Chapter |1| The Mate Of My Nightmares
Red gleaming orbs, watching me with such a morbid fascination that I couldn't help but stare back.
That was what I saw in my dreams. In my nightmares.
Those were the exact picture that stalked me through my sleep, and into the bright youthful morning glow. I thought nothing much of it. I had always had, weird strange dreams that I sometimes believed to be premonitions of the future.
However this...was not just a premonition, this was truth.
I stayed content, submerged in the thick veil of smoky darkness that engulfed me. I didn't know how long I had been here, didn't remember how I ended up in this void. Yet, here I was.
Floating. Free of life, of worry and problems and stress.
Then I felt it. A sort of dampness, a lick of vast cold that was enough to pull the dark away. Suddenly, the fog was clearing up. Light was piercing through, blinding me with its harshness.
I clung tightly to the darkness, hoping it would take me away with it. I wasn't ready yet, I wanted more time here. By myself.
"It's time." That tiny voice inside my head whispered. "It's finally time to meet him." My wolf howled, and I shook my head ferociously.
She may have been ready to yield to her gift from the moon, but I would bow down to the vicious king. I would never submit to my mate.
"Lola! Lola! Darling, please wake up! Lola," My mother's desperate pleas wrenched me back into reality.
I shot up, coughing harshly with such force that my entire body stung. I felt her hand on my back, rubbing it and soothing me. Felt the cold wetness seeping out from the rag still pressed against my forehead.
My body was smooshed into one side of the musty old couch, my dad refused to throw out, my legs thrown over the side. A scent drifted into the room. It was masterful, delicate, intoxicating.
I found my eyes drifting rapidly around the room, searching for the source. They settled on a man, a towering giant that almost stood at seven foot.
His hair was mused in dark raven tousles and his lips were pouted, with his fragmented amber eyes omitting a sort of smouldering intensity I couldn't shy away from. A jagged scar ran down the length of his cheek and yet did nothing to destroy the imbalance of his ragged handsomeness and perfect nature of his beauty. The scar invoked a strange sense of involuntary anger inside of me.
"Lols," A familiar face rushed into my view. Adam, my boyfriend, was now sporting an ugly bruise under his left eye, his lips swollen and crusted with blood.
Normally, he was a sight to be graced with. Naturally blessed with thick blond hair that fell to his shoulders and baby blue eyes that made your heart clench. However, now, he looked more like the walking dead than anything else.
Taking my hand, he squeezed it. "Baby, are you okay?"
Before I could reply, a snarl ripped through the air. One I had most definitely heard before. I found myself once again drawn to the giant, who eyes gleamed bright red.
Oh fuck. I felt my heart kick into overdrive.
It was him. My stalker from my dreams, the monster in my nightmares, the man who caused my plunge into the darkness.
On instinct, I curled up in a ball and shuffled as far away as I could from him. Adam's hand dropped from mine, and he turned to face the giant with a seemingly threatening stare.
"You're scaring her." He snarled.
The giant's eyes turned pitch black and then back to amber. Something that resembled hurt, morphed over his face. He stepped back into the corner her inhabited and stared down at the floor, ashamed.
My wolf whined inside of me, desperately reaching out to him. Suddenly I remembered what had preceded my fainting, what had caused my plunge into the dark.
"Mate." He growled, causing the trees to shake before him as he stared directly at me. His red eyes were piercing my soul and then suddenly everything turned black.
"Lola," I turned at the sound of my mother's voice, the past memory diminishing into nothing. Her hand set itself on my lap and she smiled, though it didn't quite reach her hazel brown eyes. "That man is your mate. Lucien Rossi, hybrid King of the vampires and werewolves."
No. No, no, no, no, no. Not even the moon is this cruel to have paired me with this...with this...monster.
He was a killer. I had heard the stories, everyone had. The way he brutally tore apart an Alpha for just looking in his direction the wrong way, the way he killed an innocent woman to torture her mate, the way he pillaged villages and small packs that refused to comply with his demands. The way he hated witches.
Oh god...he hated witches. Fuck, fuck.
My wolf was silent now. Despite feeling the pull of the bond, I knew she feared losing her counter part more. The other part of me. The part that caused people to quake in my presence, the part that I fought so long to hide.
My witch side. I was born half witch, half werewolf. I guess in some ways, that made me a hybrid too.
I glanced up at him, and found his eyes pinned on me. Assessing my panicked and wary expression, although there was slight frustration lingering beneath his tyrannical front, there was no hatred. No sign of murderous revenge.
I calmed my breathing down, focusing on exhaling deep long breaths. My mother seemed to know what I was thinking and I could tell from the slight crease of her forehead that she was worried too.
"Can I have a moment alone with my mate?" He bit the words out, more of a demand than a request.
Adam started towards hime. "Absolutely fucking not!"
"Adam!" My voice carried across the room. Lucien's blistering red eyes dimmed, flickering back to amber. His facial features softened at the sound of my voice.
I was glad to know I wasn't the only one succumbing to the sappy nature of the mate bond.
"Adam, please can you give us a minute?" He tried to argue. "Alone. Please, it's just a minute."
"Fine." He snapped, sending Lucien a less than threatening stare, before storming out.
"Baby, are you sure?" My mum whispered. Lucien refrained his growl, respecting the fact that she was my mother. For some reason, that made me smile internally.
"It's just a talk. I'll be fine." The room fell into an ominous silenced as she placed a tentative kiss onto my forehead and silently left the room. The harsh clock of the door closing, set me back another minute,
This was my mate. Not just a King, or a killer, or a witch hater, but my mate. We were destined to become fated souls and yet, I felt hesitant. I felt scared, panicked, alone.
