The Weight of a Wing (The Stolen Wings Book 1)

BOOK: The Weight of a Wing (The Stolen Wings Book 1)
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The Weight of a Wing

 

The Stolen Wings Book 1

 

 

IOANA VISAN

This
is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the
product of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. Any resemblance to
actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

 

The
Weight of a Wing

The
Stolen Wings Book 1

 

Copyright
© 2015 Ioana Visan

All
rights reserved.

 

Cover
Art by Vega Mandalika

http://xilveroxas.deviantart.com

 

No
part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any
form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the
prior written permission of the copyright holder.

 

First
eBook Edition: April 2015

Alise has achieved the impossible. The Fairy survived having
her wings chopped off, and now finds herself in the human world, hunted like
prey by the sadistic Gorem once again.

With her help, locating him means that the two Guardians of
Balance, Rafe and Vale, will not only be able to make him pay for maiming her,
but hold him accountable for the deaths of other Fairies, as well.

However, Gorem has plans of his own for the rogue Fairy.
With the help of a Wizard, Fabian, and an army of monsters, Gorem will stop at
nothing to recapture Alise.

With already so much on the line, Alise not only has to keep
herself safe, but will also have to protect her new human friend, Cassie, in
the process.

Who will win the battle of good versus evil? Is capturing
Gorem worth risking what remains of Alise's life?

 

Table of Contents

 

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter
Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter
Seven

Chapter
Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter
Eleven

Chapter
Twelve

Chapter
Thirteen

Chapter
Fourteen

Chapter
Fifteen

Chapter
Sixteen

Chapter
Seventeen

Chapter
Eighteen

Chapter
Nineteen

Chapter
Twenty

Chapter
Twenty-One

Chapter
Twenty-Two

Chapter
Twenty-Three

Chapter
Twenty-Four

Chapter
Twenty-Five

Chapter
Twenty-Six

Chapter
Twenty-Seven

Chapter
Twenty-Eight

Chapter
Twenty-Nine

Chapter
Thirty

Chapter
Thirty-One

Chapter
Thirty-Two

Chapter
Thirty-Three

Chapter
Thirty-Four

Chapter
Thirty-Five

Chapter
Thirty-Six

Chapter
Thirty-Seven

Chapter
Thirty-Eight

Chapter
Thirty-Nine

Chapter
Forty

Chapter
Forty-One

Chapter
Forty-Two

Chapter
Forty-Three

Chapter
Forty-Four

Chapter
Forty-Five

Chapter
Forty-Six

Chapter
Forty-Seven

Chapter
Forty-Eight

Chapter
Forty-Nine

Chapter
Fifty

Acknowledgments

About the
Author

Books by
Ioana Visan

Chapter One

 

In a world where sources of real magic were rare, anyone
used to living and breathing by it was constantly aware of its presence and
could easily locate it, even if the magic was several kilometers away. In
reverse, its absence was just as poignant, a red flag, too bright to be ignored
because it had to hurt.

With the spell working, he saw her in his head, the
beautiful brunette with dark eyes, long dark hair, and even longer legs,
sitting in that booth inside the bar, quietly sipping on her drink and watching
the agitated conversation going on around her. She had a calm demeanor while
her body screamed for a spark of magic. It was a craving so intense, he could
feel it over two corridors and through four sets of walls, her pain resonating
inside him like a black hole.

In vain, he told himself he was doing her a favor, but it
was not the case—nothing good could come out of this for her. He was doing this
for selfish reasons, and she happened to be caught in the middle of it. A
mission… That’s what she was, only she wasn’t like any other mission. The more
he thought about it, about her, the more he hated what had been done to her and
what was likely to happen if he followed his orders. Sometimes he hated his
job. When he was done with her, she would hate him, too.

He was so screwed.

 

* * *

 

“You people are ruining our city,” Cassie said for the
thousandth time.

Alise glanced at her friend seated next to her at the table,
fully engrossed in the debate on the pros and cons of building a modern
downtown in the city. It happened every time Cassie dropped by to whisk her
away for some retail therapy. Since the summer had started and they were right
in the middle of the exam session, Cassie was stressed so they seemed to be doing
a lot of shopping lately.

