Her Dangerous Mistake #FirstChapter PEEK!

buy links: Evernight — Amazon — BookStrand — Smashwords — Barnes & NobleiBooks

   

Erotic Romance, Paranormal, Shifters, May-Dec, Rubenesque, Suspense
Word Count: 52,000

Moira is on the run—her apartment has been trashed, her bank account hacked, and someone is stalking her. Only one man is dangerous enough to keep her safe … that is, if she can convince him to help her. Neil Deven used to be her father’s best friend until betrayal turned him violent. Neil disappeared, and finding him might be the biggest mistake of her life, but Moira won’t survive alone.

Neil remembers Moira as a sweet little girl caught in the middle of her father’s criminal life. The gorgeous woman who shows up at his door is anything but a child, but he’s already got problems. Dragon shifters are a dying race with no way to change form, yet Neil’s powers keep growing. And Moira stirs long lost instincts—he can’t deny her need. He must protect the woman who will be his mate, or die trying.

What are people saying about Her Dangerous Mistake?

Reader review from Facebook:

“I like your use of Prohibition Era passages. And that teleportation thing? Unexpected, but even more so was your description of how she felt afterwards. Your attention to detail in that moment was amazing. … how did you convey her transformation and her emotions so beautifully??? OMG, it was like I was in her head, her heart.”
Chapter One Excerpt:

This is a mistake. Moira pressed a fist to her chest, but it didn’t help at all. Her heart still hammered against her ribs. She took a slow, deep breath, knowing that she couldn’t stay on this street for long, but she needed to calm down in order to figure out what to do next. And I haven’t been calm since last Tuesday. God. I need help. She stared forward, not really focusing on anything. Just beyond the bus shelter sat a long stretch of busy road. Cars zoomed by, indifferent to the poor suckers waiting to catch their daily ride to work. The rain drained the life out of everything, turning the world gray and damp.

“Miss? You dropped this.” A woman nudged Moira’s arm.

Moira startled, then turned. An older lady held out a frayed scrap of paper, folded into a small square.

Oh God, if I’d lost that… Her thoughts trailed off as she took the paper, pressing the corners into her palm until it hurt. “Thanks,” she murmured, shoving it into her jeans pocket. The edges were wet, and she hoped the water hadn’t smudged the ink.

The woman shrugged, shifting her bulging bag. She readjusted the strap automatically, not seeming to notice the weight. “No problem.” She shuffled past, then eased her overweight body onto the shelter bench and heaved out a sigh, effectively ignoring Moira.

Sensing the old woman’s exhaustion, Moira looked away. Everyone has problems. No one cares about you and your stupid life. She took another deep breath, and then made the decision she’d been putting off for the last three days. She really didn’t have any other choice. They’d trashed her apartment. Hacked into her bank account and shut off access. She didn’t own a car. Her phone had turned into a brick yesterday. She had a hundred bucks in cash, and a small backpack with a single change of clothes. You’re going to die if you don’t do this. They’ll catch you and kill you, whoever they are.

She chewed the inside of her cheek. She hadn’t set eyes on Neil Deven in fifteen years. She could hardly remember his face, and he was certain to look completely different now, anyway. She’d been only six, after all, when her father had fucked up his last good friendship with his drinking and violent rages and idiocy. Neil had been her dad’s best friend, though he had clearly been an ominous influence. What kind of man was Neil now? She had no idea, except she knew he wasn’t a safe option. Even as a girl, she’d felt something … odd about him. Something dark. Something dangerous. But isn’t that what I need? Someone who knows how to survive? Someone scary?

Shuddering, Moira shoved a hand into her pocket, fingering the edges of the paper. She’d found the address of the bar Neil owned using a computer at the library. The next thing to do was get on the bus and hope like hell he remembered the kid he used to bounce on his knee. She remembered him laughing a lot, but she also remembered him beating her dad unconscious. This is the last idea I’ve got, she reminded herself when the bus pulled up.

As she got on, the rain washed away the tears she couldn’t seem to control.

****

Neil stared at the spreadsheet, frowning. Something wasn’t adding up, but he didn’t have the time or the patience to track it down this morning. He closed the document and clicked his laptop into lockdown. Maybe he’d go over it again it later. Maybe not. He fucking hated doing the books, though he was always careful to keep a close eye on things.

“Boss, someone at the front is asking for you.”

Neil looked up. His bartender, Andy, stood in the doorway, hands full of a stack of clean bar towels.

“Who is it?” Neil leaned back in his chair and massaged the kinks out of his neck. Staring at a computer screen always gave him a headache.

“Didn’t say. It’s an older man. Distinguished looking.” Andy shrugged. “He’s wearing a pricy Italian suit.”

A hot flare of anger rippled through Neil. There was only one person he knew who wore clothes like that and would dare to come knocking on his door in the middle of the morning, when Dracona was closed. He took a deep breath, controlling his rage. Weird things had started happening around him lately when he let his self-control slip. “Thanks. Please let him know I’ll be out in a minute.”

Andy gave him a look that told Neil he knew something was up. Neil wasn’t about to enlighten his friend. He didn’t want Andy mixed up in this, whatever this turned out to be. His father wouldn’t show up unannounced on a whim. Neil sighed, rubbing his temples. His headache had increased about a thousand percent since his bartender had knocked on his door. “I’m fine, Andy. Just let him know.”

Andy grimaced, but he backed out of the office. “Sure thing, Boss.” He headed into the club’s open area, ostensibly to put away the towels and let the man know Neil was coming.

Neil stood up and walked to the front of his desk, then closed his eyes and centered himself. The last thing he needed to do was lose his temper, especially if it was his father out there. He took three deep breaths, and then he took three more. He calmed his mind. When he opened his eyes, his father was standing in the door of his office, face twisted into a mask of disapproval. He wore a grey suit, impeccably tailored, like everything else about him. The color clashed with his dark eyes, but no one would dare mention it. Neil far preferred his own battered jeans and comfortable sweater to his father’s more cosmopolitan style. Arrogance never goes out of style, he reminded himself. And dear old Dad’s got it in spades.

“Your lackey told me you would be right out, and I assumed you were busy, but here you are, doing absolutely nothing. Your lack of respect never falters, does it?” The older man stepped into the room and shut the door behind him as if he owned the place.

Neil gritted his teeth. All the work he’d done to calm himself disappeared in an instant. “Hello to you, too, Dad.” He narrowed his eyes. “Show yourself in, why don’t you? Have a seat.” His father had already lowered himself into Neil’s desk chair.

“This … establishment is beneath you,” his father replied, sweeping an arm out contemptuously. He made sure to pause on the word establishment, as if Neil gave a shit what his father thought, though the note of derision in his voice did grate on his nerves. “It is beneath the Deven legacy,” his father added.

“Dracona is a very successful business.” Neil leaned against his desk. He’d be damned if he’d sit in the frigging visitor’s chair in his own office.

“You mock your heritage,” his father growled, eyes flinty. “You named a filthy bar after our people.”

Neil sighed. His father’s opinion never changed. “Why are you here? Because if it’s to berate me about actually earning an income instead of living off some random trust fund…” he trailed off sarcastically. “Oh, yeah, that’s right. I don’t have a trust fund, do I? Because you already spent all the money my grandfather left to me. How could I have forgotten about that?” Neil raised an eyebrow, positive it would drive his father wild. Even if he never shows it. Neil smiled internally as he saw anger flash in his father’s eyes. I love pissing the old bastard off.

His father straightened his tie fastidiously, fingers a bit stiffer than they should be.

Ha. Got under your skin, didn’t I? Neil thought, pleased.

“Your mother and I have decided that it’s time for you to take your place as a Council guard,” his father said, putting his hands flat on Neil’s desk. “It’s time to stop this foolishness.”

