Moon Grieved (Mirror Lake Wolves Book 5)

By: Jennifer Snyder
Mirror Lake Wolves - Book Five



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Prologue





Another scream echoed through the building. It was less shrill, less sharp than before. Whoever had screamed was growing weaker by the second.

I blew out my candles without making a wish and raced to the door behind everyone else. My feet faltered when I saw who had screamed. A girl. Dressed in a white nightgown. She stumbled toward us. Her long black hair fell to her waist in a disheveled mess. Mascara was smudged beneath her eyes, and her ashen skin appeared slick with sweat. Her plump lips formed the shape of an O as though she were struggling to scream but unable to make a sound.

My heart hammered hard and fast inside my chest, not because of her presence or the eeriness emanating from her looks, but because of the blood soaking the neckline of her nightgown.

I didn’t have to step closer to her to know I’d find two puncture marks on her throat. I also didn’t have to guess any longer if the Midnight Reaper would make his way to Mirror Lake.

Standing there I already knew the answer to both questions, and it was enough to send my mind racing as fast as my heart. The Midnight Reaper was here, and this was one of his victims.

Happy freaking birthday to me.





1





My alarm sounded, startling me awake. I reached out from underneath my blankets to pound the top of it and stop the incessant beeping.

It was early. Too early.

“It can’t be morning yet,” Eli grumbled from beside me. “What time did you set that thing for?”

“Six.” I yawned.

“Six? Why are you getting up so damn early?”

I sat up in bed and smoothed my fingers through my tangled hair. “I switched shifts with Pamela. Remember? One of her kids had something at school she needed to be there for this morning.” Another yawn pushed its way from me. God, why had I agreed to work her shift at Rosemary’s? Getting up this early was torture. How did she do this every day? “I’ll be back on the dinner shift after this. It’s only one morning. ” My last words were said more for my benefit than Eli’s. No part of me enjoyed getting up before the sun.

Eli’s arm snaked out to wrap around my waist. “You mean we won’t be able to cuddle before you go in today?”

“Nope.” I attempted to peel out of his grasp, but he’d latched on tight.

I had thirty minutes to get to work; I didn’t have the time to cuddle with Eli the way he wanted.

“Aw, man. Do we at least get to eat breakfast together?” Eli asked as he struggled to maintain his grip on me.

“Not this morning.” When I pried his final finger off my hip, he reached out for me again. I laughed. Mornings with him would never grow old. “I have to go. Seriously. You’re going to make me late. I need to shower, or else I’m never going to wake up.”

“Want some company?”

Temptation tingled through me, but I knew the wise answer to his question, even if my body wanted to say another. “Not a good idea,” I said as I slipped out of bed.

“Wrong. It’s a great idea.”

I glanced at him. Opting to humor him a little, I asked, “Why is that?”

“It saves water, which means we’re saving the planet one shower together at a time,” he said. A sexy smirk twisted across his face.

“Still not a good idea.”

“Give me one good reason.” His smirk grew.

“Because you have ways of distracting me, ways that make time cease to exist.”

“You say that like it’s a bad thing.” His tone implied he was pleased with himself.

“When I have to get to work, it is. Leon already doesn’t care for me. I don’t need to give him another reason.”

I had no idea why the cook hated me so much, but he’d made it clear I was by no means his favorite person.

“How could anyone not like you?” he asked as his eyes skimmed my barely clothed body. “You’re smart, sexy, and sassy.”

I rolled my eyes, knowing what he was trying to pull. It wasn’t going to work.

“Why don’t you ask him?” I crossed to our dresser and gathered my uniform.

Leon was human. I could sense it. I could also sense he knew nothing of the supernatural world. He was a grouchy hick. One who seemed to loathe any generation younger than his.

I didn’t let it bother me much because I needed this job.

Hell, I wanted this job. I’d never been allowed to work a real job before. It was only because I’d imprinted with Eli that I was allowed to. Gran wouldn’t have approved of me working a part-time job while attending college.

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