Karin Tabke's Blog

August 20, 2013


DOUBLE DARE


She found passion on a dare but is she willing to risk her heart?


Since The Dare that changed her life, Dr. Katrina Winslow has hooked up, broken up, hooked up again, and run like hell, but her drama’s just getting started. Not only does she lose her job, but unpredictable and sexy-as-hell cop Simon insists they have fantasies left to explore.


Simon’s a man who gets what he wants and he’s got Katy in his green-eyed crosshairs. Though Katy runs from him, she’s never further away than his fingertips, something he proves when he sexts her a provocative double dare.


Will the prim and proper scientist resist the sexy cop’s thrilling texts? Or will she allow Simon to strip her bare and guide her closer and closer to what she truly desires?


Simon Double Dares you to find out…


DOUBLE DARE is book two of four in The Chronicles of Katrina.

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Published on August 20, 2013 20:33 • 285 views

July 11, 2013

The Dare


THE DARE


I dare you…


Two men, one a sexy stranger, and a night of no holds barred passion.


What would you dare to do?


The Dare: The Chronicles of Katrina (Book One)

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Published on July 11, 2013 20:43 • 85 views

August 19, 2012

It’s naughty, so Jody, don’t read it!


Rafe shifted and followed the scents downstream. As he came to the edge of a narrow bluff he looked down to see Falon and Lucien lying naked on the bank, their limbs entwined, their lips locked. Falon’s essence was strong. It permeated the forest, its seductive snare luring him down the steep incline. Rafe growled at her ardor for his brother. And yet, despite his anger, his blood warmed at the erotic sight of Falon writhing sensually beneath Lucien.


He shifted and moved closer.


Gods, she was sexy as hell. He could smell the warmth of her skin. Feel its sultry smoothness against his. The soft way it glided across him. He wanted that. To cover her with his body. Take her into his arms. Feel her firm breasts scrape across his chest, and then feel the warm rush of her breath as she moaned in pleasure when she surrendered to him. Oh, yes, he wanted all of that and more. He would have it. On his terms.


Rafael stepped closer, preparing to take what was his, but then he stopped. Even from the distance he was of aware of Falon’s bright blue eyes riveted on him. She bit her bottom lip as a long raspy moan slid from her throat.


 Come with us, Rafa . . . her siren’s call enticed.


He licked his dry lips and took a step closer. Her knees rose as her long slender legs locked around Lucien’s hips. Rafe’s erection throbbed painfully against his hip. He maneuvered farther down the steep embankment so that he was downwind of them. Falon’s low moans of pleasure excited him, pulled him closer. As he approached the love-locked couple, his body tightened. The urge to tear his brother apart hovered in the shadows, taking second seat to his hunger for Falon. It drove him closer. So close that he stood just behind them.


She opened her eyes, and this time smiled a slow seductive smile that tugged at him balls deep. His cock thickened painfully. He didn’t see Lucien; he saw only erotic pleasure on Falon’s lips, in her eyes, in the deep sigh of her breath. Her chest gleamed with a thin sheen of sweat. 


Rafa, she moaned as she offered herself to Lucien.


 Falon, Lucien growled, sliding into her.


Her back arched as her breath escaped her lungs. Rafe wrapped his hand around his cock and with each thrust of Lucien’s hips into Falon, he stroked himself. He held her sultry gaze as she accepted Lucien. In perfect synchronization, Rafe stroked himself to Lucien’s tempo, never once taking his eyes off Falon’s…


 

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Published on August 19, 2012 16:17 • 492 views

May 7, 2012

 



I always do after I turn in a book.  Turning in BLOOD VOW was especially emotional because I have lived and breathed Rafael, Falon and Lucien for over two years now.  I’ve been there through their joys, their self-discovery, their pain, their sorrow and their love.  I’ve watched them suffer more in the span of three months then a city of people do in ten life times.  And when I typed The End, I sat there staring blankly at my flashing cursor, blinking back tears.  And, yes, fist pumping the air with relief.  The story that would not end was done!


