Tempest of Vengeance

Promise Me - Book 11

by Tara Fox Hall

A chain of tragic events cumulating in the shattering of the magical “dream bond” between Theo and Sar turns the lovers against one another, as Ulysses attacks from all fronts, hoping to destroy Devlin for good. The return of Lash reignites the fire between he and Sar, even as he saves her daughter Elle from certain death. Finally joined under Oath, Lash, Devlin, and Sar face the storm of Ulysses’s wrath, knowing it will take their combined strength and courage to save all they love from his tempest of vengeance.


Chapter One


I woke still clinging to Devlin, all my strong resolve of the previous night gone like so much thin fog evaporated by the harsh light of dawn.

Danial, my Danial, had been delivered to the front gate of Hayden a drained corpse. Now my always perfect and proper vampire lay unconscious and unresponsive just down the hall, watched over by Devlin’s demon, Titus. Danial was just the latest casualty in Devlin’s war with Ulysses, the brother of one of his former “turns” who’d died at the end of some vampire hunter’s stake. He almost certainly wouldn’t be the last.

Last night, after a monster fight with Devlin—and a lot of cutting words neither of us had truly meant—I’d decided to leave Hayden and go back to living with Danial. Sure, this step seemed like just another tawdry chapter in my imperfect, supernaturally-influenced life of trading one handsome superhuman man for another, but at the time, it had seemed like the most rational decision. Theo, my husband by law, had his hands full with keeping our young werecougar son Devon safe from this tempest of vengeance that Ulysses was wreaking on Devlin and all of his allies. There was also the question of his new sex partner, Jenny, a recent werecougar herself via Theo’s bite, which he had dispensed to save her from the ravages of late stage cancer. Our resulting “threesome” was its own messy tangle, one I’d have to sort out later. I had enough to worry about right now.

Everything had been going well until this fall, when a moonlight bike ride for Devlin and I had ended in us both being taken prisoner of Ulysses. While I’d been unharmed, Devlin had been tortured terribly, something that still scarred him psychologically if not physically. Lash, Devlin’s right hand man—actually weresnake—had arrived in time to save Devlin and wreak his own vengeance, but the cost had been speeding up his own demise, even with eliminating many of Ulysses’ men and an older vampire lover of Devlin’s—Catherine—who had allied herself with him. I had been the one to step in at the 11th hour to save Lash with my blood, but had paid my own price of temporarily losing my vampirically-enhanced abilities, and possibly accentuating my demon-taint, something I was worried about. According to my doctor, I was human now, probably more human than I’d been in years. I should have been enthused about that, but I wasn’t. I’d gotten used to being able to teleport, heal minor injuries with ease, and other cool abilities like seeing in dim light as if it were bright daylight. Who wanted to be human when all it did was make you more vulnerable?

I did feel vulnerable, even here in the arms of my golden-haired god of a vampire who’d sworn on his life to protect me. Everything had gone wrong, like dominos knocking into one another in a huge pattern whose ultimate design I couldn’t fathom. Terian, a friend with unrequited feelings for me, had turned from part to full demon, nearly assaulting me, and spending months in magical recovery before recently emerging with a fraction of the power of his old self. Lash was serving a month in prison because of a misunderstanding with human police that had stopped just short of murder. Several of Devlin’s employees had been killed and skinned, among them a recent friend, the werewolf housekeeper Robin. My son, Theoron had been beaten and left for dead, escaping only by the thinnest of margins. Now Danial, my Danial, might be lost to me, if he didn’t awaken soon from the coma he was in.

Earlier this morning, Devlin had spoken of war, and pledged to not only kill Ulysses, but also to bring Danial back to us. While I knew how much Devlin loved his brother, I wasn’t sure he had the power to bring Danial back. A massive “transfusion” of Devlin’s blood had saved Danial’s life last night. But it hadn’t been enough to waken him. Devlin had been badly weakened as a result, so he wouldn’t be able to do that again anytime soon. Ulysses, so far, had remained not only out of Devlin’s grasp, but also beyond the reach of all the other powerful vampires of the Ruling class.

I had always been an optimist, even in the times of my life when tragedy had struck me down like a pine sapling before a Cat 5 hurricane. However, Devlin’s warning that things would get worse before they got better felt like the footsteps of doom for me.

As if sensing my fear, Devlin stirred in my arms, pulling back slightly to look down at me. “I’m glad you’re with me,” he whispered. “This is not a good morning. But it would be worse if I did not have you here beside me, Sar.”

I bit my lip, and swallowed hard. “I’m scared, Dev.”

“You’ll be safe here,” he assured me with a chaste kiss on my brow. He got out of bed, then put on his robe.

“I’m scared for Danial.”

"Tempest of Vengeance" by Tara Fox Hall



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