“That park of yours … It’s not a park. It’s a handkerchief!”
Cassie shook her honey-colored, shoulder-length curls.

Alise tuned out the rest of the tirade. She knew the lecture
by heart. It wasn’t even Cassie’s hometown. The girl had come to study
international law at the university—one of the best in the country—but she had
adopted it as her own. Cassie would never agree with tearing down the entire
park behind the old Culture Palace, conveniently renaming it Palas, and replacing
it with office buildings, restaurants, and hotels, with a patch of green in the
middle of it all.

As a member of the team in charge of the redesign of the
park, Alise saw both sides of the coin. People had to eat, and this business
was much bigger than they were. If their small architecture firm hadn’t
snatched the contract, it would have been some other company who probably would
have done a sloppy job. Alise admired her friend’s determination and dedication
to the cause, but she would have to get Cassie away from there soon before the
girl started to annoy her colleagues.

Cassie turned to her. “Well, you’re the landscape expert.
Tell them!”

Alise blinked, having not paid attention to what they were
saying. The skin between her shoulder blades itched, and she had an odd feeling
that someone was staring at her. She had to fight the impulse to turn around.
Still, from the corner of her eye, she noticed him standing on the other side
of the glass wall in the busy gallery. The dark shadow towering over her made
her shiver. They had found her. And now they would want to take her away. She
didn’t want to go back. Nothing good waited for her on the other side … no
happiness, no hope. She was lucky she had escaped alive in the first place.

As a rebellious act, Alise refused to acknowledge the
menacing presence, but the silhouette wouldn’t go away.

“Not now,” she hissed under her breath. In fact, she meant
not
here.
They wouldn’t come to pick her up in the middle of a crowded bar,
would they? People would freak out, so they had to stay hidden. After all,
there
were
rules.

“Sorry. Did you say something?” Cassie’s soft brown eyes
watched Alise with curiosity. “You look pale. Are you all right?”

“I’m fine.” Alise pushed back her chair, wishing to crush
the shadow behind her, and got up. “I just need some air.”

“Do you want me to come with you?” Cassie asked, concern in
her voice.

“No need. I’ll be fine,” Alise murmured. Grabbing her purse,
she walked out of the bar. She heard a faint chuckle as the silhouette behind
her dematerialized, but that had only been inside her head because the presence
was a projection. No one else had seen it.

She didn’t need a compass to show her the way. Her body felt
the magic, which was so rare in these parts, and steered her in the right direction.
She crossed the gallery, her high heels clicking on the tiles, and turned
around the corner where
he
was waiting near a closed exit.

For a long moment, they just stared at each other. He was
not much different than what she had expected. They hadn’t changed the uniform
in recent years. It was the same black leather long coat that hid firm muscles
and all kinds of weapons inside—no surprise there. Crossbreeds. They sure made
them pretty. And deadly. What a pain.

He was one head taller than her and twice as heavy. She
could never match his strength without magic. And all crossbreeds did was
fight. Maybe not right now, but soon. It was the reason for their entire
existence.

From below short golden locks, quicksilver eyes peered at
her intently.

That look made her uncomfortable, even more so than the
presence of the magic. His eyes trailed from her face to her curves, wrapped in
a short khaki designer dress, down her long legs to her strappy sandals, and
then jumped back to her eyes. Everywhere his gaze went, her skin burned. Did he
do it on purpose? No one would have dared to look at her like that on the other
side. But she was a nobody here, just another face in the crowd. She had no
rights.

It meant she also had no responsibilities. She didn’t
have
to help him or listen to him. By agreeing to meet with him, she was doing him a
favor. That thought alone, as crazy as it was, brought a smug smile to her
face.

“What do you want?” Alise asked, getting straight to the
point.

“I’m—”

“I know what you are. You’re a Guardian.” And he was not
supposed to be there. She had traveled a long way to get away from anything
related to her old life.

“Well, I was going to say I’m Rafe, but if you want to keep
things impersonal…” He shrugged, his tone teasing, not caring one way or the
other.

