Read Blind Hearts and Silenced Passion Online

Authors: Anya Byrne

Tags: #anal sex, #erotic, #erotic romance, #explicit adult content, #gay, #MM

Blind Hearts and Silenced Passion

Blind Hearts and Silenced Passion

Alpha Gathering 2

 

Copyright 2015 Anya Byrne

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

All Romance Edition August 2015

All Romance Edition, License Notes

 

This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This
ebook remains the copyrighted property of the author and may not be re-sold or
given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another
person, please forward them a link to buy their own copy, or use the gift
function available on your All Romance account. Thank you for respecting the
hard work and livelihood of this author.

 

 

This book is a work of fiction, not to be confused with fact,
advice or suggestion. The characters are products of the author’s imagination. Any
resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons is purely coincidental. Cover
art is for illustration purposes only.

 

Blurb:

 

Baqir is a silencer.
He has sacrificed more than he'd have liked for the safety of his brother, the
one person he has left in the world. Now, he has to face a conspiracy that has
shaken his entire way of life. People are inexplicably dying all around him,
and he is helpless to stop it.

And then, his path
crosses that of Remy Fitzroy. Remy is beautiful, stubborn and determined to
help solve the mystery. He is also fragile, vulnerable, and at the same time,
stronger than any person Baqir has ever met.

Baqir doesn't
deserve him—doesn't deserve his own mate.

The best course of
action seems simple—leave and give Remy the chance to find a different love,
one who can offer him the life Baqir never can. But Baqir isn't just an
assassin anymore. He cannot silence his emotions.

Can the unlikely
couple find their way out of the labyrinth of secrets and uncertainties? What
answers will they find at the end of their shared path?

 

Warning: Gay erotic romance. The material in this
document contains explicit sexual content that is intended for mature audiences
only. All characters involved are adults capable of consent, are over the age
of twenty-one, and are willing participants.

 

38,183 words

 

 

Blind Hearts and Silenced Passion

Alpha Gathering 2

 

Anya Byrne

Copyright 2015

 

 

 

 

 

Prologue

Baqir slid through the greenery, a shadow taking refuge in
the well-known forest, carefully staying downwind to avoid detection. He was
supposed to be hunting, to get food for both himself and his injured little
brother, but something had called him back. He didn't know why and what told
him his family was in danger, but the sense of it was there, pulsing through
his blood, stronger than even his survival instincts.

He and his small family had been taking refuge in a cave that
had once belonged to a bear. While quite large, it wasn't noticeable unless you
knew how to look for it, and the scent of its previous inhabitants masked their
werewolf one. But their refuge could not protect them when they were out
hunting.

Baqir never reached the cave. Halfway there, he came to a
halt, frozen at the sight of what was going on in the nearby clearing.

The smell of blood filled the air, coppery and sickening,
making Baqir's stomach roil. It should have been impossible—he was a predator
and quite familiar with it, with death, gore, with fighting for survival. He'd
been raised in the knowledge that every day was a danger, and every second
could be his last one.

That didn't mean he'd been ready for this, not in the
slightest. He was not ready for the realization that he was too late, that his
worst fears had come to pass and the one person who'd been with him his entire
life was dead.

His mother lay in a pool of her own blood, her body still and
motionless as the rigor of death settled in. She was still in wolf form, and
there were several other corpses around her. She had tried to make a stand, to
at least take out as many of her opponents as possible. In the end, it had been
useless, and now, her fight—like her life—was drained out of her.

For all her efforts, there were many other people filling the
clearing. A tall dark-skinned man crouched by her side and caressed her fur
with an expression that was almost melancholic.

"What a pity that it came to this, Aminah. We could have
been great together."

Something angry and ugly stirred inside Baqir's chest. He
didn't have to be a genius to realize the identity of the killer.

His mother had always been honest with them and had told them
their father had been a silencer. She had never outright said the word 'rape',
but both Baqir and Erdi had heard it, and they'd known they hadn't been wanted
children. They had known that many times in the past, their mother had
considered ending them—just like she had considered ending herself.

