Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Wedding with Wings - A FREE Dante's Circle Short Story

A Wedding with Wings

Why couldn’t things just happen right the first time? Oh yeah, because she was Lily, and things were never perfect until she checked them over like twenty times. It’s what made her her.
Well, at least partially.
The other parts of her had to do with the whole brownie thing. Who knew she’d actually enjoy being a paranormal creature of the night?
Well, were brownies really creatures of the night? It wasn’t as if there were movies about them stalking their prey. No, she was the obscure species. Too bad Hollywood didn’t make any noise about being a brownie. She thought it was pretty cool, if she did thing so herself.
Well, okay, and the whole marrying the love of her life who happened to be a centuries old angel?
Totally worth it.
Her body warmed at the thought of Shade.
Her true half, the groom of the wedding she wasn’t sure was going to happen.
Darn it.
Why had she even thought she could do all this?
Strong arms wrapped around her and she sank into Shade’s hold. He smelled of chocolate and sin and all kinds of goodness.
And he was hers.
At least in every sense of the word except legally.
Why was that piece of paper so important to her? She already had everything she could have wanted with this man, yet she needed to be called his wife…what was wrong with her?
Shade kissed her brow and rocked into her. She loved when he was hard for her…which seemed to be often.
“What’s making you think so much, my Lily?” he asked as he kissed up her neck and nibbled on her ear.
She shivered and sank into him. “I’m not thinking about anything but you at the moment.”
He growled and spun her around so he faced her. He looked down at her and she fell into his fractured ice-blue eyes. God, he was beautiful.
Those strong cheekbones, that honeyed skin. He’d left his hair down so it brushed his shoulders and framed his face.
“You’re lying, my Lily. Is it the wedding? I know you wanted everything to be perfect, but I just want you by my side. That’s all I need.”
Lily closed her eyes, unable to show him the shame. “I know that. We’re just having a small wedding. I don’t want any more than that. But I had thought my father…” her voice broke off and she leaned into Shade’s hold, her ear on his chest, his heartbeat calming her.
Shade’s hold tightened and he cursed. “I hate the way he’s hurting you. I would take care of him for you, but I don’t think that’s what you want.”
She gave a dry laugh, though she knew he wasn’t joking. “No, I don’t want you to take care of him, whatever that means. I just thought he’d be here for the wedding. I wanted him to give me away.”
“He’s a fool for ignoring you.”
“He told me he had a new family and he didn’t have time to go back to the past. What kind of man says that, Shade?”
Even saying the words hurt her. Why did she give a man she hardly knew so much power to cause pain?
Shade cupped her face and kissed her softly, his lips softer than she’d even imagined. She wanted to pull him down and let him love her, let him take away the memories, but that wasn’t what she needed.
No, she needed to move on.
“I’m your family now, my Lily. You’re friends are your family. They’ll take care of you.”
“The wedding is tomorrow and I’m freaking out like a beastly bride. I don’t like it, Shade.”
Shade kissed her again, smiling this time. “If you weren’t freaking out about something, I’d be worried. I love my OCD bride-to-be.”
Her heart warmed and she hugged him again. “I love you to, my angel.”


Shade ran a hand through his hair, wishing he‘d had a drink or something before this. Why was he so nervous? He was a warrior angel; he should have been fine with anything that came his way.
Of course, he hadn’t been expecting the bundle of nervous energy that was his Lily. He’d fallen for those big green eyes the moment he’d met her.
Damn, he loved her.
This was their wedding day, and any moment, his Lily would walk to him and he’d hold his true half in his arms.
Though he wished Ambrose could have been there. But alas, the council hadn’t let him come, stating that his best friend was needed up in the angel realm to deal with the aftermath of the betrayal.
Ambrose had tried to come anyway and had been punished for it.
Shade had wanted to retaliate, but Ambrose had sent a gift and his good wishes, knowing there wasn’t anything else that could have been done. And anyway, Shade hadn’t thought Ambrose would want to be near Jamie since the two of them held a volatile connection that Shade didn’t know what to think of.
But that wasn’t here nor there.
No, this was his wedding—their wedding. The only people in attendance were Lily’s six girlfriends, each in their own right a family member and held a key into their future.
And of course, Dante, the dragon shifter who owned the bar where everything was connected.
The damn dragon was even going to give Lily away because her bastard of a father hadn’t wanted to come.
But in reality, the fact that Dante was going to do it made perfect sense. Their new family was made of hope and a future, not of blood.
What more could they need?
The women gasped and Shade looked up.
His Lily.
She wore a strapless dress that flowed to the floor, tightening in a t the waist and framed her ample breasts. Breasts he’d be able to taste later.
But that wasn’t what made her glow.
No, she’d come as a brownie. Her skin gold, dusty, and perfect.
She smiled, her eyes bright.
This was his Lily. His future.
He couldn’t wait to make her round with his child.
Dante handed Lily to him, and he gave a nod to the dragon with the pierced brow and black hair that fell to the floor with blue streaks.
Dante smiled and sat back with the women, careful not to sit next to Nadie.
Lily reached for him and his hands shook.
This was his Lily. His future.
“We come today to join two souls in a state beyond paper, but in a fragile reality where the strength comes from the person within, not the strength of their sword,” the minister, a tiger shifter, began.
“I love you,” he mouthed.
“I love you too,” she mouthed back.
This was his future, their future. Though the lightning that had struck had changed everything, he’d take it again to have her.
There was nothing better in the world than this.
Their everything.

Did you enjoy that? I have more short stories on my FREE READS page, plus of course, you can find Shade and Lily's story in Dust of My Wings, out now.