Updated: Jan 21
by Cecy Robson
Published by Cecy Robson LLC
Prequel to The Weird Girls Series
Discover Cecy Robson’s sensational Weird Girls series for the first time — or go back to the beginning ...
The rest of the werewolf pack
might consider Aric Connor to be omniscient and destined to save the world when evil returns to claim it. But for the most part, fifteen-year-old Aric ignores the confirmations of his powers, taking everything in stride until he meets her. Celia Wird wasn’t supposed to awaken naked in the mountains of Colorado, not when she was just stalking her prey in a filthy alley several states away. She especially wasn’t supposed to meet Aric, the handsome werewolf who comes to her aid. As a supernatural tasked with protecting the earth, Aric sympathizes with Celia’s dangerous situation. He’s also struck by her beauty and kindness. Yet, as much as Aric welcomes Celia, her arrival isn’t a peaceful one. Dark forces stir in Celia’s presence, resolute on killing her. Aric and his inner beast are adamant about keeping Celia safe and with them. But there's a time and a place for love, and Aric and Celia might not survive long enough to find it.
RATED: 14+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Spoilers ahead lovelies. I can't help it. It was so great I need to talk about it.
Gone Hunting is a prequel to the Weird Girls Series, and it written from Aric's point-of-view. It goes back in time to when he and his future warriors, Gemini, Koda, and Liam, were all teenagers, living a care-free life, until Aric stumbles upon a scared girl in the woods - Celia. Celia's uniqueness isn't the only thing that interests him; he is drawn to her for reasons he can't explain. With Celia's presence, it comes with a cost though.
I left this prequel to the end (well, the end of the books already released). I LOVED it! I love the Weird Girls series, but this prequel is a shining gem among the books. For a few reasons. The timeline brings our main characters back in time to the age of fifteen. We get a better understanding of the relationship between Aric and his best friends/warriors, and learn things about them we didn't otherwise know (and we get Liam again!). We get to meet Aric's father, and get a glimpse at a very happy childhood. We get a trip through memory lane with Celia, and learn what she did to those who murdered her parents, and what is costs her. We get answers to what happened to their cousin, who helps the Wird sisters in another prequel. And we get Aric's point-of-view of his connection with Celia. In the end, we get a better understanding that with magic their is a balance, and sacrifices must be made to achieve that.
I'm going to jump right into Aric and Celia's connection with one another, and his Dad's choice in the end. First of all, I loved Aric and Celia's attraction to one another as teenagers. There was an innocence to their love, and it called back those memories of first loves. Aric, admitting he was never interested in females before Celia, and his awkwardness around her was endearing. Everything between them was sweet. Reading the main books in the series first, I knew who they were to each other, but having it confirmed by his parents was a rather powerful moment. As soon as his parents realized their son had found his mate (despite both being too young), they adopted her into their family, and were willing to take in her sisters and foster mother. Reading the original books first though, I knew it wouldn't happen. When Aric and Celia meet in Sealed With A Curse, they didn't know each other. So I knew that the witches in this book would play a part and make them forget each other. It was heartbreaking in a lot of ways. Celia was only there, because her cousin (from another prequel), knew Celia was in danger from dark witches. She sent Celia to a place where she would always be safe (with her mate, Aric), but it sends her two years in the past, and the dark witches were able to latch on to the spell, and use dark magic any way they could to kill Celia, and in turn, killing everyone who helps her. Darkness knew, even then, that Celia was the key to ending them. While dark magic is literally destroying the area, and killing Aric's best friends, Aric's father makes a deal with Liam's aunt (a very powerful hag), to send Celia back to her time in the future, and to make everyone forget, especially Aric and Celia, as it would kill them to be parted from one another. Aric, pounding on the ward around Celia, and finally getting through to give her one final kiss and promise her he would find her again was bittersweet. They were hurting in that moment, but you are comforted to know they do eventually find one another.
I found it very interesting how Cecy weaved Aric's fathers demise into Celia's story. We know from the original books that he died when Aric was 15, by a witch in Africa during a hunt. We know now, that he knew when he went on that hunt, he wasn't coming back. It was part of the sacrifice he made to save Celia, and make them forget what happened, and send Celia back to her time. Magic needs to be balanced. To make everyone forget, someone must be burdened with the knowledge, and Aric's father took it. Willingly. Not only because he knew Celia was destined to save the world from the darkness, but for Celia, his son's soulmate. So when his family woke up, like the past few days never happened, it was sad. Aric's father knew he was saying goodbye to his son in that moment. Knew that Aric had found his mate, loved her, and was forced to say goodbye. The promise he asked of Aric the last time they saw each other was important. Aric was always pursued by women because of his position and bloodline. It knew there would be temptations Aric would succumb to, but he made Aric promise to not marry anyone who wasn't his mate. It was the last thing he did for his son to ensure his happiness. It tied really well into the series, and for that, I am appreciative.
