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Chapter 3.1

A/N: Never expected to write this. But it happened. So... tell me what you think!

Mali Bidaya bit into her lips. Today her Omicron’s son, Dave was coming. Everything had to be perfect. The female Omicron, Boonsri was a harsh female who loved her son more than anything. And Mali being the Epsilon’s daughter did not help.

“Mali!” Boonsri shouted. “Come here at once!”

Giving her best friend the way to the stove to sort minced beef, Mali rushed upstairs.

Her second best friend, Wirat came running towards her. “Did you see Lawan?”

She nodded. “I left her at the stove. She is sorting beef.”

Leaving him behind, she finally made to the Omicron office. “You called me, Omicron Boonsri?”

That female glared at her, clutching the curtain. “I said violet. Violet, Mali. Why is it pink?”

Mali wanted to tell that the colour was lilac and it was due to the dull lighting of the office that Boonsri installed it appeared pink. But she held her tongue. She could talk against anything to Boonsri, but everything fell deaf on her ears regarding her son.

“I-I am sorry, Omicron,” Mali whispered, looking down.

“Sorry?” Boonsri yelled. “You think sorry will make my son like this colour miraculously?”

“No, Omicron,” Mali said.

With one pull, Boonsri ripped the curtains and threw them on her. “Change it now!”

Wincing, Mali picked the curtain and tried to walk out.

“Wait!” Boonsri said. Closing her eyes, Mali turned. The Omicron had a decanter in her hand. “Whiskey? My son drinks only rum. Spiced rum from Evergreen. Get that.”

Nodding, Mali walked out. Chalot, Lawan’s elder brother passed the room. “Mali, is everything okay?”

She nodded and gave him a thin smile. “I am fine. Can... can you ask someone to get spiced rum from Everygreen for the Omicron?”

His light brown eyes crossed as he understood. “Dave?”

She nodded again. “Yes.”

“I will send someone to get it,” he said and took his phone as he walked away.

Mali sighed. This Omicron was coming with his chosen bride. Why were they nearly cleaning the entire coven land?

Glaring at the curtain, Mali dragged herself to the nearest shop to buy that blasted violet ones.

********

It was about nine at night when the received the news that Dave was coming. Mali looked at her dress and closed her eyes. She hated the one she wore. It was a black dress that dipped low and showed her cleavage. Not to mention, it exposed her legs right from upper thighs. Had she not know any better, she would think she was a slave.

Next to her, Lawan was no better. She was dressed in a similar dress, but hers was bright orange. Lawan was vigorously putting on the make-up with hatred.

“I hate this!” Lawan said, her eyes sharp. “I hate dressing like this for Dave of all people.”

Mali bit her lips and gently applied the lip gloss. For a girl who loved to get pretty, she hated these make-up items. She wanted to throw them all out. Only if her half-brother was here.

Like the Omicron pair knew that Rune would be hard, they sent him away. Had he been here, he would never allow them both to get dressed like this.

A gentle knock echoed through the room. One sniff and Mali could tell who it was out.

“Come in, Epsilon!” Lawan called.

The door opened and Apinya Bidaya entered. She was a female who managed to look regal and mysterious. But Mali, being her daughter knew what her mother was feeling. Apinya hated this as much as they both did. The Zeta pair were lucky. They did not have a child who would go through this torment.

Apinya said in a soft voice. “Lawan, Wirat wants to talk to you.”

Knowing that she was dismissed, Lawan left the room, taking her clutch with her.

“Mother,” Mali said, wearing the dangling earring.

Apinya held her arm out. “Drink, Mali. We don’t know what might happen tonight.”

Mali’s eyes widened. Mali was just matured to consume blood. She was not yet older to find what her powers were. “Mother-”

“Drink, Mali,” Apinya commanded. “If anything goes amiss, I will lend you my strength.”

“Why?”

The Epsilon shook her head. “Rune is not here. As much as he was not born to my mate, he is still my son. And hence, family. If he was here, I would not worry. But since Boonsri has-”

Just like that, her mother held herself.

Mali’s eyes widened. “Has who?

When her mother did not answer, she pressed. “Who, mama?”

Apinya swallowed hardly. “She has Buppha.”

Mali froze. “My younger sister?”

Apinya nodded. “I am sorry, Mali. I wish I could stop this, but... I am in a position that I can not. I have to leave you to fight this on your own. I can only lend you my strength.”

Pursing her lips, Mali nodded. “What will happen tonight, mother?”

The Epsilon closed her eyes and then opened. “Dave is known for having a harem. He already has three sex-slaves under him. I... don’t want you to become one of them.”

