Authors: Jennifer T. Alli
A Wolf’s Obsession
Finding her was easy.
Most werewolves spend decades of their immortal lives searching for their mate. Wyatt had found his in years. The problem? They were both children. Forced to wait for the moment he could claim her, Wyatt had had watched her from afar, his every thought of the moment he and his mate could be together. When his mate was taken from him, his sanity went with her and he was pushed to the edge. Half feral and wracked by violent urges, he's now more wolf than man. Walking a tightrope between sanity and madness he can't afford to let anyone close but meeting Kass changes everything.
Getting rid of him was hard.
Kassandra has problems. A faulty heart and a mad man determined to cut it from her chest while she’s still alive. She doesn’t have time to deal with the wolf barging into her life especially when he can’t seem to decide whether he wants to strangle her or kiss her senseless. Despite all reason and logic she can’t seem to help being attracted to the mad wolf but that doesn’t mean she’s going to stick around when her problems are working hard to see her dead. It’s too bad he’s decided that she isn’t going anywhere.
Being together was inevitable.
As old and new enemies make themselves known, Wyatt and Kass find themselves drawn together. Their only chance at surviving is in the others arms but is the safety Kass finds in Wyatt’s embrace an illusion? Can she truly survive being the object of a wolf’s obsession or will his love kill her for a second time?
Table of Contents
“Don’t scream. Stay calm and you won’t die tonight.”
Staring down the barrel of the gun pointed in her face Kassandra tried not to roll her eyes in annoyance. No one could be expected to stay calm with a gun pointed at them, surely the men that were intent on robbing the small, isolated dinner where she worked knew that. Luckily for them it was in her best interest to stay calm with or without the gun and so she nodded slowly.
It was at times like this that she cursed her tender heart. It was Mary that was meant to be working tonight but the older woman had looked so tired that Kass had volunteered to take her place and work the last few hours in the diner alone. Still, she couldn’t regret her decision. Mary had two young children that relied on her, their deadbeat dad had taken off long ago and Mary was all they had. Kass, on the other hand had no one. Only Charlie would miss her if she died tonight. The thought made her heart constrict. The painful twinge was enough for her to divert her attention back outwards to the two gunmen.
She watched as they came behind the bar that was meant to keep mad men like them out and sighed. All she could do was focus on keeping her breathing steady, do as they asked and hoped they left her in one piece.
“Open the till.”
She nodded, pressing the button that would allow the men to take what they wanted and leave. Her task done, she took a step back, her hands held up in surrender.
“Take what you want.” Her voice was steady despite the fact that her body was trembling.
One of the gunmen smiled revealing a mouth of broken and missing teeth. “We will,” he said as his partner ransacked the till.
Silence filled the air for a moment before the partner exploded. “Worthless!” he bellowed. He spun around, his green bloodshot eyes wild and the gun shaking in his grip. “There’s almost nothing in there. Where the fuck is the money?”
Her heart sped into overdrive. How did they expect her to stay calm when the man in front of her looked very likely to shoot her? “That’s all there is,” she rushed.
Her answer clearly wasn’t good enough. Pain exploded in her temple and spots danced before her eyes when the hard end of the gun connected with the side of her head. Gasping, Kass tried frantically to draw air into her lungs. The dark spots in her vision were getting worse and she knew all too well what would happen if she didn’t manage to slow her racing heart.
“Where is the rest of the money?” he demanded, spittle flying into her face.
Blood tracked down from her brow and she stood momentarily stunned. It had been a long time since she’d seen her own blood and she’d hoped to keep it that way. “I swear that’s all there is. I wouldn’t lie. I promise–”
The tinkle of the door’s chime stopped her mid-sentence.
Eyes wide she let her gaze dart between the two men who were looking increasingly panicked. Gun barrels pressed into her sides as the men crouched behind the bar.
“Get rid of them,” they whispered from her hips. “Don’t try anything stupid or we’ll kill you.”
