Authors: Alyssa Day
The Warriors of Poseidon Series by Alyssa Day
High Prince Conlan’s Story
Lord Vengeance’s Story
Lord Justice’s Story
VAMPIRE IN ATLANTIS
HEART OF ATLANTIS
High Priest Alaric’s Story
“Wild Hearts in Atlantis” from WILD THING
A Warriors of Poseidon Novella
A Special from Berkley Sensation
BERKLEY SENSATION, NEW YORK
THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP
Published by the Penguin Group
Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, USA
Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario M4P 2Y3, Canada (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.) • Penguin Books Ltd., 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England • Penguin Group Ireland, 25 St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2, Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd.) • Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124, Australia (a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty. Ltd.) • Penguin Books India Pvt. Ltd., 11 Community Centre, Panchsheel Park, New Delhi—110 017, India • Penguin Group (NZ), 67 Apollo Drive, Rosedale, Auckland 0632, New Zealand (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd.) • Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty.) Ltd., 24 Sturdee Avenue, Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196, South Africa
Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
“Wild Hearts in Atlantis” previously appeared in
, published by Berkley Sensation.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.
WILD HEARTS IN ATLANTIS
A Berkley Sensation Special / published by arrangement with the author
Berkley Sensation Special / October 2012
Copyright © 2007 by Alesia Holliday.
Heart of Atlantis
by Alyssa Day copyright © 2012 by Alesia Holliday.
Cover design by Edwin Tse. Image of Ocean Wave © CK/Shutterstock.
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights. Purchase only authorized editions.
For information, address: The Berkley Publishing Group,
a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.,
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014.
Berkley Sensation Books are published by The Berkley Publishing Group,
a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.,
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014.
is a registered trademark of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
The “B” design is a trademark of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
This one is for Cindy Hwang,
who is quite a wild thing herself.
And, always, for Judd.
Table of Contents
Bastien surveyed the battlefield, jaw rhythmically clenching and unclenching. “Strategy is everything in war. Watch and learn, youngling.”
His opponent narrowed his eyes and studied the field. “Proceed at your own peril, warrior. Know that I will crush you into the ashes of ignominious defeat.”
“Oh, for the gods’ sake, will you two get on with it, already? I have dibs on the next game, and I have a feeling air hockey and I are going to be very good friends,” Denal said, from where he sprawled out on the long, low couch. “You’re going
, ladies, so just hurry it up, already.”
Bastien laughed. “Damn, Justice. Looks like your unparalleled rep as a kick-ass warrior may be taking some heat, if little Denal can get away with calling you a lady.”
Lord Justice flipped his waist-length braid of blue hair back over his shoulder and sneered. “Seems like he called
a lady, too, in case you missed it.”
Bastien served a lethal hit straight into Justice’s goal. “Hey, I’m golden. When you’re nearly seven feet tall, these pitiful insults bounce right off. Atlantis has never seen a warrior the likes of me,” he said, grinning. Then he threw his head
back and drew in a lungful of pure, sea-filtered air and gazed out over the balcony railing at the glory of Atlantis. White marble buildings gleaming in the liquid gold of magic-created sunlight. Poseidon’s Temple the grandest of them all, proudly standing tall in the center with its gold-capped columns. The deep, unfathomable blue of the ocean currents gently gliding past the dome that covered them all.
“It’s good to be home,” he murmured, almost to himself. He was tired. Hells, they were all tired. The missions to the surface, never less than dangerous, had turned lethal lately. Poseidon’s Warriors had protected humanity for more than eleven thousand years, but always in the shadows, under the radar.
Incogfuckingnito, as Ven would say.
Bastien thought back to his training and the words that were burned into his soul—the creed of the Warriors of Poseidon:
All will wait. And watch. And protect.
And serve as first warning on the eve of humanity’s destruction.
Then, and only then, Atlantis will rise.
For we are the Warriors of Poseidon, and the mark of the Trident we bear serves as witness to our sacred duty to safeguard mankind.
“Even when they’re stupid enough to let vampires into their Congress and shape-shifters into their media,” he growled.
