Antonio paced the guest bedroom like a caged beast.
My son defeated me.
Shame poured out from him and his beast screeched, destroying the bedpost. His claws ripped the wood into shreds causing splinters to fly across the room.
I had a reputation of being undefeatable. All lost.
I should have fought till my death.
Did I go easy on him because he was my son?
However, there was no mistaking the dominant beast, and he witnessed Lucian shift into his enormous beast. Hell, he even smelled a warrior pee his pants at the sight of Lucian’s beast. Lucian might be strong, but he was not the King material and that mate of his was worthless.
Lucian was soft and compassionate. A King should be ruthless and ready to kill to protect his people. Lucian did not even bother implementing any serious harm to his opponents. He shifted and showed dominance forcing them to submit.
He should have killed Raymond or at least drew blood to satisfy the beast. Antonio could only see this as weakness. As for his mate, she was a puny human. She will grow old and die one day like all the others. Lucian will be left broken and forced to live in her memory for the rest of his immortal life.
The longer they stay together the stronger their bond will grow. Lucian might even end up dead unable to cope with the loss of a mate. Any child brought into this world by them would be an abomination.
With Audriana, Lucian had a future. An immortal life and Lycan offspring’s with strong bloodline. With Alexa, his children would be weaker and there was no telling if they will be an immortal like him or a mortal like her.
No matter how hard he tried to comfort his beast he couldn’t shake his concern for Lucian. He loved his son in his own way and would let nothing happen to him. He must save Lucian from the heartbreak. It was now or never.
The only way he saw to break the bond was to kill the female his son has claimed. She appeared good for his son. Lucian would suffer for a while and he will be fine once he got over his loss. Lucian’s beast might go berserk and Antonio did not care. It sounded better than a heartbreak he would suffer.
All he could think was a way to save his son from the imminent heartbreak. He did not have time to think about this when he was in the human realm. Now he thought about it, he felt responsible for his son’s happiness.
With Audriana, Lucian had a bright future. With that human he had nothing. His beast believed what he thought and clawed from within his chest.
A knock sounded at the door and his beta walked in with a determined look. “Alpha,” he bowed as Antonio continued to pace. “Prince Lucian has chosen wrong. He has no future with that human mate of his, she will die one day. That is the nature’s course. There has not been a record of a human being mated to a supernatural,” Raymond stated from his position.
“I agree!” Antonio growled and a smile of victory spread across Raymond’s face. The King was so easy to convince than he thought. He kept his head bowed so Antonio couldn’t see his smirk.
“Then I have a perfect solution for this problem, Your Majesty,” Raymond stated with a wicked grin.
Antonio stopped pacing and looked at his second in command, wheels turning in his head.
Giselle and Mirunalini sat in the library. The witch wasn’t allowed to go back to her cave and instead of the dungeons now they held her captive in the library until they prepared a room for her. They had snatched her amulet which let her teleport earlier and she sat at the library feeling helpless.
“Something is going to happen. I can feel it in my bones,” Mirunalini stated for the hundredth time and Giselle sighed in defeat. “You don’t understand Giselle. I need to get to my cauldron. Something terrible will happen,” Mirunalini said again pulling her dark hair in frustration.
“I never thought it would come to this. I am happy for Lucian but I can’t help this uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach. Antonio locked himself in the guest room and won’t allow anyone inside. I don’t know what to do,” Giselle ranted. “Antonio locking himself up like this is not good. It never was,” she continued.
Dimitri had left to visit their parents as he had not gone to their Kingdom in the past thirteen years. Giselle felt all alone. Mirunalini was always right when she said something was wrong.
What are you up to Antonio? Giselle thought as another beast flashed through her mind, Raymond. She didn’t believe Raymond would accept his defeat that easily. Her instincts said he would find a way around this.
Giselle’s eyes widened at the dark thought came out of nowhere and she flew past the guards towards Antonio’s room. “Where is your King?” She growled at the guards stationed at the corridor when she found the room empty. His scent still fresh, showing that he left the room only moments ago.
“The King and Royal Beta Raymond had gone out,” one guard answered with his head bowed.
“Where?!” Anger flared within Giselle as her instincts screamed that he was up to no good. His mental barrier was up and she couldn’t feel his emotions anymore.
“That I know not, my Queen,” the guard shrunk himself under her scrutinizing gaze. There was no point in lashing out at him. He spoke the truth.
She rushed to the castle entrance following her mate’s scent, only to be stopped by the elite guards at the door. “Apologies my Queen, the King has ordered to keep you inside the castle along with your friend.” The guards informed with blank expressions.
“How dare you? I am your Queen!” Giselle yelled.
