Lured (The Brazil Werewolf Series Book 4)

BOOK: Lured (The Brazil Werewolf Series Book 4)
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Lured

The Brazil Werewolf Series

Amanda K. Dudley-Penn

Acknowledgments

              There are many people that I want to thank.  First, I would like to thank my husband, David Wayne Penn.  I know that it’s hard to be married to an author but you’re proud of me through it all.  You don’t understand how much that means to me.  I would also like to thank my eldest daughter, Constance Desiree Dudley.  I wouldn’t be able to do everything that I do if it wasn’t for you.  Thank you for helping me and thank you for being Aurora on the original covers of Beckoned and Summoned.  Also, I would like to thank my baby girl, Isabella Kaylee Penn.  You are always so supportive and push me to finish and of course, I want to thank my son, Joshua Lee James Penn.  You show me the little things.  You make me appreciate them.   I would also like to thank my mother, Melinda Kaye Hirjak for making it a requirement for us to read.  You gave me an imagination.  Thank you.  I would also like to thank my step-father, Paul Hirjak.  You chose to love us and you have no idea how much that means.  I would like to thank my father, Eric Ray Dudley for teaching me what strength is.  I would also like to thank my other daddy.  I haven’t seen you in a while but you helped raise me.  I love you, James.  I would also like to thank my brother, James Alan Matthews, who was my first friend.  You truly are the best storyteller.  I would like to thank my brother, Joshua Cole Edward Matthews.  Thank you for being the adventurous person you always were.  I miss you so much.  Also, I would like to thank my sister, Kara who has always been there for me.  We have been through so much together.  You are my best friend…Always.  Thank you for modeling for me and taking pictures.  I would like to thank my sister, Sandra.  You may not share my blood but I am convinced that you should have.  You have always supported me and helped me.  You are my sister always.  I would also like to thank my sister, Amber.  You have always been there for me even when others didn’t want you to be.  I am grateful and I love you so much.  I would also like to thank my brother, Michael.  I love you no matter what.  Also, I would like to thank my sister-in-law, Roxanna Steele Matthews.  I hear about it when you show people my work.  I appreciate and love you so much.  I would also like to thank my sister-in-law, Corie Green Matthews.  You have given me some beautiful memories and continue to support me even though I have been difficult sometimes.  Thank you.  I would also like to thank my model, photographer and awesome brother-in-law, Robbie Pressley.  You are truly amazing.  I am blessed to have you in my life.  My sister did well choosing you.  I would also like to thank my aunts, Amy Russell, Vickie Edwards, Becky Dudley, Brenda Rollins and Connie Dudley-Sekulich for showing such interest in my work and of course, I would like to thank my great aunt is the absolute greatest, Peggy Russell-Englant.  I would like to thank my uncles Jason Russell and Terry Russell for always being supportive.  I would like to thank my cousins Christopher Russell, Rebecca Grieshaber, Michelle Baltimore, Traci Weddington Coble, Catareena and Emily Taber, Buffy Russell and Valerie Russell who are have been so supportive.  I would also like to thank my grandparents, Mildred Hardy and Charles Russell for being so supportive.  I would also like to thank my sister and brother-in-law of the soul, Hopi and Alvin Craig and the Lalibete family for always wanting what is best for me and rooting for me.  I would like to thank my other I sisters of the soul, Chrystal Ambrose, Connie Sanchez and Jennifer Willis.  I will always love you.  I want to give a special thanks to my brother of the soul, Robert Sanders who supports me in whatever I do.  Also, a big, BIG shout-out to my sister of the soul and fellow author, Nicole Donovan a.k.a. Nicolette Scarletti.  You have been so awesome.  I love you!  I would also like to thank my friend and fellow author, Lila Felix.  You have encouraged so much.  Thank you. I also want to thank my children’s teachers especially the sweet teachers and aides who take care of my son, Josh, Mrs. Cathy Terry, Mrs. Rebecca Teman, Mrs. Perez, Mr. Dantic, Mr. Thomas and Sam.  Thank you so much.  You mean the world to me. I want to take this time to say the most special thanks to a beautiful little boy name, Garrett “Baby Max” Redwine for blessing us with his presence for less than three years.  Thank you for fighting and thank you for each smile and I want to thank his mother, Terri Redwine for sharing him with us.  I love each and every one of you.  Thank you so much.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dedications

I dedicate this book with so much love and affection to memory of my grandfather, Harvey Ray Dudley.  You were always my hero and you always will be.  I love you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prologue

              Silence.  It’s something other people find release in.  The quiet allows them to breathe and relax.  My response is different.  Silence causes my breath to quicken and sweat to coat my skin.  It brings fear and a warning that something approaches…Something that brings death.   