But she hadn't, and she'd protected them and kept them safe,
in her own way. She'd also warned Baqir that there would likely come a time
when her efforts would not be enough. That day, she had said, she would not
allow herself to be taken again. She would rather die first, even if in some
respects, it was selfish.

When this happened, it would be up to Baqir to protect his
little brother. By werewolf standards, Erdi was still young. He'd been hardened
by their lifestyle, yes, but he was nowhere near as aware of their situation as
Baqir.

He was also still injured, having been almost gutted by a
huge elk just the day before. It hadn't been his fault—he'd actually been
trying to protect Baqir at the time—but they simply hadn't been prepared for
their new environment when they'd come here in a final desperate attempt to
escape their pursuers.

But Baqir couldn't dwell on his regrets. He had his brother
to think about. Maybe, just maybe, he could still salvage something out of this
disaster.

His thoughts came to a grinding halt when the killer got up
and looked around at his men. "Spread out. She has the children stashed
around here somewhere. I want them brought to me, as soon as possible."

In that moment, several possibilities extended in front of
Baqir. He could run. He could somehow find his way back to the cave and try to
make his escape with his brother. No, even with the labyrinthine nature of
their refuge, that would never work. Erdi was in no condition to travel. He
needed at least one more day to heal and rest, plus a good meal, which they
hadn't eaten in a long time. They would be caught.

Baqir could also run by himself. He was confident that he
could elude them, and that perhaps, he'd be more successful on his own than
with his mother. As much as he had cared about her, he'd long ago admitted to
himself that she was too recognizable for them to ever be safe. Their father's
obsession had mostly been fixed on her, so there was a good chance that he
might not pursue Baqir with the same determination.

He did neither of these things. Instead, he shifted into his
human form and stepped into the clearing, straightening his back and not
flinching in the slightest as the men turned silver weapons on him. "You
don't have to look for me," he said. "I'm right here."

His father had the gall to look surprised. "Well, this
is interesting. I expected you to try to escape me."

Baqir arched a brow and gave the man a cool look, pushing his
fury to the back of his mind. "And why would I? My legacy is with you,
isn't it?"

"And yet, you've stayed with your mother all this
time."

Baqir shrugged. "She served her purpose. I was a child,
and I couldn't exactly become what I was meant to be without her."

"I suppose you might be right," his father mused.
"I don't have time to babysit pups." His lips twisted into a smirk.
"But you aren't a pup, are you? In fact, you remind me of myself when I
was your age."

Baqir tasted bile, since the last thing he wanted was to be
anything like this man. But he knew that he had no other choice, not if he
wanted to survive and to keep Erdi safe. "I can't say that's exactly
surprising, now is it?"

"Indeed not," the silencer said. "What's your
name, pup?"

"Baqir," he replied without missing a beat.

"Baqir." His father said the word as if tasting it
on his tongue. "I like it. It's a strong name. Tell me, Baqir, where's
your brother?"

"Dead," Baqir answered. "He was badly injured
in a fight with a herd of elks. He didn't make it."

Baqir didn't know if the man believed him, but he seemed
happy enough to accept the answer. "That's a pity, but ah well. I think
we've accomplished quite enough today." He wrapped an arm around Baqir's
shoulders and grinned. "Let's go now, pup. The others will clean things up
here while we get to know one another."

Baqir let his father lead him away, mentally praying that the
silencer would not find his injured brother. He reminded himself that he needed
to accept the proximity of his mother's killer, at least for now, and pretend
that he wanted to be here, even if his wolf roared at him to tear the man's
throat out.

All in good time. He would watch and wait, and strike at the
best moment, when his enemy didn't expect it. For the moment, he'd have to be
careful between making sure Erdi survived, and so did his cover—but in the long
run, it would be worth it.

After all, revenge was a dish best served cold, and when this
man, when his mother's killer was dying at his feet, he wouldn't even know what
hit him. Even if Baqir had to give up his sense of self, he would avenge his
mother, and he'd keep his brother safe.

Chapter One

"So there's still no news?" Alpha Sasha Maximoff
released an angry huff, and Argent rubbed his arm in an obvious show of
affection. Some of the tension drained out of the Alpha's shoulders, although
his gaze was just as dark and stormy. "How is that possible?"