“Rune-”

“Rune is not here!” Apinya said, her voice distraught. “Boonsri sent him away. Sean is with him. She sent them both to the Halls. They cannot ignore a summoning and knowing that Boonsri’s brother is a part of the Halls, she pulled them both out. We have to do this on our own.”

Mali bit her lips. Since she had not yet developed her powers, she was considered immature under everyone’s eyes. That meant, no matter who they were, they could not touch her. Dave could not pull her into his harem.

“Lawan is matured-”

Apinya looked away. “Wirat agreed.”

“Agreed for what, mama?” she asked.

Apinya took a deep breath. “He agreed to mark her now. Without a reason, Dave can’t kill Wirat and as long as Wirat is alive, he can’t harm Lawan.”

Horror gripped her. “What of Lawan’s mate? Of his mate?”

“Lawan is not going to mark him,” Apinya said. “When they meet their respective mates, they will part ways. This is to fool Dave for tonight.”

“Don’t Boonsri know-”

Apinya shook her head. “If they say that the bond just clicked and Wirat could not control himself, the Omicron must accept the bond.”

At least her friend would be safe.

“Drink, my daughter,” Apinya said, offering her left forearm again. “This is the last strength I can offer you tonight.”

Extending her fangs, Mali pierced into her mother’s veins. She was not yet matured. She would be safe, right?

***********

It was around midnight that the car came. The doors opened and the future Omicron came out, with two females side by side with him. They wore much more revealing clothes than she and they gave a dazzling smile to the coven. While one was a vampire the other was a witch.

From the car that stopped behind his, a female vampire dressed in gold stepped out and glanced at Dave.

“My love,” she called.

Dave turned and gave her a smile. “Leigh.”

From the way Dave eyed her, Mali knew that this Leigh was his chosen mate. Behind Leigh, another female who wore revealing clothes much like the first came out. But unlike them, she was handcuffed and her eyes were sharper than any blade she had seen.

Leigh made her way to Dave and he took her hand and kissed it. “My darling.”

Leigh giggled and turned her face to see Boonsri and Sunan, the Omicron pair. “Mother,” she bowed once, “Father,” she bowed again.

Pleased by her, Boonsri rushed ahead and kissed her on her cheeks. “Welcome, daughter.”

Mali snorted internally. Daughter? That was Dave’s chosen mate. She was an imposter.

How she wished Lawan was next to her right now. But that girl was happily marked and was with her chosen for now. Wirat had been their best friend and Mali knew that he would never harm her. Not to mention, that boy was crazily in love with Lawan. As much as he could use this chance on Lawan, Mali knew Wirat would never do that sort of thing.

“Zoya being adamant?” Dave asked Leigh when he took a rope.

It was then her eyes widened. That was not a rope. It was a leash tied around Zoya’s neck. Was she a vampire or an animal?

Bile rose to her throat. Standing opposite, Apinya slightly shook her head.

Mali looked down. This night was a nightmare. One she wanted to wake up from desperately.

Footsteps clicked and a shadow fell over her. The half-moon was shining without any consent and cast a ghastly veil over the earth it saw.

She had chosen her place carefully. Next to her stood Kanya, a female older than her by seven years. Kanya was the head-trainer of the coven. Mali stood at the topmost step of the entrance.

One glance at the shoe, Mali knew who it was before her. What did Dave want from her?

He leaned forward and inhaled deeply. “Heavenly,” he muttered.

Mali gulped. She was still immature and she could not have a mate yet. She was still protected. If only she knew what a fool she was.

He sniffed further and then lifted her head up. It was that second, her body tingled and his woodsy scent made her go crazy. It was that second when she gazed into his leather brown eyes that she knew. That touch made her crave things she normally would have been shy of.

It was that second she knew that not only this night would be a nightmare for her. But the rest of her life.

It was that second she was tricked by deceit.

That second when she gazed into the eyes of her mate.

“Mate,” he whispered softly and kissed her fully on her lips.

Shocked, Mali did not respond nor push him away. After hearing so many unjustly things about him, how could her mind accept him? How could it follow that brainless heart that fluttered when his soft lips touched hers? How could her heart convince that critic mind of the wonderous feeling of mate-bond? Who would win? The tales that revolved around him or the mate-bond between them?

Dave pulled away first and then turned towards the coven.

It was then unorthodox jealousy coursed through her. Dave had come here with a chosen mate. And three females. She was made to please him. She was there to love him. She was enough for him.

She wanted to rip those females’ hair out of their head and skin them alive for even touching her mate. She wanted blood. Being the Epsilon’s daughter, these three females did not pose any threat to her. She would fight for her mate.

“I met my mate!” he announced to the coven.