But as I sit here typing this blog, Rafa, Falon and Luca are still on my mind.  There are changes I want to make to the manuscript, layering to be done and a few threads I want to rework.  It won’t be over for me until I hold the book in my hands, and then I will hand it to you so that you can laugh, cry and sigh with these amazing people who have inhabited my head and my life for so long.


I can promise you this, unlike BLOOD LAW and BLOODRIGHT there will be no cliffhanger ending.  The power of the three struggled throughout BLOOD VOW to find their place amongst each other and their packs. The story ends with resolution, and yes, I left the door open for emerging characters to have their own stories down the road.


I did that for me, so that I could revisit old friends when I found that I was missing them too much.  I did it for you too, my ever faithful friends and readers who give me a reason to do what I love to do most, write love stories.


Thank you for that, I couldn’t do it without your friendship and support.


Xo


Karin

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Published on May 07, 2012 14:28 • 338 views

April 25, 2012


Two things happened recently that prompted this blog topic.  The first was a candid dinner table conversation last week between my eldest son who is 26 and his gf who is the same age.  The conversation originated because they’re both supremely jealous.  My son has a colorful love life history, and his gf has some issues with them constantly bumping into one of his ex’s.  I get it but like I told her, you can’t change his past, move forward.  Well, apparently my son has the same problem when it comes to her past, so, in that respect they feed off each other’s insecurities.  It’s the only issue they have but a big one, so color me shocked when my son said, “I’d give Bri a pass on David Beckham.”


I choked on my food and his gf about fell off her chair.  “What?” we both shrieked.  “Are you serious?”


My son nodded and said, “Only Beckham.”  He looks pointedly at his gf and said, “And only one time.”   The reasoning behind his thinking was that because David Beckham is so hot, even guys apparently recognize this, they would forgive any woman for sleeping with him (as if sleeping is what would happen!).


Fast forward today.  As I’m checking in on fb this a.m. what do my tired eyes behold?  A lovely picture on my friend Jen Lyons wall of, you guessed it, David Beckham.  This blog topic was meant to be.  I strolled downstairs and asked recovering hubby who his one-time pass would be.


He got all indignant and said, “You’re asking me who I would give you permission to f*ck?”


“No! Who would your one time pass be?  And it has to be a celebrity. No one we know personally, and it has to be current, not Sophia Loren forty years ago (it has long been established that my husband has had and still does have a serious crush on Ms Loren.).


He grinned sheepishly and said, “I have to think about that.”  Then he narrowed his eyes at me and said, “Who would you pick?”


I grinned sheepishly and said, “I’d have to think about it too, but David Beckham does come to mind.”


As I started up the stairway back to my office, hubby yelled up, “The other Sophia!”


“Vargas?”


“Yes.”


“Both Sophia’s have big boobs!” I accused coming back down the stairs.


He came back around and looked up to me and said, “It’s more than boobs, Karin. They’re both brunettes with dark eyes, full lips, nice curves and sexy as hell.”  He cocked an eyebrow and waited for it to dawn on me.


“Oh,” I said. Then smiled.  “But I don’t have an accent.”


“You don’t need one.”  Aw, he’s so sweet.


I floated back upstairs and started writing this blog.


So you know what I’m going to ask:  Who would you pick for your one time pass?  And don’t say, “Oh, I’m so happy and content, I would never ever even think about such a thing!”


Pulleez, this is for fun, not for realz.


 

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Published on April 25, 2012 13:04 • 201 views

March 31, 2012


(scene set up: Lucien in his dumbassness to dominate our girl, forbids Falon from wearing clothes. Ever an obedient mate she obeys…)


 


"Why not hear him out?" Falon's husky voice said from behind him.


Lucien stiffened and slowly turned around. His eyes widened, then narrowed as his blood pressure shot up one hundred points. He swiped his hand across his chin. Jesus Christ! The woman had bigger balls than he did.


