Branch 2 in the Tree of Life Series
Stuck in steamy Bangkok managing a client’s convention, sidhe Cassia Firbolg meets mercenary soldier Vladislav Ruzcik. Vlad’s heart recognizes her as his mate and he immediately sets out to claim her as such, bonding their souls together. Cassia doesn’t realize that he’s a werewolf and that he’s claimed her until it’s too damned late.
But there are others who want Cassia, too. A crime lord wants to add a lovely blonde to his collection of captives. Demons hunger and hunt for sidhe flesh and side magic. Even Ares, the Greek god of war, is smitten with her.
Vlad does his utmost to protect his wife and raise a family. But even a mighty werewolf must succumb to time. Cassia must find the strength to survive the dissolution of one matebond to accept the saving force of another.
They walked another six blocks, turned two corners, and found a carnival of blinking lights and armed men blocking off the entrance to their hotel. Cassia cursed under her breath. Not all of those men looked like law enforcement. Some looked like military. Others just looked like thugs with automatic weapons. Someone saw their group and shouted. Then another person shouted. Then several someones starting shouting and waving their guns. Cassia wanted to groan.
“What’s going on, Cassia?” one of the group demanded. “Why won’t they allow us through?”
“They’re not speaking English, Spanish, French, or German,” she replied evenly. “I don’t speak Thai.”
“Then why in the hell did you arrange for our meeting and the convention here?” he demanded.
“Because this is where the board decided to have the meeting and the convention,” she answered in a saccharine tone. “If you’ll wait just a moment, I’ll ask what’s going on and see if we can gain entry back into the hotel.”
Cassia scanned the shouting men and picked one who looked like someone who might be official. She coughed lightly to get his attention and spoke slowly, “Do you speak English?” He stared at her. She rather thought that his gaze held a strong measure of contempt. He spat, the dark colored spittum landing just inches from her shoes.
“English?” she repeated loudly.
Another armed man shoved forward and raked his eyes down her body. Cassia felt anger finally ignite and clenched her jaws. Through gritted teeth she asked again, “Does anyone here speak English?”
“I speak very good English,” the thug with the rude eyes answered with a leer. “What you want, pretty lady? Maybe we make a deal?”
“My clients,” she gestured toward the group of supercilious looking men, “are attempting to return to their rooms at the hotel. We would appreciate being permitted to pass through.”
“I be your client,” the man said with guffaw and he elbowed one of his comrades saying something in rapid-fire Thai. The other men laughed heartily.
Cassia gave up. She wasn’t going to argue with armed thugs and she certainly wasn’t going to barter her body so that a group of narcissistic men could avoid a few more hours on the steamy streets of Bangkok. She turned around and returned to the group.
“Well?” several demanded impatiently.
Strong details, such as the color of the thug's spit, bring this scene to life.
Hard boiled, scrambled, over easy, and sunny side up: eggs are the musings of Holly Bargo, the pseudonym for the author.
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