What would you do when the only way out is death?
Zoe is a lizard shifter meant to live far away from the cold north. He was taken from his homelands, captured, and forced to fight in a pit like a modern-day gladiator. After three and a half years of suffering, he has given up. He has come up with the perfect plan that will force his master to kill him, but the killing blow doesn’t come.
Wojtek doesn’t want to lose his best fighter. It’s not that he cares for the crawler, but it would be such a waste to kill him. To save his life he makes a deal with his opponent that allows the lizardian to come live with him. Everyone knows werewolves tend to get a little attached to the people surrounding them, but Wojtek doesn’t think it’ll be a problem to have his slave in his home and then throw him in the pit to fight to the death every Friday night. He could never care for a slave, could he?
What was he waiting for? It wasn’t like there was much to discuss. Surely Tedor could see the waste of killing such a formidable fighter as his reptilian, and he wouldn’t lose his player either. It was a win-win situation. They could even pit the fighters against each other again in a week or two.
He crammed his hand into the pocket of his jeans in an attempt to hide his frustration. This waiting was ridiculous, the crawler was dying, and the punters would be just as disappointed from having their debts collected over a death like this as they would be from having them returned because of a called-off fight. Not that they’d ever called off a match before; fight to the death was their thing. If the audience just wanted to see two creatures punch each other for a little while they could go to a human MMA fight or something equally tame. They offered the real thing, no rules, no interference…except.
“Sorry, just had to check up on my Twitter feed. You want him to live?” Wojtek wanted to strangle Tedor; that was what he wanted. “Is he such a good fuck, the reptile, that you’re willing to embarrass yourself in front of all these people?”
Wojtek snarled. He would never touch a fucking crawler, and Tedor knew it. Tedor chuckled, though, apparently having a good time. Then all of a sudden he turned serious. “I’ll tell you what, if you let him live I want a picture sent to me every day of you and him together. He’ll be living in your quarters or not at all. Those are my terms.”
“Never!” He pulled his hand out of his pocket just before his claws broke the skin on his fingertips. Have a lizard in his home? Out of the fucking question.
“Then kill him.”
Wojtek stormed away through the arcade, throwing his clothes as he went. He let the change wash over him as he continued down the stone stairs and onto the arena floor. His clawed feet scratched at the blood-stained sand, his tail swishing back and forth in an aggressive manner.
The entire stadium fell quiet.
The lizard tried to raise his head but couldn’t. Wojtek was amazed that he was still as upright as he was. There couldn’t be much blood left in him. He raised his hand, ready to dig the sharp points of his claws into the crawler’s larynx. A growl, born from the excitement of the impending death, echoed through the spring night. His mouth watered. It would’ve been so much better if it’d been a creature that would taste good. The creepy-crawlies were too cold-blooded, the blood smelled about right, and there probably wasn’t anything wrong with the flavour if you could get over the temperature. Seemed like a waste to kill without having a taste.
He leaned forward, just a little, his hand coming down in a powerful blow. But before he could make contact the reptilian angled his head—not away from the oncoming impact, no he angled himself to make the kill easier for Wojtek.
He snarled. Hell no!
The fucker would not have it his way. Wojtek ruled here. And he decided if and when he would kill someone. He knew Satul was watching from the entrance, probably cursing Wojtek for not having killed the crawler yet. Well, he would have to deal.
He bent down and hefted the warrior up over his shoulders. Lukewarm blood trickled down his naked back and probably clotted in his Mohawk. If the twat died on him now, when he’d humiliated himself in front of Tedor and his men, he might have to kill him all over again.
Blood on Sand was written as a part of the 2015 Don’t Read in the Closet event and is therefore free! You’ll find it here:
”This a paranormal shifter world exploration on slavery which includes a gentle hint of a burgeoning m/m romance. It would spoil it to explain anymore. The prose is beautiful, disturbing, painful but hopeful. I had this book for free but would happily have paid for this. A novella that punches above its weight.” — Miss WallE (Full review)
”This is the type of story I will finish and go immediately after to amazon to look for the next book in the series.” — Lila Leigh Hunter (Full review)
”The characters are interesting, the idea of lizard shifters and wolf shifters is fascinating, and the setup – one warrior at the mercy of the other and waiting for death, created immediate narrative tension.” — Eve (Full review)
”This is one of the most imaginative shifter stories I have read in a while.” — Serena Yates (Full review)
”This is a brilliant, moving story, with cast of wonderful secondary characters. I sincerely hope that we see more of them in the future.” — Amy Spector (Full review)
“I can’t even begin to describe how unique this story was.” — Kristan (Full review)