Lucien glanced at Sledge and his temper spiked dangerously. He could deal with Falon butting in on a subject she had no understanding of, but what he refused to accept was the reason for the biker's hungry, slack-jawed look. Fury exploded inside of Lucien, not for Sledge's reaction but because of Falon brazenly calling his bluff. If he challenged her here and now, he would look the fool. If he— Lucien's blood shot straight to his dick. Holy mother of Jesus, she was going to pay for this.


Butt-ass naked, Falon strode past Lucien to the fridge. She tossed her long hair over her shoulders and yanked open the door. He watched helplessly as the frosty air swirled around her nipples and the way they pebbled in reaction. Sledge choked back a strangled sound. The rutting sounds of Vipers spurred Lucien's pack into action. They growled low, pressing closer around the bikers.


Lucien knew his pack smelled his mark. But more potent than that was the sex scent clinging like a heady aphrodisiac to Falon. Tonight would be a wild lusty orgy the pack had not seen in over fifteen years. When— not, if, he told himself— Falon marked him, her womb would be ripe for his seed and then, his line would be born. His cock thickened at the thought. She was a magnificent specimen of woman and Lycan. Their children would be strong, lusty hybrids, capable of leading the pack into the next millennia.


The cloying scent of their lust swirled around the room. The urge to push her to the floor on all fours and take her from behind as his pack witnessed his dominance over her was overpowering. But Lucien tempered it with his promise that he would not touch her again. He also tempered it with his silent vow to respect her wishes that he not eviscerate any man who looked at her like Sledge and his dirty pack of jackals did at that moment. It took every ounce of self-control Lucien possessed not to rip out the biker's throat.


Lucien's face tightened. How had she turned this around on him? He had vowed not to touch her when touching her was all he wanted. He swore to kill any man who looked at her with lust. And yet, there Sledge stood drooling onto the floor like a starving dog over a bone, and Lucien did nothing to stop it.


He realized in the unlikely circumstances that he could seduce Falon without touching her, without her even knowing what he was about. But it would be an empty victory because fucking her was easy. Winning her trust and respect was the true challenge. In another place and another time, he would woo her relentlessly.


He sneered. And would that not be the ultimate revenge? More than possessing Falon's body, but possessing her heart? That victory would be worth all of his defeats combined.


Lucien shook his head. Falon had cast some kind of spell on him, because he was thinking crazy. What did he care about love? He cared about two things: destroying Slayers and rubbing salt into his brother's wounded heart.


His eyes narrowed to slits. She was a witch. She'd tempted and beguiled his brother to distraction, and now she was doing her damnedest to do the same to him. He opened his mouth to tell her to return to his room but when Falon grabbed a beer and twisted the top off, Lucien's vigilant gaze raked her from the top of her dark head to her face, then down the long graceful column of her neck. She stood straight and proud, her tits sitting up firm and high. The pebbled pink tips strained toward him. She put her lips to the bottle and tipped her head back and drank. In silent awe, every man in the room stood rooted to the floor and beheld the spectacular sight. His hot gaze swept the long length of her. Yeah, she was worthy of any alpha. Of a king. And she was his. In body only, but that was enough— for now.


"Fuck me," Sledge whispered, taking a step toward Falon.


Lucien flung his fist backward into the biker's chest, the force sending him crashing to the floor. His patience gone, Lucien grabbed Falon by the arms, her beer flying out of her hand as he flung her over his shoulder and stormed upstairs to his room. Angrily he tossed her onto the bed. She popped up snarling, tossing her wild mane over her shoulders ready to fight.


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Published on March 31, 2012 16:46 • 280 views

March 26, 2012

 


Oh, yeah, I did.  And I liked it.



If someone had told me ten years ago that I’d be writing lycan erotic romance and loving it, I would have looked over my shoulder and said, “Who are you talking to?”


At the time, I was a straight romantic suspense girl.  It’s what I loved to read and write (aside from medieval historicals!).  I not only was not interested in shifters or vampires (altho, hello, shifters and vamps are sexy!), at the time, paranormal was so outside the box it was a word you didn’t say, much less write.  Steamy romances were just beginning to ‘come out’ so to speak and that was good for me.


