Silver Wood Coven Book 3
The triangle of love that unites them gives them the strength to go on.
Still reeling from the brutal attack that has left Templar Michael Charbon fighting for his life, Summer and warlock Troy Atwater flee with him from New York. As they head to the Silver Wood Coven for refuge, they know two things: they will not be welcome, and the coven harbors a traitor.
Though Summer still suffers from amnesia, her confidence in her strange abilities begins to grow. But never does it seem more powerful when she is with the two men that she loves. She knows in her soul that are meant to be together, in every imaginable way. Unfortunately, the two men don’t agree.
At the coven, the reception of the trio is even worse than they’d feared, as relationships and people are pushed to the breaking point. But in the turmoil, Summer’s power surfaces in unexpected ways. As she and her lovers struggle with the reality of it, a new threat creeps from the shadows.
What Readers Are Saying
Riveting! As always, Hazel Hunter keeps you on the edge of your seat. The scenes certainly got steamy in this book as Summer, Michael, and Troy finally come together as one. I'm continuing on to the next book right away!
Wow this is exciting and action packed. So much drama and steamy spicy hotness it is impossible to put down! I can't wait to see what happens next in the series. It's fantastic.
I think what I enjoy most about this series is that it’s not just another smut series with nothing but menage sex. And hey, don't get me wrong, I certainly find that as hot as the next gal, but with this series you get that along with a heavy dose of a serious plot with believable (ok, paranormally believable) scenarios full of drama that only a great author can provide. There's more to the characters than the lust that boils between them and definite family drama, which is something everyone can relate to.
I'm still loving psycho Gideon, though it might seem morbid to see him as comic relief. When one killer meets another on the road it is still funny.
I stopped what I was already reading and did not stop until I finished. I am drawn in and can not wait to watch this play out.
Summer couldn’t remember enough of her life to know how good or bad it was, but she could still measure her situation against her most recent experiences.
Waking up covered in blood in Central Park with no memory of who she was or how she’d gotten there? Horrible.
Having mysterious powers that revived dead plants and caused people to be generous to her? Amazing.
Nearly being raped by a deranged immortal maniac? Terrifying.
Finding out she was a witch, falling for both an immortal warlock and an immortal witch hunter, and bouncing between a secret coven in the New Hampshire mountains and a secret order of Templars in New York City? That went all over the scale: Incredible. Confusing. Wonderful. Troubling.
Yet even with the wide range of all those experiences, none of them had prepared her for what had just happened.
Summer stared at the dead body of the Templar assassin who had just tried to kill her with a battle-axe. The gory weapon lay a few feet away next to the assassin’s decapitated head. If not for Michael Charbon diving in front of her and Troy Atwater, they would both be dead now. Michael, who had nearly been cut in two by the same axe, had pulled the weapon out of his body and used it and the last of his strength to kill the assassin. Now he lay with his head in her lap, unconscious and dying from the terrible wound in his side. The smell of blood tainted the cold, damp air, and she shook her head as something wailed in her ears.
Sirens. The police were coming. Of course they were. One man was dead, another soon would be, and while violence on the streets of New York City was common, a beheading was not.
“Summer, we have to go,” Troy said and opened the Jeep door that had been axed by the assassin. He hauled Michael Charbon’s limp, heavy body up from the blood-stained sidewalk. “In the car. Now.”
His commanding tone helped blast away Summer’s shock-induced numbness. Troy served as a field investigator for the Magus Corps, and now he sounded as if he’d shifted entirely into his soldier persona. She quickly climbed into the back seat, helping Troy as he lifted the injured Templar into the Jeep. She cradled Michael’s head with one arm and pressed her trembling hand over his wound. Blood was still streaming from it, but in that instant she knew what they had to do.
“Freeze the wound,” she said.
“What?” Troy’s shock turned to anger. “I can’t.”
“Your ability to control water can freeze his blood and tissues, Major, and it will buy us some time.” Time to do what, she wasn’t sure, but her instincts told her this was the right course. “Please, Troy. Do it now or he’ll die.”
The warlock’s jaw tightened, but when she lifted her hand away he placed his over the wound. As he closed his eyes to focus, Summer glanced over her shoulder at the dead assassin’s remains and the axe. She felt something move in her chest, a surge of power. She watched as a brilliant green light spread over the dead man and the weapon. When the light vanished, so had the body, the axe, and all of the blood.