I realize that my fear is because of what happened when I was eight years old.  Though young, I noticed even then how the air was thick and still with that cursed silence giving us a distorted sense of peace.  I often wonder why my parents nor I realized the danger.  Instead, we allowed the unusual quiet to subdue us as we succumbed to rest.

              My sister, Jaelle had fallen asleep on the couch that night.  She slept there often because it was beneath the window and she loved to watch the trees sway.  We never thought of the danger she could be in because we lived in such a close space in a motor home no bigger than a bus.  Besides, I slept three feet away in a bunk bed and though a mere five years older than her, I was protective of my little sister. 

              The howl of a wolf broke the silence and the peace that came with it, causing me to sit up in bed confused.  At first, I didn’t sense the danger.  We were werewolves and regular wolves wouldn’t hurt us.  Also, it was rare to meet other werewolves near the Alabama/Tennessee line where we lived.  What alerted me to the danger was the scent.  It was unfamiliar and mixed with the aroma of human blood.   

              I blinked in surprise as the door opened to my parent’s room.  My mother’s eyes met mine in the dark but I saw the concern within them. My father peered at me over her shoulder with worry creasing his brow.

              “Get Jaelle,” my mother said, in a soft voice laced with fear, “Someone is here.  Someone bad.  Get her and hide.”

              I nodded as I stood and stepped toward my sister.  She sat up, peering at me in the darkness.  Her grey eyes were wide as her lip trembled in fear.

              “Nadia, what’s wrong?” She asked in a whisper. 

              I stepped even closer to her and opened my mouth to answer but before I uttered one word, the window burst above her head.  She screamed as I ran toward her and grabbed her hand trying to pull her away.  A powerful tug pulled me toward the window almost causing me to release her. I realized that the beast had grabbed her but I tightened my grip, refusing to let go.  I met its silver eyes determined to save my sister as my mother and father broke into howls as they transitioned behind me. 

              The beast growled low in its throat and I lifted my chin trying not to show my fear.  A moment later, it raised a hand-tipped with razor sharp claws and swiped downward.  I saw it coming and twisted my body but it connected, slicing me from shoulder to lower back.  I screamed as it gave one final jerk.  Jaelle slipped from my hands as I gazed into her terrified face.  I sank to the floor as the silence returned even thicker than before and darkness surrounded me taking away any hope that I could save her. 

              We never found Jaelle but my parents and I knew that she died at three years old.  The only thing we discovered was a bloody nightgown.  Later, I would find out who killed her as I listened to my parents talk while I laid in the bed trying to heal from the gashing red wounds that the werewolf had given me.  My father had said their names…The Grey werewolves.  Though one of them had done the deed, my father blamed himself for Jaelle’s death because Jaelle had died because my father helped a woman named Fiona escape them with her child…from a man who had stalked her.  A man named Emilian.  His name remained etched into my mind from that moment on.  When I realized he lived in my birth place of Timbly Mountain, Colorado, I smiled because on my eighteenth birthday, I would return there to meet the man I was going to marry.  When I did, I would seek revenge against the Grey wolves for what they had done to my sister.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter One
Meetings

Ten Years Later

                            I stared out of the window as the night fell on my eighteenth birthday.  I couldn’t quite believe the years had passed fast as they did as I gazed at my father’s movements as he walked from place to place outside folding up lawn chairs I had often sat in during my eighteen years.  Memories of listening to my father sing or play the guitar flooded my mind.  In some of them, Jaelle would be there.  In others, I would be alone with my parents and with the more recent memories, I would listen with my little brother, Pesha, who had blessed us with his birth four years before.