I naturally write steamy, so ripping the bedroom door off by the hinges was no big stretch for me.  However, there are some scenes in BLOODRIGHT (book two of my Blood Moon Rising trilogy) that made me blush!  And I don’t blush easily.



But the truth of the matter is, I liked writing those scenes.  A lot. Once I crossed not only my own self-imposed boundaries, but those society has erected, I felt emancipated as a writer.  And as a woman.


Here’s the facts:  writing sexy books is fun.  Reading them is fun.  Talking about them is fun.  Reading and writing sexy books hurts no one.  It’s a private affair that we enter into by choice, not because we are forced to do so but simply because we want/need/must! escape for a little while before we have to return to the reality of life.  It’s one of the things I love most about writing romance.  It carries me away into a world where I have complete control.  I know that no matter what I throw in front of and behind my protagonists, they are going to make it.  Together, because they fell in love and fought to stay in love.  Happily Ever Afters are great therapy.  When I read the end of a story with an HEA or walk out of a movie theater with a big smile on my face because all’s well that ends well, my endorphins are riding high.  I feel good.  I’m happy, and inspired.


But man, do the critics like to crucify romance.  Erotic romance especially. Everyone’s a critic! I never let it get to me because frankly, if they want to call what I write smut, mommy porn or straight out trash, that’s their opinion, and while I don’t agree with it, I accept it as their opinion.  It’s one reason I don’t get hurt over nasty reviews.  It’s one person’s opinion.  I do however get irritated when I come across a review of one of my books with inaccuracies in the review.  I guess they really didn’t pay that close attention, and if that’s the case, how can one honestly review a book?  But I digress.


With all of the hype about the 50 Shades series, nasty, belittling comments about the author, the books and the genre, abound.  Most I would hazard a guess are coming from frustrated writers who haven’t hit it big.  Or men and women who aren’t in touch with their sensuality.  Poor pitiful them.


Here’s the thing about 50 Shades: One, I wish I had written it, and believe me, if I had, I would be holding my chin up so high you all could look right up my nose into my brain.  I would obviously be laughing at all of those stone throwers as I drove my money laden semi to the bank, but I would also feel a twinge or maybe two of sadness for those who just don’t get it:  Romance novels, sexy, erotic or chaste are about falling in love.  And last time I checked, sex was part of that.  Open door, closed door, no door, whatever, it’s a readers choice to pick up a book and read it for their own reasons, and no one has the right to say how a person should feel for reading something they may find objectionable.


As far as 50 Shade goes, it isn’t a perfectly written book.  But for me and many many MANY  readers, we connected with it on a visceral level. That it is an imperfectly written book with imperfect characters, makes it, to me anyway, more real.  As a writer, I love to read imperfect books, because mine are imperfect too.  It’s validation that the craft journey is an ever evolving one.  I like to think the books I’m writing today are better than the ones I wrote five years ago, and the ones I write five years from now are better than what I’m writing now.


It’s all part of the process.  Luckily for me and so many other romance writers, we’re thick skinned and stubborn enough not to allow a little or a lot of public criticism keep us from doing what we love doing:  writing romance.


So, tell me, what is the last romance you read that had you smiling happily as you read the least page?


K*

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Published on March 26, 2012 17:23 • 89 views

 


Oh, yeah, I did.  And I liked it.



If someone had told me ten years ago that I'd be writing lycan erotic romance and loving it, I would have looked over my shoulder and said, "Who are you talking to?"


At the time, I was a straight romantic suspense girl.  It's what I loved to read and write (aside from medieval historicals!).  I not only was not interested in shifters or vampires (altho, hello, shifters and vamps are sexy!), at the time, paranormal was so outside the box it was a word you didn't say, much less write.  Steamy romances were just beginning to 'come out' so to speak and that was good for me.