Neil laughed derisively. Never. Not in a million years will I play servant boy to a long-dead race of arrogant has-beens. He took a careful breath, making sure that his control never wavered. “No.”

His father glared at him. “This demeaning insistence on playing human—”

“We are human. None of us have any power anymore, and you know it.” Neil stood up straight, unable to keep his pose of relaxed indifference. “None of us has shifted to dragon form in a hundred years. You and the rest of the Council are delusional.”

His father stood, eyes flashing gold. Neil snorted, unimpressed. His father had one trick: the ability to manipulate others with his mind. But not my mind. You’ve never been able to force me to obey you, and you never will, you perverse fuck. Neil glared right back at him.

“You will come home and take your place, and then we will see about a mate for you. You will continue the Deven line.” His father folded his arms across his chest as his eyes glowed brighter.

Neil stared at his father, and then laughed again, genuinely amused. “Your parlor tricks don’t work on me, remember?” He knew that if he looked in a mirror, his dark eyes would be as golden as his father’s right now. Ignoring his father’s persuasion took little effort, but it still tended to trigger the last, surviving vestige of his heritage. Or almost the last… He banished the thought to the back of his mind. Focus. “I’m immune to your voice and your eyes, as you well know.” He glanced at the clock on the wall. “Go home, Dad. I have a lot to do before the dinner rush.” He stepped back and opened the door, holding out his free arm to indicate the meeting was over. “Tell Mother I said hi.” He paused, smirking. “Oh, wait, you can’t, because you don’t even live in the same house anymore, do you? You probably had to set up a meeting with her to discuss me.”

His father growled. “You have a responsibility to your race.” He walked over to Neil, doing his best to loom over him. It didn’t work. Neil stood several inches taller than his old man. “If you continue to follow this path, you will be cast out.”

What a hardship. Not. Neil snorted. “Uh-huh. As if that means a damn thing to me.” He deliberately rolled his eyes, just to provoke his father further. “Or to anyone, for that matter. Our people are a dead species. None of us can shift, like the dragons of old. All you can do is force a bunch of poor humans and some of your own people into obeying you. No thank you. That’s not my idea of a fun time.” He jerked his head at the exit. “Goodbye. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”

“You will regret this.” His father strode through the door with his arrogance wrapped around him like a suit of armor.

“Unlikely,” Neil muttered to himself as he watched his father weave through the dark wood tables. When he finally stepped out of the bar, Neil slumped against the frame of his office door. Dealing with his father both exhausted and annoyed him. And no way am I going to let myself get roped into a loveless marriage like my parents. I’d rather be single until my death, even if it means being alone for a thousand years.

“Who was that?” Andy asked, edging closer. The towels he’d been holding were gone, but he had three bottles of merlot stacked along his right arm. “He looked like a mobster.” Andy made a face. “A creepy mobster, with a sort of plantation owner vibe going on. All smug and shit. Not cool.”

“Not cool” is the understatement of the year. Neil grinned, his mood lightening. He had better friends than he deserved. “That was my father, though ‘mobster’ isn’t a bad description for him.”

Andy stared at him. “You have a father? I thought you’d sprung full grown from an egg or something. Like one of those raptors from Jurassic Park. You’re always so calm and interested looking, right up until you strike.” The twinkle in his eyes told Neil he was teasing. He certainly didn’t know about Neil’s dragon blood. No one knew of Neil’s true heritage, because it meant nothing. For all intents and purposes, he was human.

Neil laughed, letting the tension from his father’s visit slide out of him. “Sorry to disappoint you. My arrival here on Earth was much more mundane than cracking open a human-baby-sized egg, though I’m sure my mother would argue otherwise.”

Andy smiled. “Now I’m trying to imagine you breaking out of an egg. Yuck.” He pretended to gag. “That’s not a pretty image. Gunk everywhere.” He waved his free arm.

“Like from a horror movie, right?” Neil egged him on. “All claws and teeth.”

“Exactly,” Andy said, grinning. “Screaming humans, alien invasion, yeah… Gross.”

Neil laughed. “Sadly, my birth was entirely normal, except for the part where my mother handed me off to a nanny as soon as I popped out.” Neil tried not to let his bitterness seep into his voice, but from the look on Andy’s face, he doubted he’d succeeded.

“I had no idea your parents were even alive. You never mention them,” Andy said, his smile slipping away. He unloaded the wine bottles onto a nearby table.

“That’s because there’s nothing to say about them.” Neil lifted a shoulder as he wrestled his emotions back under control. The last thing he needed was for his power to manifest and freak his friend out. “My parents are assholes. I try to never speak to them if I can help it. I don’t go home. I don’t invite them here. We’re all better off that way.”

Andy lifted an eyebrow. “So, what was your father doing here? He didn’t look happy about it.”

“He wants me to come back home and marry someone suitable.” Neil shook his head. “No, thank you.”

“Wait, an arranged marriage? I thought that shit went out of style, oh, a couple hundred years ago.” Andy lined up a series of wine glasses on his arm. “That’s totally medieval, man.”

“Yeah, well, my family is weird.” Neil didn’t bother to explain any further. “So, you got the last of the bar stocked and ready?”

“Yup. Just gotta put these away.” Andy grabbed the three bottles of wine with his free hand and headed to the bar, carefully balancing a truly ridiculous amount of glass on his arms.

With something close to amazement, Neil watched him successfully navigate the tables and offload the glasses. If he tried that, he’d probably drop everything in under thirty seconds. “Excellent. You’re a good bartender, Andy, and a better friend.”

Andy tossed him a grin and a salute.

Neil smiled, then glanced around Dracona. The dark wood tables gleamed with polish, the elaborate iron chandeliers were lit and sparkling dimly, and judging from the delicious scents wafting from the kitchen, Chef Joreen had everything under control in the food department.

“Maybe you should take today off,” Andy said unexpectedly, wiping at a nonexistent stain on the bar. “You never give yourself a break. Joreen and I can handle things for one night.”

“I don’t need a break.” I need my parents and the rest of the Council to leave me the hell alone.

Andy snorted. “Yes, you do.” He hung up the damp towel and lined cut fruit up at the end of the polished wood bar. The automatic lights clicked on, reflecting muted blues and yellows on Andy’s bald skull.

Neil grimaced. “Enough with the armchair therapy, Andy. I’m fine.” Ignoring his bartender’s eye roll, Neil headed down the hall behind his office toward the rear back door just beyond the restrooms. He hoped some fresh air would clear his mind. He ignored the emergency exit sign and pushed the heavy metal door open. A cool breeze wafted past his face as he looked out over the gravel parking lot that terraced around the building. A small stream lay at the bottom of his property, and he could just make out the sound of the water bubbling over rocks. He half-smiled as he leaned on the door.

Okay, yeah. This works. He breathed deeply, letting the sounds of nature settle his nerves. When shots echoed through the natural gully, instead of flinching, his first reaction was to punch something. He never got a fucking break. He curled his fingers into fists as his instincts shifted into high alert.

Hunters? Here? It wasn’t uncommon to hear shots in this part of Pennsylvania, but it was early October, and his bar wasn’t that far from Main Street. It’s too early for deer. And those shots are too close to be hunters. The closest shooting range lay five miles south of Dracona. State game lands lay fifteen miles north. Those shots didn’t belong here, not now. Not ever. His dragon, already stirring from his father’s unwelcome visit, woke up in the back of his mind, dark and dangerous and pissed off about the threat to his territory. Neil gripped the edge of the door, taking deep breaths. Now was not a good time for his shifter blood to wake up. Things tended to catch fire around him when that happened.

“Hey, boss, you okay?” Andy asked, putting a hand on Neil’s arm.

Neil turned on him, teeth bared. “Close the door and lock it behind me.”