The guards did not even flinch at her words. Though she was their Queen, she was not a Lycan. They respected her but did not fear her like they did Antonio. If a fight broke out, they could easily take her out.
“We cannot disobey our King’s orders. He commanded us,” Quentin informed as he shifted under her gaze.
Quentin, Kieran, and Callum were the only guards with kind hearts. She trusted them more than the others. Her trust in them was the only reason she sent them with Dimitri in search of Lucian, she did not trust the others well to protect Dimitri.
Giselle nodded and pivoted on her heels to the library to speak with Mirunalini. There was no way they could get out the castle. Antonio now knew of their secret pathways and the corridors were now guarded.
Mirunalini did not have her amulet which let her teleport and as for Giselle her medallion was taken away from her so, there was no way she could contact Dimitri. Only if I could find where Antonio had hidden the medallion.
Dragging Mirunalini from the library Giselle rushed to Antonio’s office. The medallion should be in his office. The one place he spent most of his time apart from their room or the training arena.
Gretchen smiled on seeing the King of Lycans standing before her helplessly. Her little puppet Raymond had dragged his King to her, seeking a solution to break Lucian’s bond with his mate. They did not know Lucian was bonded to the most powerful woman in the world. The one made of light and justice.
They thought her as a mere mortal. Only if they knew she was an immortal like them. Gretchen smirked wickedly. They need not know. Gretchen was happy to do their deed.
With the girl’s powers not awaken to the, and she’d be at her weakest if I break her bond. This way I can consume her heart without a fight. Gretchen’s mouth watered at the thought. That meant more power…
“I am honored my King,” she drawled in her raspy voice. “There is a way to break the bond,” she cackled, making Antonio flinch.
He had heard of this witch. She was not to be trusted. However, Raymond trusted her and he had to do this for his son’s sake. He had to break Lucian’s bond with the human. That was the only way to save him.
“I will need Lucian or the girl’s blood,” Gretchen announced.
Antonio thought for a moment before his eyes widened and he extended his claws towards her, which had dried blood of Lucian. He didn’t clean himself after the fight and it seemed useful.
Gretchen collected the dried blood from his claws in a wooden bowl. “We will do the ritual tonight, Alpha King. I shall prepare for the ritual and meet me back here after midnight,” Gretchen dismissed them as she carried the bowl towards her cauldron like a treasure.
Lucian mated the girl and that meant his their blood was mixed. So, to break the bond, his blood alone was enough. She smiled internally and waited for the King and his minion left her cave before starting with the ritual.
Cackling to herself she stepped inside the huge pentagram she had drawn earlier. Placing a fire lit oil lamp on each end of the pentagram, she looked up to see Audriana watching her with a determined look.
Gretchen smiled at her and drew close to the cauldron, her lips murmuring ancient spells of their ancestors. The black liquid inside the cauldron bubbled and dark smoke surrounded them as it showed a sleeping Lucian and Alexa.
Gretchen’s voice rose echoing through the cave walls as she continued to speak in an ancient language that Audriana did not understand. Audriana watched Gretchen with no fear as the witch walked around the cauldron throwing in some herbs, all the while her lips chanting an unknown spell.
Audriana had witnessed her father meeting Gretchen for years and when discovered that Lucian has mated that thing, she ran straight to her cave asking for her help. The witch had taken her blood, which she donated without thinking of the consequences.
Now she watched the witch, waiting for her chance. She knew what to do when the time comes. The silver sword strapped to her hip. Audriana traced the hilt and her beast shivered in anticipation, she couldn’t wait to do the nasty deed she had agreed to.
Gretchen’s inhuman voice brought her out of her mind. The witch was now tying a red colored thread connecting the oil lamps. For each knot, she tied she murmured a spell, binding them with magic. Dark energy surrounded the witch, their hungry tendrils licking her skin like a second skin.
The cave shimmered around her and Audriana gasped when the cave was filled with multiple black shadows with hollow eyes. She had never witnessed such creatures in her life. An unknown fear gripped her heart just by looking at the shadows.
Their lifeless eyes stared somewhere distant, and they flew around the cave as if they were waiting for their next meal. Gretchen had a sinister smile on her face as she looked at her dark spirits that rose from the hell beneath.
They were her minions who did all the dirty deeds on behalf of her. Gretchen had mixed Lucian’s dried blood with many unknown herbs earlier. She now poured the mix in the pentagram and some into the cauldron.
“It’s beginning!” Her voice—high pitched, inhumane and terrific.
Audriana watched with wide eyes as the spirits moved faster and she fell to the ground when one flew past her. The unearthly noises they made would last in her nightmares forever.