I did that.
Summer didn’t understand the Wiccan abilities she possessed, or why in a crisis they seemed to work independently of her. But her magic had never hurt anyone. Seeing that happen again also reassured her.
If I can make a dead body and a crime scene disappear, I can save Michael. I have to.
Troy’s magic turned the air inside the Jeep frigid. Summer shivered as she watched the wounded Templar’s pale face, and saw the frost creeping across the bloody fabric of his shirt. When Troy lifted his hand, ice encased the wound, and the bleeding had stopped.
“Don’t ask,” she said when the warlock glanced out the back window and saw what she had done. “Just get us out of here.”
Troy muttered something in Welsh as he clambered in behind the wheel. He started the engine and headed down the street, just as blue and red flashing lights appeared behind them. Summer wanted to shout at him to go faster, until she realized he was driving at a normal speed to avoid drawing attention from the arriving cops. Once he turned a corner and was out of sight, he floored it. He deftly dodged through traffic and made quick turns until they were miles away and merging onto the interstate.
“We can’t take him to a hospital, not with an axe wound,” Troy told her. “He won’t live long enough to make it to Silver Wood.”
“I know,” she said and looked ahead.
The highway stretched endlessly ahead of them as she felt Michael’s skin growing cold and clammy under her palm. He was barely breathing now, and his face was so white it looked carved from alabaster.
“Troy, take the next exit, and find a place to park where we won’t be seen from the road.”
His hands tightened on the wheel. “I can’t fix this, Summer.”
She heard the pain in his voice and wished she could touch him, too.
“I know, but if you help me, I think I can repair some of the damage.”
Troy drove off an exit for Pelham Bay Park and after a few minutes pulled off onto a dirt road that led into a thickly wooded area. Once they were safely out of sight, he parked the Jeep and turned around. His gaze moved from Michael’s ice-encased wound to her face.
“So you think you can heal the dying now?”
“No. But I know I can bring dead things back to life, and when the three of us touch my power goes through the roof.” She reached out to him with her free hand, but when he didn’t take it she added, “We’re the only chance Michael has. Please, trust me.”
Troy got out of the driver’s seat and came into the back with her. He lifted Michael’s heavy, long legs and draped them across his strong thighs.
“You can’t control this power of yours yet,” he reminded her. “We could end up killing him.”
Summer saw her own pain reflected in his brilliant blue eyes.
“If we don’t try, he’ll die anyway.”
She reached down and clasped Michael’s hand. Then she reached out to Troy.
“Gods help us,” he muttered and laced his fingers through hers.
His touch kindled the power lurking inside her. It billowed and raced through her blood to every part of her body. This time she was expecting it. She wrapped her mind around it, riding it as it poured into Michael and Troy.
We cannot survive apart.
Summer stared down at the ice melting away from the terrible wound. She sent her love for Michael through her rejuvenating ability, willing his torn flesh to mend itself and restore his life. As she did, the other side of her power rose into her consciousness, cool and deliberate as it took control of her mind. She regarded the injured Templar with a fierce determination.
This warrior belongs to me. He shall not die this day.
The interior of the Jeep turned a glowing bright green as Summer’s power funneled into Michael through his wound. It burned away his bloodied shirt to expose the full horror of the wound. But a lacy web of green energy quickly formed over it. Bright red beads began to drip steadily from her fingernails as well as Troy’s. They slid across Michael’s skin to the wound, where they sank inside him.
Summer looked up to see Troy staring at her, his eyes filled with the same green light. Although he was completely under her control physically, she could sense fear for her and Michael building in his heart. Although she wished she could reassure him, it was the other who spoke to him in his mind, offering a quiet promise.
Do not be afraid, Sentinel. Your brother shall live.
Beneath the glowing web the ruined muscles and torn blood vessels slowly knit themselves whole again. Once his internal tissues were restored the sliced edges of his skin stretched over them. The web contracted to a single line of green light that fused them together and faded away to reveal a new, raw-looking pink scar. His flesh was still horribly bruised, and his side swollen. But as the power retreated back inside her she knew that the promise would be kept. Michael would survive.
Gently she drew her hand away from Troy’s. As soon as the contact ended his eyes returned to their usual radiant blue.
“Apparently you can heal people,” he said, sounding rather dazed.
