Authors: Amy Sumida
Tags: #Fiction, #Romance, #Paranormal
Of Gods and Wolves
Copyright © 2013 Amy Sumida
All rights reserved.
To Kaitlin and Daniel Cummings, my half-sister and half-brother who I love completely.
Most of the people in this book are fictional, based on myths of gods and goddesses, but there are a few characters who exist and I'd like to acknowledge them here.
Sommer Castor is as strong as her character, the most loyal friend I've ever had. Tristan and Jackson are actually Richard Harrison and Cliff Green respectively. They are as witty and entertaining as Jax and Tryst are, making it impossible for me to resist adding them to my stories.
Tahnee Ross is as sweet as she is here and is now passing that sweetness on to her children. Her dogs are just as lovable as she, fierce defenders of their mistress and, on occasion, myself. Justin, her husband, is a smart man, not only in his scientific research but for marrying such a wonderful person. Also, Pamela Young really is a local news reporter and a lovely lady. Thank you all for enriching my world.
Also, a big thank you to Sommer and Krystal Holm for helping me edit.
Estsanatlehi(Mrs E): Es-tan-AHT-lu-hee
árngreipr: Yarn- gri-per
Tsohanoai(Mr. T): So-ha-noe-ayee
UnnúlfR: Un- nul-fur
Was draining a god's power in self-defense still considered murder?
It's not like the police were going to come knocking on my door. “I swear, Officer, it was a self-defense draining!” I groaned as I looked over my reflection in the mirror. Yes, I killed gods but I did it to protect my race from their manipulations. I did it because gods weren't really gods, they're Atlanteans, yep, from that Atlantis.
After destroying Atlantis with their quest for power and magic, they moved across the world in a diaspora of soon-to-be deities. They found us, humans lacking their skills but full of magical potential, and with their flashy magic, they convinced us they were gods. Then they took the sacrifices we made and used them to make the fiction a reality.
Oh, but we got bored with them. We forgot most of them, moved on, decided to consolidate down to just a handful of gods. Unfortunately, they did not forget about us. They had grown accustomed to our energy, using it to prolong their lives and refresh their magic. So the forgotten ones banded together and found a new way to do things, a new way to steal our power. They manipulated mankind, infiltrated governments, plotted and schemed to bring us to war against each other, and then they took our dead as their sacrifice.
When I first discovered this conspiracy, I thought all gods were bad. I hunted them, tracing through the Aether, a place of thought and magic which binds our world to the God Realm. I didn't know there were gods who viewed relationships with humans as a symbiotic exchange of energy for information. I didn't know there were those among them who still loved us, guarded us, and guided us. But that was before I met Thor.
Now, not only do I know about the division among the gods, I know that as a human witch, I have the ability to take back what they stole. I can drain a god of their magic til there's nothing left to sustain them. Til they die and go wherever the hell it is gods go to when they die. Thus, my current situation.
I killed Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love. Except, you see, she wasn't all that loving. She was in the middle of torturing me to death, when I began to drain her, simply because I had nothing left to defend myself with. Now, I had her magic of Love, Lust, War, and Victory. Also, I had a healthy dose of
pretty ladled on me. My hair was longer, shinier. My skin was perfect for like, the first time ever. My lips were fuller, my eyebrows would never need another plucking, and everything felt a little tighter, if you know what I mean.
So there I stood, perusing this new improved Vervain Lavine and wondering why I felt so guilty about it. Maybe it was the way it made me feel less than human somehow. Of course, this new perfection was the least of my current concerns. You'd think hanging with gods would be cool, dating one even better, but so far, all it had meant for me was a lot of drama.
I was dating Thor, God of Thunder, the Sea, yada yada. He was fantastic. Gorgeous. Un-fucking-believable. But somewhere along the way, I'd saved the life of a werewolf. A prince, no less, and had unknowingly bound him to me in some weirdo Froekn(werewolf) ritual. Now Trevor, said werewolf, had to touch me monthly or he'd die. I'm not exaggerating, he'll waste away and die if we don't get skin to skin. Something about being separated from the part of his soul he gave me. So, no pressure.
Thor was handling this surprisingly well. I'd be going apeshit if some hot chick had to touch him once a month or die. But then Thor's a god, he's probably used to all this bullshit. I, however, am only human(I think) and having a sinfully sweet werewolf come onto me all the time, giving me these big freakin' puppy dog eye stares, is driving me insane. Oh, and then there's Blue.
Blue, aka Huitzilopochtli, is the Aztec God of the Sun. His name drives me crazy, so I shortened the English version of it(Blue Hummingbird on the Left) and just call him Blue. It's appropriate in so many ways but let's not digress. He's also the Father of all Vampires. He's beautiful and broken, charming and vicious, evil and brilliant... and out of his fucking mind.
My new magic wants to save him, fix him, but I have no idea how to go about doing that.
wants me to be his Blood Bride or some shit. Queen of the Blood? Vampire Empress? I don't know, it's too twisted to think about. At the moment, it's kind of moot, since he hasn't shown his hot Aztec face in over a week. I'm not sure if that's a good or a bad thing. I
sure it's one more thing I have to worry about.
Man, I needed a vacation. Or a massage. Or a massage on my vacation. Sighing, I went to lie down and find some peace in my dreams. I had maybe an hour of peace before Trevor came barreling into the room I shared with Thor in Bilskinir, Thor's Hall in the God Realm of Asgard.
“What, you don’t knock?” I lost my smirk when I saw the frantic look on his face. “What is it?” I sat up and moved to the edge of the bed.
We have a problem, Minn Elska,” he curled around my feet and laid his head in my lap.