Hope soared in Mali’s heart. This announcement meant a lot of things. It meant he acknowledged her as his mate, his equal. Meant that Leigh was nothing. That harem was nothing.

He took her hands in his. “Mali Bidaya, Epsilon’s daughter is my mate!”

While a blush did crawl to her cheeks, she was proud. Proud to stand by her mate.

“My love,” Leigh crooned and touched his hand.

Prying her hand from Dave, Mali snarled. “Stay away from him.”

Dave chuckled and there was not a sound more heavenly than that. “My mate is already possessive. I shall not delay.”

With that, he marked her right in front of the coven. While Ranked members usually announced their marking, they never marked in front of the coven or pack or tribe. It was an intimate ritual between mates where no one was the witness. It was just their hearts who stood by. The marking must not be viewed by others.

For marking in front of others was a display of ownership of one over the other. It said the one marking was dominant and the one marked submissive. That both were never equal.

This disregard of the sacred mating ritual should have told her loud. That glint in his eyes should have told her. The way he eyed Kanya that night should have told her. The way he did not care about her pain during their mating should have told her. At least that hesitance, when she asked to mark him that night, should have.

When everything was clear, how did she fail to see it? Was it the mate bond?

*********

The next day, she woke up with a huge smile on her face. She touched her neck and sighed dreamily. The memories of last night were enough to make her blush bright in the morning. She was a mated female now.

But the bed next to her was cold. Perhaps he had gone out to get her breakfast? That must be it.

Smiling to herself, Mali took a bathrobe and wrapped it securely around herself. Opening the door, she peeked out. No one was there. Feeling happy, she literally ran down to the kitchen to surprise Dave. After all, this was his private mansion and who would be there?

“Just like that, Dave,” a female moaned. “Just like that.”

When the familiar grunt reached her ears, Mali froze. Instead of going to the kitchen, she opened the doors of the guest room to find Dave fucking Leigh.

“Dave?” Mali shrilled.

Instead of feeling guilty, he smirked at her and continued to do what he was doing. “Mali, my mate. Going to make breakfast for us? That’s a good little mate, isn’t she, Leigh?”

Leigh laughed. “She is.”

He looked up. “I am tired of all the activities of last night. Prepare more food for me.”

It was then Mali noticed a female laying spent on the bed. She choked. Wasn’t she enough? After her, he went to two other females?

Closing her mouth, she ran out, fleeing to her mother’s place.

*******

It took hours for Apinya and Cintna to calm her down. Both the females were distraught but they did their best. No male ever cheated on his mate like this. This was a dishonour to the bond they had.

Only if Rune was here.

Chalot was gripping the glass he held. Being Rune’s friend and her best friend’s brother, he was raging at the injustice meted out to her.

But how could anyone break their bond? They were mates, one blessed by Luna and they had finished the mating.

It was by noon, Dave came. “Open the door, Epsilon!”

Apinya opened the door with calmness and said. “Get out. You dishonoured my daughter. You ruined the sacred bond.”

“Epsilon!” Dave warned. “I am here to fetch my bride. Give her to me.”

“Never,” her father snarled standing behind his mate. “You will not get my daughter.”

With one flick, Dave shoved them aside and entered.

“Get lost!” Mali screamed. “I don’t want to see your face!”

“I am your Omicron, Mali,” he said in a forceful voice. “Better listen to me.”

“Never,” Mali sneered. “I’d rather die.”

Dave shook her parents off and pulled her. With not having the powers herself, she was weak. What powers did Dave have?

But she was pushed back by Chalot.

“You are a pathetic excuse of an Omicron,” Chalot spat. “Leave her alone.”

Dave sneered. “If you wanted to fuck her, then like Wirat you should have marked her before I arrived. Your loss, loser.”

“She is like my sister!” Chalot defended.

“Whatever,” Dave dismissed. “Don’t they all say that?”

“She is-”

That was all Chalot could say when Dave’s hands snapped his neck. Knowing that if he left Chalot like that, he could be saved, Dave went further and ripped his heart open, spraying the blood on her.

With that crazed look, the monster looked at her. “Unless you want your mother and father to end the same way, come with me!”

She gulped and followed him out. The first of many more submissions to come.

********

Lawan brushed her hair. “Must you do this?”

Mali nodded. “I have to greet the East Coven members.”

Lawan’s life was pretty easy. The male who marked her that night to save her turned out to be her true mate and they had mated that night itself. When she heard of Chalot’s death, she was furious. She wanted to kill Dave herself, but Mali forbade it. Not because she was afraid of her soul slowly dying, but because Dave could crush minds and she did not want Lawan to have the same death. Even after one year, Dave found solace in the arms of the harem he had.

