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Freeing Luka: Chapter 6

Alice ran down yet another white hallway, glancing at the messy directions she’d scrawled on her palm, the electric prod clutched in her other hand.

Before freeing Luka, she’d made sure that Helas and Sal weren’t wandering the halls. Fortunately for her, they’d both been in her room, attaching Luka’s new chains to her ceiling. When she’d learned she could remotely lock and unlock doors, Alice had taken the opportunity to seal them in her cell.

In addition to freeing Luka, she’d spoken to each of the Earth women. They’d been yelling questions to the camera, but she couldn’t hear them, so she’d tried to explain their situation quickly and told them she’d be unlocking their doors and then attempting to find them.

Alice had brought up a map of the facility and directed the women on how to get to a meeting place. Gishen hadn’t initially been very forthcoming with the map, explaining that none existed and he could give her directions instead. After a few quick electric zaps to his balls, he’d changed his tune.

Luckily, Alice was able to use the map to see that most of the women were being held in cells near each other. Hope swelled in her even more when she saw they were all located on the same floor.

She ran through a large set of doors and then down an enormous spiral staircase.

All she had to do now was find the women on the floor below her and then follow the route she’d memorized to freedom. Or at least the possibility of freedom. She still had no idea what they would do once they made it outside. Run in a random direction? Wait for Luka’s drugs to wear off and hope he could help?

She paused, glancing up the stairs. Where is he?

Alice was a reasonable woman and she knew there was no way for Luka to know where she was, but she didn’t have time to look for him. If it was a competition between him and the abducted women, she had to choose the women.

An unchained Luka had at least a fighting chance against their captors, but the women wouldn’t. Still, her heart ached thinking she might escape and leave him trapped here.

If I get out and you don’t, I’ll find help. I swear it.

She turned, running down the stairs once again. She needed to hang onto her newfound strength and not worry about her confused, drugged alien.

Bolting through the lower level doors, she looked around in a panic. Where are they?

The women were supposed to meet her here. Had something happened to them? Had they gotten lost?

Just as Alice began moving in the direction of their cells, she heard quick footsteps down a hall to her right.

Peeking around the corner, her heart leapt when she saw a small group of frightened-looking women running toward her.

A beautiful raven-haired woman near the front of the group greeted her. “Alice?”

“Yeah.” Alice panted, overwhelmed with joy at the sight of other humans.

“Sorry for the holdup. I’m Vanessa.” She pointed behind her toward the small woman Alice had seen crying. “We don’t think she speaks English, and she didn’t understand what you were saying. We had to practically drag her here.”

Alice nodded. “Thanks for making sure she came with you.” Moving back to the door, she said, “We have to get going. I’ve only seen three men who work here, but there might be more. The exit is on the top floor.”

Vanessa, along with a few others, nodded, moving to follow Alice toward the spiral staircase.

On their dash up the stairs, she only allowed herself a swift glance at the door leading to the floor with her and Luka’s cells.

When they finally reached the top floor, she glanced around the deserted hallway nervously. Seeing no sign of life, she waved her hand behind her, motioning for the women to follow toward the large, silver door at the end of the hallway. According to the map, this was the way out. She had no idea what she’d find beyond that door, but its proximity made confidence at their escape flourish.

Ice ran through her veins when Helas and Sal stepped from the shadows and blocked the door.

Alice skidded to a halt, causing some women to collide into her.

Helas gave a cruel, humorless laugh when they turned back in the direction of the staircase, only to find Gishen blocking their path.

How the hell did they all get free?

“Did you really think you could escape?” Helas taunted with a sneer. “A group of weak females?”

A loud, familiar roar sounded nearby, and a wicked grin spread over her face. “Not just a group of females.”

The women behind Alice cried out when Luka’s enraged yell sounded from near the top of the stairway. Alice looked over her shoulder to see a marvelous and terrifying sight. Luka was standing at the end of the hallway, eyes pitch-black. His naked chest rose and fell rapidly, and his gaze was fixed on her.

Without looking away, he grabbed a cowering Gishen by his throat and threw him into the wall like a ragdoll.

From in front of her, she heard Sal whisper, “He has his markings. We need to get out of here!”

Alice glanced down to his wrists in surprise and saw that there were, in fact, blue markings she hadn’t noticed before around his bloody wrists and fingers, and new black markings stretching along his forearms.

She turned to Helas, hoping to see the same fear he’d been instilling in her light up his eyes. Instead, she witnessed his cowardice.

Using an electric prod, he stunned Sal and then bolted out of the main door. She turned to Luka, hoping she could make him understand. “Luka! Get Helas!” She pointed to the still-open doorway Helas had just run through. He couldn’t get away with this. Even if they all managed to break free and get to safety, it’d be a hollow victory if Helas wasn’t punished.

Luka looked toward her finger, then the door, and curled his lip. He sprinted, running faster than anyone she’d ever seen, and caught the handle before the door fully closed.

Seemingly the bravest of the group, Vanessa leaned toward Alice. “Geez, he’s fast. Do you know him? Is he a white hat or black hat?”

