Lila's Wolf (Out of Time Book 1)

Lila's Wolf (Out of Time Book 1) by Sofia Grey Read Free Book Online Page A

Book: Lila's Wolf (Out of Time Book 1) by Sofia Grey Read Free Book Online
Authors: Sofia Grey
Tags: time travel romance
there would be no little chinks of light to creep in. He tested the length of the chain with his hands, walking his fingers up from his collar to the wall: long enough to stand, if he hunched over. Last time, he’d been forced to kneel for the duration of his punishment.
    The cellar smelled of rotten vegetables and fear, sweat, and other bodily functions overlaid with the coppery tang of blood. The odor crept into his nostrils. How many slaves had been beaten and whipped in the cellar? How many had died here? He shivered and breathed slowly through his mouth in an effort to minimise the stink. Think of Lila.
    He settled into the corner, tucked up his knees, and rested his chin on his hands. Lila hadn’t looked well. Her skin had been too pale, and she’d had shadows under her eyes as though she hadn’t slept in days. He’d swear she was thinner, too. His mind darted back to those precious seconds when he’d lain at her feet, absorbing her beauty and drawing strength, and hope, from her presence. Rowena had asked about her husband. A ghardian perhaps? Lila wouldn’t have made a commitment. It would just be part of her cover story here.
    In his society, couples were usually only paired up after an application had been accepted to raise a family group. An appropriate partner would be selected by the Council, and the two parties involved would undertake a formal commitment to each other for the duration of the child-raising period. Intimacy was unheard of, and sexual relationships were rare. Most couples managed conception through far more reliable insemination processes with children’s attributes selected by the council. Jared had heard tales of the deviants living in the remote colonies, and how they formed relationships in the old fashioned way. The way they did it in this age. He’d been tempted.
    What he felt for Lila could not be defined and constrained by the life he was expected to live. True, the rules were starting to relax a fraction and some ranks were allowed to propose their own choice of partner, still to be approved by the Council, of course. But even if he found some way to propose for Lila, he would never be selected as her partner. His odd-colored eyes made him poor genetic material. His only chance for any kind of life with her would be if they left society for a colony. Or if they ran away to another time.
    If he’d been able to persuade her, they could have joined up with the sprawling communities led by Ambrosius in the mountains. They’d have lived in a remote village, raised a family and led a simple but happy life together. He could see it in his head. Two, three, or even four little children with bright blue eyes and gleaming yellow hair. Chickens running wild, hunting dogs, and ponies gathered around the homestead. He’d be able to show Lila just how much he loved her, and living so far from habitation, it would have been almost impossible for the ghardians to find them.
    Karma was a bitch sometimes. He’d wanted them to run away and evade the ghardians. Now he relied on them for rescue.
     

Chapter Sixteen
    Lila
    Marc’s words hung in the air. On our own. No backup. No squadron of elite ghardians coming to our rescue. My tongue felt wooden when I tried to speak. “So what are we going to do?”
    The gentle thumb-brushing resumed. Soothing. “My first thought was for us to leave here in a few days and wait out the period somewhere local then head for the jump site. We come back to get Jared with a full squadron.”
    I nodded as he spoke. “Your first thought? Have you another idea now?”
    He made a little face. “I’ll see if I can fix the communicator and then try to send another message tomorrow night. It may have gone through. I just don’t know. There was no return signal and I couldn’t be sure I established contact, so we have to assume I didn’t.” He paused a moment, as though collecting his thoughts. “We need to understand why Rowena thinks you’re connected to

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