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|Fate and Fury(Grey Wolves #6) by Quinn Loftis|
After a few moments, when nothing happened, she finally opened her eyes. She could see Cypher running for her. The other elves surrounded the great beast, ensuring that it was no longer a threat. Lilly noticed that the beast still drew breath. She saw the flames flickering out, being held in midair just a few inches from her face. Protecting her from the flames was a bright shield of light. Lilly’s face broke into a huge smile as she turned her head to see Cyn aiming her hand at her. She gave Cyn a slight nod of thanks just as strong, massive arms wrapped around her, pulling her up until her feet no longer touched the ground. She pulled her arms out from the hold and wrapped them around Cypher’s neck.
He buried his face in her neck, breathing deep, feeling her pulse against his lips. Alive, he thought, she’s alive.
“Why didn’t you run?” He growled as he pulled his face back to look at her. Lilly’s breath caught as she saw the emotions swirling in his yellow eyes. “I was yelling at you to run Lilly. Why didn’t you run?”
Lilly kissed him. He didn’t need her words, he need reassurance that she was there, with him, in his arms. Cypher held onto her as if his life depended on it. He breathed her in and drank her down with everything he had. All hell was breaking loose around them, but in that moment, there was just her and just him. Lilly finally pulled back and pressed her forehead to his as she tried to regain control of her ragged breathing.
“I’m glad you’re alive too,” she grinned at him.
Cypher closed his eyes as the images of what could have happened flipped through his mind like a gruesome horror movie.
“Hey,” Lilly’s voice broke through his chaotic thoughts. “I’m here. I know I should have run and I was telling my chicken legs to get after it, but they wouldn’t move. I just stood there like I was eager to be barbequed.”
Cypher’s lips lifted slightly, as he stared into her eyes. “So you’re okay?” He asked her gently, as his brow rose in concern.
She nodded. “I’m good. How is everyone else?” She asked, looking over his shoulder.
Cypher set her back on her feet and took her hand as he headed over to where Thalion and Cyn were standing. They all looked at the great creature lying before them, its breathing shallow.
“Is there anything we can do to keep it from suffering?” Lilly asked.
Cyn stepped forward and placed a hand against its huge head. The glowing eyes focused on her and Cyn could sense the peace that the animal was searching for. It didn’t like its existence any longer, didn’t want to be what it was.
“Shh,” she told him, gently, “it’s over now. You can rest.” She sent a pulse of magic into him and with a final breath, he stilled.
Lilly felt a tingling on her face. She looked down at her blood soaked clothes, caked in bright red splatters that had fallen from the dragon. Her mouth dropped open as all traces of the beast’s life force vanished from her and her companion’s clothes, evaporating with a twinkle.
“Still haven’t heard from Vasile?” Dillon asked Skender after a long day of training with the other wolves. Aside from a few fights between young wolves, over who was more dominant, things had been progressing smoothly. There was a sense of urgency and determination that kept everyone in the group focused. The Alphas had been sure to keep the wolves busy, rigorously training them daily, to near exhaustion.
“No,” Skender’s voice was tense and Dillon could tell that the wolf was very worried.
“I would like to say that no news is good news,” Dillon said, lightly.
Skender continued to stare out of the window, into the trees beyond the mansion. Something was coming, he could feel it, and it was making his wolf restless.
Dillon moved to stand next to him and brushed his shoulder against his. To a human it would have been insignificant, but to the wolf in Skender, it was reassurance from an Alpha. That simple brush let him know that Dillon had his back. Skender let out a slow breath.
“This is not my place,” he told Dillon.
“Why? Because you aren’t an Alpha or Beta?” Dillon held his hands out wide. “You are in the exact position that you are supposed to be in and you are doing exactly what you are supposed to be doing in this moment, and you’re doing a damn good job I might add.”
Skender turned to look at the American Alpha that he had grown to respect over the past couple of days, working with, fighting with, and learning to trust in battle. “You are a good Alpha, Dillon of Colorado.”
Dillon laughed. “Go tell my wolves that.”
“They know or they would not follow you, no matter how dominant you were.”
Dillon gave Skender a slight bow of his head. “Thank you for that. Your Alpha will be proud to know how you have held things together, Skender. And, he will be back. Vasile is nearly impossible to kill.”
Skender laughed then. “He’s too stubborn to die.”
“His purpose in this life isn’t over,” said Dillon, growing serious.
Skender’s head tilted with a slight frown slipping onto his handsome face. “How do you know?”
“Because, I have to believe that someone who loves his people so fervently and would protect them against all odds can’t possibly be taken from us when we need him most.”
“My skin crawled as my wolf perked up. I knew something wasn’t right. She was too far ahead of me for me to reach her and even if I had, I couldn’t have touched her. So I had to watch what had only been an illusion created by mind, now real before me.” ~ Vasile
“We’re only a few hours walk from the mansion,” Peri told Alina as they continued to keep the brisk pace that they had maintained.
“Are you trying to make a point or do you just feel the need to point out our current position in an effort to create small talk?” Alina raised a single eyebrow at the Fae.
“Alina,” Peri said in a mock sigh, “where is the sweet, compassionate Alpha female we all know, and love?”
Alina snorted. “She got locked in a closet when it became vividly apparent that our males would need to recover from their trial before they can kick the witch’s butt. And, in order for them to do that they all need a good swift kick to the ba—,”
“Language,” Vasile growled, from several feet behind his mate.
Alina held her hand up in the air and much to everyone’s utter surprise, gave her mate the finger.