$0.99 special at Evernight–Alpha Shaman!

When instinct howls, the wolf must obey.

ALPHA SHAMAN is only $0.99 at Evernight for a limited time!

 

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Gay Romance, Shifters, Paranormal, Erotic Romance
Word Count: 56,260
Heat Level: 4
Published By: Evernight Publishing

The world isn’t ready for a rock star werewolf, but Josh Oakley can’t stop biology. When his brother sends sexy wolf shaman Gerwulf to help him, instinct is too mild a word for how he feels. Gerwulf calls to his animal in a way that defies logic.

Gerwulf knows Josh is his mate the moment they meet, but he doesn’t like guys and he doesn’t intend to bond with anyone. He’ll help the musician control his wolf, but getting too close isn’t his intention. Besides, he wouldn’t know what to do with a man in his bed.

Of course, shifters can’t dodge fate—a crisis forces Josh and Gerwulf to accept their connection just in time to save Forst Pack from an old enemy. When biology ties them together beyond even a mating bond, will they be able to move past their fear and into a future that holds more than they ever expected?

***MPREG***

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

Story Excerpt:

Josh needed to taste Gerwulf, right the fuck now. He’d gone from confusion over his intense attraction to this wolf and straight into need. It felt right to desire this man. It felt like that unattainable connection he’d been searching for, all through the years of writing love songs and fucking random men and women on the road. “I’m going to kiss you, Gerwulf. You don’t get to say no.” His wolf growled, wanting him to get on with it. Mate.

Gerwulf stared at him, eyes dark as old whiskey. “You shouldn’t be doing this, especially not now. Your instinct to shift is confusing your libido.” He reached out and grabbed Josh’s arms, pressing his fingers into his skin as if he was afraid Josh was going to take off.

Confusing me? As if. I’m not the one hanging on for dear life. This guy is mine, even if he doesn’t realize it yet. Josh let himself enjoy the pain of the Shaman’s grip. He hadn’t expected to feel attraction like this, ever. Hell, he hadn’t expected to shift into a wolf either, but the moment Gerwulf showed up at his door, his desire for both things had grown stronger and stronger. “Your hands tell me a different story, Gerwulf.” He moved in and pressed his aching cock right into the Shaman’s hip. The man was built solid. Josh ground against him, desperate to feel a response.

“We shouldn’t be doing this,” Gerwulf said, voice cracking on the last word. His fingers flexed on Josh’s biceps. A minute tremble told Josh the Shaman wasn’t as unaffected as he tried to appear. Instead of pushing him away, Gerwulf pulled him closer.

Josh smiled, all teeth. “I’m going to shift, I promise you, but you need to let me in first.” He inhaled, savoring the warm spice scent that drifted from Gerwulf’s skin. “You smell fucking fantastic.” He leaned in and put his lips on Gerwulf’s neck. God, he wanted to bite him. Was this what it had been like for his brother? Maybe being a wolf wouldn’t be so bad.

Gerwulf trembled and dug his fingers into Josh’s arms. “I’m a Shaman. I’ll be Forst Pack’s Alpha-Shaman someday. Your wolf recognizes my power. That’s all this is.”

My cock recognizes your extreme sexiness. Josh laughed, going along with Gerwulf’s delusion that he was doing this because of some paranormal status woo-woo. “Yeah, whatever.”

Gerwulf opened his legs slightly, slotting them together more closely. “You don’t understand what’s happening.” He sounded disturbed.

Josh forced himself to lean back. He wanted to take a bite out of this man, God help him, but he didn’t want to hurt him. “You’ve never been with a guy before, have you?”

“What?” Gerwulf’s eyes widened, and he shook his head. “How did you know that?” He moved his hands to Josh’s wrists, trapping his arms against his flanks, as if that would hold him off. “Not that it matters. That’s not what this is about.”

“Don’t worry. It’s not as scary as you think.” Josh leaned in again, nosing along Gerwulf’s jaw. He took his time. This particular moment would never happen again. “We have the same plumbing. The same needs.” He wanted their first kiss to be explosive. He shoved down the niggling worry in his mind that told him he’d forgotten something extremely important. His wolf was happy. His dick was happy. Gerwulf wasn’t pulling away. What could be wrong? He’d deal with the shifting problem later. “It doesn’t have to mean anything, Gerwulf. It’s not like we’re getting married.”

“You have no idea what kind of fire you’re playing with,” Gerwulf said, hips jerking slightly. His erection, still trapped in his pants, slid across Josh’s nude cock, making them both moan.

“You’re playing with the same flame, Shaman,” Josh said, once he’d gotten control of his voice back. His dick had never before been so hard just from light foreplay.

Gerwulf flushed. “Nothing about this is normal.”

