Mounted By Her Weretiger Mate (Steamy Weretiger Paranormal Romance)

BOOK: Mounted By Her Weretiger Mate (Steamy Weretiger Paranormal Romance)
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MOUNTED BY HER WERETIGER MATE

(Steamy Weretiger Paranormal Romance)

Meghan Archer

 

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. All participants in these fictitious events are consenting, non-related adults over the age of eighteen.

 

Kindle Edition

Copyright 2015 True Desire Publishing

All rights reserved.

 

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MOUNTED BY HER WERETIGER MATE

(Steamy Weretiger Paranormal Romance)

 

 

 

I’d never thought I’d be on an adventure. I grew up in a town with only one street light, where the church had more say in teaching the local kids than the teachers did. My life there was what you’d have called ordinary and boring, but the one thing that gave my world life was the thing I loved the most—my photography.

 

Eventually, once I’d graduated high school, I made the big decision to follow my dreams and go to school for a degree. My parents had been furious, not wanting to lose their little girl to a world of sin and excess, but I knew my life lay much farther than that one-horse town. I just never thought I’d end up in the jungles of India, capturing pictures of some of the most exotic wildlife on earth.

 

From the moment I stepped off of the plane, something within me stirred, my heart racing as I began to realize just how far from home I’d gone. I was afraid, terrified even, but above all of that, I was excited, ready to see what I’d find out there in the wild, unexplored jungles.

 

When you live your entire life in America, you come to accept a certain image of other countries. For example, India was supposed to be all jungles and hidden temples with intricate drawings on stone walls. Walking into Dehli, however, reminded me that while other places are certainly much different than home, they could still bear a startling amount of similarities to the United States.

 

They had apartments and shops and streets, and I wasn’t sure what else I should have been expecting. A jungle growing right out of the McDonalds, maybe?

 

But as I started to internally kick myself for being ignorant, my translator nudged me toward the all-wheel-drive Jeeps waiting for us just off the runway.

 

I climbed down the staircase that had been rolled right up to the door of our small jet and made my way over to the cars, my luggage in hand.

 

“Lana!” came a familiar voice from inside one of the cars, the window rolling down to reveal the face of my best friend, Sasha. She was the one who had recommended me for the project, and I was more than happy to see another part of the world.

 

“Sasha!” I cried, pulling open her door and embracing her. “I’ve missed you so much!”

 

“I’ve missed you, too!” she said.

 

I looked into her face and realized just how much the last year had changed her. Her skin was tanned from her days out in the sun and her hair looked wild despite her best attempts to tame it with a messy ponytail. I knew humidity would be a big issue here, but it hadn’t hit me until then how little conditioner I’d packed.

 

“Go ahead and get in the car,” she said excitedly. “We’ll talk on the way out to meet our new guide.”

 

I climbed into the car on the opposite side of Sasha, stowing my bags in the hatchback and idling up close to my best friend for another hug.

 

“Did something happen to your old guide?” I asked.

 

“He got really sick on our last trip out,” Sasha said, her face etched with concern. “He had to be brought to a hospital and then airlifted out to somewhere they could give him the treatment her needed. His wife is worried sick.”

 

“I’m so sorry to hear that,” I said, my eyes catching on the buildings behind her thought the windows as we moved through the city. “Is this new guide any good?”

 

“From what I’ve heard, he’s one of the best. His name is Jake, and he probably knows the jungle better than some of the animals that live in it.”

 

“Jake doesn’t sound like a Hindi name,” I said, adjusting my seatbelt to give me a little more breathing room.

 

“That’s because he’s an American.”

 

“Really?” I asked, raising my eyebrows that a foreigner might be a better guide than one of the locals. “He’s really that good?”

 

“Some of my colleagues swear by him, and not have to have everything translated is going to be a nice change of pace.”

 

Sasha was a wildlife conservationist by trade. She was in India to find evidence of poaching to strengthen her case with the Indian government for establishing a reserve over a large section of the jungle. She had thought that a few good photos of the wildlife might great to have, which was where I came in.

 

“How long do you need me at the camp for?” I asked, reminding myself that I had an exhibition I needed to be home for in just a week’s time.

 

“It should only be a few days,” Sasha said, smiling as she squeezed my hand. “I won’t hold you hostage for too long.”

