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A Queen's Dark Prison

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Blurb

“I'm not sorry to tell you that I prefer another female in my bed,” I informed her.

She didn’t seem very satisfied with that, glaring at me. I just rolled my eyes and walked away, going into the bathroom, quickly undressing, and getting under the warm water, but I wasn’t there for long. I knew the quicker I got some sleep, the quicker I could get back to work.

So I showered at lightning speed before drying off and walking back into the bedroom naked. The cat seemed already to be sleeping, and I quickly got under the covers too. I didn’t care if I pushed her. This was my bed! And I hadn’t invited her, but as soon as I got under the covers, the little fatball lifted her head and then got up so she could lie on my stomach.

“No!” I protested, but there was no stopping her.

She climbed on top of me and started making herself comfortable. She ended up lying down so she could face me, and once again, it looked like she was smiling.

“What can I do to get rid of you?!” I grumbled, but she just lay there, closing her eyes and looking so damn comfortable that I didn’t have the heart to move her.

I fell down on the bed, sighing deeply, before I pushed an arm under my pillow and got comfortable. The little cat started to softly purr, and I was surprised when the sound actually seemed to calm me. Soon, I was fast asleep.

For the first time in a long time, it wasn’t a nightmare that held me trapped. No, I actually dreamt a good dream about my mate. Her, in my arms, naked and still breathing heavily after a good round of mating. Her head was on my chest, and one leg was over mine.

I stroked my hand down the side of her face, and she was looking up at me with those unbelievable eyes. I had never seen anything like it, and my own eyes were yellow. But I had grown up with people around me who shared the same color. Octavia was the last of her kind, and she was all mine.

***

Octavia has become a mere shadow of herself. After enduring relentless abuse, she finds herself ensnared in her wolf form, unable to claw her way back to her humanity. With each passing day, fragments of her former self slip away, swallowed by the ever-encroaching darkness. She views everyone through a lens of suspicion, leaving a trail of lifeless bodies in her wake. Both virtuous and villainous individuals pursue her, each harboring their own agenda. Connor seeks to harness her as a weapon, while her mate longs to cradle her once more in his embrace.

Valerio, consumed by the loss of Octavia, finds a glimmer of clarity in the alliance with Hunter. With renewed focus, he returns to his kingdom, assuming his role as king. Yet, despite this semblance of stability, his heart remains fractured, incomplete without his queen by his side. Desperately, he reaches out to others for aid, knowing he cannot salvage his fractured kingdom alone. But can they rescue Octavia from the clutches of her primal instincts and mend her shattered soul, or is she forever condemned to roam the wild, lost to her own nature?*Book Eleven*

Recommended to first read: A Bite From An Alpha King, A Beta's Undying Love, A Second Chance Mate, A Luna's Broken Heart, An Alpha's Choice, An Alpha's Dark Secret, A Luna's Power, An Alpha's Favor, A Beta's Half-Blood and A Spiritual's Mark

