Luna Diana
Luna Diana
Author: Twisted Fate




As soon as he stripped naked, he'd be hers.

Unbraiding her hair, Diana's blood heated with desire while she observed the dark-haired boy. He looked about eighteen, two years older than she. He yanked off one boot, then another, at the lake’s edge. It wasn’t the first time she'd watched him peel out of his clothes, but it was the first time she’d join him. If he had a taste of her, wouldn't he crave her? Hunger to be like her? Wild and free?

She swallowed hard, longing to be Caleb's mate—rather than some human’s—but it would never be. Lifting her chin, she resolved to make the human hers. She untied her ankle-high boots, then slipped them off her feet.

The human boy’s pet gray wolf rested at the shoreline, his ears perked up as he watched her. But the boy didn't see her—he was unobservant, as most humans were.

However, a boy who cared for his wolf such as he did would care for her, too, wouldn’t he? He’d studied her when she swam here before, naked, splashing lazily across the water’s surface, attempting to draw him to her. Though he’d tried to conceal himself in the woods, she'd seen him. And heard him with her sensitive hearing when he stepped on dried oak leaves and pine needles to draw closer, to see her more clearly. She’d smelled his heady man-scent on the breeze. He’d desired her then, setting her belly afire; he’d desire her now.

Tilting her nose up, she breathed in his masculinity. Masculine but not as wild as her own kind—lupusgarou. A human who treated a woman with kindness, that’s what she desired.

She tugged her pale blue dress over her head, struggling to shed her clothes as quickly as she could now. Wanting to get her plan into motion, before she changed her mind, or one of the pack tried to change it for her.

Adopted by the gray pack, she wasn’t even a gray wolf. So why should it matter if she left them and chose the human boy for her own? Ragnar, the gray alpha pack leader, wanted her, that’s why. Her stomach clenched with the thought that the man who’d nearly raped her would have her if she couldn’t find a way out of the nightmare.

The human pulled off his breeches. A boy, still not well-muscled, but well on his way. A survivor, living on his own, that’s what intrigued her so much about him. A loner—like a rogue wolf—determined to endure.

Only in her heart, she desired the gray who’d saved her life when they were younger—Caleb. Even now she had difficulty not comparing his rangy, taller body with this boy’s. They had the same dark hair and eyes, which maybe explained why the human had attracted her. She wanted Caleb with all her heart, but craving his attention would only result in Ragnar killing him. Best to leave the pack and mate with a human, cut her ties with the grays, and start her pack.

She’d watched the human ride, run, and hunt with his rifle, but she admired him most when he swam. Her gaze dropped lower to the patch of dark hair resting above his legs and…

She raised her brows. A thrill of expectation of having his manhood buried deep inside her sent a tingling of gooseflesh across her skin. If her drawers hadn’t been crotchless, they’d have been wet in anticipation. She smiled at the sight of him. He’d produce fine offspring.

He dove into the water with a splash. With powerful strokes, he glided across the placid surface of the small, summer-warmed lake. She slipped out of her last petticoat, then her drawers. Without a stitch of clothes on, she stood on the opposite shore, waiting for him to catch sight of her. Wouldn’t he yearn for her like her own kind did?

She had to entice him to make love to her. Then she'd change into the wolf and bite him. And transfer the beauty of the wolf to him in the ancient way.

Running her fingers through her cinnamon curls, she fanned them over her shoulders, down to her hips.

They’d live together in his log cabin, taking jaunts through the woods in their wolf states under the bright moon forever. His mother, father, and little sister had died during the winter, and none of his kind lived within a fifteen-mile radius. He’d want her—he had to. Like her wolf pack, most humankind desired companionship.

She stepped into the water.

Then he caught sight of her.

His dark eyes widened and his mouth dropped open.

But he didn’t swim toward her as she expected. He didn’t come for her, ravish her as she wanted. His eyes inspected every bit of her, but then he turned and swam away from her, back to the shore and his clothes. What was wrong with him?

Her mind warred between anger and confusion. Didn’t he find her appealing?

She swam toward him, trying to reach the shore before he dressed and headed back to his cabin. But by the time she reached the lake halfway, he’d jerked on his breeches and boots, not even bothering with his shirt or vest, and vanished into the woods with his wolf at his heel.

In disbelief, she stared after him.

“Diana!” the leader of her pack hollered, his voice forbidding and warlike.

She snapped her head around. Her heart nearly stopped when she saw the gray leader.

Ragnar stood like a predator waiting for the right time to go after his prey. His ebony hair was bound tight, and his black eyes narrowed. As a wolf, he was heavy set, broad-shouldered and thick-necked, the leader by virtue of his size, powerful jaws, and wicked killer canines. But now he stood as a man, his thoughts darker than night, his face menacing as he considered her swimming naked in the lake.

Did the boy get away in time, before Ragnar caught sight of him? How could she be so naïve as to think that Ragnar would let her have a human male?

She paddled in place and glared at him. “What do you want, Ragnar?” she growled back, unable to hold a civil tongue whenever he stood near.

“Come out at once!”

He turned his head toward the woods.

Had he smelled the human? Her heart rate quickened. She swam back to her clothes, determined to draw his attention away from the boy.

Then she spied Caleb, watching, half-hidden in the shadows of the forest as if he and the pack leader were maneuvering in for the kill. A pang of regret sliced through her that Caleb might have seen her lusting after a human. Three years older than she, he still vied for his place within the pack. A strap of leather tied back his coffee-colored, shoulder-length hair, and she fought the urge to set it free, to soften his harsh look. His equally dark brown eyes glowered at her, while his sturdy jaw clenched.

He stepped closer, not menacingly, but as if he stalked a deer and feared scaring away his prey. She raised a brow. This time, he seemed to have Ragnar's permission to draw close.

