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Authors: Zenina Masters

Tags: #Adult, #Erotic Romance, #Fantasy, #Fey, #Magic, #Paranormal, #Shapeshifter

Hawking a Future

BOOK: Hawking a Future
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Two beasts that won’t show their faces in one body built entirely of curves, Hayley is ambushed to the Crossroads where she meets the elf she never dreamed of.

 

 

Being a shifter that doesn’t shift has left Hayley living a nice, normal human life. Her parents dumped her into the human system where she used her senses to keep herself safe, and it wasn’t until she was a teen that the full scope of her genetics was explained to her.

Hijacked to the Crossroads, Hayley is bewildered by the shifter traditions and even more so at the elf who won’t leave her side. She tries to explain that she has two beasts that do not come out and play, but when their contact gives her enough energy, one of her animals makes her a liar.

Tovin is a hunter by trade and enthralled with the lush curves of the woman who captured his focus the moment she arrived. Her first beast is a surprise, but it is the second that shocks him. Hayley has two beasts in her body, but is there room for an elf?

 

The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.

 

Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage the electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated.

 

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

 

Hawking a Future

Copyright © 2015 Zenina Masters

ISBN: 978-1-4874-0310-2

Cover art by Carmen Waters

 

All rights reserved. Except for use in any review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in whole or in part in any form by any electronic, mechanical or other means, now known or hereafter invented, is forbidden without the written permission of the publisher.

 

Published by eXtasy Books Inc or

Devine Destinies, an imprint of eXtasy Books Inc

Look for us online at:

www.eXtasybooks.com or www.devinedestinies.com

 

 

 

 

 

Hawking a Future

Shifting Crossroads Book 27

 

 

By

 

 

Zenina Masters

 

Chapter One

 

 

Hayley Hyland kept her face impassive as another survivor told her story. Her senses were pricked for any changes in heart rate or major signs of distress. The counsellor did most of the heavy lifting; she was just here for the panic.

“The last thing I remember was getting into my car outside the grocery store.” The young woman was sitting with her hands flattened to her thighs, her hair straight and her eyes hollow.

She continued her tale of being abducted, imprisoned and abused at the hands of the elves who considered her a fuckable animal.

Hayley focused on the fluttering pulse of the woman next to the speaker. She gave the counsellor a slight nod, and the woman’s eyes flicked in acknowledgement.

The panicking patient slowly breathed more easily, and when the speaker finished, the counsellor called an end to the day’s session.

Hayley moved from her post and headed over to Molly’s side.

“I managed to calm her, but do you know the trigger?”

“The reference to the cuffs and collar. She started to panic when they were mentioned, and it got worse as the abuse was described. She was about to shift, so I let you know.”

“Thanks, Hayley. Do you know what you are going to do after this group completes?”

They began walking through the halls as the group session broke up and the patients left with their attendants.

“I will go back to my day job. My family leave is almost up, so I will either have to go back or find a new place to work.” She shrugged. Hayley had taken every form of leave possible when she was called to monitor the newest survivors of the latest raid on a fey compound. That had turned into three more raids and a total of seventy souls that were on the edge of suicide and who needed constant monitoring for signs of depression and panic. Self-injury was a definite possibility.

“We will dearly miss you. You have been a godsend.” Molly sighed and rubbed the back of her neck.

“The Council asked and I came. The same reason you are here. Your Guild called and you came. I don’t have a magical talent like you do, but I have done what I could.”

“And you and your senses have done very well.”

Hayley smiled and turned to face the briskly stepping being approaching them. Counsellor Dennis had a tense look on his face.

“Hayley, there is someone here to speak with you. You had best get to the offices. We can’t have them roaming around.”

Hayley reached out, squeezed Molly’s hand and headed through the wide and bright halls to the offices.

If there was someone waiting that Dennis didn’t want to mention, it couldn’t be good.

 

Two tall and pale figures waited for her. They were dressed with understated elegance, long trousers, polished shoes and immaculate snow-white shirts covered by the dove-grey trench coats that hung open a discreet amount.

Their pale-green eyes, long white-flax hair and the pointed ears extending out of the silky locks told her that they were the first fey she had ever seen in the flesh.

The office manager smiled in relief. “Here she is. I have cleared the inner boardroom for you. Please make this quick.”

Hayley nodded. “I will try.”

“Hayley Hyland?” The one on the left spoke quietly in chiming tones.

“Yes. Please, come with me.” She gestured and walked with the two fey trailing after her.

Inside the boardroom, she closed the door behind them and gestured for them to have a seat at the long table.

She waited and one of them finally spoke.

“You are Hayley Hyland?”

She nodded. “I am. Who might you be?”

“I am Seer Mijak.” The one on the left pressed his hand to his heart and bowed.

“I am Seer Lencor.” The one on the right repeated the gesture.

“I didn’t think they let the seers out.” Hayley was going over what she knew about the organization of the fey.

The men cocked their heads as one. Though their features were different, their colouring marked them as linked in ways beyond genetics.

Mijak smiled. “They normally do not, but you are a special case. We needed to see you because our images of you are in conflict.”

Lencor nodded. “I see a bird.”

“I see a bat.”

Hayley nodded. “I can see your confusion. I am both and neither. I am an unshifting shifter.”

