Tempting Darkness - Series
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Tempting Darkness Darkness Series Book 1 Nothing in our world is humane and normal. Especially not my mates. First, they killed my parents. So, I did the most rational thing at the time. I ran. Hard and fast without ever looking back. But you can't run from the factions of the Fae, especially not them. Fae were the most powerful creatures in the world, as long as we had magic and our mate. Turns out I have not one mate but four. Not one of my four mates was a good option, each one as brutal and cruel as the other. Darius was a Demonic-Fae, Tobias Vampiric-Fae, then there is Lycus, he is a Were-Fae, and let's not forget Kalen, Pure and devastatingly all Dark-Fae. They were all as cruel and brutal as each other and wanted to destroy me. Now, I find myself at a crossroads, as I am being hunted by werewolves in an unfamiliar city, and I had to weigh up my options, both unappealing. However, Low on magic and backed into a corner where I feel like I've got nothing left to lose but my life, I decided to run to the very men I spent six years running from. I do the unthinkable. I send out a flare of my magic, an SOS, to the very men I hide from. It doesn’t take long before I realize some things are worse than death. Like being forced into a bond with the men who had ruined my life. The men who wanted to destroy me, to claim me, to keep me. There was just one thing that they had forgotten. I was part of the darkness, too. And if they want to tempt darkness, they will eventually taste it, and nothing tastes sweeter than revenge. Hello Lovely Readers This book may contain content some readers may find triggering. It is a dark paranormal romance, and the four main male leads are brutal toward the female lead. Some may have noticed I said four Male leads. As most of my readers know, I primarily write reverse harem romances, meaning one woman with multiple love interests. No, she doesn’t have to choose between them—a list of some triggers you may find in the book below. Degradation, Blood Play, Abuse, Dub-con, torture. Non-con, Humiliation. This is a dark Fae-Creatures book loosely using the term Fae as there are different variants of Fae. However, Dark Fae is not your average Tinkerbell. There is no sprinkling of pixie dust, unicorn farts, or spreading the skies in rainbows. My characters are darker and crueler, with no limits. So if you are unfamiliar with Dark Paranormal Romance and Reverse Harem, or even slightly confused still, I suggest you give old google a search. If you're okay with the dark stuff and wish to continue reading, well, jump right in for a stomach-dropping, intense ride, and I will see your lovely dark souls on the other side.
Something feels off this morning. I didn’t know what, but something is definitely off as I glance around the crowded room. Leering eyes watch me from where I sit alone in the mess hall. My usual spot is taken, preferring to be closest to the exit, where I remain mostly unnoticed. Closer to the door is safest because it gives me an escape route, which I don’t have here.
Their sleazy gazes have me on edge as they watch me hungrily. I hated this place. There were no other women here. I hated everything about it here, but most of all, I hated being the subject they loved to torment. All made worse by the fact that I am powerless to stop them.
In a room full of men, I stick out like a sore thumb, so I do my best to keep to myself. The surrounding chatter quiets down and makes me quickly glance around nervously. A gasp escapes me as they enter. I duck my head when I notice them. Darius entered the room with my other three mates.
They walk to the back of the room and take seats at the back, which I think is a little odd; I rarely saw them here. But it appears they have something to talk about with their recruits because Darius stands up; he speaks about some crap I show no interest in knowing or concerns me, so I try my best to ignore his voice. Instead, I keep my head down and focus on eating quickly, wanting nothing more than to get the hell out of here.
However, the moment I stood up and went to chuck my rubbish in the bin, my muscles spasmed, my feet faltered as I tried to take a step away from the table, and my entire body locked up with one command.
“Aleera, freeze,” came a voice. I recognized the voice instantly and dreaded what he would do this time.
My entire body stopped at the command. I couldn’t move an inch, and everyone erupted with laughter. Oh, how I tried, but I couldn’t so much as wiggle a toe. What were these savage men going to subject me to this time? They never usually went this far. Usually, they tormented me, chased me, and hurt me. However, this was the first time they used compulsion on me, and it felt wrong as every muscle in my body tensed.
My eyes went to my mates at the back. Darius, Tobias, and Lycus watched from the far table. They were always happy to witness my suffering. Kalen, however, glanced around the room before he looked at me and dropped his head.
