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“Hello and thank you for joining me for this special news cast on this 24th day of December, my name is John Kinglander.
Tonight we discuss the ever changing world of supernaturals in today’s society, and mainly the small, quiet town of Broadus, Montana; where lately a lot of activity has been centered.
This little town, just off of Route 212, is home of the Big Sky Pack. This Pack is unlike most you and I are used to. They have members of all shifter types; wolves, mountain lions, tigers, bears, and even razorback boars. They’ve come to accept all supernatural types when a special woman stepped into their lives almost five years ago.
Ask any of the locals, as I spent most of last week doing, and they will tell you that their lives changed the day Siofra O’Hana, now Siofra Johnson, stepped into their towns, and they all told me it was for the better. The consensus was that this fiery mother of six has strengthened their Pack more than any of them could fathom possible.
It started when she was kidnapped from a wedding dress shop by a former lover, thought to be dead by her and all those that knew him. She was held in an abandoned barn, beaten and almost rapped, but as I got from my interview with her, she never once worried about herself. She only wanted her Pack, her fiancée, and her son to be safe; she could’ve cared less what her ex-boyfriend, his brother and their rag-tag bunch of wolves did to her.
Her husband, Conall, and her mates, Abe and Dyson, gladly stepped in, saying that Siofra is much stronger than she gives herself credit for. I can’t disagree.
After surviving the kidnapping, Siofra was confronted with her relation to creatures of the Fae and her father, Ancient Druid and advisor to the Fae royals, Shamus. Siofra embraced her white wolf and learned that she also carried magical powers; all while being hounded by the evil Prince of Elves, Bronton. The malicious Bronton brought war to Broadus’ backyard and the Pack fought as one.
They drove the prince’s army of Trolls off, but not without great sacrifice. Siofra was driven into a coma, leaving her husband and Pack mates to worry about her for weeks on end. As we can all see, she returned and the Pack moved on, stronger than before.
We all know that life is not without its tragedies, and in my opinion Siofra and her family have suffered more than their fair share. A Christmas Eve car accident drove Siofra into a deep depression, and the Pack into a funk.
“We didn’t function like normal wolves. We were more like zombies without her laughing and smiles,” her brother-in-law, Pack Alpha Mike Johnson, said when I interviewed him.
Finally bowing to the need for help, Siofra traveled to a nearby town, seeking group therapy. There she met a friend, Nikki, and ran into her unknown mate Dyson Killian for the first time. All was not well in Broadus as everyone suspected and there were dark things on the horizon.
Siofra couldn’t know that a vengeful soul would bring an ancient demon into her life. Possessed and wanted, Siofra was kidnapped again and held hostage in the dark Pryor Mountains; the home of the Elves. Tortured and rapped, Siofra thought all was lost, but that at least her family would be safe. Learning she would bring the end of the known world, and reuniting with a loved one, though deceased, she vows to get her revenge.
Penton, former Prince of Elves and now reformed advisor to the Fae, travelled to his home land to rescue Siofra, bringing her through the portal that lies at the back of her property. They weren’t alone though, and as Siofra struggled with a heartbreaking decision, her Pack fought off Trolls and other dark magic creatures around her.
In my opinion, Siofra is one of the most self-less people I know. That night as war raged around her, she sacrificed a piece of herself to bring an end to evil. The decision hung heavy on her heart and she decided to run, to transport herself using her magic to a place she thought safe and away from danger.
Turning to a friend of the family, Madame Petit, a former Pack leader and acclaimed Witch living in New Orleans, Siofra was handed another surprise. She once again found that fate handed her another mate in the form of Were-tiger, Abe. With his help, and that of new vampire friends, Siofra began to heal and accept that she needed to go back to her family and Pack.
A powerful, magic wielding, and mind reading Werewolf such as Siofra can’t go unnoticed, and the former Master Vampire from Las Vegas took a special interest in her, chasing her from New Orleans back to Broadus, evading the scope of even the F.S.C.C.A.. He used an army of Ghouls, a force of decoys, and finally kidnapping her oldest son as tactics to draw Siofra out.