I naturally write steamy, so ripping the bedroom door off by the hinges was no big stretch for me.  However, there are some scenes in BLOODRIGHT (book two of my Blood Moon Rising trilogy) that made me blush!  And I don't blush easily.



But the truth of the matter is, I liked writing those scenes.  A lot. Once I crossed not only my own self-imposed boundaries, but those society has erected, I felt emancipated as a writer.  And as a woman.


Here's the facts:  writing sexy books is fun.  Reading them is fun.  Talking about them is fun.  Reading and writing sexy books hurts no one.  It's a private affair that we enter into by choice, not because we are forced to do so but simply because we want/need/must! escape for a little while before we have to return to the reality of life.  It's one of the things I love most about writing romance.  It carries me away into a world where I have complete control.  I know that no matter what I throw in front of and behind my protagonists, they are going to make it.  Together, because they fell in love and fought to stay in love.  Happily Ever Afters are great therapy.  When I read the end of a story with an HEA or walk out of a movie theater with a big smile on my face because all's well that ends well, my endorphins are riding high.  I feel good.  I'm happy, and inspired.


But man, do the critics like to crucify romance.  Erotic romance especially. Everyone's a critic! I never let it get to me because frankly, if they want to call what I write smut, mommy porn or straight out trash, that's their opinion, and while I don't agree with it, I accept it as their opinion.  It's one reason I don't get hurt over nasty reviews.  It's one person's opinion.  I do however get irritated when I come across a review of one of my books with inaccuracies in the review.  I guess they really didn't pay that close attention, and if that's the case, how can one honestly review a book?  But I digress.


With all of the hype about the 50 Shades series, nasty, belittling comments about the author, the books and the genre, abound.  Most I would hazard a guess are coming from frustrated writers who haven't hit it big.  Or men and women who aren't in touch with their sensuality.  Poor pitiful them.


Here's the thing about 50 Shades: One, I wish I had written it, and believe me, if I had, I would be holding my chin up so high you all could look right up my nose into my brain.  I would obviously be laughing at all of those stone throwers as I drove my money laden semi to the bank, but I would also feel a twinge or maybe two of sadness for those who just don't get it:  Romance novels, sexy, erotic or chaste are about falling in love.  And last time I checked, sex was part of that.  Open door, closed door, no door, whatever, it's a readers choice to pick up a book and read it for their own reasons, and no one has the right to say how a person should feel for reading something they may find objectionable.


As far as 50 Shade goes, it isn't a perfectly written book.  But for me and many many MANY  readers, we connected with it on a visceral level. That it is an imperfectly written book with imperfect characters, makes it, to me anyway, more real.  As a writer, I love to read imperfect books, because mine are imperfect too.  It's validation that the craft journey is an ever evolving one.  I like to think the books I'm writing today are better than the ones I wrote five years ago, and the ones I write five years from now are better than what I'm writing now.


It's all part of the process.  Luckily for me and so many other romance writers, we're thick skinned and stubborn enough not to allow a little or a lot of public criticism keep us from doing what we love doing:  writing romance.


So, tell me, what is the last romance you read that had you smiling happily as you read the least page?


K*

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Published on March 26, 2012 17:23 • 324 views

February 29, 2012


"Lucien needs a kick in the ass,"  Falon said.


"That, too. But—" Talia's violet eyes implored her. "For the sake of Mondragon, it is imperative you stand united with Lucien. If you don't, the pack will lose their confidence in him as alpha, and that cannot happen under any circumstance."


"Where is your loyalty to Rafael?"


"My loyalty is to the Lycan nation first, Lucien and Rafael second."


"If I leave here, Lucien cannot force me to stay away from Rafa."


"You are wrong, because until he releases you completely, you belong to him. He will never release you if he thinks you will return to Rafa."


"Then I am still a prisoner, am I not?"


"Choose to stay and your prison will be a happier place." She opened the door and said over her shoulder. "Dinner is about to be served. Come down as soon as you're dressed."


"I need to wash Lucien off me first," Falon yelled at the closed door.


