Authors: Becca Jameson
Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Romance, #Contemporary, #Paranormal, #Werewolves & Shifters, #Paranormal Romance
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Published By: Taliesin Publishing, LLC, PO Box 155, Sanford, MI 48657
Copyright © 2013 by Becca Jameson
Digital Release: December 2013
Cover Artist: Georgia Woods
All Rights Are Reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
This book is a work of fiction. The names, characters, places, and incidents are products of the writer’s imagination, or have been used fictitiously and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, actual events, locales, or organizations is entirely coincidental.
Table Of Contents
Adonia has been isolated from society her entire life. Banished from her pack for crimes committed before her birth, she lives a solitary existence with her mother in the wilds of Siberia.
Zephyr has been sent by the ruler of winter, Jack Frost, to find a daughter he just found out existed. When Zephyr finds her, the storm that erupts is both literal and figurative.
Fated to mate, Adonia and Zephyr must find a way to put an end to the blizzard burying them in snow. Battling forces of nature neither of them understands, they are trapped inside Adonia’s small cabin, waiting for…the inevitable.
To Georgia Woods and Lea Griffith. You both mean the world to me. Your encouragement and cheerleading when I’m writing is unsurpassable.
“Please step forward.” The stern deep voice of the Alpha sent a chill down Mila’s arms.
She lifted her head to absorb the faces of the wolf council in front of her. The five top members of her pack sat in a row behind an ancient long table. Her Alpha loomed in the center, seemingly larger than the other members. He was the eldest, his thick gray hair flowing behind his shoulders.
Mila took a deep breath and shuffled forward to hear her fate. Fear sent a flush across her cheeks and down her chest. She gripped the swaddled baby against her breast. Instinct caused her to bob up and down as she stood on trembling legs, soothing the squirming bundle in her arms.
She glanced down at the tiny face of her child. Adonia. She was perfect, no matter what anyone else thought.
“Your attention, please.” Her Alpha spoke again, making her flinch and lift her gaze.
She swallowed the lump in her throat. She’d done the unthinkable and had no idea what the repercussions would be. No one to her recollection within her pack had ever been so brazen as to commit a similar offense.
“The council has met and determined your punishment,” the Alpha began. “For the crime of fornicating with a member outside our species and producing a half-breed child from said offense, you are henceforth banished from the pack.”
Mila gasped. Banished? Where would she go?
The Alpha continued, “You are sentenced to a lifetime of solitude. You will leave this day and journey a distance of no less than fifty kilometers from here.”
Tears welled up in her eyes and trickled down her cheeks. She’d never survive alone in the wilds of Siberia, let alone be able to take care of a child. She stood speechless, her mouth parched, no words forming.
“As luck would have it, there is an abandoned cabin to the west. Years ago, it was used as a stopping point for members of the pack to rest during long travels. It’s in disrepair and hasn’t been visited for at least a decade, but your father has been there before. I will allow your parents to take you there and get you settled.”
He narrowed his gaze and held steady eye contact with her, even though she could barely see through the watery tears trickling from her eyes. “I will also allow members of your immediate family to bring you supplies monthly. This is the only contact you will have with us for the remainder of your life. At no point is that abomination permitted to return to the fold. Am I understood?”
Mila nodded, or at least she assumed she did. Her neck stiffened and she could barely move a muscle in her body.
“Go.” That was his final word, spoken with force and determination.
Mila somehow managed to turn and exit the building. She spoke to no one as she cautiously crossed the frozen layer of ice covering the snow and returned to the only home she’d ever known to gather her belongings. A lifetime banished from her pack, her friends, her family… She could think of no fate worse than that. Even death would be a welcome reprieve.
Mila snuggled the innocent bundle now sleeping in her arms. No, she would live, and she would raise this sweet baby to adulthood if it was the last thing she did. No matter what anyone else thought, Mila knew deep in her heart Adonia was destined for greatness. She was special. Not an abomination as her Alpha believed, but a perfect blend of snow wolf and…winter.
Twenty-seven years later
Zephyr stood on the precipice, rooted to the spot, all four paws digging into the snow. How long had he been in this position? He wasn’t sure, but there was one thing he was certain of—the woman he watched down below, working her ass off to prepare for the incoming storm, was his.
This hadn’t been in the plans. But Adonia Frost was indeed his mate.
He had no doubt of her identity. Her flowing blonde hair was almost white. He watched it whip around behind her in the increasing winds, the curls tangling, drifting over her face repeatedly as she stacked firewood closer to the entrance of the cabin. She never seemed to notice the impediment.