“It’s a long story, but I think we can trust him. They drugged him, so he might be a little out of it right now,” Alice quickly explained before motioning for the women to follow her to the door.

Vanessa gave a derisive snort from behind her. “Yeah, well, it seems like you have him whipped, drugged and all.”

Alice scowled, feeling heat spread over her cheeks, but chose not to think about how true that statement might be. If his marks had appeared, that meant Luka thought of her as his mate. Assuming what she’d learned about mates from Helas was true, she’d have to deal with a drugged, newly mated male very soon. She could only hope he’d remain “whipped” after the threat of danger finally passed.

Alice held the electric prod in front of her when they reached the exit, where a crumpled, unmoving Sal still laid.

Keeping one eye on him, she pulled at the door handle. Locked!

Alice felt like an idiot for not thinking of this before. Of course it’d be locked! It’s a top-secret facility—why would they leave the front door open?

“What now?” an older woman with flowing white hair asked from behind her.

Alice’s mind raced. She tried to think through how they unlocked her door, but most of the time she was inside her cell when they locked and unlocked it, and Luka’s room had always been open when they’d brought her to him. She didn’t remember seeing any keys.

“The control room,” she muttered.

“What?” said Vanessa.

“Sorry, I’ve gotten used to talking to myself these days. Help me move this guy and put his hand on the door.”

A few of the women eyed the man wearily and didn’t move. Others rushed over to help.

As they hoisted Sal’s heavy weight, Alice explained, “When they took me to the control room today, that guy Helas put his palm on the door to open it. Like a scan.”

Sweat beaded Alice’s forehead as they tried to keep the man’s hand in place on the door while hefting his upper body awkwardly.

The women cheered when the door buzzed and unlocked.

A sudden groan from Sal made the women drop him and jump away. His head hit the tiled floor with a loud crack. Vanessa and Alice looked at each other with matching guilty grimaces before Vanessa finally shrugged. “Well, he was a bad guy anyway, right?”

Alice nodded, still feeling a twinge of guilt, and held the door open so the women could pass through in front of her.

When the last woman was out and only Alice remained, she took one final look at the pristine white hallway. The world that awaited her beyond these doors would be alien and probably terrifying, but at least she’d never have to see these hallways again.

On the opposite side of the doors, Alice found a set of stairs leading up to an opened hatch. Moonlight poured in, illuminating the steps as she climbed.

Taking her first deep breath of alien air, she stepped into the night.

The women were gathered together, looking around their surroundings, the wonder evident on their faces. Some gazed into the black sky, heavily littered with stars and unfamiliar galaxies. Others craned their necks to take in the jagged mountains behind them.

The hatch they’d just emerged from was in a small clearing. The air out here was damp and slightly warm, much like a rainforest. Behind them, sharp mountains rose diagonally. Their peaks sliced through wispy translucent clouds and stood out starkly against two large rising moons, one of which had a faint ring around it.

To their left, the ground sloped and transformed into a dense forest. To their right, the ground inclined and carved a trail through the rocky mountain pass. Immediately in front of them, the land stretched out flat and bare as far as the eye could see.

Alice squinted, trying to make out any signs of civilization.

A short, young woman with perfectly highlighted hair said, “Well, Toto, I’ve a feeling—”

“If you say that line right now, I swear to God” interrupted a tall, slim woman with a surly expression.

The shorter woman held up her hands and tipped her head in mock surrender.

The sound of shuffling to their left made them all jump then tense. From the corner of her eye, Alice glimpsed the small woman with salon-quality hair crouched in a fighting stanceAt least one of us knows what we’re doing.

Alice stood still, her breath trapped in her throat as they waited to see the cause of the noise.

Luka appeared from around the base of the mountain, an unconscious Helas in tow.

Alice clapped her hand over her mouth when she took in the swollen, bloody state of Helas’ face. Her worry ebbed slightly after seeing the shallow rise and fall of the unconscious man’s chest.

Luka dragged the pitiful-looking man to Alice and placed him at her feet, then stared fixedly at her.

Vanessa chimed in from behind her, “Well, I guess he knows how to fetch.”

A few of the women snickered, but Alice shot her a glare.

Vanessa walked forward and spoke to Luka directly. “Hey, big guy.” She waved in front of him, trying to shift his focus off Alice. “Do you know how to get out of here?”

Luka didn’t so much as glance at the gorgeous woman addressing him. His gaze stayed solidly on Alice, and she felt herself wilt under his intense stare.

“Is there something wrong with—Hey!” Vanessa yelled as Luka suddenly hoisted Alice over his shoulder.

Before Alice had regained a breath to argue, Luka was running back toward the base of the mountain he’d emerged from. He was so fast that the few women who tried to chase after them fell behind almost immediately.

After a few minutes of pounding on his back and demanding to be returned to the group, Luka stopped.

Rather than set her down quickly, he angled her so that she slid down his front, rubbing every inch of him as she went until she was on her feet, still firmly tucked against his body.