Andy frowned. “Neil, your eyes…” He trailed off, taking a step back.

Fuck. So much for not burdening Andy with my shit. Neil had a feeling he’d be busy later tonight trying to explain away the glow in his gaze. Right now though, he couldn’t care less. He turned back toward the woods. “I heard shots. It’s not safe out here.”

“Doesn’t that mean you should come inside?” Andy asked carefully.

Persistent guy. Probably why we’re friends, though now isn’t the time to be stubborn. Neil let go of the doorframe and let his gaze roam the lot. Someone was out there. Someone who didn’t belong. “Go inside, Andy,” he said again, more harshly this time. A long moment later, the door clicked shut behind him. He exhaled, concentrating on keeping the energy that curled at the base of his spine under control. When he didn’t keep his focus, the energy spiraled out, searching for something to burn, and the most flammable thing around was Dracona. He didn’t need his bar going up in flames over a few stray shots that might not mean anything.

Branches snapped. Neil walked down to the second terrace lot, ignoring the gravel crunching underfoot as he searched the tree line. His dragon rumbled in the back of his head, huge and impossible. Neil gritted his teeth. He had to keep his cool. He didn’t want to set fire to the cars that were parked at the edge of the lot any more than he wanted to burn down his building. Or the trees. Or the birds… His thoughts trailed off when he caught sight of a woman crouched near the big oak at the north end of his property. Her head was turned away, so he couldn’t see her expression, but her body told him that she was running from something. Her silhouette spoke of both coiled energy and skittishness.

Someone’s after her. Neil took another step forward, not trying to be quiet. He wanted her to hear him coming.

The woman whipped her head around. Fear chased over her face, and then her brilliant blue eyes met his and Neil lost control of everything. His dragon roared silently. Blue flames licked along the gravel, almost invisible.

The woman didn’t notice. She stared at him as if he were her worst nightmare, or possibly her wildest dream—he couldn’t tell which. Neil couldn’t look away either, because he knew her. He never forgot a face, and this one in particular had haunted him for over a decade. He took a deep breath, and then let it out as he called the flames back to himself.

“Moira.”

First kiss snippet for Her Dangerous Mistake!

Releasing Friday, April 7th!

  

Erotic Romance, Paranormal, Shifters, May-Dec, Rubenesque, Suspense
Word Count: 52,000
Heat Level: 3
Published By: Evernight Publishing

Moira is on the run—her apartment has been trashed, her bank account hacked, and someone is stalking her. Only one man is dangerous enough to keep her safe … that is, if she can convince him to help her. Neil Deven used to be her father’s best friend until betrayal turned him violent. Neil disappeared, and finding him might be the biggest mistake of her life, but Moira won’t survive alone.

Neil remembers Moira as a sweet little girl caught in the middle of her father’s criminal life. The gorgeous woman who shows up at his door is anything but a child, but he’s already got problems. Dragon shifters are a dying race with no way to change form, yet Neil’s powers keep growing. And Moira stirs long lost instincts—he can’t deny her need. He must protect the woman who will be his mate, or die trying.

First Kiss SNIPPET–>

Moira halted. “You think I’m pretty?”

The doubt in her voice broke his heart, and unexpectedly, Neil’s dragon roared back to life. Subtle flames licked the ceiling, but he was tired of suppressing his power and he let them dance, hoping she wouldn’t look up.

“Oh, you have no idea,” he said, hearing the arousal in his voice. He couldn’t help it. He stared at her eyes, and then his gaze dropped to her lips. He wanted her with an urgency he couldn’t explain. “You’re beautiful.” He gave in to his instincts and cupped her face with his palms. Somewhere in the back of his mind his conscience yelled about their age difference, but Neil’s dragon growled that part of him into submission. She was his. No one else would have her.

Moira dropped the light as he bent towards her.

****

Oh my God, he’s going to kiss me, was Moira’s last coherent thought, and then Neil’s mouth descended on hers. She gasped, and he took it as an invitation, nibbling on her lower lip. “Neil,” she said, voice breaking. “What are you doing?”

“I think that should be obvious,” he murmured, before kissing her again. He crowded her up against the stone wall, hands tilting her head.

Moira trembled. He tasted like spice and smoke and something else she couldn’t describe. His lips coaxed hers into opening, and then his tongue dipped inside. She gripped his arms, certain if she didn’t hold on she’d fall down. His muscles felt like stone. No, stronger than stone, and hot, like a brick oven that’s been going all day long. When he growled, deep in his throat, the sound shot through her like a bolt of lightning. The ache between her thighs pushed out of her in a groan. She couldn’t stand this. She needed more. She shoved closer, wishing they were naked and not … here. Not in a stone tunnel minutes away from discovery. This is crazy. This is not what I expected.

“Yeah, that’s it. Open up for me, Moira,” he murmured as his kiss turned demanding. He slotted a leg between hers, pushing the thick hardness of his erection into her hip.

“Neil,” she forced out, gripping his hair. “We have to stop.”

“No.” He nipped her lips again. “You’re mine.”

Moira froze as everything inside her agreed with him. “We can’t.”

He snarled.

God, he’s overwhelming. And amazing, but this is crazy. We have to get out of here. Gathering her courage, Moira put her hands on his face to get his attention. The roughness of his stubble caught against her palms, and she drew in a shuddering breath. How could a single kiss destroy her so thoroughly? Neil’s eyes glowed gold in the darkness.

Her Dangerous Mistake is an Editor’s Pick! #excerpt #coverreveal

Releasing April 7, 2017!

Dragons and fire and fated mates…. He can’t deny her need.

Scroll down for an excerpt!

  

Erotic Romance, Paranormal, Shifters, May-Dec, Rubenesque, Suspense
Word Count: 52,000
Heat Level: 3
Published By: Evernight Publishing

 

Moira is on the run—her apartment has been trashed, her bank account hacked, and someone is stalking her. Only one man is dangerous enough to keep her safe … that is, if she can convince him to help her. Neil Deven used to be her father’s best friend until betrayal turned him violent. Neil disappeared, and finding him might be the biggest mistake of her life, but Moira won’t survive alone.

Neil remembers Moira as a sweet little girl caught in the middle of her father’s criminal life. The gorgeous woman who shows up at his door is anything but a child, but he’s already got problems. Dragon shifters are a dying race with no way to change form, yet Neil’s powers keep growing. And Moira stirs long lost instincts—he can’t deny her need. He must protect the woman who will be his mate, or die trying.

Story Excerpt:

Neil unbuttoned his jeans and eased them down, letting out a breath when his erection finally sprang free of its prison. He kicked the fabric away, then palmed his cock. Pre-cum wet the tip. He thumbed over the sensitive skin, shuddering. He glanced at Moira, sleeping on his sofa. His erection swelled even more, as if he needed the reminder that this arousal was all for her. “Fuck,” he muttered, walking back to the bed. He’d never be able to function if this didn’t subside. He wanted Moira more than he’d ever wanted another woman. Thoughts of his father, the Council, and the men chasing after Moira shredded down to nothing in the face of his need.

“Neil?” Moira mumbled, rolling over.

He froze before he could sit down, hand full of hard-on. “Yeah?” his voice cracked. He cleared his throat and tried again. “You okay?” He deliberately ignored the jeans on the floor. Hell, he wanted her to see him like this. He couldn’t deny it.

She opened her eyes sleepily. When she caught sight of him standing nude, she gasped.

Neil swallowed as the look on her face enflamed him even more, and then he mentally gave up the fight to keep away. His hand stroked down and then up his shaft as he returned her gaze, letting his desire show on his face. He knew his eyes would be gold in this light. He wondered if that would scare her.

“What are you doing?” Her voice trembled. She put a hand to her mouth as if to hide her bewilderment, but he saw how her gaze flicked down to his groin, then back up again. Her delicate skin took on a pink hue.