She nodded slowly and turned her gaze towards the man walking into the diner. His hair was dark, the wet strands plastered to his face but he didn’t seem to care that he was dripping from head to toe. In the dim light of the diner she couldn’t make out his eyes but she found herself entranced with his walk. He moved with an animal grace that under any other circumstances would have had her heart racing in fear. Fortunately she didn’t think her heart could beat any faster without leaving her chest entirely. Her lips parted, her mouth ready to follow the instructions of the gunmen at her side but when he lifted a piece of cotton candy to his lips she found that she couldn’t speak. It should have been strange for a grown man to be eating a children’s treat but the way he made love to the small morsel with his lips and tongue made the sweet seem like an aphrodisiac.
She stood with her mouth open until he stopped directly in front of her and then she felt the unmistakable push of guns into her ribs and the words that she’d been struggling to say tumbled free. “I’m sorry, we’re closed.”
She’d said the exact same words to the men holding her hostage and they’d responded by pulling guns on her. She wondered briefly what this man would do but then it became more important to know what he looked like. His face was hidden beneath the wet strands of his hair but he didn’t seem concerned in the slightest. She could just about make out a strong jaw through the unkempt beard on his face. His dark hair mingled with the wet strands so that his skin was almost invisible. He lifted his head and her brows drew together in confusion. He looked like he was sniffing the air. The small motion and his wild hair made him seem feral. Her legs tensed, ready to run from the predator in front of her but she soon found her sides being prodded, reminding her of what a bad idea flight would be.
Clearing her throat she prayed her voice came out again. “We’re closed. You have to leave.” Cold metal bit into her flesh and words tumbled from her throat. “If you don’t leave I’ll call the police. I’ll tell them you were harassing me. You’ll be arrested.”
“No. I won’t.” He licked his fingers, sucking each one carefully as he savoured the sugary taste that filled his mouth.
His voice was deep, rolling over her like thunder and touching strange places within her body. It sounded rough, as though he didn’t use it often or he’d worn it out screaming. Unbidden, her mind became filled with ways he could have lost his voice. Most of them involved tangled limbs and sweaty bodies connecting in the most intimate of ways. Unnerved by the effect three simple words had on her, Kass tried to take a step back. There was no way just the sound of his voice should have goose bumps appearing on her skin, her knees shouldn’t be trembling just because he’d spoken and she sure as hell shouldn’t be closing her eyes to better appreciate the rough quality of it. Another prod of guns into her defenceless ribs kept her feet rooted to the ground.
Get a hold of yourself,
she mentally scolded.
You don’t know anything about him. He sounds dangerous and that is
a good thing. Now is not the time to be thinking about sex. He could be as bad as these two.
She risked a glance down at her captors.
No. He could be worse. He sounds as though he’s not a stranger to taking people apart. With his bare hands.
Glancing at his hands, Kass found that they were surprisingly enticing. Long, slender fingers that looked as though they were designed to bring a woman pleasure.
Mind out of the gutter!
Shaking her head to remove him from it, she wiped the blood dripping from her head away from her face. “Please. Just go.”
He glanced at the door. Or at least that’s what it looked like. It was hard to tell with all that hair. When he turned his gaze back to her, Kass’ breath caught in her chest. His eyes were glowing and if that hadn't been enough to catch her attention the eerie yellow colour certainly would have been enough to scare her senseless. Her heart now racing uncontrollably she started to tremble. This was certainly not her day.
Hands reached for her, their grip strong but surprisingly gentle. Before she could protest she was pulled over the bar.
You don't have to tell me twice.
Her body shaking wildly Kassandra fled. The door slammed hard against the wall but she refused to look back. Her heart pounding furiously within her chest and black spots darkening her vision, she managed to make it to her car. Shaking fingers struggled to pull the keys from the pocket that kept them and it was even harder to open the door.
She screamed at herself.
Breathing hard she threw herself into the car. The sound of a gun firing stunned her. She stiffened in her seat, unable to calm her racing heart or slow the advance of the thick darkness creeping over her sight. When the second gunshot rang through the air she knew her great escape was over. Her heart stopped before stumbling back into an erratic rhythm, her body falling lax against the wheel as her grip on consciousness slipped out of her reach.
It was that time of the month again. Even though it had happened every month without fail for the last two years Wyatt still felt anxiety cramp his stomach whenever the first day of a new month rolled around. His sister, his amazing, kind and annoying twin would be expecting to hear from him. Sighing, he dug his hands deeper into his pockets. He loved Dylan and would do anything for her, including risking his sanity. Running a hand over his face, he was only mildly concerned that he’d grown a beard. It was hard to remember if he’d had one last month or if this was a recent development but he quickly dismissed it as unimportant. It didn’t matter what the diners thought of him. All he needed was their voices.
