Badge by Ellen Mint
Book 4 in the Coven of Desire series
General Release Date: 21st June 2022
Word Count: 80,841
Book Length: SUPER NOVEL
ANGELS AND DEMONS
MÉNAGE AND MULTIPLE PARTNERS
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They’ve found her.
Layla’s life is a mess. Thanks to Ink’s big mouth, Cal knows that she knows about the big red wolf, and he is pissed. She can’t find a way to bring Daniel back from death and even worse, Ink seems to think that’s the perfect time to dissolve their bond. Naturally, the second she’s abandoned by her guys, the witch hunters strike.
After yet another argument between his bond and her wolf, Ink’s grown exhausted with their arrangement. He has every intention to break their bond and return to his old hunting ways, until Layla goes missing at the hands of his greatest enemy. If they harm her, he’s on a one-way trip back to hell. Enraged, Ink enlists the help of both wolf and ghost to try and track her down. But the cursed hunters have learned. Anti-demon wards cover every surface of their underground lair. His only hope to save her is by wearing a cloak of mortality.
For the first time in his existence, Ink not only knows pain but the true threat of death.
When Layla arrives in the Witch Hunters’ bureau, Detective Stone comes to her not with a torch, but a job offer. If she doesn’t agree to work with them, then she’ll die. How will she escape from a trap-filled dungeon crammed with already captured monsters? Are her guys hunting for her, or is she truly alone? And why does Stone make her blood boil in all the wrong ways?
If she gets out of this alive, there will be hell to pay.
Reader advisory: This book contains scenes of violence, and a dream scene including dubious consent.
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A hand pierced the grave, shattering the witch’s pentagram as it strained for the sky. Lightning crackled through the dark clouds above, the fully emerged arm somehow perfectly lit despite the night around it. While the sorceress cackled in glee, the dirt fell away, revealing a face of ashen pallor with minor skin inflammation and a withered nose.
“Ah, he suffers from the great pox,” I said aloud, and a shushing broke from the blubbery lips beside me. There was no doubt a person was attached to said flopping skin bags, but I could not discern them in the darkness. The air bulged with barely coherent desires, the shadow in the chair beside me wishing only for my death.
A shame, for after two thousand years I had yet to ascertain any way to cause such an end. I began to lean over the divider keeping us separate, when a palm graced my knee.
The chasteness of the touch nearly caused me to chuckle, when my bond whispered, “Watch the movie.”
I folded my arms. Having already dispatched the box of chocolate balls, I had grown bored of this display of flickering images ten minutes in. I tipped my head to her, spotting the blond locks of the wolf to her other side. He seemed to be enraptured with the tinny trite, a full fist of popcorn raised to his mouth. I intended to tell her I’d had my fill, when her eyes darted to me.
Please let me enjoy this.
Her desires did not require my talent of reading through the colored fogs surrounding the gray mass of humanity. I felt her request singing through every nerve and a smile replaced my smirk. Taking her hand, I raised it to my lips and whispered against her knuckles, “As you wish.”
She rubbed my knee once more and left her palm upon my thigh. The greens and purples of the giant screen reflected off her fingers, each digit delicate and also hard as stone. She’d chipped a nail recently, no doubt the damn specter’s doing. I clasped my hand over the back of hers and held tight when a finger jabbed into my shoulder.
The wolf had raised his hand from Layla’s shoulders in order to prod me. “This is the best part,” he said in a harried but exuberant voice.
I jerked my gaze to the grumbling guardian of silence beside me, but it remained resolutely still. I see, so Calvin can speak whenever he wishes, but I must be held to a higher standard. Humans never could wrap their minds around the concept of justice.
Rather than pick a fight, I turned my gaze to the screen. The syphilitic man was moaning, no doubt from the pain he now found in urinating. Around him circled the sorceress, her silver cloak flapping in a wind that did not move the trees in the background. She spoke gibberish Latin and lightning lit up the white sky. In an instant, all of the graves cracked open like elevator doors and people climbed out.
