NY Times bestselling author, K.N. Lee presents Silenced, a dark paranormal romance novella set in The Chronicles of Koa universe.
Silence kept her alive.
Magic will set her free.
Willa Avery created the serum that changed the world as humans, witches, and vampires knew it. Sun Serum 99, the cure for a vampire’s death by sunlight. Many tried to create it, but it took the magic and science of a Grand Elite Caster to perfect it. Despite the fame and recognition that came with this discovery, the fact remains: Willa was forced by the vampire king of the West to create the one thing she could have used to kill him.
After hiding from the king and his spies for years, she’s tired of living in the shadows. She vows to end his reign of terror and return to the man she was stolen from a century ago.
With her two best friends–witches of high rank by her side, and the love of a vampire seeking his freedom, can Willa destroy the king that ruined her life?
Join Willa and her clan of witches on an epic quest to reclaim her throne in this dark paranormal romance perfect for readers and fans of Bella Forest.
“ARE YOU SURE you want to do this? There are other ways. You don’t have to expose yourself,” Zoe whispered, taking Willa’s hand within hers. “We can find another way to make him pay for what he did to you.”
The warmth of Zoe’s hand was soothing, but memories of the pain and suffering Lukas had put Willa through sickened her. Her stomach churned at the flashbacks of blood, broken bones, and being locked away without any fresh air or sunlight.
The torture. The humiliation. The way he used to feed on her to make himself stronger before battle.
Willa came to the front door of her family’s estate. Night fell and the house was still empty for once as the staff and her family were devoted to setting up the back gardens for her engagement party.
Her smile faded when she opened it to see a stranger standing there. With long blond hair pulled into a ponytail at his nape, piercing green eyes, and a strong chin, he was one of the most attractive men she’d ever encountered.
“Hello, Willa,” he said, his charming smile instantly disarming her. “Mind if I come in?”
Willa swallowed. At least, he was polite and asked to enter her home. She almost considered denying his request. What was the harm in letting in a handsome stranger? She figured he was probably one of her parent’s associates from London.
“I suppose,” she said, looking past him at the carriage in her courtyard. “Is there something I can do for you?”
Once he was inside, she watched him examine the paintings hung over the console beside the staircase. He sniffed the freshly cut flowers.
“There is.” He turned back to her, his smile widening. “Come here.”
Warnings screamed at her, but she couldn’t keep her feet from moving toward him.
His bright green gaze soaked her in, making her cheeks flush. She looked away when his eyes rested on her mouth.
“How old are you?”
What an odd question, she thought. “Twenty-one.”
He rubbed his chin. “Really? Very nice. But you are a Grand Elite Caster, correct? You will live for all eternity if you choose?”
Her heart stopped. “How did you know?” Only Grand Elite Casters had the choice for immortality once they reached maturity. Willa, like her sisters sworn to protect their race would remain twenty-one forever.
Shaking his head, he hooked his thumbs in his belt loop. “Never mind that. Just answer my question. Now.”
“Yes,” she blurted. She frowned. “What magic are you using on me? Please. Stop it.”
Willa folded her arms across her chest.
“I’m sorry, Willa. But, I am the one giving the commands from now on. Understand?”
The grin that came to his lips made Willa’s brows rise. Her cheeks flushed as he rubbed his bottom lip with his knuckles. “Who are you?”
He leaned close to her ear, making her stumble backward until her back was pressed against the wall. He placed a hand beside her other ear, boxing her in. “Your worst nightmare,” he whispered, the warmth of his breath intoxicating her. “And that was another question. No more.”
He flashed his fangs, licking the sharp point with his tongue.
Her heart pounded in her chest. Until then she’d only heard of vampires.
“I’ve been watching you for some time now,” he admitted. “And I think you’ve put me under a spell, you delicious little witch,” he purred, his mouth a sliver of an inch from her lips.
Willa held her breath, desperate to be free from his allure and seduction.
She swirled out from under his body and took several steps away.
“Please leave, sir,” she said, her cheeks red. “My fiancé will be here any minute.”
“Call me Lord Lukas,” he said, standing tall before her.
“Please leave, Lord Lukas.” Willa was on the verge of shouting out, calling for anyone within ear’s reach.
“I’m sorry. I can’t do that. And I hate to tell you, but that boy you’re engaged to can’t save you.” He reached for her. “Not from me.”
Willa turned to walk away, not wanting to hear any more about the vampire she loved.
When Lukas appeared before her, she let out a screech that morphed his face from amusement to rage.
Lukas wrapped a hand around her neck, and Silenced her, muting her powers with a single touch. One gaze into her eyes and she was lost. She could feel the emptiness within, and it frightened her more than the cold look in his eyes.
“You see, Willa. Sometimes you have to take what you want. I want you.”
No, no, no, she thought. Be strong, Willa. Resist.
It was too late, the vampire before her knocked down her walls and entered her mind.
“Good girl,” he said.
Willa woke to the crackling of fire. Groggily, she turned her head and yawned. The bed was comfortable, like her own, but smelled different.
“Isabelle?” She called for her lady’s maid, her mind fuzzy on everything that happened that day.
“Sweetheart,” Lukas’ voice called from a chair in the corner of the room.