Josh groaned. “You’re sexy and hot. This is perfectly normal. You may not have fucked a man before, but I have. I’m bi and totally fine with it.” He paused. “Don’t worry. I won’t hurt you. I don’t want to scare you off.”

“For Christ’s sake.” Gerwulf let out an explosive breath. “This has everything to do with you being a wolf, Josh. Listen to me.” He shook Josh slightly. “I’m an Alpha-Shaman. You’re a Beta. Our wolves are confusing power and status with sex.”

Josh blinked, trying to force his arousal-soaked brain to function. “You think I want you because you’re a Shaman?” He chuckled. “No.”

“Yes,” Gerwulf insisted.

His mouth says one thing, but his body says another. Josh wrestled with himself. He would not force Gerwulf to do anything he truly didn’t want to do, despite what he’d said. But I want one good kiss before I step away.

“Fuck this.” He leaned in and kissed Gerwulf. Immediately, the Shaman opened his mouth, letting Josh’s tongue inside. “Christ, you taste like the forest,” Josh said, shuddering. He suckled Gerwulf’s bottom lip, then dove in again. “I can’t get enough of you.” His mind felt white-hot and crazy, with his wolf howling and growling. His cock was so stiff it hurt. He wanted to take Gerwulf up against the wall. He wanted to bite him and mark him and not look back.

Rainbow Book Reviews loved Gunpoint!

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Rainbow Book Reviews gave GUNPOINT 5 stars!

“This was fascinating, intriguing, and absolutely phenomenal. The author’s world is one that has taken traditional shifter lore, turned it upside down and inside out, and then put it back together for my enjoyment. I’m totally dying for the next book so I can explore more about why the falcons in the US have been so decimated since the last shifter war hundreds of years ago, and I want to discover their old stories about the War Chiefs, etc. A marvelous read!”

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

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Gay Romance, Shifters, Suspense, Erotic Romance
Word Count: 39,000
Heat Level: 4
Published By: Evernight Publishing

 

Soul-bruised and bitter, Charlie left the military for peaceful solitude. When he’s mugged at gunpoint, his isolation is shattered, because the guy with the weapon is his mate, and Charlie’s falcon insists on truth: the other half of his soul is a desperate man who doesn’t know he’s a shifter.

Warren has no money for rent, his sister’s ex beat her bloody, and he’s working double shifts to survive. He thought his life couldn’t get any worse, but then he mugs an ex-soldier who somehow turns the tables and offers him something impossible: hope.

Of course, nothing is that simple, and Charlie’s resistance to their bond sabotages their relationship before it really begins. Warren can handle hardship, but now his enemies are bigger than the bully next door, and he’s broken the darkest taboo of the Sky Hunter falcons. Only Charlie can save him, but can a damaged ex-soldier save himself, too?

 

 

GUNPOINT is a #bestseller!

Thank you, dear readers, for enjoying my newest shifter story. 😀

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

  epeditorsesal1samazon-bestseller-iconBestsellerIcon100X100

Gay Romance, Shifters, Suspense, Erotic Romance
Word Count: 39,000
Heat Level: 4
Published By: Evernight Publishing

Scroll down for an excerpt.

Soul-bruised and bitter, Charlie left the military for peaceful solitude. When he’s mugged at gunpoint, his isolation is shattered, because the guy with the weapon is his mate, and Charlie’s falcon insists on truth: the other half of his soul is a desperate man who doesn’t know he’s a shifter.

Warren has no money for rent, his sister’s ex beat her bloody, and he’s working double shifts to survive. He thought his life couldn’t get any worse, but then he mugs an ex-soldier who somehow turns the tables and offers him something impossible: hope.

Of course, nothing is that simple, and Charlie’s resistance to their bond sabotages their relationship before it really begins. Warren can handle hardship, but now his enemies are bigger than the bully next door, and he’s broken the darkest taboo of the Sky Hunter falcons. Only Charlie can save him, but can a damaged ex-soldier save himself, too?

 

 

Story Excerpt:

“I told you not to move. Are you paying attention?”

Wait… Warren frowned. He recognized that voice. “I know you.”

“You have a good memory, Warren.” The cold point slid across his neck and settled on the curve of his shoulder. “Do you remember who I am yet?”

Warren swallowed, but the lump of nerves in his throat didn’t budge. “Charlie.” God help him. He inhaled, wondering what the fuck was wrong with him that he had a hard-on in this situation. I’m finally cracking from all the stress.

“Very good.” The metal weight lifted as Charlie stepped in front of Warren.

Warren stared at the black gun nestled comfortably in Charlie’s hand. Fuck. That looks real.