When she looked down, Michael’s face had regained some color, and his broad chest rose and fell with easier, deeper breaths. His eyebrows furrowed just a little, and then his lips parted.
“Beauty,” he breathed.
One side of his mouth curved up, but then fell, as he slipped away again.
• • • • •
Troy had four hours to think on the drive from Pelham Bay Park to the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Summer elected to stay in the back with Michael, wedging herself in one corner with the Templar’s head still in her lap. He could see her reflection in the rearview mirror and regularly checked on her, expecting her to fall asleep during the long ride. Instead she sat very still and watched the passing scenery, her fingers gently stroking Michael’s forehead.
She was watching over him, the same way Troy watched over her.
He knew of many skillful healers among the Wiccan, and even a few among the ranks of the Magus Corps who were exceptionally powerful. It would have been difficult for any of them to save a man as seriously wounded as Michael. None of them could have done it as quickly as Summer had.
Then there was the question of what to do about Michael Charbon. After nearly being cut in two by that giant assassin, it was obvious that he couldn’t go back to the Templars. He had no family outside his brotherhood in the order. As far as Troy knew he was the only friend Michael had.
If we can even be called friends.
Over the centuries the truce they had struck up had kept them first from killing each other, and then had evolved into a reluctant alliance. They had exchanged information and even a few prisoners, but always in some effort to avoid more violence. It could not always be avoided, however. Troy knew Michael had killed at least as many Wiccans as he had Templars. But there had always been good reasons for those deaths. Michael had stopped dozens of rogue witches from preying on humans, while Troy had prevented at least as many lone Templars from attacking vulnerable covens or untaught Wiccans. They had done what was necessary, but only when given no other choice.
My father won’t care. The moment Abel lays eyes on Michael, all he’ll see is the enemy.
Troy thought of the year he had spent chained to Michael, and what they had done to survive and escape that Saracen hellhole. It had taken Troy another year to make it back to his home coven in Wales. The moment his father had laid eyes on him, as thin and exhausted as Troy had been, he’d not welcomed him. He’d sneered at him for being foolish enough to roam the world in pursuit of idle pleasures. That day had been the last time he’d ever felt any amount of love for his father.
“Troy,” Summer said. When he glanced in the rearview mirror, Summer smiled wistfully at him. “Would you please stop at that rest area up there?”
He looked ahead and saw it was the same place where he’d pulled off the first time he’d brought Summer to Silver Wood.
Thinking she needed to use the facilities he parked near the rest rooms, but when Summer eased out of the back seat, she walked up to the driver’s door.
“Come out here, please.”
Troy quickly climbed out frowning. “Is something wrong?” His gaze shifted to the back seat. “Is Michael–”
Summer put her hands on his shoulders and stood on tiptoe to put her mouth on his. She pulled his head down to kiss him passionately, her lips as sweet as her tongue was bold. Troy clamped his hands on her waist to pull her into him, his muscles coiling as his need for her exploded into an almost violent hunger. He turned and shoved her against the Jeep, pinning her there with his body weight. He kissed her mouth and neck and covered her breasts with his hands, relishing the sound of her soft moan. The scent of her changed as her arousal blended with his.
A low groan from the back seat made them both freeze, and Troy forced himself to release her and step back. “Sorry, I…I’m sorry.”
“I’m not,” she said and frowned up at him. “I’m your lover, Troy. You can put your hands on me any time you like.”
“So can Michael, apparently.” There, he’d said it, and Troy hated himself the moment the words left his mouth. “Forget that. It’s none of my business.”
“No, you’re right. He’s also my lover. I told you that back in the city.” She said it frankly, and with none of the shame he’d expected. “Now that I have you both, I’m not going to give up either of you. I want you to understand that before we return to Silver Wood.”
He knew Summer was relatively inexperienced when it came to sex. While she had been an eager and generous lover with him, it had been obvious that everything they did had been new to her.
“Do you expect me to help you explain this ménage à trois to Erica and the others?” he asked.
He wasn’t even sure he understood it all that well himself.
Summer shook her head. “We’re not going to discuss it with them. This is our business.” Her expression softened. “Sex is definitely playing a part in this. When I was with you at your house, somehow Michael was with us, too. I know you felt him as much as I did. The same thing happened when I was with him in his apartment. You were there with us, Troy. I could even smell you.”
