Greyson Bailey had followed Shifter King Montgomery Beck for years. He stood by his side through thick and thin, fought numerous battles with him, and was even there when the man eventually claimed his omega after twenty-five years of waiting for him. Greyson just wished he could find a bit of that happiness of his own.
When he's sent to oversee the omegas at the monastery where Fagan grew up, he finds more trouble than a simple shifter, even a warrior like himself, can handle. He wakes up wounded in an alley with no idea how he got there, who shot him, or why the omega kneeling next to him smells so damn alluring.
Davan has spent his entire life in a monastery being trained to serve whatever master he was given to. He learned every fighting skill he could, not to protect his master, but to protect himself. He had no intention of spending his life serving someone he didn't know.
The man he saved and dragged to the alley is a different story. Davan desperately wants to get to know him better, but the people who hurt Greyson have other ideas. Chased through the streets of the city, Davan and Greyson have to fight for their future. Together they just might have a chance at happiness.
"Please, please, please," a soft voice filled with panic prickled at Greyson Bailey's consciousness. "You have to wake up, mister."
A good shake to his shoulders had his eyes snapping open. They widened when he realized the most beautiful man he'd ever seen was leaning over him. He was simply stunning. Porcelain like skin smattered with freckles, high cheekbones, and auburn hair so deep, it looked like living flame.
Not a stellar opening, but his brain was stuck on dumb.
"Yes." He figured that was pretty clear as he'd just spoken to the guy.
He could be wrong.
"You need to get up," the guy insisted, pulling at Greyson's shoulders. "They're coming. If they find us, they will kill us. Please, get up. We have to hide."
Greyson started to sit up until a sharp pain sliced through him. He winced as he reached down and pressed a hand to his side. He frowned when he felt something wet. His hand came away bloody. "What the hell?"
"You've been shot."
Greyson's head snapped up. "I've been what?"
"They shot you."
"Who are they?" He needed to know whose throat to rip out.
"I don't know exactly. They just showed up at the monastery and started ordering everyone around. Headmaster Eithar seemed to know who they were, but he was really upset with them." The young man swallowed hard. "They killed Headmaster Eithar when he protested. They shot him just like they shot you."
Well, that wasn't good.
Greyson pushed himself into a sitting position and glanced around. "Where the hell are we?"
"We're in an alley a few blocks from the monastery. Once they shot you and the headmaster, they started rounding up the omegas. A few of us escaped out the back. We took you with us."
It was hard to tell if there were stars in the young man's eyes when he looked up at Greyson. They were milky white, just like Fagan's. "You're an omega, aren't you?"
"My name is Greyson, not sir."
Eyebrows of flame snapped together as the man frowned. "You're not a master?"
Greyson's upper lip curled back in disgust. "No, I am not a master."
"But I heard you before, when you took Fagan away. How could you do that if you aren't a master?"
"Long story." One he didn't think he had time to explain, not right now. If there were people after them, they needed to get back home, not hide out in some alleyway. "Help me to my feet. We need to go."
"Oh, the others will be back soon. We can't leave without them."
The smile that suddenly crossed the young man's face stole Greyson's breath. It brightened up the man's entire face. "My friends."
"Yes. We shared a dorm in the west wing."
West wing. Right. Fagan had mentioned the west wing.
"Just how many of you are there?" he asked.
The man's eyelashes lowered as he glanced down. "There were ten of us before Fagan got taken away, nine after that. Only three of us got away. I don't know what happened to the others, but I don't think they got away."
Greyson didn't know what propelled him to grab the young man around the neck and pull him close, tucking the guy's head under his chin as he hugged him close, but the feeling was overwhelming. "I'm sorry you went through that...uh...what is your name?"
"Davan," he whispered as he snuggled into Greyson's embrace. "But you can call me whatever you want."
He wanted to call Davan his, but he wasn't a shifter king, which meant the strong feelings churning around inside of him could never see the light of day.
Davan was not his.
Greyson had been attracted to people in the past. He was breathing after all, but he'd never felt such an overwhelming need to care for and protect someone. Every instinct he had was screaming at him to hold onto Davan and never let him go. Just the thought of letting Davan go was making his stomach clench, and he didn't understand that. He'd just met the guy.
"Why do I have a briefcase handcuffed to my wrist?" Greyson lifted his arm and stared at the silver case with a bit of wonder and a whole lot of trepidation. "This isn't my briefcase."
He didn't own one.
"I don't know," Davan replied as he pushed back from Greyson. "When you and Headmaster Eithar came out of his office, you were complaining about having to have that attached to your wrist. We tried to get it off of you, but we don't have a key."
Greyson frowned. "I don't think I do either." He reached down with his free hand and searched his pockets. When he came up empty, he patted down his shirt. "Nope. No key."
"So, why do you have it attached to your wrist?"
"I have no bloody idea."
He knew he didn't like it, though. He jiggled his wrist in frustration.
"Ssshh!" Davan grabbed for him. "You can't make noises like that. These guys have really good hearing."
Probably shifters, which didn't make a whole lot of sense in the grand scheme of things. Yes, the omegas being trained at the monastery were supposed to go to shifter kings. Shifter kings, not every day shifters.
That didn't explain why there were shifters at the monastery, which meant they might have been humans. That made much more sense. The facility was supposed to be operated by humans. That was part of the peace treaty set down ages ago between the Sidhe, shifters, and humans.
Shifters provided a shifter king and four of his most loyal warriors to guard the high council to ensure the bonds of brotherhood. The Sidhe provided an omega to be mated to the shifter king to ensure that shifters always protected the high council. And the humans provided the care and training to the omegas to ensure that the compassion and empathy for those not as strong as shifters or as wise as the Sidhe were not forgotten.
It had been that way for a thousand years.
Until recently, anyway. As they had found out when Greyson went to collect his shifter king's omega mate, someone had taken the rules of the peace treaty and used them to turn something sacred into a nightmare. They were training submissives and selling them to the highest bidders. That was why Greyson had been at the monastery.
Still didn't explain the briefcase.
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