Grabbing the clothes she wanted to wear, Falon yanked open the bathroom door and strode in. She stopped half a step in. Lucien stood with his back to her under one of the two showerheads in the walk-in shower stall. No door for privacy. Not that she minded the sight. He was something to behold. The muscles in his back rippled beneath the red-and- black tattoo.


It was unusual in that it was a hybrid of a wolf and a dragon. The main body of a wolf wrapped around his torso with a howling dragonhead up his shoulder and the fire-breathing snout halfway around his neck. Lucien raised his arms above his shoulders and rubbed shampoo into his thick black hair. When wet, his hair reached just past his wide shoulders. Falon swallowed as her gaze swept down the corded muscles of his back to his tight ass. His legs were long, straight, and muscled. As her gaze rose, he turned.


She gasped. He was erect, and she swallowed again. The tail of the wolf had a dragon spear-tip tail. The wolf head wrapped around his neck but the dragon tail wrapped around his narrow waist to his belly and straight down to his— She'd never seen a tattoo on a man's private parts or a cock piercing. Heat rose in her cheeks.


Her gaze traveled up from his arrogant erection to his taut belly to his wide, defined chest. Soapy suds slid lazily down the hard, defined planes to his belly, sluicing around his erection in slow, foamy waves. His hand slid down his chest to the root of his penis. Lucien grabbed himself and slowly stroked his erection until it turned angry and red. 


Look at me, he commanded.


Falon's chest rose and fell in quick harsh puffs. She shook her head, afraid he would mesmerize her with his eyes and make her do something her heart did not want her to do.


Chicken.


Refusing to be sucked in by him, Falon set her clothing on the long slate vanity, then stripped his clothes from her body. She turned toward Lucien, who stood unmoving in the middle of the large stall, watching her. She would prove to them both that she could resist his carnal call. Chin high, she stepped into the shower. She heard his hiss of breath as she stepped past him, her thigh brushing against his. Falon steeled herself. The contact was like an electrical shock. Turning her back on him, she stood beneath the other showerhead and drenched herself. She reached past Lucien, who had not moved, and grabbed the shampoo from the slate inset. Her left breast brushed against his chest.


"Play with fire, Falon, and you will go up in flames," he warned.


She smiled, liking the control she had over him. She pushed the envelope more. Turning around, she faced him, catching and holding his hot gaze. Lifting her hands, she squeezed the shampoo onto her head. Back arched she closed her eyes, dug her fingers into her scalp, and scrubbed.


Furnace-grade heat radiated off Lucien. She felt his desire, his want, his battle not to throw her against the shower wall and take her. Then visualized him doing just that. She tried to think of Rafael, but she could not quite conjure his image. Not with his brother so close.


Lucien snarled beside her. Her eyes flew open. Eyes blazing furiously, he moved within inches of her. Falon stepped back, he stepped forward until her back hit the wall. Whatever it was between them was strong. Because despite her love for Rafael, and her powers, powers she would not hesitate to use, she felt every bit the submissive female to Lucien's dominant male.


"You cannot will me to want you," she said, pressing her palms against the slate wall behind her.


Lucien put his hands on either side of her head and leaned into her until she felt the throb of his body heat. "I don't have to."


"You swore you would not touch me—"


"I swear a lot of things." He stepped back from her, then rinsed off. He strode from the shower and grabbed a towel from the rack and said over his shoulder, "I'm hungry; hurry up so we can eat."

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Published on February 29, 2012 13:56 • 279 views

February 14, 2012

Her you go goils, the first six pages of BLOOD RIGHT!


But first another peek at the cover!


Yummalicious, Lucien!


 


Vulkasin Compound, Sierras, California


 


THE BLOOD LAW is avenged.


 


Years after alpha Rafael Vulkasin kills his brother Lucien's chosen one, the ancient council of the Lycan, the omnipotent Amorak, demands that Rafael honor the Blood Law. The Blood Law can only be avenged with an even exchange. An eye for an eye. The life of Rafael's chosen one in exchange for the life he took from Lucien.


