Redemption: (Dark Desires Book 3)

DARK DESIRES

REDEMPTION

 

 

 

 

 

KOURTNEY
KING

COPYRIGHT

 

Dark Desires: Redemption © 2016
Kourtney King

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This
is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents either are the
products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance
to actual persons, living or dead, businesses, companies, events, or locals is
entirely coincidental. 

Visit
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www.kourtneyking.wordpress.com

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OTHER BOOKS

 

DARK
DESIRES SERIES

GENESIS

DELIVERANCE

REDEMPTION

THE
IMPALER SERIAL NOVELLAS

ROMANIAN
CHRONICLES VOLUME ONE – to receive your free copy,
sign up to the mailing list here

DEDICATION

 

To all the fans that have
loved, read and followed the journey of Vladimir and Valerie.

Chapter One

 

Valerie
was alone in the suite. She didn’t need to check the lounge on the other side
of the door, or the spare bedroom, or even take a walk along the balcony, to
know that Vlad had left. She could feel that he was no longer there. Was he
coming back?

Don’t
be stupid. He’s not going to leave you here.
That didn’t mean he would stay with her. This is
why she hid what had happened to her in the first place. She didn’t want to be
pitied. She didn’t want to be looked at differently. It was bad enough that she
couldn’t think of the incident that had occurred a couple of days ago without
disgust welling up in her gut at her body’s response. Now she had to contend
with how Vlad would look at her from here on out. No, she refused to let him
see her in that light.

Walking
to the bathroom, Val washed her face. She needed to stop crying. She was not a
cute crier. Vlad had bought her a few items of clothing the day before. She
hadn’t really paid much attention to the style or his selection. Instead, she
allowed him to pick what he thought would suit her. He had done a great job the
last time he went shopping for her. She took off her robe and put on the black
bra and thong set along with a white knee-length dress over it. She wanted to
go back to the woman she was a few months ago. She would dress like her, behave
like her and soon enough she would begin to feel like her again.

Just
as she was tying the straps of the wedges around her ankles, she heard the
front door open. When Vlad walked into the bedroom, she stood up and looked at
him, forcing a smile to her face.

“I
want you to see a doctor.” That came out harsher than he had intended but it
didn’t matter. What was important right now was making sure that Valerie got
medical attention, something he should have done on day one if he had been
thinking rationally.

The
feigned smile fell away instantly. She hadn’t thought about the repercussions
of what had happened because she tried not to think about that morning at all.
As far as she was concerned, she wanted to bury that moment so far away she
would forget it completely. However, it had happened, and now she was forced to
think about it. Keyaan hadn’t used a condom. Oh God, what if she had been
infected with an STI? She had also had unprotected sex with Vlad putting his
health at risk too. She hadn’t meant to drag him into the small piece of hell
that was spawned that morning. For some reason, there was a barrier that
stopped her from opening up to him about her myriad of feelings. The only
sliver of light was that she had gone on the injection after her last pregnancy
scare when they first met. She was due for another one soon.

 

After
the confession Valerie gave him once he sat her down, his world had crashed
around him and after taking a few minutes to collect himself, Vlad had made her
an appointment with the best private physician in the city he could find. An
hour later, they sat in the waiting room. When her name was called, he stood up
with her. She placed her small hand on his ample chest, preventing him from following
her in.

"I'll
be okay," she told him.

As
much as he wanted to argue the matter, he held himself back. She had come
willingly. However, she was uncharacteristically quiet, more so than before.
“Are you sure?”

“Yes.
I have to learn to stand up for myself, remember?”

He
did remember. He had given her that little nugget, of what he then thought was
wisdom, the day Dr DeBeer had been a complete bigot. Now he thought it was
utter bullshit. He should be there for her. Why is it that whenever she needed
him the most, he had failed her and failed spectacularly? He sat back down and
waited, wishing he could go back in time and change the way he had handled
numerous situations when it came to Valerie.

