Riot (Scarred Souls Series #4)

Riot (Scarred Souls Series #4)

by Tillie Cole
Riot (Scarred Souls Series #4)

Riot (Scarred Souls Series #4)

by Tillie Cole

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Overview

BRUTAL. INTENSE. PASSIONATE. THE WORLD OF THE SCARRED SOULS.

They call me 901. I am a monster, a killer, a champion. In the blood pit I am a god. I have no name, no family, and no identity. When master says fight, I fight…until I am the only one left standing. I have one goal, to fight so well that I am freed. I don’t need friends, I don’t need women. They are weaknesses. I am strong.

Until I see her. She is gorgeous and kind and off-limits to me. She was stolen as a child to be the worst type of slave and now master wants her. What he wants, he gets. With a smile, she melts my brutal heart. I have never wanted anything more.

I need to make a choice. Freedom or Love. I cannot choose wrong.


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250086273
Publisher: St. Martin's Publishing Group
Publication date: 03/07/2017
Series: Scarred Souls Series , #4
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: eBook
Pages: 350
Sales rank: 231,177
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

After graduating from Newcastle University, TILLIE COLE followed her Professional Rugby player husband around the world, becoming a teacher in between and teaching High School students Social Studies for seven years. Tillie has now settled in Calgary, Canada, where she is finally able to sit down and write. She writes Contemporary Romance, Dark Romance, Young Adult and New Adult novels and happily shares her love of alpha-male leading men and strong female characters with her readers. Her books include Raze, Reap, and Ravage.
Tillie Cole hails from a small town in the North-East of England. She grew up on a farm with her English mother, Scottish father and older sister and a multitude of rescue animals. As soon as she could, Tillie left her rural roots for the bright lights of the big city. After graduating from Newcastle University, Tillie followed her Professional Rugby player husband around the world for a decade, becoming a teacher in between and thoroughly enjoyed teaching High School students Social Studies for seven years. Tillie has now settled in Calgary, Canada, where she is finally able to sit down and write, throwing herself into fantasy worlds and the fabulous minds of her characters. Tillie writes Contemporary Romance, Dark Romance, Young Adult and New Adult novels and happily shares her love of alpha-male leading men and strong female characters with her readers. When she is not writing, Tillie enjoys dancing, singing, reading, horse riding, listening to music or spending time with friends and family. Her books include Raze, Reap, and Ravage.

Read an Excerpt

Riot


By Tillie Cole

St. Martin's Press

Copyright © 2017 Tillie Cole
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-250-08628-0



CHAPTER 1

152


The Blood Pit Georgia Unknown Location

A warm breeze rippled over my skin, rousing me from sleep. My eyes were leaden as I tried to blink them open. When I finally succeeded, my vision was blurred. I tried to lift my head, but it ached, and pain pulsed down my spine.

A small cry left my lips as I tried to lift my arms and legs. They were racked by aches and featured the sensation of being pricked with a thousand needles. My mouth was dry. My eyes finally cleared enough to stare at the stone ceiling above me. The stone was a dull gray. Yet, in contrast to my surroundings, I lay on something soft and comfortable, my head sinking into what felt like the softest of down covered in silk.

My eyebrows pulled together in confusion. Managing to move my stiff fingers, I ran them along the soft fabric beneath me. Taking a deep breath, I held it in and forced myself to turn onto my side. I stifled a pained moan that was about to slip through my lips. I panted with exertion.

I squeezed my eyes shut. When the pain had subsided, I opened my eyes and stared at what was before me. I was in a ... bed? A real bed. A large, soft bed. My head was thick with confusion. My heart raced in panic at being here. I had never earned the privilege of a bed.

This time I ignored the pain and shuffled my head higher on the luxurious pillow until the room loomed into view. It was large and decorated beautifully. White drapery hung from the ceiling, tenting the room. There were several carpets of the richest reds and what appeared to be old brown furniture, perfectly situated around the outskirts.

I tried to think of where I could be, but my mind was a thick fog. I shut my eyes, the harsh light forcing me to shy away. Then it dawned: I wasn't used to the light; I was used to darkness. But why? I didn't know! I racked my brain trying to remember. All that emerged were fragmented images: cages, needles, pain, red-hot fire in my veins, the unbearable need for it to be extinguished. Then darker visions followed: visions of males dressed in heavy suits of black, a house filled with children, those children being taken away. Ripped from their beds.

