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Taken by Her Mates(8)

By:Grace Goodwin



I wanted that kind of connection that was in both ceremonies, and I would have it.

I had a match. A woman had been processed and matched to me. To that fucking hot mating ceremony. The Interstellar Bride Program’s match was almost one hundred percent perfect. That left no doubt that there was a woman just for me. I had no second, no throne, and no future, but none of that mattered. The only thing—the only person—that mattered to me was this woman on Earth who was my mate. She’d been denied transport by my father. That didn’t negate the match, the bond that we shared. It only made me want her even more. I would not be denied her. I had to wonder what she had thought of me when she’d been rejected. The hurt must have felt something like the rage I had burning inside at my father’s intervention.

She would not be denied her mate, her match, just because of my asshole of a father. She would not be a victim of his machinations.

She was an innocent.

She was mine.

If the processing center wouldn’t sanction the transport, I would simply go to Earth and take her.





Chapter Three





Prince Nial, Battleship Deston, Transport Room



I walked the corridors of the battleship like a monster. Hardened warriors averted their eyes, unable to stand the sight of my silver flesh. I doubted it was because of me, but what could happen to them. I cared not. In a matter of hours I would be on Earth, my bride in my arms. This was a mission that would not fail.

Once my mate was secured, I would find a warrior willing to share her, I would name a second mate to protect her, and then find a way to reclaim my throne. As I walked, rage curled in a tight knot in my gut. My father was foolish, and I had spent too many years blindly following his orders. It was time to take the throne from him, by force if necessary. His tactics in the war against the Hive were ineffective and weak and I was proof of that. If not for Commander Deston’s masterful leadership of the battle fleet, we would be lost already.

The transport room was nearly full. Commander Deston, his mate Hannah, and their second, Dare stood waiting for me near the edge of the transport platform. Two warriors I did not recognize worked the control station, inputting the coordinates for my transfer to Earth’s processing center, where just a few days ago my mate had been turned away. Turned away! My rage only grew at how she had been rejected.

Two huge warriors stood guard at the door. At the sight of them, I realized the risk my cousin took for me. Not all on board the ship were happy to know a contaminated warrior walked among them, prince or not.

“Commander.” I clasped my cousin’s forearm in the old greeting, unable to express in words what this chance meant to me. By sending me to Earth to hunt my bride, he defied both my father and the entire planetary council. It showed that he had little regard for my father and a strong belief in the matching system.

I glanced at Hannah, who stood by his side. So small, so frail in comparison to her two mates, yet strong and powerful. She truly was the strong one in their bond. I glanced at their matching collars and I envied their connection.

I, too, would have that bond. Soon. I just had to get to Earth and find her and bring her home.

“Safe journey, Nial,” Deston said. “Once we transport you, your father will surely lock down the transport stations and, most likely, send bounty hunters to track you down.”

“I’m not afraid of my father.”

Commander Deston nodded with a deep respect I’d not seen from him prior. I’d been a spoiled child before. I knew that now and I did not cower from that admission. A pampered prince who wanted to play war, but did not fully understand the costs. I was not that man any longer. I released the commander and bowed to his bride. “Lady Deston.”

“Good luck.” She leaned up on tiptoe and kissed me on the cheek, my left cheek. The act made me more convinced than ever that an Earth bride was my only chance of finding a female who could accept me as I was now.

Her second mate, Dare, met my gaze and I envied the slight hint of silver in his own eye. He, too, had been captured. But as the Prime heir, I’d taken priority with the Hive, and they’d begun their work on me first. Dare had escaped their technology with only the slightest hint of silver in one eye, a hint no one but those closest to him knew about.

Dare held out his arm, and I took it. “How will you protect your mate without a second?” He held on when I would have released him. “You should choose a second, Nial. Take him with you.”

“I am an outcast, a contaminate.” I shook my head. “I could not ask that of any warrior. Not yet.”

Still, Dare held on. “Ask what? To protect and care for a beautiful bride? To share her body and fuck her until she screams her release?” He grinned then and I saw Hannah blush. “Trust me, Nial, acting as a second mate is no hardship.”

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