 

Dr
Uzin had the kindest voice and an air of calm that had immediately put Valerie
at ease during her examination. As Valerie was about to leave the doctor’s
voice stopped her from walking out. “I’m speaking as Aylin now, not a doctor.
I’m sorry about what happened to you, Valerie. I don’t claim to know what
you’re going through, but I hope you speak to someone about this. It may take
time, but it will help you heal.”

"Thank
you… I'll think about it." With that, she had left to return to Vlad.

 

To
say things had been awkward between them for the last two hours was an
understatement. Vlad wouldn’t look at her, let alone be in the same room that
she was in. The only words exchanged between them were about what had occurred
inside the examination room. Dr Uzin drew Valerie’s blood for the STI tests and
gave her a vaginal exam. She asked her a few questions and told her she would
contact her with the results in a few days.

When
they crawled into bed, that night they slept on opposite sides with a large space
separating them. She wanted to crawl up next to him and take comfort in his
large arms but his earlier reaction when finding out that she had been raped
forbade her from being vulnerable in front of him.

Vlad
had gotten a hold of Keyaan’s medical records a few hours after returning from
the hospital and was relieved to find that the man was physically healthy
despite his sick mind. He couldn’t imagine another curveball being thrown at
his angel. In any event, Vlad wanted to be the first to know. He was her first
line of defence.  It hadn’t escaped him that she was still uncomfortable
with people in her personal space. The bathroom door was always locked when she
went to shower, and Valerie got dressed behind closed doors as well. That is
why when they got into bed he made sure to give her her space.

 

The
sounds of the bustling streets woke him. The room was still dark with the heavy
curtains blocking out the morning sun. He turned to his side to check on
Valerie, but she was gone. Shooting up from the bed, he walked into the
bathroom and found it empty. He checked the large lounge, the spare bedroom and
even the balcony, but there was no sign of her. His mind went into a panic. Had
he been drugged? If there was any disturbance, he should have heard it. There
were no signs that she had been forcibly removed.

If
she had left of her own volition, then where would she go? She had no money or
ID on her. His heart beat an erratic rhythm. After killing Keyaan, he thought
that he had eliminated all threats. However, there were other unsavoury
characters he had done business with, people that may try to come after him by
attacking his one weakness. Frustrated at the incompetent fool he had turned
into, he grabbed a paperweight from the hotel table and threw it against the
wall behind the bar, shattering the mirror of his image. If something had
happened to her again because of him, she would hate him, and he would never be
able to live with himself.

“Please,
God no,” he pleaded to no one in particular. He couldn’t imagine reliving
another day of the sickening worry that had gripped him over the past month.
Vlad couldn't think straight. He didn't even know where to begin his search of
her. He went back into the bedroom, picked up his phone and made a call. 

“Mike,”

“Vladimir."

“I
can’t find Valerie. We went to bed together last night, but when I woke up this
morning, she was gone."

Mike
thought that this situation, involving the woman that had become Vladimir’s
obsession over the past four months, had been resolved. He was an information
specialist. However, he was beginning to feel like a personal PI when it came
to Valerie Thusi. "Are you sure that it's foul play? You did kill the man
who was responsible for orchestrating her kidnapping.”

"What
else would it be if not foul play? She has no money, no ID and no phone. Tell
me where she could have possibly gone to at the crack of dawn. I have to assume
the worst, all things considered." Vlad was not an optimistic guy. If his
upbringing had not taught him that life was waiting to backhand you, then
having the only joy in his world taken from him a month ago did.

“Fine.
Let’s assume that she was kidnapped again. How exactly do you expect me to
trace her? As you said, she had no ID, no money or credit cards, and no phone.”
There were a lot of things that he was capable of doing with the technology at
his disposal, but Mike was only human, not a miracle worker.

Vlad
went back into the master suite and checked his wallet. Everything was still in
place from his credit cards down to the LYR10 note. “She has nothing on her.
Not a fucking cent. Start from the hotel.”

