Read Loving the Lion: BBW Shifter Mail Order Bride Paranormal Romance (Mail-Order Mates Book 1) Online

Authors: Lola Kidd

Tags: #Romance, #Fantasy, #Lion, #Werelion, #Adult, #Erotic Romance Fiction

Loving the Lion: BBW Shifter Mail Order Bride Paranormal Romance (Mail-Order Mates Book 1)

BOOK: Loving the Lion: BBW Shifter Mail Order Bride Paranormal Romance (Mail-Order Mates Book 1)
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Loving the Lion

Mail-Order Mates Book 1

Lola Kidd

Copyright 2015 by Lola Kidd

All rights reserved.

This book is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is entirely coincidental. Names, characters, businesses, organizations, places, events, and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or used fictitiously. No part of this work may be copied or reproduced without the express consent of the author.

 

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About This Book

Curvy Erin Numm is over dating. At the tender age of twenty-eight, she’s seen it all. A string of bad dates and heartbreak has left her ready to put herself on the sideline. Her plans are changed when she meets an agent from Lovely and Kind Brides. The mysterious woman tells Erin she has the PERFECT match for her. Curious, Erin decides to give love one last try and join the mail-order bride agency.

 

Shifter Owen Brooks is a lion on a mission. He’s working on big plans but he’s having trouble crossing one special item off his to-do list; Find A Mate. A shifter isn’t complete until they find their mate and Owen’s had no luck in that department. After months of no matches, an LK Brides agent emails to let him know she has found his mate. The agent’s optimism is enough to give Owen hope that maybe his long search is over.

 

Follow two strangers as they embark on a journey to find their one true love. This is the first book in the Mail-Order Mates series. It is a standalone novella with a HEA. No cliffhanger!

 

Loving the Lion
Mail-Order Mates Book 1
One

“It’s not going to fit.” The salesgirl wrung her hands. “I’m so sorry. We do have the black dress in a larger size.”

Erin Numm pulled at the zipper uselessly. She knew this was a bad idea. Her Skinny Minnie size zero sister was trying to be nice. That was the only reason Erin had agreed to the day of shopping. Erica was two years younger and about twenty-two sizes smaller than Erin. They shared the same mousey brown hair and crooked smile but that was where the similarities ended. Erin and her sister were still best friends despite how different they were on the outside and in personality. The only thing Erin ever refused to do with Erica was shopping.

“We can try Maritza’s,” Erica suggested as she tried to force the zipper down. “You have to have something new for this wedding.”

“I have something to wear.” Erin shooed her sister away. She twisted awkwardly as she tried to pull the stubborn zipper down. Of course she had already come out of the dressing room to show the salesgirl that the dress in fact did not fit. Now she was standing on display in front of the statuesque blonde who couldn’t stop staring. The woman was making Erica sweat.

The salesgirl knelt down and pushed Erin’s hands away from the zipper. She started separating fabric from the metal teeth. “I told my boss that we needed to get more sizes. You aren’t the first person today to come in and not find anything. We’re losing customers because of her stupid ordering.”

“We’ll find something,” Erica said confidently. Her blue eyes had a steely determination that told Erin she would be pounding the pavement until she had a new dress in hand.

“You shouldn’t have to go anywhere else.” The salesgirl ripped the zipper down viciously. “You found a dress you liked. You should be able to buy it.”

“She’ll find something better,” Erica declared.

Erin knew she wouldn’t. She hated to go back in the dressing room and put on her skinny jeans and sweater. The dress didn’t even fit her and it looked great. The moment she’d seen the peacock blue summer dress, she knew it was the one. It was perfect for a causal wedding or a first date. It was made of the lightest material and it felt like a dream. Erin knew she would be disappointed if she bought anything else. Too bad they didn’t have it in her size.

“I can order it for you!” The salesgirl was beating on the dressing room door. “I just checked and they have it in two bigger sizes. I bet the next one up will fit you. Free shipping straight to your house if you want.”

Erin came out of the dressing room. “You don’t have to do that for me. I can find something else.”

“She’ll take it,” Erica said. “At least you’ll have something to wear for the next wedding.”

Which won’t be mine
, Erin thought glumly. Over the summer, she had gone to countless weddings and baby showers. All the girls she’d gone to college with were getting married or having babies. Erica had been her date to every one of them. It was too depressing for words. She just had no luck in the dating department. It was bad date after bad date after bad date. She hadn’t even gone on a proper date in over a year and a half. After five terrible dates in a row, Erin had sworn off dating.

Unless her friends had someone great, she wasn’t wasting anymore time on bad dates with awful men. She cringed when she thought of the look on the last man’s face when she had walked in. He clearly hadn’t been expecting a curvy girl and he wasn’t pleased. He’d rushed through dinner and at the end he’d shaken her hand. No thank you! She didn’t need anymore of that.

“Give me a minute and I’ll have it all set up for you.” The salesgirl started punching things into the computer. The entire time she was ordering the dress, the blonde woman from the dressing room continued to watch Erin. It was starting to make her skin crawl.

Shopping finished, Erica had to have another giant iced coffee drink. The girls waited in line at the only coffee shop in town.

“Do you know that woman?” Erica asked. “I think she’s following us.”

Erin turned around, and sure enough, the blonde was staring at her from a table. Noticing Erin and Erica staring, the woman stood up and came over.

Erin tried to keep calm. She had no idea what the woman wanted.

“Hello, I’m Olivia Grey.” The woman smiled broadly and stuck out her hand.

Erica shook her hand. “I’m Erica and this is my sister Erin. Are you following us?”

The woman took off her oversized sunglasses. She was even more beautiful now that Erin could see her whole face. She had the clearest blue eyes and her skin was poreless. She was wearing a stylish cape and small kitten heels. Erin couldn’t imagine ever looking that put together. Most days she didn’t bother changing out of sweatpants since she worked at home.