Lucien stepped forward, causing me to still. He lingered in his next steps, debating whether or not to proceed. He stepped back instead.
"You're afraid of me." Again, a statement.
Glancing up, I caught his amber glazed eyes. "Can you blame me?" A mirthless chuckle left his throat.
"I don't suppose I can. Everyone is afraid of me." My wolf whined, desperately seeking to comfort our mate.
"That sounds very lonely." He seemed taken aback by my answer, like he was expecting some sort of agreement or hated spew. "I'm sorry about...before. Being afraid, that's not necessarily in my vocabulary and I was judging you based on the King aspect. Not the fact that you're Lucien Rossi." Although that was quite daunting.
I could saw the shadow of smile cross his face. His eyes narrowing slowly, as his lips tilted up, and I couldn't help but smile back.
"You're beautiful." He blurted out suddenly.
I laughed as a red sheen covered my cheeks. "Thank you. So are you." I blushed harder as he smile grew. A comfortable moment of silence settled in.
Maybe he wasn't that bad? I had heard the stories, the rumours. From my brother's, I knew the possessive nature of the mate bond, and I thought Lucien would be ever worse but, if anything he seemed calm. Relaxed.
"Your name is Lola?"
"Willow." I corrected, even though I hated my real name. "My birth name is Willow but everyone calls me Lola."
"Well, I like them both. Lola Rossi fits quite well." I choked, my eyes growing into wide saucers at the prospect of marriage.
The door suddenly burst open, splintering at the hinges and Adam came storming in. My mother rushed in behind him, her eyes sending me an apologetic look.
"That's enough now. Baby, let's go." Adam's hand clasped around my wrist.
A feral growl ripped through the air, and o watched as Lucien hauled Adam back by the collar. Adam flew back, slamming into the wall.
"Oh shit!" I clasped my hands over my mouth, as rushed over to him.
His forehead was sporting a nasty gnash, his eyes watery from the fall, and he clung onto my arms like his life was depending on it. I glanced back warily at Lucien. His eyes were no longer the fascinating amber had grown to like, instead the vicious red had taken over him and began to storm over to us.
"Lucien no!" I placed my hand out and he stilled. I noticed his ragged breathing, puffed out chest, sharp canines extended and wondered how the hell he was managing to control his wolf like this?
We stared at each other for a silent moment, gaze unwavering, and displaying a sort of powerful intensifying I dared not to disrupt.
"What the hell is going on in here?" I quickly broke away from him and looked back at the doorway. My father stood with his canines and claws on full display.
He assessed the situation, noticed the look of sheer panic on my face and opened up his arms. Immediately, I fell into them, entrapping myself in the warm familiar hold.
Somehow I wanted this nightmare to be end and continue. I wanted Lucien to forever be the man who haunts my dreams, but I wanted the fighting, the violence, the prospect of my mate hating my kind to disappear.
"She's mine pup." Lucien growled with a vicious fuelling.
Adam had no choice but to whimper, curling back against the wall in face of a powerful alpha and King. "No she's not." He managed to bark out, but his words barely carried across the room.
"Enough!" My father bellowed. His eyes sternly fell upon my mate.
"You're in my house King Lucien, you wish to speak with my daughter as your mate and that is your right. However, it is also hers too. Adam, leave."
"Leave!" My father's voice erupted into a shattering awe. I flashed Adam an apologetic look, before he scampered out. My mother shut the door as best as she could, and turned to face us with her arms crossed.
She sighed. "This was my favourite room."
Lucien immediately stepped forward. "I'm so sorry. I'll pay for everything I promise."
"That's very kind, however I'm more concerned about what you believe is going to happen next."
"She'll leave with me tonight." He stated calmly.
What the fuck? "My daughter isn't going away." I praised my father silently, wincing as Lucien's deep growl sliced through the air. My father stayed unaffected. "The two of you have just met, not to mention my daughter has fainted. She needs rest and time."
"Is that what you need?" My head turned to Lucien, realising he was addressing me. "Time? Because you're my mate Lola. We were destined to be each other's other half's and my people need their Luna and Queen."
"Queen?" He sent me a bewildered look but the prospect of me being anyone's Queen was really just ridiculous. I mean, I was envisioning tiaras, crowns, ball gowns, heels. I couldn't be a Queen.
Hell I was 19 years old. I had a life to live, places to visit, people to meet. I always imagined myself tracking the Andes mountains, and accidentally bumping into some hot hiker who would offer to buy me a drink afterwards. We would hike together, drink, have hot sex and then suddenly I would realise he was the one. Not my mate, the one, and we would go on to get married and have bunch of adorable kids. My life would be trouble free.
Lucien sent me a sharp glare, his eyes narrowly assessing me as though he knew exactly what I was thinking. "I'm King, it's natural for my mate to be Queen." After a silent moment of pause, he nodded curtly to himself. "Five days. Myself, my beta and my men will require rooms..."
"Rooms?" I don't why I blurted that out. I guessed my mind was still reeling from the revelation that I could be a Queen.
"Yes rooms." He smirked wickedly. "Unless you would rather I share with you." I gaped at him openly, a red tint shadowing my cheek.
My dad released a protective growl. "Absolutely not." No boys in my room had a been a strict rule ever since I brought Adam home once to meet my parents. It had never affected me before because I never had that burning desire to take Adam up to my room and yet, with Lucien there was more.
One seething look, even his masculine low growls ignited some sort of fiery passion deep inside of me. Something I yearned to explore.
"I'll go inform them others." Lucien said causally ignoring my dad. He turned back around and flashed me a winked. "Remember five days."
How could I forget? In five days, I would be forced to say goodbye to the only life I've ever known and leave my mate, the King of Vampires and Werwolves. What the hell could go wrong?