The Ties that Bind (The Crane Diaries #9) Read Online Apryl Baker

Categories Genre: Fantasy/Sci-fi, Paranormal, Romance Tags Authors: Series: The Crane Diaries Series by Apryl Baker

Total pages in book: 68
Estimated words: 66965 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 335(@200wpm)___ 268(@250wpm)___ 223(@300wpm)

You are cordially invited to the wedding of:
Emma Crane And Daniel Richards
August 6, 2022 at 7pm
Our Lady Of Hope Presbyterian Church
New Orleans, LA
Reception to follow at The Crane Plantation
Please beware the ghosts in the church as they are hostile and could potentially do you bodily harm.
Otherwise, join the parents of Emma and Daniel to rejoice in the celebration of their marriage.


“Can’t you just sneak in and poof me out of here with your white lighter abilities?” I outright cringe when I hear my grandmother say the words “princess dress” to the attendant.

“What the heck is a white lighter?” Eli asks, his voice over the phone confused.

“Don’t you watch Charmed?”

“No, Hilda, I don’t.”

“A white lighter is like a Guardian Angel, only they can poof wherever they want to go and heal their charges.”

“One, I can’t heal jack, and two, I can’t poof. I can get in a car, a bike, a plane, or a train just like the rest of the world, but I can’t magically poof anywhere.”

“Well, that sucks.”

“It does, yes.”

I sigh and walk farther away from my family. “I think I actually stayed dead and I’m in my own version of Hell—shopping.”

Eli laughs. The sound is so good to hear I almost cry. Finding out he was alive and well lifted a heavy burden off my shoulders. I will always maintain that he died because of me, but some of the guilt for that has lessened. I’m not torturing myself anymore.

I only wish I could tell his family the truth. The deal he made with the Powers That Be specifically says no one can know he’s alive or there will be consequences. They need him to take care of Ella—a new living reaper. So, I’m betting they’d do something to his family. Neither of us wants that. I’m still trying to find a workaround because they deserve to know he isn’t dead, and he deserves to have them back as well. I may never find a way around it, though, and I may have to accept that, but I’ll try everything in my power first.

“Why don’t you ask Mary to plan it all and just show up on the day of?”

“Because she’s mad at me.”

“Ah.” There is a world of knowledge in that one word. He grew up with brothers and a sister. Me? I’m still learning how to have that.

“What do you suggest I do to fix it?”

“Honestly, give it time. You ran away from them. You made them worry every day, and you hurt them. All you can do is keep saying you’re sorry and hope they come around to your apologies sooner rather than later.”

“I don’t have the patience for that.”

He snorts. “I know, but it’s still the best advice I can give.”

“I guess I can’t complain about my penance. As you said, I hurt them by running. If it makes Lila happy, then I’ll let her drag me to as many wedding shop thingies as she wants, and I’ll keep a fake smile plastered on my face.”

“Better you than me.” He pauses and says something to someone in the background. “I gotta go. Practice is starting, and Coach’ll ream me out if I’m late. Scouts are here today, and they’ll be at Friday’s game. I’m told I have to impress them if I want a shot at getting a football scholarship.”

How did I never know he liked football so much or was good at it? He’s a quarterback, for cripe’s sake. I mean, Benny is a football nut, so it shouldn’t surprise me all that much, but it does. He never gave off the whole athletic vibe. He was Eli, the Hunter. My surprise doesn’t mean I’m not proud of him, because I am. He’s a quarterback! Even I know how important that is.

“Well, break a leg.”

“Uh, Hilda, you don’t tell an athlete to break a leg. That’s for theater people. If we did that, we’d be out for possibly most of the season.”

“Oh.” Makes sense.

“Say good luck instead.”

“Good luck, then, and call me tonight to tell me about how you impressed them all.”

“Will do.” He hangs up, and I shove my phone in my purse. Yes, I am carrying a purse simply because it is the only way to keep up with all this wedding nonsense. The planner I have is almost as big as the danged purse. Lila is going overboard.

As much as it frustrates me, I’ll keep my lips shut. I had my day. Dan and I got married with only the two of us there. That was for us. This wedding is for the families. I’ll give them that as another way to say I’m sorry for everything I put them through.

I’ve barely been back a month. I even went and saved Eli and his little reaper from some truly nasty beings we couldn’t even kill. All for the greater good. I’m still not happy about that, but sometimes you have to let bad things happen to keep the innocents of the world safe. It’s a blow to my sense of right and wrong, but it’s a simple truth I understand better than most.