But Rafael refuses to give his beloved Falon to his vengeful brother, who will destroy her. Rafael pleads to the Amorak to spare Falon's life.  


After a great debate, the council reaches a verdict both brothers as well as Falon agreed in advance to honor. The council could have demanded Falon's life for the one Rafael took, but because doubt is cast on both brothers' claims, the council gives Lucien the choice: accept Falon as his own chosen one and treat her with the respect and honor due an alpha's mate, or surrender Falon to his brother, alive. Revenge never tasted sweeter to Lucien. Lucien chooses to keep Falon as his own. And with his choice, the Lycan nation plummets into chaos.


 


"I WILL NOT join with him!" Falon shouted, pointing a finger at Lucien, the dark and dangerous brother the council had just given her to. The brother she despised. The brother she would never lay with!


Lucien's brilliant golden eyes sparked furiously. Hand extended, he strode toward her with the confidence of a man who knew he had won the prize fair and square. "You are mine now. Come to your master."


Rafael, Lucien's twin brother, the man Falon loved, snarled as he shifted to wolf and lunged. Lucien shifted and met him in the air, his black wolf snarling just as ferociously as Rafael's golden wolf. Their two bodies clashed and, as they had years ago, they tore at each other with one purpose: to kill. Only this time, it was Rafael who fought his brother for the life of his mate.


Still shocked at the verdict, Falon's brain sputtered, unable to react.


Never in her wildest dreams had she expected the verdict that had just been handed down. Never would she have agreed to abide by it. This could not be happening! She was supposed to stay with her beloved Rafael. Did the council not hear his truth? Lucien's mate was a Slayer! It was every Lycan's bloodright to kill any Slayer. And so Rafael had. But they believed Lucien's lies that she was not, and for his deceit, Falon was being torn from her true love's arms and forced into his brother's.


Just as stupefied, her pack, Vulkasin, and Lucien's pack, Mondragon, stood in dumbfounded silence. Unmoving, Falon stared as the twin wolves viciously tore into each other. Warm blood sprayed across her face and chest. Chunks of fur and flesh flew around her.


The cracking sound of breaking bones, punctuated by terrifying snarls. Dear God, they were going to kill each other! Falon shifted into a ferocious she- wolf. She would defend her mate to the death. She would not live without him. Falon leapt into the vicious fray. She yelped as fangs sunk into her flesh and bones, tearing her apart. Despite their blood frenzy to destroy the other, the brothers broke apart when they realized Falon had entered the fray.


Neither wanting to harm her, they backed away. Heads down, ears pinned low, with wary eyes on the other, they circled her maimed body. Shaking from the pain of the wounds, Falon shifted back into her human form.


"Rafa," she pleaded, touching his bloody muzzle as he came around to her, "don't do this. I could not bear losing you."


He snarled and shook his great golden-furred body, blood stinging her skin. She looked past him to the great black wolf that was Lucien. The brother whose own chosen one, a forbidden Slayer, died by Rafael's righteous hand almost sixteen years ago. And today, Rafael paid the price of the Blood Law for his deed. Falon's life had been spared, but in sparing it, the council gave her to the prodigal son as payment for what his brother had so viciously taken from him.


It was fair in all eyes but hers and Rafael's. She would never lay with his brother, not when she loved Rafael and not after the pain and suffering she had endured by Lucien's hand.


She would kill him first.


Falon swallowed hard and looked at the two packs that had drawn into a tight circle around them, and then behind them the other packs that had come in support of each brother. Past them on a raised dais stood the council of the Amorak, the keeper of the wolves. Their grave faces stared unblinking as the blood feud that had been building for over fifteen years played out.


Falon's heart ached with such pain she could scarce draw a breath. Her lover's blood smeared her bare chest, mingling with her own, dripping onto her feet, pooling around her toes. Rafael's great body heaved as he drew ragged breaths. Lucien was in no better shape. If she did not intervene, they would kill each other.


