Read Cougar Romance: The Traitor: Secret Shades of the Alpha Blood Series (Paranormal BBW Menage Romance) Online

Authors: Paula Knight

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Cougar Romance: The Traitor: Secret Shades of the Alpha Blood Series (Paranormal BBW Menage Romance)

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Cougar Romance

 

The Traitor

 

Secret Shades of the Alpha
Blood Series Book Four

 

 

 

 

 

Paula Knight

 

Cougar Romance: The
Traitor

Chapter One

D
iana allowed herself to be dragged to the truck waiting
outside, her head still spinning with what Charlie had told
her.

It couldn’t be. It was
simply not possible. Cat could not have been the mole, it made no
sense. As they reached the truck, she stopped in her tracks.
Charlie tried to pull her forward, but she dug her heels in and
refused to move.


How do you know Cat is
the mole?” She asked.


Diana, we don’t have
time,” Charlie said exasperatedly trying to pull her forward. She
wrenched her hand from his grasp, crossed her arms and stared
fixedly at him, awaiting his response.


Look,” he said, “I found
an email. I wasn’t looking for it but…”


Who was this email sent
to?” Diana asked still extremely suspicious.


Amanda,” Charlie
admitted, “there’s a plot. They cooked it up with the Navajo and I
don’t know how many other Zuni’s.”


What plot?” Diana
asked.


Please, Diana,” Charlie
said, “we have to get you to the salt lake. That’s the only place
you’ll be safe. And the longer we wait, the more exposed you
are.”

Diana stared at him for a
long while. She knew she desperately wanted to trust Cat
implicitly. But, even the elders had admitted that there must be a
mole assisting the black panther in the Zuni tribe. Nothing else
made any sense.

And, she desperately
wanted to go to the Salt Lake. She was tired of being kept in the
dark. Tired of being protected. She knew, if nothing else, Charlie
would be willing to tell her what he knew about the prophecy. And,
besides that, hadn’t Charlie saved her life more than
once?

So, with only slight
reluctance, she gave Charlie her hand and he lifted her into the
truck.


The lake is a ways
north,” he said as he started the car, “it’ll be a while before we
get there.”

They drove in silence for
a long while as Diana fought off the urge to go back to sleep.
Though her body was aching and she felt more exhausted than she
ever had in her life, her mind was still buzzing with a series of
problems.

How could Cat have known
about the attack on her apartment and saved her? Perhaps he had
worked the plan out with the black cougar beforehand and saved her
only to gain her trust. But, then, why had he taken such pains to
get her to the reservation. And, most importantly, why had she seen
Cat in her vision? The elders had said she had seen her mate. That
was Cat. Why would he have betrayed her if they were meant to be
together?

Unable to settle this
particular question herself, she looked to Charlie.


I saw him,” Diana told
him cryptically.


Saw who?” Charlie asked
absently, taking a right turn down a small dirt road heading
north.


In the vision. I saw Cat.
The elders said that it meant he was supposed to be my mate. But,
if he betrayed me…”


The elders were wrong,”
Charlie said immediately.


What do you
mean…?”


They were wrong about who
you were meant to be mated to,” Charlie said. She felt something
like a deep stone fall to her chest. That couldn’t be true. Cat and
Diana had a bond, she had felt the talisman glow, she knew when he
kissed her...


The truth is,” Charlie
continued, “there were two possible men the salt woman could be
mated to. It was becoming more and more clear that the second man
would be the choice. That is why Cat decided to take matters into
his own hands. He wanted to be the mate at any cost.”


And how do you know
that?” Diana asked.


I know,” he said slowly,
“because I’m the other mate.”

Diana’s heart stopped
fully when she turned and looked at Charlie. Everything inside of
her fought against this new idea. It was not that she did not like
Charlie. He was, indeed, handsome and charming but...she felt
nothing towards him in that way. No true connection like she had
with Cat. And, besides, it was Cat who had given her the talisman.
Sure that meant something...


But the talisman…” Diana
began.


Cat’s bewitched it,”
Charlie said as they turned another sharp corner down a dirt road,
“when you wear it, you see things the way he wants you to see them.
You’ll have to take it off when we get to the Salt
Lake.”


But...”


You should rest now,”
Charlie said without looking at her, “It’ll take us a while to get
there.”

Diana sank back in her
seat but did not, could not rest. Instead, she tried, desperately
to make sense of what she had been told.

