Authors: Jodie B Cooper
Tags: #dragons, #adventure, #short story, #love story, #destiny
Not waiting for an answer, Sarah disappeared, leaving Alex and Lizzie alone.
He turned his attention to his beloved mate. His heart filled with such love, he felt as if it would burst.
Her beautiful gray eyes turned bright purple; a certain indication the dragon in his arms was highly emotional.
“Let’s get you home,”
he said softly in her mind, wanting her inside the safety of his estate.
“Not until you’re mine,”
she said firmly.
He bent his head, about to question her, when the force of her lifeBud being opened burst through his head. The tiny organ, nestled in the middle of her brain, called to him in the sweetest tone he’d ever heard. It demanded his instant attention, not willing to wait a single second.
He agreed with the urgent demand, not hesitating.
He snapped his lifeBud open. The living organ, which held mental tendrils of his very soul, stretched outward toward Lizzie. The moment his seeking tendrils touched hers, the instant the two tiny organs connected, shook him to his very core. The individual tendrils wrapped together, entwining so tightly that the mental threads became one, permanently tying two people together, forever blending their emotions.
He trembled as her joy flowed within him. Her love pulsed around him, curling and caressing him as only a lover could.
“Mia Cara, My Beloved,”
he whispered lovingly in her mind.
Lizzie shivered under the love and joy pouring from Alex. Their newly established lifeBond pulsed, flooding her with his determination to protect her and keep her forever safe.
The forest disappeared as Alex teleported them into his bedroom. He was heading toward the bed when she stopped him, a single light touch to his bare arm.
His lips brushed her forehead. “Love, the bed is yours. Until you are ready I’ll sleep in the connecting room.”
Tears brimmed in her eyes, and she shook her head. “Alex…”
He didn’t let her finish. “I can only imagine the horrors you went through. Lizzie, my dearest, as long as you are with me, I’ll wait forever.”
She didn’t want to wait. That was the problem. “You’re right, what they did was horrid. But the kind of torture you’re talking about happened a very long time ago.” She hesitated, knowing it wasn’t going to be that simple. She still had nightmares. “I do need time, but not forever. I want you near me, even if it’s simply holding me. Nothing can make the memories disappear, but your touch will create a shield of happy memories.”
“Of course, Mia Cara, whatever I can do,” he held her close, rubbing his cheek against her smooth head, “you have but to tell me.”
It didn’t seem to bother Alex, but she hated not having hair. The wretched guards shaved her bald once a week as a form of mental torture. It worked. She looked up into the gold plated mirror decorating the wall, detesting the image of her baldhead. She curled her lips in distaste. Her skin was pale and dirty. She shuddered. She wasn’t dirty. She was filthy.
Her stomach growled. Hunger was such a constant companion that she thought nothing of it until Alex jerked like he’d been physically hit.
“Forgive my neglect, I just told Archibald to bring up some broth and to hurry.” Alex glanced worriedly into her eyes as he spoke of his devoted butler.
“Don’t tell anyone I’m here.” She ordered suddenly, terrified for his safety. “Guardian Clara is a traitor. She came to me earlier today, trying to force me into telling her where your escape tunnel was at.”
“Hush, no worries, I mentally changed all the protections around the estate as soon as we ported in.” Once again, he started toward the bed.
She shook her head, emphatically pointing toward the bathroom. “More than anything, I want to be clean again.”
He chuckled, and tendril of his humor slid through her. “A bath it is.”
She smiled in return, and laid her head on his shoulder. “Nope, first I want a shower to get all the crude off then a long hot bath.”
He carefully set her on the marble counter between two large sinks, and gently cupped her chin in his large hand. His eyes gazed into hers; dark with emotion, his eyes turned a brilliant grass green, not even remotely human looking. “I’m not leaving you in the shower alone. You’re too weak.”
She slightly smiled at his arrogant announcement. If she hadn’t felt his fear for her, she might have argued with him. “Agreed.”
And with that simple word, he proceeded to help her take a shower. She insisted on scrubbing up three times and was considering a fourth when she felt his humor fighting with his worry.
