Never Ago (Book 1)

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Death Before Death

Ezra slipped into a white turtleneck shirt to hide the tokens of her love. He'd give anything to boast about it when she allows it. Right now, he had her permission nor approval. It was between him and her primarily.

Peering at the letter resting on his night stand, he inhaled and tucked his shirt into the waistband of his pants. His chest refused to embrace oxygen. A weigh held him down as he carefully rounded the bed and left a parting kiss on her eyebrow.

When you cross that threshold, I wish you'd know you're taking my home with you. I wish you'd know I'm living without a heart. He kissed her cheek. Because she's mad at me.

Ready? Cole came through his troubled mind.

No. He sighed. Gimme a min.


His large palm swept over her face in awe and admiration. No poet could pen his love for that fiery little woman who had the power to crumble him down with a simple flick of her finger. His guts wrenched seemingly unwary of her inevitable cruelty. She had no idea the pain she unknowingly inflicted on him with every passing second.

Who knew how sadistic love could be.


She was his safe ground in the middle of a destructive tornado. If that ground slipped, he was done for. And she was damn set on blowing him up while she was at it.

Begrudgingly, Ezra tucked her in and walked out of his house. He stationed two guards outside to keep an eye on her if she needed anything, not that she'd ever ask, and met Cole waiting in a car in his driveway.

"Everything set?" He asked when he jumped into the passenger seat.

Cole nodded and pulled out of the driveway before heading for the border. "The best warriors on duty. Since we're against witches here, I had the guns out too."

Ezra hummed and sank in the seat.

"You sure about coming along? You look pretty distracted." Cole observed.

Ezra palmed his face and drew in a deep breath. "Don't worry, everything's fine. Besides, I'm the Alpha. It's my duty to stand in front of my pack. I swore to protect them."

Cole drummed his fingers on the steering wheel and threw a scrutinizing glance his way. "You look like you slept for one decade and forgot to sleep for the next decade."


"Relieves and tired at the same time."


"Kyne informed me." Cole said after a pause. "He said he took the case in his hands. You'll have all the culprits in the dungeons by the time we're back."

"Not the dungeons," Ezra bit out, his veins nearly popping. "Sixteen feet under."

"I can't say I didn't expect anything like that from Zeke. His greed had no end."

"It will, now." Ezra promised.

Cole parked the car near their awaiting group and slid out of the car. They handed them their guns and holsters. Ezra strapped one gun to his thigh and held the other in his hand.

"Status report." He commanded curtly.

One of the warriors tapped his bluetooth earpiece and listened to the other end.

"We strike in 10 minutes, Alpha."

Cocking his gun, Ezra inspected his group. "Don't capture the rogues. There's no use. Kill on sight." He pointed at five warriors. "Your job is going to get the children out of danger at any cost and make sure they return home safely."

Cole put forth their plan and together they ventured into the forest after they got the signal from the other packs. Sneaking closer to the cave, they spread out and surrounded the area. There were wild rogues guarding the entrance. By the looks of it, they were more than two dozen.

Ezra signaled at Cole from behind a tree. They exchange a nod and attacked with a battle cry. The warriors shifted and took on the rogues. Ezra shot three of them straight in their chests and cleared the entrance. The five warriors were astonished at the state of the children. They were all in a trance, their eyes glossed over and seated in a pool of red water. It was not blood but it definitely had blood in it.

The children were successfully rescued and led away from the chaos. Ezra kept an eye on their retreating backs. His shoulders ached in exhaustion. Perhaps that was the reason he missed the incoming spear made out of silver.

The fatal glint of the deadly weapon alarmed Cole. "Ezra!" He screamed and threw himself in front of death to save his friend.

Ezra whirled around and staggered as he witnessed the spear tear through his best friend's chest. His legs almost gave out from under him. His mind went blank for a split second.

"Cole," he shouted, terrified. "No!"

In a blink, he threw himself to the ground and caught Cole before his body could descend to the ground. His skin sizzled and burned when he yanked the spear out and flicked it away. His warriors surrounded him roared at the rogues.

"No, no, no," Ezra frantically pushed on the wound to stop the bleeding. "Stay with me buddy, please, stay with me."

