Authors: Felicity Heaton
Tags: #Romance, #Fantasy
Having turned his back on his snow leopard pride, Cavanaugh has been counting the days until he’s free of a role he never wanted—one that separated him from his fated female and stands between him and the future he craves with her.
Just days from the night he will finally be free to be with the low-ranking beauty who stole his heart, she walks back into his life and threatens to destroy everything he’s worked towards in the five long years they’ve been apart.
Eloise has travelled across continents searching for the male who was once her best friend and so much more to her, but was now her pride’s true alpha. Desperate to fulfil a promise to her kin to save them from the tyrant he left in charge, she convinces Cavanaugh to return to his pride, but as they journey to Bhutan, doubts bloom and old feelings resurface, tearing her between duty and her deepest desires and impossible dreams.
Will Eloise be able to resist the burning need that Cavanaugh reignites in her and remember her place in the pride? And can Cavanaugh find a way to save his kin and claim the future he craves with the woman he loves?
Book 1: Kissed by a Dark Prince
Book 2: Claimed by a Demon King
Book 3: Tempted by a Rogue Prince
Book 4: Hunted by a Jaguar
Book 5: Craved by an Alpha
Book 6: Bitten by a Hellcat (coming February 17 2015)
Book 7: Taken by a Dragon (coming March 10 2015)
Book 1: Covet
Book 2: Crave
Book 3: Seduce
Book 4: Enslave
Book 5: Bewitch
Book 6: Unleash
Book 1: Her Dark Angel
Book 2: Her Fallen Angel
Book 3: Her Warrior Angel
Book 4: Her Guardian Angel
Book 5: Her Demonic Angel
Book 6: Her Wicked Angel
Book 7: Her Avenging Angel
Book 1: Prophecy: Child of Light
Book 2: Prophecy: Caelestis & Aurorea
Book 3: Prophecy: Dark Moon Rising
Book 3.1: Spellbound
Book 3.5: Reunion
Book 4: Seventh Circle
Book 5: Winter's Kiss
Book 6: Hunter's Moon
Book 7: Masquerade
Book 8: Hunger
Books 1-3 are also available in one anthology ebook: Prophecy Trilogy
Book 1: In Heat
Book 2: In Heat: Mating Call
Discover more available paranormal romance books at:
Or sign up to Felicity's mailing list to learn about new titles, be eligible for special subscriber-only giveaways, and read exclusive content:
Cavanaugh checked his watch. The coloured lights above the bar of Underworld flashed across the glass face in time with the thumping music, but didn’t stop him from seeing what he wanted. It was gone midnight. Four years and three hundred and fifty seven days had passed. In eight days, with the rising of the full moon, he would be a man without status.
He couldn’t wait.
It felt as if this moment had been too long coming, as if he had been waiting an eternity for it to pass. Pride politics and all the bullshit that came with the territory would cease to exist.
He would be free.
Cavanaugh leaned his backside against the corner of the black bar, tucking himself away from the lighted area off to his left where Sherry was flirting with another group of young fae as she served them their drinks, twirling her blonde ponytail around her fingers, and Kyter was stomping around looking as if he was chewing a wasp. Hard. The big sandy-haired jaguar shifter had been in a foul mood since his new mate, Iolanthe, had returned to her homeland of the elf kingdom to break the news to her parents. Apparently, Kyter had wanted to go with her, and Iolanthe had wisely decided to go alone. Cavanaugh had overheard her mentioning something about how he had threatened to kill her parents.
He sighed and rolled his shoulders to ease the ache building in them, born of a punishing workout session that had lasted over half a day. The closer he came to the day he had been waiting for, the tenser he became and the only release he had found was unleashing hell on the gym Kyter had set up in the back of the nightclub Cavanaugh called home.
His boss had suggested finding a female to slake his needs, but Cavanaugh wasn’t interested in the women who frequented the club, or their attention. He could probably have his pick, but there was only one woman he wanted in this world.
His fated mate.
He palmed the right pocket of his black trousers, feeling the wallet there, his thoughts with the faded photograph it contained. The image was seared on his memory, burned there by countless hours spent lying on his bed in his small apartment in the back of Underworld, holding the old picture above him and staring at it.
Countless hours filled with regret.
Countless hours in which he had wondered how different things might have been.
He was trying to make that difference happen. He was trying to change the paths they had somehow ended up treading and bring them back together.
The methods he had chosen hadn’t been the best, but he couldn’t change things now. He had made his choice and he had lived with it, through the fight that had almost claimed his life to the pain of realising the mistake he had made to the close to five years of separation that had broken part of him.
That part of him had been fractured before he had set in motion the series of events that had brought him to Underworld.
It had been a constant source of pain since that fateful night back at his pride’s village and he had been doing his best to stem the flow of it, feeling as if he was trying to hold back a tsunami with his bare hands. Every night since then, he had patched up his heart as best he could and fought for the strength to keep walking forwards, his eyes fixed on the future he wanted, determined to make it happen.
Determined to turn all the mistakes he had made, and the pain and the loneliness he had endured, into something glorious.
Having his mate in his arms.
