Read Gladiator Online

Authors: Kate Lynd

Tags: #Post Apocalyptic Erotic Romance

Gladiator (4 page)

BOOK: Gladiator

She clutched at her throat and he slung her hard against the prison door. Veronica coughed and spluttered, gasping for breath. “Fine. Have it your way. But know this. You could have been free for one simple act. You chose the wrong side, Tristan Shane.”

“Guards! Bring her!”

As the guards approached, dragging Alex between them, Veronica’s eyes never left him. But he didn’t care. He’d been charged by his wife to let Alex protect him. He knew if he were to ever make the past right he would have to honor his vow to Alexandra.

“Step away from the door.”

The guards approached Tristan. He took Alex from them and lifted her up in his arms. Her body was completely limp. Her nose was bleeding and there were electrical burn marks all over her skin. Her face was bruised, and her throat bore purple fingermarks. He felt winded. Veronica was nothing if not sadistic.

As the cell door banged shut behind the guards, Veronica asked, “Aren’t you going to ask me why I had this done to her?”

Tristan ignored her. He carefully laid Alex on the bed and smoothed her hair from her face. Veronica sniffed. He laid a gentle hand to Alexandra’s cheek and joined her on the bed. She moaned as she stirred.

“Shh, be still. You’re hurt.”

“How is it that such a simpering idiot can inspire such loyalty?”

“Because she isn’t looking to rule the world. She’s looking to heal it.”

Veronica said coldly, “The world is going to die sooner or later. And because of her insistence on siding with the slaves she will die before the sun’s light goes out.”

He looked to the jealous woman he had ravished so often and said, “As long as I breathe, so will she. And as long as she breathes, the masses revile you. They will turn on you. Maybe not at first, but if you do kill her, they will deem her a martyr. And then, you will have to deal with me. I may be angry and broken, but I’m not a lost soul seeking to survive. Not any more. If she dies I will have my vengeance, no matter what the cost.”

! Enjoy your time with her. As fleeting as it is. Because when she goes, you will be mine to do with as I please.”

Alex murmured, “I’m sorry…I’m sorry…I’m sorry…”

The bile pooling in his gut was hard to quell. “Go. Now.”

“Or what? You’ll kill me?” She tittered.

Tristan placed a hand at Alex’s stomach and she groaned in pain. He looked at her and saw his dying wife there in her place. “If you don’t go now, Veronica, I swear I’ll paint the walls with your blood.”

“Oooo I just love it when you talk dirty to me.” Alex began to chant—and Veronica doubled over in agony. Tears rolled down her cheeks. “Enjoy her now. You never know when your time will be up.”

The guards made a chair with their hands, lifted Veronica up and carried her out of the bowels of the prison. Alex began to shiver violently. Discharging power when she was so weak had drained her.

Tristan lay by her and pulled a blanket over them both. He cuddled her close and pressed his lips to her forehead. “Hang in there Alexandra. You’re going to make it out of here. I promise I’ll get you out if it’s the last thing I do.”

She wept and held him so close their bodies were as one.

“I promise you I’ll do everything in my power to find your children,” she whispered.

His heart ached. “Don’t talk. You need to heal.”

“I feel them out there.”


She was silent. He was grateful. Dealing with the thought of his children suffering overwhelmed him. Knowing what had happened to females under Seymour Law made him nauseous.

He touched her stomach again and she groaned. “What did they do to you?”

“They tried to make sure I never reproduced.”

“If you’re the Prophecy, then why do your children matter?”

“They want to stamp every last bit of me out.”

“Did they succeed?”

She opened her eyes and looked at him. “I hope not.”

What he saw there took his breath away. She covered his hand with hers and chanted in what sounded like an old Scottish brogue. Her hand began to glow as did his, and finally so did her abdomen. He saw movement, and he realized it was the division of cells. The full impact of what he was seeing was not lost on him. His eyes met hers again.


Her entire body began to glow as he eased her shirt up. He kissed her tenderly and held her closer still. She pressed her body to his and his skin became luminescent blue. Wherever she touched him his skin glowed. He was utterly consumed and intoxicated by her. As they made love he let himself succumb to the fantasy of a life outside the prison.


