“Are we there yet?” Ciro whined, bouncing in his seat in the back of the Escalade they were riding in.
Raven chuckled as he looked back over his shoulder from the front passenger seat. “Not yet, little love, but soon. Going by the directions, we should be there within the next fifteen to twenty minutes.”
“Oh, thank the gods.”
Joel turned to look at his mate from the middle row of seats where he sat next to his other mate Jareth and smiled at Ciro. “What’s the matter, sweetness, can’t wait to start our vacation?”
“No, he can’t wait to get there so he can rip off all his clothes and spend the next three days walking around in his birthday suit,” Ash, their other mate said from beside Ciro and he wrapped his arm around Ciro’s shoulders and leaned in, kissing their panther mate on the head.
“There is that, but I think he’s more anxious to get there so he can jump our bones,” Lorcan, their dragon shifter mate teased from his place in the driver's seat.
Ciro gave them each a hungry look as he smirked then licked his lips. “Well, those are the best reasons, but no. I have to pee. Those two hot chocolates I had are kicking in.”
Everyone chuckled, and all shook their heads. “I told you you shouldn’t have drank so much on a long drive,” Jareth admonished as he turned his head to look out the side window.
“Yeah, yeah, but you know how much I love hot chocolate, and being out in this cold weather just makes me want it more.”
Raven sat forward and looked up out of the windshield. “Those clouds don’t look good. I think snow may be coming this way. Good thing we’ll be there soon.”
“But the weather man didn't call for snow this weekend. I’m packed for the cold, but not the snow. What will we do if it snows? How will you make your meeting with the local coven leader, Raven?” Jareth asked.
“We’ll be fine in the chateau, baby love, and hopefully if it does snow it won’t be too bad. It’s a little early in the season for anything more than a dusting right now,” Raven answered.
“So, this is a real castle we’re going to?” Joel asked. He had never been in Switzerland before. Hell, he had never been to most places before meeting his five mates. Raven’s palace back home in Italy where they lived still made him feel small and like he shouldn’t be there, but this place they were heading to was supposed to be some ancient castle. Joel felt a little like a fraud going to places like this, being just an ordinary writer from the states. But Raven, their vampire mate, was the king of all paranormals and refused to travel without all of them with him, so here they were, headed toward some castle in the Swiss Alps, so Raven could meet with the local vampire coven leader there.
“Well, I don’t know about the forecasters, but I think they’re wrong,” Lorcan grumbled.
“Why is that, Lorcy?” Jareth asked.
“Because it’s starting to snow.”
“I hope it’s not too bad, or holds off until we get there,” Ash replied. “These roads aren’t the safest in good weather.
“What’s this place called again?” Lorcan asked.
“Mon Petit Paradis, translated it means, My Little Paradise,” Raven replied.
“I thought we were going to some castle?” Joel asked.
“We are. Mon Petit is a private residence in Montreux, owned by an old friend of mine. Although he won’t be there right now, he leaves it fully staffed year-round for when he and his family decide to vacation, or a friend asks,” Raven answered with a smile.
“What about that other castle, The Chillon place?” Ciro asked.
“Chillon Castle, right on Lake Geneva, is a magnificent place to visit and not far from where we are going. After my meetings I was planning on us all taking a private tour. I’ve already spoken with the caretaker.”
Just then the read of the car slid and Ciro and Jareth cried out. Lorcan quickly got the SUV back under control and slowed down a little. “It’s okay. Just hit a slippery patch. This snow is really starting to come down now. Are you sure we’re almost there, Raven?”
“It’s been awhile since I have been there, but yes, it shouldn't be much further. Just take it as slow as you need, love.”
“Are you okay, Ciro? Can you hold it a little longer?” Joel asked in concern as he turned to look back at Ciro again.
“Yes, I think I can hold it a little longer, as long as we don’t scare the pee out of me like that last slide almost did.”
“Sorry, little love. I’ll take it as carefully as I can,” Lorcan said and glanced quickly at Ciro in the rearview mirror.
