1. It All Falls Down

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WARNING, this book is SIGNIFICANTLY mature...in physical violence, TRIGGERS, and intimacy. Take this caution carefully before you read it! 

Pic above: Leander (Lee-ander), Hycinth (Hi-sinth)

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Pic above: Leander (Lee-ander), Hycinth (Hi-sinth)

Chapter 1—It All Falls Down

Hycinth (age 15)


"Daddy!" The word came out as a gasping scream. I sputtered and coughed in the upstairs hallway, my lungs already dangerously full of smoke. The fire crackled all around us—my childhood home going up in flames.

My father gripped my shoulders tightly, painfully, giving me a little shake. The eyes of his Wolf glowed with fury and hate. Not at me. But for the Alpha who had come to destroy him. The monster intent on cutting us all down and wreaking havoc...until not a person or a possession remained.

My father yelled to be heard over the roar and crackling of wood around us, "Get back, Hycinth! Go to Luca at the safe house! Go now! Run!"

"No, Daddy!" I wailed again, tears streaming down my face. I didn't want to leave him. He was hurt, bleeding from several deep claw and bite wounds on his body. The scent of iron oxide, a byproduct of his leaking blood, drifted into my sensitive nose, combining with the oppressive stench and carbon dioxide burning in the air. I could barely breathe.

His beautiful face twisted, the depth of his agony, severe. Tears trailed down his dirty cheeks. His voice cracked, "I love you, Princess."

I stared at him in disbelief. The Wolf who had been the strongest of us all, the fiercest warrior in our Pack. That same Wolf who had indulged his little girl, letting me dress him up for tea parties with my bears, and singing me silly songs every night before bed. That man—the one I loved more than any other person in the world—was saying goodbye to me.

Forever.

He knew his fate. He accepted it.

But I didn't think my young heart and mind would survive.

And that's when I saw him. The monster.

The Alpha of Adamant Moon—Leander!

The subject of legends and horrors. Violence so brutal, even his own men struggled to stomach it. Like a demon, straight from the churning pits of hell, he appeared at the top of the stairs at the end of the long hallway. My father spun around, tucking me behind him, his body shaking in fury.

Alpha Leander was bigger than life, chest so broad he filled what remained of the charred hallway. Sinewy muscles flexed and contracted with each ragged breath. Pitch black hair shined like mica even with the clinging dirt and falling bits of debris. A short, neatly trimmed 5 o'clock shadow, goatee and mustache framed the sharp-edged cleft of his jaw and emphasized his straight nose and high crested cheeks. His face was made up of angles, all hard and severe. And all man.

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