“Yeah, unlike your toy, this is a real weapon.” Charlie eased the safety down and pointed it at Warren’s thigh. “You’ll feel a hell of a lot more than a splat of water if someone shoots you with it.”

Warren shuddered. He was turned on and more than a little bit nervous. “You wouldn’t really shoot me, would you?” He forced himself to look Charlie in the eyes. “I’m sorry I was such an idiot the other night. I was desperate, but that doesn’t excuse what I tried to do.” From the expression on Charlie’s face, Warren wasn’t sure his apology did much good. Charlie’s cold blue eyes stared back at him with no hint of the man’s thoughts. “I would never do anything like that again.”

“Sorry.” Charlie finally snorted. “Sorry doesn’t even begin to cover what I want from you.” He pursed his lips. The muzzle of his gun stayed fixed on Warren’s thigh.

Warren didn’t know a damn thing about guns, but he knew it would hurt if that thing shot him. Even so, he couldn’t keep his gaze from drifting down Charlie’s body. The man wore tight jeans, black boots, and a t-shirt that hugged every muscle in his torso. Warren wanted to put his hands on that chest, gun be damned. He wanted more than the desperate existence he seemed to be mired in, and had been ever since his parents died. He wanted Charlie. He waited a moment to see if the thought of being attracted to another guy bothered him, but all he felt was a sense of urgency. He needed to adjust his erection, but he had a feeling Charlie wouldn’t take it all that well if he reached down. He gritted his teeth and didn’t move. “What do you want from me?” His voice came out rough.

“On your knees.” Charlie gestured with the gun’s point.

Jesus. Warren slid to the ground and looked up. Charlie’s face had gone taut. “Please don’t shoot me.” Warren’s hands clenched into fists when Charlie tightened his finger on the trigger. After what they’d done together in the woods last night, Warren would’ve never expected this. Never. Charlie just hadn’t seemed the type. But you never know when someone might snap.

“You think I’m going to shoot you?” Charlie raised an eyebrow.

“I have no idea what you’re going to do,” Warren replied shakily. He wasn’t sure if he was more frightened or aroused. His erection pressed uncomfortably against the zipper of his jeans.

“Undo my pants,” Charlie said.

Warren froze. “What?” Was he serious? He looked at Charlie’s groin. His cock was long and thick and obviously hard behind the denim. He’d been trying not to stare, but that was pretty difficult from this position. He swallowed nervously.

“You heard me. Don’t fuck around, Warren. I am totally out of patience.” Charlie put the gun to Warren’s forehead. He didn’t look like he was in the mood for more talking. He looked like a man on the edge of losing his temper.

Warren’s heart pounded. Was it rape if what he was being forced to do was something he actually wanted? “I don’t—” He broke off sweating. His hands trembled as he raised them. Don’t be a pussy, he told himself. His own erection swelled even more, and the position he was in didn’t make his arousal particularly comfortable.

“Wait.” Charlie let out a soft breath when Warren’s fingers reached his zipper. “Stop.”

Confused, Warren slid a finger inside Charlie’s waistband. The gun still pressed into his forehead. “I don’t know what you want from me,” he whispered, not sure if he was disappointed or angry.

Charlie lifted the gun away and pointed it at the ground. His finger tightened on the trigger, and the weapon clicked. “It’s empty.” His eyes were completely dark now. Dark and feral. “I would never hurt you.”

Warren had never seen anything so beautiful as those eyes, but that didn’t change what had just happened. He frowned as the first trickle of rage slid down his spine. “You fucking threatened me with an empty gun?” He clenched the waistband of Charlie’s pants with his fingers. “That’s so frigging messed up.” He told himself to get the fuck up, but his body wasn’t listening. I should punch him, he thought, but Charlie hadn’t moved, either. Warren slid his fingers deeper into Charlie’s pants. When the tips of his fingers touched Charlie’s cock, he sighed. “Fuck.”

Charlie trembled. “Yeah, that about sums it up.”

Warren undid the button, then drew the zipper down. “I want to blow you. You’re an asshole, but I still want this.” He licked his lips, ignoring Charlie as the older man dismantled the weapon and put the pieces on the table. Warren hardly cared. He felt like he stood on the edge of a precipice, prepared to jump. All his worries about his sister and her bastard ex, the rent, and his job faded to nothing. Some wild instinct stuck inside his bones told him to take the leap, and for once in his life, Warren was going to fly. Instinct was never a good way to make decisions—the disaster with the mugging had taught him that—but he didn’t give a shit right now. He wanted Charlie.

“It’s only fair that you return the favor,” Charlie said, startling him. “I went on my knees for you last night.”

Warren looked up. Charlie’s teeth were clenched.

“Suck it.”

Gunpoint #NewRelease!

