When the hunter becomes the hunted, a dangerous love will ensnare them all.
Raia is on the hunt, and she never misses a target. No matter how big he–or they–might be.
Arghet doesn’t know what to make of the new addition to the clan. Skehl is huge, an indomitable warrior with a beserker’s power. But he was once an enemy. Somehow, Arghet is tasked with looking after him. Arghet’s a Vyctore warrior. He has more important things to do than babysit, like trying to track down the strange female who stole his kill. Oddly, she and Skehl bear the same tribal marker on their faces.
But when Arghet finally finds her, he learns he’s no longer the hunter but the hunted. And that Skehl is much more than the quiet, subdued warrior he once seemed…
A M/M/F bisexual, menage romance.
A day later, he found the village bustling with activity. The Vyctore talked about nothing but the upcoming tribal competition, packing wares for trade and praising those selected to accompany their alpha to the Cloud Games, a festival of strength held every other year, where the Cloud Tribe’s warriors would compete for victory. Challenges of power, skill, and accuracy pitted clan against clan for a shot at prestige and glory.
They’d emerged victorious at the last games, and Arghet was honored to be among those chosen to represent the Vyctore once more. He passed by many a warrior, all of them clad in the xechelln pelts which protected them from offworlder tech, the hide both soft yet durable and impervious to phasers. Like Arghet, the warriors were mostly dark-haired and tanned. The skin markers on their chest and arms flashed according to emotional response, like on the warriors grappling by the water barrels. And there, on the couple discreetly pairing in a thicket by the weapon hut. The female knelt between the warrior’s feet as she pleasured him, and Arghet grinned, seeing Vyctore life at its finest.
In the center of the bustling village stood Talzec, his alpha, and the fiercest, largest warrior they had. A male filled with integrity, fairness, and a generosity of spirit who kept his clan healthy and lush with riches. Now mated to his beta, Xav, and a human female with battle power, the triad strengthened the Vyctore considerably.
Talzec saw him and waved him over.
After discussing the upcoming games, their security measures, and Arghet’s latest failure to find his prey, Talzec let slip a worrisome notion.
Skehl would accompany them to the games.
“Your warrior will compete in the strength test this year. Time I let someone else take my place,” Talzec said with a wry smile. “I’m sure I’ll be busy keeping my female out of trouble.”
That had a ring of truth. Skye was the only female warrior in the Cloud Tribe that Arghet knew of. He still didn’t think her warring nature suited the clan, but he deferred to his alpha and beta. Both mates acknowledged Skye’s skills without question.
Then what Talzec said penetrated.
“Since when is Skehl my warrior?” Arghet asked.
Talzec shrugged. “He seems most comfortable with you and Lore. But with Mandy breeding, Lore and Zehn will remain here, in the village.”
Arghet swore. Lore and Zehn were two powerful warriors he’d liked to have taken to represent the clan. But Skehl… “What am I to do with him?” They both turned to see Skehl sitting on a stump by one of the females. He held a skein of maffet leaf wool while she manipulated it into some form of garment. “He does little unless asked. He barely speaks. And when he does, it’s usually in one word answers. The only thing he’s good for is training, and that’s only when he feels like it.” Or when Arghet tasked him to battle. Skehl had a tendency to ignore the other warriors, which didn’t put him in their good stead.
Then there was the matter of the male’s facial marker, what Skye called a tattoo. It was much like the one sported by the female who’d stolen Arghet’s kill.
The treacherous female refused to leave his mind’s eye. Long black hair, purple eyes, and full lips complemented a face many would consider beautiful. Hell, he considered her striking. That she’d moved liked a warrior and wielded a blade had both captivated and angered him. She’d moved with grace and skill, then stolen his victory. Yet for all her barbarian airs, she hadn’t worn a loincloth or breast sash. She’d had on offworlder gear—black trousers and a black shirt and boots.
The marker under her left eye had blazed red while she’d stared at him, the same way Skehl’s had a tendency to glow when the big bastard watched Arghet.
It meant something. He knew it. But he was hesitant to mention it to Talzec, and he didn’t understand his reticence.
“Help our new clanmate, Arghet. Skehl was raised as part of the Nasuhl clan, though he’s clearly not Nasuhl-born. His life cannot have been an easy one.” Talzec knew that of which he spoke. His first mate had been Nasuhl, an abused female who should have been treasured by her alpha—her own brother. Instead, he’d tried to mate with her, then killed her.
Talzec had avenged her in a brutally efficient way, finally destroying the entire enemy clan.
Arghet respected his alpha, comfortable to serve a leader with so much power. Phelthar—the energy that connected a warrior to the life all around him, to the planet itself, was strong in Talzec. There could be no mistaking the Maker’s pleasure with such a great leader.
Because of this, Arghet would handle his misgivings about Skehl and the female. And he’d watch the giant closely.
At that moment, Skehl shifted his attention to Arghet and simply stared.
You do anything to harm my clan, and I’ll take your head from your neck, then carve you into pieces.
The marker on Skehl’s face glowed red. He gave no sign of interest before looking back at the maffet wool in his hands.
“Yes,” Talzec murmured, looking from Skehl to Arghet. “I think you’re exactly the warrior I need to keep our newest clanmate in line.”