It wasn’t rare for him to speak to his sister during the month but on the first she wanted to know he was around other people. She told him their monthly chats kept him human. If only she knew that he only took on this form for her. If she knew that he spent every other day as a wolf living in the forest she would surely make good on her threat to have someone bring him home.
She didn’t understand. No one did. How could he explain the gut wrenching loss he felt for the mate he’d never had a chance to have? Emily, his beautiful Emily. The girl with the stars in her eyes who had captured his heart completely in an instant. She’d smelt of sugar and sweetness and had the soul of a lioness. He’d never had a chance to taste her or have her fiery passions directed at him. He didn’t have to deal with the loss of his mate as a wolf and he could succumb to the mind numbing rage without worry. What did it matter that now he was more animal than man? Without his mate nothing mattered but Dylan would never accept that and neither would Erica. Erica had been like a mother to him and Dylan after their father took his own life to avoid living without the mate that hunters had taken from him. When he’d been young and naïve Wyatt couldn’t understand why his children hadn’t been enough for his father to continue living but now he was old enough to know better. Life without a mate wasn’t a life at all and as soon as he convinced his meddlesome sisters of that fact he was going to end it all.
Growling, he thrust his hand into his pocket and pulled out a half eaten bag of candy floss. His growl deepened when he saw how little was left and he only just resisted the urge to surrender to the rage he was feeling. Shaking his head to discard the unwanted emotion he popped a sugary morsel into his mouth. The taste instantly distracted him. Breathing in the sugary smell, he kicked the diner’s door open and walked inside.
Just sit down. Call Dylan and get out of here.
His plan of action a solid thought in his mind, he popped another sugary morsel into his mouth and quickly devoured the whole bag as he approached the counter. He kept his head down, well aware that his amber eyes would scare the human behind the counter. He hadn’t looked at himself in a mirror for a long time but the last time he’d seen either of his sisters they’d told him that his once brown eyes had been consumed by the wild amber of his wolf. Nothing he’d done had managed to change his eyes back to their natural colour and that was when Dylan had insisted that he call her at least once a month from a place where humans were. It was annoying but the alternative was to have someone take him home. If there weren’t so many happily mated couples back at the estate he would certainly have gone home himself but it was torture to watch others have something you could never have.
The diner was deserted, he should have left but there was something about the red haired waitress that drew him closer. Her face was pale, her hands trembling and fear dripped from her skin clouding whatever her natural fragrance might have been. Then he smelt it. Gunpowder, metal and aggression. A low growl slipped past his lips as he strode closer.
“I’m sorry, we’re closed.”
Her voice was trembling in fear and Wyatt knew his suspicion had been correct. Something wasn’t right.
“We’re closed.” She said again. “You have to leave. If you don’t leave I’ll call the police. I’ll tell them you were harassing me. You’ll be arrested.”
There were two of them; he could smell them now, hiding behind the counter like cowards with their guns pressing hard into the waitress’ soft skin. He scowled, angry at the turn his thoughts had taken. He shouldn’t be thinking about what another woman’s skin felt like. It was an offence to Emily’s memory. He glanced at his sticky fingers realising the cause of his strange thoughts. The lingering smell of cotton candy was clouding his mind.
“No. I won’t.” He licked his fingers clean removing all possible distractions from his mind.
“Please. Just go.”
The sadness in her voice touched something in him, an instinct he’d thought had died long ago. Protectiveness. He glanced at the door knowing he wasn’t going to leave the waitress at the whims of the two men holding her at gunpoint. The blood dripping from her head and the quickly forming bruise on her pale skin told him exactly what he needed to do. His hands reached for her before he realised what he was doing and he pulled her over the counter and placed her tenderly on the ground.
“Run,” he growled. His wolf was stirring, rising to defend her but she didn’t need to see what was about to happen. Innocents never understood the reason for bloodshed and this was going to be messy.
Thankfully the waitress wasted no time in following his instructions and darted quickly out of the diner.