Joel felt Jareth shake from beside him and turned to look at his omega mate. He grabbed Jareth’s hand, finding it cold. “Baby, are you okay? You’re freezing.”
“I’m okay. I just got a little scared for a moment, but I’m good.”
“But you’re freezing. Lorcan, love, can you turn up the heat a little please?” Joel asked.
“Come here, baby love,” Joel said to Jareth and wrapped an arm around his shoulders, pulling him close, to try to keep him warm. “Better?”
“Mmmm, much,” Jareth hummed as he cuddled against Joel.
As they traveled on, the snow came down heavier, and Lorcan drove slower. The darkness around them seemed to close in on them, and the only thing that could be seen out the front window was the snow as it pelted against the outside of the window and all the white that reflected against the headlights.
Raven sat forward in his seat, his gaze darting around, trying to find some trace of anything, but the snow was too heavy. “Maybe we should turn around? This snow is only getting stronger and I can’t see a thing even with my vampire sight.”
“I’m not sure that’s such a good idea,” Lorcan replied. “I’m going as slow as I can, so we don’t skid out, but the snow is starting to pile up around us. If I try to turn back, I may get us stuck.”
“Pull over,” Ciro suggested.
“I can’t pull over, little love. If I do we’ll surely be stuck,” Lorcan grumbled.
“At this rate we’re not going to get anywhere but killed if we keep going. Pull over so I can shift. I’ll run out and take care of my business, then scout ahead. My panther will be fine in the cold and maybe I can find where we’re supposed to be and come back. As Raven said a half hour ago we should have been close. Maybe with all this white stuff we passed it.”
“Ciro, you cannot go out in this. It’s practically a blizzard, and the temperature has dropped to near freezing out there,” Ash argued.
“I’ll be okay, I promise. If I can’t find anything in fifteen minutes, I’ll come back, but if I don’t go out there now, we’re going to have one hell of a mess back here and I for one do not want to sit in this car for gods only know how long with that smell,” Ciro replied and started pulling off his clothes.
Lorcan slowed to a crawl as Ciro got ready. Once he was nude and moved to the side door, Lorcan stopped and Ciro pushed the door open, struggling against the wind.
“I’m not so sure this is a good idea, little love,” Raven said as he reached back and touched Ciro’s arm. “I don’t want you getting hurt.”
“The only way I am getting hurt right now, Raven is by remaining in my human form freezing my man bits off in this open doorway. I promise I’ll be fine.” Ciro gave Raven a loving smile, then quickly shifted. His panther jumped from the car and took off into the night.
“For the record, I don’t like this idea,” Joel said as he closed the door behind Ciro.
“I agree, baby. I think this is the stupidest idea yet. But, unfortunately, Ciro is right. At this rate all we’re going to do is get stuck in the snow. The storm is getting worse and from my calculations, we should be out of gas soon. Once that happens, we’ll all be freezing to death in this tin can,” Ash replied.
A gust of wind whipped against the car, rocking it from side to side. “Shit. It has to be blizzard conditions out there by now. It’s a total white out, how is he going to find his way anywhere?” Joel argued.
“If he’s not back in fifteen minutes, I’ll shift and go after him. My wolf will be warm enough and my sense of smell is better than Ciro’s, even with all this snow,” Jareth said.
Joel tightened his hold on Jareth as he objected, “No, then we’ll have two of you out there to worry about. We should stay put where he can find us when he returns. In the meantime, maybe we should shut off the engine to conserve our fuel for the rest of the trip. We can all huddle together to stay warm if we need to until he comes back.”
“I agree with Joel...for now, but if Ciro isn’t back in half an hour, I’ll go out after him. The cold doesn’t affect me like it does the rest of you,” Raven replied.
“You would freeze faster than Jareth, Raven. I’ll go. My dragon can cover more ground in half the time,” Lorcan offered.
“Yes, but like me, your wings will freeze too fast and with this wind, you won’t be able to fly at all,” Ash argued.
“See, I am the best one to go. With my fur when I shift I’ll be fine,” Jareth said.
“I don’t like Ciro being out there as it is. Having both of you out there will be too much on my nerves. Why don’t we jump out and call him back? I’m sure he’s still close,” Joel replied, his voice giving away his concern.