My stomach dropped when Zac, one of the recruits under Darius’s thumb, got up from his seat. My lungs constricted at the cruel smirk plastered on his face. Zac sauntered over before he stopped in front of me. His eyes hungrily looked me over from head to toe. Zac was the worst of all the recruits I had encountered here. The vile bastard had no boundaries. He was usually behind my worst degradation. I watched as he walked around me slowly and plucked the sandwich wrapper from my fingers while I remained unmoving.
“Stand up straight,” he ordered, and I gritted my teeth. My forced body was doing as commanded as Zac’s cold magic caressed me. A violent shudder ran through me in repulsion as I tried to fight against the command, but it was pointless. I was a puppet on strings, and he was the puppet master.
“Nothing to say, Aleera?” he chuckled, and the entire room erupted with laughter. Except for my mates, who watched from the back with expressionless faces.
“Nothing I say will stop you. Did you want me to beg? Beg for you not to do whatever vile thing it is you intend to do?” I spat at him.
Being trapped in this place, I learned quickly not to beg. It just made the torment worse when I did. They didn’t care that I was female; they didn’t care I was powerless. All they cared about was the control they had over me.
“You’re right. It wouldn’t stop me. The guys and I want you to put on a little show for us,” Zac said in an amused tone. I glanced around the room to find the men were all leaning forward eagerly; one even winked at me while another licked his lips.
My eyes darted to the table where my mates sat. Not a scrap of emotion was shown on their faces for what I was about to endure. They would not help me, not that I expected them to. They never did. If only they had just told them who I was to them; if only their soldiers knew. I wouldn’t have to deal with this shit daily. However, I knew they would deny it if I spoke up. Darius had threatened to kill me if I told anyone here who I was to them. So I kept my mouth shut. They hated me, and the feeling was mutual. Yet, I couldn’t bear to see them hurt, so how could they watch my humiliation with no expression at all?
My eyes went back to Zac, who looked me up and down. Was he going to make me dance? What did he mean by a show? I was already on display. How much worse could it get?
“You could always say no?” Zac teased before he scoffed. “Oh, that’s right, you can’t. Poor helpless Aleera, always so easily influenced, so easily overpowered. Must truly suck being the weakest form of fae,” he mocked. His demonic eyes ran the length of me in a sleazy, obscene way. His gaze stopped at my breasts, and I felt my stomach drop somewhere deep and cold within me. I knew what he was going to say before he said it. I prayed I was mistaken, but his following words confirmed my thoughts.
“Strip, Aleera,” Zac said, his voice coming out like a purr. I blinked at him, trying to fight his compulsion with everything in me, even though I knew it was pointless. My eyes burned as tears threatened to spill, and my hands shook as I tried to resist doing what he asked.
“All of it. I want to see you completely bare.” My fingers forcibly undid the buttons on my black blouse. My breathing became harsher as I tried to resist his compulsion. A sob tore from my lips that sounded more like a whimper. My vision blurred as my top fell open and revealed my black bra. Zac gripped my shirt and yanked it, my shirt tearing painfully from my body under the force he used. My scars were on display for everyone to see. The worst was the burn from my shoulder to my hip.
The men watching hollered and whistled; some even poked fun at my burned, scar-ravaged skin. Was this high school? Were they truly this immature? They were fully grown men, and they were all subjecting me to this. Worst of all, my mates just watched. Although, I noticed Kalen looked away when my eyes fell on him; he almost appeared to look guilty like he wanted to step in and stop it. My fingers were still working to undo the buttons and the zip on my black slacks. My eyes stung from the tears that brimmed and spilled over as I bent over to remove my pants.
“Please stop,” I choked out as I stood upright. How could they all be so cruel?
“All of it,” Zac commanded again.
My entire body shook at his command, my cheeks burned with humiliation, tears ran down my cheeks and dripped off my chin, and I could hear them all talking and laughing.
My bottom lip trembled as my hands reached behind my back and fumbled with the clasp of my bra. A hiccupped sob left me as it unclipped. I couldn’t handle it, so I clenched my eyes shut so I didn’t see their faces watching me. I hoped it was stuck, but, of course, it would come undone easily and expose me more.
Zac’s hand ran down my arm from my shoulder to my elbow as he pulled the strap of my bra down. My eyes flew open at his touch, his other hand moved to my hip, and I felt the bile rise in my throat. The feel of his hands on me disgusted me. I wondered how far he would take this. Looking over at my mates, Kalen got up and walked out along with Lycus. Darius and Tobias, however, were enjoying my torment.