She glanced at the ceiling, lacking the patience to put up
with his antics. “Again, what do you want?”

His smirk stayed, but his eyes turned serious. “I need a
Fairy.”

“I don’t do those things anymore.” She shook her head, her
ponytail bouncing on her shoulders. “Go find another one.”

“I’ve searched the entire city,” he said. “There are no
other Fairies around. You’ve gone to great lengths to find a place so utterly
devoid of magic.”

And she intended to keep it that way. “If you know I’m a
Fairy, then you also know I’ve lost my wings. I can’t help you. Ask a Witch.
There are plenty around.” Human witches, yes, but not Witches in the way they
knew them. Still, Alise couldn’t help enjoying the idea of seeing the Guardian
running around the city, trying to find the real deal.

“I can’t go to a Witch with this,” Rafe said.

A Witch would have burned his ass just for daring to request
assistance. They were one of the most uncooperative creatures out there and,
given their nature, they could hardly be forced into doing something against
their will. Alise envied them.

“All I need is a location spell. You can still do that.” He
sounded determined, as if he
knew
.

Their gazes locked as a battle of wills commenced. Alise was
about to say no when another man appeared near Rafe. He had come from around
the corner, but he had moved so fast, it looked like he had materialized on the
spot. He was slimmer, but he had the same gear and was close in height. Under
the long brown hair that fell to his shoulders, partially hiding his narrow
face, the smoky grey eyes looked restless.

Alise rolled her eyes and muttered, “I should have
remembered you traveled in pairs.” Where she came from, people used to say,
Careful
with those Guardians. One of them is going to betray you sooner or later
.
She wondered which one it was going to be. She wasn’t anxious to find out.

“How are we doing?” asked the newcomer.

Rafe peered at Alise. “Still negotiating.”

“You didn’t offer anything,” she countered quickly.
Physically, they
could
force her, although it remained to be seen
whether they would succeed in making her cast the spell. Legally, however, they
had no ground to stand on. After her disgrace, she’d left their realm. She
didn’t owe them anything.

“Oh, did I forget to mention who we’re looking for?” Rafe
feigned surprise.

His companion shook his head, obviously not in the mood to
play Rafe’s cat and mouse game. Or maybe he just didn’t like her.

“It’s Gorem,” the blond Guardian said, his bright eyes
fixated on her, waiting for a reaction.

Alise’s jaw clenched. Of course she knew that name. Gorem
was the one responsible for her misfortune. “He’s here?”

“All signs point to somewhere in the area.”

Alise went quiet for a moment. She had hoped for and feared
this for a long time. Right now, she didn’t know how she felt anymore. She was
stunned, frozen inside like the roots of her missing wings. “What will you do
with him when you catch him?” When, not if, as Guardians never abandoned their
missions.

“Attempt to take him back for proper punishment …  kill him
if he puts up any resistance,” Rafe said. He must have seen a glimpse of
suspicion on her face because he added, “The Council sent us. He’s not
protected anymore.”

That was an interesting turn of events. It didn’t help her
situation, but it did feel good to know they hunted him like the criminal he
was. Death would be too good for him, but it would have to do. The Guardians
weren’t famous for their mercy.

“So, are you going to help us?” the other Guardian asked.
“Before he disappears again?”

“Where are you staying?”

“At the Horizon Hotel,” Rafe said.

“I’ll be there at midnight.”

The Guardians took off in a hurry … no thanks, no goodbye,
nothing. She hadn’t expected anything else, though. This was a business
arrangement. Still, once she found herself alone in the corridor, she wondered
briefly if she hadn’t imagined the whole thing. But, no, magic withdrawal did
not cause hallucinations. What she had feared the most was finally happening
and, in the end, one of them would be dead. There was no way around it.

Alise drew in a long breath and thought about the
ingredients she needed for the spell. She was not going down without a fight,
not after everything she had already lost. Good thing she had brought her purse
with her. She could leave right away and get to the market before it closed.
She wasn’t going to make it back to the table.

BOOK: The Weight of a Wing (The Stolen Wings Book 1)
3.31Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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