“It really wasn’t that big of a decision. He had my son, I needed to get him back, and I knew that my father and my mates were there if I needed them,” Siofra said about her following the Master Vampire to his lair in Las Vegas. The demise of the vampire was caught on amateur video and became the YouTube hit that we all know.
When asked whether or not she thought the camera phone video hurt the image of supernatural creatures, Siofra replied, “No, I don’t think it hurts our image. Human take retribution too, but you send those people to jail. We have our own laws, and humans happily let us abide by them. I only wish that I didn’t look so fat in the video. I know I was pregnant at the time, but dang. I look like a hippo.”
All lightheartedness aside, Siofra and her Pack have encountered many obstacles and overcome them all, coming out stronger and wiser in the end. Now, well now we turn our attention to the wilderness of Maine and the plight of Siofra’s half-sister, Rowena.
She burnt down a nightclub owned by a prominent vampire in New York City, but was broken out of jail by a rogue Berserker wolf. Can she find her way to Broadus to be safe?
We’ll find out next time. Thank you for tuning in, and have a wonderful night.
For Channel 12 News, I’m John Kinglander. Goodnight.”
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Now, please enjoy Chapter One of Book 5 in the Broadus Supernatural Society Series
December 24, 2016
The snow is falling in large clumps around me as I huddle up to a large pine trunk, the burning and stinging in my calf radiating up through my leg. Damn silver, I curse in my head as my breath steams around my face. I never asked for this.
All I ever wanted out of life was to be left alone. To be left alone so that the fire inside would slowly burn out without hurting anyone.
But no, it couldn’t happen that way. That dirty, sadistic, son of a bitch Master Vampire Livius had to ruin everything in the one night I spent in New York City. He was a creature of power, not used to hearing no, and when I had told him that I wasn’t interested in him he had tried to rape me. I burned his ass alive, along with most of his hoard, earning me a cell in an F.S.C.C.A. holding center.
My saving grace was a bouncer from the club Livius had owned. I had only shared a fleeting moment with him that night, but catching his scent had been the best thing to happen to me in years. Blaine D’Oro broke me out of that dank cell in NYC, and we’ve been on the run since.
We were doing fine up until about two hours ago, and the gunshot in my leg is a testament to that. The Berserker wolves chasing me aren’t far behind, but they are up wind from me and I can hear their shouts in anger because they’ve lost my scent.
“Where the fuck is she?” one growls, the sound echoing through the quiet woods.
I don’t want to be standing here when they come around, so taking a deep breath, feeling the cold hit my lungs and the pain in my leg, I slink along the tree trunk and head deeper into the trees. Trying not to brush too many branches and leave a trail, I can feel the blood running down into my boot as I limp along, succumbing to the metallic bite of the silver bullet and falling to my knees beside an old Birch.
“If you can hear me, please listen,” the whisper of a voice meets my ears and I search the darkness around me; my eyes shifting into their feline counterpart to reflect the moonlight. Seeing nothing, I just focus in on the sounds of the men coming after me.
“Rowena,” the whisper comes again, this time stronger, freezing me in my tracks. My fingers dig into the tree bark at my back and I look up to the moon, searching it for an answer as to this strange voice. I brush back the silver strands of my hair and close my white-blue eyes to focus.
“You’ll be safe here. I’m your sister; your family,” I hear it again, coming to me on the slight breeze, and I have to stifle a laugh. I have no family, at least not since my mother’s death when I was twelve years old. There has been no one for me, except the black and silver haired man in my dreams, claiming to be my father, but that’s all that they have been—just dreams.
The day my mother killed herself I was cast out of the small shifter town we had been living in; twelve years old with only a change of clothes, a bottle of water, and a bag of venison jerky to help me on my journey. They didn’t like the idea of the cursed, silver haired, freak eyed girl hanging around their pure blood children, so I was sent on my way.