Gunpoint is on sale at Evernight!

buy links: EvernightAmazon – AReBookStrand

  epeditorsesal1s

Gay Romance, Shifters, Suspense, Erotic Romance
Word Count: 39,000
Heat Level: 4
Published By: Evernight Publishing

Soul-bruised and bitter, Charlie left the military for peaceful solitude. When he’s mugged at gunpoint, his isolation is shattered, because the guy with the weapon is his mate, and Charlie’s falcon insists on truth: the other half of his soul is a desperate man who doesn’t know he’s a shifter.

Warren has no money for rent, his sister’s ex beat her bloody, and he’s working double shifts to survive. He thought his life couldn’t get any worse, but then he mugs an ex-soldier who somehow turns the tables and offers him something impossible: hope.

Of course, nothing is that simple, and Charlie’s resistance to their bond sabotages their relationship before it really begins. Warren can handle hardship, but now his enemies are bigger than the bully next door, and he’s broken the darkest taboo of the Sky Hunter falcons. Only Charlie can save him, but can a damaged ex-soldier save himself, too?

 

Excerpt:

“I told you not to move. Are you paying attention?”

Wait… Warren frowned. He recognized that voice. “I know you.”

“You have a good memory, Warren.” The cold point slid across his neck and settled on the curve of his shoulder. “Do you remember who I am yet?”

Warren swallowed, but the lump of nerves in his throat didn’t budge. “Charlie.” God help him. He inhaled, wondering what the fuck was wrong with him that he had a hard-on in this situation. I’m finally cracking from all the stress.

“Very good.” The metal weight lifted as Charlie stepped in front of Warren.

Warren stared at the black gun nestled comfortably in Charlie’s hand. Fuck. That looks real.

“Yeah, unlike your toy, this is a real weapon.” Charlie eased the safety down and pointed it at Warren’s thigh. “You’ll feel a hell of a lot more than a splat of water if someone shoots you with it.”

Warren shuddered. He was turned on and more than a little bit nervous. “You wouldn’t really shoot me, would you?” He forced himself to look Charlie in the eyes. “I’m sorry I was such an idiot the other night. I was desperate, but that doesn’t excuse what I tried to do.” From the expression on Charlie’s face, Warren wasn’t sure his apology did much good. Charlie’s cold blue eyes stared back at him with no hint of the man’s thoughts. “I would never do anything like that again.”

“Sorry.” Charlie finally snorted. “Sorry doesn’t even begin to cover what I want from you.” He pursed his lips. The muzzle of his gun stayed fixed on Warren’s thigh.

Warren didn’t know a damn thing about guns, but he knew it would hurt if that thing shot him. Even so, he couldn’t keep his gaze from drifting down Charlie’s body. The man wore tight jeans, black boots, and a t-shirt that hugged every muscle in his torso. Warren wanted to put his hands on that chest, gun be damned. He wanted more than the desperate existence he seemed to be mired in, and had been ever since his parents died. He wanted Charlie. He waited a moment to see if the thought of being attracted to another guy bothered him, but all he felt was a sense of urgency. He needed to adjust his erection, but he had a feeling Charlie wouldn’t take it all that well if he reached down. He gritted his teeth and didn’t move. “What do you want from me?” His voice came out rough.

“On your knees.” Charlie gestured with the gun’s point.

Jesus. Warren slid to the ground and looked up. Charlie’s face had gone taut. “Please don’t shoot me.” Warren’s hands clenched into fists when Charlie tightened his finger on the trigger. After what they’d done together in the woods last night, Warren would’ve never expected this. Never. Charlie just hadn’t seemed the type. But you never know when someone might snap.

“You think I’m going to shoot you?” Charlie raised an eyebrow.

“I have no idea what you’re going to do,” Warren replied shakily. He wasn’t sure if he was more frightened or aroused. His erection pressed uncomfortably against the zipper of his jeans.

“Undo my pants,” Charlie said.

Warren froze. “What?” Was he serious? He looked at Charlie’s groin. His cock was long and thick and obviously hard behind the denim. He’d been trying not to stare, but that was pretty difficult from this position. He swallowed nervously.

“You heard me. Don’t fuck around, Warren. I am totally out of patience.” Charlie put the gun to Warren’s forehead. He didn’t look like he was in the mood for more talking. He looked like a man on the edge of losing his temper.

Warren’s heart pounded. Was it rape if what he was being forced to do was something he actually wanted? “I don’t—” He broke off sweating. His hands trembled as he raised them. Don’t be a pussy, he told himself. His own erection swelled even more, and the position he was in didn’t make his arousal particularly comfortable.

“Wait.” Charlie let out a soft breath when Warren’s fingers reached his zipper. “Stop.”