“I’m sure he’s out of range by now. Let’s just give him some time and if he doesn’t come back soon, then we’ll all go out. We’ll stay in groups and see what we can find. How does that sound?” Ash replied.
“How about we argue about it later? For now, we do as Joel said and conserve our fuel and keep an eye out for Ciro,” Lorcan commented as he turned off the engine and headlights.
“We need to try to stay warm. Ash, jump up here with Jareth and I. Raven and Lorcan, I say you two get comfortable up there somehow.”
Ash moved around to join Joel and Jareth on their bench seat in the second row. They placed Jareth, who was smaller, between them and the three huddled close. Lorcan pushed his seat back as far as he could, then gave Raven a smirk. Raven chuckled and rolled his eyes, but unclipped his seatbelt and climbed over the console between them and climbed onto Lorcan’s lap. Once settled, Lorcan wrapped his arms around Raven and held him close. “I love this idea, Joel,” Lorcan said and began to nibble Raven’s throat, causing him to moan.
Joel laughed. “Of course, you do, now you have an excuse to ravage our Raven, but if two start fucking up there and fill this space with the smell of sex, we’re all in trouble. There’s not enough room in here for one of our orgies.”
“And it wouldn’t be fair of us to enjoy each other’s bodies while Ciro is out there freezing. We should wait until we have no other choice,” Jareth added, his words throwing cold water on all of them. Jareth was right, they needed to keep watch for Ciro or any dangers that may arise.
“Damn, I hope he’s okay and comes back soon. I really hate this,” Ash grumbled.
* * * *
Ciro jumped from the car and heard the door close behind him. Without wasting any time, he ran as fast as he could through the deepening snow. Once he relieved himself, he felt much better and could focus on where they were and where they needed to go.
As he trudged up a hillside, his whole body disappeared in the snow, with just his head sticking out. The wind had to be gusting at near ninety to a hundred miles per hour, causing deep drifts. Once he made it to the top of the hill Ciro could see a faint light shimmering through the snow as it fell faster, and the flakes became thicker.
He raised his head and sniffed, trying to get a location on any structures in the area and also keep the scent of his mates, so that he could get back to them, but it wasn’t easy in the storm. He turned his head to look back toward where they should be but couldn’t see the car any longer. Ciro knew it would be too dangerous for him to go much farther from them, but he also knew that if he didn’t find somewhere soon, then the men he loved could freeze to death on the roadside. He needed to keep going.
Strengthening his resolve, he raised his panther head high and took off down the other side of the hill toward the small point of light. Snow got in his nose, causing him to sneeze a few times. His tail was starting to get really cold and Ciro was afraid that it was going to get frostbite if he stayed out much longer.
Another ten minutes passed, and the small light grew larger. His body was exhausted from fighting against the wind, as well as struggling to get through the heavy snow, and he was now shivering uncontrollably, but Ciro knew he was close to getting them help.
Out of nowhere the large grey building appeared through the white clouds of snow swirling before him. Ciro stopped and looked up, noticing one light in a high window of the castle. Walking as close to the wall as possible to help block some of the wind he made his way around two sides before coming to a large wooden door. Ciro scratched against the surface, but the wind was blowing with such ferocity at this point he couldn’t even hear the sound himself, he doubted anyone inside would hear it.
Looking around for some kind of door knocker, or bell, he found a sign half covered by the snow. Ciro rose up on his hind legs and scratched at the sign, clearing the snow away. ‘Mon Petit Paradis’ it read. Ciro’s heart was elated. He had found it. Now he just needed to get someone inside to help him get back to his men, so they could all get back here and be safe.
There was only one thing he could do at this point and he really didn’t want to do it. He knew his ass would freeze, but was seriously afraid his little appendages like fingers, toes, as well as his cock and balls would freeze off in seconds, but he had no other choice, he needed to shift.