Willa’s mind raced when she realized that her hands and ankles were chained to the bed. In the corner of the room, Lukas watched her, a book in his hand.
Panic filled her veins. “What is happening? Why am I chained?”
“No need to fret. The chains are for your protection,” Lukas said. “I’m a bit different from that boy. I like to train my women to fit my tastes. You know? To make them perfect.”
Willa felt her throat tighten with fear.
Train? You can’t train people.
“Do not worry. You’re already the closest to perfect I’ve ever encountered. You’ll be free from your chains before you know it.”
“Please, sir. Don’t do this.”
When he came to his feet, Willa coiled back as far as she could. Where was the charming act he’d put on for her before? She knew she now looked at the real Lukas, and it terrified the hell out of her.
“Lord Lukas. Or master.”
Willa’s lips trembled.
“Lord Lukas,” she stated in a soft voice.
“Good,” he said with a sigh. “I do have to do this, Willa. If I am to keep you, you must be perfect. I can’t let you go.”
Heat filled Willa’s cheeks as she summoned the fuel of power within her belly.
She squeezed her eyes closed as it built and built, ready to explode out of her pores. Her mind raced when she realized that something blocked its release.
“You may want to conserve your energy,” Lukas said, standing over her. “You won’t be able to use your power on me,” he said.
Willa’s eyes popped open.
The Silence power was real.
Dread brought tears to her eyes.
Lukas knelt to her side, alarm filling his eyes. “No,” he said, cupping her face with one hand and stroking her hair with the other. “No tears. Smile for me.”
Willa! Fight him!
A forced smile came to her lips.
He stroked her cheek and kissed her. His voice lowered to a whisper. “Now tell me you love me.”
Willa’s stomach churned. No!
“I love you.”
The words were empty and hollow, but Lukas didn’t care. He kissed her again and all Willa wanted was to rip out his tongue. She feared what he would command next.
She looked down at her body. She wore a sheer white gown and nothing else. She felt as if she’d be sick. The thought of how she ended up out of her clothes and into the sultry new ones worried her. Lukas’s eyes watched her.
She prayed he hadn’t touched her without her consent. No one was that cruel.
Willa bit her lip, fearing that she was naïve.
“You know I won’t make love to you until you beg me for it, right my love?”
Willa nodded quickly, anything to convince him not to force himself on her. She couldn’t afford to lose all of her free will or privacy.
“Thank you,” she murmured.
“Anything for my lady. Now, let’s get you some food. You slept much longer than I’d anticipated.” Lukas stood. His face was as excited as a boy before Christmas. “I can’t have you losing too much weight. You’re already too thin.”
Witches. Magic. A terrifying glimpse into the future.
Sophie Saterlee has made it her mission to get her life together. Leaving behind an abusive relationship, she’s bartending her way through a psychology degree. When a terrifying recurring nightmare begins to poison Sophie’s waking hours and threaten all her progress, once again she’s close to losing everything.
An invitation to a tea leaf reading party sounds like exactly the kind of distraction Sophie needs. But an innocent girls’ night out turns into a journey through a complex and treacherous world of magic.
To survive it, Sophie must forge uncomfortable alliances with arrogant Donovan and mysterious Caine. One of them is tied to her past, and the other fills her present. Both men might hold the key to her uncertain future.
There’s more going on in her little corner of the world than Sophie realizes, and the truth will change everything.
Download the urban paranormal fantasy fans are comparing to Ilona Andrews and Karen Marie Moning.
Why am I here?
I turned around, searching through the rain for the exit to the street above. The soles of my feet were numb, submerged below rapidly rising water. I lifted a foot, but had to sink it back into the dark water, the crunch of gravel now only a slight pressure against my skin. The creek was flooding into the park, water rushing toward me. Debris from the trees wrapped around my ankles as the stink of the creek wafted into the stirring air. The rain and wind battered the blanket of liquid taking over the park, while an uncomfortable tingle grew up my calves. Cold took root within my body.
A shudder skittered along my spine and crawled under my skin as my panic intensified. This wasn’t just the wind or the rain, or even the cold. The hyper-vigilance of someone watching me had my eyes open wide despite the rain.
I spun around, looking for what had me in its sights. Seeing nothing through the pouring rain but trees in the darkness, the feeling grew into an urgency to escape.
This urgency should have got me moving. Instead I froze, unable to will my body to listen to my brain.
Whatever was in that darkness was close.
At my back.
Can I run fast enough to get away? Not with the water now up to my knees. Should I run for the safety of the stairs or confront the thing? Every muscle quivered in fear of either choice. Like a frightened child, I snapped my eyes closed, wishing for a blanket to hide under.
Gathering my gumption, I held my breath and slowly turned around. Tense moments passed as my lungs burned. Still with my eyes closed, I felt the presence move closer. I had no doubt something was there.
Come on, Sophie. I goaded myself into rummaging up a hint of courage.
As soon as I peered through my lashes, the black mass in front of me made my heart stutter. No distinguishable features were illuminated. There was no way of knowing what it was, but its oppressive size made me want to sink into the water now grazing my thighs. I shivered.
Terrified curiosity made me fully open my eyes. The darkness rushed forward, and the shock of seeing, yet not seeing what was coming for me, woke me up with a gut-wrenching scream.