My hands began to shake, fingers curling into weak fists. Wraiths. Night Wraiths, my mind whispered as the words moved on.

Then a featureless face came forth. A brutally scarred, featureless face. The face of a monster, yet as scary as this huge muscled, scarred monster was, I felt no fear. In fact, it was the opposite — I felt safe. On seeing this face, warmth cocooned me. My hands stopped trembling. But the face remained. It gave way to a deep, raw voice assuring me that he would save me. At any cost. That he would come for me, wherever I was. That we'd once again be free.

I felt the soft, wet touch of a teardrop on my hand. Only then did I realize I was crying. My eyebrows furrowed, wondering why I was crying. Once again I racked my brain, trying in earnest to remember why this man was so important to me. I teetered on the very edge of this discovery, until the door to my right opened. I froze, as a young woman slowly entered the room. My eyes were wide and my breathing labored as I inspected her. She was small, dressed in a long, ill-fitted gray dress. She walked with a slight limp. When her head finally turned in my direction, I gasped audibly. The right side of her face was disfigured. No hair grew on that side of her head. The young female's dark features were marred by thick, ugly scars.

On her back, I noticed the unique identity tattoo that betrayed her status: a chiri. One of the "plagues." The lowest type of slave in the Blood Pit. Their tattoos read 000, denoting that they had no names. They were the shades of our world, the bit players who were so lowly they were not even worthy of a personal ID. I frowned at how I knew all of this information.

The Blood Pit ... My mind raced with the realization of where I was. The place I feared most. I was in the Blood Pit. But how ... where ... why ...?

As if feeling my shocked stare, the chiri's dark eyes met my own. She stilled, then quickly dropped her head. A lump clogged my throat. She looked no older than a teenager. Maybe fifteen or sixteen?

The chiri turned to scurry to the other side of the large room, but I managed to call out, "No, please don't." I swallowed hard, feeling as if a million shards of glass were massaging my throat.

I coughed to rid myself of the unpleasant sensation. As I did, the chiri rocked on her feet with indecision. Finally, her shoulders slumped and she dropped the linens she was holding in her hands and rushed to my bedside. I watched her as she poured water from the jug beside me into a glass. Without lifting her downcast eyes, she handed me the glass. I tried to lift my hand to take the drink, but the pain of moving even a muscle was too great. Tears welled in my eyes. The frustration of my confusing predicament too much to take.

As a teardrop fell to the pillow beneath me, the edge of the glass was suddenly placed at my lips. When I blinked back the tears blurring my vision, the chiri was gesturing for me to drink. As soon as the cool liquid hit my tongue, I closed my eyes. I drank and I drank until I had emptied the glass. The chiri refilled the glass and I drank that, too.

When she went to fill a third, I whispered, "No, that's enough. Thank you."

The young female kept her head down and went to walk away. Before she could, I begged, "No, please stay. I ..." I shook my head, wincing at the ache it brought. Pushing the pain aside, I asked, "Where am I? Why am I in such a room? I'm so confused."

The chiri did as commanded, and without meeting my eyes, she replied, "You are in the High Mona suite, miss. Master commanded it."

In a split second of clarity, I remembered what I was. I was a mona. A slave used for her body, to give males pleasure whenever they wished.

Ice replaced the warm blood running through my veins. Shivers broke out along my skin and traveled down my spine.

High Mona?

Master?

Suite?

Master Arziani. That name sent a rapid shock to my heart, its beat increasing in speed. I wasn't sure why this Master scared me so, but again, I trusted my instincts, which told me to fear him greatly.

Dragging in a much needed breath, I asked, "I'm in the Blood Pit?" The question left my mouth, words laced with the confusion that still smogged my mind.

"Yes, miss. You were brought back six weeks ago. You have been gone awhile."

Shock rippled through my body. "Six weeks? Brought back?" I questioned. The chiri nodded once in response. I racked my brain trying to remember anything about where I had been, any morsel of memory from the past six weeks, but there was nothing. Panic flooded my senses.

"I don't remember," I said hoarsely. "I don't remember anything." The blurred scarred face of the male flickered through my mind yet again. I tried to hold on to the image of his face. I remembered that he had blue eyes. Somehow familiar blue eyes. But before I could understand why, he had disappeared, sucked back into whichever black hole was stealing all conscious thought.

