Sage is haunted by vivid dreams, while Aries, tied to the powerful Ram constellation, faces his own intense struggles. Their connection sizzles, filled with heat and heart. As they face their deepest fears and biggest challenges, their love grows stronger. Will this fiery passion lead them to an unforgettable destiny? Get ready for a ride full of excitement and heart-pounding romance!
In this endeavor, as with all endeavors, timing was everything.
Hades had waited for this day. He knew the stars had to be in alignment. The attention of the rest of the Gods had to rest elsewhere and most importantly, the 13th constellation had to be at its weakest. Only then would he be able to capture it.
Despite its struggling and flailing, Hades dragged it down from the sky to his kingdom beneath the earth just as he had taken Persephone from the gaze of her mother.
Then, just as he had caged Persephone, he caged the 13th constellation.
Granted, its prison was not so fair as Persephone’s. She was the love of Hades’ life. The 13th constellation was simply a source of power and required no kindness or consideration on Hades’ part. It had a use.
Hades knew that all of the constellations had been reborn, save two. Scorpio, and Taurus, beloved of Aphrodite. Hades wasn’t surprised that Taurus had not been allowed reincarnation.
Aphrodite had so many children and aspects it was a wonder she could keep track of them at all.
After the last failure, when the two constellations vanished up into the sky and the rest of them fell out of reach, Hades had put together a new plan. A better one.
Without so many moving parts, it would be easier to achieve his goal. Taurus was unnecessary. He’d been a little more than an accessory to Scorpio in the first place.
So, Hades held the tatters of Scorpio’s soul in his fist until the exact right moment, when the power of the 13th constellation could be channeled into a physical body for his… Assistant.
Hades had never been particularly fond of the constellations. They were dangerous, a threat to himself and all like him.
The Olympians had destroyed the bull and the scorpion for daring to attack them, but Hades was in the business of using dead things for his own devices. A newly-risen chess piece was just as good as any other.
Hades wove the magic, spinning it through his fingers and smirking as the thing in the cage howled in outrage. As though it had a single hope of stopping him.
Hades was nearly out of time when his little servant came into being as though rising from a grave.
He was just as beautiful as he had been in his previous life: tall and tight muscled, with hair dark as the river Styx and eyes green as envy. He laid still as a corpse, barely breathing.
“Get up,” Hades ordered. Scorpio pushed himself up onto his hands, new muscles trembling with effort.
Hades let him suffer and squirm in silence for a moment. Scorpio had failed Hades, during his last life.
“On your feet.”
Scorpio stood, swaying. Hades was reminded of sapling trees rattling in the winter wind, and wanted to swat the boy to one side, just to see if he would turn to vapor.
“I will give you a chance to redeem yourself,” he said. Scorpio flinched. Hades reached out and grabbed him by the chin.
There was more fear in his face than there had been before. Good.
“You will not fail me again,” Hades said. It went without saying that failure was not an option.
“What do you need me to do?” Scorpio asked.
“Find the girl,” he said, releasing Scorpio’s face. “Bring her to me. Unmolested, and unharmed, is that clear? I don’t care about the methods.”
“Yes,” Scorpio bowed his head and walked away.
Scorpio would be his knife in the dark, cutting the girl away from her place in the world and the stars. She would be brought before him, and she would serve her use.
By the time any of the Olympians realized they were being destroyed, it would be too late for them to save themselves.
Sage stared out into the trees, chin resting on her folded arms. Nightmares again, last night.
She kept waking up gasping for air, terrified of cruel hands grabbing at her body, or trembling with the sticky sensation of half-dried blood on her skin.
Her father kept telling her it wasn’t a big deal, that nightmares were just a normal part of ‘growing up.’
He acted as though Sage wasn’t already nearly twenty, and far too old to be frightened of imaginary sensations and dangers.
With a sigh, she pushed herself away from the windowsill and turned to her bedroom.
She grabbed a windbreaker and headed downstairs. Her father and his mate were at the kitchen table playing cards.
“Heading out?” Rick asked, smiling up at her.
“Yeah,” she nodded, moving to wrap her arms around his shoulders in a hug.
Rick was her biological father, and had brought her home from her mother’s family when she was young.
Her half-sisters had been intolerably cruel, her mother was distant, and her stepfather despised her. By the time Sage was eight, she’d all but begged to be taken away.
Sage knew now that the stipulation Rick needed to meet in order to bring her to the pack was a steady homelife with a mate.
Jamerson had hoisted her up onto his hip, kissed her head, and promised she’d never have to come back. That he and Rick had a house and a room for her, and the rest of her family was there, so she wouldn’t be lonely.
Her home with the Fire Moon Pack was infinitely better.
“Don’t wander too far,” Jamerson said, laying down his cards and smirking. Rick groaned, and Sage laughed.
“Don’t tell me you’re playing for money,” she said.
“Chores,” Jamerson said, cocking his eyebrow at Rick. “You’re on laundry duty, babe.”
“Fine, fine,” Rick sighed, pushing up from his chair and nudging Sage towards the door.
“See if you can find your brother out there somewhere. He said he was taking Juliet out to play for a while.”
“I bet he took Romeo with him,” Sage sing-songed. “I’ll check on him. I’ll be back later, Rick!”
Sage tucked her hands into her pockets as she headed out the door.
Elijah would have taken Juliet to the playground, and she had no doubts Romeo was with them.
Maybe talking to Elijah would help. Sage had been keeping her nightmares to herself, but they were starting to make sleeping next to impossible.
On top of that was Aries Astrofengiá, who was an entirely different kind of problem.
Just seeing his face was enough to ruin Sage’s day, and she had no idea why.
Of course, he was promiscuous and shameless but then again so was Gemini, and she didn’t hate him.
Somehow, Aries being unwilling to keep his dick in his pants was so irritating it made her skin itch. She didn’t even like him all that much.
How did it make any sense at all for her to be… What, possessive of him?
It wasn’t that she wanted him. She just wanted him to stop acting like he was going to die if he didn’t have someone gagging for him every minute of the day. And she wanted everyone else to stop gagging for it.
When she tried to talk to Rick about it, he always laughed and said something like ‘playground crushes.’
He talked about how Sage and Aries had been at one another’s throats since they were kids, pulling pigtails and bickering.
He made it sound like she and Aries were somehow meant to be.
Scowling, Sage shook her long, dark hair out of her eyes and headed for the playground.