"Okay,
Vlad. Let's say I trace her from the hotel. Then what?”

“Then
you do what it is I pay you to do, and you find her!” he roared into the phone.

Mike
took a deep breath. Vladimir was being irrational and wearing his patience
thin. Men feared him. No one would dare go near Valerie again unless they had a
death wish. He had killed a monarch of a country for her. If that didn't speak
volumes, then he wasn't sure what would.

*****

 

Valerie
sat in a small park and watched the city come to life. Businesses opened,
people came in for work and the streets filled with cars commuting to wherever
it is they had to be. Everything seemed so… normal. Regardless of what had
happened to her, life had gone on. She allowed herself to feel everything. The
anger of being molested, the heartbreak of losing Vlad and the confusion of
what she wanted to do next. She had missed out on school for over a month. What
would she tell the faculty administration, her friends, and her mother? God,
her mother, must be worried sick.

No
matter how deeply she felt for Vlad, and she was certain that she was now in
love with him, she knew that she had issues. Much deeper issues than he was
probably willing to deal with after rescuing her from that creep. God, she had
acted so pathetically when she’d practically begged him to stay. Even if she
could open up to him, she doubted it would go well.

Valerie
thought back to the fight they'd had when he’d asked her to move in. She had
broken down then and told her about how insecure she felt in their relationship.
It was only the bursting of the little bubble they had been wrapped in that had
prompted his revelation of how he felt towards her. The world they’d created
for themselves was falling apart and Vladimir hadn't said a word. Val would not
tell him how she felt this time around.

No,
things were different. They weren't going to live happily ever after. If he
didn't want to be with her, then she wouldn't force him to. Having decided that
going home was the best thing they could do right now, she walked back to the
hotel.

*****

 

“How
long has she been missing for?”

"How
am I supposed to know that? What didn't you understand about me saying that
when I woke up, she was gone? It could be a few hours or-" Vlad stopped
midsentence when he heard the door to the suite open. He walked out, forgetting
the conversation with Mike. Valerie was back.

He
placed the receiver back to his ear. “Never mind,” he said and hung up. “Where
have you been?”

Valerie
was on the other side of the bar counter staring at the broken shards,
wondering what had happened. She looked up at him and replied, “I went for a
walk.”

“Do
you know how worried I was about you?”

“I’m
sorry I didn’t let you know. I just needed time alone to think. What happened?”
she gestured to the broken mirror behind the bar with a slight nod of her head.

“Think
about what?”

Argh!
He was so one track minded at times, completely disregarding her questions
until he had gotten the answers he sought. “Everything. I took stock of my life
and… I was fine before you came along.  I’ll be fine after you leave.”
Whatever needed to be worked out between them would have to be done quickly.
The last time she got dumped she ran from the situation and ran straight into
the arms of Vlad. She couldn’t imagine anyone competing with Vladimir based on
how strongly she felt about him, much stronger than Valerie had felt about
Rehan, who she'd dated for close to a year. Either way, it was time for her to
face things head on, no matter how much it hurt.

“What
do you mean by that?”

Moving
to sit on the couch, she gathered her thoughts. “I mean that I’m not going to
be that sad girl at a bar trying to get over an ex this time. I’m going to be
Valerie – a woman with goals and ambitions, and wants and needs of my own;
attributes that existed before I met you; before I met Rehan.”

This
was the first time that Valerie had spoken her ex’s name, the man that had hurt
her so deeply she sought a quick fix with him. The only time she had ever
referred to him was that first night they met at the bar. He didn’t know
whether to be grateful to this Rehan for letting his angel go, or whether to
track him down and kill him for breaking her heart. It would be hypocritical of
him as he planned to do the same thing to her soon.

Vladimir
hated the fact that he was now classed with the lowlife. Regardless of what she
said, she wasn’t fine. Whatever Valerie was going through, he had to help her
overcome it before he walked away. He had to fix what he had broken when he chose
to insert himself into her life.

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