Length: Full novel (75,000 words)
Author note: Can be read as a stand-alone novel.
As Keelin moved in and out of the vehicles, she glanced around. The parking lot was full, but the warehouse was far from the main road, hidden back enough that no one would accidentally stumble on it. There weren’t any people out here, not with all the action inside. Which was good for her, she’d have privacy to strip and shift so she could fly back to the mansion.
A burning scent accosted her about two seconds before the three males from inside appeared as if from nowhere, stepping out from behind a black SUV with dark tinted windows. Her alarm bells went off, but she didn’t panic.
Inhaling deeply, she only scented the three of them. Okay so it was unlikely someone was trying to attack her from behind. Still, she wasn’t letting her guard down.
“You smell delicious, little dragon,” the one named Marshall said. Apparently the leader of the trio.
And he knew what she was. Just great. “Get the hell out of my way,” she demanded. Shifters or any supernatural beings only respected strength. She was pretty sure these three were out here to ambush her but she knew well enough to always stand her ground, no matter how afraid she was.
“Not after what you saw back there,” the other one—maybe, Martin—said.
Somehow she kept her expression blank. “Saw?”
“You’re special, aren’t you little dragon? Not everyone is powerful enough to see or contain the power.” Marshall spoke again while the third one stepped to the left, as if he was thinking about moving around one of the vehicles to cut off her escape.
She was about tired of the ‘little dragon’ comments. And she had no idea what he meant by ‘contain the power’. She pinned him with a stare, her dragon’s fire tickling the back of her throat. Tonight was definitely going to end badly. Probably with her clothes shredded and these losers burned to a crisp. She knew her animal was in her eyes already, was barely containing the urge to shift.
But she’d be weakest when she underwent the change, just for a few moments. She needed to put some distance between them before she let her dragon take over. “Special?” she asked, wanting to keep them talking as she took a couple steps backward.
They followed, one having to fall behind the others in the tighter space between the vehicles.
“Very special,” the creepy one she’d seen biting that female said in a sing-song voice. The sound of it felt like ice trailing down her spine. His eyes darkened and she scented that fire again. Demons. They had to be. “And now you have to die.”
Fire erupted in one of the male’s hands and she didn’t think, just let her instinct take over.
Not bothering to shift, she unleashed the fire that had been tickling her throat, a scorching stream releasing at the two closest males. She nailed one of them in the arm and face.
He screamed and the other male went for a weapon. A gun. He yanked it free from the back of his pants. Before he could lift his arm she whipped her fire at him, ready to fry him when a blast of bright orange flames fell from the sky, lighting up everything around them.
She jumped back, lifting an arm to shield herself from the brightness. Her fire died in her throat as the flames from above ate up the three males, incinerating them and four vehicles around them in seconds, as if the fire itself was hungry enough to devour everything in its path. She could feel the heat but just barely. As a dragon she could shield herself—to an extent—from other dragons’ fire, but whoever was breathing it was specifically guarding her against its destructive power. She sensed it bone-deep.
She stared at the sky but whoever it was had shielded themselves—until a shimmering bluish-green dragon with scales the color of the Mediterranean suddenly appeared, landing in the ashes of the demons and destroyed vehicles with a thump. He spread his wings, a beautiful pale blue that gave off the illusion of flowing water and stared at her with sapphire-green eyes.
Eyes she would know anywhere.
Before she could move or even think, the male shifted to his human form. Bran stood there, all six feet four inches of sexy, pissed off male. His expression was one of pure rage as he stepped toward her. Not that it stopped her from checking out every single naked inch of him. And the man was built. All those hard lines and striations looked as if he’d been carved from marble.
She knew she should be more worried about what the hell had just happened but as he stalked toward her, it was hard to remember her name.
“Keelin,” he growled out and it registered that he was angry—at her. “What the hell were you—”
She stomped her heel against the gravel, not caring if she looked childish. “Don’t you fucking lecture me!” She couldn’t take it from him of all people. Not now, not ever.
He let out another growl, this one filled with something else. Not anger.
He fisted her hips, tugging her to him faster than she could blink. She’d barely let out a gasp of surprise before his mouth crushed over hers, hard and demanding.