Read Magpie Online

Authors: Kim Dare

Tags: #Gay & Lesbian





An Avian Shifters Story

By Kim Dare

Resplendence Publishing, LLC


Copyright © 2012 Kim Dare
Edited by Christine Allen-Riley and Jason Huffman
Cover art by Les Byerley,


Published by Resplendence Publishing, LLC
2665 N Atlantic Avenue, #349
Daytona Beach, FL 32118


Electronic format ISBN: 978-1-60735-589-2


Warning: All rights reserved. The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine of $250,000.


Electronic Release: October 2012


This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and occurrences are a product of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, places or occurrences, is purely coincidental.






To everyone who encouraged me to write another avian shifters book.
I really hope you like the way it turned out.







Chapter One


“They’ve cornered the little bastard in the back room.”

Everet didn’t really need the bouncer’s help to work that out. The sound of fists slamming into flesh traveled very well through the otherwise silent nightclub, and Everet had no doubt who played the part of the punching bag tonight.

With the establishment already closed, there were no dancers or drinkers to get in Everet’s way as he strode quickly toward the door the bouncer had pointed out. It was set at the end of a long, curved bar. On the other side of the sleek metallic counter, a man stopped restocking with bottles of cheap vodka and tracked Everet’s progress. If human senses were able to pick up the sounds of the beating taking place on the other side of the door, the bartender betrayed no sign of it.

The hairs of the back of Everet’s neck prickled as he felt the guy run an assessing eye over him. He tensed, automatically working out if the man should be considered a threat. It was the kind of club where bartenders probably doubled up as dumb muscle when required, and the man was as big as a bloody albatross.

Everet’s brain whirled. His survival instincts screamed at him to get out of there, but his footsteps never faltered. He reached the door and quickly pushed it open, knowing that any sign of weakness or hesitation might sign two death warrants.

In a split second, Everet took in every detail of the scene before him.

Four humans. One avian.

Four attackers. One poor sod curled up on the floor taking a pounding from them all.

“That’s enough,” Everet’s words cut cleanly through the sound of a human’s boot meeting the prone avian’s ribs.

Just as he expected, they were all shocked enough to temporarily stop what they were doing. Four faces turned to toward him, the boy on the floor momentarily forgotten. They had the look of men who did as they were told—who were used to delivering a beating in the dispassionate manner of those who simply had a job to do.

Everet’s eyes narrowed. He looked past the guys who’d been throwing their fists around. His suspicions proved correct. There was one more human in the room—a man who sat slightly away from the action; far enough to make sure he wouldn’t get any nasty blood stains on his expensive suit, but still close enough to ensure he’d see every blow land.

He appeared to be in his late forties or maybe his early fifties. He flicked ash off the end of his cigarette as he studied Everet in return. It didn’t take a huge leap to place him as Crenshaw, the owner of the club, the man who’d demanded someone come there and retrieve an avian who’d disgraced his kind.

“I assume you’re from the
?” Crenshaw bit out.


Silence descended upon the room, demanding to be filled. Everet made no attempt to add anything to his answer. He already knew what kind of human he was dealing with. He wasn’t worth wasting words on.

“You’re not the same class of shifter as that thing was.”

Crenshaw didn’t glance toward the avian on the floor, neither did Everet. The hush was good for something. Everet could just about make out the sound of the boy’s labored breathing. He’d made it there in time. It wasn’t appropriate to apply the past tense to the shifter’s life, not yet.

Crenshaw’s lips thinned when Everet failed to offer him any information.

The bodyguards, or bouncers, or whatever the hell they were, seemed to be well-tuned to their employer’s moods. Each one shifted their stance and figuratively rolled up their sleeves, ready to make Everet their target the moment the order hit the air.

Four in here, plus one guy on the door. Add in the one behind the bar. And there was no way Everet could guess how many other men were in the building. They were probably all humans. Still, at least six guys against one shifted. If nothing else, they’d be able to make Everet hurt.

“Species?” Crenshaw snapped.


A slight moan from the huddled figure in the middle of the room pulled everyone’s attention toward it. Everet could only risk being distracted for the briefest moment, but that was more than enough time for him to take in the pair of tiny silver shorts the boy wore. The rest of him was bare—all the better to display his bruises.

