A wolf lost to madness. A princess destined for another. A forbidden love that might save them all.
Maddox knows he’s losing his mind. He can feel his grip on reality slipping, just as it did for his father. The reason is simple. He’s waited too long to find his mate. With Moon Madness creeping in, he fears time has run out.
Until a kidnapped princess is dropped at his feet.
Kayleigh is the daughter of his greatest rival. Yet, the instant their eyes meet he feels the rush of the mate bond. Maddox aches to claim her as his own, but failure to return Kayleigh to her pack could start a bloody war.
Honor demands her freedom. Love requires their surrender.
He woke up curled in a fetal position among the carcass of a dismembered deer.
It looked like someone had gone all Texas Chainsaw Massacre on the creature, not eating any of it, just slaughtering it for the sake of killing. The forest was dead silent around him, not a rustle of a breeze to stir the air around him, as if all the forest animals knew an apex predator was among them and had scattered. The scent of death and blood and terror lay heavy around him. Instead of rousing his hunger or even his wolf, who finally seemed sated, the smell only made him sick.
He lurched to his feet and stumbled a few yards before falling to his knees and vomiting in the bushes. Only bile came up. He rested on his side after that, sweating in the cool night air, shivering and wondering where the fuck he was.
How much time had he lost?
Damn it. He’d sworn to his Beta that he’d stay in human form, that he’d resist the call of the wolf, but the beast had been pulling him under again, more and more frequently, until sometimes, he wasn’t sure if he was a man anymore. The fear clenching his gut was real. The more he lost himself to the beast, the closer he came to losing himself entirely. If that happened, the pack would eliminate him for the safety of everyone around him. At least he had stuck to killing an animal this time. Next time, he might do worse and attack a human or one of his pack mates.
A scent tickled his nose, overlaying the smell of sickness and death. It was a mixture of maple, buttery rum, and caramel, but tainted with a sour smell of fear, sweat, and drugs. His wolf pushed to the surface, straining at the restraints he put on the beast, lured by the scent. He tried to throttle him back, but the rage that enveloped him every time his wolf took control gripped his mind.
He shifted—the painful breaking of bones and the reshaping of muscle and skin from his human form into wolf—until he stood in the clearing, a large ink-black wolf, blending with the night. His wolf allowed the man to remain aware, something that hadn’t happened in a long time, and he turned his attention to the north, where the scent pulled his attention, and the boundary of his territory.
No one should be out here. He’d banished himself to this goddess-forsaken part of his territory when he’d started losing control where he’d hoped to contain the madness until he could find control or a cure. However, now, his land was being invaded. He didn’t want to control the beast who hungered for the blood of those who dared foul the sweet scent. It reminded him of something important, something his wolf desperately wanted though he wasn’t sure why.
He immediately took off toward the sweet maple scent with long loping strides, covering the ground quickly. He was downwind of the intruders, so it was too late before they realized he was there. He slashed and tore his way through them, clawing and ripping at their flesh before they could fight back, not that they were a match for him. He was an Alpha, a supreme killing machine, an apex predator among predators, and these humans and shifters couldn’t hope to win against him.
Within moments, the carnage was over and all lay dead around him, except for a sack laying in the center, unmoving. The caramel, rum, and maple scents were stronger there, and he changed back to human, gasping at the transformation. Even for him, two quick changes in a short period sapped his energy, but something told him it was important that he be human for this.
Suddenly, the bag moved, and he stepped back, an involuntary snarl coming from his throat, the wolf still holding him in his grasp. He nudged the bag with his foot, and the wiggling continued, with the top of it changing shape, morphing as if something was trying to push out of it. A hand wedged its way out, then another, opening the drawstring at the top. All at once, the bag was pushed down around the naked shape of a woman.
She sat up, spat out a dirty rag, and blinked rapidly in the dim lighting of the forest. She took in the dead bodies and his naked form, and said, “Well, fuck. This can’t be good.”
Sabrina Silvers began her writing career dreaming of elves, orcs, and hobbits in the fantasy section of her local library, looking in wardrobes for Narnia and Aslan, and hunting for gnomes in the forest. To her dismay, she never found any of them except between the pages of her books. So, she had to go out and create them for herself, leading to her lifelong love of reading and writing and dreaming about adventures, fantasy creatures and love in fantasy lands! She divides her time between writing sexy contemporary romances under a different pen name, reading, knitting and being owned by a very spoiled cocker spaniel who does not share her love of fantasy creatures.