Authors: T. A. Grey
Ties That Bind
The Bellum Sisters 3
by T. A. GREY
Acclaim for The Bellum Sisters Novels:
"Ties That Bind is a hair-raising, nail biting, heartwarming adventure of the grandest scale. Of all three of the Bellum sisters, Lily would have to be my personal favorite, as she is charming, quirky, and not a little bit spunky and outrageous. She is also still a delicate and unsure young lady. This is a perfect conclusion to the Bellum sisters trilogy, and I absolutely loved it." 5/5 stars!
NIGHT OWL ROMANCE
“Having never read a novel by this author before, I was delighted to pick up this novel. It [Chains of Frost] is extremely fast paced and never slows down. The story flows beautifully together, and will lead perfectly into the second novel. This is a truly enchanting novel that will grab the interest of readers everywhere and will not let go.”
–NIGHT OWL ROMANCE
“It [Bonds of Fire] is a wonderful story, moving fast and never stopping for anything. It ties in beautifully to the previous book, with the stories blending with each other, and working together to build the third novel, which is forthcoming. Romance lovers everywhere will adore this book (and the series) as much as I have.
: The content in this book contains explicit sexual content. This book is intended for mature audiences only. It contains sexually explicit scenes that may be offensive. Please keep your file in a safe area on your computer and away from minors.
This book is not transferable. If it is sold, shared, or given away it is infringement of the copyright of this work and violators will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
This book is a work of fiction. All characters, names, places, and scenarios are solely the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, though reference to actual events or locations may be real.
Any trademarks mentioned herein are not authorized by the trademark owners and do not in any way mean the work is sponsored by or associated with the trademark owners. Any trademarks used are specifically in a descriptive capacity.
Stock image by: Marcus Ranum/www.ranum.com
Cover design by: Regina Wamba/www.maeidesign.com
Ties That Bind: The Bellum Sisters 3
2012 T. A. Grey
All Rights Reserved
ALSO AVAILABLE BY T. A. GREY
THE KATEGAN ALPHAS
THE BELLUM SISTERS TRILOGY
Chains of Frost
Bonds of Fire
Ties That Bind
Midnight Sex Shop
Evernight Romance Anthology
One Last Chance (free)
Ecstasy Overload (free)
To everyone who has enjoyed The Bellum Sisters as much as I have.
Thank you to my beta readers who have answered my questions and helped me to perfect this book. Without your help, I wouldn’t be able to do this. Thank you to Regina Wamba for creating such beautiful covers for The Bellum Sister’s books, and to Tomas for helping translate and pronounce some Irish.
– Demonic assassins
Dreenaru finishama slinah
– Demonic for “You feel incredible”
Dreenaru gina slinah
– Demonic for “You are incredible”
– Demonic for “fuck”
i – A bottom feeding demon from the deepest layer under the rift. They are aggressive and easily manipulated creatures with poisonous talons.
– Demonic for “Silence!”
– A demonic term for a succubus.
new moon – The time when a succubus grows into sexual maturity.
Protector – The male in charge of protecting and caring for a succubus
rift – The division between earth and the nether-realm where demons reside. The rift is guarded by the Atal Warriors.
– A breed of demon that lives at the top of the rift. They have unique powers to save and destroy life.
To my youngest daughter,
my sweet and smart Lily,
I bequeath to you our home in Louisiana
and all of my books to be added to your library.
I deem that on the day of your 29th birthday
in the year of 2012,
that you will be put into the Protection of
the demon Telal Demuzi;
to be protected by,
to facilitate a relationship with,
and to mate and breed with.
This I so order on the 8th of May, 2010.
Signed, dated and ordered at the event of my death.
Sir Francis Jeremiah Bellum
May 8th, 2010
The football whizzed through the air like a bullet. The group sprinted into action, bodies slamming together, dodging left or right with grunts and laughs.
Lily Bellum sprinted down the makeshift field, Draven only a few feet ahead of her. He turned back to her, his long silver hair blowing behind him, and grinned.
“Don't you do it!” she warned, pumping her legs faster.
His grin split into a shit-eating one and then he turned invisible.