“I work for Lovely and Kind Brides and I think you would be perfect for one of my clients.”

“Thanks, but I already have a boyfriend.” Erica smiled apologetically.

“Oh, sorry, dear, I wasn’t talking to you.” Olivia fixed her blue eyes on Erica. She pulled a business card from her purse. “I know this is a bit unusual but I hope you’ll consider my offer. If you’re single, that is. My number and email address are on the card. Look us up, and if you’re interested, please give me a call.”

“Thank you.” Erin couldn’t think of anything else to say and stared at the thick business card dumbfounded.

Olivia put her sunglasses back on. “Nice meeting you both. Hope to hear from you soon.”

And with a swish of her black cape, she was gone. Erica waggled her eyebrows and laughed. “Can you believe that woman? What a nutjob.”

“I thought she was pretty.” Erin fingered the card.

Erica gaped at her sister. “You can’t seriously be thinking of calling her. Erin, she works for LK Brides. That’s a mail-order bride company. And you know what kind of people they cater to.”

“I do.” Erin slipped the card into her purse carefully. It couldn’t hurt to see what the woman wanted. Her day had just gotten a lot more interesting.

~
~*

Owen Brooks brought two cold beers from his fridge to his friends Kellan and Clint. They were having a drink to celebrate Clint’s grand re-opening the weekend before. It was the first time the three men had had time to meet up.

“To Clint.” Owen raised his bottle. “You worked hard, man. You deserve that great new shop.”

Clint tapped Owen’s bottle with his own. “Thanks, buddy. I never thought those renovations were going to end.”

“Neither did I.” Kellan joked. His hotel was just down the block from Clint’s store in town. “It sounded like they were demolishing in my office.”

“It was even louder in the store. I don’t know how I got a customer for the last six months.”

“I’m glad I don’t have to deal with that stuff.” Owen shook his head. “I’ll stick to the fresh air and open spaces.”

“And cow shit.” Clint shook his head. “I don’t know how you do all this yourself.”

“I like it. Nothing complicated about herding cattle.”

“Your brothers should be helping you.” Kellan scowled. “Have you talked with the pride about getting one of the young guys out here, at least?”

Owen shook his head and sighed. “It’s no use going down there and asking for help. My pride brothers are lazy as hell. I don’t want to ask my mom or sisters for help, either. Just doesn’t seem right to me.”

“And that’s why you should be alpha,” Kellan said.

Owen groaned. “Not this again. Tonight is about celebrating, Clint.”

“Not much to celebrate if I don’t have any customers,” Clint pointed out. “With the pack and the pride hurting, I don’t get as much tourist business.”

“How many tourists come to a hardware shop?” Kellan leaned back on the porch bench.

“Other businesses would be coming in more for repairs and supplies if they had more customers. Smartass.”

Kellan raised his bottle in surrender. “You got me there, old man. You’re very right about the pack, too. They are one sorry bunch of wolves.”

“The whole town is one sorry place.” Owen leaned forward. His beer bottle was between his knees. “You know how many kids we have who come back to Sunset Falls once they graduate from college?”

Kellan snorted. “Like we’ve got kids who graduate from college.”

“My point exactly,” Owen said. He clenched his jaw. They had brought it up. He hadn’t wanted to talk about all this but it had been on his mind for months. “We have to do something or our home is going to become a ghost town.”

“Yeah, but what can we do?” Kellan asked. His grey hair fell in his face as he leaned forward too. “The town has known about these problems for years. There’s not much that can be done.”

“I can think of a few things.” Owen went inside and came back with an old picture. “I found this in my Dad’s things.”

He handed the picture to Clint and Kellan scooted closer to look. The photograph was yellowed and the frame was cracked in the upper corner. In the picture, Owen and Kellan’s grandparents were standing with a man who was presenting them with a plaque. They were all dressed nicely and smiling broadly.

“Ma and Pa.” Kellan took the picture from Clint. “This is when we won that award from
American Shifter Weekly
. That plaque is still in City Hall somewhere.”

Owen nodded. “We were voted one of the best small towns for shifters in 1953.”

Clint whistled. “That was forever and a day ago, Owen. Look how far we’ve fallen from there.”

“We could turn it all around.” Owen sat down again. “Remember how our grandparents used to talk about this place with so much pride? We could have that again.”

“How do you think that’s going to happen?” Kellan put the picture on the porch bench. “There’s no way anyone would mistake Sunset Falls for a nice place to live anymore.”

“We’ve got nothing going for us,” Clint said softly. “I know you love this place, Owen, but look at what we’re working with. Low birthrate, decent schools, but all our kids leave, and tourists aren’t coming around like they used to. That’s a lot to turn around.”

“We just need a little dose of hope,” Owen insisted. “Once people see how good life can be here, it’ll be like it was before.”

Kellan laughed. “Good luck with that.”

Owen took a drink. “We have so many business owners in Sunset Falls and so many smart men. Together we can make this place shine like it once did.”

Kellan snorted. “Yeah, a town full of men. Wonderful. That’s part of the damn problem. Maybe if we had a few more women, the place wouldn’t look like a black and white Communist city from the Cold War days.”

“You know, Kellan, I like how you think.” Owen smiled. The conversation was going exactly how he’d hoped. “If we could get more women to come to Sunset Falls, we’d be going a long way to revitalizing the town.”

“And just how do you suppose you’ll do that?” Clint asked. “You gonna put an ad in the paper?”

“Something like that.” Owen took a big drink of beer. “Have you guys ever heard of Lovely and Kind Brides?”

BOOK: Loving the Lion: BBW Shifter Mail Order Bride Paranormal Romance (Mail-Order Mates Book 1)
2.53Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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