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A Sanctuary Novel Book III
by Mel Favreau
Genre Paranormal Romance
Tags Werewolves, weretigers, werebears, succubus, incubus, demigods, goddess, gods, creators, Native Americans
Editor Gloria Oren
Line Editor Judy Roth
Cover Designer Cora Graphics
It had been more than twenty years since he’d last seen his wife. Twenty years of searching with connections spanning from the military to the secret organization, The Guardians. Nothing. Forced to retire early from the military to take care of his two young children, Peyton Maynard did what he had to do to raise his young family.
Becoming a Guardian, policing paranormal, supernatural, and preternatural beings offered him the flexibility to be the hands-on father he needed to be. Blessed with the gift of precognitive dreams served him well, except where it came to Kit. He never saw her come into his life and never saw her leave. But she still haunted his dreams.
Kit had gone by a variety of names—hiding from a man with the connections her husband had was difficult. But to protect her family from her true identity, she had to leave. Pretending to be human in a world that wasn’t ready to accept her, Kit survived the only way possible.
Coming face-to-face once again with the love of her life was terrifying and bittersweet all at once. But could Kit overcome the abandonment issues of her children and fix what had been destroyed?Could she make them understand she’d left in order to protect them?
Was she ready to make the ultimate sacrifice to keep them and their secrets safe?
Amber shifted her body weight toward Casey, apparently reading a signal that Kit hadn’t. Turning, the Tigress planted herself in front and had her hands on Casey’s shoulders.
“Don’t do this, you’ll regret it,” Amber murmured.
Casey’s lip lifted in a sneer. Her emerald eyes were dark with anger. “Why now?” came her terse question.
“It wasn’t her doing, baby-doll,” Peyton said, taking a step closer.
Shaking her head, she looked at Braedyn. “Take him outside please. I want to talk to her.”
Kit felt her heart thrum in her throat when Peyton grabbed her arm and tugged her close for a moment. She closed her eyes, taking what comfort she could before pulling away.
“I’ll stand on the porch, but you stay inside,” Peyton said to Braedyn.
The Alpha nodded and crossed his arms, standing near. Again Kit had a feeling it was for her protection as well. Swallowing, she tried to battle her tears before turning back to her children.
“Your father found me,” Kit managed after a moment. Her voice wasn’t as shaky as she’d feared it would be. “I promise you, I tried to stay away. But I’ve nowhere to go.”
Shaking her head again, Casey pulled back from Amber and turned to look into the fireplace.
Kit searched Dean’s expression. She had no idea where to start. There was no apology, nothing that could be said to soothe the pain seen in their eyes. She was the mother who’d abandoned them. Looking at Dean, Kit could see a glimpse of the ten-year-old boy she’d left behind.
Tears rolled down her cheeks. Clearing her throat, she brushed them away.
“You left us,” Dean said. His voice was husky, full of pain.
She wished taking him into her arms would solve everything, but he wasn’t the child she’d known. Dean was now a man who rivaled his father in size. “I did. It was for your safety. I was foolish to think I could continue to live a lie and for far longer than I should have. I was putting you all in danger. And my being here now is far worse.” She turned back to Braedyn. “I have no right to ask this of you.”
“You didn’t, Peyton did,” the Alpha said with a shake of his head. “So it is out of your hands.”
Kit shook her head and squared her shoulders. “I can’t do this to them. I wouldn’t do it then, and I refuse to do it now. This is my fight, not theirs.”
“Yeah walk away, it’s what you do best, apparently,” Casey growled. Her hands were interlocked behind her back.
Clenching her fist, she turned back to her daughter, feeling a flash of anger. “You might not understand my actions right this moment…but in a few months when you hold your child…you will know there is nothing more important than their safety. Even if it means protecting them with your life.”
Casey whirled away from the fireplace. Her eyes flashed golden, and she charged a few steps. “Don’t lay that shit on me. I don’t need mothering tips from a whore.”
The words were a slap across the face. They stung, bringing tears to her eyes. “You’re right, those few years weren’t enough for me to be able to give advice,” she choked out.
Kit had been given the answer she needed. She wasn’t welcome.
Clearing her throat, she turned to Braedyn. “Thank you for the offer, but I can see it’s not going to work.” Glancing back at Dean, she saw his eyes shimmer with unshed tears, but he remained still. The waves of anger and hurt drifted from Casey in such rapid succession, Kit was almost overcome. She pulled open the door, stepped out onto the porch, and was surprised to find Amber right behind her.
“Let’s take my vehicle,” she directed, pointing to the enormous SUV.
“What are you doing?” Kit asked when the small woman grabbed her by the arm.
Peyton moved to follow, and the brunette shook her head. “No, you stay,” she warned briskly.
“Amber, what the hell are you doing?” Casey boomed from the porch.
“Something you won’t. I’m protecting her one way or another,” the Tigress said, turning to her friend.
“You’d protect that…thing?”
“Yeah…someone has to.”
In horror Kit watched the rage that contorted her daughter’s face before she leapt the porch rail, too quick for Braedyn or Dean to stop her. She shifted midair, landing with such grace for the size of her wolf.
Amber shoved Kit out of the way before turning to face the Silver One.
Mouth open and fangs bared, a deep growl rolled across the snow. There were shouts as the men tried to figure out how to best apprehend her.
Raising her hands, the tiny brunette stared directly into the wolf’s eyes. “We whores have to stick together Casey. We don’t make good motherly material.”
Shock registered on the wolf’s face, her knees almost buckled. A low sound came from her throat, followed by a soft whine.
“When you’re ready to come down off your high-horse, Goddess, you know how to find me. Until then I offer my services for your mother’s protection.” She looked at Braedyn who gave a quick nod of assent. Without turning to Kit, Amber said, “Get in my truck.”
Without hesitation, she opened the door and climbed into the passenger seat. A quick scan of everyone present, Kit saw surprise and shock on each face.
What have I done?
Amber turned and climbed into the driver’s seat and started it up. The Silver Wolf stood there, unmoving, staring in her eyes.
Finally, Kit allowed the tears she’d been struggling to hold back to fall and covered her face. This was not what she’d wanted.