“Fuck. Dammit, I said no powers!”
The football arched through the air slowly drifting down towards the other end of the field. Lily clamped her lips shut and bore through the burn in her muscles. No way was she letting him get that football.
The football stalled about six feet from the ground then moved in his invisible grasp. Now only a floating football ran furiously for the finish line. Lily narrowed her eyes on the floating football and quickly chanted in her mind.
Power surged inside her; warm like sun on her skin, and then her legs took her across the field at an unnatural speed. She closed in on the ball.
“I got you, you bastard.”
The ball stopped for a moment as if he'd turned back to look at her, and then raced off again with a boost of speed like he had NOS strapped to his back. Draven crossed the finish line and reappeared holding the ball and sporting a huge grin.
Lily glared at him and didn't stop running. His eyes widened at her. When she didn't stop charging towards him he took a step back holding his hands out in front of him.
“Now, Lily, it's just a ga—”
Lily slammed into him in a full-on tackle, catching him in the chest and planting his back into the dirt with a satisfying thump. She perched on top of him breathing hard but smiling like a fool.
She tore the football out of his hands as he dragged in wheezing breaths. “My birthday means
“No fair,” he gasped.
She smiled brightly and hopped off of him. “I stopped playing fair when you used powers.”
Shaking his head, he slowly lumbered to a stand. “You used magic, too. How else did you catch me?”
She ignored the question and merely cocked a brow. “My awesome leg strength of course.”
The rest of the crowd came forward. “Team Lily wins!” Half the team cheered while the other moaned.
“You won because I was on your team,” Willow said. Willow just had her baby the month before, a gorgeous baby girl whom she and Lyonis couldn't decide on a name for, and already her energy was coming back in full force. She had been the rowdiest of the bunch when they started the game. The fierce competitive gleam in her eyes still shone as she propped her hands on her hips.
“Time for presents,” Willow said.
The group milled around the buffet table that held an assortment of meats, cakes, alcohol and, of course, presents. Lily took her seat and ordered everyone to sit in a circle with her.
Chloe grabbed her present off the table first, a wicked grin on her face. Lily took it with a mixture of apprehension and glee. Her sister could be bad when she wanted to.
As Lyonis and Tyrian broke into an argument over fighting tactics, Lily tore into her present. She’d never been very patient with gifts. She’d always felt a certain amount of embarrassment opening gifts in front of others so she found it best just to tear into it and get it done with. She opened the gift and started laughing.
She held up the black lingerie for everyone to see complete with a bustier, garters, and black stockings. The best part was the lettering just underneath the bust which read “bite me” in cursive.
The half-demon, half-vampire Rayn leaned close to her with a sensual smile. “Any time you wish to try that on let me know,
“I’ll try it on if you do.” His grin faltered then he started laughing. Turning to Chloe she said, “Why the ‘bite me?’ Not that I don’t appreciate its merit, of course.”
Chloe’s brow pinched forward. “Don’t demons bite or something?”
The crowd burst with laughter. “No darling, just vampires,” Tyrian said. Her sister blushed under her mate’s warm look and shrugged.
“No worries, I love it. I’m sure he’ll still do some biting.”
The next box came from Willow and had a pair of boxing gloves—for fighting the demon, of course—and a snow globe of New Orleans, Louisiana; her favorite city. Draven gave her a dagger that looked so sharp she didn’t bother taking it out of the case lest she make a fool of herself. Not that she normally minded such a thing, but recently, she’d been on edge. Strange dreams, strange feelings which she didn’t know what to make of.
Lucinda, Draven’s new mate, gave her a beautifully made leather-bound book that nearly strained her muscles when she lifted it. Eyes lighting up, she opened the pages to find them blank with paper thicker than normal and painted a cream-color.
Lucinda smiled, pleased at her reaction. “A spell book for whatever you want to use it for. Your potion recipes, for instance. I hope you like it.” She’d changed much since she and Draven had gotten together. No longer did she wear suffocating gowns from the Victorian Age but now wore an array of shorts, skirts, tanks, and flip-flops. Still she spoke quietly in that reserved way—unless she was laughing, then the woman sounded like a horse. Lily thanked her from the bottom of her heart and went to the last gift from her dearest friend, Rosa el Blanco.