My chest constricted and the ability to breathe was taken from me. My dry lips parted as I fought for air. Despite the pain, my hand moved to my chest and gripped over my heart. Panic surged through me and my feet began to kick. But my traitorous body wouldn't move. The aches and pains held it down. A whimper escaped from my lips. Suddenly, two hands gripped my arms and held me in place.

Frantically, I looked up. The chiri had leaned over the bed and was trying to keep me calm. "I ... can't ... breathe ..." I forced out. The chiri finally met my gaze. Her eyes were dark and large. She would have been pretty, I thought, if it had not been for the ravaged side of her face.

"You're panicking," she said softly. "It's the drugs. You have been weaned off one and placed on another, a lower, less intense dosage. It's why you're in pain. It's why you're struggling to remember anything. Your brain needs time to adjust."

Reaching out, I gripped the chiri's arms and followed the rhythm of her breathing. She inhaled slowly, as I attempted to fall into step with her calm rhythmical breathing. My heart had been beating so fast I was sure it would burst from my chest. But after minutes of controlled breathing, it regained its normal beat. I could once again breathe, my pulse slowed to a steady beat.

Yet I didn't let go of the chiri's arms. Seeing I was calm, the chiri lowered her head. As she did, I studied her up close. My heart dropped. The disfigurement, what appeared to be a burn mark, was severe. Her hair was patchy, and her skin was red over her right cheek, neck, and ear. A wave of sorrow washed over me.

What had she been subjected to? How was this done? But worse, why was this considered normal? Why did seeing someone so brutally scarred not shock me?

Then I thought back to her words, as anxiety once again tried to hold me in its clutches. Drugs? The drugs? Opening my mouth, I whispered, "Drugs? You said ... drugs?"

After a brief pause, the chiri replied, "Yes, miss."

"Please," I asked. "Explain. I ... I find myself confused. My mind is a jumble of thoughts. I can't pin anything down."

The chiri paled. She shook her head. "I am not authorized to speak of such things. I've been sent to care for you, nothing more."

"Please," I begged. "Why am I here? How am I here? I need something to make sense." My head pounded as I grew silent.

It was several seconds before the chiri replied. "You were with Mistress Arziani for a long time. You were not in the Blood Pit. But Master called you back. So you returned. That's as much as I know."

I closed my eyes, trying to remember something, anything, but nothing was there. "I don't remember," I whispered.

"The drugs," the chiri repeated. Opening my eyes, I waited for her to explain. After rolling her lips together nervously, she said, "You were on the monebi drug. You have been subjected to it for years. When Master called you home, he ordered you be taken off it and instead put onto the High Mona formula."

"Why?"

"I do not know why, miss. I was simply brought in as your chiri. I have been assigned to your care while you are High Mona. Every High Mona is assisted. It's part of your privileges."

A million questions clogged my fuzzy mind, but I picked out one to ask. "High Mona?" I shook my head slightly. "Can you explain? I don't understand? What is a High Mona?"

The chiri looked up and with a deep breath stated, "Miss, you are Master's new personal consort. You have been elevated to be his. And only his. You are no longer the property of other males, as you were before."

All of the blood drained from my face as her words reached my ears. Releasing her arms, I stared down at my hands and saw them shaking. I searched my mind for why the news that I was Master's High Mona was a bad thing, but I couldn't remember. It was as though a high wall shielded my past from my mind's eye. Obscuring the answers to the many questions I had.

"Why am I shaking?" I asked nervously. "Why does this cause me to feel fear?" I clenched my hands together into fists, gritting my teeth through the aching pain. My eyes then scanned the room, at the luxury and the opulence. Nothing looked familiar. Instinctively, I just knew that I did not belong.

As that thought passed through my mind, another took its place. I felt the soft bed beneath me, breathed in the clean fragrant air, and asked, "If I am the new High Mona, what happened to the last?" The air seemed to fill with tension. As I glanced up to the chiri, I pushed, "Tell me."

"She was killed, miss."

My heart dropped. "How?"

"I do not know, miss. She was disobedient. I don't know how or why, but Master put her to death. Publicly. In the pit."

"The pit?"

"The pit is where Master's fighters have their matches, miss."

Lifting my hand to my head, I gripped my hair. "I don't remember anything. Yet everything seems so familiar, if that makes any sense at all. It's like I hold the answers to all of my questions, but they are lost somewhere in my mind and I can't access them."

