QSFer Penelope Peters has a new MMM Omegaverse book out, Omega Sanctuary Graduates book 1: The Accidental Alphas.
The pandemic a century ago changed everything – and now every unbonded omega must remain on an Omega Sanctuary for their entire lives or until they find a mate. John Willoughby is okay with that first option. Until he meets Wade Sheppard – and Javier Espinoza. But omegas can’t have two alphas… can they? And even if John wanted to leave with them – would the Sanctuary even allow it?
The Accidental Alphas is the first book in the Omega Sanctuary Graduates series. It is an MMM Omegaverse romance with a HFN ending. It features boarding school-esque shenanigans, Boston-style baseball fans, and distinguished silver foxes in very nice suits.
Wade started making noises as if he was choking on his tongue. “Oh, shit. Shit shit shit shit – you’re one of them?”
The young man frowned. “What do you mean, them?”
“Them them, you know. The omegas we’re supposed to talk up at the party.” Wade frowned. “Wait a sec. What do you mean, you can’t talk to us? Isn’t talking to us the point?”
“We’re not at the party now,” pointed out the young man. “We’re supposed to be supervised, so that everyone knows we’re talking and can monitor our mating progress. Every second we stand here talking is that many seconds less that they can decide whether or not we’re meant to be together.”
“Yeah, but that’s all pheromones, isn’t it?” asked Wade. “Doesn’t matter if we’re talking for five minutes or five hours, it’s all chemical.”
The young man shrugged. “Yeah, well. We’re supposed to spend quality time with the alphas, too, so I guess timetables are important somehow.”
Wade rolled his eyes. “And I thought Aunt Lydia was bad. She’s been reading me my horoscopes for the last week.”
“What’d they say?”
“I don’t know, but apparently I’m supposed to stay away from the color red.”
The young man chuckled. His smile—
Javier felt his entire chest turn over at that smile. He might have been pale, peaky, and entirely forgettable before. He wasn’t when he smiled. His entire face eased into something decidedly more wicked and playful. His eyes shone.
And then his mouth dropped open. “Oh, shit. The basil.”
The man fell to the ground, quickly picking up the plant. The pot was bright red, which accentuated the large, bright green leaves planted in it. Once named, Javier even recognized the smell in the air as basil – sweet and comforting. Luckily the pot didn’t appear to be broken, although there was a sizeable chip on one side of it, and some dirt scattered on the floor where it had fallen. The young man breathed a sigh of relief as he examined the plant.
“It’s okay,” he said, standing back up again before losing his balance again. “Woah.”
Wade reached out and grabbed his arm to steady him, just as Javier did the same. “You okay?”
“Yeah, just stood up too fast. I got dizzy.” The young man grinned sheepishly at him and patted the side of the plant. “But this is okay. I don’t think it’ll break apart.”
“What is it?” asked Wade.
“Sweet basil. It’s a good luck present for the person I’m meeting today,” explained John, looking surprised that Wade even had to ask.
“Oh,” said Wade, his eyes going wide. “You mean… an alpha… at the party… good luck that you’ll bond?”
The young man blushed – even his ears went pink as he caressed the side of the pot. “Well, not really. I mean, I guess that’d be fine, but… I don’t particularly want to bond. With anyone. Just, Professor Applebaum’s new to the area, and we’ve been emailing for years, and I thought – it’s probably stupid.”
“No, it’s nice,” said Wade quickly. “If you already know her and stuff.”
The young man nodded. “We’ve never met in person though. I grew this myself.”
“It’s nice,” said Wade, rubbing one of the leaves and then sniffing his fingers. “Strong, too.”
“Best kitchen garden anywhere,” boasted the young man. “Well. I’m assuming anyway. So – you’re here for the party, too?”
The look of shy hope on the young man’s face hit Javier straight in the chest – just about in the same place where the startled stare had lodged, too.
He’s adorable, thought Javier – but just as quickly as the thought came to him, he shoved it away. But he’s too young for me. And I’m not ready for another mate anyway. Might never be.
One look at Wade, however – and Javier realized that he wasn’t alone. Wade was dumbfounded, as if someone had just informed him that the world was upside-down and he’d better hold tight to the ground.
Huh. Him too?
“Oh. Yeah. Sort of. I mean. I really shouldn’t be here,” blurted out Wade. Javier tried not to groan out loud. “I’m not ready for a mate, and I’m really not the kind of alpha anyone here would want.”
“You don’t seem so bad to me,” the young man said, and then ducked his head as his cheeks flushed even more. “I mean – you apologized for knocking me over. And you look nice. I know it sounds like I’m just saying that—”
Wade sighed. “Look, kid, just because I’ve got manners doesn’t make me the kind of alpha who can afford Ferraris and fancy watches and losing a quarter mil as soon as they make it.”
The young man bristled. “Kid? I’m twenty-four.”
“Good for you,” said Wade, exactly as if he didn’t care. “I’m twenty-seven. What’s your point?”
“I’m forty-two,” said Javier, amused. Neither of them heard him.
“My point is I’m not a kid,” said the young man hotly. “I might be bonded by the end of the day.”
“I have a career,” Wade pointed out. “What are you gonna have? A baby?”
The young man squeaked in indignation. “I have a grove – and that’s not the point! Raising the next generation is an extremely important job that is every bit as demanding as whatever it is you do! Which is what, sit behind a desk and press a button all day? Ooo, that’s so difficult. You must get very tired by lunchtime.”
Wade glared at him. “Like you know tired? Just because you get to spend your life watching television and toddlers—”
“At least you get to go out and talk to people, I’m stuck here until I find a mate or die.”
That stopped Wade in his tracks. “Wait – they don’t kill you if you don’t find a mate, do they?”
The young man rolled his eyes. “Are you for real?”
Wade huffed. “Fine. Fine! I don’t know how it works. You know what, I don’t even care. I didn’t want to be here in the first place, and as soon as I can figure out how to get out of this shithole, I will.”
The young man pointed down the hall. “That way. Don’t they teach you to look for exit signs at alpha schools? Jeez, there’s even sunlight coming from that direction.”
Wade flushed. “You know what? I take it back. It was not nice meeting you. And next time, I’m listening to my aunt’s horoscopes.”
“You didn’t say it was nice to meet me in the first place!” hissed the young man. “And what’s that mean about your aunt’s horoscopes?”
“Take a look in the mirror,” retorted Wade. He turned on his heel and stormed down the hallway from where he’d come.
“Idiot,” grumbled the young man, still flushing. “I didn’t point that way!”
Penelope Peters has always loved reading about alternate histories and dystopian societies. She started writing this book in 2016. At the time, it did not involve a pandemic. She finished the first draft in 2019. It still did not have a pandemic, but it did have a lot of plot holes. And then 2020. Now the book has a pandemic, but no more plot holes. She is really, really, really sorry. She blames everything on not eating enough donuts.
Penelope, her husband, and her two sons have survived revolutions, evacuations, and are not the least bit thrilled to add quarantines and lockdowns to the list. They count themselves extremely lucky to be in a country that takes the pandemic seriously (mostly).