Authors: Jenika Snow
This Way Comes
Being wicked never felt so good.
Born from hate and violence, Lathan knows all too well what darkness feels like. He’s centuries old, and an abomination to the supernatural world. With a vampire father who forcibly took Lathan’s werewolf mother as his own, Lathan’s hybrid genetics make him feared by all.
Abbi has no one, nothing of importance in her life, but that doesn’t stop her from living. When Lathan feeds on her and tries to use compulsion to make her forget, she realizes he isn’t just a vampire, but something altogether different. He’s also her mate.
Can Abbi accept Lathan for who and what he is? Can she allow herself to be mated to a man who is half vampire and half werewolf, one feared amongst human and immortal alike? She knows he won’t stop until he has her.
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SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES
Copyright © 2015 JENIKA SNOW
All Romance eBooks, LLC Palm Harbor, Florida 34684
This is a work of fiction and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, or business establishments, events, or locales is coincidental.
All Rights Are Reserved. No part of this may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever with out written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
First All Romance eBooks publication: October 2015
Lathan was born of this world in blood, hatred…violence. He took his first breath with his mother’s arms around him, her tears of sadness, hurt, disgust, filling him. It was the only world, the only emotions he’d ever known. And it was that memory, even as he lay there vulnerable—unable to speak, barely able to breathe—that he watched his mother pass. It was a curse being able to remember every single memory of his life, a “gift” because of his hybrid breed, his dual species genetics.
He stood in the shadows, his hunger insatiable. He watched the humans, knew their blood—the sustenance that gave him life, gave him strength and power—was also the same viscous fluid that disgusted him.
He was half vampire, half werewolf, a demon among his kind, an abomination because of the two bloodlines running through his veins and of how he came into this world. His werewolf mother was kidnapped and raped by his vampire father, a male that claimed she was his mate. But Lathan’s father hadn’t cared about anyone but himself. He’d defiled the one woman that was claimed to be his mate, took her from Lathan because he was a selfish bastard.
It was because of his father he didn’t have a memory that wasn’t tainted with violence and degradation. It was because of his father, Karloff, that Lathan couldn’t show his face in the paranormal community without fear and disgust following him, because everyone knew who he was. The stench of his father’s blood ran through his veins, tainting him, marking him as evil. Karloff’s reputation was by far the most sinister of their kind, was tainted with the horror of the life he himself led, and of the lives he took.
Maybe Lathan should have had more empathy for the man that sired him, the man that forced his seed upon Lathan’s unwilling mother. But the truth was after three hundred years of living in this world alone, Lathan had no empathy for anyone or anything. He had no emotions, no expectations, or even hope that he’d find a mate, if one even existed.
But he’d killed his father a century ago—ripped open his throat, bathed in his blood—sand knew that killing the man that had raped Lathan’s mother, took from her everything she knew and loved, was a small act of vengeance on his part. It wouldn’t solve anything, wouldn’t make anyone see him as anything more than a monster, but it made Lathan feel a little less dark inside.
He moved back into the shadows even further when a young, beautiful, and unsuspecting woman started walking toward him. She was human, with long reddish brown hair, and eyes the color of the greenest emerald. She was slender, couldn’t be more than in her twenties, and the animal in him—the wolf, the demon he was—rose up. He wanted to taste her, wanted her blood to coat his tongue and move along the back of his throat. He’d never been this thirsty before.
But it could be because he’d held off feeding for the last couple weeks, hating to taste the metallic flavor of the substance that gave him life. Lathan wanted her blood, wanted it covering his mouth and dripping down his chin.
His vampire side felt the call of the blood, felt the power move through him, strengthening his muscles, making his body coil tight, ready to snatch her body to his, tilt her neck to the side, and expose the creamy expanse of her throat.
And then she was right here, the wind picking up and blowing her hair around her shoulders, having her scent slam into him. His dick got hard, his claws emerged, and his fangs punched forward. He hadn’t been this excited, hadn’t been this aroused in his entire existence.
Lathan grabbed her around the waist, and just as she made a cry of noise, a scream for help, he put his hand on her mouth, blocking the sound, and had her neck exposed. His mouth watered, his fangs ached, and he didn’t deny himself the sampling that was this delectable woman.
He pierced her flesh with his fangs, groaned at the flavor of her rich, metallic, and sweet blood as it filled his mouth, and at the first swallow of the fluid he snapped his eyes open. Realization slipped into his very pores, into his cells, his very being. He took one more drink from her, her artery beating, pushing the blood into his mouth.
The one person who was supposed to make him a better person.
The one person that was his everything, that was born for
But he’d never be a better person, never be a good man, a male that could give her the life she deserved. He didn’t know her, but he knew she was made for him, born to be his. Lathan knew no matter what, he wouldn’t be able to walk away from her. She was his, and because she was his mate his fang marks would forever be on her neck, proudly displayed.
She was here, pressed up against him, making sounds, struggling. He was a monster, a demon like everyone said. He had his mate in a vice-like grip, his fangs in her neck, and her blood in his body.
He ripped himself away from her, hated that he’d become this evil creature that couldn’t even control himself, couldn’t tame his basic urges. But even if he could have, even if he was fully a vampire, not this hybrid monster, her blood would have still called to him, made him desire her like no other.
