Welcome to the Wicked Warriors Hop! I am happy to participate and introduce you to one of my wicked warriors. My warriors are not “wicked” as in bad, instead they are wickedly good. J Today I would like to introduce you to Mark DeLonco from Marked for Life. He is a wolf shifter from a strong and proud clan. Extremely handsome, fiercely loyal and unwavering patience would best describe him. When he set his site on Victor nothing would stop him from claiming him as his mate…not even time.
When he finally has Victor to himself their time together is nothing short of ‘wickedly good’. I will give you a short peek of their meeting.
Victor Bradley was raised by a tree sprite after the death of his parents. When he became an adult he moved to the city, but the pull of the forest never left his heart. He took a leave of absence to take care of the only mother he ever knew, but was it his concern for her that brought him back to the forest or was it fate?
"So who are you? Why do you seem so familiar to me? Have we met?"
The stranger smiled and relaxed back as well. "Yes, we have met, but it was many years ago." He looked around the room. "Where is the sprite?"
Eyes widening, Victor sat up with a gasp. "How do you know about Yaya?"
"The sprite and I have met on several occasions. I am Mark DeLonco. Has she told you about me?" he asked, extending his hand.
Victor took his hand and opened his mouth to speak, but gasped instead. The moment their hands touched, images formed in Victor's mind. He closed his eyes, trying to get a lock on something to bring understanding to what he was seeing. They were mostly incoherent pictures, flashes of wolves and men he didn't recognize. He became dizzy from trying to decipher the knowledge. Suddenly the imagery started to slow and some things started to make sense. Victor's heart sped up as things fell into place. As a child he'd dreamt of a black wolf all the time and thought nothing of it, but now…
Mark is the man and the black wolf, he thought with a gasp.
The knowledge didn't frighten him, but intrigued and comforted him somehow. Now he remembered a wolf watching him play in the back of his house from the opening of the trees when he was a small boy.
Could that have been him?
He cleared his head with a shake and opened his eyes. "Do you know why the other wolf attacked me today?"
"He sought to destroy you because he smelled my mark on you."
In his mind's eye, Victor saw the two wolves fighting. Yaya saved the dark wolf. That's when she took me in.
Victor let go of Mark's hand and reached up to touch the scar on his left shoulder. He knew now how he got it.
"I thought I got this when I was young from falling or something," he murmured.
Mark shook his head negatively. "I gave you the mark when you were an infant so that when we met again you would know me. With it, no other male could claim you."
Victor nodded. Although he was not a virgin, he'd never had a real relationship with anyone. He'd had many partners, but only to experiment with sex and sexual positions. Victor realized at an early age that he was interested in men and not women, but neither managed to satisfy him completely. Over the years he became more selective about whom he took to his bed. His lovers came few and far between and they didn't stay long. He always found something wrong with them and eventually broke everything off.
"Why are you here, Mark?" he asked, giving the man a sideways glance.
"You know why I am here, Victor," Mark answered with a sly grin.
Victor thought for a moment and Mark was right. He did know. Mark was there to claim him. What the hell did that mean? How did a wolf-shifter claim a man? As a wolf, or as a man? Would it be painful? Would he die? Would he like it? Would he turn into a wolf, too?
He had a life in the city; not a great life, but it was the only one he knew. Did Mark want him to give all that up? The questions slammed into his brain one after the other. Fear started to well up inside him. Victor blew out a breath. His chest heaving, he rested his arms on his knees and lowered his head, taking deep breaths to calm his rapidly beating heart.
Mark's smooth voice soothed him. He turned his head to Mark.
"There is no need to fear me. I could never hurt you. I have known who you were since the day I laid eyes on you." He let out a soft chuckle of surprise. "I must say, gazing upon you as an infant gave me no idea you would grow to be such a handsome man." Mark moved closer. "Your dark skin is intoxicatingly beautiful. I especially love the way your almond-shaped eyes glisten when you speak. Your body is strong and firm and very appealing. It is a relief to know that."
"A relief? I don't understand."
"It is a relief to know my embrace will not harm you," Mark explained. "The sprite fed you from her body. Her enchanted milk made you stronger than what you would have been." Mark stared at him for a moment and then continued. "I have loved you from the moment I tasted your blood, but I had no idea your physical appearance would be so pleasing to me."
Victor was speechless at Mark's description of him. He sat very still, staring at him as he continued to speak, his tone changing from adoration to desperation.
"Being this close to you and not being able to have you is driving me to the edge of insanity, but if it takes me a lifetime to ease your fears so you can come to me on your own, I will wait. I have waited twenty-five years to be here with you; I can wait a little longer."
Mark's confession struck a chord in him. "Are you saying you haven't been with anyone else?"
"There is no one else for me."
Shocked, Victor sat up and shook his head. "Wait, you mean you haven't had sex with anyone in twenty-five years? You've been waiting for me to grow up?"
Marked for Life is available now at Silver Publishing!
I will be giving away a copy of Marked for Life. Leave your comments below if you are interested in reading Mark and Victors journey.
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