“Is she attempting to build an army of undead?” I scoffed. “No villain worth their salt would waste time with such a foolish plan. You have, at most, three days before rot causes your army to bloat, then explode. Even less in the summer.”
“Will you shut the hell up?” My neighbor greatly disapproved of my logic, even if it was sound. Humans were basically walking candles—one light and the whole of the army would go up in smoke, leaving the sorceress alone and awkward on the battlefield.
“Ink…” Layla leaned closer to me when the man with the pox leaped forward and bit off the sorceress’ nose. As I said, a very foolish endeavor. My smug righteousness only lasted a moment when Layla gasped and clung tight to my leg.
My heartbeat increased with hers, a flush of those endorphins she devoted her study to rushing from her to me. While the undead man crunched on the offscreen sorceress’ body, my bond turned to look at me. Pink tinged the soft tan of her cheeks, the dark depths of her eyes wide in shock.
She glanced to where her nails tried to dig through my flesh and blanched. “Sorry,” Layla said, but before she could retract her hand, I pressed it tighter.
“You need never apologize for that,” I said, catching her chin. I pulled her closer and whispered against her lips, “I am built for your punishment.”
The kiss sent a wave of spicy pink desire through me. It radiated down my tongue, encouraging said nimble organ to toy with Layla’s lip. As I plunged deeper and tasted of her mouth, the desire pulsing from her transformed to a sultry fuchsia. I let my touch land on her shoulder, all manner of horrific undead attacks forgotten. Each traipse of my fingers winding down the ribbons on her blouse toward her breast sent a touch of satiety through me. It was little more than a bite, a nibble really, but the fuel fed my fire.
Layla’s wily hand had found itself trailing up my thigh then retreating. She fought the internal war far too many of my prey carried the mantle for. What I desire versus what society deems proper. Ever at odds, never satisfactory. The whole concept of morality had been invented to keep people anxious, unsatisfied and in search of a cold bath. But within my bond, the electric desire was winning out.
I took her breast in my hand and Layla bit down to silence her moan. That seemed to shatter the mood and she froze, causing my elaborate dance to pause as well. “Ink, we should…”
“Take advantage of the flickering ambience of mutilated corpses in this foreboding dungeon?” I whispered, tucking back her hair and tracing around her ear. She closed her eyes, lost in the simple pleasure of my touch.
Alas, it was my neighbor who once again could not cease to thrust himself into my affairs. “Will you shut your fucking mouth already?”
I scoffed and shook my head. “No. I do not believe I shall, and you are the better for it.”
The man, for his visage grew more evident in the rising light of the screen, folded his hand into a fist. He popped it up as if he intended to knock my teeth out, which only caused me to smile. Whatever nerve he thought to have had fled, and the man rose and abandoned his seat in the back of this darkened theater. As he stomped his feet and cursed under his breath, his shadow cast over the screen, hiding away the funeral march.
“Down in front,” I called to his retreating form.
“Now you’ve done it.” The cursed specter slipped into the vacated seat, proving I was never afforded a moment of peace in this world. He managed to look smug despite being without a body and forced to stand in the aisle.
“What? You think he will challenge me to a duel? Even with two of his sturdiest gentlemen at his side, it will be nothing more than a jumping behind the pub.”
The ghost only stared ahead, not saying a word to me, but his eyes flickered to Layla who was quickly losing the thread of desire. That would not do. I had seen little of her in the past week, though I’d had more than my share of the vagrant ghost we’d acquired. Whenever I would reach for her, either the wolf or the dead man would be there first. Typically, I could work with such a scenario, but the ghost was without form and the wolf…
I sighed, staring askance at the man doing his best to ignore his own animalistic urges and the tenting in his trousers. What everyone needed was to break this tension with a day-long celebration of the joy only three bodies could bring. The ghost could sit and watch for all I cared.
“My bond.” I pulled aside her spirals and breathed heavily in her ear. That sent the heat rolling once more and she clenched her fingers tighter to my thigh. “Why hesitate?”