She worked hard and fast with more determination than any man Zephyr had ever known. Every movement had purpose.
Even from the distance where he stood, Zephyr could see the tiniest details of her pale complexion. Her lips were full and pink, her eyes a pale blue. Tiny dimples graced her cheeks when she smiled.
She was alone, but she smiled often, humming a soft tune that carried toward Zephyr with the breeze.
He’d never been so grateful for his acute senses. His enhanced vision permitted him the pleasure of observing this mate of his from a distance. Her tiny grunts as she worked were high pitched and made his cock swell, even in wolf form.
He didn’t know why he still stood there staring, except that he could. Time had frozen like the deep frost of the world around him.
She never looked his way, for which he was grateful. It afforded him the time he needed to come up with a plan.
He knew little about her. When he’d met with her father a month ago, the man had provided only the barest of details.
I have a daughter living in the wilds of the north. Please find her and bring her back to me
Jack was a man of few words, and not someone to be reckoned with. Zephyr’s ancestors had come to Siberia many years ago, moving away from northern Canada after a pack dispute. They were well-known for hundreds of miles as the only snow wolves to inhabit the land this far north.
There was another pack of wolves to the southeast. But they weren’t the friendliest of winter beasts. They were rarely seen and kept to themselves.
For more than a century Zephyr’s family had served Jack Frost, aiding the man in his many northern endeavors. Few creatures could survive the harsh winter conditions.
Why was Adonia able to withstand the perilous climate?
Zephyr knew only who her father was. He knew nothing of her mother. Was her half-relation to Old Man Winter enough to sustain her in these rugged conditions? Apparently so.
The wind picked up, blowing toward him. It carried new information with it. He could almost see the message written in the drifting snow as it gusted around him. He gasped and sat back on his haunches as he recognized Adonia’s other relation. Snow wolf.
No wonder he was so drawn to her. How had he not noticed this detail earlier? Had he been so consumed by her beauty, mesmerized by her determination, that he was blinded to her heredity?
Had Frost known this when the man sent Zephyr to find her? Of course he knew… Why had he withheld that detail?
How fortuitous the storm was coming from the east, and he was perched just west of her. It was the only thing saving him from being discovered prematurely. She hadn’t noticed him, and yet she belonged to him.
Could she shift? Would her fur be as white as her hair, blending her with the terrain as he was able to do?
Zephyr licked his chops and panted. The temperatures were falling as the sun lowered behind him. He could easily take refuge from the storm in any number of natural dens among the rock ledges and small caves; however, tonight he intended to stalk his mate until he had the courage to approach her.
Her small cabin was beyond quaint, but the smoke billowing up from the chimney promised cozy warmth.
Adonia finished her work and stood rigid for several minutes, staring toward the east. Her nearly white curls whipped around behind her in the wind, seemingly beckoning him forward. She lifted her face to the sky and spread her arms with her palms facing up. If he could somehow erase the surroundings and her stark white snowsuit, and replace the snow with sand and strip her down to a bikini, he would believe her to be sunbathing, soaking up the rays of a warm southern beach.
However, Adonia was neither facing the waning sun, nor had she likely ever owned a bikini. Instead, the winds picked up, swirling around her firm stance as though she called forth the storm herself.
Zephyr shivered, not from the cold, but from the realization that his mate may in fact be a force unlike any he’d ever encountered. As an Alpha of these lands for hundreds of miles in every direction, he didn’t often encounter anyone who could compete with his domination of the Arctic.
After what seemed like an eternity, Adonia lowered her hands and placed her palms on her hips. She didn’t turn in his direction or even flinch, but her distinct sweet pitch floated toward him as she said, “Are you going to sit there all night watching me, or would you like to come inside?”
Adonia smirked to herself as she stepped into her little cabin. She’d leave the preening white wolf outside to pick his jaw up off the ground. Did that man seriously believe she hadn’t noticed him? What rock had he crawled out from under when he got up this morning?
Granted, she would admit one thing. He probably had an agenda that went far beyond anything she could conjure in her mind. He definitely had the advantage there. She doubted he popped out of nowhere without ulterior motives. But, he didn’t hold all the cards. Most importantly, he hadn’t known she was part wolf. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have stood there in broad daylight all cocky, watching her work.
She’d sensed him before he’d surmounted the ridge. And she’d known he was her mate before she saw him in her peripheral vision.
His senses were probably top notch, as any snow wolf’s would be, but she had the added advantage of being half fey. She’d never met her father, but his blood ran thick in her veins.