A lot of his injuries had obviously been inflicted long before the present beating began. Everet’s hand ached to form a fist at his side, but he pushed the instinct away. Six against one, and the boy might get hurt even further. That was unacceptable.

“Tell me, raven, is your breed as stupid as his?” More ash landed on the floor at Crenshaw’s feet.

“Ravens aren’t known for being fools,” Everet said, his voice completely emotionless. That much was true. For one thing, he was easily smart enough to know when to act like the same kind of dumb muscle Crenshaw employed. “My orders said you want to be rid of him as soon as possible.”

“Yes.” Crenshaw took a deep pull on his cigarette, making the tip glow brightly in the gloomy room. “I wonder, how do you bird-boys punish slutty little thieves?”

Everet didn’t even blink. “Decisions like that would be made by avians far higher up the pecking order than—”

“Guess!” Crenshaw ordered. “I want to know what will happen to him.” He leaned forward in his chair as he spoke.

Everet quickly scanned the other men in the room as he considered his options. They stood around like men who were used to standing around waiting for orders rather than thoughts to arrive. They didn’t look like the type to question the order to beat the hell out of anyone, but at the same time, Everet doubted they’d actually do it for fun.

Crenshaw however…yes, Everet saw the gleam in his eye. He was exactly the kind of man who wouldn’t see the fun in hurting anyone masochistic enough to enjoy it. He’d do anything it took to make a man writhe in agony. Seeing genuine fear on his victim’s face would be like an expert blowjob to him.

“He’ll be punished for bringing avians as a whole into disrepute,” Everet said. “It’s a matter that every nest takes very seriously.”


Everet swallowed down a bitter taste that filled the back of his mouth and folded his arms across his chest. He’d be damned if he’d feed the bastard’s fantasies. “There is no set punishment. Species is taken into account.”


“All species have their talents and their weaknesses,” Everet said, speaking on something close to automatic pilot as he weighed his chances of either of them getting out of there alive. “Magpies have always loved anything that glitters and sparkles. Did what he stole from you fit that description?”

Crenshaw paused for a moment, obviously debating if he should tell the truth or lie just to make things worse for the boy.

Everet didn’t give him the chance to speak either way. He had no interest in an unreliable witness. “The elders will decide what’s to be done with him,” he said again.

Crenshaw slumped back in his chair. Everet held his gaze for what felt like several minutes. Finally, the other man turned away. He waved a hand toward the curled up figure in the center of the room as he apparently realized he wouldn’t get anything interesting out of Everet.

Crenshaw already appeared bored. The gesture seemed dismissive. Everet still held his breath, tensed and ready for anything.

Suddenly, Crenshaw jerked to his feet. “He’s all yours. Get rid of him however you see fit.”

Two of the guys who’d been delivering the beating filed out of the room ahead of Crenshaw, the other two followed in his wake. Bodyguards rather than bouncers then, not that it mattered now.

Everet watched them all walk past. He listened to their footsteps fade away. Finally, he sensed that he and his charge were alone in that part of that building.

The boy lay curled into a tight fetal position. He hadn’t moved in several minutes. Everet approached, making sure his footsteps were loud enough to alert the younger man to his presence. He dropped to one knee alongside him.

“They’ve all gone. It’s just you and me.”

No response. If it weren’t for the shallow, shaky breaths the boy might have succeeded in playing dead.

“Uncurl yourself,” Everet ordered. “I need to check your injuries.”

While he waited for the boy to obey, Everet assessed what he could from his current angle. There were scars on the magpie’s back, some looked like they had been made by a whip, others were small and round—the same size and shape as the tip of Crenshaw’s cigarette.

Everet ground his teeth together, but he kept his thoughts on that to himself. Bruises seemed to cover almost every inch of the other man’s body, but in truth it was hard to tell where the bruises ended and the dirt began. The floor hadn’t been cleaned in a long time. There was now a circle of less grubby tiles where the magpie had rolled around trying to evade his attackers.

The boy remained curled into a ball showing no sign of having heard Everet.

Everet resisted the temptation to look over his shoulder toward the door, or point out that the longer they stayed where they were the more likely it was someone would join them. He wanted the boy cooperative, not more scared than ever.

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