Confused, Warren slid a finger inside Charlie’s waistband. The gun still pressed into his forehead. “I don’t know what you want from me,” he whispered, not sure if he was disappointed or angry.

Charlie lifted the gun away and pointed it at the ground. His finger tightened on the trigger, and the weapon clicked. “It’s empty.” His eyes were completely dark now. Dark and feral. “I would never hurt you.”

Warren had never seen anything so beautiful as those eyes, but that didn’t change what had just happened. He frowned as the first trickle of rage slid down his spine. “You fucking threatened me with an empty gun?” He clenched the waistband of Charlie’s pants with his fingers. “That’s so frigging messed up.” He told himself to get the fuck up, but his body wasn’t listening. I should punch him, he thought, but Charlie hadn’t moved, either. Warren slid his fingers deeper into Charlie’s pants. When the tips of his fingers touched Charlie’s cock, he sighed. “Fuck.”

Charlie trembled. “Yeah, that about sums it up.”

Warren undid the button, then drew the zipper down. “I want to blow you. You’re an asshole, but I still want this.” He licked his lips, ignoring Charlie as the older man dismantled the weapon and put the pieces on the table. Warren hardly cared. He felt like he stood on the edge of a precipice, prepared to jump. All his worries about his sister and her bastard ex, the rent, and his job faded to nothing. Some wild instinct stuck inside his bones told him to take the leap, and for once in his life, Warren was going to fly. Instinct was never a good way to make decisions—the disaster with the mugging had taught him that—but he didn’t give a shit right now. He wanted Charlie.

“It’s only fair that you return the favor,” Charlie said, startling him. “I went on my knees for you last night.”

Warren looked up. Charlie’s teeth were clenched.

“Suck it.”

Gunpoint Cover Reveal!

The Sky Hunters are almost extinct…

Preorder at Amazon!

  epeditorsesal1s

After the Great War, the last of the falcon shifters scattered to survive.

Charlie Gutzman: ex-soldier, war chief, loner. Stats: blond hair, blue eyes, haunted by his past.

Warren Johnson: brother, orphan, a desperate man. Stats: dark brown hair, grey eyes, determined to survive everything life throws at him.

With the falcon shifters almost extinct, who is left to protect the weak? What darkness haunts the ones who do what it takes to survive?

GUNPOINT – releasing August 2016!

Soul-bruised and bitter, Charlie left the military for peaceful solitude. When he’s mugged at gunpoint, his isolation is shattered, because the guy with the weapon is his mate, and Charlie’s falcon insists on truth: the other half of his soul is a desperate man who doesn’t know he’s a shifter.

Warren has no money for rent, his sister’s ex beat her bloody, and he’s working double shifts to survive. He thought his life couldn’t get any worse, but then he mugs an ex-soldier who somehow turns the tables and offers him something impossible: hope.

Of course, nothing is that simple, and Charlie’s resistance to their bond sabotages their relationship before it really begins. Warren can handle hardship, but now his enemies are bigger than the bully next door, and he’s broken the darkest taboo of the Sky Hunter falcons. Only Charlie can save him, but can a damaged ex-soldier save himself, too?

 

Excerpt:

“I told you not to move. Are you paying attention?”

Wait… Warren frowned. He recognized that voice. “I know you.”

“You have a good memory, Warren.” The cold point slid across his neck and settled on the curve of his shoulder. “Do you remember who I am yet?”

Warren swallowed, but the lump of nerves in his throat didn’t budge. “Charlie.” God help him. He inhaled, wondering what the fuck was wrong with him that he had a hard-on in this situation. I’m finally cracking from all the stress.

“Very good.” The metal weight lifted as Charlie stepped in front of Warren.

Warren stared at the black gun nestled comfortably in Charlie’s hand. Fuck. That looks real.

“Yeah, unlike your toy, this is a real weapon.” Charlie eased the safety down and pointed it at Warren’s thigh. “You’ll feel a hell of a lot more than a splat of water if someone shoots you with it.”

Warren shuddered. He was turned on and more than a little bit nervous. “You wouldn’t really shoot me, would you?” He forced himself to look Charlie in the eyes. “I’m sorry I was such an idiot the other night. I was desperate, but that doesn’t excuse what I tried to do.” From the expression on Charlie’s face, Warren wasn’t sure his apology did much good. Charlie’s cold blue eyes stared back at him with no hint of the man’s thoughts. “I would never do anything like that again.”

“Sorry.” Charlie finally snorted. “Sorry doesn’t even begin to cover what I want from you.” He pursed his lips. The muzzle of his gun stayed fixed on Warren’s thigh.

