Authors: Morgan Kelley
Copyright © 2016 Morgan Kelley LLC
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This book is intended for mature audiences and contains graphic violence, explicit sexual activity and disturbing imagery
Copyright 2016 cover by Laura Gordon
Other works by Morgan Kelley:
The Blood Betrayal
FBI Romance Series
The Killing Times (Book 1)
Sacred Burial Grounds (Book 2)
True Love Lost (Book 3)
Deep Dark Mire (Book 4)
Fire Burns Hot (Book 5)
Darkness of Truth (Book 6)
Devil Hath Come (Book 7)
Consumed by Wrath (Book 8)
Redemption is Here (Book 9)
Dead Shall Speak (Book 10)
Pledging to Die (Book 11)
Slay Bells Ring (Book 12)
Past will Haunt (Book 13)
Choices will Destroy (Book 14)
Croft & Croft Romance Adventure Series
Celestia is Falling (1)
Vegas is Dying (2)
Christmas is Killing (3)
Love is Bleeding (4)
Heaven is Weeping (5)
Hell is Burning (6)
Justice is Dead (7)
Blood Red Rage (Book 1)
Lost & Broken (Book 2)
Unthinkable Games (Book 3)
Truth is Found (Book 4)
Haven of Nightmares (Book 5)
The Carter Chronicles Trilogy
Sinner Repent (1)
Sinner Realized (2)
Sinner Reborn (3)
Oracle/The Phoenix Files
Oracle Rising (book 1)
The Harcourte Vampyre Society series
Dangerous Revelations (1)
Dangerous Choices (2)
Dangerous Misery (3)
Dangerous Retaliation (4)
Behind Closed Doors Anthology
Illegal Fantasies ~ Behind Closed Doors (1)
Romance Under Arrest~ Behind Closed Doors (2)
Holiday Reinforcements ~ Behind Closed Doors (3)
~~~~ About the Author ~~~~
Morgan Kelley lives in the beautiful Pocono Mountains with her husband and two children. After attending college at Penn State University and studying Criminal Justice, Morgan knew her only true passion in life would be murder and books. She put them both together and began her career as a writer. Other than books and writing, you can find Morgan hanging out in her garden and digging in the dirt.
Her other works include: The Junction, Serial Sins, The Blood Betrayal, The Killing Times (1), Sacred Burial Grounds (2), True Love Lost (3), Deep Dark Mire (4), Fire Burns Hot (5), Darkness of Truth (6), Devil Hath Come (7), Consumed by Wrath (8), Redemption is Here (9), Dead Shall Speak (10), Pledging to Die (11), Slay Bells Ring (12), Past will Haunt (13), Choices will Destroy (14), Blood Red Rage (1) Lost & Broken (2), Unthinkable Games (3), Truth is Found (4), Haven of Nightmares (5), Celestia is Falling (1), Vegas is Dying (2), Christmas is Killing (3), Love is Bleeding (4), Heaven is Weeping (5), Hell is Burning (6), Justice is Dead (7), Dangerous Revelations (1), Dangerous Choices (2), Dangerous Misery (3), Dangerous Retaliation (4), Sinner Repent (1), Sinner Realized (2), Sinner Reborn (3), Oracle Rising (1), Illegal Fantasies (Anthology 1), Romance Under Arrest (Anthology 2), and Holiday Reinforcements (Anthology 3)
To my bestie,
I’m the luckiest girl alive. You set me on this path 30 years ago with my very first Nancy Drew book, and I’m blessed.
Here’s to 30 more years, a house full of cats, and the good Jell-o when we’re old and crotchety.
PS. We even have matching initials.
Roman Remington, your past is calling you…
Ten Years ago
He watched them.
As they bustled around the grounds of the school, he silently picked out the ones he would take. They were the ideal age, and they would be flawless for what he had in mind. Each one filled the needs he had, and they would be perfect.
He didn’t need one.
Two wouldn’t be enough.
He needed three.
Everything had to be in threes in order to work. The spells, the magick, and the blessings called for it. The slightest aberration would prove his downfall. When it came down to it, there was very little room for error.
He needed this in the worst way, so he would give the deities exactly what they wanted. If he wanted the reward, he had no other choice but to do it.
He didn’t have any other option.
