RENEWED – BOOK FOUR
When two former enemies fall in love, family secrets threaten to destroy their fragile union and everything they hold dear.
With their extreme ideas about traditional Ojibway life, the radical Kabatay clan have made enemies in their fight to rid the reserve of Western culture and its religion. Disowned by her family for daring to love the church deacon’s eldest son, Jude, Raven Kabatay longs to put an end to the feud started by her mother, brother, and sisters against the Matawapits…people she’s come to think of as her own since Jude changed her life.
Jude Matawapit suffered a humiliating divorce after his wife left him for another man, but with Raven, he’s created a beautiful, new sanctuary after losing his previous one, and his new haven is everything he’s ever wanted for himself and his children. Only two things could destroy his pristine bliss: the secret he holds close to his chest, and the vengeance Raven’s family wants to exact on the Matawapits. A secret and vengeance that could cost the unlikely lovers their hard-won, much longed for happily ever after.
Raven turned. “I can’t believe your dad did that to his own son.”
Jude sighed. “Family can have strong feelings about who we associate with, especially people we don’t approve of. But Dad understood he was wrong. If Emery was truly meant to be a priest, I’d be going to his ordination next month. I’m not.”
“Would it have been weird?” Raven dug her vape from her purse.
“Nope. I thought good and hard about the permanent diaconate at one point. I have no regrets I didn’t even get past the orientation.” Jude chuckled.
“I can’t picture you as a deacon like your dad.” At least the lump had vanished. Again, Jude had worked his magic, dispelling the terrible ache in Raven’s chest.
“Can I?” She held up the vape.
“Go ahead.” Jude cracked her window down one-third of the way. “After what happened, you deserve it. It’s only vapor.”
He released her hand and shifted the gear into drive. “Where to?”
“Anywhere. Far from here.”
“Gotcha.” He drove away from the nursing station.
After a few minutes, they turned off onto the other road. Soon they’d come upon the junction leading to the Matawapits’ house, or they could go straight or hang a right.
“I wanna go to the Treaty Grounds.”
“Sounds good in my book.” He reached over the console and locked their fingers together again, his thumb massaging the back of her hand. “Whatever you need.”
“What I need is to get fucked.” Raven sucked on the vape. The nicotine flavor scooted down her throat.
“Funny.” Jude chuckled.
A deep breath left Raven’s lungs. “I’m serious.”
“Uh…really?” Jude glanced at her and back to the road.
“Yeah. Why?” She peered at him.
“It’s just— honestly?”
He cleared his throat. “I assumed most women wanna be held during a…tough time.”
“Remember, I’m nothing like your ex-wife.” Having Jude deep inside her would ease away the queasiness in Raven’s stomach, an off-and-on queasiness after meeting Jude and knowing sooner or later she’d have to choose him or her family.
“You sure aren’t.” Jude expelled a low whistle. “Nothing like her at all.”
Raven let go of his hand. She stuck the vape in the cupholder and worked off the leather jacket Jude had bought during their trip to Thunder Bay. To save time so they could get busy right away, she discarded her mukluks. She might as well remove her clothes, too.
When she unbuttoned her cardigan, Jude sputtered. “Whoa, what’re you doing?”
“Uh, yeah, I see that.” He grinned wolfishly. “I…I feel guilty being turned on when you’re feeling bad.”
“I told you. I’m not like other women. They want cuddles? I want dick. Your dick.” Raven shucked the cardigan. She unfastened her bra.
“My dick belongs to you.”
The headlights bounced off the skeleton remains of sleeping underbrush soon to wake with the coming spring.
Raven wiggled from her leggings. She folded them. All she had left was her panties.
“I gotta admit, I like this way of making you feel better during a tough time.” Jude’s reply was deeper than his normal authoritative tone, slightly dewy when he grew horny.
He pulled up at the Treaty Grounds. Snow still blanketed the grass area leading to the bleachers and arbor. He turned, smiling.