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|Out Of The Dark(Grey Wolves #4) by Quinn Loftis|
"There is always some truth in fables," Sorin told him.
Costin and Fane were now listening intently.
"Why do you want to know about witches and dark magic?" Fane asked Decebel.
"There was something behind that fire. I could feel it, like oil running over my skin. It was greasy and thick."
Fane nodded. "I agree that something was in the air. Something evil."
"There hasn't been a documented witch in centuries." Sorin was shaking his head. "And even when there were witches, it was – is – forbidden for packs to employ them or seek out their help."
"Well, it's pretty obvious that Thad isn't really into obeying pack law. He did attempt to kill our Alpha and my mate, after all," Decebel ground out.
The wolves waiting for the vehicles to return huddled with their pack mates, seeking comfort from one another. Decebel felt the chill again. Something was wrong.
Something was coming.
"I want Vasile's spawn crushed into nothing." Thad paced in the woods a mile behind the burning mansion. "Just a pup and he's found his mate. I've been waiting centuries!"
Thad turned to look at the woman who was holding her hands toward the fire, muttering under her breath. Desdemona – or Mona, for short – was an extremely powerful witch. A witch that his pack had employed for several centuries. She was the epitome of evil. Even her name—Desdemona—meant “of the devil,” testified to the darkness of her soul. Thad watched and waited as she continued to bring the mansion to the ground.
Suddenly she dropped her arms and turned to face him, piercing him with her eyes, one blue, one black – both filled with malice. She had long hair, black as night with one strip of white near her face. Aside from the freaky eyes, she was a beautiful woman – a beautiful woman who would cut your heart out and feed it to the wolves if you crossed her.
"I've told you before, Thad, I cannot kill from a distance without the lifeblood of the one you want dead." She sounded exasperated, as if talking to an annoying child.
"What can you do to him? Surely a witch four centuries old can do something," Thad taunted.
"Watch yourself, wolf," Mona hissed. "I work for you, but I will not be disrespected."
"My apologies." Thad bowed his head and knew his words and posture had placated her.
"So you're pissed because he has a mate at such a young age?" she asked.
"Pissed is putting it mildly. If you can't kill him, take her away from him."
Mona walked a slow circle around Thad, arms folded across her chest as she flipped through the curses in her mind. Thad watched as a grin – so wicked it could cause demons from hell to cower – spread across her evil, albeit beautiful, face.
"I have just the curse to take care of our little wolf pup." Mona rubbed her hands together as her eyes began to glow," Nutrea uitat, cherished forgotten, a curse that will remove his treasured memories and return him to the worst day he's ever lived through."
"What if the worst day he's ever lived through was while he was with the half-breed?" Thad questioned.
"She is his most treasured memory. She will be wiped from his mind because she trumps everything. So with her gone, his mind will return to a time before he met his mate that was horrific for him," Mona explained, but the tone of her voice made it clear that she didn't like having to do so.
"Now, I need you to keep silent." She glared at Thad until he raised his arms in surrender and stepped back, leaning up against a tree.
Mona turned toward the mansion again and began to seek out the life forces of those near. She could feel a strong pull just beyond the mansion. The packs, she decided. They had run the opposite direction and were waiting. She smiled to herself. Witches had been wiped from the minds of the Canis lupis long ago. The wolves feared the magic and tried to ignore it, thinking it would just go away.
We are not so easily forgotten, she thought. I will remind you wolves who wields the power and to whom you should bow.
As she focused on the power of the wolves she began to chant.
"Earth, water, wind and fire,
Heed my words, fulfill my desire.
Find the one whose name is Fane,
Seek him out, make your claim.
Bind his memories, treasured few,
Take him back to feel the pain anew.
In his mind, mysteries uncovered,
Rip out the mate he has discovered.
Earth, water, wind and fire,
Hear me now, do as I desire."
Mona continued to focus, waiting for her spell to hit its target.
"Did it work?" Thad asked impatiently.
"Shh!" Mona growled. "I will feel it when it hits him."
Seconds ticked by. The wind began to pick up and Mona's hair started to whip around her face. Her eyes glowed and darkness seemed to wrap her in a cloak, caressing her, embracing her as a lover. She closed her eyes once more as a crash of thunder echoed across the sky. Then she let out a skin-crawling growl.
"It didn't work? What happened? Speak, witch!" Thad snarled.
"His Beta protected him." Mona spoke through gritted teeth. "Somehow he heard the spell in the wind. He shouldn't have been able to."
"What are you going to do now? Can you send another spell to Fane?"
"Damn wolves." Mona turned on Thad. "There are laws that bind our magic. We can't just do whatever we want, wolf. The curse hit the Beta instead. You said he was mated?"
"Yes, but I tried to have his mate killed. I don't know if she is indeed dead but I don't think so. From the way he spoke in those last few moments in the mansion, she was still alive but injured."
"So you want the Beta's mate dead as well? Damn wolf. Do you want all of their mates killed?"
Thad growled at her.
Mona shook her head. "Just hold on."
She began to think aloud, working through the possibilities. "Now the Beta no longer remembers his mate. Right about now, he should be awakening. He will remember the worst day of his life and will think that today is that day. I can't curse Fane now. Even I don’t have the power to maintain two curses such as this. Damn the laws fate has bound me with. I could curse the Beta again to make sure his mate is never found..." She tapped her lip with her long fingernail. "Hmm. That has possibilities. If the Beta couldn't find his mate, then the Alpha would assign his most trusted to the hunt. That would leave them exposed, vulnerable." Mona smiled and turned back to Thad. "The Beta will be the only wolf able to find his mate," she announced.