So how is this voice on the breeze getting to me? How does it know my name? I think to myself as the footfalls of the two wolves tracking me catch my attention again, this time being dangerously close. I squeeze myself tighter to the trunk, the fear building within me as I frantically look for a better hiding place.
“Where the fuck did she go? We shot the bitch; she couldn’t have gotten too far.” The raspy voice fills the bone chilling air, and I know it’s now or never to hide.
Taking a deep breath, I push off from the tree and start the shift from human to my were-snow leopard form. The crack of my bones and the shifting of skin is a fairly silent process when you have it under control, but being chased by Weres, they’ll sense the magic in the air in an instant, so I find the biggest, lowest lying pine and slink underneath it, tucking my long tail up along my body and positioning myself so that I’ll see their approaching legs and feet.
I can hear them sniffing wildly, and a low growl rips through the one I’ll call ‘Rubber Boots’, due to the thigh high waders he’s wearing right now. Their quick footsteps bring them to the edge of the tree I’m hiding under, and I’m thankful for the still breeze right this instant, because if it kicks up they’ll know where I am right away and I’ll be in for a good fight.
“She’s got too big of a bounty on her head for us to lose her. That honcho down in NYC says she burnt up his kid or somethin’. We’ll be set for a lifetime when we find her, so put your damn nose down and search!” The one in the camo pants growls at Rubber Boots and they circle a tree nearby.
I can see Camo Pants’ hand on the trunk of the tree, and it quickly shifts into the Berserker state as he catches a scent; the fingers elongating and sprouting hair, the nails razor sharp and digging into the bark. I can hear both of their breaths coming heavy and quick, and then they stop, the stillness of the night taking over, and a dark feeling settles in my bones.
The hair stands up on the back of my neck and I slouch closer to the truck, my claws instinctively flexing from my paws as their legs turn in my direction. They quickly move to the branches at the edge of my hiding spot just as a breeze kicks up, bringing the stale scent of beer and a hint of something else my way, perking my senses.
Camo Pants’ hand comes down onto the bottom branch and my muscles tense, my ears pressing into my head as I’m ready to issue a warning hiss. No doubt they’ll only laugh at me—damn cocky wolves—but my bite is a hell of a lot worse than my hiss, so they should be ready.
Just as the branch starts to lift, the breeze kicks up again with a ferocious hiss, whipping the snow into my face and causing the two wolves to stumble back, swearing. Shaking the snow from my face, I hear a thud and the wolves growling. Turning my attention back to their feet, I see a third pair of legs joining them now as their voices rise, snarls and growls filling the air for only a second before the distinct sound of steel leaving leather, and a bright streak of silver flashes before my eyes.
I hiss in a breath as Camo Pants and Rubber Boots’ heads hit the snow and roll away. Their bodies fall like chopped trees, the blood spurting from their necks, and I’m slightly frozen in fear. It happened so fast. The glinting silver of a sword catches my attention, and I gulp at the blood dripping from the very sharp looking blade; the crimson tainting the pure white snow around the legs of the wielder.
There is nowhere for me to go, and as I see the long fingers wrap around the branch, I let out a hiss that vibrates through my entire body. I can feel it all the way down into my feet. His crouching slows as my warning turns into a low rumble, my throat raw and heated from the exertion.
“Now, now,” a smooth, deep voice washes over me, followed by a low chuckle, and I feel calm immediately, confusing the hell out of me.
The branch lifts up, showering me with needles, and through the dark I can see his eyes. Eyes just like mine; the white-blue color seeming to glow in the moonlight, and they lock onto mine. A slow wind brings a whiff of sun ripened apricots to my nose, and I can’t keep my eyes from closing, a low moan rumbling through me.
What the hell? I shake myself, causing more needles to rain down on my coat, and I turn my attention back to this man crouched before me.