Ciro shifted back to his human form and cried out as the frigid air wrapped around him. The wind whipping against him, lashing his skin, felt like the fires of hell, and the millions of snowflakes that pelted him, felt as if he were being hit by little needles. He knew he had to move fast. Ciro began banging on the door as he screamed for help. A few ice cycles dropped from above and shattered at his feet causing Ciro to step over some. He continued to pound on the door for another minute, but nobody came. Another minute passed and his body began to shake uncontrollably, as his teeth chattered to the point he thought they would all break. All his strength was gone and Ciro just wanted to sleep. His body demanded it.
He leaned against the door, placing his forehead against the cold wood and began to cry. He was going to die right here, and his men would follow him into the afterlife soon, their bodies would be discovered in the morning all frozen to death in the car. Tears rolled down his cheeks freely and froze on contact, making him colder, but at this point he didn’t care. He had failed them all and now they were all going to die.
Ciro dropped down to his knees, then onto his ass, the snow not even registering to him now as he was too cold to feel it. He lay against the door as he felt the last of his strength leave him. Ciro’s eyes closed and the blackness gripped him, pulling him down into nothingness. The last thing he remembered before he blacked out was the handsome faces of his five wonderful mates and his heart filled with the love he had for them.
To be continued in Part II
The Angel Pack book 1
Jesse Alexander was kicked out of his home when he told his family he was gay. When his best friend Taylor is also thrown out, the two friends take off and land in New York City, where they find jobs at an all male club. Jesse’s voice lands him a singing job at the club. When the owner discovers their secret, he offers to help them, but that kind gesture turns into the biggest mistake of their lives.
Micah Angel left his birth pack over three hundred years ago when they tried to force him to marry an Alpha female of their choosing. Micah refuses, and leaves the pack, he will settle for nothing but his true mate.
When Micah hears the angelic voice coming from the most beautiful man he has ever seen, his world turns upside down. Then he realizes that the angel is his mate. He has waited a long time to find him, but now that he’s found him, he may never get to claim him. Someone is trying to kill Jesse. At the same time, someone from Micah’s past comes back to claim Micah as their own. Is it coincidence or a set up? Even though Jesse has trust issues and Micah can’t claim him, he will do anything in his power to protect his mate.
When the person trying to kill Jesse accidentally gets Micah instead, Jesse needs to find a way to save the Alpha before it’s too late. Can Jesse and the pack find the culprit and the cure before Micah dies, or will Jesse lose the one man that he feels he can give his heart to. And if Micah survives, will he be able to move past the betrayal of one of his own and finally claim his mate?
“Protect me?” Jesse said with disdain in his voice and a cold look in his eyes. “Protect me?” he repeated. “That’s why you sat there and allowed your friend there to talk to me like that?”
“Thomas didn’t mean anything. He was just asking if there may be someone who is angry with you.”
“Yeah. Riiiight,” Taylor said with his hands fisted on his hips, glaring at Thomas. “He pretty much just called us whores and you’re sticking up for him? Nice, Micah, real nice,” Taylor finished coldly.
“We’re just trying to get to the bottom of this. To look at all the angles,” Micah said in frustration.
“Yeah well maybe Thomas did it! Maybe he has some sick reason. Maybe he’s just a total fucktard!” Jesse sneered at Thomas. A flash of something Jesse couldn’t make out crossed Thomas’s eyes, but he covered it up quickly and narrowed his eyes at Jesse.
“What reason would I have to do something like that to our own club?” Thomas asked calmly.
“How the hell should I know, we don’t know you. Just like you don’t know us. Maybe you’re just a psycho asshole.” Taylor smiled at that last part.
“Enough!” Micah yelled. “We’re not getting anywhere throwing names at each other. Let’s just sit down and calmly talk about this.”
Jesse grabbed Taylor’s hand and turned to leave. “Let’s go, Tay. We have better things to do than sit here with these assholes. There are at least twenty to thirty hot guys still down there that we haven’t fucked yet. If we start now we can get to all of them by sunrise.” Jesse and Taylor headed across the V.I.P. lounge toward the stairs.