Her deep eyes opened wide and she stared as if in shock that I could yet read her mind. “I know…” Gently, I dropped my finger to the top of her cleavage.
“What you truly…” I swept it down between her breasts and over her belly.
Where her thighs split, I clutched onto her skirt, and began to raise it. “Desire.”
Layla squirmed in her seat, her eyelids heavy as she succumbed to my logical charisma. I abandoned any prelude of remaining in my seat and turned to press my cock against her thigh. She struggled to fight a gasp and I drew my touch up the hot spread of her underthings. I never needed to test if she was wet, but I quite liked the glide of the proof of my pull and how she flexed to let me in.
As I tugged aside the edge of her panties, I leaned into her ear. “Go on,” I whispered, toying with the succulent lady lip at my finger. “Tug on him.”
The wolf turned, his eyes blazing with a hunger I knew he too was fighting and failing to ignore. For him, it ran either burning red or muted yellow. Tonight, it burned hotter than the flames of Hades. Cal took Layla’s cheek and pulled her in for a kiss just as she reached for the waistband of his jeans…and slipped under. His groan trembled through my hunger, smelling of a feast but failing to satisfy. I paid it barely any heed, Layla’s response to him far more delectable.
Her body burned with a rising tide of desire, and my innocent little flick of the bean wouldn’t do. I abandoned the seats entirely and took a knee to the floor. The wolf was trying to not thrust his hips in his seat even as he rolled a hand over Layla’s breast and panted. Their deep kiss broke and she looked at me in shock.
“What are you doing?”
“I’d think it’d be rather obvious,” I answered. Her heart thundered like a rain of timpani. I wrapped my hands under her thighs, clenched her hips and pulled her to my mouth. The underthings meant nothing to the slip of my tongue or the press of my lips. I licked and sucked around, under and over them, soaking her already drenched panties to total saturation. Layla raised her leg and placed it on my shoulder. As she did, Cal reached over to run his hand over her thigh and lift it higher.
Her hand worked fast under his jeans, bringing the unresolved tension to a proper crescendo. I too felt the swell inside, the only way I knew sex to feel. The slumbering hunger sharpened its fangs, my metaphorical mouth drooling while my literal one supped upon the beautiful woman’s clit. She arched her back, pressing more of herself to me and pulling her head down the chair.
I glanced up a moment, delighted by the response, when I spotted the ghost standing behind watching. No, he was whispering words to her, no doubt ones stolen from better men. But they seemed to be working to bring Layla to a frenzy. I dipped deeper, every pulse of my tongue filling my body with the strength of a dozen men.
When she began to clench, nearing her climax, my first instinct was to stop. Not in pleasuring her—that I could do for days without end. No, I nearly paused in pulling her energy lest I take too much. But that was the joy of taking a witch to bed—there was never an end. Her magic fed me, letting me feast without risking her loss.
“Ink…” Layla whimpered. With one hand, she clung to the wolf’s impressive John Thomas. With the other, she wrenched on my hair, ordering me to finish her off. Gladly.
I dipped back for the last taste that’d fill me to bursting when a bright light blinded me. Blinking against the harsh rays that highlighted the nearly empty theater seats ahead of us, I turned to find a man not yet old enough for a hair on his chin dressed in a crimson uniform with his arms crossed and a glower on.
“Hello, my good man,” I said, rising to my feet. He flinched as I held my hand out to him. “Would you care to join us?”
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About the Author
Ellen Mint adores the adorkable heroes who charm with their shy smiles and heroines that pack a punch. She recently won the Top Ten Handmaid’s Challenge on Wattpad where hers was chosen by Margaret Atwood. Her books, Undercover Siren and Fever are available at Amazon as well as a short story in the Lucky Between The Sheets anthology. Married, she lives in Nebraska with her dog named after Granny Weatherwax. Her hobbies include gaming, painting, and halloween prop making. The basement is full of skeletons because they ran out of room in the closets.
You can find Ellen at her website here and also on Bookbub.
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