"You will remember them again, someday," the chiri informed. "The new High Mona drug you have been put on brings with it a clarity you were missing on the Type B drug. It takes awhile, but hopefully sooner rather than later you will remember things that seem out of reach now. The weaker drug is a better drug to be on, miss. Believe me. It shields you from pregnancy, yet it still gives you the need to be taken for Master's benefit. Though it will not hurt you and drive you insane like before. Master likes his High Monas to be aware of his touch. He likes you to be aware of him at all times. He wants you to feel every single second of being with him. He wants you to remember exactly who you are servicing."

"How do you know this?" I asked.

The chiri paused nervously, then said, "It is common knowledge among the slaves, miss. Master does not hide much."

Freeing my hair from my hands, I let them drop as fear began climbing back up my spine. Fear of being the solo consort to Master. A male I had no conscious memory of, but a male that my mind told me I already knew. Well.

Silence filled the room, then I asked, "Why me? Why have I been chosen? Has Master ... taken me before? I feel like he may have. I feel like he has touched me before now."

The chiri's shoulders stiffened, but she eventually whispered, "Yes, miss. He was the only male servicing you here in the first few weeks when the monebi drug still held you in its grasp. Since your initial need for his release calmed, he has been eagerly waiting for you to wake fully, with a clear mind." Her eyes flitted to mine, then quickly looked away.

"What?" I asked with dread. The chiri didn't add anything, so I shook her arm and pushed harder, "What? Tell me."

"You have caught his eye, miss. More than I've seen before. He has been visiting you every day, waiting for you to open your eyes. That is ... that is not normal for him. He is Master, he can have anyone he desires, but he is solely focused on you."

"He is?" I asked, swallowing down my apprehension.

"Yes, miss. He will be very happy you're awake. He's been getting agitated. He hasn't even taken another mona. He wants only you."

Feeling my body aching, I slumped back against the pillows. The chiri hovered by, building up the courage to continue. "Miss, I've worked for the monebi all my life. Though you don't remember what you have been through yet, you should eventually. If you remember, you will be thankful that you have been elevated to this new status." She glanced down, then sighed. "The monebi life is one of violence and servitude. We are all owned and controlled by Master, but even though I am the lowest of the low, I would willingly take my chiri status over being a mona ... the things they make you do." She swallowed, cheeks flushing with red, and quickly added, "If you submit and obey every command asked of you by Master, you will find yourself much better off."

The chiri then seized the opportunity to rush from the bed and commence her duties. I watched as she efficiently gathered fresh bed linens and put them in a dresser. Then she moved to a large bathtub and began filling it with water. She added some kind of liquid to the water, and the room quickly filled with the most beautiful perfumed scent.

I closed my eyes as the aroma washed over me. When I opened my eyes, the chiri was walking to the side of the room with a red dress in her hands. She laid it out on a table, then moved back toward the tub. She turned off the faucet and walked my way.

When she stood at the side of my bed, she said, "Miss, I have orders to bathe you. I was instructed by Master that the moment you wake I am to cleanse you, dress you and prepare you, then inform him."

Panic blossomed inside me again, but I held it back. I knew there was no way out of this. Something, some unknown voice inside my head, told me that I could not fight this fate, whatever it was. Pushing myself to sit up, I accepted the chiri's offer of help to walk. I leaned heavily on her until I reached the tub. The chiri undressed me and helped me slip into the hot water.

As my body was enveloped in warmth, I sighed as my muscles relaxed, my pain evaporating with the rising steam. I closed my eyes, my eyelids pulled down by tiredness. As I did, the image of a dark-haired female towering over me came to mind. The vision was blurred, but I could see her ordering a male to take me as I writhed in pain on the floor. In the vision, I also saw the scarred male from my previous memory being restrained in the corner of a small room, a metal collar tightly fastened around his thick neck. And he was fighting to be free while I was on the hard floor, a deep, unbearable pain tearing me apart from inside. He was being forced to watch me being ravaged. And at the sight, his huge, built body radiated rage.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Riot by Tillie Cole. Copyright © 2017 Tillie Cole. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Contents

Title Page,
Copyright Notice,
Dedication,
Acknowledgments,
Prologue: 901,
1: 152,
2: 152,
3: LUKA,
4: 901,
5: 152,
6: 901,
7: 152,
8: LUKA,
9: 901,
10: 152,
11: LUKA,
12: 901,
13: 152,
14: ILYA,
15: LUKA,
16: INESSA,
Epilogue: ILYA,
Also by Tillie Cole,
About the Author,
Copyright,

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