Warren didn’t know a damn thing about guns, but he knew it would hurt if that thing shot him. Even so, he couldn’t keep his gaze from drifting down Charlie’s body. The man wore tight jeans, black boots, and a t-shirt that hugged every muscle in his torso. Warren wanted to put his hands on that chest, gun be damned. He wanted more than the desperate existence he seemed to be mired in, and had been ever since his parents died. He wanted Charlie. He waited a moment to see if the thought of being attracted to another guy bothered him, but all he felt was a sense of urgency. He needed to adjust his erection, but he had a feeling Charlie wouldn’t take it all that well if he reached down. He gritted his teeth and didn’t move. “What do you want from me?” His voice came out rough.

“On your knees.” Charlie gestured with the gun’s point.

Jesus. Warren slid to the ground and looked up. Charlie’s face had gone taut. “Please don’t shoot me.” Warren’s hands clenched into fists when Charlie tightened his finger on the trigger. After what they’d done together in the woods last night, Warren would’ve never expected this. Never. Charlie just hadn’t seemed the type. But you never know when someone might snap.

“You think I’m going to shoot you?” Charlie raised an eyebrow.

“I have no idea what you’re going to do,” Warren replied shakily. He wasn’t sure if he was more frightened or aroused. His erection pressed uncomfortably against the zipper of his jeans.

“Undo my pants,” Charlie said.

Warren froze. “What?” Was he serious? He looked at Charlie’s groin. His cock was long and thick and obviously hard behind the denim. He’d been trying not to stare, but that was pretty difficult from this position. He swallowed nervously.

“You heard me. Don’t fuck around, Warren. I am totally out of patience.” Charlie put the gun to Warren’s forehead. He didn’t look like he was in the mood for more talking. He looked like a man on the edge of losing his temper.

Warren’s heart pounded. Was it rape if what he was being forced to do was something he actually wanted? “I don’t—” He broke off sweating. His hands trembled as he raised them. Don’t be a pussy, he told himself. His own erection swelled even more, and the position he was in didn’t make his arousal particularly comfortable.

“Wait.” Charlie let out a soft breath when Warren’s fingers reached his zipper. “Stop.”

Confused, Warren slid a finger inside Charlie’s waistband. The gun still pressed into his forehead. “I don’t know what you want from me,” he whispered, not sure if he was disappointed or angry.

Charlie lifted the gun away and pointed it at the ground. His finger tightened on the trigger, and the weapon clicked. “It’s empty.” His eyes were completely dark now. Dark and feral. “I would never hurt you.”

Warren had never seen anything so beautiful as those eyes, but that didn’t change what had just happened. He frowned as the first trickle of rage slid down his spine. “You fucking threatened me with an empty gun?” He clenched the waistband of Charlie’s pants with his fingers. “That’s so frigging messed up.” He told himself to get the fuck up, but his body wasn’t listening. I should punch him, he thought, but Charlie hadn’t moved, either. Warren slid his fingers deeper into Charlie’s pants. When the tips of his fingers touched Charlie’s cock, he sighed. “Fuck.”

Charlie trembled. “Yeah, that about sums it up.”

Warren undid the button, then drew the zipper down. “I want to blow you. You’re an asshole, but I still want this.” He licked his lips, ignoring Charlie as the older man dismantled the weapon and put the pieces on the table. Warren hardly cared. He felt like he stood on the edge of a precipice, prepared to jump. All his worries about his sister and her bastard ex, the rent, and his job faded to nothing. Some wild instinct stuck inside his bones told him to take the leap, and for once in his life, Warren was going to fly. Instinct was never a good way to make decisions—the disaster with the mugging had taught him that—but he didn’t give a shit right now. He wanted Charlie.

“It’s only fair that you return the favor,” Charlie said, startling him. “I went on my knees for you last night.”

Warren looked up. Charlie’s teeth were clenched.

“Suck it.”

Gunpoint #excerpt!

The Sky Hunters are almost extinct…

  epeditorsesal1s

After the Great War, the last of the falcon shifters scattered to survive.

Charlie Gutzman: ex-soldier, war chief, loner. Stats: blond hair, blue eyes, haunted by his past.

Warren Johnson: brother, orphan, a desperate man. Stats: dark brown hair, grey eyes, determined to survive everything life throws at him.

With the falcon shifters almost extinct, who is left to protect the weak? What darkness haunts the ones who do what it takes to survive?

GUNPOINT – releasing August 2016!

Soul-bruised and bitter, Charlie left the military for peaceful solitude. When he’s mugged at gunpoint, his isolation is shattered, because the guy with the weapon is his mate, and Charlie’s falcon insists on truth: the other half of his soul is a desperate man who doesn’t know he’s a shifter.

Warren has no money for rent, his sister’s ex beat her bloody, and he’s working double shifts to survive. He thought his life couldn’t get any worse, but then he mugs an ex-soldier who somehow turns the tables and offers him something impossible: hope.