Oh, shit.

Her knees wobbled. Luka was free, he thought she was his mate, and the drugs must still be in his system, because she could feel his massive erection prodding her stomach.

She pushed away from him, glancing around. Behind her, a smooth rock wall stretched up, forming the base of the mountain. A trickle of water wound its way down the surface of the rock and pooled in a glittering pond to her left.

Luka moved toward her again, a purr starting in his chest. When she took another step back, he furrowed his brows in confusion.

Alice felt a moment’s relief. He’d brought her to a romantic spot away from everyone else, and it was clear what he wanted. During all of their other encounters, she’d been the one in charge. Luka had been chained and at her mercy. Now that he was free, she wondered what he’d do. Her heartbeat increased, and her fingers tingled as though electrified. Was it fear or anticipation making her breath hitch?

She allowed her gaze to run down his body. With him standing at his full height before her, she marveled at just how big he was. She took another step back, and this time, instead of looking confused, a seductive, predatory grin spread over his face, sending shivers down her spine.

He hunched slightly, as though preparing to run.

Heat flooded her core at the thought of him chasing her down, but she tried to ignore it. “Luka, this isn’t a game. Stop, okay?” Her voice was shaky as she continued to back away.

He stalked closer. His nostrils flared, and a small growl escaped him. Her breasts felt heavy and sensitive under her thin T-shirt.

She thought back to Helas’ earlier comment about scenting her fear. Luka had smelled her before, and she realized he could probably scent more than just her fear.

Alice threw her hands up in the air. “I know what you smell, but I can’t control that, dammit!”

For weeks she’d craved Luka’s touch. She’d told herself that if circumstances were different, she’d have jumped his bones on day one, but she couldn’t get past his state of mind. She wanted him, badly, but she needed to know that he actually desired her. Not because he was drugged or because of his mating marks, but because of who she was.

She looked around, trying to figure out how to escape, but he’d boxed her in. On one side of her was the curve of the mountain; on the other was the pond.

Maybe if I jump in there, he won’t be able to smell me.

Before she could decide what to do, she felt her back hit the smooth, warm rock face.

Luka’s smile widened, and the sight made her sigh in appreciation. She hadn’t seen his smile before. He’d never had a reason to. But the vision of Luka happy was almost enough to make her stop fighting.

He closed the last few feet between them before she could blink. Instinctively, she put her hands on his chest, intending to push him away.

Luka laid his palms on top of her hands and gripped her wrists, guiding them up to rest on his shoulders. A loud purr rumbled through him, and she found herself frozen in place.

Slowly, he traced his hands down her arms, seeming to savor every inch of her skin.

Her breaths came in short pants. She wanted to pull away, knew she should, but just couldn’t bring herself to do it.

When his hands continued roaming down over her waist, he leaned in and began softly kissing her neck.

Goosebumps broke out over her skin when she felt his tongue glide over her collar bone. “Luka, we…we really… You shouldn’t…” Alice found she had trouble holding on to her thoughts as his hands traveled further down her body.

He grazed her hips, then slid his hands behind her to rest on her ass.

This was going too far. Alice needed to put a stop to it.

Just as she was beginning to pull back, Luka firmly kneaded her ass, shoving her lower body tightly against his. He nipped at her neck with his vibrating mouth, and Alice’s eyes slid shut. She let out a wanton moan, feeling heat pool between her thighs.

Luka gripped her ass, lifting her until she wrapped her legs around his waist. She leaned forward for a kiss, but he jerked away.

Raising a hand to her chin, he moved her face until she was looking directly into his eyes. He groaned and rocked his hips against her core, tearing a moan from her throat.

His wrist caught her eye before he lowered his hand. Angry red burns and charred skin circled the flesh where his shackles had been. His light, shining marks had turned black near his wrist and faded to gray then back to white as they traveled up his muscular forearm. Seeing his injuries reminded her of what they’d just escaped and stirred her from the aroused fog she was in.

“Luka, I don’t want it to be like this.” She pushed away from him again, squirming to be let down.

At first, he made no move to drop her, but then his whole body stiffened, and he set her on her feet. Turning away, he snarled viciously.

Alice craned her neck to see what had upset him and shrieked to find a large man pointing what looked like a gun at Luka.

Luka advanced, running toward the man at full speed. The click of a trigger was followed by the faint sound of a whizzing object.

Alice looked on in horror as Luka slumped to the ground, mere feet from his attacker.

When he was sure Luka was no longer moving, the man straightened, lowering his weapon. “Sorry about that. Didn’t mean to scare you,” he said with a lopsided grin. “The females down the hill told me Luka had been drugged, and he carried you off, so I thought he may need to be sedated.”

Alice couldn’t seem to find her words. Why was this man here? Was he going to drag her back to the underground facility?

“I can see you’re starting to panic,” he said, holding up his hands. “But I’m part of the rescue team. I’m Izzo.” He gave a small kick to Luka’s shin. “And this idiot is my brother.”


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