Cole coughed blood out and hunched. His hand clutched Ezra's shirt and wheezed.

"Hang in there motherfucker. You're not going anywhere." He scooped him with great difficulty and signaled at the warriors to clear the way. "Don't pass out on me!"

Just then, a hot blast struck them. Ezra was sent flying off, the warriors thrown to their feet as a black mist spiralled around Cole. A flash of silver hair, rustle of blood red fabric and the shadow of a woman was all their minds could register disappearing into the mist.

"Don't fucking touch him!" Ezra threaned, jumped to his feet and ran into the mist. His hands flung around but couldn't touch anything solid.

When the mist cleared out, Cole appeared unconscious. Ezra's blood dried in his body.

He took his friend in his arms once again and gripped onto him tightly before running towards their team waiting at the outskirts of the forest.

The warriors were rendered speechless and stunned when suddenly all the remaining rogues froze and dropped dead.

Lily steered in the broken bed, her head hammering and throbbing in agony. She whimpered and clutched her head to stop the assault.

Groaning, she pulled herself up against the headboard and blinked furiously to gain her vision back. Her blurry eyes could only make out the outline of furniture.

"Where–" her voice broke off when her throat stung.

She worked on her swallow painfully hard and sucked in short breaths. Her palms were sweating profusely.

Her mind wasn't fully awake yet when her nose recognized the thick scent of her mate. Her pulse rate skyrocketed as her eyes became frantic, jumping from left to right.

How did I come here? She panicked and slid out of bed only to stumble and trip.

The impact yanked a shirke out of her. Her core was sore, her thighs ached and her muscles were stiff. The unmistakable stickiness inside her and the slowburn outside left no doubt in her mind.

Like she burned, she scrambled back and bumped into the nightstand. A letter landed her hand, startling her. She flicked it away as her eyes welled up and dread choked up her throat.

"No," she croaked, "No, it... I–" her breath hitched.

Why? How?

Lily's mind went into a frenzy. Her memories were blank. There was no hint of how she ended up in that room. Her gut knotted forcefully tight.

Terrified, Lily almost flew across the room and choked on her breaths. Her hands were trembling, heart ready to burst and legs pleading to stop. With each step, her core burned and ached like opened wounds but she didn't stop. Her eyes flickered for a way out. She felt suffocated.

The guards jumped when she crashed out of the front door and rushed away from the house. The guards yelled for her to stop. It only fueled her terror. She couldn't think straight.

Damn straight, she couldn't feel if her mind was still there. Small rocks in the path hurt her naked feet. Lily wasn't aware of her lack of clothing or she would've been mortified. Fortunate for her, the shirt stopped at her thighs.

"Miss, stop!"

The guards pleaded. They weren't allowed to touch her or look at her.

"Please stop, mam. You're going to hurt yourself."

The early birds on the streets stopped and stared with mouths hanging open as Lily slapped her hand over her mouth to kill her sobs. The painful journey ended with her running inside Kandra's house and locking the door.

Her back hit the wood and sank down until she was kneeling on the floor. Her skull stung, memories peirced it as they rushed in.

The heat. Zeke. Her sultry behavior. Her willing submission. Their hands on her body. Their sneers and mocking. Her face heated up when she recalled gushing for her mate. Fuck me she had said. Petrified, she gripped her hair.

"I want to suck your... penis."
"My Lillian is not going to kneel and suck dicks. She's going to sit and demand."

All her mad session of sex replayed in her head, humiliating her in her own eyes. Her heart shrunk in her chest. How could she let that happen?

"Goddess, no. Please no." She kept chanting absently as her feet took her to Cindy's room.

She almost flipped the entire furniture untill she found what she could comprehend in her stupor. Jerking open the drawers in the dresser, she dug out bottles of pills and scanned the backs of each with shaking hands.

"This isn't happening," her voice shook. "He can't...!"

She uncapped the bottle and chugged a handful of morning after pills in her palm. A few fell off her hand, her hand was in no state to hold the rest. By the time, she swallowed, only three made it to her stomach.

The fire of frenzy exhausted slowly, chipping away her dignity. Tears of guilt and regret colored her cheeks as she curled up beside the bed and rocked herself to numbness.

I sit, write and hit send. Nothing is pre-planned.

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