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Alexis, a werewolf,is thrown into a place of position and power and is struggling with all of the obstacles she is faced with.
Alexis Wolfe was elevated to Alpha of the pack after her father’s grisly suicide. Not only did she take over the pack, but she also inherited a seat on the Dark Court’s council. It's the Year of the Wolf and it's her turn to rule as the Queen. Her heart is broken and she experiences the ultimate betrayal by her mate Mason. Not to mention she also needs to deal with a defiant vampire, relationship issues, a mysterious string of murders, and an unexpected pregnancy. Does she have what it takes to rule, be a mother, and mend her broken heart?
“Queen of the Damned has a nice ring to it but it sounds so primitive, so very cliché Detective Hothran. May I call you David?”
“Hell no you blood sucking bitch.” David reach for his weapon and he instantly became surrounded by vampires, ghosts, trolls, and other nonhumans.
“There is no need for name calling Detective Hothran.” He hated the way she said his name it was written on his face, he would frown every time his name passed her lips. She always made it sound dirty. The slayings were getting to the detective, his nerves were shot and his trigger finger was itchy. He really needed to dial back his attitude just a little since he was more than outnumbered, and he would be seriously damned if he was killed and turned into something other than human.
“I already told you there is nothing in this jurisdiction committing those crimes. If one of my constituents were doing so I would know about it, trust me,” she said smiling revealing her fangs. “But to ease your mind I will personally bring my council together so that a full investigation can be launched.”
“Fine, do whatever you need to do. I will be back, I can guarantee it damn it, I will be back.” The detective turned and stormed out of the throne room, which was more like an underground cavern beneath the enormous royal estate, and into the darkness.
“Thadius please follow the detective back to the surface. Make sure that no harm comes to him while he is on the compound.” Thadius, a work of art, took a step forward and bowed deeply before walking out into the darkness. He was a dangerous vampire and also the commander of the legions of guards under Samira’s rule.
“I want everyone out of here with the exception of the council members. Delaiya bring me my meal, no glass. I want it kicking and screaming.” Queen Samira’s heels made a clicking noise on the marbled floor as she stepped onto the dais and sat on the throne. Her eyes stared out with a murderous look plastered on her face as she zeroed in on me. She didn’t need to say anything I could feel the hatred in her eyes. Little did she know I didn’t want the throne any more than she wanted to give it up. Shit can get extremely complicated for whoever’s ass sits there, and unfortunately it was my turn.
By design you rule one thousand years and then you willingly step down so the next council member can rule. Samira was dragging her ass on the stepping down portion of the deal. We all sat quietly as her meal was brought in screaming to the top of her lungs. The young girl was thrown onto the dais and the relentless shrieking got louder. Samira got up from the throne and grabbed the girl, not wasting any time, she bit into her throat. It didn’t take long for the victim to be drained, and Samira let the empty body crumple to the floor. I hated being around when she decided to have a snack. She never fed and released her victims, she would drain them to the last drop and discard the body. I asked her once why didn’t she keep them alive so she could feed from them again, she simply stated that she didn’t eat leftovers.
“Delaiya come to me.” The young servant jumped at the sound of her name before she rushed over. “I asked for a thirteen to fifteen year old virgin. That thing you brought me has not been pure for at least two years,” she screamed before striking the girl. The rest of the council looked at me with tired worn expressions. What the hell were they looking at? I couldn’t do anything to stop Samira, but it was worth a shot.
“Your Majesty, are you going to call the meeting to order?”
I barely had the chance to blink before Samira vamped in front of me with blood still dripping down her chin. The growl that escaped from me was strictly involuntary, and Samira’s expression piqued with intrigue when she heard it.
“You may be next in line Alexis, but you better know your place.”
Her voice was barely above a whisper as she leaned in towards me. I fought the urge to rip her throat out, because number one she was still Queen, and number two she smelled of death and it made my stomach churn. She locked eyes with me once more before returning to the throne.
“I want you all to return to your respective colonies and bring me the head of whoever is committing these murders. If Detective Hothran returns with another case heads will roll, literally.”
“There is nothing under this jurisdiction that would commit such a crime. At least not in that manner,” said Ethan, the leader of the ghost colony.
“Ethan make yourself visible, it irritates me when I can’t see you,” said Samira. Ethan took on a more solid form before making apologies.
“It takes a great deal of concentration to remain visible your Majesty, I offer my apologies.”
Samira rolled her eyes as she continued. “The bodies were mutilated, torn to pieces, half eaten, and the eyes were missing. Somebody somewhere knows who is doing this and I want them found!”
“The bodies were also drained of blood,” I said. Samira left out that tiny detail. Vamps were always trying to distance themselves from anything that cast them as the culprits, and I wasn’t about to allow her to weasel out of the facts. Nothing else would drain blood out of something like that but a hungry ass vampire.
She cut her eyes at me again before continuing. “The final word on the subject is to go investigate within your own groups, and bring me the sloppy perpetrator. We are adjourned.”