The pale green eyes blinked in unison.

Mijak said, “We don’t understand.”

She sighed. “Since the Shifter Council sent you here, I will fill you in. My parents were one of the rare matings where there was no bond between them. They fell into lust, had sex and I appeared as a result. I shouldn’t have been possible, but here I am. I host both beasts, but they don’t speak to each other and do not speak to me. I can use their skills for echolocation and reading micro-expressions, but I cannot shift. I have lived with the humans all my life, and since the Council got in touch with me, I come here during my holidays to help shifters in their recovery after they have been rescued from bad situations.”

Lencor leaned forward. “Where do you stand on the fey?”

“I have never stood on a fey.”

Mijak cracked an independent smile. “Would you consider one as a mate?”

“Um. I don’t see why not. But I am heading back to work tomorrow. If I don’t show up, I lose my job. This has been all the time I could arrange.” She quirked a smile. “I really don’t see one turning up in the taxation building during a night shift.”

Mijak leaned in. “So you are amenable?”

“If the right man is the right man, it doesn’t matter what he is. I will either know he’s for me, or I will feel nothing.”

Lencor cocked his head. “Do you have a current lover?”

“No. I feel nothing for any male I have run into to date.”

“Female?”

“Nothing for them either. Not like that. I have plenty of friends of either gender, but nothing sparks.”

Mijak asked, “You have no family to call upon?”

“No. Only the Council and my friends.”

They nodded to each other. Mijak smiled slightly. “That might explain what we have seen.”

“I still don’t understand why you are here.” Hayley drummed her fingers on the table.

Lencor blinked. “Ah. I apologise. We have been seeing you and your beasts in our visions, and you are a mate candidate for one of the fey at the Crossroads.”

“Oh. Well, that is neat and all, but I don’t have any spare time to go and play the dating game. I have to get back to my job.”

Mijak and Lencor had a quiet moment together before Lencor spoke. “Thank you for your honesty. We will notify our people of our findings. Thank you for granting us this interview.”

They stood up and disappeared in a twinkling of light.

Hayley got up and grimaced, batting the sparkles away. “That was weird.”

She left the boardroom and headed to the office and those hanging around the door, muttering, “All clear. They are gone.”

The office manager sighed in relief. “Thanks, Hayley. What did they want?”

Hayley chuckled. “Apparently, they wanted to know if I had a date for Saturday night. I told them I was busy. I finished my last session with Molly. I head out in the morning.”

“I will send your time sheets to the Council. Thanks for your help with this batch.”

Hayley smiled and headed to her room to pack her bags before dinner. It had been one helluva vacation.

 

The next morning, she stood in the transport circle, and she waved goodbye to those who had come to see her off. “It was good to be here. Thanks for inviting me.”

The staff laughed and the patients waved farewell.

Light flowed, and she was lost in a tunnel of bright light, falling head over heels until she landed on her feet.

Her bags dropped at her sides, and she groaned as she stood. She felt like hell. She had never had a transport that violent before.

When her vision cleared of the brightness, she stared at the building around her. The blanks were bleached wood, a zen-style rock garden had been constructed and some tiny bonsais were planted and flourishing under fanatical attention.

She heard her own heartbeat in her ears and watched the strangers approaching her.

A man and a woman came toward her, and they moved with the grace of shifters who spent a lot of time in their beast forms.

The woman with the long white hair came forward and smiled. “Hayley Hyland, welcome to the Crossroads.”

Hayley looked around and noted the golden-skinned fey grinning in the background. She had a thousand things she wanted to say, but what came out was, “What the fuck just happened?”

 

Chapter Two

 

 

The male shifter blinked in surprise. “What do you mean? This is the Crossroads. You are here to meet your mate.”

Hayley ran a hand over her face. “Damn it. I have to be back at work. I am going to lose my job.”

The male receded to a small office station and rifled through documents.

The woman came forward. “Um, this is weird. I am Teal and that’s Tony. We got your details yesterday and were expecting you today. You didn’t agree to come here?”

Hayley sighed. “I did and I didn’t. I agreed that I wouldn’t mind meeting a fey, but I didn’t agree to get my butt here immediately.”

Tony called out, “Aha!”

He came over from a desk and flourished an envelope with a heavy seal on it. “This came with the orders.”

Hayley took the heavy paper and looked at the seal. It was a fern leaf in silver on a blood-red background. She opened the envelope and read the interior document.

 

Dear Ms. Hyland,

Apologies for altering your travel course, but time was of the essence. The best choices for you are already at the Crossroads and recalling them and sending them back would not be easy if we waited until you were ready.

We understand that this is not in keeping with your plans for the future, but we hope that the compensation of a mate will be fair-enough trade for this deception.

Your work situation has been ratified. You have been offered a position with the court during litigation sessions as your skills would be highly effective in that duty. Two years of your standard wages have been transferred into your account to compensate for the change of state.

Thank you for your service to our people, and we hope to speak with you again when you have made your final decision and chosen one of ours for your own.

Seers Mijak and Lencor

 

“Well, that does explain it. The fey put me on a detour.” She looked up and smiled at Teal.

The woman sighed in relief. “So, you
are
here to meet a fey.”

BOOK: Hawking a Future
5.81Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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