Baqir studiously did not look at the Alpha's so very pregnant
mate and instead focused on the man he'd come here to talk to. "They've
received some pretty hard blows recently, but that doesn't mean anything."

Sasha let out a hard breath as if trying to brace himself for
something hard and painful. "The people we came into contact with were
just tools. They didn't mean anything for the bigger picture."

"Quite." Which was alarming, given the fact that
the attacks had so far taken place in very different areas, and yet, seemed
quite organized. The human conspirators always came out of nowhere and struck
without warning—much like silencers really. Baqir had to admit that to a
certain extent he was getting frustrated—or would have been, if not for his
increasing concern. "All evidence points to a larger organization that
coordinates this, and I believe I don't have to point out how bad that
is."

"An organization that decided it was a good idea to
kidnap the grandchild of the Sidhe queen." Alpha Maximoff smiled bitterly.
"Yes, I'd say that's bad news."

"I have some leads, but... I won't be able to come in
for some time now, while I investigate them," Baqir replied. He looked at
Argent, then back at Sasha. "Be careful, Alpha. This place isn't safe, not
for you, and definitely not for a pregnant mate or a new pup."

"We know, Baqir," Argent answered quietly but
sternly. "Thank you for your concern."

The Alpha twitched, and Argent's hold on him tightened. Baqir
suspected he'd accidentally hit a sore spot. He wouldn't be surprised if the
Alpha had been trying to get his mate to take refuge with the Lone Wolf Pack.
If he'd been the one blessed with a mate, it was what he'd have done.

Thankfully, the only person he had left—his brother—was safe,
which allowed Baqir to track down the people who were after Erdi, and who had
in a way, forced them apart. "As you will," he said. "If there's
nothing else, perhaps we should end this meeting."

Argent laughed lightly. "I doubt we were followed. Sasha
and I made it clear we were not to be disturbed."

That almost drew a smile out of Baqir. He was fond of Argent,
since the man reminded him a little of a young Erdi. He supposed a small part
of him was resentful that Argent had actually managed to live in a pack, unlike
Baqir and Erdi—but that was not Argent's fault. Seeing the child of two
silencers find happiness was both heartening and a bitter pill to swallow.
Baqir wished the idea of putting Erdi up for adoption had occurred to him,
instead the actual choice he'd made, to eventually include Erdi into the
silencer guild he had controlled.

Either way, Baqir appreciated the fact that Alpha Maximoff
had agreed to meet here, in the middle of nowhere. The cold Siberian wind might
be biting sharply at their cheeks, but it would also bring the scent of any
intruders.

"To be honest," he admitted, "this is largely
why I came, to warn you. Don't trust anyone but your mate, Alpha. There's too
much at stake here."

Sasha looked conflicted, but nodded. "And you? What will
you do? Who can you trust?"

Baqir almost laughed. "I'm a silencer, Alpha. I don't
need to trust people. I know exactly where I stand with them."

That was probably a little too optimistic—or rather, too
bitter—but the Alpha didn't call him out on it. "You take care as well,
Baqir. Should you need anything..."

"I know. Thank you."

With that brief goodbye, Baqir left the Alpha and his mate
and headed back into the forest. He doubted he would call on them, for the
exact reason why he'd come here to warn them. At first he'd planned to ask for
some support from the Gathering, but after learning that the former Maximoff
Alpha had been mysteriously killed under his own roof, he'd been uncomfortable
with the idea of revealing too much of his findings. There were spies
everywhere.

There was one thing Baqir had sworn would never happen. He'd
sworn to never again be prey, to hunt down and take out those who'd threatened
him and his brother. It might not be as easy as before now that his guild had
disbanded, but he was also free to be Baqir again, without carrying the mantle
of a Malik.

Not for the first time, he wondered how many of the people
he'd been leading for years he'd have to kill by the time this was over. Some
of them had still offered their support, but many others had disappeared, and
Baqir hadn't been able or had the time to track them all down. Shaking his
head, he made his way through the forest and almost wished he cared more.