Of course, nothing is that simple, and Charlie’s resistance to their bond sabotages their relationship before it really begins. Warren can handle hardship, but now his enemies are bigger than the bully next door, and he’s broken the darkest taboo of the Sky Hunter falcons. Only Charlie can save him, but can a damaged ex-soldier save himself, too?

 

Excerpt:

“I told you not to move. Are you paying attention?”

Wait… Warren frowned. He recognized that voice. “I know you.”

“You have a good memory, Warren.” The cold point slid across his neck and settled on the curve of his shoulder. “Do you remember who I am yet?”

Warren swallowed, but the lump of nerves in his throat didn’t budge. “Charlie.” God help him. He inhaled, wondering what the fuck was wrong with him that he had a hard-on in this situation. I’m finally cracking from all the stress.

“Very good.” The metal weight lifted as Charlie stepped in front of Warren.

Warren stared at the black gun nestled comfortably in Charlie’s hand. Fuck. That looks real.

“Yeah, unlike your toy, this is a real weapon.” Charlie eased the safety down and pointed it at Warren’s thigh. “You’ll feel a hell of a lot more than a splat of water if someone shoots you with it.”

Warren shuddered. He was turned on and more than a little bit nervous. “You wouldn’t really shoot me, would you?” He forced himself to look Charlie in the eyes. “I’m sorry I was such an idiot the other night. I was desperate, but that doesn’t excuse what I tried to do.” From the expression on Charlie’s face, Warren wasn’t sure his apology did much good. Charlie’s cold blue eyes stared back at him with no hint of the man’s thoughts. “I would never do anything like that again.”

“Sorry.” Charlie finally snorted. “Sorry doesn’t even begin to cover what I want from you.” He pursed his lips. The muzzle of his gun stayed fixed on Warren’s thigh.

Warren didn’t know a damn thing about guns, but he knew it would hurt if that thing shot him. Even so, he couldn’t keep his gaze from drifting down Charlie’s body. The man wore tight jeans, black boots, and a t-shirt that hugged every muscle in his torso. Warren wanted to put his hands on that chest, gun be damned. He wanted more than the desperate existence he seemed to be mired in, and had been ever since his parents died. He wanted Charlie. He waited a moment to see if the thought of being attracted to another guy bothered him, but all he felt was a sense of urgency. He needed to adjust his erection, but he had a feeling Charlie wouldn’t take it all that well if he reached down. He gritted his teeth and didn’t move. “What do you want from me?” His voice came out rough.

“On your knees.” Charlie gestured with the gun’s point.

Jesus. Warren slid to the ground and looked up. Charlie’s face had gone taut. “Please don’t shoot me.” Warren’s hands clenched into fists when Charlie tightened his finger on the trigger. After what they’d done together in the woods last night, Warren would’ve never expected this. Never. Charlie just hadn’t seemed the type. But you never know when someone might snap.

“You think I’m going to shoot you?” Charlie raised an eyebrow.

“I have no idea what you’re going to do,” Warren replied shakily. He wasn’t sure if he was more frightened or aroused. His erection pressed uncomfortably against the zipper of his jeans.

“Undo my pants,” Charlie said.

Warren froze. “What?” Was he serious? He looked at Charlie’s groin. His cock was long and thick and obviously hard behind the denim. He’d been trying not to stare, but that was pretty difficult from this position. He swallowed nervously.

“You heard me. Don’t fuck around, Warren. I am totally out of patience.” Charlie put the gun to Warren’s forehead. He didn’t look like he was in the mood for more talking. He looked like a man on the edge of losing his temper.

Warren’s heart pounded. Was it rape if what he was being forced to do was something he actually wanted? “I don’t—” He broke off sweating. His hands trembled as he raised them. Don’t be a pussy, he told himself. His own erection swelled even more, and the position he was in didn’t make his arousal particularly comfortable.

“Wait.” Charlie let out a soft breath when Warren’s fingers reached his zipper. “Stop.”

Confused, Warren slid a finger inside Charlie’s waistband. The gun still pressed into his forehead. “I don’t know what you want from me,” he whispered, not sure if he was disappointed or angry.

Charlie lifted the gun away and pointed it at the ground. His finger tightened on the trigger, and the weapon clicked. “It’s empty.” His eyes were completely dark now. Dark and feral. “I would never hurt you.”

Warren had never seen anything so beautiful as those eyes, but that didn’t change what had just happened. He frowned as the first trickle of rage slid down his spine. “You fucking threatened me with an empty gun?” He clenched the waistband of Charlie’s pants with his fingers. “That’s so frigging messed up.” He told himself to get the fuck up, but his body wasn’t listening. I should punch him, he thought, but Charlie hadn’t moved, either. Warren slid his fingers deeper into Charlie’s pants. When the tips of his fingers touched Charlie’s cock, he sighed. “Fuck.”

