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Her Viking Wolves(10)

By:Theodora Taylor



But three planes and a half-mile trek on ice skates after being ordered to suck it up and marry my gay fiancé, I arrive at their front door like, SURPRISE!

Okay, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. It’s actually impossible to show up for a surprise visit to the royal Alaska family. In fact Aunt Wilma, my father’s sister, not only sends a small plane to fetch me when I call her from the Fairbanks airport, but she and her entire clan, including her husband, the Alpha King of Alaska, their three daughters, their husbands, and their small children, are all waiting for me on the pier.

Still, Aunt Wilma looks real alarmed when I skate up.

“What’s going on?” she demands, pushing her way to the front of the small crowd of Alaska relatives. “Are you okay? Is my brother okay?”

“Should I get Ford?” her much shorter Inuit husband, King Tikaani, asks.#p#分页标题#e#

Ford is Wilford, Aunt Wilma’s other brother—my uncle—who according to family legend, came to the wilds of Alaska to serve as Uncle Tikaani’s beta over three decades ago. I wouldn’t know for sure, since I’ve never met the dude or the son he had out here with his Inuit mate.

“Everyone’s fine,” I assure her quickly.

Cue the crickets as the Alaska king and queen stare at me, along with the gaggle of cousins, spouses, and offspring.

“Then why are you here?” she finally asks. “I don’t understand. Wasn’t your engagement party yesterday? Your father said—”

“Yeah, I know what he said,” I answer. “But the engagement’s off.”

Aunt Wilma crooks her head like, say what now?

“You trying to tell me Wilton let the North Dakota prince call off your wedding?”

Gotta love how Aunt Wilma went straight to assuming Kyle was the one who backed out of marrying me. And she sounds so insulted by the prospect, I half suspect she’s about ready to send Uncle Ford down to North Dakota to “talk” to the North Dakota royals on my behalf. You can take the thug princess out of Detroit and plant her in one of the most well-regarded and civilized wolf kingdoms in the North American territories, but…

“No…” I answer her. My eyes travel to their three-story, yellow cedar kingdom house with intricately carved totem poles on either side of the massive front door. A mountain looms behind the beautiful structure, with yellow cedar houses pebbling both sides of the main road leading up to it.

This is the total opposite of our kingdom house in Hidden Hills, where instead of going to a mountain on full moon nights, we lock the iron gates that lead into our gated community and run free. In fact, the shifter town of Wolf Lake is so pastoral, it feels like I’ve just stepped into a postcard.

Welcome to Alaska, I think as I admit to Aunt Wilma, “I called it off.”

The shocked looks that come over all of their faces is so instantaneous, I can almost hear them catching their collective breath. Which I totally get.

See, most state princesses from nice, normal kingdoms wouldn’t have the nerve to call off their engagements. But my dad is Wilton “Muthafuckin’” Greenwolf, the alpha king of a pack that has at least fifty different rituals (read: excuses) for killing a shifter.

I can just about hear Aunt Wilma’s mind trying to figure out if I’m crazy, suicidal, or both as the cold Alaska wind blows through the space between me and her family.

Then my crazy cousin, Tu—the one who insists on perceiving my Detroit accent and lack of social skills as some form of “keeping it real”—chooses that moment to crow into the shocked silence, “See, this is why I like Tee! She is so hardcore.”





4





Myrna was wrong about Olafr being unable to serve because he was ever the wolf. In fact, the only reason the village does not fall instantly is because he is ever the wolf.

He soon finds he was correct to fear the coming of this enemy for nearly all his two-and-thirty winters.

The serpents…monsters…whatever they be are unlike any he has ever heard tale of. Varying in their dark colors, he spots creatures red as blood, green as wet moss, blue as a winter’s night, and black as a North Wolf’s shadow falling upon ebony rock. Each stands on four lizard-like legs higher than his father’s longhouse, and when they give voice, the sound rends the air as a hot screech, with a killing spray of fire spitting out from their mouths with every roar.

Though there be but a small number of these monstrous creatures, the village warriors quickly begin to fall.#p#分页标题#e#

Armed mostly with clubs and spears, they find the monsters’ skin to be near impervious. Even those who get close enough to strike find their weapons bouncing off the enemy’s skin. The warrior often having earned nothing but an answering fire, under which he and many other North Wolves do gruesomely burn.

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