He smiled tightly, even as his fist squeezed his erection. “I’m trying to be a gentleman.” Maybe with her watching he could climax and this ridiculous attraction to her would subside. He stroked himself again. “And I’m failing.” He slid his other hand down and cupped his balls. The jolt of pleasure that shot through him made him suck in a harsh breath.

“I’ll just go—” She stumbled off the sofa, almost falling onto the glass coffee table.

Neil was at her side keeping her from falling before he could consciously make the decision to move. He put his hands on her shoulders. “Careful.” His voice had gone low and soft. His dragon half roared in his head as Moira lifted her face to him. “You don’t want to break the glass.”

“I’m sorry,” she whispered, but didn’t seem any more able to walk away from him than he could from her.

“Jesus Christ,” Neil muttered as his palms felt her warmth. She smelled like lavender and mint. Like everything he ever wanted. The soft blush on her face made him want to kiss her gently. Her full lips made him want to bite her. “Don’t be sorry. I’m the one who’s sorry,” he rasped as his instincts pushed at him again. Blue flames licked the ceiling of the apartment as his self-control wavered, but Neil no longer cared. Even if the building burned around him, he had to have her.

Moira frowned. “For what?” She kept her eyes firmly above his shoulders. She didn’t seem to notice the fire.

“For this.” He leaned in and kissed her, nibbling at her lips until she opened her mouth. He wrapped his arms around her as he licked inside, groaning when his cock brushed her hip. Her clothes scraped the sensitive head of his erection, but the pain felt good. He sank his hands into her hair, holding her head exactly where he wanted it. She was so soft and small he knew he could break her without even trying. Guilt scraped at him, but not enough to make him stop.

“Oh my God, Neil,” she said, voice breaking when he finally released her mouth to kiss down her jaw. “What are you doing?” She shuddered. “You’re naked.”

“I’ve got to have you,” he said, hands busy at her shirt. He lifted it up and over her head with one swift movement. “Please, Moira.”

She shivered, hands covering her breasts, but Neil already had her bra unfastened. He drew it forward and down her arms, then off entirely, mouth watering. Her skin was so delicate he worried he’d mark her with his desperation, and then he decided he wanted to mark her.

Mine, he thought, bending down to bite at the juncture of her neck and shoulder. His hands went to her breasts, pushing her fingers out of the way. “You’re gorgeous,” he said against her skin, more enamored with her courage than he was with her body. He sat on the coffee table and drew her in between his legs. “So strong.” He kissed down to her breast and took the tip in his mouth, suckling soft at first, and then hard enough to make her cry out. How could a woman tough enough to run away from everything she’d ever known be so fragile? He sucked his way across to her other breast, inhaling her essence as he trapped her between his thighs. His erection oozed pre-cum as it brushed against her legs.

“This is impossible,” she cried, threading her fingers into his hair and squeezing. She clearly didn’t want him to stop. He bit her nipple a little harder, encouraged when she moaned.

“You don’t want me.” Her grip tightened. “I’m overweight and too young. And weak.”

“Don’t want you?” Neil tipped his head back into her palms, stung. “Yes, I do. More than anything.” He cupped both her breasts and flicked his thumbs over her nipples until they puckered tightly. “And weak isn’t the word I’d use for you, Moira. You’re beautiful, and courageous.”

She trembled.

Neil grinned fiercely. “Believe me, I know what I want. I know that I shouldn’t want you, but I’m tired of fighting myself. You’re mine, Moira. You’re perfect.”

“You’re crazy,” she whispered, staring at him, lips red from his teeth. “We barely know each other.”

“Not true.” He leaned up and kissed her again, smiling against her mouth when she moaned. “Say yes, Moira. Let me make love to you.”

A Warlock’s Best Friend #excerpt

Releasing October 31!

Gay Romance, Paranormal, Humor
Word Count: 15,300
Published By: Evernight Publishing

 

Dakota thought moving to a new town for his new job would be easy. He gets to live with his best friend Leo, far from the machinations of his mother and the witches who want his genes. Unfortunately, his new boss keeps hitting on him. Is there nowhere a nice guy can hide from women who want his body?

Leo thinks pretending to be his best friend’s lover will be hilarious. He loves a good joke, and he’s delighted that Dakota finally lives close enough for them to hang out again like they did as kids. So what if they’re not gay? It’s all for a good cause: keep Dakota out of the clutches of a crazy woman.

Neither of them expects their charade to feel so real. How were they supposed to know that one kiss would lead to sex, or that true power comes from love?

Story Excerpt:

“We should practice kissing.” Leo watched Dak’s face carefully. One hint of revulsion and he’d back down. He didn’t want to alienate his best friend. He wanted to help.

Dakota let out a breath. “That was not what I was expecting you to say.”

“What were you expecting?” Leo surreptitiously wiped his hands on his jeans.

“That we should get promise rings or something completely ridiculous.” Dakota flexed his fingers. “Or buy matching pink shirts.” He cocked his head. “Oh, wait. I forgot. You already own a pink shirt.”

Leo scowled. “Pink is a completely functional color.”

“On a construction company boss?”

“No one’s ever said anything to me about it.” Leo defended himself. He liked that particular button-down shirt. He looked good in it.

Dakota snorted. “That’s because even when you wear a pink shirt, you look like you could snap spines in half without breaking a sweat.”

“So what? I work out. Are you going to consider my idea, or not?” Leo asked, trying to head off further talk about his wardrobe. Talking about a pink shirt with his best friend was gay, not owning one.

Dakota sat up. “You were serious?”

Leo nodded. “Of course.” His gaze dropped to his friend’s mouth. He tried to tell himself he was examining Dakota’s lips clinically, for information purposes, but his skin tingled when he considered what it might be like to put his mouth there. “I mean, I’ve never kissed a dude. I have no idea what it’s like.”

Dakota stared at him. “You’re actually serious about this.”

“Have you kissed a guy?” Leo asked, swallowing past an unexpected lump in his throat. If Dakota had kissed a man, he decided he would be pissed because his best friend had never told him about it.

Yeah. That’s totally why.

“No.” Dakota looked away.

“No, you won’t kiss me, or no, you’ve never kissed a dude?” Leo shifted closer. He could smell the last vestiges of Dakota’s cologne, mostly worn off after a day of teaching.

Dakota reached for his water bottle and uncapped it. He took a long swig, then wiped his mouth with the back of his hand.

Leo stared. How in the hell did Dak make that move look so suggestive? His lips were puffy now.

“No, I’ve never kissed a guy,” Dakota said clearly, putting the bottle back down. His blue eyes were almost black in the low light. The sun had set an hour ago, and neither of them had bothered to turn on more than the single lamp near the sofa.

Leo took a deep breath, feeling weirdly wired. The inside of his skull buzzed with static. He couldn’t form a coherent thought right now if someone paid him good money. “Okay, then.”

Dakota quirked an eyebrow. “Okay.” He had a half-smile going on his face.

Leo relaxed minutely when he saw Dakota’s familiar expression. He couldn’t remember how many times that look had dared him into trouble. “You’d better not punch me,” he muttered, reaching up to cup Dakota’s cheeks.

Dakota huffed. “You’d pound me if I tried.”

Leo didn’t answer. He was too busy trying to figure out how to put his mouth in the right spot. For some reason, his body wasn’t obeying him right now. Just get on with it, you idiot, he told himself. His cock had thickened, making his jeans moderately uncomfortable. What the fuck was wrong with him? This was practice, nothing more.

“Oh, for fuck’s sake,” Dakota said, impatiently leaning closer. He kissed Leo on the mouth, light and fast.

His lips feel like pillows. Leo flinched, more at the absurd thought than from the taste of his best friend on his tongue. “Jesus.”

