The Prologue of Savage Seduction (a super advance preview)

And boy, do I mean super advance. Like, as in over a year super advanced. As in, I haven’t even finished writing the book advanced. But this poured out of me the other day and I receive so many emails asking about Peter Thomas, the detective brother from Savage Retribution, that I thought I’d share it with you. Savage Seduction is Peter’s story. It’s set in the Outback and sees our very-much human hero once again submerged in a wholly paranormal situation.

For those that have read the first two books of the Savage Australia trilogy, I hope this will make you excited. For those that have no bloody clue what I’m talking about, I have five words for you…werewolves and shapeshifters Down Under.

Oh, before you read…I need to point out this is raw and straight from my head. It’s utterly unedited so there’s mistakes and typos aplenty. But I think you’ll get the drift 😉

***

Prologue

Fraser Island, Australia.

Eleven months ago.

Krista stared hard at the empty length of beach stretching out before her, the white sand reflecting the midday sun with binding force. Still, she wouldn’t squint, no matter how much her eyes hurt. She couldn’t risk it.

He was close. Too close. She could feel him. Either working his way through the dense rainforest hugging the beach, or scurrying over the southern rocky outcrop jutting out of the lush growth into the surf like a craggy finger reaching for water.

She swung her gaze to the formation, her belly knotting. Wherever he was, he was too close to risk squinting. He was going to find them and then they all were—

“Krista.”

The voice, far weaker than it had been only a few minutes ago, rasped behind her and she willed her heart to stay even. She couldn’t turn around and look at the owner of that voice. It would undo her. And he was still coming. Closer.

Damn it, why can’t I feel where he is?

“Krista,” the voice rasped again, this time cracking on the end of her name. “Krista…I need…”

Whatever was needed was lost to a gurgling cough and the coppery sting of fresh blood tickled Krista’s nostrils. She drove her nails into her palms, stare fixed on the beach. She couldn’t turn. She knew what she would find and she couldn’t bear it.

“Krista…”

It was too much for her. Hear death or see it, either way she had to look at the man behind her.

Hoping to the spirits her brother still felt her desperation from his lookout high in the dunes, Krista turned.

The man lying on the sand gave her a wavering smile, the line of bright red blood dribbling from his nose a macabre moustache above his top lip. “I’m sorry, Krista,” he said, the words almost inaudible. “I kinda fucked up.”

Krista moved to him and crouched by his side, shaking her head. “No, you didn’t. I did.” She ran her fingertips over the seeping wound in his side, swallowing the lump in her throat. He had done this. The one chasing them. Cold anger spiked through her and she suppressed a low growl. As much as she wanted to, she couldn’t heal him. If she drew on her croi now, she’d do nothing but kill Lachlan Hanson quicker than the bullet in his body already was.

“I’ve loved you since I first saw you, Krista.” The confession slipped from Leonard in a hoarse whisper. “From that very second.”

Guilt flooded through Krista and she shook her head again, shifting in her crouch. “Stop it, Len.”

He coughed, blood painting his lips in tiny bubbles. “I know you don’t love me,” he went on, his gaze holding hers. “I know that’s not the way of the bonding.”

Krista frowned, fighting the tears stinging the back of her eyes. “Didn’t you hear me?” she whispered, forcing her words to sound firm. Forcing the waver from her voice. “I told you to stop it.”

“It doesn’t matter.” Leonard’s fingers squeezed hers, his grip weak, far weaker than she expected. He was slipping fast. She felt his soul readying to leave, just as she felt him approaching: a whisper and an itch. When one disappeared the other could claim her. Would claim her if she didn’t do something soon. Something she didn’t want to do.

“It’s never mattered,” Leonard rasped. “I only wish I’d been able to give you more.”

“Don’t,” Krista murmured, squeezing his fingers. “Don’t—”

“Wade will protect you until you find…” Leonard’s eyes fluttered closed. Fresh blood trickled from his nose, pooling above his top lip for a fraction of a heartbeat before dripping onto his bottom lip. He coughed—so much weaker this time—and licked the blood away with a tongue far too pale. “Wade will protect you but only…only if you go.” He opened his eyes and stared at her, his face etching in pain. Blood oozed from his nose in thick red streams, dark and clotted and glistening. “Now.”

She shook her head.

“Now, Krista,” Leonard repeated, the strength returning to his voice. And still, it was a harsh, broken sound. Still it told her what she already knew. He would soon be lost to her.

A soft vibration rippled through the sand beneath her and she turned, watching her brother sprint towards her on all fours. His tail was flat, his ears likewise. Another vibration tingled through Krista, this time when Wade shifted. She turned back to Leonard, not wanting to see her brother so exposed and naked in human form. So vulnerable. That he was forced to shift between forms without clothes to cover himself only heightened the surreal situation they were in. A situation because of her.

Wade’s hand touched her shoulder, gentle, but firm. “He’s in the rocks.” Disgust turned the words to a low snarl. “We’ll have to—”

“Go,” Leonard finished on a breath.