He thought of the strange spell that had come over him while he’d secretly spied on Summer and Michael making love.
“I was across the street watching you and Michael. Something took over—your curse, maybe—and I felt as if I were having sex with you. I didn’t touch myself, and I still came.”
“It’s not a curse,” she protested. “It’s us. You, me and him. We’re connected now.” She glanced back at the Jeep. “I just don’t know how or why.”
On some level Troy agreed with her, but he knew sharing her with Michael would be difficult if not impossible. The Templar loved her so much he’d nearly died to protect her. He knew if he’d been in Michael’s place he’d have done the same.
“If you had to choose between the two of us, who would you pick?”
She pressed her lips into a thin line, and shook her head. “I’ve already made my choice.” She blew out an exasperated breath. “Let’s go.”
She stalked around the Jeep, and climbed in the front passenger seat.
Troy got in beside her. He could almost hear the anger simmering inside her, and found that as puzzling as her answer to his question.
“Look, I had a hard time at first, when I saw you with Michael,” he found himself confessing. “Then I remembered that I have no claim on you. You’re not my mate. I also knew you had feelings for Michael before you met me.” When she didn’t say anything he sighed. “Summer, I’ve told you before that sex is sacred to all Wiccans. Therefore what you did with Michael is sacred to me. I do believe that.”
She sniffed. “You’re still jealous.”
“Oh, yeah,” he agreed. “Because I’m still a guy. I thought of you as mine when we were together at Silver Wood. I made that assumption again when you got out of the car just now and kissed me. I’ve had you, Summer, and I want you again. That’s not going to change.” He hesitated before he added, “Michael is going to feel the same, probably more so. He’s not like us. He’s been expected to live a celibate life for centuries.”
She turned to face him. “You know something? I told Michael that you and I were together. In fact, I taunted him with it. He wasn’t jealous. He understood. If I’d wanted only you, he would never have touched me. But that’s the thing—I want you both. I need you both.”
“Right,” Troy said and felt a surge of frustration. “Let’s be practical for a fucking second. Assuming Michael survives, and my father doesn’t turn us away, do you really think you can handle juggling two lovers at the same time? Do we take turns with you? How are you going to make it work? Write up a fucking schedule?”
Summer curled over, covering her face with her hands as she made a strange sound. Troy thought she was crying until he heard the sound again and saw the way her shoulders were shaking.
“It’s not funny,” he told her.
She sat up and wiped her eyes with the heels of her hands before she answered him.
“You think I’d need a schedule for…” she trailed off into another spate of laughter.
Troy’s lips curved a little as he realized what he’d said. “Sorry. But if you are going to make a schedule, can I have Saturday nights? Sundays are more Michael’s territory anyway.”
“Stop,” Summer gasped. “I’m going to wet my pants.”
“Okay,” he said, laughing a little himself. “Okay.”
Although she hadn’t answered any of his questions, Troy felt a little better now. If they could laugh about it, they could work it out.
“I guess what I really want to know is why. Under all that scary power I know you’re not a wild thing. You’re sweet, and I doubt you’ve had more than one or two lovers in your life. So what made you decide to take on both of us, lady?”
Some of the hilarity left her expression as she sighed. “I don’t know. I just feel it, here.” She pressed a hand over her heart. “Like it’s the way it has to be for me, and not because of the curse, either. When I’m with you and Michael I feel as if I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be. That the three of us are connected by something more powerful than we are. And when it comes to the sex, I think…” She stopped and shook her head. “Um, no. You don’t want to hear this.”
“It’s okay,” Troy told her. “Whatever it is, you can tell me. After everything that’s happened, you’re not going to shock me.”
“This might,” Summer said and took a deep breath. Then faced him again. “I think I know why I felt both of you when I had sex with you individually. I think we’re meant to be together in that, too. We’re supposed to have sex together. You, me and Michael.”
- Book 1: Rescued
- Book 2: Stolen
- Book 3: United
- Book 4: Betrayed
- Book 5: Revealed
- Book 6: Lost
- Book 7: Divided
- Book 8: Gone
- Book 9: Burned
- Book 10: Reclaimed
- Book 11: Call of Fate
- Book 12: Sea of Love
- Book 13: Palace of Pleasure
- Book 14: House of Desire
- Book 15: Ship of Dreams
- Book 16: Lens of Time
- Silver Wood Coven Box Set