Dakota sat back. “There. Are you happy now? This was your idea.”

He doesn’t seem to have any trouble speaking, Leo thought irritably. “No. I’m not done.” He leaned in, this time grabbing Dak’s face. He kissed him, no fooling around this time. He nibbled on the side of Dakota’s mouth until he gasped, then slid his tongue inside. When Dakota moaned under his breath, Leo shuddered, sliding his hands down his friend’s chest. The bump of Dak’s nipple rings beneath his fingertips made his dick twitch.

“You taste like cinnamon,” he murmured, sucking on Dak’s lower lip. Leo wanted to do a hell of a lot more than suck. He wanted to bite. He sat back, sucking air. What the fuck just happened?

Dakota was staring at him, mouth open and wet.

“Christ.” Leo leaned in again, kissing him savagely. He hauled Dakota over until they fell back onto the couch. Dakota’s breath whooshed out when he fell along Leo’s body, legs on either side. They both froze as their erections brushed each other.

“Oh my freaking God,” Dakota said, shaking. His hands pressed into Leo’s shoulders.

“This isn’t funny. Don’t you dare fucking laugh,” Leo told him, low and vicious. “I can’t fucking think.” He’d never been so turned on in his entire life.

“Do I look like I’m laughing?” Dakota asked, hair a tangled mess. His eyes glittered. “You had your tongue down my throat.” His voice shook.

You look desperate. Leo didn’t say the words out loud, because he still couldn’t breathe. How could he talk when he couldn’t get enough air in his damned lungs? When Dakota’s hips twitched, Leo swallowed. Hard. Dakota’s dick dug into Leo’s hip like a fucking brand. Leo wanted more than a kiss, God help him.

Caged Killer excerpt!

CAGED KILLER coming in June!

Contemporary, Gay Erotic Romance (MM), Romantic Suspense, Dark Romance, Suspense
Word Count: 30,200
Heat Level: 4
Published By: Evernight Publishing

Knox is a killer hired to catch a thief: what happens when the thief catches the assassin instead, and chains him up? Nothing good. Nothing … sane.

Knox Calvin has spent his life repressing his sexuality. When Mick Lannon picks at his carefully constructed mental cage with a knife, he isn’t prepared for the fallout. Unfortunately, Knox isn’t the kind of man who can be bound for long, and Mick has his own demons to wrestle into submission. When Mick’s vendetta against his aunt’s killer spirals into all out war, Knox escapes to watch the carnage from a distance.

Mick likes his sex casual, his partners breathing, and doesn’t much care about anything else. Knox wasn’t interested in sex at all until Mick shackled him to a wall. What happens when one moment’s slip into darkness wakes up the monster in both men?

Story Excerpt:

Mick suddenly climbed on the bed, straddling Knox.

“Oh, Jesus Christ.” The words fell out of Knox’s mouth before he could stop them. Mick’s weight pressed right onto his dick, hard and painful and fucking perfect.

Mick licked his lips. “Well, well. Clearly you didn’t see that coming.” He shimmied down a bit more, slotting Knox’s erection right between his legs. The fucker looked like he was getting off on this shit.

“Fuck you.” Knox refused to let his hips buck up into the bastard’s heat. He was not gay. He wasn’t anything at all. He wanted to twist Lannon around and crack his spine into pieces, but he didn’t have the leverage. Not anymore. Not with the bastard on top of me, but the moment he moves…

“That can definitely be arranged.”

Knox shuddered.

Mick ground down, sliding his knife up Knox’s arm like a deadly snake. “I like blood.” He pressed in with the tip, just enough to sting. Blood trickled down Knox’s arm, circling the tattoo inked into the crook of his elbow.

“What the hell are you doing?” Knox couldn’t seem to stop running off at the mouth. “What did you dose me with?” There had to be some reason his body was so hot to trot right now, after years of indifference to pretty much anything or anyone. Drugs were a likely culprit.

“BDSM baby.” Mick laughed. “I chained you up. That’s it.” He leaned down and kissed the blood on Knox’s skin. “And you like it. Who knew? I certainly didn’t. They call you Fort Knox, you know. ‘He’s stone cold,’ they said, when I got the file on you.” He kissed the edge of Knox’s biceps. “Such lies.” His lips tickled against Knox’s skin. “You’re not cold at all, are you?”

“Whatever you pumped into my veins is doing this.” Knox bit back a groan. The scent of chocolate swept over him. “Fucking get off me.”

Mick licked up his arm, ignoring his pleas. “You are an unexpected treasure, Knox Calvin.”

Knox pressed his lips together so tightly the skin went numb. “You’re a fucking cocksucker.”

Mick sat back up again, pushing Knox’s erection flat. It hurt like hell. “Sometimes, yeah.” He licked his lips. “And obviously,” he punctuated his words with a roll of his hips. “So are you.”

Knox growled, beyond pissed and heading straight into rage. “Motherfucker.”

“Mmm. Look at you.” Mick’s eyes traveled along Knox’s torso. “You had no idea you could feel this way, did you?” The thief grinned. “Oh, I’m going to enjoy this.”

“Fuck you.” Knox felt like there wasn’t enough air going into his lungs. Fucking drugs.

“You’re repeating yourself.” Mick slid his knife into the opening of Knox’s t-shirt, and with a swift, sure jerk, split the fabric right down the middle. “Well, would you look at that?” He put his palm dead center on Knox’s chest. The heat from his hand burned. “You have a picture of a cage inked into your skin, Mr. Calvin.”

That’s it. He’s fucking close enough. Knox twisted, lifting up and using his legs to trap Mick. Using his chains as leverage, he tenses his shoulders and flipped them both over, pinning the bastard underneath his body. The mattress squeaked like an old whore, but he ignored it, trusting the steel bedframe to keep them off the floor. He shoved an arm over Mick throat, metal rattling.

“Where’s the key?” Knox shifted the chains, digging the shackle’s cuff into Mick’s shoulder. I should just kill him and get it over with, he thought, but he didn’t press harder. Something about this guy made him want to let the situation play out. What would the thief do next? And it’s not like I have anything else to do right now.

Mick narrowed his eyes. “I have a knife at your jugular, Knox.” He leaned the tip into Knox’s skin.

“I don’t fucking care.” Knox pressed harder. The sting at his neck felt like hardly anything.

Mick’s gaze went flat. “I really don’t want to kill you.”

“The feeling’s mutual. This is business.” Knox frowned. “Give me the key.”

The blade at his throat sank in unexpectedly. This time the pain wasn’t small. Wasn’t good. Warmth blossomed over his shoulder, wet and strange. Knox blinked, trying to think, and then Mick flipped them back over. He threw his blade to the side and slapped a hand over Knox’s throat. “You stupid fuck.”

Vaguely, Knox realized that his hard-on had finally subsided.

Lone Wolf Chapter One Freebie! #excerpt

Want to know what all the fuss is about? Here’s your chance to sample the story of Shane and his entirely unexpected hybrid mate, Tim! Scroll down to experience the first chapter of international bestseller LONE WOLF!

buy links: Evernight – Amazon – ARe – BookStrand – Smashwords – Barnes & Noble – Kobo – iTunes

Lone-Wolf-evernightpublishing-JayAheer2016-finalimage amazon-bestseller-icon  BestsellerIcon100X100a

Gay Romance, Shifters, Paranormal, Erotic Romance
Word Count: 54,900
Heat Level: 4
Published By: Evernight Publishing

Shane River is the last of the Bad Oak boys to feel the pull of his animal trying to get out. Problem is, once he shifts, the wolf wants nothing more than to run far away… alone. He’s an Alpha Lone Wolf, and that means he doesn’t need a pack.

