Zodiac Academy: The Awakening As Told by The Boys
BY Caroline Peckham and Susanne Valenti
Book 1.5 in the Supernatural Beast and Bullies series
The Vega twins are alive.
Those five words circle in my mind like an oncoming storm. They change everything about the future we thought had been set in stone. They challenge everything we were raised to be and the stability of the entire kingdom.
They’re coming to our academy looking for the life that was stolen from them, but we can’t let them take it back.
So much hangs in the balance and we can’t risk the arrival of two naïve princesses destroying everything we worked so hard for.
I have trained in dark magic, overcome all challenges and stood in the shadow of Lionel Acrux for far too long already. I won’t let them come between me and his downfall.
Which means they have to go before they discover how powerful they truly are.
Zodiac Academy: The Awakening As Told by the Boys, is a rewrite of the first book, The Awakening, but from the perspectives of Darius, Orion, Caleb, Seth and Max. When the Heirs found out about the Vega twins still being alive, and their hold on the throne in jeopardy, their families left it in no uncertain terms: do anything you need to get break the Vega's, before they come into their power. It should be easy, right? Two, untrained girls who grew up mortal? What they boys didn't expect was how headstrong the Vega's are, or how likeable they are. When they all find themselves drawn to the beautiful twins for their own reasons, lines are blurred, and what they need to do becomes harder and harder.
Initially when I started this series, I wasn't going to read this. My favorite books in the series are when the Heirs and Vega's work as a team, and are friends, so the idea of going back to the beginning, when the Heirs were just fucking terrible to Darcy and Tory seemed daunting. Then I finished Fated Throne, and the novellas, and I missed these characters. It wasn't terrible. It wasn't great. I think I was hoping for more information then what I got, but really, it was just more thorough on what we already knew - that Lionel is a controlling, manipulative bastard who beats his kids. One thing I did enjoy was getting more insight on how Darius and Orion interpreted their instant attractions to Tory and Darcy. Obviously it was much stronger for them (I suspect because they live their lives by the stars, whereas Tory and Darcy lived as mortals), and I think Orion suspected why he had these feelings, even if he didn't acknowledge them. And Darius ... I know hindsight is 20/20 ... but when you suspect the stars are talking to you, and that something you are doing if going to change fate ... fucking listen. But then where would the angst that we all love come from?
Highlights of this book is the bond between the Heirs, and the different bonds being formed between them and the Vega's. I think if you like these books, and you want to understand the Heirs motives at the beginning of the series, it's worth reading. It just doesn't add any substance to the series as a whole.
Orion's thoughts about Darcy, and him constantly chiding himself for them
Orion reading Darcy's palm
Orion smirking at the thought of panicking students over a pop quiz had be rolling
Tory kicking Milton's ass and having the last work with Darius when her naked pictures went online
Orion listening in on Darcy, and ignoring Francesca
Darius's comparison to Caleb's dimples to buttholes had me dying
The night at the club
Gabriel confront Orion about his drinking
Orion protecting the girls
I was tired and pissed off, and I didn’t wanna be here in the first place. So now this was gonna be done in asshole mode.
Which happened to be my default setting. That blue hair would look so fucking good wrapped around my fist.
By the stars, she’s gonna be your damn student, idiot. I supposed I could be lenient this once. She’d soon learn I was not to be fucked with anyway. Of course, then my treacherous mind ran to the dangerous place where my punishments involved me pushing her down on my desk and spanking her ass raw, Max: "Hey, Grus! Have you been flicking the bean over this moment all week? Because you look about ready to come from excitement alone."
Geraldine: "I very much doubt you have the skills required to know when a lady is about to orgasm, you vulgar ruffian. So kindly take your eyes off of my visage and return to your lollygagging with the other mutts on the reject pile,”
Tory: "I've known a lot of men who talk a big game in my lifetime, but most of them are just posturing assholes who don't have the balls to back it up. And I get the feeling that just might be you all over,”
she said, her voice this rich, seductive purr which had me hanging on every word. I took a step closer to her, inhaling her air and forcing her to tilt her head back as she looked up at me.