Justice raised an eyebrow at him, but before he could make some crack about warriors who talked to themselves, the enormous wooden doors, inlaid with gold, silver, and copper-colored orichalcum, that led from the spacious balcony to the palace’s royal audience room, swung slowly open. A warrior strode out to the balcony. Bastien tried not to laugh, as Denal nearly fell off the couch in his haste to stand at attention.
“Lord Vengeance,” Denal snapped off, arms rigidly at his side.
Ven never broke stride. “At ease, dude. Seriously, Denal, we’ve gotta get you over this rookie thing before you drive us all nuts.”
Denal’s face hardened, and he appeared to age a century’s worth of days right before their eyes. “I think being murdered by vampires and then brought back to life as a result of our lady queen’s sacrifice is a legitimate entry to the title of seasoned warrior, my prince.”
Ven’s own face sobered. “And so it is, Denal.” Then he grinned again. “But if you call me ‘my prince’ again, I’m gonna kick your ass.”
Bastien figured it was a good time to change the subject. “Speaking of the wedding, when is that blessed event occurring, Ven?”
Ven turned to him, and Bastien realized anew the strain Ven had been under lately. The planes of Ven’s face were harsher and more severely drawn than they’d been just weeks before.
Before High Prince Conlan had met Lady Riley and the two of them killed the vampire goddess, Anubisa.
“When does Conlan wed Lady Riley? I’m looking forward to that celebration. Atlantis deserves to ring with joy, after these weeks of plotting out the upcoming war with the vampire–shape-shifter alliance.”
Ven glanced around the newly renovated balcony, then shook his head and smiled. “I still can’t believe Riley talked Conlan into turning this space into a games room. We’ve even got foosball. I love that woman.”
Justice finally spoke. “Everyone does.” He walked over to a support column and leaned against it, the hilt of his ever-present sword rising above one shoulder. “You called it, naming her Lady Sunshine. She spreads light and happiness everywhere she goes,” he said, sarcasm drenching his words. “Even a few of the Elders serving on the Council actually smiled at her when she stopped by to mention that they should—oh,
no big deal
—just maybe change the way everything in Atlantis has been done for millennia.”
Bastien had heard enough. “Cut it out, Justice. Riley has the heart of a lion, and Poseidon himself named her as Prince Conlan’s future wife and queen. Even now she carries Conlan’s son. So the sooner we have the wedding, the better for all of us.”
Justice narrowed his eyes. “The better for Conlan and Riley, at least. The rest of us? I’m not so sure.”
Ven sliced a hand through the air. “I don’t want to hear any more of that shit from you, Justice. As one of the Seven, Conlan trusts you to have his back. That includes battling political nightmares, not just bloodsuckers and shape-shifters.”
Justice bowed slightly and headed for the door, but Ven called him back. “Stay. It’s actually fortuitous I caught you three together, because I need to talk to you all.”
“What is it, Ven?” Bastien asked, immediately coming to full alert. He was the most senior of the Seven, and always the most alive when serving his liege. The parts of his soul made for aught else than battle were long-since shriveled and dead inside him. He never minded kicking a little vamp or shape-shifter ass, either.
“We’ve decided to begin forming our own alliances to try to catch up with the ten-year head start the vamps have on us. Barrabas had his nasty claws in every political intrigue in the country, in his role as Senator Barnes.”
Bastien barked out a laugh. “Yeah, and didn’t it warm your heart to see how that bloodsucker bought it?”
The four warriors all shuddered simultaneously. Evil three-thousand-year-old vampire or not, there was something about watching a guy get his nuts ripped off that sent a cold chill snaking up your ’nads. When Anubisa had yanked Barrabas’s undead heart from his body, it’d almost been a relief.
Ven recovered first. “Yeah. Well, here’s the deal. Conlan wants to name an official Atlantean liaison to the shape-shifters.”
“Makes sense. The furballs are big on protocol and hierarchy. The alphas of the various prides, streaks, packs, and all the other groups are way less likely to go prickly if they’re dealing with somebody they perceive as having status,” Bastien said, nodding. “Justice is the perfect choice. Hell, with all that blue hair, he looks half-animal himself.”