Charlie trembled. “Yeah, that about sums it up.”

Warren undid the button, then drew the zipper down. “I want to blow you. You’re an asshole, but I still want this.” He licked his lips, ignoring Charlie as the older man dismantled the weapon and put the pieces on the table. Warren hardly cared. He felt like he stood on the edge of a precipice, prepared to jump. All his worries about his sister and her bastard ex, the rent, and his job faded to nothing. Some wild instinct stuck inside his bones told him to take the leap, and for once in his life, Warren was going to fly. Instinct was never a good way to make decisions—the disaster with the mugging had taught him that—but he didn’t give a shit right now. He wanted Charlie.

“It’s only fair that you return the favor,” Charlie said, startling him. “I went on my knees for you last night.”

Warren looked up. Charlie’s teeth were clenched.

“Suck it.”

Gunpoint Coming Soon!

The Sky Hunters are almost extinct…

After the Great War, the last of the falcon shifters scattered to survive.

Charlie Gutzman: ex-soldier, war chief, loner. Stats: blond hair, blue eyes, haunted by his past.

Warren Johnson: brother, orphan, a desperate man. Stats: dark brown hair, grey eyes, determined to survive everything life throws at him.

With the falcon shifters almost extinct, who is left to protect the weak? What darkness haunts the ones who do what it takes to survive?

GUNPOINT – releasing August 2016!

Soul-bruised and bitter, Charlie left the military for peaceful solitude. When he’s mugged at gunpoint, his isolation is shattered, because the guy with the weapon is his mate, and Charlie’s falcon insists on truth: the other half of his soul is a desperate man who doesn’t know he’s a shifter.

Warren has no money for rent, his sister’s ex beat her bloody, and he’s working double shifts to survive. He thought his life couldn’t get any worse, but then he mugs an ex-soldier who somehow turns the tables and offers him something impossible: hope.

Of course, nothing is that simple, and Charlie’s resistance to their bond sabotages their relationship before it really begins. Warren can handle hardship, but now his enemies are bigger than the bully next door, and he’s broken the darkest taboo of the Sky Hunter falcons. Only Charlie can save him, but can a damaged ex-soldier save himself, too?

#GayRomance, #Shifters, #Suspense, #EroticRomance

Coffee Time Romance loved Lone Wolf! #review

ctr5cups

Coffee Time Romance loved LONE WOLF (Bad Oak Boys #4)!

“Lone Wolf is another high speed read from the incomparable Erin M. Leaf. I absolutely loved the fourth book in the Bad Oak Boys Series. Shane and Tim are hotter than hot and the love scenes in this book are positively combustible. The imagination of this author just has no problem going “out there” and I for one love it!”

Read the rest of the review.

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

Lone-Wolf-evernightpublishing-JayAheer2016-finalimage  amazon-bestseller-icon  BestsellerIcon100X100

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

Read an excerpt here.

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***

Lone-Wolf-evernightpublishing-JayAheer2016-banner2

What are people saying about Lone Wolf?

Open Skye Book Reviews — 5 stars!

“I love this entire series and found this to be one of the best of the bunch. I thought there was a lot of emotional depth in this story and some tough considerations to be made concerning nature and nurture and vigilantism versus justice.”

Cocktails & Books — 4 stars!

“Shane and Tim are a couple worth rooting for.  They are both stubborn and powerful, and their road to a happily ever after isn’t smooth at all.”

Rainbow Book Reviews

“This is probably the most exciting and emotionally draining match-up in the whole series, and that’s saying a lot. But Shane and Tim are loners, they’re aggressive, they both like a little pain, and they’re falling in love.”

Love Bytes Reviews — 4.5 stars!

“I’ve enjoyed reading all four books in the Bad Oak Boys series because they’re not your run of the mill paranormal/werewolf m/m romance story’s.  . . . I have no hesitations in recommending this book and series!”

 

 

 

Rainbow Book Reviews loved Lone Wolf!

I’m so happy that Rainbow Book Reviews enjoyed Lone Wolf (Bad Oak Boys 4). Here’s some of the review:

 

“This is probably the most exciting and emotionally draining match-up in the whole series, and that’s saying a lot. But Shane and Tim are loners, they’re aggressive, they both like a little pain, and they’re falling in love.”

Read the rest of the review.

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

Lone-Wolf-evernightpublishing-JayAheer2016-finalimage  amazon-bestseller-icon  BestsellerIcon100X100

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

Read an excerpt here.

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***

Lone-Wolf-evernightpublishing-JayAheer2016-banner2

 

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.