Hunted Chapter 18

So Zoey’s back at the school, eh? Fifteen chapters spent with her away from luxury, less than a single day in universe, before she’s back where the food is endless and the laundry is done by invisible servants. And while I’ve already covered how weak that makes her appear as a character it also ruins makes the book title seem rather silly.

Not that PCK has been very good about titling these books. The first one made some sense being as that was the beginning and Zoey being “marked” was the start of her life as a vampire. From there on, PCK seemed to have titled these first and then writing a story that didn’t fit the title at all. Take Betrayed, for example. No one betrayed anybody in that and no one was chosen in Chosen. So it was probably too much to expect that this book would actually have Zoey being pursued.

The first thing I realized as I began to regain consciousness was that the crisp sheets of the infirmary bed were cool against my naked skin, which meant I didn’t have any clothes on.

Look, PCK, just because you end a chapter with a character going to sleep or falling unconscious you don’t have to begin the next one with them waking up. While it probably feels right and symmetrical, the audience doesn’t need to see the protagonist wake up to know they’re awake. We can guess that, if they’re running around and talking to people, they’re probably awake. Zoey hears people telling her to breathe and she decides to pretend she’s asleep still. That way, like in so many terrible books, the character can learn things while people talk about them.

Kalona and Neferet are having a chat about how Zoey is too powerful to let die. As all villains, they have a bad habit of talking about their plan openly around people and hope no one has a working memory. They talk about how they can use her to sway the council and new order and blah blah blah. Neferet  doesn’t agree with Kalona and that Zoey won’t cooperate with them. Kalona says that they can turn her away from Nyx though.

Zoey then starts talking about how seductive his voice is and how it sounds like melted chocolate. So, like a big wet splat? And why is it that all these shitty author’s make the villains have seductive voices? Can’t they just sound like regular people? I suspect it’s because they don’t know how else to make someone sound persuasive. If only there was some way to be persuasive like making an argument or reasoning with people. But since things like that haven’t been invented, we decide all debates by choosing who’s voice is the closest to melted butter being poured in their ears.

Neferet wants Kalona to stay away from her but Kalona reminds her who’s in charge. He says that, unlike Nyx, he will take away what he’s given if he feels like it. Neferet then tries to distract Kalona by seducing him.

After way too many totally R-rated nasty sound effects, Kalona finally said, “Go to our chamber. Ready yourself for me. I will follow you there shortly.”

Sound effects that PCK couldn’t describe because she doesn’t watch porn and the elder one hasn’t had sex in twenty plus years. Zoey then considers that maybe Neferet has powers beyond being a high priestess. I’m not sure where you’re getting that from, Zoey. I don’t recall anything that might suggest she additional powers from other sources like an evil immortal. She also wonders if, just maybe, Neferet is manipulating Kalona and Kalona doesn’t know any better. She then quickly decides that can’t be because Kalona is ancient and not so easily fooled.

Once Nefert’s gone, Kalona creeps up to Zoey. She tries to hold still but then freaks out, clutching a sheet to her and screaming while crawling away. Rephaim squawks and Daruis comes bursting in and throwing a knife at Rephaim. Kalona gets pissed that Darius would hurt one of his children. He grabs Darius and Kalona is apparently so tall and long armed that he can slam Darius’s head into the ceiling.

Can I ask a stupid question, PCK? Does that mean the ravens can be killed by conventional weapons? Because if they can’t, Kalona has no right to get that pissed off. If they can, then how the hell did the Native Americans not kill a bunch of them off? Whatever the answer, Kalona is choking Darius and smiling about with a “feral” grin. Zoey then realizes he’s evil and nothing else.

At that moment Kalona’s true self was revealed to me. He was not a misunderstood hero who was waiting for love to bring out his good side. Kalona didn’t have a good side. Whether he had always been like this or not wasn’t important. What he’d become—what he was now—was evil. The spell he had worked over me shattered like a dream made of glass. I hoped desperately that it was too broken to ever be pieced back together again.

So he’s just evil with no redeeming characteristics whatsoever. I disagree, Zoey. For one he tells you to shut up. Zoey tells Kalona to stop but he won’t so she gets out her magic and hits him with fire and wind. Stark runs into the room his bow “notched with a deadly-looking arrow”(as opposed to a friendly looking arrow). He aims at Darius and then stops and looks at Zoey and seems confused.

For fucks sake, PCK, the term is nocked. I know you don’t give a damn about learning anything or doing any research that doesn’t involve stalking high school girls at the mall but really. Zoey’s panties are immediately declared a flood zone at the appearance of stark. He regains his composure and “renotches” his arrow then aims at Darius again. Kalona then says, in a roundabout way, that if Stark wants to kill who hit him, kill Zoey but he wants Darius dead.

Zoey says no, Darius was trying to protect her and she was wounded by a raven in the first place. Zoey then comments on how he looks younger, saying when he first appeared he look ageless and handsome but now he looks maybe eighteen. Zoey thinks that’s just the right age for her though now might not be the time to plan the wedding, Zoey.

Kalona asks Rephaim if Zoey’s telling the truth. Rephaim doesn’t know so Kalona looks at Zoey’s wound and traces it with his finger. Zoey fights the urge to cringe, or so she lies to us, and he says that it’s the mark of one of them and Stark shouldn’t kill Darius this time. Kalona says he must punish Darius so he takes the knife out of Rephaim and rips it along the side of Darius’s face. Zoey freaks out and goes back to her litany of “ew monster, but he’s so hot”.

I will say that at least Kalona is doing evil stuff where we can see it. That’s head and shoulders above PCK’s usual manner of having Zoey tell us that person X is totally evil, trust her. Kalona leans in and says that “the warrior” can protect her from anyone except him then he kisses her. Zoey says that Kalona is cold and it’s like being kissed by a blizzard. If I didn’t know any better, I’d almost suspect that was PCK taking a little jab at Meyer. Then he lets Zoey fall to the floor and walks out with Rephaim following him.

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