Micah ran after them and grabbed Jesse’s arm and turned him around. He grabbed onto both of Jesse’s arms and held him tight. “You’re mine, Jesse! I better never find another man touching you! You belong to me!” Micah pulled Jesse into him and smashed their lips together hard. Jesse tried to pull away. He fought to get out of Micah’s hold, but he couldn’t. He kept his lips tightly closed. The passion and anger in Micah’s eyes and lips were playing with Jesse’s resolve.
Micah’s tongue came out and swiped across the seam of Jesse’s lips, demanding entry. Jesse lost the battle as his head started to swim. He opened his lips slightly, and it was just enough for Micah to take advantage and he slipped his tongue into Jesse’s mouth.
Their tongues battled for dominance. A growl escaped Micah as his arms wrapped around Jesse. The growl sent a thrill through Jesse and he melted against Micah, submitting to him, as he held onto Micah’s shirt. Micah’s wolf was overjoyed at Jesse’s submission. He wanted to claim their mate right now. Micah kept one arm wrapped around Jesse’s waist and moved the other to grab the back of his head, holding him tight. His heart and head were soaring with the knowledge that his mate was finally in his arms. Jesse tasted better than anything on this planet. He tasted of chocolate, cinnamon, and a hint of lavender. Jesse’s lips were so soft and his body fit Micah’s perfectly. A small moan escaped Jesse and Micah smiled against Jesse’s lips with a small chuckle.
That was enough to bring Jesse to his senses. His eyes popped open and he flattened both palms against Micah’s chest. Jesse pushed with all his strength as he pulled his head back. Breathing hard, Micah and Jesse just stared at each other. Micah’s hands were still on Jesse’s hips when he started to speak. “Jesse…” He was cut off when Jesse smacked him across the face as hard as he could. Then Jesse cursed from the pain as he pulled his hand into his chest, holding it with his other hand. Holy shit! What is this guy made of...concrete? Jesse thought to himself. Micah stepped back from Jesse, his face emotionless. He just stared blankly at Jesse.
“How dare you! Don’t you ever fucking touch me again! I don’t care who you say I am to you. I belong to no one! You can all go fuck yourselves!” Jesse yelled. He turned and ran down the stairs. Taylor stopped at the top of the stairs and turned toward Micah. He looked right into Micah’s eyes and sighed as his face softened. “Idiot.” He rolled his eyes. “You just blew it. I told you to go slow, to take it easy with him. You say you’re his mate, yet you didn’t even stand up for him just now with that asswipe, piece of slug trail.” Taylor pointed to Thomas, who was standing with Raith by the office door, watching everything. “I told you to never hurt him, and it’s the first thing you do. Don’t ask me to help you now. You don’t deserve him, and you don’t realise how big you just fucked up. Huge.” Taylor turned around and started heading down the stairs. “Maybe we’ll see you around sometime, bitches. Have a nice life.” Taylor disappeared down the stairs.
Micah was just standing there, frozen, mouth hanging open, tears started to burn the backs of his eyes. He couldn’t breathe, he couldn’t think, as Taylor’s words all sank in. “I just lost my mate. Before I even had a chance to have him, I lost him. What the hell just happened? What the fuck have I done?”
Micah started to hyperventilate as he started to get angry. The pain in his chest was crushing him. His stomach twisted and his wolf was howling, raging mad at him for letting their mate get away. He was fighting to get to the surface to go after their mate and claim him. Micah was fighting to control his wolf, but he couldn’t. His teeth ripped through his gums, and his eyes went feral. He couldn’t control it. His wolf was taking over.
Maggie has been married for twenty years and has four children. She is a Long Island girl who now lives in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania. Maggie has always loved anything that has to do with the arts. Music is one of her biggest passions. She was a photographer and artist in her earlier days and spends hours sketching anything that catches her eye. Maggie loves to write about big, strong, tough men who have a softer side. Most of the time you can find Maggie running around with her kids, sketching, or sitting with her laptop creating new characters, as music always plays in the background.
To find out more about Maggie, what she’s working on, and what’s coming next, please visit her Website at: www.maggiewalshauthor.weebly.com
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Siren author page: http://www.bookstrand.com/maggie-walsh
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