Tim Cooper thought his father was human. He wasn’t. He thought his werewolf mother could survive anything. She didn’t. He thought he’d never be able to shift, but he thought wrong, and the truth is more disturbing than anything he could’ve imagined.

When Shane finds Tim’s mother dying in the desert, he vows to track down the vicious wolf-coyote hybrids responsible for the attack. He doesn’t expect her son Tim: a hybrid who has no idea what he is. He doesn’t expect Tim’s animal to call to his wolf. And he certainly doesn’t expect to mate with a creature ravaged by grief, but when instinct howls, the wolf must obey.

***MPREG***

Chapter One:

Distant screams and the faint scent of blood woke him from his nap. Shane River stood up and slowly shook out his fur, ignoring the sandy dust that clung to his paws. He glanced around, uneasy with the silence. He’d tucked himself into the corner of a jumble of rocks, hoping to get some sleep before he continued hunting, but something had disturbed his rest.

Was I dreaming? He stared into the distance, ears cocked forward. The stars shone brightly enough to completely illuminate the landscape, but he didn’t bother with more than a cursory look. His nose told him everything he needed to know: the desert stretched around him like a barren moonscape, unbroken except for the low scrub and occasional vole scurrying for a hard-dug hole. His scruff rose, nose twitching as he caught the weight of blood on the wind.

Shane clamped his jaws shut on the howl that wanted to get out and followed the scent instead, heading west. The North American Council’s leader, Bardulf Forst, had sent him out here to find the wolf-coyote hybrid who’d attacked Shane’s brother Silas six months ago, but he’d lost the trail last week. Silas’s mate, Wulfgang Marrok, had handled the brunt of the attack, not that it mattered. He wasn’t blood related to the guy, but Shane would be out here hunting down the monsters regardless. Wulfgang was family.

And family and pack are all that matters. Shane was an Alpha, though, and that presented a big problem. He couldn’t stay with Forst Pack, not and remain sane. The pack already had two Alphas, Bardulf and his mate, Shane’s cousin Ryan. Shane didn’t want the responsibility, anyway. Lone Wolf, someone called him once, and now he knew it for truth. He loved his brother and cousins, loved making music in a band with them, but in-between times he needed to get the hell away from everyone. Touring together as Bad Oak was one thing. Living on top of each other when not on the road? No, thank you.

He stopped, nose flaring as he caught the scent again. North of him was the old rancher’s shack where he’d stored his human gear. The old man hadn’t said a word when he’d showed up in a beat-up pickup truck and holding a short note from Bardulf. He’d just nodded and taken Shane’s stuff inside, like having a rock star appear on his stoop was an everyday thing.

Shane snorted, still amused by the week-old encounter. Old man probably doesn’t even know I’m part of Bad Oak. Hell, I’d be surprised if he had a working television in that place. No way he’d know who I am. Shane had stripped and headed out in wolf form, not worrying about the details. The sooner he could get away from the guy, the better. Just standing within five feet of another person these days made him want to bite something, and not in a fun way.

Course, I looked like a homeless drifter. Holes in my jeans. Screwed up hair. Not surprising no one recognizes me out here in the middle of nowhere. He flicked his tail and kept going, needing to find the source of the screams that had woken him up, but his thoughts kept circling, like vultures over a corpse. Hanging out in Vegas was a disaster, and so was Maine, even though I was able to give Silas a hand. Still, I shouldn’t have expected to anything would be different out here in the desert.

He’d been feeling like crap since the first time he’d shifted. Everyone irritated him. Hell, he irritated himself. He needed to get his shit together, because his family was depending on him. And there was no way he could perform with the inside of his head all screwed up like this. His claws dug into the hard ground as he ran. He couldn’t even play piano anymore, not with the mental weight of an audience pressing at him, and that had been his go-to instrument since childhood. This nervous breakdown shit is a disaster for a musician. I’m better off out here on my own until I figure out what the fuck is going on with me. Just as well Bardulf sent me to hunt down the hybrids. I like being alone better than anything else right now.

He lifted his nose and added more speed. The desert blurred as he ran, heading towards the blood.

****

Tim Cooper frowned at his overheating engine. “Fucking piece of shit.” He ground his teeth together and resisted the urge to slam into the truck with a tire iron. Beating the crap out of an inanimate hunk of junk wouldn’t help a damn thing. He needed to get to his mother. His gut told him something really fucking bad had happened to her, and standing around, glaring at a fucked up engine wasn’t doing his nerves any good. “Shit.” He ran a hand over his face. “Shit on a shit stick. This is stupid. What the hell do I think I’m going to do even if I find her?”

He stared at the steam billowing out from the radiator, then turned on his heel. To the east stretched miles of empty desert. To his west, the faint glow of Flagstaff barely lit the horizon. Most of the city had capped their lights to cut down on light pollution for the stargazing community, so the glow was pretty dim. Normally, he thought that was pretty cool, but right now he didn’t give a flying fuck. He’d acquiesced to his mother’s need to run in her shifter form earlier in the day and had driven her out onto the desert prairie before his shift at the car shop, but now he regretted it.

Something is very wrong, his instincts told him. He ground his teeth together and jogged off the road, away from his truck. Not for the first time he cursed the loser sperm donor who’d violently impregnated his mother twenty-four years ago. The bastard had shitty DNA: Tim was human. Now, of all times, he wished he could shift into wolf form, too, and go after his mother more quickly, but he couldn’t. He’d never been able to shift, though he’d inherited just enough of his mother’s werewolf genes to heighten his senses. And right now, he sensed trouble. He picked up the pace, knowing it was going to be a long night, but what else could he do? He had no one to call for help. He and his mom lived alone, and they always moved on after a few months. They’d been nomads for most of his life. Normally, it didn’t bother him much, but lately he’d been feeling frustrated. Like something was missing.

An hour later, he staggered to a halt and bent over to catch his breath. He’d paced himself, but the longer he ran, the more his sense of doom screamed at him to hurry up. He lifted his face, wiping at the sweat on his forehead. The wind smelled wrong. The stars seemed dull. “Shit.” He took off again, skirting the edge of one of the many small canyons that cratered the dry prairie. It was half desert, half grassland, and a bitch and a half to run through with worry nagging at his gut.

The next time he paused, the stars had circled down lower, and his diaphragm hurt, but he sensed his mother just over the next bit of jumbled rock. He ran a little faster, ignoring the way his lungs screamed for mercy. He could breathe later. Right now he had to make sure she was okay. He stumbled around a low shrub, then halted, his mouth dry as sand. A naked man crouched over a still form on the ground, hands dark and wet.

Oh, God, no. “Get away from her!” Tim yelled as he sprinted the last few feet. His mother lay nude on the dirt, her stomach a mess of red meat. She blinked weakly, hands twitching. He lunged for the man, intent on choking the life out of him, but the guy backed off, hands raised.

“I didn’t do it,” he said quickly, and the note of despair in the guy’s voice sounded so weird that Tim involuntarily looked into his eyes. The moment their gazes met, thunder cracked through his body. He tripped, then turned his fall into an attack.

Tim, no, his mother whispered in his head.

What? But she’s gone, he thought, confused by the sound of her voice in his skull. And I’m losing my fucking mind. His hands closed on the guy’s shoulders. Dark eyes stared at him through shaggy blond hair. Tim’s palms skidded across the man’s collarbone, and then they were down on the ground. The man groaned as Tim’s knee caught him in the thigh.

“I didn’t hurt her,” he repeated. “I swear it. I found her on the ground like that. I was trying to help.”

Sudden pain choked off Tim’s voice before he could respond. His spine spasmed and he gasped, trying to shove his fingers around the man’s throat, but he couldn’t get them to work properly. To his shock, his mother let out a thin cry, like a bird that had fallen from the sky and couldn’t get up. The sound was so wrong he couldn’t help but freeze. He looked around, confused, then abandoned his anger when he saw her foot twitch. Now was not the time to kill a man who hadn’t even tried to defend himself. If his mother was alive, he needed to help her.

