although reluctant, Larissa picks up her phone and walks out of the room. We’ve met her at the back of a restaurant usually reserved for small dinner parties rather than her office at the police station because she’s right. She shouldn’t be showing us these.

“A man’s been writing her letters. Threatening her for a while. It’s the same person or people, I’m sure.” Guilt gnaws at me, my gut tight with it… and with the knowledge that she’s locked up in my house.

“She’s safe for now. Let’s figure out who the car is registered to,” Emmanuel says.

“I want the photographs. All of them,” I say.

“Brother, this is an open investigation. They’re not going to hand those over.”

I grit my jaw. He’s right, I know. I glance at the other photos laid out before him. They’re of Raven Wildblood. She doesn’t wear the carving on her forehead. The man who did this has Willow in his sights. She is his obsession and based on the timeline of the photographs, Willow being as young as sixteen in some, he’s been stalking her for a while.

“We need to contact the Wildbloods. Make sure they know.”

Emmanuel nods tightly just as the door opens and Larissa re-enters. She hands over a folded piece of paper. “Here,” she says, and Emmanuel takes it. “It’s the registration of the vehicle, but I’m not sure that’s going to get you very far. The owner is a seventy-year-old man from Portsmouth, New England. It’s probably stolen.”

“Are there prints? DNA from the dog bite?”

“We’re testing any samples we can get but these guys are meticulous. They’ve never left so much as a hair at any of the crime scenes. And this woman is the only survivor we’ve come across.”

“Can she tell us anything?” I ask.

“She’s in shock. I hope to talk to her later today, but as far as what we know for sure, there were three of them and they kept the lower half of their faces covered. The one new detail we learned from the victim that the witness can corroborate is that they were wearing cassocks. But that’s all we have. Priests, though…”

“They’re not priests. Or if they are, they worship a warped god,” I say, thinking of Shemhazai’s statue standing proud in the churchyard, of Salomé’s blind devotion to the demon- angel.

I open my mouth to speak, but my cell phone rings. I glance at the clock. It’s almost three in the morning. I reach into my pocket to draw the phone out and see the call is coming from home. My heart drops to my stomach as I swipe to answer.

“Hello?” I practically bark because no one calls at three in the morning with good news.

“Azrael. She’s gone. Rébecca is gone!” Salomé shrieks.

My heart, back in its place in my chest, pounds against my ribs. “What do you mean, gone?” God. No. Please do not let her—

“She’s disappeared along with your wife. That witch kidnapped her!”


Emmanuel takes the phone and puts it on speaker. “What’s going on?”

“I’m telling you. They’re not here. Rébecca and the harlot are gone!”

Without another word, I stalk out of that room, the photo of Willow with the carving in her forehead still in my hand. They can keep the rest. That one is mine. I’m going to make the asshole who desecrated it eat it before I fucking kill him.