Darius: "Nah. I don't buy that for a second, Roxy. You didn't pick me because you thought I was full of shit." Tory: "No?"
she asked, holding my gaze and not looking the least bit inclined to back up which said a lot for her backbone. Or her idiocy. I still hadn't figured that out yet.
Tory: "Why don't you enlighten me then?"
I licked my lips as I gave her the exact same kind of assessment she'd just offered me, spending more time than was necessary appreciating her curves before landing right back on that defiant flare in her big green eyes.
Darius: "I think you're looking for something to wake you up. Something to rattle your cage and get your heart pumping. You aren't hoping I'm less than I make out - you're hoping I'm all of that and more. Because that fire in you is looking for something to make it burn hotter."
I’d literally rather crack my own skull open and let a crow feast on my brains. Ah, caffeine. One of my few friends.
Text: Lance: What have you seen??
Noxy: Just follow your heart.
Lance: Eat a dick. Noxy: Is that an offer?
Lance: You wish.
Noxy: I do. Every night on every star in the sky. By the stars, am I really making a boner escape plan? Seth: "I'm blind! I'll never see a hot rack or a rocking cock again!" Seth: "I mean who would have expected the Vega twins to be so fucking banging?"
He bit down on his fist with a groan.
Seth: "What do you think the chances are of us convincing the two of them to join us in an Heir/Princess orgy before we have to kick them the hell out of here?"
Darius: "Well seeing as there would be four dicks and a pair of siblings in that fantasy, I'm going to be saying no thanks,"
My thumb glided onto the line that indicated her love life and a shiver darted down my spine that I swear she felt too as she shifted in her seat. I kept my gaze on her palm, the air in the room becoming thinner and a faint whisper seemed to carry to me that held no words I understood. I glanced up at Darcy The markings spoke of a significant love in her life that would be wrought with hardship and emotional turmoil. It was split in places which indicated the worst of those hardships and the end of it was muddled with so many intersecting lines that it was hard to tell whether the love continued beyond them or if the relationship ended abruptly within those trials.
I found myself feeling oddly possessive of her as I considered this coming relationship. She was mine. I mean, her blood was mine. And I wasn’t going to allow some asshole to show up and claim her for himself. I knew it was irrational, but I couldn’t shift the feeling. This girl was not to be taken from me.
Orion: “I'll send reading materials on Coercion to your Atlas. You will have a lesson with me every Monday evening. I expect you to have a basic grasp on shields by our next one. There will be a test.”
I smirked. Fuck, I loved a pop quiz. Making students panic was my forte. One of them punched me in the kidney a moment before I caught an elbow to the chin and Max cried out in horror that Seth’s dick had slapped him in the face. Before long we were all cursing and bleeding and laughing as we fell in a heap beside each other, looking up at the moon through the trees.
Seth: "I love you guys,"
Seth said and the rest of us all punched him a few more times before he started licking any of us.
Darius: "Put your dick away, dude, you're making this weird,"
I told him, flicking his nipple and making him yip in pain.
Seth: "You know, every once in a while, you guys could all just get your dicks out instead of making me put mine away,"
he joked as he rolled over and got to his feet, heading off into the trees to find his clothes. Caleb: “Still all set to marry your cousin then?”
Caleb joked as he emerged from the trees, zipping up his fly. I growled at that joke because ha fucking ha, my life was just so amusing. I knew they didn't really mean anything by the teasing at my expense but for the love of the stars, sometimes I had to think I'd been cursed at birth.
Darius: “I’m not marrying my fucking cousin. Besides, she’s my second cousin,” Orion: "What the fuck, Darius?"
Darius: "You wouldn't talk to me all day, what did you expect?"
I demanded, shoving him right back and he bared his fangs at me in warning.
Orion: "I'm the one who could get into serious shit for having you here. You'll just get a little talking to - but I could end up sent to Darkmore Penitentiary if they got the idea that you were here for sordid reasons."
Darius: "Oh please, I'm out of your league. No one would believe I was here to suck your cock,"
I taunted and he almost laughed for a moment before frowning again. May the stars have fucking mercy on me. Orion: "I think I should go before I start trying to dry hump you,"
he joked and I laughed pitifully, hating this fucking curse my father had put on us. It twisted the essence of our friendship and muddied our own feelings to the point that we had to force distance between ourselves while knowing we'd be pining for each other at the same time.