“Someone left her out here like that,” the man said, but Tim was already backing off.

“Mom.” He twisted and crawled across the dirt to her side. “Mom, Jesus. What happened?” His face was wet and he could hardly see. Everything looked blurry. He swallowed bile as he carefully cradled her cheeks.

“He didn’t do it.” Her lips moved, but no sound came out. It didn’t matter. Tim could understand her. “He helped me.” Her eyes rolled to the side, looking past him. “He’s yours.”

Tim touched her shoulder, ignoring the cramping in his gut. Gentle. Gotta be gentle. He smoothed back tangled hair. “What happened?”

“The coyotes caught up with me.” She grimaced, eyes going dim. “Don’t let them hurt you.”

Tim shook his head. “I’m good, Mom. I can take care of myself. You know that.” If only she’d let him take care of her. They should have moved two weeks ago. Every fucking time they found a nice place to settle, those fucking bastards caught up with them. What the hell did they want? He pressed his lips together. Now was not the time to bring that up again. She wouldn’t tell him, anyway. She’d kept the secret of their nomadic lifestyle for years.

She coughed, groaning as frothy bubbles welled up at her lips. “Shane found me. Offered me sanctuary.”

“Sanctuary?” What the hell did that mean? And who was Shane? “Mom—“

She shook her head, eyes focusing back on his face. “I love you, my perfect son. I’m glad you were born, even though it wasn’t my choice to have you.”

What? Tim’s scrubbed at his face. “Mom, don’t talk like that. I’m going to get you out of here. Just hang on.” He scrabbled in his pocket for his phone. Of course, when he pulled it out, there was no signal. They were in the middle of nowhere, after all. “Fuck!”

His mother didn’t seem to hear his frustration. She tilted her head, eyes darting around until they landed somewhere just past him.

“Mom, let me get you out of here.” He reached for her, intending to carry her out if he had to, but she shook her head. Her face was too damned pale. Too calm.

“Too late,” she whispered. Tim startled, then almost fell when the man he’d tackled a minute ago crouched down next to him. Rage welled up, but he shoved it away. His mother was staring at him again with that strange look she got sometimes.

“Mom, there’s no time,” he began to say, but she looked right through him.

“You still want it?” the guy asked.

Tim frowned.

His mother nodded.

“I need to take her hand,” the guy told him.

Tim clenched his teeth. Who was he to deny his mother what was obviously her last wish on this Earth? “Fine.” He pushed the word out, hard and fast, then watched as the man gently took his mother’s hand in his.

“Here we go,” the man said, almost under his breath. He closed his eyes and put his free hand on her wrist. His thumb moved over her pulse.

Tim gave him a sharp look, but the guy wasn’t paying any attention to him. His mother gasped, eyes going wide, and he almost shoved the man away, but then she smiled. He hadn’t seen such a look on her face in, well, ever.

“I can feel them,” she said as all the lines of pain in her expression abruptly eased away.

The man smiled faintly. “Yeah. Forst Pack is something else.” He adjusted his grip on her hand and took a deep breath. “Okay, here is the bond. You just have to reach out and grab it. I can’t do it for you because I’m not—” He broke off and took a deep breath. “I’m not bonded to them like that.”

Forst Pack? Bond? Tim narrowed his eyes. His mother was a wolf, but she had no pack, not anymore. Not for a long time. He ran his gaze over the man’s nude form: a large tattoo of a tree sprawled across his back, but there were no other identifying characteristics. He was fit, but not overly large. Muscles slid beneath his skin in a way that made Tim want to put his hands all over him. Hell. The guy’s body was almost too perfect. That meant only one thing. This man wasn’t human. Shifter. Probably a wolf, given his affinity with my mother. Which is just … shit. I can’t do a damned thing about it.

Shh. It’s okay. I’ve got you,” the man said, still as a statue.

His mother gasped, back arching. Tim grabbed her free arm, nearly falling down when energy tried to crackle through his fingers. It was like holding onto a live wire with three layers of rubber between him and the electricity. He could sense the wild flow, but it didn’t quite touch him. The man glanced at him, frowning, but then Tim’s mother sighed and he turned his attention back to her.

“Thank you,” she said to him, her fingers going limp.

The man sighed and put her hand down. “Rest easy now, and forevermore,” he murmured.

“Mom?” Tim shook her. “Mom? Hang on to me. Come on.” His heart gave a hard lurch when she looked at him, eyes fading.

“I love—” Her face went slack.

Tim stopped breathing. He tightened his grip on her wrist, but he could already feel her skin going cold. “Oh God.”

“I’m sorry.”

Tim swallowed, hard, trying to make sense of what just happened. “She’s gone. What the fuck?” Grief punched him in the gut. He clenched his fists so he wouldn’t hit the ground. “What the fuck?”

“She was dragged here. Tracks lead that way.” The man pointed.

Tim blinked, then looked east, towards more empty desert. “Fuck.” What the hell was he going to do now? He and his mom had been running since he was eight years old. He’d gone to a community college, worked a bunch of loser jobs, and still, they ran. Now he had no one.

“It’s not your fault.”

Tim flinched when the man touched his elbow. “Get the fuck away from me!”

The guy pressed his lips together, but he let his arm drop. “I think they were hunting her.”

No fucking kidding. They’ve been after her for the past several decades. Tim turned back to his mother’s body and ran his hand down her face, closing her eyes. She looked weird. Foreign. She didn’t look like his mother anymore. He’d have to bury her. He’d have to walk back to the truck and somehow get it towed. He’d have to quit his job and go somewhere else. Somewhere very far away so he didn’t do something he’d regret. Like chase down the fuckers who killed her and rip their intestines out with a pair of pliers.

“I’m going to track them.”

“What?” Tim whipped his head around. The man had a handful of dirt and was letting it trickle through his fingers. “Are you fucking crazy? They’ll kill you, too.”

The guy turned his head, and that same, weird, gut hurting thunder echoed through Tim again when their gazes met. “I’m here to find them. That’s what I was doing before I caught your mother’s scent. I don’t know how she got mixed up with them, but it doesn’t really matter. They’re going to regret messing with the Council.”

Council? Tim opened his mouth, but nothing came out. He had nothing to say. He took a deep breath and organized his thoughts. “Who the hell are you? And what did you do to my mother?”

The guy stood up. “I’m Shane. I’m a werewolf.” He cocked his head. “But you knew that.”

The rage Tim had forgotten about roared back into place. “You led them to her!”

Shane shook his head. “No. I was sleeping in wolf form when I caught the smell of blood on the wind. It led me here.” He kept his voice low and mild. “I had no idea what I’d find when the trail brought me to this place. I’m so sorry I was too late to help her.”

Tim forced himself to unclench his fists. “Why should I believe you?”

The guy shrugged. “I have no reason to lie.” His nostrils flared as the breeze picked up. “And you could smell it if I did, anyway, so I wouldn’t bother.”

Tim’s stomach hurt, but not so much that he didn’t know every word the guy said was true. He might not be a wolf like his mother, but his instincts were sharp. “Fuck.”

“Look. I need to track them, but you’re about to shift, and I have a feeling you don’t do it very often.” He lifted a shoulder. “I’ll stick around until I’m sure you’re okay.” He glanced at Tim’s mother. “I’m so sorry she’s gone. I really wish I could’ve got here faster.”

“I don’t shift. I’m not a wolf.” The pain in Tim’s stomach was spreading. He could barely get the words out.

Shane lifted an eyebrow. “Are you sure about that?”