Krista shook her head again. The pit of her belly churned. She’d never lost a bonded mate this way. It was horrific. Excrutiating. “Get up, Lenny,” she ground out. “Get up.”

She felt Leonard’s soul waver, like a flame starved of oxygen, and with its fading strength she felt the bond between them loosen.

“Krista,” Wade’s fingers tightened on her shoulder. “There’s little I can do to stop him. Not while he has the XXXX.”

She shot her brother a quick look, his bruised, bloody face tearing her heart. So much pain, so much grief. All because of her. Curse the spirits.

“I can’t leave Leonard, Wade.” She turned back to the man dying on the sand. The bond between them prickled as it always did when she spoke her bonded mate’s name, but this time, it was cold. Like icy needles piercing her existence. “He will kill him.”

“I’m already dead, Krista.” Leonard smiled at her, the same sweet smile she’d known for five years. The smile she’d grown to need, if not to love. “Now stop being a drama queen and piss off.”

She laughed, a raw sound she knew was really a choking sob.

“Sis,” Wade pressed his fingers into her shoulder one more time. “I can’t let you stay here. We have to—”

She snapped upright before her brother could say the word she didn’t want to hear. The lump in her throat was so thick she wondered how she drew breath. Perhaps she didn’t? She kept her stare on Leonard’s face, burning it into her memory. Her bonded mate for five years, the catalyst for her power. She could not kiss him, he would know it a lie, but she could not leave him either. He’d given her so much.

He’s give you his life, XXXX.

Wade hissed at the silent words of the spirits.

As if he too heard them, Leonard moaned, blood now seeping from his eyes, his ears. “Protect her, Wade.”

“Always have, always will,” Krista heard her brother state, his voice hoarse. She felt him move behind her, and then he was clasping Leonard’s hand over her shoulder. “Even when she’s being a stubborn pain in the arse.”

Leonard chuckled, a gurgling, fluidy sound. “Especially then,” he croaked. His hand slipped from Wade’s grasp and fell to the sand, a shudder rocking through him. “He’s coming. I can feel him now.”

Krista tore her stare from his unfocused eyes, searching the beach behind her.

And there he was, emerging from the rainforest far down the pristine stretch of white sand. So far away he was nothing but a dark speck moving toward them.

Far too close.

“We gotta go, Sis.” Wade’s fingers found hers and he squeezed her hand once, an unspoken warning. Leonard was special to him, like an uncle he never had, but Krista knew Wade had moved on. He had to. The time to go was here and he was not going to let her stay any longer. Just as he’d told her dying bonded mate, he protected her. No matter what he had to do, he protected her.

Leonard coughed again, a barely audible rasp, and Krista jerked her stare back to his face. His eyes were closed, the sand beneath his head stained with his blood. “Love you…Krista. Thank…you.”

She parted her lip, to say what, she didn’t know. Tears burned at the back of her eyes. The force deep within her existence boiled with enraged grief, a tumultuous fury building, building inside her. Ready to—

Wade pulled on her hand, hard and fast. Yanked her away from Leonard. Dragging her away. Pulling her along the beach, towards the northern outcrops of rocks jutting out into the Pacific Ocean.

She ran beside him, stumbling over her feet until she found them. Her croi threaded tighter through her weakening bond with Leonard, as if it sensed it soon would be gone. Threaded tighter even as the connection frayed and unraveled.

She ran over the sand, Leonard dying on the sand behind her, her brother holding her hand, urging her to hurry, to hurry, c’mon, sis, you need to hurry.

For a split second the bond burned so cold in her soul it made her cry out and she stumbled, almost falling. Wade caught her, his dark eyes telling her he always would as he guided her over the craggy rocks. She didn’t dare look behind her. Didn’t dare. To see Leonard lying on the sand alone…it would undo her.

So she ran beside her brother. Ran faster. Until they were in the dense rainforest hugging the coat, the ferns and vines and branches of trees lashing at their faces and arms and bodies, reaching for them. She had a moment to remember her brother ran naked, without protection of fur or hide or clothes, and then a wail tore the air behind them, high and agonizing, followed by another, just as high, just as torn with pain. And then it was cut silent.

Krista felt the bond between she and Leonard unravel completely. She felt her croi sink into stasis and knew her bonded mate was dead. Murdered by the professor.

And still, she ran.

***

So? Thoughts? Opinions? Feedback? Questions?

4 Responses to “The Prologue of Savage Seduction (a super advance preview)”

  1. Phuong P. Says:

    What a teaser! Love it & the series! I look forward to reading the book
    when finished 🙂

    • Ah, Phoung, for being the ONLY person to respond to this post I’m giving you a prize. Tell me what Lexxie Couper ebook you’d like from my backlist and it’s all yours 🙂

  2. Mary Preston Says:

    It’s been a long time since I went to Fraser Island & it was never like that.

  3. Phuong P. Says:

    Yaaay!!! I’d love to read Endless Lust. I will contact you with email address.
    Thanks Lexxie 🙂

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