If he didn't take them, bleed them, and cast the spell, then he’d have no way to get what he so desperately needed.
So, his mind was made up.
He was doing this.
As he watched the first girl heading his way, he knew she would be perfect for this kind of ‘thing’. A little part of him felt horrible that he was going to do this to her. She was innocent, sweet, and didn’t deserve to be his sacrifice. Deep down, to the darkest corner of his soul, he knew that he was doing something horribly wrong.
He couldn’t stop.
This was the only way to get the outcome he needed.
If there were some other way, he would have pursued it, and taken that route. Only, there wasn’t. What it came down to was his desires and longings. What mattered most was that he was lonely, and he couldn’t continue like this.
Without this spell, which he’d been given from some dusty old book, he’d never find happiness.
Three offerings were needed.
He had to make up his mind in that split second, and he couldn’t look back. Once it had begun, it needed to be completed, or it was all in vain.
If he took her, his life would forever change.
He was worried, but he believed that it would work. Part of the spell meant believing in it. Wasn’t that what she had told him?
So, he made the choice.
It was cast in stone in that moment, and fate would forever be altered to this path.
As the first girl cut through the trees, practically heading into his arms, he grabbed her. As she began struggling against him, he threw the saturated towel across her nose and mouth.
She struggled for a few more seconds, but then stopped. Number one went limp in his arms.
It was perfect.
She was out cold.
Dragging her to the trunk of his car, hidden not far in the woods, he bound and gagged her, in case she woke up. The last thing he needed was for her to regain consciousness and raise hell.
That wouldn’t do.
As soon as she was safely tucked inside the trunk, along with the tools he would later need, he went back to work.
There were still two more needed, and he had to get them before the day was over.
Tonight, the spell would happen, and the offering would be made in blood—
As he sat waiting, he began to worry about the line he’d already crossed.
If caught, his life was going to end.
He was going to jail for abduction and then murder. It was monumental, and it scared the shit out of him.
Then, to further build his resolve, he glanced down at his hand and the picture of the angel he wanted more than anything.
She was worth it.
He was doing this to get her.
She was lovely, smart, and he wanted her as his. That would take a miracle, and one hell of a spell.
When he glanced up, he saw the second girl heading his way. Unfortunately, she wasn’t alone. She was with a guy.
This wouldn’t do at all. He’d handpicked her for so many reasons, and if he had to take a substitute, it wouldn’t be the same. He had his reasons why she’d be perfect for this.
He needed him to walk away.
Closing his eyes, he began muttering a string of words he didn’t really understand. Hopefully, they were some incantation from the pages of the book. It just might be his miracle.
He finished his whispered words, and when he opened his eyes, the boy was giving her a sweet kiss goodbye.
It had worked!
Who knew he was so powerful?
Had he known that black magic worked so well, he would have dabbled in it earlier.
He was going to be fine! Now that he had this on his side, there was no reason to worry.
It helped him get over his fears.
Now he was ready.
Dousing the next rag, he waited. When the sexy girl waved enticingly at her companion, right before walking away, he knew he chose well.
She was taking the path right toward him.
As she walked by his hiding place, he reached out, grabbing her by the long blonde hair.
There could be no wasted time.
Yanking her roughly into the woods, she had no choice but to go with him. Her yelp was the only sound he heard.
Without missing a beat, he slapped the cloth over her mouth and nose, forcing her to breathe in the sickly sweet concoction.
This one was a wildcat, but honestly, he didn’t mind. The better the prey—
the stronger the spell.
Slowly, the fight began leaving her. As she stared up at him with brilliant blue eyes, he thought about the angel in the picture. She would be his.
He could tell.
After all this, he had to have her.
When the girl ceased struggling, he tossed her over his shoulder to begin the short trek toward his vehicle. Once there, he placed her inside with the first girl.
As she landed with a thud, they both moaned. He waited a few seconds to make sure they were out cold. When neither girl moved, he felt secure enough to get back to the task at hand.
Gathering his girls.
Preparing for the spell.
Securing his future.
Closing the trunk of the car, he refused to let remorse settle in. If he was going to do this, he couldn’t worry about their lives, and what was going to happen to them.
He couldn’t worry if their families would mourn their disappearances.