Tim nodded. “My mother was a wolf, but my father wasn’t.” He growled out the words. “And before you ask, the answer is no. I have no idea who he was. My mother never spoke about him.”

“You’ve never shifted?” Shane’s eyes sparked with some emotion Tim couldn’t place.

“Never. And I’m not going to now,” Tim said. His gut cramped again, almost doubling him over. “Aw, fuck. Just what I need.” He coughed, trying to ease the spasm. What the hell had he eaten for dinner? He couldn’t remember. Maybe it was the loss of his mother that was tearing at his insides. Because of his faulty, half-breed status, they’d never had the metaphysical connection she claimed pack members experienced with each other, but maybe there’d been something there. Something he couldn’t feel until she was gone.

“Oh, shit,” Shane said.

Tim looked at him. The wolf was staring at him like he’d just sprouted a second head. “What the fuck is wrong with you? I’m the one who’s sick.” Sick with grief, and anger, and a whole shitload of bitterness. If ever there was a time he wanted to go back and beat the shit out of his mother’s asshole family it was now. She was gone, and she’d died practically alone, and it was their fucking fault for kicking her out of her pack. So what if they didn’t approve of him? Didn’t approve of her for being raped? It wasn’t liked she’d consented, but that didn’t matter according to their fucking self-righteous fundamentalist morality, did it? He was a stunted half-breed who couldn’t shift, so her so-called family had kicked them to the curb. And after they’d left, the stalking had begun. And so they’d run, for years and years, trying to keep one step ahead of the mysterious weirdos who were obsessed with his mother. He’d have stopped running and confronted the men tormenting them ages ago if she’d hadn’t begged him to lay low. No longer, though. I’m a grown man, and I’ve got nothing to lose. If he ever got his hands on the guys who did this to her…

“I don’t believe this,” Shane muttered, backing away.

Tim groaned as his train of thought shattered. The pain was back, and it was worse. He dropped to the ground, curling over his abdomen. His skin hurt like he’d been set on fire. Jesus, please, let this stop.

His bones cracked. His vision went white, then came back sharper. Harder. Smells he couldn’t make sense of bombarded him, and he whined, then growled as his skin split open. His mind fractured, and he thought he might be going insane, but then a cool hand touched his soul, soothing the fire that boiled through his veins.

“Let go. Let it happen,” a voice said.

“Let what go?” Tim tried to ask, but the dirt under his spine hurt like a motherfucker and he couldn’t form the words.

“You’re shifting. It’s okay.” The mind touching his felt like fresh snow.

Tim latched onto it with all his strength. He sensed shock, and then acceptance, and abruptly, the pain faded. He took a deep breath. He felt … strange. He stood up, but his balance was off. He lifted his head, and a lonely sound drifted out into the wind. The moment he heard it he knew.

“Fuck.”

He was no longer human.

Lone Wolf – Bad Oak Boys 4 – releasing March 30! #excerpt

Lone Wolf – releasing March 30, 2016!

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Gay Romance, Shifters, Paranormal, Erotic Romance
Word Count: 54,000
Heat Level: 4
Published By: Evernight Publishing

 

Shane River is the last of the Bad Oak boys to feel the pull of his animal trying to get out. Problem is, once he shifts, the wolf wants nothing more than to run far away… alone. He’s an Alpha Lone Wolf, and that means he doesn’t need a pack.

Tim Cooper thought his father was human. He wasn’t. He thought his werewolf mother could survive anything. She didn’t. He thought he’d never be able to shift, but he thought wrong, and the truth is more disturbing than anything he could’ve imagined.

When Shane finds Tim’s mother dying in the desert, he vows to track down the vicious wolf-coyote hybrids responsible for the attack. He doesn’t expect her son Tim: a hybrid who has no idea what he is. He doesn’t expect Tim’s animal to call to his wolf. And he certainly doesn’t expect to mate with a creature ravaged by grief, but when instinct howls, the wolf must obey.

***MPREG***

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Story Excerpt:

Tim wasn’t sure if he wanted to punch Shane, or kiss him. Grief filled him, making him feel like he’d swallowed a handful of stones, but that wasn’t what prompted him to turn around. The animal inside him scratched at his control, whining and growling. The terrifyingly seductive energy of the bond teased at his mind, pushing and pushing. His animal howled, and he broke into pieces. He reached for Shane, somehow knowing the wolf was his only hope of remaining sane. His hands closed over the smaller man’s biceps. “You don’t know shit about my loss.” He shook Shane until the musician’s head snapped back.

Shane growled and grabbed Tim’s face, hard, palms pressing into his jaw. “Stop it! I wasn’t trying to hurt you and you know it.” His thumb slipped over Tim’s lip.

Tim froze. The tips of Shane’s fingers dug into his cheekbones like a man holding onto the edge of a cliff. The musician’s brown eyes glittered, and all Tim could do was stare at this guy who’d awakened long-suppressed urges with a single touch. He didn’t date. He didn’t want a male lover. He didn’t want sex at all, but his cock filled, and just like that, they were kissing. Tim groaned, shoving a leg between Shane’s thighs. The other man’s erection rubbed against his hip. “I’m not fucking gay,” he growled, biting at Shane’s lips.

“You’re lying to yourself,” Shane said, directly into Tim’s ear. “I can feel it.”

“Fucking bond,” Tim snarled, biting at Shane’s throat. “It’s there. I can feel it poking at my skull.” He closed his teeth on Shane’s skin. The man smelled like the desert: windy and hot and spicy, with a hint of blood behind it all. He licked where his teeth pressed, shuddering as he struggled to control himself. He couldn’t think anymore. His cock fucking hurt. He rubbed up against hot skin, shivering when Shane’s prick bumped his. His gums ached. He needed more.

“Oh Jesus. If you bite me, there’s no going back,” Shane said. He had a hand on Tim’s hip, and it felt better than good. Better than anything he remembered. All the hurried, quick sex with women and hand-jobs with other guys in the back of shitty bars faded into insignificance in comparison to the feeling of Shane’s palm on his fucking side. “Blood makes everything worse, Timmeu,” Shane added.

That use of his true name sent Tim from lust into rage and then back again to lust so fast his brain short-circuited. He closed his teeth over Shane’s throat and bit down, all thought of control gone. Shane moaned, shoving closer. Somehow, his fingers were now in Tim’s hair, pulling down, hard enough to bring tears to his eyes, not that he minded. The moment Shane’s blood hit his tongue, everything went white. The bond flared in his head and Shane twisted, then bit him on the shoulder.

Blood for blood, Tim thought, and then his animal howled with joy even as pain punched him in the spine. He groaned as liquid pleasure mixed with agony rushed through him, unlike anything he’d ever experienced. He sensed Shane’s loneliness, and his joy when he made music. Something inside him yearned toward that joy. He’d never let himself fall in love, never wanted to be so vulnerable, but this man, this wolf, could tip him over into it if he allowed it. He growled, licking over the wound he’d caused, and then his brain blew wide open.

“Oh fuck,” Shane muttered, panting.

Tim didn’t understand how Shane could speak. His animal snarled in his head, and then Shane did something with the bond, weaving energy into him. He couldn’t stop it. He didn’t want to stop it. Shane’s presence felt like everything he’d never had in his life: strong and balanced and fucking beautiful. “What did you do to me?”

“Not me,” Shane sent, hips still thrusting. “Not only me.”

Heat rushed down Tim’s spine, and he shoved until they were on the ground. Shane opened his legs and Tim thrust against him, ignoring the dirt and the rising sun shining in his eyes. He was almost there, but then Shane’s mind touched him, and flashes of his past hit Tim’s consciousness too fast for him to make sense of any it. His animal resisted, not liking this intimacy, but the pull was too strong. “I don’t want to bond,” he whispered, knowing it was a lie even as the words dropped from his lips. He bit Shane again.