“Archibald is waiting with the broth. You need to eat.” He insisted, holding her gaze as water poured around them.
She nodded her agreement. “Please, start the bath first.”
He gently lowered her into the large tub, pouring a large amount of her favorite scented bath oil in the deepening water. He waited for the tub to fill. His scowl would have scared a lesser person, but she had a direct link to why he was so snarly.
“Stop fretting that I’ll drown. It’s not that deep.”
He blinked and grinned sheepishly.
With a nod, he turned and went into the bedroom, but left the door open a few inches in case she needed him. She smiled, feeling warm and well loved. She had forgotten how attentive and caring he had always been.
She heard him talking to Archibald. Actually, he only had time to greet the butler, before the loyal servant snapped at Alex, ripping her mate to shreds.
“How dare you bring some hussy here, in our Lady’s room?” Archibald demanded. His heated words heavy with pain, not letting Alex get in a comment. “You’re even letting her use Lady Elizabeth’s bath oils.”
The lanky fairy, a normally cheerful house brownie, suddenly grew hostile. “How dare you cheat on her! I’ve been with you for fifteen hundred years and I have never, not once, disrespected you, but if you let that hussy sleep in Lady Elizabeth’s bed I’ll quit!”
Alex’s mood shifted from shocked to respect.
“I missed you too, Archy,” Lizzie called softly, knowing the big, brown-eyed man would hear her.
She heard his footsteps jerk to halt.
Alex’s laughter echoed in her head as he sent her a mental image. Archibald’s eyes bugged-out as he jerked to a halt two-steps short of barging into the bathroom.
“She’s safe, but I don’t want anyone to know she is here. It seems there are several guardians who aren’t to be trusted.”
Archibald readily agreed with Alex, mentioning a couple of staff he would send home.
Alex told him to have guards escort them off the property.
The next afternoon, she woke to the smell of fresh yeast bread, bacon and a dozen other mouth-watering aromas. Alex’s loved filled her to the very brim and overflowed. Her eyes snapped open.
He sat on the edge of the bed with a pair of plaid sleep pants on. He smiled the sweetest smile she had ever seen. She was certainly a bit biased, but she thought he was the most handsome man in all of Sídhí. She paused, trying to separate her emotion from fact. She didn’t think his love swayed her opinion, even though the intense emotion cascaded through her in a constant flow. She had seen the way other women watched him.
They ate breakfast slowly, asking each other a thousand questions. After she cleaned up, they both dressed in sweats. His were the darkest blue with black trim. Hers were pink with dark gray trim, and so soft; she couldn’t quit stroking the material.
He carried her down a short hall, toward the family section of the castle.
“You’re about to burst with excitement.” Lizzie touched his cheek, unable to stop herself. She was half-afraid she’d wake-up and still be chained in the bowels of TèVarrn.
“I have a surprise for you. Actually several, but I think the first one will top everything else.”
Since he had his hands quite full, she opened a set of double doors. The doors swung open, and she smiled. Pleased that she remembered where he was taking her.
It was a large informal den. Blocky, leather sofas and chairs created several sitting areas. Several more over stuffed sofas curled around the far wall, immediately in front of a huge screen.
Several things had changed during her imprisonment. The most noticeable was the massive flat screen TV attached to the wall. It appeared technology had made several jumps since she’d been in captivity. She couldn’t wait to see what else had changed in the world.
“I take it the TV is my surprise?”
He chuckled, and warmth spread through her. “Not even close.”
She glanced up in time to see his face-splitting grin.
Movement caught her attention. She unwillingly turned her attention away from Alex.
Next to the sofa, in front of the large TV, a muscle-bound young man stood up. He looked at Lizzie for a few seconds before a huge smile spread across his face. An instant later, a beautiful young woman stood up. Her face swiveled from the young man toward Lizzie.
For a single heartbeat, they simply stood staring at each other.
Recognition hit like lightning. Lizzie gasped and flung-out her arms. Her eyes filled with tears; she had thought his whispered words were simply a dream.