He is lean and muscular, his Peacoat hanging open to reveal a form fitting shirt giving away his muscle tone. I’m guessing he notices me checking him out, because a smirk tugs at one corner of his mouth, the simple action setting a fire deep within me, and I shift back into human form to keep it at bay.
On my hands and knees before him, I see his eyes roam my body and his nostrils flare, taking in my scent. I’m breathing hard, the steam forming around me in rapid clouds as I try to slow the fire of desire building within me. His scent is doing something to me and my leopard is pacing within me, stoking the flames even more.
“Come on, Rowena, there is no need to fear me.” His voice is soft this time, and I can see the sincerity in his eyes. Those damn eyes, so much like mine. My stare moves to the sword in his other hand, the blood still dripping, and he drops it in the snow, reaching the hand out to me.
“How do you know my name?” I breathe out, brushing the hair from my eyes as I try to shuffle out without taking his hand. I mean, really? I just witnessed him behead two men in the blink of an eye, and he wants me to trust him? I don’t think so; not even with this inferno of lust burning within me for him.
The pain from my gunshot wound returns and I fall to my elbows, wincing and hissing through my teeth as I feel the silver bite further into my flesh. Pushing back the waves of nausea, I look back up and see that his hand is still outstretched; a concerned look on this stranger’s face.
Oh, what the hell? I think to myself as I reach out and grasp it. My breath catches in my throat as his fingers link around mine, lightning bolts flowing out and over my skin, gathering in my core, and I can feel the familiar tingle of my fire roll over my body. If I’m not careful, I’ll burn down this entire forest in a second, so I let him pull me from my hiding spot.
Trying to keep my weight on my uninjured leg, I stumble and fall into his chest. Oh God, it’s rock hard. I try not to let his body heat get to me as his arms go around me to keep me on my feet, but damn does he feel good. He even smells good.
As he holds me to him, I spare a look up into his eyes and see that he has a small smile on his lips. Perfect lips; luscious even, begging me to bite them, and I have to look to the snow and suck in a breath to reign in my raging desire.
“I know an awful lot about you,” he whispers, his eyes roaming my face as I look back up at him. I need to step back before my flames burst out and hurt him, so I jerk from his hold, wincing as my injury burns through my calf muscle. He keeps his hand wrapped around mine, and I see his attention float to my leg.
“What?” I have to pause and take a second as my head spins, and I’m cursing those wolves for shooting me again. The man’s arm wraps around my waist, tugging me into his side. “What’s your name?”
He smiles sweetly, and my heart feels like it might burst at the sight. His face is so handsome; strong jaw and nose, no facial hair, and close cut midnight black hair wet with the falling snow. He almost seems too perfect to be real. I cock my head in an almost awe like state and notice that his ears have a slight point to them, spiking my curiosity.
“My name is Penton,” he says as I reach my right hand up slowly and hesitantly brush my fingertips along his ear. His eyes flutter shut as I run my fingers over his skin and through his hair, the smell of apricots filling the air around him as his eyes fall on me again, bathing me in un-restrained lust and desire. The degree of it almost frightens me as I move my hand to his cheek and feel him lean into my touch.
As I see a naughty little grin play across his face, I feel the dizziness and weight of my blood loss and I teeter in his arms, almost falling, but he catches me by shooting his hands into my armpits. I can hear myself let out a strangled laugh, but my mind is floating, the darkness filling my vision.
“Were you the voice? The voice I heard?”
“No,” he chuckles, his smile seeming brighter than the mid-day sun, and I can’t take my eyes from it, the sway deepening in my stance and the blurriness in my vision fading in and out. So he wasn’t the voice I heard on the wind, but who was?
“Take me back to Blaine,” I manage to get out as I feel him lift me into his arms, holding me tight to his chest. “Take me to Blaine. He’ll help us.”
Then I’m out, the only feelings rolling through my body is the heat from his closeness and the inferno threatening to burst from my core. My libido wars with my mind for the split second before I’m out, this stranger pulling at every fiber of carnal need within me.
What have I gotten myself into?