The added bonus of this story was the warriors: Gemini, Koda, and Liam. Especially Liam, since our sweet and fun-loving wolf dies protecting Celia later in the series. So many books have passed since his death, and I still feel his absense. While he drove the others crazy, they loved him. We learn a bit about Gemini, too. He, being Aric's future second-in-command, and the one who has known Aric the longest, was drawn to Celia, and wanted to protect her as well. While it's clear that part of the reason is that she is the mate of their future Alpha, and therefore feel the need to protect her, I wonder if its also because Celia is related to two of the wolves future mates. We also get a back story on Koda, which was MUCH appreciated by me. As we know now since Taran's story is finished, Shayna's is next. Shayna to me has always been a bit of an unknown to me, and therefore, Koda hasn't been showcased much. Learning that Koda comes from an abusive home tells a lot about Koda's character in the later books, and makes me feel more connected to him now. It makes me look forward to the next book that much more.
In the end, while it is sad that Aric and Celia find one another, only to be torn apart and lose their memories of those moments between them, so many good things happen because of Aric's father's sacrifice, beside the fact that everyone gets to live (except Aric's father). Celia meets Danny, who eventually helps them break the binds of their curse so they can better control, and have full access to their powers. Danny also introduces them to Bren, a lone were, who teaches them about the supernatural world, and ends up becoming a brother of sorts to them. Not to mention, its looking very much like Emme and Bren are mates, so they may never have found one another without the sacrifice. It was a sweet, innocent story, and it enriches Cecy Robson's Weird Girls world that much more.
Top 3 Favorite Moments
1. Aric and Celia waking up in bed together, not knowing how they ended up that way.
2. Aric reliving Celia's hunt of the men who killed her parents.
3. Aric and Celia's first kiss
4. (bonus!) Every moment with Gemini, Koda and Liam, and how they all were crushing on Celia.
5. (bonus!) Aric's parents horrified to walk in on Aric and Celia kissing in bed, but once they realized that Celia was his mate, they automatically made her family.
6. (bonus!) Aric's promise to find Celia again
7. (bonus!) Aric's father carving Aric's and Celia's initials into the same tree his and his mates initials are carved, before heading off on the mission that will end his life.
Where to Buy
Celia: "Oh, my God."
Aric: "What's wrong?"
Celia: "You're naked!"
Aric: "So are you."
Celia: "I'm - put some clothes on!"
Celia: "I told you to put some clothes on."
Aric: "My pack is up there."
Celia: "There're more of you? Naked more of yous?
Celia: "What are you doing?"
Aric: "Trying to see you."
Celia: "I think you've seen enough."
Aric: *laughing* "Come on. This isn't the first time I've seen a naked female."
Celia: "I'll just bet, big boy."
Aric: "What do you mean? My kind and I change all the time in front of each other."
Celia: "Great. Of all the places I could have been zapped to, I get sent to a nudist colony in Colorado."
Celia: "For someone whose idea of a good time is streaking through the woods and scratching behind his ears, you're pretty judgmental."
Aric: "I also have mad tracking skills."
Celia: "Is that so?"
Aric: "I found you, didn't I?"
Celia: "I suppose you did, Aric."
Aric: "Ouch, Celia!"
I hook my arm tighter to pull her closer.
Aric: "Don't be mean. I'm only trying to help."
Our closeness amplifies the warmth between us. I try to fight it, but that fight is brief. Like before, the feel of her consumes me. My body welcomes Celia like an embrace after a long, weary day. It relaxes me, despite how my heartbear races and her presence further rouses my best. I groan, clutching her closer.
Aric: "It's okay. I won't hurt you. I swear it."
Liam: "I don't know, man. I still think we should eat her."
Celia makes a chuffing sounds.
Liam: "What was that?"
Celia does it again. This time louder.
Liam: "Is she laughing at me?"
Aric: "It beats her trying to rip your throat out, like you deserve."
Liam: "Do I have to get dressed? I have to air these parts out every now and then. You hear what I'm saying? Some things need to breathe."
Celia grimaces and turns away, staring out over the valley.
Aric: "Liam, she's a guest. And from what I can tell, she's seen enough of your parts."
Liam: *grinning* "Has she seen enough of yours?"
Heat flushes across my skin. I'm not embarrassed by my body. I'm embarrassed that Celia's embarrassed, if that makes sense.
Aric: "Yes, Liam."
Liam: "Woah. You're really pretty."
Celia: "Um -"
Liam: "I mean hot. Really hot. *he nudges Koda* Hey. Isn't she hot?"
He motions to where I'm standing and not smiling anymore.
Liam: "Oh, sorry. I meant sexy. Is sexy a better word for you Aric?"
Liam: "Celia, I'm never going to know what it's like to give birth. I don't have the parts, you hear what I'm saying? But I gotta tell ya, when your fist came out of the hole in my neck, holding that slimy, pulsating thing in your hand, it was everything I've ever imagined birth to be. You should have slapped that clump and gave it a name."
Celia: "Please stop speaking."
Liam: "Why? I'm just getting to the good part."
