Captured by the Wolven (Coveted Prey #10.5) Read Online L.V. Lane

Categories Genre: Fantasy/Sci-fi, Paranormal, Romance Tags Authors: Series: Coveted Prey Series by L.V. Lane
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Total pages in book: 14
Estimated words: 12395 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 62(@200wpm)___ 50(@250wpm)___ 41(@300wpm)
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I was only six when I first met the monster in my wood. Wolven were a beastly kind of dire wolf that walked on two legs. Larger and more ferocious than a wolf shifter, if even some tales about them were true, my fate was desperate.

Only my monster was none of those things.
He let me nestle upon his lap where he listened to my stories.
Until one day, he disappeared, and I never saw him again.
Many years passed, and war consumed our lands.
Fleeing for my life after an attack on my village, my sweet monster rescued me… at least I thought he did.
Then he told me the truth.
“Foolish human,” he says in a deep, rumbly voice. “I wasn’t rescuing you. I was capturing you for myself.”

Publisher’s Note: Captured by the Wolven is a standalone short story set in the Coveted Prey universe. Formerly published as part of the Into the Woods anthology, it features size difference and a naughty-talking monster determined to claim his fated mate!

Full Book:

Prologue

Ivy

North of our village is a path that leads into Hopton Wood. If you walk too far, you’ll find yourself in Blackwood, so named because the trees have black bark.

A young lad named Peter, who lived two doors down, took to playing in Blackwood, catching frogs, and other things. The problem with Blackwood is that it holds pathways into another world. You might think you’re walking through Blackwood, but you’ve already crossed to another realm full of monsters, fairies, goblins, centaurs, bears that can shift into humans, and humans that can change into wolves. All manner of creature lives in Blackwood. Occasionally, children wander into places they shouldn’t, like Peter, who disappeared last autumn and was never seen again.

I wouldn’t go into Blackwood, not me. I’m a good girl who helps my mother with chores and rarely misbehaves.

Today the sun is bright as I walk all the way through Hopton Wood until I find myself at the boundary. Opposite me, the trees have the unmistakable black bark. My tummy gets full of jitters just thinking about how close I am... like I might see a monster... Mama says the beastly beings who live there can’t come out, but I still feel a dangerous kind of thrill. I shouldn’t be here. I’m not usually one for courting danger, but something draws me.

I wonder about the other world mere paces away. It’s warm so I get comfortable sitting on a grassy bank in the shade of a giant oak tree. Resting my head against the tree trunk, I straighten out my dress and let my eyes drift shut. I imagine having an adventure on the other side of the boundary and making friends with a wolf. He would be my best friend and protect me from the other monsters while we play together. As I submerge into the dreamscape, something tickles my hand, and my eyes flutter open to find a pretty, blue butterfly sitting there.

I smile, until movement on my periphery catches my eye. I freeze finding a beast staring back at me. Is he a wolf? I blink. Am I still dreaming?

No, he cannot possibly be a wolf, for he stands on two feet. He doesn’t approach, seeming equally transfixed by me, and slowly, I sit up a little straighter, my heart racing wildly as I realize a distance separates us of no more than twenty paces.

“What are you?” I ask.

He doesn’t answer, just stares at me with an unnerving stillness. Could he leap across and eat me?

Wolven.

I have heard the village elders speak of them on story nights. Certainly, he is large enough to be one, easily twice my size, with thick shaggy black fur that glistens in the dappled sunlight, and amber eyes that shine bright against the blackness of the wood. He is magnificent, like a wolf standing on two feet, impossibly broad shouldered, and surely powerful underneath his fur.

Then I notice his big bushy tail swing from side to side. I smile. “You are so beautiful,” I say a little wistfully, wanting very much to pet him.

He chuffs, and I laugh, deciding he can understand me.

“How did you get here?” I ask as he sits down opposite me and leans against the tree in a mirror of me.

He shakes his head.

I frown. “You should go back,” I say. "If the villagers saw you, even as strong as you obviously are, they would hunt you down and kill you.”

He makes the funny chuffing noise again, making me think he does not fear the villagers or their pitchforks.

The butterfly that tickled my hand now dances upon the light breeze from one flower to the next, drifting towards the Wolven. I hold my breath wondering if it will disappear if it tries to cross the boundary between our worlds.

As it settles on his ankle, I swallow.


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