For one lone instant, he wished for a time when two young
wolves had run together in the shade of different trees, mindless of the peril
haunting their steps. The thought vanished, buried at the back of his mind, and
he hardened his heart again, once more in mission mode.

He had a job to do, and moon help him, he would do it—no
matter what he had to sacrifice.

****

"You can't protect me forever, Laurent." Remy
gestured wildly with the hand not holding a cellphone, drawing the suspicious
eye of the old lady in the aisle across from him. He lowered his voice and took
a deep breath, struggling to calm down. "I'm not a baby."

"I know that," Laurent said at the other side of
the connection. "But can you blame me for trying to keep you safe?"

"You said you wanted me to look into this and you're
blocking me every step of the way." Remy squeezed the phone so tightly its
casing creaked. "Look, I can't do this right now. I'll call you later,
okay?"

"Don't you dare hang—"

Remy pressed the "end call" icon with more
satisfaction than such a simple gesture warranted. In truth, he missed the
times when he could snap cellphones closed or slam receivers down. Sure, a lot
of devices had been the victim of the arguments between him and Laurent, but it
was far more satisfying than these flimsy touch screen things. Nonetheless,
this would have to do. His brother could never get over the fact that Remy
ranted and raved at him, completely disrespecting his authority as an Alpha,
and as such managing to be among the few people not intimidated by one of the
most powerful werewolves in France. Remy scoffed under his breath. He was
trying so hard to track down the scattered remnants of Florent's silencer
guild, and his brother was keeping him from his task. Furthermore, the only
help and real lead he had, Blanchefleur, had decided to scamper off to do her
own investigating. This was not why he'd agreed to leave Russia and come back
here.

With a huff, Remy skimmed the shelves and selected one of his
favorite brands of tea. He liked this place because it catered to the more
unusual crowd as well, and manufactured some blends that actually worked on
werewolves too. That was no coincidence of course—the owner of the shop was a
werewolf just like Remy and he knew exactly just what kind of products his
people needed. Sometimes, in darker moments, Remy asked himself just how
Reynard had come to know so much about how certain herbs affected werewolves,
but he preferred to put it out of his mind. Reynard had been a good friend to
him for years. No sense prodding into something that was none of his business.

He waited until they were alone in the shop, and then
approached the counter with his purchase. Reynard arched a brow at him.
"Sorry. Couldn't help but hear. Are you sure you don't want anything
stronger?"

Remy laughed. "Maybe, but I shouldn't. I'm supposed to
be doing something important."

Reynard hummed under his breath. "Fair enough, but I'll
pack it in just in case." He wrapped up Remy's purchase together with an
unmarked bag that made Remy snort.

"You know, one day you'll get into trouble for
that."

It was Reynard's turn to laugh. "Oh, Remy, the day I'm
afraid of a human drug bust is when I'll pack up my things, turn into a wolf
and permanently move into the darkest forest I can find. But you and I both
know that's not going to happen anytime soon."

"Yes, I know." Remy flicked Reynard's forehead.
"No self-preservation at all."

He was only teasing—he actually knew Reynard was very careful
and well known among the werewolves of Paris for the aid he gave the community.
If anything ever did happen, Remy would make Laurent step in. But Remy very
much doubted that would ever be necessary. The products that were illegal for
human consumption were actually popular among werewolves, as Reynard was among
the few people who could get one of them drunk without putting them at risk. He
was safe, if only because of his popularity.

Reynard's full lips twisted into a smirk, as if guessing what
Remy was thinking. "You know, if your brother gives you trouble, there's
always a couch at my place—or a double bed we can share."

He wiggled his brows, and Remy felt his face flame.
"Would you stop? One of these days, I'm going to think you're
serious."

The man had been flirting with him for years, but they both
knew it was just a game. He and Reynard went way back, to a darker time of
Remy's life when he'd been actively self-destructive, poisoning himself with
things that were actually bad for him. Reynard had stepped in, and his strange
concoctions had helped Remy through grief, despair and depression. Sometimes,
when Remy felt particularly mischievous, he flirted back, and he'd even managed
to get Reynard flustered once or twice.

