Title: Raised by Wolves
Series: Surviving Vihaan, Book Two
Author: Elaine White
Publisher: NineStar Press
Release Date: 05/16/2023
Heat Level: 3 – Some Sex
Genre: Paranormal, MM romance, action/adventure, Alpha males, bonded, wolf shifters, disability
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Bad news always comes in threes.
As do the hits that knock Keon’s perfectly laid plans into chaos. His no-good brother conducted a hostile takeover of their pack, became Alpha, and got killed in the space of a year. Grief has crippled their father, leaving Beta Weston desperate for Keon’s return, as Simeon’s last act as Alpha was to name Keon his successor.
Leaving his friends is heartbreaking. Arriving home to a hostile pack is unsurprising. But finding a rival pack hovering on the boundaries of his land, vying for blood, could be a problem. With Simeon dead, they don’t seem to care which Alpha bleeds for the crimes.
With no other choice, Keon shoulders the burden of being Alpha. Fighting, bleeding, and sacrificing.
As a new Alpha, he needs to prove himself to get the respect needed for them to accept change…like dragging Vihaan into the 21st century. On the top of the list is finding a mate. But who would want to mate an Alpha whose own pack doesn’t respect him?
Raised by Wolves
Elaine White © 2023
All Rights Reserved
Seven Months Ago
Alpha Thatcher’s Pack
E’Boolou Region, Vihaan
He always knew this day would come. Thatcher was too old and selfish to fight his own challenges, but part of Milo had naïvely presumed it would be Usher standing in his place. Or one of his many other brothers, who were better fighters.
But Milo supposed that was the point. This wasn’t about the challenge. This was about punishing Milo, because the Fates had given him a male true mate. This was a reminder of his place in the pack, in the world.
Every challenge was to the death, and if Milo died, he doubted his father, Thatcher, would spare a second thought. The loss of Milo’s gift would be a small price if he could give the pack this important lesson―there would be no gaoj tolerated in Thatcher’s pack or his family.
It didn’t matter that Milo hadn’t asked to be born gaoj―someone attracted to the same sex. The fact he was would be enough of an insult to Thatcher’s opinion on what made a man a man.
Beating each other bloody counted, apparently. With not even the Meskli to preside, as was usually the case.
Alpha Farley was a m’weko, but as the Meskli, he was a neutral party who governed within Vihaan. Settling disputes and resolving problems between packs, villages, and species of foame―those half-human who could call forth a beast form. He wasn’t a man to disobey and held tight to tradition.
No, waiting for the Meskli would mean prying eyes and someone willing to―and with the power to―interfere on Milo’s behalf.
He didn’t recognise his opponent, and Thatcher hadn’t bothered to tell Milo what this challenge was about. What dispute or grievance required the shedding of blood. A secret part of him wondered if the problem had been fabricated purely to punish him. Milo would put nothing past his father.
The moment the challenger stepped forward―a brute of a man, made of muscle―Milo’s nerves shook. He tried to hide it, summoning long buried memories of his most hated brothers, bullying and goading him, from his childhood. The only way he’d survive this was to remember one important thing―he’d rather spend an eternity in reedav than let his father win. An afterlife in Vihaan’s version of hell would be worth the chance to make his father suffer.
As long as Milo remained breathing by the end of the fight, it would be enough. He’d drag himself to his home, with his insides hanging out, if it meant denying Thatcher the satisfaction of seeing him fail.
Milo was down, beaten bloody and could barely feel his legs, but not dead. He could only see out of one eye, but his reflexes remained quick enough to roll away from the foot aimed at his head.
It had been a long, excruciating fight, with his opponent employing every dirty trick possible, and Thatcher didn’t object once.
At some point, Usher had arrived to watch horror-stricken, as Milo fought for his life. At least neither his mother nor his sister, Haley, had been dragged from their beds to witness his humiliation.
After five minutes of struggling to make his legs move, Milo froze at the first sign of rain. Dismay filled his heart, but he fought to stand and dodged through another ten minutes of attacks, too bone-weary to do anything but defend and protect himself. His opponent showed signs of fatigue, and it was satisfying to see bleeding wounds where Milo had left his mark.
Then the opponent backed away to shift into his m’weko form―a giant beast, all fur and fangs, and far scarier than the Dnaran tales of wolf beasts. Something Milo was too weak to do.
Lightning flashed across the sky, and he feared his fate was to die here.
As a massive paw swiped at his head, Milo ducked, rearing back to avoid it gutting his stomach on the way up. Too late to see the other hand lowering over his bent body in time to counter-strike.
He saw the claw descend, knew he had neither the time nor energy to avoid it, and felt the skin tear as it made contact. Milo screamed, a sound he’d never made before, and crumpled to the ground to an angry shout,
In the haze of his vision, he made out Usher shifting to tackle the m’weko challenger, tearing at his throat. Milo lasted long enough for Usher to kill the man, then shift to human.
“I won’t let you kill him,” he snapped at their father, crossing to where Milo lay. Usher lifted his broken body from the ground, and such pain flooded through him that Milo passed into a brief, but peaceful, oblivion.
NineStar Press | Books2Read
Meet the Author
Elaine White is the author of multi-genre MM romance, celebrating ‘love is love’ and offering diversity in both genre and character within her stories.
Growing up in a small town and fighting cancer in her early teens taught her that life is short and dreams should be pursued. She lives vicariously through her independent, and often hellion characters, exploring all possibilities within the romantic universe.
The Winner of two Watty Awards – Collector’s Dream (An Unpredictable Life) and Hidden Gem (Faithfully) – and an Honourable Mention in 2016’s Rainbow Awards (A Royal Craving) Elaine is a self-professed geek, reading addict, and a romantic at heart.