With that, the powerless Omicron of Summer Coven left the confines of her room to greet the guests. One sharp pain from her chest told her what her mate was doing. Instead of honouring the East Coven, he was tossing the sheets with Lana, Leigh’s sister.

With Lawan and Wirat as the Theta pair, and Rune as the Epsilon, her life was manageable. Barely. Drinking the portion that prevented her from feeling her mate was a blessing.

On the other side of the door stood three vampires. While she knew two of them, the third caught her eyes.

Madina and Addis were the Theta pair of East Coven. Mali had spoken to them and they seemed to be a fairly lively pair. But who was this third male who accompanied them?

“Please,” Mali muttered. “Come in.”

With a smile, Madina entered followed by her mate. The last vampire stood transfixed on her, just as she was on him. Had she not have that mark on her neck, she would gladly take this male as her lover for the night. He was plain hot and handsome and... sexy.

For the first time, she felt a primal roar of arousal in her after the first night with her mate. His toffee coloured hair fell gracefully in a curl on his face that she itched to push it away. And those blue eyes. By Kamaria! Even the brightest sapphire that Dave bought for Leigh could not compare to that.

He licked his lips and she felt hot just seeing it. What was wrong with her?

“He is Riley Garcia,” Madina said with a chuckled. “He was a part of our coven and he left due to some issues. He came to visit a family member and... let’s say, I pulled him here today.”

Mali nodded. “Welcome, Riley.”

The male laughed. “On the first-name basis directly, Omicron?”

She flushed. She had just wanted to try the way his name rolled. “I am sorry-”

“It’s okay,” he said, entering her house.

Addis rolled his eyes. “Even though he is an Omicron, he cannot grow.”

Mali then realised her blunder. This male was an Omicron. Was she that drooling over him that she failed to see his rank? Even if he was the Omicron of a nameless coven, he was still an Omicron. He deserved that respect.

“I must apologise, Omicron,” she said.

With a laugh, he dismissed it and they began to talk about the spices that Summer Coven often traded. Lawan and Madina were good friends and soon they plunged into a conversation of shoes and necklaces. While she and Addis finalised the trade that was still going on, Riley saw nowhere but her.

Feeling a bit bothered, she excused herself and rushed to the kitchen to get herself a glass of water.

The tantalising scent of Riley Garcia invaded her nose. Before she could turn, he locked her with his hands, his front pressed to her back.

“Why does your scent tease me, Omicron?” he whispered in her ears.

She swallowed. She wanted to shake off his hands but wanted it on her skin at the same time. If Dave found out-

“Please, Omicron,” she said. “Release me. I have a mate. I am marked and mated.”

“I don’t think your mate cares about that,” he said.

“My mate may cheat on me,” she said but made no move to move out of his arms. “I won’t cheat.”

“Really?” he asked and within a second, he spun her around. His chest pressing her breast.

She stilled when she heard his heart was fluttering to the tune of hers.

Giving her a cheeky smile, he bent down and brushed his lips across hers. That was all it took to break her restraints. Deprived of physical love, she threw her arms around him and kissed him hard. How could Dave know?

As their kiss got passionate, so did her desire. She wanted him to-

No! What was happening? Was this vampire’s power seduction? Was that why she gave in easily?

Breaking the kiss she pulled and shoved him.

Riley was staring at her in a new light, with reverence and adoration. “Mali-”

“Leave, Riley Garcia,” she whispered. “I am mated.”

He raised his hands as if to caress her cheek but then left with a forlorn face.

She did not go out to send off her guests. Five minutes later, Lawan came in and touched her shoulder.

“What happened, Mali?”

But she did not reply to her friend. She just touched her lips and remembered his taste.

*********

A week later, Dave came by. He had caught a rogue vampire and he summoned her to the prison. For what, Mali did not know.

Gathering her leftover courage, Mali walked to the prison. There, outside a dirty cell, stood Dave. Just him.

In the cell was a vampire who was sleeping. Mali frowned. No, that caught vampire was not sleeping. He was drugged.

“Mali,” Dave called, his voice filled with saccharine sweetness.

“Dave,” she replied.

He smirked at her. “A Rogue vampire. He might as well be an Omicron of a small coven.”

Not wanting to anger him, Mali agreed. “He might be.”

“I could kill him,” Dave said. “With the snap of my finger.”

Sweat drenched her back. She knew what he was implying.

“Especially when he touched the beer I ordered,” Dave said. “Mine.”

Mali gulped. She definitely knew where this was going.

“You could,” she said.

“I did,” Dave said with a smile.