The shock traveled through him, and when she stared at him, her hand on her neck, blood oozing through her fingers, he cursed internally. He moved closer to her, saw her wide eyes, the fear coming from her, and knew that if he didn’t close the wound she’d bleed to death.
He focused on her eyes, didn’t want to have to manipulate his mate, his female, but if she didn’t allow him to close the wound she’d die. That was not something he was going to let happen, not by someone else, and not by fucking him.
He used the power from his vampire side, the part that allowed him to mesmerize a human. He commanded her to be calm, to come to him. Her pupils dilated, and she dropped her hand. Blood pulsed out of her, but she came toward him, her body not her own. He didn’t care about using his powers of compulsion on a human if he needed to feed, or for his own gain. He was a monster after all. But Lathan didn’t want that for his female, didn’t want to be the reason she was under compulsion.
When she was in front of him, he leaned down and ran his tongue along the twin puncture marks. They’d close, but she’d have his mark, have the twin scar marks, and a reddish hue around the wound because she was his mate. It was a way for others of the paranormal world to know that she was taken, and that anyone who thought to touch her would reap the pain and destruction of putting their hands on another’s mate.
He groaned at the flavor of her blood as he swiped his tongue once more over the wound, sealing it with the properties in his saliva. When Lathan pulled back she was staring at him. He could give her a new memory, make her forget about this time, this horror in her life. And that’s what it was: a horror. He was a demon, and being with her, making her stay with him, isn’t what he should want for her. But Lathan couldn’t walk away. His body and mind screamed at him to take her. She was his, after all, by birthright and fate—she’d been born for him. But Lathan knew she would be strapped with an evil male, one that had death surrounding him.
Forget about everything else.
She’s yours, and you deserve her.
“Go home, eat something with protein, wash yourself, and don’t remember the violence tonight,” he spoke softly, using the deeper compulsion to make her do what he said. She blinked a few times, touched her neck again, but wasn’t moving right away.
“You want me to forget about what you did to me,” she said in a soft, almost nonexistent voice.
He was taken back, because the truth was, once a compulsion was set in place the human didn’t question anything. They did what they were told. But he didn’t think too hard on that, and instead moved a step closer. Her pupils were still dilated, and the scent of her calm demeanor came through, telling him she was under compulsion still.
“Go home, know you’re safe, and don’t think about anything that was unpleasant.”
She slowly nodded, and continued to stare at his face. She turned to leave, but he grabbed her hand, stopping her. “What’s your name, female?”
She stared at him over her shoulder, blinked a few times, and the scent of her awareness coming back surprised him. She was strong, had a powerful mind for a human, and was fighting the compulsion.
He played her name in his head over and over again. He moved back in the shadows after releasing her hand, and watched as she rubbed her forehead and moved away from him. After about ten feet she stopped, shook her head, and looked back in the alleyway where he stood, but he knew she couldn’t see him. The shadows were too thick, too concealing.
Lathan knew that no matter what, no matter the fact she was safer, better without him in her life, he wouldn’t walk away from her. She was his mate, and nothing could change that.
Abbi stepped into her home, stood there for a moment, and let the night’s activities wash through her. She remembered leaving work, having to walk through the bad part of town, and then she remembered looking into glowing eyes. After that everything went blank, just disappeared. But there was this nagging in the back of her head, this thumping, this remembrance that wouldn’t surface.
Scrubbing a hand over her hair, she pushed away from the door and went into the kitchen. Grabbing a glass out of the cupboard, she filled it with water and rested her hand on the counter as she drank. She kept trying to remember what happened, why she felt like something big, monumental had taken place, but no matter how much she tried to pull those memories up she got this blackness, this onyx wall of confusion and frustration.
Going out of the kitchen and toward the stairs, she passed by the window in her living room and stopped. The back of her neck tingled, the tiny hairs standing on end. Even the hairs on her arms stood up. The feeling of being watched consumed her, and she turned, stared out the window, but only saw trees and the lone streetlamp on her corner. But even though she saw nothing, looking out the window, feeling as though she wasn’t quite alone had everything in Abbi standing at attention. She gripped her hand tighter on the banister, and after a second moved over to the front door to make sure it was locked.
Placing her hand on the cold, hard wood, she rested her forehead on the door and breathed out. Why did she feel like this? What happened to her from the time she walked past that alleyway to the time she found herself stepping into her house?
Maybe she just needed to soak, to relax and forget about everything? It certainly sounded like a good idea, and so putting everything behind her she made her way up the stairs and into the bathroom.
She filled her yellowing tub with hot water, poured in some cheap bubble bath, and faced the mirror. This house was a piece of shit, something she rented and had been living in for the last three years. She’d love to move out, but working at a bank in the city, one where she was a teller, didn’t make her nearly enough to afford anything nicer.
Besides, the house may be a piece of shit, but she could be living in worse, and in a far crappier neighborhood. At least she had a place to stay, a roof over her head, and a job that allowed her to pay her bills.
After slipping into the tub and turning off the tap, she rested against the back of the tub and closed her eyes. The water was a little on the hot side, and the steam rose up around her, but she felt herself relax and her head clear. The longer she stayed in the hot water the more her muscles relaxed. It was when she was on the verge of drifting off to sleep that a gate opened in her mind, and a flood of information rushed in, overwhelming her to the point where she sat up, water splashing over the lip of the tub.