Today I am so pleased to welcome Eliot Grayson to Joyfully Jay. Eliot has come to talk to us about her latest release, Lost and Bound. She has also brought along a great giveaway! Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
I walked down the hallway, the blond’s grip on my arm firm but short of punishing. He knew I wouldn’t run. He knew I wouldn’t fight.
Somehow, paradoxically, that drained the last of the impulse to fight right out of me. I didn’t used to be like that. I used to be a contrary bastard.
We reached the end of the hall, and Baldy pushed past me to put his hand against a panel set into the wall by a metal door that stank of magic. The panel glowed faintly purple for a moment, and a heavy thunk and click echoed from inside the door.
The blond pulled it open. The room beyond lay in murky shadows, and I could only see a glint of something metallic. He shoved me through, and I stumbled and tripped a few steps inside.
“Brought you something to play with,” the bald guard said, his voice thick with something foul and anticipatory, making my heart skip a beat and the hair stand up on the back of my neck.
And then the door slammed shut behind me.
The scent hit me first. It wasn’t a bad scent, exactly, although no smells in this place had ever been mouthwatering.
It was a terrifying scent. Hot iron and bone-freezing chill, like fresh blood spilled on glacier ice, with a vein of uncontrollable wildness running beneath.
I blinked and stumbled back again, my shoulder blades hitting the door hard. I pressed my palms against it, clammy flesh on unyielding cool metal. A faint chink of metal sounded in front of me, and I blinked again, adjusting to the lack of light. After a moment, dim slits of twilight gray resolved out of the darkness, tiny windows like those in my own cell, high up in the wall across from me. I focused on them, hard. If I looked at those, I didn’t need to see anything else. Whatever was in this cell with me, I didn’t want to know. The scent had intensified, richer and sharper both, becoming mesmerizing.
And the sense of menace that came with it had grown too. I really didn’t want to know.
Finally I had to know. Night had almost come, and in a few moments there’d be no light at all to see what lurked in the cell with me, no matter how much my werewolf senses compensated for the dark.
I looked down, away from the window slits.
Something sat against the wall on a pallet similar to my worn mattress. Something big. Three faint gleams: a metallic reflection, and twin pale stars, the glow of alpha eyes. Not golden, like the alpha werewolves I’d always known before, but bluish silver.
It didn’t move.
I didn’t move.
Whatever it was took deep, even breaths, slow and calm, and it didn’t move a muscle.
My legs started to shake, protesting their rigid tension after weeks of sitting on the mattress twenty-three hours a day without even the exercise of walking to the labs.
I’d long since given up on exercising in my cell.
I slid down the door until my ass hit the concrete, drawing my knees up to my chest.
Darkness fell. I could still see a little, the faint starlight filtering in through the wall slits giving me enough to make out shapes, at least.
My heart still pounded in my throat at first, but after some indeterminate time of nothing fucking happening, it settled down. I got cold and stiff, but at least calm again.
And nothing happened.
Something to play with.
Either I wasn’t a tempting toy, or the…whatever it was across from me wasn’t in the mood to play.
The air between us hung thick with nauseating uncertainty.
I couldn’t take it anymore. I’d almost forgotten this aspect of my own personality, the inability to keep my stupid mouth shut. It’d been so long since I’d had anyone to talk to. My lips and tongue practically ached with the need to move, even though my throat felt so dry I didn’t know if words would emerge.
“Who are you?” It came out a hoarse whisper.
The shape across from me moved slightly. I had the impression of size again, of something massive shifting in the depths of the ocean, or of a predator moving in the darkness of a forest. All my hackles would’ve gone up, except that they’d hit peak up the moment the guards opened the door.
“Does it matter?” I twitched, adrenaline jolting through me. That voice, oh fucking gods, that voice. Deep and raw, and not human. Not remotely fucking human, not even in the way shifter voices were human.
I swallowed hard, peering into the darkness at those faintly glowing eyes.
“Since we’re stuck in here together, it matters to me?” My voice came out high-pitched and weak. “I’m Jared.”
His laugh scraped along every one of my nerves, a rusty knife dragging over concrete.
And it was definitely his. No way did that voice, that laugh, belong to anyone not male. What kind of male creature, though…that I couldn’t even guess at. His scent was like nothing I’d ever encountered.
“I don’t give a fuck what your name is,” he said. “It doesn’t matter to me. I doubt it matters to you, either. Not in here.”
Something about the note of utter indifference, bordering on despair, hit a nerve I’d thought long numbed into the same kind of deadness.
No, dammit. No. It mattered. My heart beat faster. I mattered. I still mattered. Jared Armitage was still alive, still here. Even if here meant buried alive in a concrete prison, waiting to die.
“My name is Jared,” I gritted out. “I’m a werewolf. I’m—” I stopped, struggling for anything else I could say about myself. I hadn’t exactly been the most interesting, charming guy before all of this. In fact, I’d been kind of an asshole. My lips quirked, into the first attempt at a smile I’d managed in so long I almost didn’t recognize the feeling of my muscles moving that way. “I like jazz concerts, long walks on the beach, and having fun.”
He made that sound again, that horrible not-laugh. “You’re never going to hear music again, Jared the werewolf,” he said, very low. “Or walk on a beach. Or have fun.” He spat that last word like it tasted foul. “You’re going to die here. And soon. Now shut the fuck up.”
The two points of glow winked out.
He’d closed his eyes. He wasn’t even bothering to look at me anymore.
And the implication that I’d die a lot sooner if I kept talking definitely wasn’t lost on me.
Kidnapped, imprisoned, and experimented on for two years, Jared Armitage has lost the will to live. When his captors give him to another prisoner, one who can and probably will take Jared’s life, he comes face to face with the most terrifying thing of all: hope.
Calder’s warlock captors meant to turn him into a monster, and they nearly succeeded. Starved, desperate, and filled with rage, Calder hasn’t cared about anyone in years. Until Jared. Together they have a chance at escape and Calder has someone to fight and kill for. To cherish. Someone he doesn’t want to hurt.
Life after captivity isn’t easy. Jared never wanted a mate like Calder, but he craves Calder’s intense attention, his ability to take Jared apart…and then put him back together again. Even if their mate bond is only temporary.
But Calder’s made a promise—one he’ll die before he breaks—never to hurt Jared or let him be hurt. Unexpected enemies are lurking, targeting Jared, Calder’s one weakness. Their intense bond—and maybe even love—are worth everything, and they’re both willing to fight for it…or die trying.
Lost and Bound contains dubcon and graphic violence. It also includes a monster who torments his mate by being too gentle, the werewolf who can’t stop craving him, knotting—and a guaranteed HEA. The book has new main characters, but it is best read in series. This series does not contain mpreg.
Buy Link: Amazon
Eliot has brought a winner’s choice of any previous Mismatched Mates series ebook to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Thursday, June 10th at 11:59 pm ET.
One winner, and I’ll give away any previous Mismatched Mates ebook, winner’s choice!
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