Liam the leader of the Troll clan cleared his throat loudly. “There are other things to discuss your Majesty. It is past the time for Alexis’ installation as Queen.”
Samira let out a low chuckle. “Alexis, are you allowing a troll to speak for you? Are the wolves incapable of standing on their own four paws?”
I choked down another growl and carefully chose my words. “No, but Liam is correct. I have yet to shadow you so that I can be brought up to speed on what else is going on.”
“Fine, meeting adjourned, again. Alexis follow me.” I couldn’t help but notice the ‘I feel sorry for you looks’ on the rest of the councils faces as we exited the throne room. The compound was massive both above and below ground. Samira preferred to be underground, so there was always a cloying smell of dirt in the air. The walk down into the dark hall was a short one as we stopped in front of a huge door.
“This will be your chamber once you are installed unless you choose a room above ground. Of course feel free to redecorate.” She didn’t need to tell me that because I was going to burn everything in the place that wasn’t sacred and nailed down. The chamber looked more like a torture suite with chains, shackles, and instruments of torture everywhere.
“I loathe and despise you Alexis,” she said as she closed the door behind us, “and I get the feeling you feel the same way about me. I have had the throne for over a thousand years and I rather enjoy the power. So I’m thinking that perhaps I can keep it and we can negotiate.”
“Um, I think not. Your time is done, you can step down or be put down the choice is yours but you will leave the throne and soon,” I said, not caring about how rude my statement was or what offense she would take to it. There was no way in hell I would allow her to continue as Queen, especially when I had the power to do something about it. The next thing I knew Samira was in front of me, fangs drawn, and completely naked.
“I am offering you a deal you bitch. You don’t want the throne, I know it, you know it, and the rest of the council knows it. Let’s put these angry feelings aside and develop new, pleasurable ones. Become my consort and we can co-rule.”
I didn’t shift because I wanted her to hear exactly what I had to say. My growl was low as I moved forward to close the small gap between the two of us. She gasped and her eyes lit up, and I could tell she was enjoying this. I knew my eyes were their usual golden hue when the wolf in me was trying to emerge. I could smell her arousal and I struggled to keep the vomit down.
“I am an Alpha, not just a leader of my pack I am THE leader of all packs. I will not tuck tail and play house pet to you just because you don’t want to step down. Put your damn clothes back on, I wouldn’t be your consort if my life depended on it,” I growled.
Samira wrapped her arms around me crushing my arms and ribs. “Your life does depend on it,” she whispered. I tried and failed at shifting, her grasp was too tight. I growled, snarled, and howled but that didn’t seem to faze her either.
“Go ahead. Make all the noise you want, in the end I will get exactly what I want,” she said, her voice still low before sinking her fangs into my throat. My rage made my blood boil and I felt like I was one fire. She suddenly released me and took a step back, and I used it as my chance to shift. I launched myself at Samira aiming for her throat and the bitch vamped out of the way and positioned herself on the ceiling.
“I taste your secret Alexis,” she said with a laugh. “A couple cannot rule, and you are mated with child.” I shifted back to my human form not bothering with my clothes since they got shredded when I changed.
“Mason and I are not mated. No matter what lies you tell I will get the throne. You will come down from the ceiling eventually and when you do I am going to stake you and watch your body turn to ash.”
Samira laughed for what seemed like an eternity before she spoke again. “You are mated. I taste the pup inside you.”
I could feel the blood drain from my face and my stomach churned. Pregnant? No children, no mate, no nothing, none of those personal ties were allowed when taking the throne. They were distractions. I was inclined to agree with the rest of the council on that, and I didn’t need any distractions. At least not right now.
“Don’t worry I will keep your secret from the council until you decide to step down as next in line.” My mind screamed for me to get out of there. I didn’t hear anything else she said as I shifted, ran out of the chambers, and back to the surface.
The air was hot and sticky in Memphis this time of year and I struggled to catch my breath in the suffocating air. I debated going home, Oxford, Mississippi was an hour away by car, and I sure didn’t feel like driving. Too many people were walking the streets this time of night so I shifted and grabbed a tank top and a pair of shorts out of the trunk. My mind worked overtime to make sense of everything. It was possible that I could be pregnant; it wasn’t as if Mason and I were doing anything to prevent it. I quickly made up my mind, the bottom line was, I needed to go to the Den of Elders and let them confirm the child, and then find out a way to get rid of it. I circled the car for a few moments trying to allow my decision to bring comfort to my fried nerves. Finally I calmed down enough to drive so I decided to go ahead and head home, with any luck Mason would be asleep when I got there.
My luck had apparently run out, as I turned into the driveway and noticed the living room light was still on. My lungs burn as I exhaled, pushing all the air out. My mind and nerves were all over the place, but one thing was certain, I was not going to mention any of tonight’s “festivities” to Mason.