If he let that small worm of pity in, he knew what would happen—
he’d start to care.
No, that couldn’t be allowed.
Taking a deep breath, he forced himself to stop giving a damn.
His happiness mattered.
For once, he wanted to come first.
He didn’t want to be that screw up who never found the one. Instead, he wanted to be the
one. It was always what he craved.
It was important, and he needed to focus on that. Today, it was about reaching out and taking what was his.
The sweet angel.
Heading back to the perfect spot, he was getting edgy. He wanted to get the hell out of there, and fast.
His only goal at that point was to finish this once and for all, so he could move on with his life.
Seeing the last one, he became excited. He knew for a fact that she had to be a virgin.
Wasn’t that something black magic wanted?
He wasn’t sure, but if it was, he had scored.
She was a total nerd. There were the glasses, the book-laden bag, and the uncool clothing. She looked like some mad scientist who had just escaped from the lab.
And there was number three, heading right toward him. This had been way too easy.
Once she was in his grasp, he was officially done. This had been the hard part. What was to come…he had no idea.
As soon as she entered the path, he grabbed her. Only, she sprayed him with pepper spray and tried to escape back onto the trail that led to freedom.
It enraged him.
It infuriated him.
It made him so angry that she’d seen his face.
As he chased her, she couldn’t outrun him. Her wails for help only made him angrier. If someone heard her, he was screwed.
He couldn’t let that happen.
Right before she cleared the trees, he was on her. She was no match for him, and for that, he was grateful.
She was smaller and scared. This tiny woman was like a deer running from a hunter, and she wasn’t going to escape. He was too close to getting what he wanted.
As he pinned her petite body to the ground, she fought with everything she had.
He fought harder.
After all, he wanted it more.
As she was trapped, she began to whimper from behind his hand.
“If you scream, I’ll hurt you,” he hissed in warning into her ear.
“I won’t tell anyone what you did,” she whispered, as soon as his hand was free from her mouth. “Please, just let me go. We can forget this ever happened.”
That was a lie, and he knew it. There was no way he could let her leave.
He laughed as he pulled the soaked rag out of his pocket. “Are you a virgin?” he asked.
Either way, he had to have her for his spell.
With that, he shoved the rag roughly across her face and counted to thirty. When her eyes rolled into her head, he kept the rag in place
—just to be sure
Cautiously, he scooped her up. It pained him that she was going to die. After all, she was a sweet kid, and she was kind of pretty beneath the nerdy veneer.
Well, he didn't have a choice now.
She saw him.
She had to die.
For a few seconds, she stirred his emotions and body, but it couldn’t happen.
He’d take her blood and hide her remains.
It’s just how it had to be.
He had no choice.
He was going to make a deal with the devil, and in exchange, he was finally going to have love.
* * *
L i t t l e m o o n * * *
Five Years Later
He was finally happy.
The initial spell had been well worth it. After he’d offered the sacrifice, spilled their blood, and spoke the words, he’d gotten his wish, and it was perfect. This peace was all he ever wanted in life.
It’s all he ever needed.
For the last five years, he’d been content.
Only, now he had a huge problem.
Until that moment, he didn’t know there had been a catch to the whole thing. He never suspected that he was going to have to pay in the future for his sins of the past.
Honestly, he never thought this would work, so he never thought about what he’d have to do in order to keep the spell
Unfortunately, more blood needed to be spilled. He was going to have to make another sacrifice.
He needed to offer up the blood of three women every five years in order to be virile, strong, and keep the woman he loved. If not, the spell would die, and so would his blessings.
So, he was trapped.
There was no way he could keep her if he didn't do it. There was no way he was man enough to make her stay. With the death of the first three, he was able to hide in plain sight, but now he was forced to relive it, risking being caught.
This was the fear that his nightmares were made of each night. Then and there, he knew that he was a horrible human being for even taking that path.
Still, he was planning to do it again.
Knowing how lucky he’d gotten the first time, he chose the same hunting ground. He’d won the jackpot five years ago, and his good fortune held up once more.
After he chose them, he kept them drugged and in his trunk until the witching hour. That was when he would use the spell to gain his power.
At the quickly approaching midnight, he would start the ritual, but first he had to prep them.
They needed to be set up in just the right spots.