“Hurry, Aleera, take it off, take it all off,” Zac purred as he tugged my bra strap off my other shoulder. I stared at Darius. Was this what he wanted? Was this still not humiliating enough? His eyes darkened when Zac ran his hand up my side before grabbing my breast roughly. He twisted my nipple painfully, making me cry out, and I felt more tears spill over as my bra fell away. The room erupted with whistles and vulgar taunts.
Darius and Tobias could stop this, and I pleaded with my eyes for them to step in, just this once, and not subject me to this. My hands shook violently as they reached for my panties. It is the last article of clothing I have left, the one place left that has remained untouched.
One month earlier,
Their heavy footfalls on the ground behind me are getting closer. I have been running through this godforsaken city for nearly two hours, trying to lose the wolves chasing me. Fae blood is addictive to werewolves, and the moment I stepped into this city, they welcomed me with this hunting party. There is nothing more welcoming than being given the opportunity to become a werewolf chew toy. Stupid mutts!
As I turn up yet another darkened street, I nearly lose my footing on the wet ground. I hear the howls in the distance as more join the chase. Shifters can smell a fae easily; they can even smell the power in my veins, even as weak as mine is right now. I knew I should never have tried to get into the city at night. But I was desperate and hadn’t eaten in four days. All was made worse by the fact that every water source outside the city I found is polluted.
This has turned out to be a mistake because now I am being hunted by werewolves and god knows what else through a city with which I am unfamiliar. This is not part of the plan.
How was I supposed to know that it was a shifter city? It isn’t like they have a huge-ass neon sign at the city limits saying “Shifters Only.” However, it certainly explains the stench of wet dogs!
The light coming from the full moon lights my way. While helpful, it is also the worst time to be in a werewolf city surrounded by savage beasts that love nothing but the chase and killing for sport.
Running past some garbage bins, I twist my wrist, letting my magic flow from my fingertips. It explodes, sending rubbish everywhere, hoping to slow them down. Puddles splash my legs, and my clothes are drenched, making running harder. Technically, since we are all fae, you would think we would get along just fine. Nope, were-fae are savages, and my scrawny ass is about to be dinner.
Ninety percent of the world is dark fae. A plague killed off all the white fae, leaving only their dark brethren and variants like these were-fae that are hunting me. So, let’s just call them werewolves. It’s easier to remember and essentially what they are. Most of us tend to stick with our own kind, but mine no longer exists. I am the last of my species, a unique blend of fae that have been gone for years. Magic is inherent in all fae, and some, like myself, have the potential to possess enormous power.
My mother was a white fae. She should have died, but my father was a dark fae, and when the plague hit, her entire bloodline died out except for her. Dad said it was because she was pregnant with me, and I became the last harmony fae in existence. I am the Light and the Dark, the last of my kind. I am the ultimate weapon when fully powered. However, when our magic runs out, we are essentially human.
I can hear the snarling beasts as they chase me down, getting closer with each step while I get weaker. Plus, I have a stitch and rolled my damn ankle two streets over. I really need to up my cardio, which is funny, considering how long I have been on the run. You would think I would be used to the running part by now.
Growls tear out behind me, and I hear one knock something over as it gives chase. I feel its aura as it tries to gain on me, yet adrenaline keeps my feet moving despite wanting to pass out. I fight the urge to give in and accept my fate. My magic fizzles in my fingers as I search for another way to lose them. Yet there is no escape.
Unfortunately, these monsters aren’t the only thing I have been running from. I have spent the last six years on the run from my mates. I swore I would never be theirs and that I would get revenge on them one day. They burned my house with my parents trapped in it to the ground. Only recently did I realize why they’d spared me. Now I am actually considering calling on them for help.
The snarl that leaves one as he pounces has me instantly ducking. The wolf just misses, jumping clear over me, and slides across the ground. A shriek of fear leaves my lips at the motion as he smashes against the wall of a building. There is no way I can outrun these monsters chasing me. I don’t have enough power to save myself from being torn to pieces or, worse, taken back to their Alpha and subjected to unimaginable horrors for crossing into the wrong city.
I realize there’s only one way out of this. All I have to do is send a flare of magic to them, alert them to my location, and pray they will come and not ignore it as I have ignored their calls. With my magic running this low, I have no other choice.
They will come, that I am sure of. My mates need me to reach their ultimate power. As long as we have magic and our mate - as it turns out I’m cursed with not one but four- none of them is a good option. Unfortunately for me, to maintain power, I also need them.