              I glanced toward him.  His hair fell in a riotous assembly of loose waves.  The strands curled at the end around his face making his green eyes huge and curious at all times.  He sat on the recliner with his black teddy bear, Shadow, speaking to him as if he spoke to a person.  He glanced up at me and smiled causing my heart to lurch in my chest.  Soon, I would have to say good-bye to him.  My parents would leave with him.  It hurt to think about. 

              My mother’s voice reached me as she sang in the kitchen.  I turned toward her as a gasp escaped from between my lips.  Sometimes, it surprised me how beautiful my mother was.  She wore her long auburn hair, the exact shade as my own, pulled back into a ponytail.  She smiled and I found that I had inherited her bowed lips.  Still, as much as we resembled, we appeared different too.  She was curvy where I was thin.  Her face was rounder than mine and though I had the same shade of grey eyes as she did, hers held every emotion she’d ever experienced, where I hid mine as often as possible.

              My father returned and I turned my gaze to him, trying to commit his image to my memory.  He was tall and covered in lean muscle.  He possessed hair black in color and retained the same riotous waves as Pesha.  His eyes were sea green and always possessed a seriousness about them that made most people immediately comfortable with him.  His smile was wide and infectious and when it widened, dimples appeared in both cheeks and his chin.

              I took a shaky breath and turned to the window where Jaelle had been taken from us.  I placed my hand on the cool glass as my memory conjured up her face.  I winced as I saw her terrified expression as she was ripped away from us.  I blinked and a tear fell down my cheek because I was saying good-bye to her too. Once I got my revenge against the one who had killed her, I suspected that her memory would fade and blur.  She would slip from me little by little until I could only recall her in pictures. 

              “We’ll be ready to leave for Timbly Mountain tomorrow,” My father said interrupting my thoughts and I sensed my parent’s gazes on me.  I turned toward them realizing that they waited for me to protest.  I suppose that it was odd that I didn’t but I would not speak one word against it.

              “Are you ready to leave then?” My mother asked, frowning as she peered into my face. 

              I raised my chin, “I will be,” I said, softly. 

              My mother’s gaze continued to roam over my face and then, she nodded.  I turned back to the window and I realized that it bothered my parents on some level that I didn’t fight.  I suppose I should have been angry or mad at them but I didn’t worry about that.  Instead, my focus remained on Jaelle and receiving justice for her death.

**********

              I was asleep when we left the town where I had grown up.  Though I had said my good-byes to my childhood home long before I laid down in bed, I couldn’t help the melancholy that washed over me when I glanced out of the window upon rising.  Trepidation I hadn’t experienced before sank into my soul as the strangeness of waking in a new town plagued me.  For the first time, I realized that not only would my parents and Pesha leave but everything would be different.  Fear of the unknown shook me in a way hard to ignore.

When we moved over the Colorado state line, my heart pounded as thoughts I had not entertained before crossed my mind.  For the first time, I wondered who my betrothed was.   All I had was his name…Tamas Brazil.  I knew nothing else about him.  He was a complete stranger and that terrified me.  Hours passed as the panic built.  I looked out of the window searching for signs that mentioned Timbly Mountain.  Darkness had fallen when I found one announcing that we were less than fifty miles away.  A tremble worked through me from my head to my feet.

              “Nadia,” my mother whispered as she sat next to me.  I sensed her eyes on me as she studied my face, “Are you alright?”

I nodded as I tried to calm my features before I turned to her but when I did she raised her eyebrows and smiled, “Breathe,” she said and I released the breath I hadn’t realized I’d been holding, “Tamas is going to love you and you him.”

              “You don’t know that,” I said, swallowing over the tears that threatened to come.

              “I’ve witnessed many betrothals between werewolves like us and none of them have failed,” she said and grinned, “Besides, Sophia seems gifted when it comes to love matching.”

              “Who is Sophia?” I asked, grasping onto her name. 

              “She’s Tamas’ mother,” my mother said, smiling with a fondness that warmed her face, “She approached me about matching you with Tamas when you were a few months old.”

              I frowned, “Why me?” I asked, curious. 

              My mother smiled, “That’s something you should ask her.”

              I nodded and released a breath as I glanced outside and swallowed hard, “We’re almost there.”