When I walked through the door I could immediately smell that something was off. Before I had the chance to process anything, I was greeted by Mason’s steel grey eyes as he stared me down. He was a solid hulking mass in his human form as well as in his wolf form. Hailing from Samoa, he had what I like to describe as kissed by the sun skin, tattooed arms twice the size of my thighs, and had a smile that could melt butter. He was nearly six foot four which practically dwarfed my five two frame, and I loved that about him, he was my safe place.
“You’re pregnant,” he growled. Shock was written all over my face, on the inside of course. I couldn’t let him see it, or that would be a dead giveaway.
“What the hell are you talking about Mason?” He came toward me still growling, which I didn’t like, nor appreciate, and I braced myself for attack just in case he tried something. In my heart and mind I didn’t think Mason would hurt me, however, a pissed off wolf was nothing to fuck with either way.
“I promised not to tell the council, I didn’t promise not to deliver the good news to the proud poppa to be,” said Samira with a grin, as she stepped out of the kitchen. Mason blocked the path and grabbed me as I charged at her.
“Alexis!” I could hear Mason as he called my name, but all I could see was red. My mind was locked in on only seeing Samira with a hole where her throat should be.
“Get the fuck out of here Samira so I can calm her down!” Mason shouted. I could still hear her lingering laugh as she misted out of the house. All that rage was still boiling inside my body and I didn’t think before I released the howl for attack. Within moments my howl was returned and the house was surrounded by snarling wolves ready to rumble on command. Olivia, my best friend, and Palo, Mason’s brother, both came bursting through the front door and jumped in front of me.
Palo shifted first, “What the fuck is going on here Mason?”
Mason shot a stern look in my direction and paced around the living room. Olivia shifted and came over to me with concern in her eyes. “Alexis what gives? Is everything cool? Clue us in so we know what to tell the others, before they come rushing in here too.”
Nudity was not an issue between weres, there was no need to be shy, sometimes we needed to shift and clothes were not all that important. However I definitely didn’t want any additional wolves storming my house and shifting into their naked human forms.
“Everything is fine you guys. Samira was here and that bitch has been messing with me all day. Her presence just set me off, that’s all.” Palo watched Mason continue to pace around, brother or not I knew Palo would kill Mason if he tried to attack me. He was one of my Beta’s, Olivia was too, and they would chase lint if I told them too. The number one protocol of the pack was to protect the Alpha and follow commands.
“Mason,” said Palo slowly, as he stepped closer to Mason, and was received with a growl.
“Get out of my house Palo. You too Olivia, get out right now. I need to talk to Alexis in private.”
“Sorry bro, I know you wish you were Alpha, but the orders we follow do not come from you,” said Palo with a halting tone. If looks could kill, he would be six feet under based on the way Mason was glaring at him.
“It’s okay Palo, call off the rest of the pack and you and Olivia can head home. My emotions were running high and I wasn’t thinking when I gave the call.”
The silence was deafening, they gave us one last glance before they shifted and trotted out of the house. I was relieved when Palo finally gave the howl to retreat. Tired was an understatement and I had absolutely no desire to argue with Mason.
Ignoring Mason, I brushed past him and headed towards the bathroom. It was past time for me to wash the sweat and grime from my body. I hoped the shower would relax my tense muscles and clear my mind.
Mason was getting upset, but I honestly was too tired to care. I needed time to myself before trying to work on things with him. I closed the bathroom door, despite him standing there, locked it, and turned the shower on hot full blast. I snatched off the sweat stained tank top and slipped out of my shorts and stood there looking at my reflection in fogging mirror. My dark brown, almond shaped eyes stared back at me as ran my hands over my chocolate full hips and somehow ended up holding my stomach. A stomach that was flat with the tiniest bit of definition which would all be ruined if kept the pup. I dropped my hands with a frustrated sigh, and I pulled my locs up on the top of my head into a knot out of the way. My eyes were still fixed on the mirror as Mason busted the door open.
“Samira said you were pregnant and that you were going to give up your place as next in line to the throne. What the fuck is happening? I try to talk to you and you walk away. We are supposed to be partners and I need to know what is going on.”
“I don’t care what that dead bitch said. She doesn’t know what the hell she is talking about. And news flash Mason, I am the Alpha I don’t answer to you. I am not giving up anything, I will take the throne even if it takes me dragging Samira out into the sun to get it.”
“Yes you are Alpha, you remind me of that on a regular basis, but if you are pregnant half of that responsibility is mine. And we both know you can’t take the throne if you are pregnant.”
“Mason listen, I have had a long night. Samira doesn’t want to leave the throne, so she is throwing up every road block she can in order to stop me. I will take care of her as soon as I can. Staking her is the first thing on my to-do list, but in the in-between time please let me have some time to myself. We have bigger fish to fry and I need to get my head straight before we dive into all of that. I am one thousand percent sure that I’m not pregnant.” The look in his eyes proved that he didn’t believe me as he stood there with his arms crossed and leaned against the cracked door frame. I turned away to step into the shower before the hot water ran out.
“I’ll fix the door later,” he said. I turned back to the door to respond but he was gone.