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Chapter 1: The Plan
Note: This series is a darker werewolf series not following the usual "plot" of fated mates. Be aware of darker elements such a described violence, k*dnapping, s****l abuse, and death. *Also just to make sure you guys won't be confused. Whenever I write about a dream or a memory, I write in present tense and italic, but whenever it is in past tense, is it something that happens "now". And while this book centers around Octavia and Valerio, you will also read from our other stars' perspective.* -Octavia- It was so dark. I couldn’t see … all I knew was pain. It was everywhere, crawling through my body, like I had animals living under my skin, picking at my flesh, tearing it apart slowly. My mind didn’t feel like mine anymore. It was like I was living in someone else’s body. I couldn’t see, often only got a glimpse of someone torn apart or being torn apart. I would hear their screams, and they would remind me of my own. It would remind me of the time I was kept in chains and inflicted so much pain, I couldn’t take it … I just wanted it to go away … It needed to go away … I didn’t know what happened though. For a moment, it was like the pain went away completely, but I no longer felt like myself. It was like I had gone to sleep, only to wake up to a nightmare, but I couldn’t pinch myself or force myself out of it. I was trapped once again, unable to do anything. I wasn’t myself … I knew somehow, I wasn’t myself, but I didn’t know how to find myself again. I wasn’t even sure where I was. I was just trying to survive the pain. Valerio … Where was he? Where was my mate? I needed Valerio. I needed his arms around me, and his strong body keeping me safe and warming me. I was just so cold all the time now. It felt like I was back to living in the woods again. Always on alert. Always running, but why? Why was I back there? Where was I even? I couldn’t understand anything. I was so confused, trapped in this darkness. I constantly had the taste of blood in my mouth, unable to tell where it came from. Why did I have blood in my mouth? Why did I crave more? I didn’t want to feel like this. It was like I had gone back to the past, when my father taught me all of these things. To like to watch people suffer. To like to watch blood flow. Valerio had taught me a different way though. His love had taught me it was okay to let down my guard and accept the warmth he could bring me. I wanted him … But I couldn’t find him. I tried calling out to him, but I was trapped. I couldn’t hear his voice or anyone else’s. I was completely alone again. I hated the loneliness. Once I liked it, thinking it was my only friend. Now I hated it. I hated it so much, and I just wanted to go away, but I couldn’t find my mate. I couldn’t find my friends. Where was I? It was the question I asked myself all the time, but there was no one to answer me, because I really was alone. Suddenly, it was like I got my vision back for a second. “Please …” Someone in front of me was begging me for mercy. I could hear it in their voice and see it in their eyes. It was just a young male. From the scent of it, a lone wolf, but I didn’t listen. Some thought appeared, I for some reason believed he was a threat, even if he didn’t look that way. He needed to be removed, so I removed him. His blood filled my mouth, I tore through his flesh and soon he wasn’t moving. Good … He shouldn’t be moving … or should he? I didn’t stay to watch the body. I was pulled back into darkness again, unsure what had happened or why I needed the male gone now. When I could see him, I knew I needed to hurt him, but now that I was trapped in the darkness again, I wasn’t sure why I had hurt him. Why was he a threat again? I had no explanation as to what was going on. I just knew I needed to be somewhere … or run from something. Was I running? Was I chasing something? I had no idea what was happening … and I wasn’t sure I wanted to know. I just … I just wanted the pain to stop. -Valerio- As I got off the plane, I was met with the sight of my friends. Garrett, Evan, James, Damien, Lucian, and Chris. They were all there. After Hunter had agreed to search for Octavia and not kill her, he had sent Raiden and Kenzo back out there, but I didn’t need to go after them now. Instead, I was given some food that I actually managed to eat, some fresh clothes, a shower, and a bed to sleep in for the night, but I refused the bed. I needed to go back. I needed to coordinate with the others, giving them the message that the hunt on Octavia was not to kill her but to trap her. Now that Hunter said he might have someone who could help Octavia, I felt a little more hopeful. I simply couldn’t let her die. We had been through so damn much. I couldn’t just give up on her now. My mate was stronger than anyone. Even me. If anyone could survive what she had been through, it was her. “Welcome home,” Garrett said and smiled, as I came down the stairs. He walked over to me and hugged me tightly. I hugged him back, having missed my oldest friend. The rest came over to greet me too. It had been a few months since I last saw them, and back then I hadn’t really been myself. I had locked myself in my office, unable to do anything but think about Octavia and where she was and what had happened to her. Now I was more focused. Now I was going to rescue my mate, and these males were going to help me. “How are you feeling?” James asked. “Tired as f*ck,” I told him, making him smile a little. “Didn’t get any sleep on the plane?” I shook my head. “I won’t be able to sleep before I get her back,” I said. Everyone looked rather sad, but they had not heard Hunter and I talk. “Alpha …” “No!” I said, knowing James was going to try and say what Hunter had told me before we agreed on trying to save my queen. “Don’t f*cking say it.” “Just wanted to know if you wanted something to eat on the way home,” he said instead and held up his hands. “No, we are going straight home, and then I need to have a meeting with you all.” “Does that mean everyone?” Chris asked. I nodded. The females should know what was going to happen now as well. They were all close friends with Octavia, and I had no doubt in my mind they were ready to help in any way they could, even if it just meant convincing their mates. We all got in the cars they had used to drive here and then went straight home. I didn’t wait for any of them, as I walked inside, anxious about telling them of my plans. The others quickly heard me come inside and appeared from everywhere. “You’re back!” I heard Lily say excitedly. “Yes, and we are having a meeting. Gather the rest,” I said, and took the steps two at a time. I went up to the second floor where my office was, and it wasn’t long before the rest entered as well, scattering in the big office as I went to sit down behind my desk. The last one closed the door, and then everyone turned their attention on me. “So, what is this about?” Garrett asked. “I found her,” I said. Everyone looked both sad and shocked as I told them this. “And?” Isabella asked. “Is she …” “She got away,” I said. “Hunter’s men, Kenzo and Raiden had been sent out to kill her, but I got in the way of that.” “Alpha, we do need to …” “James, no!” I told him. “I am not putting a bullet in her head until I know I can’t do more for her.” “You have a plan?” Damien asked. I nodded. “Hope.” “What about Hope?” Lara asked. James had texted her telling her to meet us over here. “Well, she might be able to help,” I said. “Being a Spiritual and all of that.” “Well, they did remove my mark,” Selene said. “And she cured Hunter,” Lara said. “This might not be a bad plan.” I smiled a little and nodded. “So, the plan is to catch her?” Chris asked. “Yes, the plan is to catch her and then we will see if Hope can’t use her powers to help her. She is our best option right now,” I told them. “Did you talk to her?” Lara asked. I shook my head. “I needed to get back here, to make sure none of you were trying to kill Octavia.” “We were all looking for you,” Chris told me. “We hoped to wait with the other part.” “She is killing a lot of people though,” Selene said. “A lot is going on in the community. Rumors of wolves and humans dying all over.” I sighed, knowing this was true. It was how I had found her. I followed the trail of bodies, and I knew others were too. I had run into a few of Connor’s followers and had to kill them before they got to her. Sadly, Kenzo and Raiden had been a lot harder to take down. Especially Kenzo … I had been able to knock down Raiden, but Kenzo … When I tried punching him, he had easily caught my fist with his hand and I couldn’t forget the smile on his lips, while his red eyes shone. There was something different about him ... I couldn’t say what, but he had powers unlike a normal male. He was almost as strong as me. Red eyes … Who had red eyes? I knew I knew … I just couldn’t remember. It was a mystery for another time. For now, I needed to focus on Octavia. I was going to get my mate back. There was no doubt about that.

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