I don't know Celia. We only met a few long hours ago. But everything I've seen makes up for it. Celia faced an immense snarling wolf head on, telling him she didn't want to hurt him. She's a young woman who hid in embarrassment, but who took on a creature that weres live in fear of, knowing she couldn't heal if wounded. This female saved my friends, my brothers, ignoring everything it could cost. No. I don't know Celia. But what I do know is enough.
Aric: "We should go to bed."
I don't have to look in the mirror to know my face is fire-engine red.
Aric: "Ah, bed? You know, in my room?"
Her tigress eyes replace her own. That's pretty much when I realize I'm in trouble.
Celia: "I'm not going to bed with you."
Aric: "That's not what I mean. I just want you in my bed."
Celia: "Oh, I bet you do."
And that's when her claws come out.
Aric: "I mean, I want you in bed by yourself. Without me. Do you know what I'm saying?"
Of course not. Celia doesn't speak moron.
Aric: "You can stay in my room is all I meant."
Her nails slowly withdraw.
Celia: "You want me to sleep in your bed?"
Celia: "By myself?"
Clicks tongue while doing a little shooting finger with his fingers.
Aric: "You got it."
I press my forehead against the door, speaking low.
Aric: "Goodnight, Celia."
I don't think she hears me, until her sweet voice whispers against the door.
Celia: "Goodnight, Aric."
Gemini: "We should give Aric and Celia some space. We'll wait for you downstairs."
Koda follows without a word. Liam continues to sit there like he's waiting on the Tooth Fairy.
Liam: "Huh? Okay. I guess I can do that."
Aric: "And shut the door."
He jogs back to the door and shuts it, but not before giving us a big thumbs up. Celia is officially the color of fire.
Celia: "They think we ..."
Aric: "Oh yeah. I'll grab you something from my Mom's closet. She's bigger than you, but a lot smaller than me."
Celia: "Aric? You don't think we ..."
Aric: "Trust me when I say I would have remembered that."
Liam perks up when he sees me, lifting his hand in a high-five.
Liam: "My man."
I smack him upside the head.
Aric: "Not another word, Liam."
Liam: "I say we take her to Mimi."
The wolves and I toss our forks, groaning, Gemini going as far as covering his face.
Celia: "Who's Mimi?"
Liam: "Only the greatest hag you'll ever find."
Koda: "Liam's nutso aunt."
Liam: "She's not nutso. She's just a little eccentric."
Koda: "Eccentric means you act a little funny or maybe dress up in that cosplay crap. Eccentric doesn't mean you blow up anyone stupid enough to knock on your door."
Liam: "That was just the one time. And your hair grew back just fine. Besides, I told you she's hard of hearing. She wouldn't have zapped you like she did if you'd spoken up."
Aric: "Celia, Mimi is a lot of things. But she's not cruel."
Celia: "She turned some cougar inside out. What do you call that?"
Liam: "Vengeance. He did steal her tomatoes. Are you going to steal her tomatoes?
Liam's grin lights up the room when Celia shakes her head.
Liam: "Then what's the problem?"
Liam: "Hey, Aric. Are you blushing?"
Aric: "No. I'm just hot from running."
Liam: *laughing* "Liar. You are blushing. Is it because of Celia? Hey Koda. Aric's blushing in front of Celia again. You're right, he has it bad - oh, look! She's blushing, too. You totally have to see it -"
I shoot my foot out, hooking his ankle and making him fall on his face. Liam scrambles to his feet, spitting out dirt.
Liam: "What was the for?"
Aric: "Sorry, it was an accident."
Celia: "I feel bad that you have to do this. I'm not sure when or how, but I promise to make it up to you."
Gemini turns away, embarrassed. I can't blame him. Out of all of us, he's the most quiet and shy around females, especially cute ones. Except Celia isn't one of those cute types, those who know they're cute and who toss their hair to get attention. Celia is muddy. Her skin glistens from the run and she's covered with cuts and scratches. She's also the most beautiful girl I've ever seen.
Gemini: "You owe me nothing. Just stay safe."
Celia: "I wish you could meet my sister, Taran."
Gemini: "Why? Is she pretty?"
He starts to blush.
Celia: "She;s gorgeous. She's also mouthy, loud, temperamental, and completely inappropriate."
Gemini: "That doesn't sound like anyone I'd be attracted to."
Celia: "I don't know about that. What I do know is Taran would make you smile. I think you could use a few more smiles."
Liam: "So, are you to a thing? Or are you just using each other for a few kisses and cuddles?"
Aric: *blushing* "We just met."
Liam: "You'd never know it, Juliette."
Aric: "Just ignore him."
Liam: "Are you guys going to be bed buddies again tonight? Do you think your parents will mind? If they don't, could you tell them to talk to mine? I'd like a bed buddy. Wouldn't you, Koda?"
Celia: "Something's touching me?"
Aric: "It's Mimi's magic. It's trying to determine if we're friend or foe."
Celia: "What happens if she thinks we're foe?"
Liam: "Oh, then we're totally screwed."
Celia: "Is she close?"