If Alex hadn’t had a firm hold on her, she would’ve fallen to the floor.
Tears streamed down the young woman’s face as she shot forward, running toward Lizzie in the blink of an eye. “Momma!”
~ The End ~
Snippet: Vampire’s Forbidden Territory
Jared pulled Katie closer. His joy flowed into her body through their lifeBond. His deep laughter echoed through her mind a split instant before his warm breath tickled her pointed ear, her overly sensitive ear, making her laugh all the harder. There were times the elf half of her heritage was more enjoyable than the vampire half.
“I love it.”
Her enthusiastically spoken words included not only her first ride on a dragon, but the new road her life was taking.
“We can see for miles up here.”
Guardian Alexander was flying them across miles of rugged mountains located within Dragon Valley, a second dimensional bubble with the exact physical terrain as Earth. Hundreds of valleys dotted Earth, some small, some huge. Very few Sídhí Elders agreed upon how many dimensional bubbles actually existed or even how they had been created.
One thing she knew for certain, there would never be peace between the valleys.
Katie snorted, but not in humor. Creating
between the Sídhí races was the official reason for gathering the warring races – vampire, elf, shapeshifter, fairy and others – together for summer camp, but creating peace wasn't why the children of the most influential politicians from several dozen of the most powerful valleys had been invited.
being a very loose term to what really happened.
When The Dragon Council sent out invitations to attend summer camp, they expected immediate agreement. If any invitation went unanswered the dragons simply coerced the royalty (or politicians) of that valley into participating by closing that valley’s gateway to Earth.
The concept of creating a peace camp sounded honorable. The reality of camp was not honorable nor peace inducing. Katie and her cabin mates found that out the hard way. Peace between the Sídhí races had nothing to do with the four-month camp. Finding dead bodies and becoming a walking target had that odd ‘wake-up and smell the roses’ effect.
After the Khr'Vurr attacked Katie and her cabin mates, the black-scaled dragon had been placed in charge of keeping Katie's group safe. Protection duty was Guardian Alexander’s official job. Unofficially, the black dragon was more concerned with finding the people who tried to kill them, not that she disagreed with him.
She desperately wanted the Khr'Vurr caught. She just really hoped he hurried. She was not a lover of bathing in ice-cold mountain streams. But until the guardians caught the guilty parties, the teens were safer away from the main campgrounds. At least, that’s what Guardian Alexander said. She had her doubts that anywhere was very safe. Truth be told, she felt like bait.
Glossary of Sídhí Terms
– Chi’Kehra is the title for the true elf monarch. In known history, there have only been two. Every elf baby is tested at birth; the baby’s hand is sliced open and dipped into pure synth crystal. Any child that has a scar after this process is declared as the ultimate elf leader, Chi’Kehra. The Chi’Kehra is the only person that can completely manipulate synth crystal in its pure form.
– 1.) Dragon shifters are a race of people originally from Sídhí. They have the ability to change their shape to that of a specific animal/dragon. Each sub-race (Clan) has various strengths provided by the synth crystal in their blood. A person’s first shift into dragon can take place before or after puberty. A shifter in human form smells human. They consider the term
a slur, as they are dragon. 2.) Dragons are a very intelligent, and highly dangerous, Sídhí animal.
– The DeLeigh is group of dragons that have the gift of seeing a person’s aura. Dragons within the clan are not necessarily related by blood.
– A nearly extinct clan of dragon shifters whose gift can destroy a blooming lifeBud before a bond is created between lifeMates. Dragons within the clan are not necessarily related by blood.
- Race of people originally from Sídhí. The have a rigidly strict code of honor. They give an oath of fealty to whomever they choose. First, they always give a blood oath of fealty to the unknown Chi’Kehra, second oath goes to their house, and third oath may go to their valley or their liege lord. Due to synth crystal, they have increased sense of smell, sight, strength and mental capabilities. They have pointed ears, approximately a half inch to one inch taller than a mundane human’s ear. The pupil (black center) and the iris (colored portion of their eye) are larger than a mundane human’s eye.