Chapter Four


As her mouth trailed down his body Tristan let himself feel the full power of her healing touch. His skin came alive wherever the heat of her tongue tasted him—until finally she came to his cock. When she took him in her warm hand and began to stroke him gently, it was pure bliss. As he hardened she placed him in her mouth and began to suck hard, without mercy. Cupping his balls in her hand she fondled them in rhythm with her mouth, enveloping him further and further until he grasped her by the shoulders and moaned. In a state of ecstasy, when he came he thrust hard and she swallowed. His body flushed with desire as she climbed back on top of him. He rolled Alexandra to her back and kissed her without wanting it to ever end.

“What was that for?” she asked huskily.

He reached down between her legs and found her wet for him. She moaned and he smiled and it heated his blood further. He kissed her again, this time hard and punishing and she responded—she would go wherever he led her. When he broke the kiss she looked at him and said, “I am yours. I will never be of another.”

He felt such hunger, such possessiveness, when he kissed her that he feared he would never be able to get enough of her. He gazed at her as he spread her legs with his hands and slid his finger inside her, pushing down on her clit with each stroke. Feeling her breath catch and hearing her pant made his blood race. When her back arched he captured her mouth as she cried out his name. Showering her face with soft, feather-light kisses he slid his finger out and rolled on top of her. His cock went inside her eager pussy. She wrapped her legs around his waist. He settled inside her, moving slowly in and out of her as he gazed down at her lovingly.

“Our child,” he said, “will never know the inside of this prison. Or the rule of your sister. He will only ever know the love of his parents. And of my love for his mother.”

He brought his hand to her breast and kissed her. As she arched into his touch her eyes sealed their union. She had done what he had thought was impossible. She had healed the past. It was up to him to ensure their future.

* * * *

There was no time to sleep in this morning. Veronica was no doubt planning her next move, and if she discovered Alex’s pregnancy there would be no place to hide in this prison system. Alex would be sent into the arena alone to die. And he couldn’t allow that to happen. It was time to find allies, and as odd as it seemed, Damien Walker and Lucilla were the best candidates.

Judging by his reaction to Alexandra’s display in the arena his best bet would be to suss out Damien. Lucilla had been healed by Alex but she was still the King’s mistress. Of course, he’d been Veronica’s lover before Alexandra had been thrown into his cell and she’d revealed herself to him. The fact he felt anything other than loathing for someone in the Seymour family tree was still something he couldn’t quite get his head around. Maybe he never would. But perhaps that didn’t matter. She was nothing like her family. More than that, she was carrying his child, which in his arrogance he assumed was a son. She didn’t contradict him. But in moments like that, would anyone?

He shook his head as he showered himself and dressed. He walked over to Alex and kissed her cheek. “Good morning.”

She smiled up at him and then her countenance grew serious. “We need to get out of here. I don’t know how we can manage it, but we must. Or none of us stand a chance. And I can’t live with your blood or that of our child’s on my hands. Clean up and get dressed. I have a plan.”

She went to the crude shower and allowed the water to run down her head and over her body. Her nipples turned dark pink and hardened. He cleared his throat and turned away. He was tired from the days and nights of fighting and making love, but just the sight of her naked body made him want her again, and served as a reminder of how steamy those nights with her had been.

“You can look now. I’m covered.”

When he turned around she was in her shirt and jeans and looked every bit the young woman who’d been left to fend for herself when they’d dumped her in his cell to die. That was only if you didn’t look in her eyes. If you did look, you’d know there was great strength there and a capacity to heal with her heart and with her touch. She had turned a mob thirsty for a Heretic’s death into a crowd of hopeful spectators. She had already made him a believer. If he managed to get them out alive the world would have its Savior and he would have his family free from a woman evil enough to want her sister dead.

“What?” Alex asked, blushing.

He walked over to her and cupped her cheek. Running his thumb over lips he said, “I have to get you out of here.”

“The queen wouldn’t like that now would she?”

Both of them looked across from their cell to the one across from them. “Damien…”

There was the clatter of chains as he tried to step forward. “If you’re looking for a way out of here, I’m with you, but there’s a catch.”