Oh boy, here we go. Trevor was bonded to me but I wasn't bonded to him. That didn't stop the Binding from exerting a little influence on my hormones though. Just being around Trevor made it difficult to be faithful to Thor but when he touched me and called me his love in Old Norse, I turned into silly putty.
“Are we out of ice cream?” I tried to fend off the attraction with humor.
He shook his head a little and stared up at me with wide, honey-colored eyes. “I don’t know. Should I go check?”
“It's a joke, Trevor.” I sighed and stroked his hair. He immediately nuzzled his face into me and hugged my legs with a satisfied grin. “So what’s the problem?”
He looked up, as if suddenly remembering the reason he was there, and blushed, “My father.”
Yes, him,” he rubbed against me again and sighed, warm breath tickling my bare legs, where my silk slip had rode up.
What about him?” I was trying to block out the lust spreading in delicious waves from my lap. I wished I wasn't still sitting in bed, a very bad location to be having such a reaction to Trevor.
He wants to meet you.”
Well that doesn’t sound so bad,” A sweet feeling of contentment was weakening my limbs, fogging my mind. His hair was so soft in my hands but I couldn’t even remember reaching out. He rubbed his face harder against me and the muscles in my thighs relaxed, falling open so he could shift closer.
bad,” Thor’s booming voice snapped my head up and my thighs back together. He fell onto the bed beside us and yanked Trevor from my lap. Trevor started to growl but Thor shoved him away from the bed. “You can’t think straight when you’re touching her, believe me, I have the same problem, and you need to tell her about the trial.”
Trial?” I looked back and forth between them. “I’m a witch, I don’t like that word.”
Trevor shook his head and frowned. “You’re right, Thunderer, I apologize. The Binding is hitting me hard.”
“Tell her,” Thor gentled his tone a bit.
Father doesn’t feel that I’ve chosen wisely” he looked down, his jaw clenching and his eyes twitching. “He wants you to be tested for worth.”
Tested? Does he know I didn’t ask for this?”
He says you bound me, knowingly or not, and you must prove yourself worthy of the honor or he’ll remove it.” Trevor looked up at me, clearly shaken.
If your father is so unhappy, Trevor,” I had to handle this delicately but I was ecstatic that there was a way to release him. “Maybe we should just let him remove the Binding.”
Vervain,” Thor took a deep breath and shook his head at Trevor, who looked so stricken, I thought he’d be in tears at any second. “She doesn’t get it Trevor, relax. Vervain, there’s no way to undo the Binding in the sense you mean. Fenrir is speaking of killing you to free his son, hoping Trevor will live through it. Fenrir thinks the bond is unconsummated and so he believes there’s a chance for Trevor to break free upon your death.”
Unconsummated?” I frowned and then blushed. “R-i-i-ight, I remember, but since we
consummated or whatever, what would happen to Trevor if I died?”
He’d die too,” Thor watched me carefully as it sank in.
But you’re immortal,” I searched Trevor’s face for an ounce of hope that I’d misunderstood. “I mean, you can die if someone hurts you bad enough, but otherwise you’d live forever, right?”
Not anymore,” Trevor didn’t look the least bit disturbed by his death sentence. In fact, he looked calm, peaceful, happy even.
You’ve traded immortality to be bound to me in a one-sided bond?” I was horrified.
I’d be dead without you anyway.” He shrugged casually, his hands deep in the pockets of his jeans. Very flippant, very James Dean. Werewolf without a cause.
I was the one that nearly killed you in the first place.”
Because I was attacking you,” he grinned lopsidedly. “It was the best day of my life.”
This is not our problem right now,” Thor stood up and glared at both of us.
What?” I blinked up at him. “Oh right, so just tell him it’s consummated and he needs to get over it.”
I have,” Trevor looked away, “he doesn’t believe me.”
Why not?” I was so frustrated, I could spit.
I don’t carry your scent,” Trevor started to blush a pretty shade of rose.
What do you mean
carry my scent
?” I stared at him and then Thor. They both had matching looks of embarrassment. “Cheese and rice! No way! He sniffed you to see if he could smell sex?”
Trevor nodded and Thor sighed.
“What it comes down to, Vervain,” Thor sat back down and took my hand, “is this. You can either consummate the bond in front of Fenrir or accept the challenge.”
So I’m to either fuck or fight for his entertainment, is that it?” Trevor’s shoulders slumped and he looked at the floor in misery.
That’s it,” Thor, at least, met my eyes.
What kind of trial are we talking about?”
You’ll have to face three warriors of my father’s choosing,” Trevor looked up, smiled, and shrugged. “I know you can win, you’re my Lady Huntress. You’ve fought the wolves before and won. You’ve even beaten me and I’m the best of our fighters.”
Are you sure it’ll be werewolves only?” I looked at Thor and then back at Trevor.
Trevor nodded but Thor was the one who answered. “Fenrir can only use his own power to test you. It’s our law.”
“Fine, set it up,” I slumped back, then shot up again. “Do I have to kill them all or just win?”
You just need to disable them. They can change and heal if you let them.” Trevor smiled and shook his head. “Your compassion is such a treasure to me. It's humbling.”
Yeah, great. Let's just hope it has the same effect on your father,” I smiled weakly. “Now when is it going to be?”
Two days hence,” Trevor grimaced and I groaned. “He wanted to test you tonight but I begged him to let you prepare. So he granted us two days.”
He’s not too happy with you for giving up your immortality, is he?”
wasn’t too pleased about it, so I could only imagine what dear old Dad would think.
He’s furious,” Trevor nodded.
Well, let’s just hope I can keep us alive till the end of the week and then we’ll take it from there.”