Her real name was Rosa Medina Delgado but as a powerful white witch she preferred the nickname “Rosa el Blanco” or Rosa the White. And when a woman was as powerful as she was, people would use whatever name she wanted. Her friend’s smile only barely lifted her chocolate-colored lips. Secretly, she’d never been jealous of Rosa; however, she didn’t mind openly telling Rosa how gorgeous she was. Rosa had skin the color of cream mixed with dark cocoa. Her long black hair and dark eyes only accentuated her Spanish ancestry.
Lily smiled as she opened the gift. Inside was a bracelet surrounded by velvet lining. Warmth and positive energy flowed from the bracelet. The aura around the bracelet radiated power and white magic. The band was silver and laden with different sized hoops that jingled as she lifted it out of the box. Red and green gems added a vibrant color to the otherwise unusual piece.
“What is this?”
Rosa’s cheeks flushed as everyone turned to her. In a strong voice, laced with rolling “r’s” and fluid letters, she said, “A true charm bracelet. I have bespelled it to help protect you from dark magic.”
From the corner of her eye, Lily watched her sister Chloe grimace and pressed a hand to her stomach. Lily knew that look, that response—she had a bad feeling. While Lily didn’t have the magic “feelings” that her sister did, she too felt an ominous presence.
“Why would I need that?” The feeling triggered thoughts of her recent dreams. Dreams of a strange, dark man centered on a throne, surrounded by an evil so potent, she woke up screaming in terror.
The corner of her lip lifted into a half-smile. “Just in case.”
Lily wanted to know more about the vague words but for the life of her she couldn’t think of the right questions to ask, so she left it alone. As everyone came to hug her and give her kisses, she put on a bright smile. The goodbyes came and went and soon so did her friends.
Lily sighed as silence greeted her. A breeze blew by making goose bumps pop up on her arms. She rubbed at them as she surveyed the damage. Her yard was a disaster. Silly string, streamers, and now wrapping paper littered her pretty little yard. She got to work cleaning it, putting away her gifts, before she finally went to her favorite place—her laboratory.
When Papa died, he left this house to her in his will. There had never been any doubt who’d get the house situated in one of the most magical cities in the world—New Orleans, Louisiana. While the house was actually several miles outside of the city in the more rural area, Lily just loved being here. Even without the house, she felt at home in Louisiana.
The house itself was Victorian-style with several acres of rich green grass, bushes, and wild flowers. Though, her sisters would argue that those “wild flowers” were really just weeds.
Lily made her way to the laboratory, which sat on the second floor secluded in the back of the house down a short hallway with only the single door on it. Her sisters laughed at her “laboratory” but Lily loved it; it was her second home inside her home.
She chuckled as she went inside and hit the lights. “And this is where the magic happens.”
The lab was a decent-sized space with tall wooden bookcases against the walls and three equally tall windows that let in plenty of sunlight. A large rectangular workbench in the middle was the focal point that instantly drew the eye of whoever entered.
She had a carpenter craft the bench specifically to her taste. The wood was dark mahogany, the four legs each carved with beautiful designs of English Ivy. The table’s undercarriage housed many of the goodies her cabinet space couldn’t fit including spells, exotic oils, grasses, woods, and furs.
She nibbled her lip as she set about creating a new flask—one for herself. She couldn’t help but feel like a cheat using her own goodies for herself, but it had to be done. The dreams had been growing steadier for months now, growing darker. In her whole life, she’d never had a dream that she couldn’t eventually interpret, that did or did not come true, but for months she’d been without an answer. Besides the potion made her feel good—really good. Tonight she would have none of those haunting nightmares. She cranked on the stove and started boiling purified water, lavender, and slowly added in honey and milk.
“Ah, what the hell.” She tossed in some crushed chamomile leaves, scullcap, and Linden flowers. Tonight she’d sleep like the dead.
And she needed to sleep good tonight, because tomorrow she was going to see a demon.