She growled. “Stay away.” Wading out of the water, she distracted Ragnar from considering the woods or who might have disappeared into them. Caleb, too, eyed her with far too much interest.

She hurried to slip into her clothes, irritated to have the wrong audience. Still, the way Caleb closed in on her, only keeping a few feet from her until she was dressed, while Ragnar remained a hundred yards away, sent a trickle of dread through her.

Ragnar never allowed males to get close to her when she was naked, and normally she wouldn’t have permitted it either. So what were they up to? She left her wet hair loose, then Ragnar nodded.

As soon as he signaled to Caleb, her heart skipped a beat, but she didn’t react quickly enough. Caleb surged forward and grabbed her wrist. In the same instant, Ragnar charged in the direction of the woods where the young man had disappeared.

“Ragnar!” she screamed.

He intended to murder the boy. Only she had really killed him, as surely as if she’d ripped out his throat herself. Wanting to save him, she struggled to free herself from Caleb. “Let me go!”

He gripped her wrist tighter and hurried her toward their village.

“He didn’t do anything!”

Caleb glared at her, his eyes unforgiving, blacker than she’d ever seen them. Anger smoldered in the depths. An anger she couldn’t understand.

“Please,” she pleaded, trying to soften his heart.

She tried to break free, and he wrenched her back to his side. “You’re a fool, Diana.”

“I won’t be Ragnar's mate!”

For an instant, Caleb's grasp on her arm lessened. Then he tightened his grip again. “You have no choice. And after what you’ve done here, he won’t wait any longer.”

Was there regret in his voice? God, how she wanted him to save her from Ragnar…to be her mate.

A howl sounded in the distance, and she sank to her knees. Ragnar had murdered the young man and shouted his actions to the world with great pleasure.

Caleb yanked her from the ground and hurried her on their way.

“You won’t ever leave the pack, Caleb. You’ll always be nothing but a follower!” She hadn’t meant to say the hurtful words, but the anger she harbored simmered red-hot, like molten lava beneath the surface. “Why can’t you run with me? Why can’t you take me for your own somewhere far from here?”

He glared at her. “They’re my family. They'll always be my family. Something you don’t comprehend, apparently.”

“I—I thought you felt something for me.”

Caleb pulled her to a stop and grabbed her shoulders. “It can never be between us! Ragnar would hunt us down, both of us. What kind of a life would that be? He’d kill our offspring, too. Is that what you want? Maybe if I'd been older, stronger, but now he won’t wait to have you.” He shook his head. “Dammit, Diana, as far as the human was concerned, he wouldn’t have wanted you! Can’t you see that? If he’d seen you changed, he would have been repulsed. If he could have discovered away, he’d have killed you.” He held her tightly, staring into her eyes with a mixture of anger and hunger. “You know what I want from you.”

He was hard and smelled of sex. She sensed that his hormones raged, urging him to mount her. Her breath came quickly as she desired his attentions, but feared them, too. Feared them because of what Ragnar would do to Caleb if Ragnar caught him lusting after her. She'd never seen Caleb so outwardly angry, so filled with venoms–so sexually alive.

“You could smell his putrid fear, woman!” He

pulled her against his body and kissed her hard on the mouth, no teasing or waiting for her approval—just pure lust, conquering, and decisive. And she loved him, every bit of the dangerous and feral lupus garou that he was.

Her body melted to his touch, but Ragnar's musky, bloody scent drifted to her on the breeze. Panic sliced through her. Ragnar would claim her now. But if he caught Caleb touching her…

Ragnar appeared in a couple of bounds in his ebony pelted wolf form, his eyes narrowed with hate. He growled, and immediately Caleb released her. She stepped back, assuming Ragnar would kill Caleb for his actions, the thought wrenching at her gut.

Caleb stood his ground. “I tried to convince her how stupid she was for feeling anything for the human.”

Ragnar turned to Diana. He’d show her how a male wolf took a mate. The moisture from her throat evaporated. The image of him trying to take her when she was much younger still fed her nightmares. A streak of shudders racked her body.

Ragnar turned his attention back to Caleb. The hair stood on end from the nape of his neck to the tip of his tail. He advanced aggressively, then stopped.

Torn between giving herself to Ragnar to protect Caleb and fighting Ragnar herself, she knew neither would work. Caleb would hate her either way—damn his male wolf pride.

Ragnar growled again. Caleb yanked off his shirt. His muscles flexed as he tugged at his belt, his golden skin shimmering with sweat in the summer sun. Any other day, she loved to see every bit of his handsome physique—his muscled thighs, the dark patch of curly hair between his legs, and the erection she'd encouraged. But not now, not with Ragnar threatening to rip him to shreds.

As soon as Caleb stood naked, he began to change, his body twisting into the form of a wolf, his snout elongated. A thick brown pelt as rich as a mink’s covered his long legs and torso. He howled as the change took place. Ragnar waited patiently before he lunged.

She couldn’t watch him rip Caleb apart. She couldn't stomach seeing the bully hurt any other wolf of the pack. But certainly not Caleb, with whom she’d played as a pup, not Caleb who’d rescued her from the wildfire that took her red wolf pack’s lives. She couldn’t save him now…only maybe herself. Yet when Ragnar lunged for Caleb, she dashed between them to protect him. Ragnar clamped his teeth down on her arm, having the ability to crush the bone with his powerful canines. She cried out when a streak of pain shot up her arm and blood dripped from the wound. Though his eyes reflected remorse at once and he released her, he growled at her to stay out of the way. And so did Caleb.

Maybe if she ran, Ragnar would come after her. Maybe she could save Caleb that way. But she would never return to the pack.

She bolted, with her legs stretched far out, her heart pounding, her breath steady, but her mind frantic—her only chance was to toss her clothes and run like the wolf.

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