“You’re not exactly in a position to demand anything, Walker.”

Alex placed a hand to Tristan’s chest. “Wait,” she said tenderly and walked to the door. “What is it?”

“My wife. You have to save her, too. You healed her when you could have killed her. Lucilla.”

“She’s favored by the King. We can’t be sure…”

She turned around and said, “You trusted me. And even though you were Veronica’s lover, I trusted you.”

“She’s a Gladiator like us, Tristan. A woman. My wife. Favored by the King or not, you know what you felt when Alexandra was forced to fight.”

Everything in Tristan revolted at the recollection. Somehow, it reminded him of his failure to protect his wife.

“Stop, Tristan. Your wife’s death was not your fault. As for you Damien, if I accept your help, I must have your word that you will not ever turn me or Tristan over to the Crown. And in return I will do everything in my power to heal your family.”

Pain and hope flickered in his eyes. Damien looked to Tristan. “She’s kept in the women’s quarters. She was taken to the Inquisition Quarters this morning. And after hearing Alex suffer the way she did, I don’t think I can bear it if the same thing happens to her. You must believe me when I say it. You have my word.”

“You both understand that most of the United States is a wasteland. And that even if we make it out of here alive there’s no guarantee we’ll make it to the sanctuary that used to be Kentucky.”

“But the Prophecy says, ‘
A Healer will come, and the waters will flow again, and grass will grow. And the corruption which was born out greed will fall into the past

Alexandra’s shoulders sagged as she gazed at Tristan mournfully. “Enough. Help us escape. She’ll heal your family. Is it a deal?”

Alexandra turned back toward Damien. She wrapped her hands around the bars of the prison door bars and lowered her head. She began to chant and her hands glowed. A wind enveloped the two cells and Damien’s manacles fell from his wrists and both cell doors flew open. Alex fell back…the wind died and she collapsed to the ground.

Tristan knelt down to her and lifted her up. “Alex. Open your eyes, look at me, look at me…”

She moaned. Damien knelt down on one knee and bowed his head. “I am but her humble servant.”

“Let’s take our swords. I’ll carry her out. I’ll do my best to distract the guards at the Inquisition Quarters. Get Lucilla, and meet us at the mouth of the slaves’ entrance.”

“How will we get past the Military Gunships?”

“By swimming across the trenches.”

“But if they see us, we’re fish in a barrel.”

“It’s the only way out. And you can always go back in your cell, chain yourself back up, and listen to your wife’s death. It’s up to you.”

“If she is the Healer there is no more sacred place to be than wherever she is. Very well. I’m in.”

Tristan lifted Alex over his shoulder and took his sword from Damien. Her chanting started again and Tristan quickly lowered Alex to her feet. She began to hover above the ground as wind whirled throughout the entire prison. Her eyes burned amber fire and her body took on an unearthly glow.

“Go get your wife. Now!”

Prison cell doors swung open behind them and Gladiators poured out, racing for the only exit available to them. Damien ran away from the scrambling men and toward the sound of advancing guards. But when the guards came upon them they fell upon their knees and pressed their faces to the ground.

Damien picked his way through them and vanished. As Alex continued to chant the guards began to weep like children, begging for forgiveness. It was unlike anything Tristan had ever seen. But he knew when the display was over Alex’s energy would be depleted. It seemed the only thing which gave her the energy to go on was his carnal touch. Not that he minded providing her with it; but was just that now was not the most appropriate time for it.

The wind continued to howl as he waited for Damien and Lucilla’s return, and tried to figure out a way to get away from the guards now under Alexandra’s spell. Damien returned with a severely beaten Lucilla in his arms, a look of desolation on his face.

Alex descended to just a few inches above the ground and said in an ethereal voice, “Bring her to me.”

Damien came forward as Tristan and the guards looked on. Tristan could feel the power of Alex’s otherworldly gifts coursing through his veins as she laid her hands at Lucilla’s forehead and chest. She began to chant again and the favored Gladiator’s face and torso lit up with an eerie glow. Her body began to heal before everyone’s eyes.

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