#futuristic #fantasy #vampires #aliens #erotic romance #science fiction #MF
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Leora Saguna has become what her kind fear most—a blood huntress. Fueled by a lust for revenge for the assassination of her Alpha, she has violated every Sangorrian law to track the murderers down. And one day return to her infant daughter, Katriel.
Each time Noah Chisca watches his mark take macabre delight in her task, he is one dead bandit closer to earning the highest bounty of his career. Yet he can’t deny the desire that twists his gut. He takes her captive; she takes him as her mate.
Katriel knows bonding with the mate her mother has chosen will ensure her future as heir. But the memory of the forbidden warrior monk who stole her heart haunts her, and she rebels.
Valyn’s identity is hidden until he’s proven himself worthy of Katriel. But fighting a deadly dragon is only the beginning of their nightmare, as sinister forces conspire to shake the foundations of Sangorrian society and unleash a reign of blood that may destroy them all.
He tracked her for long hours, watched as the sun arrowed downward to a point where it stretched to a carpet of gold across the horizon. The sight was breathtaking as the light settled upon the shores of the murderous Sabul Sea, turning the acidic water a fiery red. Noah wondered if the crimson shade reminded the woman of her home planet. He quickened his pace as she headed toward the razor-sharp black volcanic ledge teetering over the surge.
If she dove into those swirling waters, her flesh would burn and peel away, a thousand times worse than any damage a blazing-red midday Zadolan sun would do to her. Far worse than any punishment and execution her own kind would inflict upon her for her vengeful misdeeds. It would be a slow and agonizing death, if the sea serpents didn’t get to her first. His long-legged strides shifted into a jog as he watched her remove her sword and carefully lay it on the ground. She slowly removed her skins of battle—she unlaced the tall boots and removed them, then she unlaced and removed the brown vest. As she began to remove the last piece, his pace increased to a dead run. He couldn’t take the time to appreciate the stunning, pale beauty of her skin. He could think only of what that terrible sea would do to her, and if she jumped, there was no way he could save her. He had to get to her before that happened.
Now naked, she knelt and prayed to her gods. Noah hoped her meditation would offer him just enough time to reach her. As he climbed the vicious volcanic rock, scoring his flesh to get to her, she gracefully rose to her feet and stood at the rim, gazing down into the roiling sea. The sunset bathed her in its pale copper light, and in any other circumstances, the vision would have frozen him dead in his tracks. Like a goddess, she stood poised above the deadly waters, arms stretched above her head.
It was just as she leaped that he caught her, a strong arm banded around her, dragging her away from the edge, sending them both to the ground. He twisted, taking the brunt of the rocky surface, locking her to him, protecting her. He wasn’t ready for the suddenness of her transition. The weary woman he’d tracked morphed almost instantaneously into a snarling, vicious she-cat. Fangs snapping, claws striking out at him, they rolled over the jagged ground. Her teeth scraped across his neck. He grabbed a hank of her hair and yanked back. As fast as she was, he anticipated her every move, foiled her attempts to maim him, to kill him—to drink him dry.
Wounds littered her body and blood dripped from the rocks by the time he had her on her belly, her hands and feet tethered with bindings of tough leather. Breathing hard, he yanked her up. Her black hair spilled over her shoulders, cloaking her nakedness. He wanted to push it back, to expose her and drink in her beauty. Almost as if she heard his thoughts, she lifted her head and glared at him. Her mane flew back. She straightened her shoulders and lifted her head proudly, her lips drawn tight in a twisted semblance of a smile. “So kill me,” she said. “Or do you mean to have the savage Sangorrian first and then kill her?”
By the gods, she was magnificent. If he followed the lawless rabble of Zadolan, he would take her right now. Spread her out on this hard, unyielding rock and brutally fuck her, and then slit her throat. If he were true to his blood and to the barbarian he’d been brought up to be, that was what he would have done. It would have made his job easier. The council had not demanded she be returned alive.
But Noah Chisca had made his destiny his own. And within him dwelled an ethical imperative not grounded in Zadolan lawlessness. He’d created his own set of laws. He wasn’t after rape. He didn’t want the money the council had offered. He didn’t want her dead.
“Don’t presume to know me, Leora Saguna of Ebonnia.” He grabbed her arms and yanked her against his body. “I’ve tracked you since your first kill. I could have had you any time I wanted. Your council wants you back—dead or alive.”
“So kill me now. It seems to me I would be much less of a burden that way. You’re a bounty hunter—I would expect you’d prefer the most expedient way of collecting your reward.”
“It’s a hefty one, I’ll give you that. As I have few needs, it would set me up nicely for the rest of my life.”
She closed her eyes and tilted her head back, exposing her long, beautiful neck. “Then do it.”
He curled his hand into her hair and gazed at her lush, blood-tinged lips and the hint of lethal incisors. And then he swooped down to capture her mouth with his own, tasting her savage nature, exploring the passion of her mouth. He drank of her as greedily as she’d drunk the blood of her enemies.
He pulled her closer to him as he deepened the kiss, felt his own blood fill her mouth as her teeth razed his tongue and his lips. The fire inside him roared with a savageness he’d never experienced before.
And then she became a heavy weight in his arms. He pulled back and studied her. He loosened his tight grip and lifted her unconscious body into his arms. His strong, beautiful blood huntress had fainted.