For Rafael's life, she accepted what she must do. Inhaling deeply, Falon held her breath for long seconds, then exhaled.


Rafa, my love, my heart, my soul. Your life is more important to me than all the lives in this world combined. Please, stop this. Let me go. We will be together again. I promise.


He will kill you, Falon, if I do not kill him first!


Rafael leapt over Falon tackling his brother. And the fight was on again. Frantic, and desperate for them to stop, naked and bloody, Falon stumbled into Rafael's office where she knew he kept a loaded handgun in his desk. She grabbed it. She would not stand by and watch her beloved be destroyed. Running back into the great room, Falon shot several rounds into the ceiling. The shots had no effect on either brother. They continued to fight. Time stopped. In slow motion, Falon watched the wolves tear each other apart, their fangs dripping red with blood, their great chests heaving as they sucked in air.


"You must stop this!" Sharia, the elder Amorak, shrilled, pushing past the council into the crowded floor.


Falon shot off another round. When the brothers continued to fight, she put the barrel of the gun to her chest and screamed, "Stop now or there will be nothing to fight over!"


Simultaneously, Rafael and Lucien shifted into their human forms and turned to face her. Falon cried out at Rafael's condition. Large gaping gashes filleted his chest, thighs, and arms. His golden skin glittered crimson.


He reached out to her, taking an unsteady step toward her. "No, Falon," he said hoarsely.


"The Blood Law has been avenged!" Sharia, cried stepping toward the alpha brothers. "You both know to kill an alpha is a death sentence!" The grizzled old woman tottered toward Lucien and grabbed his bloody hand. "Kill your brother this day and lose your life before the sun sets."


She took Rafael's hand and placed it over his brother's. "Swear before the packs you will not break our covenant."


Rafael yanked his hand from Sharia's and spit on the floor. "The Blood Law has forsaken me! Only Lucien's death will atone for it!"


Lucien stepped snarling toward Rafael. "The Blood Law has betrayed me twice! Only your chosen one's death will redeem it!"


"No," Falon whispered. "I do not want to die."


Lucien turned and faced her. "You will not die by my hand. I swore to accept the verdict and so I shall." He extended his hand, motioning her to him. "You belong to me now."


"I don't." Desperately Falon looked past Lucien to Rafael, who stepped toward her. His ocean-colored eyes cried out with pain, longing, and a love for her so profound she felt it to her marrow. But shining just as passionately, she beheld his honor, his pride, his love for his people. And most heartbreaking of all, the truth of what she must do. Go with Lucien or refuse; either way, the outcome would destroy Rafael. She could not live with that guilt.


She straightened and faced Sharia. "I reject both alphas. I choose to remain unmated."


"You gave up that choice when you exchanged marks with Rafael," Sharia said evenly. Her tobacco brown eyes glittered furiously. Her gnarled hands fisted at her sides. "See it done!"


Falon shook her head and stepped back. This was barbaric! She was not a commodity to be traded because of a law she did not live by. And she would not be a slave to any man or nation.


"Come with me now," Lucien said softly.


She looked at him through blurry eyes. Lucien: the dark, mysterious, misunderstood alpha who maybe, in a different place and a different time, she could accept. But not now. Not when that choice would destroy Rafael.


"No," she whispered and pulled the trigger.


Pain exploded in her chest. Her heart shuddered from the percussion. Falon knew her body was shaking, but she felt only the profound loss of the life she had prayed for with Rafa. Barely able to stand, she blinked back the blood and tears as every eye in the great room stared dumbfounded at her. The only eyes she met were Rafael's stunned aqua- colored ones.


"Noooo!" he cried, running toward her.


The gun slipped from her bloody fingers. The pain mushroomed throughout her body. "I love you," Falon said as she crumbled to the floor.


It was not Rafael's arms that caught her but those of his brother. Lucien's horrified golden eyes were the last thing she saw before she gave up her life for the man she loved.


 


Muwhahahahahaaaaaaa, howz that for another cliff hanger?

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Published on February 14, 2012 15:57 • 202 views