If Charlie was to be
believed, then nearly everything Cat had told her about the
prophecy, about them, had been a lie. She was the Salt Mother but,
was not meant to be mated to Cat. She was, instead, meant to be
mated to Charlie.

And what would happen if
she was mated to the wrong man? What would happen if she entered
the Salt lake too quickly? What would happen when she entered the
Salt Lake period? No one had bothered to tell her that.

She looked to Charlie and
knew that he would not be willing to answer any more questions.
Certainly not about Cat and mating.

So, Diana leaned her head
against the cool window and tried her best not to think of Cat
running his lips across her neck, his hands moving up her leg, his
whisper against her ear.

She closed her eyes as she
remembered him. Despite what Charlie had told her, she still
desired him. She felt a thrill rush through her body and move to a
pool of desire between her thighs when she imagined what Cat had
wanted to do to her. What he would have done, if his nobility had
not stopped him.

She tried as best she
could to will these thoughts away as they drove further on. None
the less, when she closed her eyes, she could see nothing but Cat’s
face, staring down at her with those dark, piercing
eyes.

Soon, that face
disappeared to be replaced by his cougar. The smooth, tan mountain
lion who, she thought, had saved her at her apartment. He padded
towards her but, before he could reach Diana, she saw the large
black cougar come from behind, leap over Cat and pin Diana to the
ground. The cougar tore at her necklace. The talisman burned
against her chest…


Diana! Diana wake
up!”

Diana’s eyes flew open and
she looked around for a moment expecting to see the large black
cougar bounding towards her. It took several deep breaths for Diana
to convince herself that it had been a dream. Nothing but a
dream.


We’re here,” Charlie said
from the driver’s seat. She looked over at Charlie who was eyeing
her with a concerned expression.


Is everything ok?” he
asked.


Yes,” Diana said
hesitantly, “just had a...a nightmare.”

Diana could still feel the
burning sensation of the talisman against her chest. She looked
down and was shocked to find that she had not imagined that. The
talisman she wore was indeed burning. It was not the calm, gentle
tingle she felt when Cat touched her it was the same harsh, warning
she had felt the night she saw the black cougar.

Diana saw Charlie’s eyes
turn to the talisman as well.


You should take that
off,” he said almost sharply, “it’s too dangerous to have a
connection to Cat while you’re here.”

Something in Diana’s head
protested. Something in the back of her mind told her she would be
in more danger with the talisman off than on.


I’ll keep it on,” Diana
said firmly. Charlie rolled his eyes and looked about to argue with
her, “Just until we get to the lake,” Diana amended
gently.

Though she still wasn’t
quite sure what to believe about Cat, Charlie or anything else, she
did know that, while she was in Charlie’s custody, it was best not
to antagonize him.


Suit yourself,” he said
with a shrug. He opened the door and got out of the truck. Diana
followed his example and they stepped out onto a dirt road without
a lake in site.


The lake’s about half a
mile walk,” Charlie said in answer to Diana’s unspoken
question.


And we can’t drive?”
Diana asked somewhat bitterly. She had never particularly liked
walking. Not to mention, she had had a particularly exhausting
day.


It’s best if we don’t,”
Charlie said.

They plodded on in silence
for a moment before Diana remembered something of importance Cat
had told her. It was something the elders had said as
well.


If I’m not supposed to go
to the lake until I’ve been trained,” she began, “why will it be
safe for me there now?”

Charlie let out a low
chuckle and said: “Don’t worry Diana, you will be
trained.”


By who?”


By me.”

Diana stopped and looked
at him unsure. He looked back at her and gave her the same cocky
smirk she had seen him wear when they first met.


You don’t want to be
trained by me?” he asked. The tenor of his voice made this sound
suggestive. Diana blushed in spite of herself.


I didn’t mean that,” she
said quickly. She could feel a blush coming into her cheeks.
Charlie must have seen it too because his smile
broadened.


I only meant,” she said
trying her best to stay on topic, “the elders made it sound like
training was real...involved. It sounds like a lot for one person
to have to take on.”


Well,” Charlie said as
they reached a crest in the hillside, “I won’t have to take it on
alone.”


What do you mean by
that?” Diana asked.


You’ll see,” he said. An
uneasy feeling took up residence in Diana’s stomach. She felt the
burning of the cougar talisman against her skin. It became hotter
as they neared the lake. She wondered, now, if she should have
gotten in the car with Charlie if she should have come to the lake
at all. Now, looking back, she wondered if she should have waited
if she should have refused to leave the reservation.

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