Of course, that wouldn't happen today. Remy wasn't really in
the mood for something like that, although to be fair, his chat with Reynard
had already improved his spirits.

Reynard's expression sobered and he briefly squeezed Remy's
hand. "Do be careful, will you, Remy?"

Remy nodded, hearing what Reynard wasn't saying. He would not
fall back onto his previous addictions. He would not do that to Reynard, or to
his brother—no matter how much he and Laurent butted heads these days. "I
will. I promise. You know I'm past that."

"I do." Reynard chuckled lightly. "I guess
maybe I'm not so different from your brother. I can't help but worry."

Remy just shook his head at Reynard's antics. "Anyway, I
should be off. Thanks for this. How much do I owe you?"

Reynard waved a hand. "Don't worry about it. Free of
charge for a friend."

Remy didn't bother arguing. He just left a couple of bills on
the counter and turned away before Reynard could try to reimburse him.
Reynard's spluttering followed him out the door, and he smiled slightly as he
turned to walk away from the tea shop.

He never got the chance to take a single step. A strange
feeling exploded over him, hot and sudden, burning bright, making his head
spin. It reminded him a little of the time Blanchefleur had blinded him,
damaging his eyes so badly it had taken him years to start seeing again and
decades to actually distinguish colors. To this day, he still wore glasses, not
completely healed despite the passage of time. But this was different, to the
point where he irrationally suspected the feeling would never truly fade.

A random human ran into him and even if normally, he would
have barely felt it, the slight shove was enough to make him lose his balance.
He would have undoubtedly fallen, but instead, he landed against a strong,
muscled chest. Warm arms wrapped around him, and despite still being in the
middle of the street, Remy suddenly felt he was in a world of his own.

Remy's nostrils were invaded by an unfamiliar scent that
could only belong to a single person on the entire planet. Dark eyes fixed on
his face, and he trembled, not daring to breathe lest he shatter the moment and
realize it might all be a dream.

A husky voice sounded in his ear, finally snapping him out of
his trance. "Are you all right?"

Remy's face flamed, and he realized he might have embarrassed
himself quite badly. Even if he wanted nothing more than to stay in the warm
embrace, he had to be rational about this and admit even to himself that...
Well, the man in front of him was a stranger. He might have just made the worst
possible first impression.

He broke away from the hug and removed his glasses, wiping
them on his shirt in a nervous gesture he'd thought he'd mostly gotten rid of.
"I'm fine," he managed to reply. "Just... lost my balance there
for a minute."

The man nodded, and then, much to Remy's surprise, crouched
at his feet. All sorts of inappropriate imagery sprouted in Remy's mind, but as
it turned out, the gesture was completely innocent. "You dropped
this," his mate—oh, moon be blessed, he had a mate—said as he got up.

Remy stared at the package that was being offered to him and
realized that, indeed, he'd lost his recent purchases, the bag with the tea
from Reynard's shop.

Their fingers brushed lightly as he automatically reached for
it, and he couldn't suppress a slight shudder. A spark of something reckless
and beautiful ignited inside him, and he smiled at the other man—no, the other
werewolf, his mate. "Could I perhaps interest you in a cup of tea at my
place?"

For a few moments, no reply came. His mate watched him with
those unfathomable dark eyes, and Remy wondered if he'd somehow insulted the
man or made a mistake.

His concern was swept aside when his mate smiled, a wide
blinding grin that looked all the more striking against the man's dark skin.
"I thought that under such circumstances, coffee was usually the
suggestion."

Remy gasped in mock outrage. If someone else had said the
words, he might have actually taken offense, but this was his mate—and the
teasing glint in the man's eyes prevented any negative emotion.

"I think we'd have to introduce each other before we
progress to coffee."

Other books

Highland Magic by K. E. Saxon
The Fate of Mice by Susan Palwick
The Book of Love by Lynn Weingarten
Dead is the New Black by Christine DeMaio-Rice
Night Game by Alison Gordon
Organ Music by Margaret Mahy
Zodiac by Romina Russell