A commotion near the entrance of the nightclub off to his left caught his attention and Kyter’s too. Cavanaugh stared beyond the sandy-haired male, trying to catch a glimpse of what was happening. The crowd was too thick, the club jumping tonight, making it impossible to catch anything other than a flash of a tattered grey coat hood and a backpack. It looked as if someone had rolled into the wrong place.
They were dressed for a damned expedition, not a nightclub where most of the patrons wore little and worked up a sweat on the dance floor, and in the shadowy alcoves.
A female flagged him, waving her hand as if he was a slave and she could order him around. Cavanaugh shot her a black look but she persisted, flashing him a come-get-me smile that made him cold inside.
No one could smile as
Her smile lit up the world.
It made even the coldest reaches of his heart warm.
The smile she wore in the picture in his wallet, her arms wrapped around his neck and her rosy cheek pressed against his. She had hurled herself into his arms when her mother had offered to take a photograph of them to test out the camera he had bought for her as a present from his latest trip down the mountain to the nearest big town. He had been gone for a week and gods he had missed Eloise in that time.
Gods he had missed her since fleeing the village five years ago, his pride in tatters but resolve burning in his heart.
Hope that he might be able to carve out the future he wanted, escaping the one he had been born into and forced to accept.
He was about to give up and serve the female still frantically trying to get his attention when the hooded trekker moved closer. His gaze zeroed in on them over the heads of the patrons lining the busy bar.
It was a woman. Average height. A little too thin even with the thick coat. She stumbled into a group of five male demons near the edge of the dance floor off to his left and waved her small hands around, flashing scars that circled her wrists.
When one of the burly demon males lightly pushed her shoulder, barely touching her, she staggered back and almost fell but recovered herself. What was wrong with her?
Was she a homeless person, on drugs, or maybe drunk?
She was unsteady on her feet as she backed away from the demons, heading in Cavanaugh’s direction, towards one group of the thick black columns that rose up on either side of the dance floor to support the high ceiling of the club. The demons followed her, exchanging glances and wicked smiles that made Cavanaugh wonder what the female looked like. Her hood obscured her face, hiding it from him, but he guessed she was pretty because the demons looked as if they wanted to party with her.
She waved her hands again as she moved directly in front of Cavanaugh, clearly trying to deter the males, and he sensed the fatigue rolling off her. Not drunk or on drugs. She had stumbled because she was weak.
His dark grey eyes began to widen.
He could sense her fatigue?
Her scent hit him hard, knocking him back a step, and he had to grab the edge of the black bar top in front of him to steady himself. He stared at her, unable to take his eyes off her, his head and heart reeling.
It couldn’t be.
The demons tossed her black scowls when she flashed them something. A small square of paper.
The tallest of the group pointed towards the bar.
Cavanaugh’s heart stopped.
Wavy dark hair spilled from beneath the hood, the lights from the club playing over the lower half of her face, turning her pale skin different colours as she searched the length of the bar.
He dug his emerging claws into the wooden bar top to anchor himself, holding himself back as a fierce need to go to her swept through him and battling the waves of disbelief that crashed over him.
His heart said that she was nothing more than a fantasy. She was a figment of his overwrought imagination brought about by thinking of her too much, planning how he was going to make things up to her once he was free of his status and returned to the village, and how he was going to break it to her that she was his fated female. She couldn’t be here. It wasn’t possible.
His head and every instinct he possessed said that she was. She was real.
And she was as beautiful as he remembered, with her soft heart-shaped lips that made him yearn to kiss her, her impish button nose and her striking eyes framed by long dark lashes.
Looking at her now, he couldn’t believe he had managed to live so long without seeing her or smelling her scent, but the sight of her made the short time they had been apart feel more like an eternity than ever.
He breathed hard, clutching the bar top as he waited for her, his heart labouring as he silently willed her to notice him, even as he feared it at the same time. He knew she would be angry with him for leaving the pride and leaving her, and that making her understand his reasons was going to be difficult. He didn’t expect her to forgive him straight away, but he was willing to work to win her back.
She was all that mattered to him.
He didn’t give a damn about his position or the pride. There was only one reason he regretted leaving the village. There was only one reason it had killed him to leave.
It had killed him to leave her.
But she was here now. She was standing only metres from him, back within his grasp but still beyond it at the same time.
He cursed the gods.
They had given him both his wildest dream and his worst nightmare. Eight days. Why couldn’t they have brought Eloise to him in eight days, when he was free to be with her?
Waiting those eight days was going to be torture, but he would endure it. He would fight every instinct that demanded he claimed his mate, because she deserved to be cherished and treasured. She deserved to know that he loved her and what they had was real.
She deserved to have a choice and not feel obliged to be with him because he was her alpha and pride rules dictated she should give herself to him if he expressed an interest in her.
It wasn’t the relationship he wanted for them. He needed to know that she was with him out of choice, not because of his position.
He needed her to know that he respected her, loved her, and that she was the only female for him.
He wanted no other.
In eight days, that would be possible. He would be free to be her mate.
Right now, the laws of their kind dictated she could only be his mistress.