Fae power is shared with their other mates. That is how we remain strong, and I am the link to all of them. I’m their keeper. Without me, they are powerless, or they’re supposed to be. Power keepers like me are the anchor, the only ones that can transfer their magic and mine, sharing it equally among mates. It is how we stay in power, the keeper constantly circling and recycling magic. Basically, I am their battery source.
My mates should have run out years ago, yet somehow they had found another way because they remain strong. Strong enough to still rule over the fae, strong enough that everyone feared their names.
Just when I think my luck can’t get any worse, the street turns out to be a dead-end. Slowing down, I glance at my options for escape, finding none, so I spin around, hoping for some miracle. There is no getaway. And it is at this moment that I realize they have herded me here. Fuck!
A growl shoves me into reality again, and I spin on my heel. Nine werewolves are closing in around me. Oops, make that ten. I don’t see the one on the roof drooling down its chest, wanting to munch on me like a damn chew toy. I am about to become chum dog food because I still couldn’t bring myself to let off a flare of my magic that would bring them to me. Neither option is appealing, but now is the time to decide. My life was doomed either way.
Cornered, the wolves circle around me, trying to get behind me to jump me, and I keep turning while trying to watch them all at once. Their silver eyes size me up, yellow teeth snapping in my direction. They seem to wait for me to attack, yet I have barely any magic to use in my defense. Certainly not enough to save me.
The wolf on the roof jumps down and lands behind me. With a thud, the wolf’s big, heavy paws land on the dumpster. Please, fates, don’t let me die! I want to live, not die a virgin, cold and hungry. Aren’t I supposed to get a last meal? If you’re going to kill me, at least feed me first. Seriously, if fate wanted to fuck me, at least do it gently, ease in, and would it kill them to add some damn lube?
My fingers twitch toward the mark with their four names branded into my skin. I will have to call on them, which feels like a low-frequency buzz over every inch of my body, making me want to go to my mates. I have ignored that buzzing feeling for six years, and now it feels more like an itch. One I just can’t reach to scratch.
A growl behind me makes me jump, and I watch my entire life flash before my eyes in that split second as they close in.
Lifting my hand, I place it over the markings and send a spark of my magic into it. Each of us has the same markings. Yet they only appear when our powers manifest. My wrist burns painfully, making me scream and clench my teeth. The sheer agony in my voice makes the wolves back off, clearly wondering what has gotten into me.
The mate symbol glows red and throbs. I know it only hurts like this because I waited so long to answer their call for me.
The world around me spins violently, and the force knocks me to the ground. Both my hands and knees are driven into the road painfully. My power has become too low. A few more minutes, and it will fade out entirely.
Teeth bared and snarling; a big black one rushes at me. I close my eyes and wait for my death. The surrounding air ripples, and the turbulent noise makes me cover my ears. I recognize the whooshing sound of a portal opening up. Keeping my head down, I open my eyes and focus on breathing.
Four sets of feet hit the ground around me, and the colored light of their magic is suddenly all I can see. It swallows my vision. Their closeness makes my reserves shudder, and I have to stamp down the urge to pull on it before they realize it. Flames miss me by millimeters, the heat so hot, I cry out when it burns the flesh on my arms as it rushes past me.
When the howls and whimpers stop, everything falls silent except for the sound of my heart pounding in my ears. Their domineering auras surround me threateningly as they take up each side of me and make me want to flinch away.
Can I take it back? I choose death. I choose fucking death fates. Nothing good would come out of me calling on them. The angry ripple of energy surrounding me tells me they were more than livid, and these men are not the ones you wanted to anger.
Paralyzed by fear, I remain frozen until the thud of boots stops next to me. I clench my hands into fists to prevent them from trembling. They step closer, caging me in with their legs, making me feel tiny where I am sitting at their feet.
They could kill me, and I feel like they genuinely want to crush me like a bug beneath their shoes. Never in my entire life have I felt so small until I have their scrutinizing gazes looking down on me.
“Six years, Aleera. Six fucking years, and you have the guts to ask for our help? We should have let them fucking kill you.” one of them yells at me, making me flinch.
“Have you even got magic left? Because I can’t feel it,” he continues to scream at me.
My entire body shakes; I have feared no one more than my mates. I know who they are and what they have done. Now, I am second-guessing my decision to call them. Maybe I should have stuck with the savage beasts that now lay dead around us.
One of them yanks my hair, causing my head to rip back and forcing me to stare into the eyes of the one I fear most. Darius Wraith. His name is constantly in the media; nobody in the world fears anyone more than they do Darius Wraith.
And to think this monster is one of
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