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The Vampire's Sweet Secret

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Oh, sh*t! At first, I wasn’t sure what it was, but as I inhaled, my heart started to pound faster. When I did it again, it felt like I was drugged with the strongest and sweetest scent I had ever smelled. It was a mixture of rain and forest, something that reminded me of the old days when I used to be a knight and a fighter. It reminded me of the days I had traveled and all those nights under the open sky, surrounded by the vast forests that no longer existed. I couldn’t explain it, but I had never been affected like this by a scent alone. Her sweet fragrance almost overpowered her usual werewolf scent.

I turned in my chair, slowly bringing the person into view. I had said she was pretty, but now that she stood in front of me and I got a real look at her and smelled her, I suddenly saw the most beautiful woman I had ever laid my eyes on. Her beauty wasn’t the kind where you would look at her and think she was made to perfection.

No, she was hidden well, wearing a black dress that I could see she was uncomfortable in and a blazer too big for her. She had her hair up in a messy ponytail and no makeup on. It looked like she had truly tried to make herself look composed and important, but she seemed like a fish out of water. No wonder she was so unqualified. She definitely didn’t fit in here, and yet I didn’t tell her to go. No, I couldn’t. I felt almost enchanted by her.

She couldn’t really look at me, so nervous and insecure she was. I had no idea what she expected to happen by coming here, but I would listen to her anyway, just so I could keep looking at her some more.

“Well, Calliope, you have 10 minutes. Use them well,” I said, leaning back in my chair as I gestured for her to take a seat in front of me, and she quickly did.

***

Everly, finally liberated from her family's grasp, revels in her newfound role as CEO. However, her life takes an unexpected turn when she hires Ava as her assistant, unaware that Ava is fleeing from an abusive mate.

Pregnant and desperate for safety, Ava hides her identity in New York, where she secures a job at a tech company, finding solace in her newfound anonymity. Yet fate intervenes when she discovers her true mate: Everly.

As their connection deepens, they must confront Ava's past and the looming threat of her former mate. Can their love withstand the secrets that threaten to tear them apart, or will Ava's past destroy their chance of happiness?

To get a deeper understanding of some of the characters it is recommended to read The Hybrid King's Hidden Mate.

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Prologue
Note: This is a darker werewolf/vampire romance. Be aware of abuse, not described s****l abuse, forced pregnancy, and death. -Ava- “No! please don’t... don’t touch me!” But he didn’t listen to me. Why would he? In his eyes, I was his, and there was nothing I could do about that. He grabbed my arm so hard I feared it might break, and then he threw me on the bed. It was always like this, yet tonight he wanted something more. It wasn’t just about pleasure tonight. He had smelled the beginning of it weeks before, sensing I was ready to go into heat. I tried stopping it. I tried finding a way for it not to happen, but he made sure I couldn’t get my hands on any blockers. I even tried getting sterilized in secret, but he had so much control and especially over me. I had no choice, and tonight I, for the first time, wanted him. I could feel it. The heat spread in my body, and then I was suddenly someone else. I lost consciousness for most of the time, but I remembered the beginning of it. How I had crawled to him, wanting him, begging him to give me what I needed so I could quench this heat inside me, and he had f*cked me. He had f*cked me however he liked, and he loved the submission I was showing because in my heat it was all about quenching the fire. It didn’t matter who did it, not even if I hated it when he touched me. I needed to feel better and he had the means for that, so I came to him over and over for however long my heat lasted, and when I woke up... I felt so ashamed and used, but at least he left me alone after that. He didn’t come to me or try to touch me or hurt me. He didn’t want to risk my health because that meant risking the health of his potential heir. I begged the Goddess not to let me get pregnant, but once again, no one listened to my prayers. It was confirmed not long after my heat. I was pregnant. I could even see the pack’s doctor feeling so bad for me. She had treated my wounds many times. She did her best to take care of me, but I needed out! I needed a way to escape if I ever wanted to be happy. “What do you think will happen when this pup is born?” she inquired. “He will probably want another if it is not a boy,” I replied. “And if it is, he will kill you.” Rina had me sit in her office. Zachery had been there when she told us the results. He had demanded to be, just like he had compelled Rina to test my blood. He had left right after, looking so thrilled, but not without making sure to tell Rina that if this baby didn’t live to see the light of the world, then she would end deep in the ground. “Maybe he will still want more,” I mused. “He wants one thing from you. That is why he chose you to begin with,” Rina reminded me. I looked at the ground in front of me, unable to believe this was my life. Unable to understand how I got here. No, scratch that. I understood how I got here, I just didn’t understand how I was not strong enough to run before I became his. I should just have… left. I didn’t care anymore if he slaughtered my parents. They were the ones who gave me to him, not wanting to listen to me. He could kill them for all I care. They would never risk their lives for me anyway. “You need to go, Ava. Run as far away as you can,” she urged. “How? I have no money. He took it all. I have no one to contact. He has kept me isolated for so long. No one will help me,” I lamented. “That is why I have contacted someone,” Rina disclosed. I looked up, seeing the scared look in her eyes, and then I looked over my shoulder, gazing at the door, afraid Zachary might burst through it. “He will stop me.” Rina came over to me, crouching down in front of me, and looking at me with tearful eyes. “I can’t watch it anymore,” she said. “Everything he does to you... No more.” “I can’t escape him.” “Yes, you can! I contacted my sister. She lives in New York. She will get you settled,” Rina assured. “He will find me.” Rina shook her head and then pulled something from her pocket. I looked at the ID card and saw a photo of me, but it wasn’t my name on it. “Calliope Grey?” I queried. Rina nodded. “It is who you will be once you arrive in New York,” she explained. “How will I get out of here?” I inquired. “I have it covered. Zachary will be throwing a party to announce the good news. People will be drinking,” she outlined. “Yes, but Zachary doesn’t drink!” I pointed out. She nodded. “I know.” Rina went to her desk, constantly keeping her eyes on the door. It was not unusual for Zachery to have me watched, and so we had to be quick because someone would definitely come to check on me very soon. We had already been in Rina’s office for too long. She quickly pulled something from a drawer and then walked over to me. She handed me a small plastic bag that could fit inside my hand and with two pills in it. “Crush these and put them in his water. It will dissolve quickly, so he won’t notice. He will feel dizzy, and you will act like a good mate and help him. Get him to bed and then meet me outside the clinic. I will have everything prepared for you. Even someone to take you to the airport,” she instructed. “I-I don’t know if I can do it. He always knows if I am planning something.” “Ava!” Rina hissed and grabbed my arm hard. “You have no choice. Do you really think you can continue to live like this? He is killing you! Eventually, I know he will!” I stared at her, frightened. “And now you got someone else to look out for as well,” she said and glanced at my flat stomach. I swallowed hard. “You deserve so much better,” she insisted. “But I-I...” “I know you are scared, but this might be your only chance. Don’t miss it!” she urged, gripping onto me tighter. “I should have helped you much sooner but I...” “He would have kill you.” She nodded. “He might still.” “Then don’t do this. You shouldn’t die for me!” I protested. “Don’t worry. I have got plans to leave myself. Me and John,” she revealed. John was her mate, one of Zachary’s best warriors, and one of the only people who had ever been kind to me here. “We will leave soon after you do,” she assured. “I-I don’t know if I can,” I admitted. “It’s going to be okay,” Rina reassured me. She grabbed the hand where I held the pills and forced me to close. “It’s all going to be okay. I promise.”

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