Mali frowned and willed her heart to beat normally. Why was she having irrational fear for a vampire who she barely knew?

A vampire who kissed you like you were his sole purpose of survival, a part of her mind said.

“What do you mean?” she asked.

Dave smiled. “Riley Garcia, Omicron of a new pack. I just killed him this morning when I stumbled on this rogue.”

Her breath caught and her muscles were immobilised. Dave killed Riley? For what reason?

“M-May I a-ask why?”

“He touched something that was mine,” Dave said. And to prove his point, Dave kissed her hard. But unlike Riley’s kiss, this kiss was tainted. It was brutal and painful. “I will not let it go.”

When he released her, Mali licked her lips to taste blood. “What do you mean, Dave?”

“You thought I did not know about that kiss?” Dave snarled in her face, gripping her arm. “You kissed him like a slut. Should I announce to my men that my mate is game for them too? If your answer is no, then the only male you look better me.”

Mali gasped when he released her. Allow his men to have their way with her? Was that all she was reduced to?

Dave then glanced at the unconscious vampire. “I am going to kill him tomorrow in front of the coven to teach you all a lesson.”

With that, Dave walked out. Mali closed her eyes and tears trickled down. Since when was she reduced to this? Where was that female who prided herself being Apinya Bidaya’s daughter?

“That was pretty shitty,” the vampire said.

Mali glanced at him. So he was playing unconscious with Dave?

“I have seen better days,” she sighed.

That vampire smirked. “I am Niran.”

She shook her head. “How do you have the guts to smile when Dave is going to kill you tomorrow?”

“Why do I have the feeling that you are going to release me?” Niran asked with a smile on his lips.

She inhaled deeply. Dave had killed Riley for kissing her. Should that mean she should kill all those females he slept with?

But how could Dave control her so much? Why did she allow it to happen? Was Riley’s death necessary for her to realise where she was?

Not anymore. She would not allow Dave to get away. Even if it meant releasing the rogue vampire. It was an act of defiance. The first of many to come.

With that, Mali pressed her thumb to the lock and to her surprise the doors opened. Guess she had to thank Rune to give her powers subtly.

Niran shrugged. “I was overconfident. I thought I could win over Dave. But I should have seen that poison and that underhand trick coming. That was the reason why I was caught.”

She said, “Does not matter. Flee now.”

Niran then took a silver band from his wrist. “Take it. If you ever find yourself in an unfavourable situation, flash this band. Everyone knows who this belongs to. No matter what, they will let you go free. Even if you kill a Royal, you can walk free if you have this.”

Mali glanced at it. “What makes it so important?”

Niran gave her a crooked smile. “I hope you know Torre.”

Mali snorted. Who did not know that trading legend?

“I guess you know,” Niran said. “Well, the Royal family gave it to Torre and since Torre owes me one, he gave it to me. Since I owe you for releasing me, I am giving it to you.”

She gaped. “If Torre owes you one, he could save you out and-”

“The drug is still in my system,” Niran said. “I don’t have enough energy to contact my friends. Much less Torre. So I have to rely on you. I just have enough power to erase the memory of Dave ever taking me and you releasing me.”

“It’s all recorded in the cameras that you are here,” Mali said in a resigned voice.

Niran smirked. “That’s my power, Omicron. When I say I can remove the memory, I can remove all traces and proofs if it. Only you will remember it. No one in this coven can know.”

Mali blinked. “If that is your power, you need a lot of energy to do that, and you can, in fact, use that to contact your friends-”

Niran mused. “What’s the fun in that, Mali?”

With a wink, he left. Faster than lightning.

Shaking her head, Mali walked out the prison and as expected the guards looked at her in confusion. They could not comprehend why she was there. Laughing to herself, Mali walked towards Dave’s office.

The afternoon winter sun was shy and hid behind a curtain of a thick grey veil. Did he promise to not be a witness too?

The vampires gave her nod of acknowledgement which she returned.

She walked with high-spirits that she had defied Dave’s command.

But the voices in his office stopped her happiness.

“Mali is not your true mate then?” a female voice asked. “So, the experiments have not failed?”

“She is not,” Dave said and Mali could imagine him smirking. “I did just like you told and she believed that she is my mate. You gave me this bond. But since Mali and I are Marked and Mated, she does believe that we are true mates. What’s more, the one Luna gives is completely masked. You, Melantha, are the true Goddess.”

A/N: What do you think of Mali?

Of Riley, Rune and Niran?

What do you think will happen?

Wait for it. Yes, pretty soon, there will be one from Lawan’s pov which tells how she became the weapons’ master of Summer Coven.

Until next time,

~Quill

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