Darius: "Why couldn't you just be a girl?"
I replied, shoving him out of my lap and raising my own fingers to heal the bite wound left on my neck. Orion: "Oh please, even if I was a girl I still wouldn’t let you fuck me." Seth: "There's something about them, isn't there?"
Seth said, sidling closer to me so that his arm grazed mine while I nodded.
Caleb: "It's their power. It's magnetizing."
Seth: "We're plenty magnetizing,"
Seth muttered irritably and my lips quirked with amusement.
Seth: "Of the two shiny new toys who everyone is fawning all over while we stand here abandoned in a corner like a pile of forgotten rocks? No." I never went swimming in there. It wasn’t sanitary with how much time that over-tanned creep spent in the water with his floaties. I swear I should just pop them all to save them from the molestation. They’d probably thank me for it. That was no life for a happy little blow-up creature. She started talking again but so did Blue and my ears chose for me as I concentrated on my Source.
Darcy: “Um Geraldine,”
Darcy said gently as I kept my gaze firmly locked on Francesca’s lips, not hearing a word leaving them.
Darcy: “It’s just...that acronym, it kinda spells ass.”
A laugh tumbled from my chest and Francesca gaped at me.
Francesca: “How’s that funny? My colleague died, Lance,”
Orion: “Right yeah, it was just how he died that was amusing,”
I tried to cover my ass.
Francesca: “Being blasted to pieces in front of his family by a maniac?”
Great. He had to die horrifically, didn’t he? Couldn’t have died drowning in a whirlpool of Griffin shit. Selfish bastard.
Fuck, if her hate makes me this savage, one drop of her love would corrupt me to my core. I didn’t look at Darcy again. I was going to three wise monkeys the fuck out of this problem. Because I was officially going to see no Blue. Hear no Blue. Speak no star damned Blue. Seth: "I can go monogamous. One night at a time anyway. For the right Fae."
His eyes slid to Cal who was tussling his hair with the hand which wasn't holding his drink and I had to fight a scowl at his dimples.
Caleb: "The day you go monogamous will be the day I start sucking cock," Max: "Come on, assholes, if the two of you waste time in a dick measuring contest then we'll lose them before you finish."
Darius: "Especially when Cal starts sobbing inconsolably," I asked, tearing my eyes from Roxy as I took my seat and trying not to give too much thought to what her and Cal were saying to one another. He was probably being all ‘do you like my dimples?’ and hopefully she was responding like ‘no, they look like two buttholes on either side of your face.’ And it was more than that, I had her in my arms again and I didn’t want to let go. She was the summer sun after the longest winter of my life and all I wanted to do was bask in her glow. Max: “I did some things last night…things I’m not proud of.”
Caleb: “Was it the bit where you climbed on the bar and shouted hail to the Vegas’ tits? Or the part where you got your cock out and said you could do the Macarena with it – I was kind of impressed that you could actually do it.”
Max: “Yes, Cal. Those are the parts I’m not proud of. Especially because my fucking parents had the pleasure of watching those videos all over the damn internet.”
Darius dropped his face into his hands with a heavy sigh.
Darius: “We’re so fucked.” Spending the evening overseeing the school dance was right up there with killing myself on my list of enjoyable things to do tonight. And as Nova had oh-so-kindly chosen me as one of the attending teachers, I simply couldn’t wait to bound and skip my way down to The Orb to start watching a bunch of students get wasted and grind on each other.
Oh no wait, I’d rather put my cock in a blender. Gabriel: “You’re wasting yourself. You’re so fucking special, Lance, if I could only show you, you wouldn’t even recognize the person I know you can be.”
Orion: “What do you want me to do then to be this special little person, Gabriel? Put on a tutu and throw glitter around the room?”
Gabriel: “No, you asshole. I want you to see your potential and step into it. Because the path you’re on leads you nowhere good, Lance." Darius: "What happens when I can no longer stomach the sight of my own reflection? What happens when the man you want so desperately to destroy Lionel Acrux ends up being just as bad as him in the effort it takes to stand against him?"
Orion: "You find something to hold on to. Something to anchor you to who you are and you don't fucking let go of it."