              My mother nodded, “We are,” she said, “But we will be with you.  Don’t be afraid. Everything will be alright.  I promise.”

              I met her eyes trying to believe her.  She reached to touch my cheek but we were suddenly thrown forward with such force that we ended up on the floor in front of the couch.  The sound of screeching tires reached my ears as I glanced up at my mother.  Pesha’s terrified cries rent the air as my eyes widened and I scrambled toward him before pulling him toward me and cradling him protectively against my chest.  He held onto me desperate for protection as my mother stood. 

              My father stepped into the living area after locking the doors.  His eyes were dark as he glanced at me. 

              “What is it?” My mother asked, terrified. 

              “It’s a werewolf but I have no idea who it is,” he said glancing at me, “We need to find out.”

              My mother nodded as she faced me with wide eyes, “Lock the door behind us,” she said, glancing toward her bedroom, “If you need to get away, you know how.”

              “The hatch in your room but you both don’t have to go,” I said, standing with Pesha still in my arms as desperation swept through me, “You can’t leave us alone.”

              Tears rested in my mother’s eyes, “And I can’t leave your father alone either,” she said blinking to allow a tear to fall down her cheek, “There is a better chance that the two of you will survive if we are both out there fighting to ensure it.”             

              “Momma,” I whispered, pleading.

              “Please don’t fight me on this, Nadia,” she said before stepping forward and kissing Pesha on the forehead, “Take care of him and yourself.”

              I nodded as my father stepped forward.  His green eyes were dark with worry, “I love you, Nadia,” he said before glancing down at his son, “Don’t forget that and if anything happens, tell him.”

              “I love you too, Daddy,” I cried as he kissed my forehead and then, Pesha’s before turning and walking away with my mother behind him.  They stepped out and I locked the door, before backing toward their bedroom turning off the lights on my way. 

              I was nearly to the door of my parent’s room when I heard the lock turn in the outside door.  The hair on the back of my neck rose as the door opened.  My eyes widened as I realized that there was no time to save myself but maybe I could save Pesha.  I pushed him into the bathroom on my right putting my finger to my lips to quiet him and then, closed the door, hoping no one would find him.

              I turned to face the shadow that had stopped just inside the living area.  His eyes glowed within the darkness and his scent reached me as I backed away. 

              “Nadia,” he said closing the distance between us.  My eyes widened as he reached for me.  I couldn’t let him take me without a fight.

              I raised my knee but he was too quick and blocked me with a raise of his leg but he couldn’t block the uppercut to his jaw.  I turned and ran through my parent’s door but he tackled me and I fell on the bed with him on top.

              “Stop fighting!” He said but instead, I raised my forehead, slamming it into his mouth. 

              He grabbed my arms and clasped them with one hand above my head.  His eyes glittered dangerously.  Blood dripped from the corner of his mouth and he licked it before he grinned. 

              “You’re a little hellcat, aren’t you?” He asked and then, laughed, “Most of the time, that’s bad for a wolf.”

              “Let me go!” I screamed in his face. 

              He shook his head, “Not until I tell you who I am,” he said with a raised brow, “I think it would be stupid to let you go before then.”

              I studied his face and was shocked to find the most handsome man I had ever seen not that I’d seen many.  My parents tended to keep me away from men.  Still, I was sure that he would be able to model for a magazine or walk the runways in Paris with his strong, square jaw and full, pouty lips.  His hair was perfect and combed back from his face in gold, black and brown strands but his eyes were the most breathtaking.  They were emerald green with striations of white interwoven within the irises. 

              “Who are you?” I asked and even I detected the wonder within my voice instead of the anger that I had shown only moments before. 

              He moved closer, “I’m Tamas Brazil,” he said an inch from my face, “Your betrothed.”

              My mouth opened in surprise as he released me to stand, “My betrothed?” I asked in shock. 

              “Yes, your betrothed,” he said with a grin, “And it’s been so nice to meet you.” 

              The amusement dripped from his voice as he said each word.  Then, he rubbed his jaw where I hit him before he left the room.  Immediately, I buried my face in my hands mortified. 

 

BOOK: Lured (The Brazil Werewolf Series Book 4)
3.77Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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