[Siren Classic ManLove: Alternative, Paranormal, Vampires/Werewolves, MM, HEA]
Phelan is a wolf shifter and a prince of his kin. All of his life, he's been taught to believe in the superiority of his people. But when the shifters' dismissive cruelty toward humans draws the eye of a mysterious witch, it is Phelan who becomes the target. Now cursed, Phelan is forever bound to his animal form, while being the only one of his people to maintain his sense of self. The only way to break the enchantment is to find a human to love him. But who could have that kind of affection for a wretched, broken beast?
It seems like a lost cause, until one terrible winter, he meets beautiful and kind Elian. Elian brings warmth once more in Phelan's heart. His gentle fingers tend to Phelan's wounds, and his soft voice soothes Phelan's soul. Phelan soon realizes Elian is his mate. But can this love surpass all the obstacles in its path, or will it be cursed like the rest of Phelan's kin?
NOTE: This book was previously self-published by the author as Mate of the Cursed Wolf Prince.
Elian slowly got up and scanned the barn, paying close attention to the details he’d ignored coming in. “Hello? Is anyone here?”
He stepped forward carefully, wondering if some sort of animal could have dragged itself into the barn to get away from the storm. It was unlikely—shifters didn’t come close to villages, and regular animals shied away from lands inhabited by shifter packs. A human, then? If so, he or she might need Elian’s help.
No answer came from the darkness, so Elian braced himself and ventured deeper into the shadows. What he found shook him to the core.
There was a large wolf lying in the corner of the barn, a pool of blood congealing underneath it. Its gray fur was matted and dirty, and it was so thin Elian could see its ribs. Still, its chest was rising and falling, so it was still alive.
Elian couldn’t have said what made him act as he did. By rights, he should have fled and gone to get someone. A regular wolf couldn’t survive the type of injury this animal had, which meant the beast had to be a shifter. The idea that a shifter had entered the village was terrifying, to say the least.
And yet, Elian didn’t go. He approached the wolf with steady but cautious steps. For the moment, it seemed unconscious, but that didn’t mean it wasn’t dangerous. A wounded animal was always a serious threat.
When the beast didn’t move as Elian approached, he dared to kneel next to it. Slowly, he reached out and touched the wolf’s fur. That finally drew a reaction, and the shifter opened its eyes, fixing Elian with a pained, but surreally beautiful gaze.
Elian expected the wolf to jerk away or react poorly, but no such thing happened. It just released a low whine, twitching slightly, almost as if it was trying to get closer to Elian. Unfortunately, the action had the side effect of making the wolf bleed worse.
Suffice to say, that wasn’t good. For a reason Elian couldn’t quite identify, the shifter’s potential death terrified him. “It’s okay. Hush. Nothing is going to happen to you. You’re among friends.”
That was, naturally, a lie, and the shifter seemed to be aware of it. It—no, he, since the wolf was obviously male—snorted and nudged Elian’s hand with his snout. The twinkle in his eye suggested that he almost seemed amused by Elian’s poor attempt to comfort him.
“Okay, so you probably won’t win any popularity contests,” he admitted, “but I want to help.”
The wolf licked his hand, and it occurred to Elian that the creature seemed to understand him. But that couldn’t be right, could it? The shifters had lost that skill a long time ago.
Elian had been only a child when the shifter kingdoms had fallen. He remembered times had been hard before that, with shifters always treating them poorly for no reason whatsoever. The madness that had unexpectedly befallen their former leaders had come as a blessing and a relief, especially when it became obvious that it somehow meant they couldn’t harm humans either. Many had taken advantage of it and gone on hunts, bringing back trophies, luxurious pelts, claws and fangs that were turned into jewelry.
Knowing the shifters would have had to be alive to be skinned and declawed like that, his father had been against such carnage. And it had been a human, not a shifter who had killed him—because he’d been deemed a traitor.
One thing had stuck with Elian throughout all this. Shifters no longer had the ability to reason, not like they did before. So what did that mean for the wolf in front of him?
“Can you understand me?” he asked softly.
The wolf nodded, although it seemed to take all the strength he had left in his weak, battered body. Elian decided that figuring things out could wait. “Stay here and keep out of sight,” he said, petting the wolf’s flank. “I’m going to get you some medicine.”
Sensation exploded over him as Phelan suddenly moved far faster than Elian’s human senses could register. Elian took a breath, and almost as if by some sort of spell, his clothes were completely discarded and his skin was fully exposed to the air—or rather, to Phelan. He moved with such speed and zeal that Elian could barely feel any of the chill slightly permeating the air. And when Phelan’s hot mouth engulfed Elian’s throbbing member, Elian’s mind broke. Everything became instinct, and his body moved without him having to process, wonder or dwell on mental debates.
He buried his hands in Phelan’s hair, clinging to those strikingly silky locks and shoving his aching cock into the welcoming heat of Phelan’s wet cavern. Phelan growled around his shaft, the sound reminiscent of his lupine self and massaging Elian’s dick, sending shocks of pleasure all over his over-sensitive body. Phelan’s clawed hand landed on Elian’s hip, but he didn’t try to stop Elian from taking his pleasure. He was just there, almost reassuring, silently telling Elian it was all right to have this, to take, share and simply feel without any fear or lingering doubt. He bobbed his head up and down Elian’s cock, his throat opening up to take Elian’s cock as if he didn’t have a gag reflex like humans did.
It was all too good, impossibly so, but it also wasn’t what made Elian come. Going against Phelan’s earlier demand, Elian opened his eyes. The sight of his wolf’s blond head between his legs, lips obscenely stretched around the head of his prick—that was what triggered the unavoidable. Elian arched his back and found his peak in the strongest orgasm he’d ever experienced in his life. At the last moment, he covered his mouth with his hand, muffling the cry that escaped him. A good thing too, since he didn’t think his parents would have been happy at finding him in bed with a man they didn’t know—or any man at all.
His wolf drank down every drop of his offering, prolonging his climax, making hints of almost painful pleasure swell over him and sweep through his still aroused body. He licked Elian clean, and each of the whimpers Elian couldn’t hold back seemed to encourage him.
“Naughty,” he said when he finally lifted his head. “I told you not to open your eyes.”
Elian gave his new lover a look of exhausted disbelief. If Phelan expected him to reply, or indeed, to regret anything that had happened in the past minutes, he had another thing coming.
Phelan snorted, having obviously guessed Elian’s less-than-reverential thoughts. “It seems as if I have to try harder to impress you, my beautiful mate. But never fear. I’ve only just started.”
“You don’t have to impress me,” Elian replied seconds before he registered what Phelan had called him. Mate.
Phelan just grinned at him like he knew something Elian didn’t. He reached for the nightstand, and Elian blushed when he realized the wolf could scent the vial of oil waiting there.
Phelan set the oil on the bed, but didn’t immediately put it to use. His cock already hardening again at the realization of what would follow, Elian spread his legs. He bent himself practically in half while wordlessly asking for what he wanted. He knew other positions might be easier for his first time, but he wanted it like this, face to face, so that he could watch Phelan’s eyes.
His lover—or perhaps, mate—didn’t question him. He supported Elian’s thighs on his shoulders and reached for the bottle of oil once more. He poured a generous amount of the liquid on his fingers and reached for Elian’s hole.
Elian’s body was still relaxed from his orgasm, but he still tensed slightly when he felt the digits against his opening. He trusted Phelan, but this was still very new to him.
Phelan shushed him with excruciating gentleness. “Relax,” he said again. “I’m here.”
Elian listened to Phelan’s voice, and he found it so very easy to obey. Once he stopped worrying about whether he could satisfy Phelan or not, his body yielded easily to his mate. One finger slid inside him, the touch both astonishingly intimate and sweetly patient. Soon, Elian couldn’t get enough of it, the delicious burn a promise only Phelan could fulfill.
The first digit was followed by a second, and then Phelan was stretching him, preparing him for what they both craved. He crooked his fingers inside Elian just so, and a burst of pleasure rushed over Elian, emanating from a hidden spot inside him. “Oh, gods... Phelan, please!”