 

The ride out to the village where we were going to meet our guide took much longer than I’d expected, and before I knew it, I had fallen asleep as we bounced along the uneven dirt roads. The farther we went from the capital the less I started to be reminded of home.

 

While I slept, I dreamt of being deep in the jungle, lost and separated from everyone else. I couldn’t see anything beyond the thick undergrowth, but something in my gut told me that I was being watched. As the dream dragged on, I realized that I’d begun to hear a deep, menacing growl rumbling through the leaves all around me, and yet coming from nowhere all at the same time.

 

My heart raced, and all of a sudden, I knew that something had snuck up behind me, the growling replaced by a heavy, rasping breath right on the back of my neck. I turned around and as I stared into the eyes of the dream-conjured creature, my own eyes burst open and brought me back to reality as we went over a rather large bump in the road.

 

“Everything okay?” Sasha asked, turning her worried gaze to me.

 

“Yeah, just a bad dream,” I said, trying to assuage the concern brewing behind her eyes. “Dreamt I was about to get eaten by a tiger.”

 

“Jeeze,” she said, chuckling slightly, “a tiger? Well, lucky for you there aren’t supposed to be any in our area. And most tigers don’t eat people, anyway.”

 

“No? Then all those stories about man-eaters are just folk-tales?”

 

“Oh, no, man-eaters definitely exist,” Sasha said, suddenly a little more serious. “There haven’t been any near the camp, though, and tigers generally tend to keep away from people.”

 

“They must know what’s good for them,” I laughed, trying to settle back into a comfortable position.

 

“Yeah, you may be right.”

 

After the nightmare, I couldn’t get back to sleep. My head was filled with the thought of a ravenous tiger stalking me through the shadows. Instead, I watched out the window in the hopes of maybe catching a glimpse of wildlife along the way. Sadly, the only thing I managed to see was a rather unimpressed looking monkey sitting in one of the lower branches along the tree line. Needless to say, one monkey was hardly enough to relieve my boredom.

 

I knew India would hold exciting, new experiences for me, but I was more than a little impatient to get straight to them. I’d almost begun to think we’d never reach our rendezvous point when Sasha shook me from my lazy stupor.

 

“We’re here,” she said, a grin splitting her face from ear to ear. When the cars came to a stop, Sasha was practically already out the door, running into the arms of a rather strapping young man. I had to admit I was jealous—I’d never had much luck with men, and by the way Sasha looked at this new man in her life, I could only assume they were deeply in love.

 

“This is Tristan,” she said, locking arms with him as I approached. “He’s—”

 

“Your boyfriend?” I asked, smiling as I reached out to shake his hand, only to notice the golden ring adorning it.

 

“Much more than that,” Sasha said, beaming as she produced her own left hand, a thin, delicate duplicate of Tristan’s ring glimmering in the Indian sunlight.

 

“Oh, my God!” I exclaimed, locking my best friend in a bone crushing hug. “You’re engaged?! Why didn’t you say anything?”

 

“I wanted it to be a surprise!” she said, her smile so wide I was sure she had pulled a muscle in her face.

 

“Normally this isn’t how I would have done things either,” Tristan said, a smooth British accent spilling from his lips. “But it’s been a bit of a whirlwind romance, and I just couldn’t stand another moment without proposing.”

 

I smiled again, but inside I realized just how jealous of Sasha I really was. Engaged to a gorgeous man with a hot British accent? What wasn’t there to be envious of? All I had back home was a sad little apartment and a few rejection letters regarding my photo submissions to a few local galleries.

 

“I’m so happy for you, Sasha,” I said, doing my best to keep my smile genuine. But deep down I secretly hoped the two of them would fall apart right in front of me. Sasha getting married was one step closer to losing my best friend to a whole other life, one that probably had no place for her nobody photographer friend.

 

“I want you as my maid of honor,” Sasha squealed excitedly. “We’re not set on a date yet, but I’ll do anything to make sure you’re there. I couldn’t do this without my best girl.”

 

You certainly got engaged without me,
I thought venomously, but I did my best not to let it show.

 

“Of course I will,” I said, pulling her into another hug to hide the conflicted look on my face. “I’m so happy for you.”

 

“Are you three going to stand here all day, or are we eventually going into the jungle?” came a gruff voice from behind me. All three of us turned to look, our eyes falling on a tall, powerfully-built man with deep auburn hair and a dark tan.

 

“You’re Jake?” Sasha asked, frowning at the man’s rudeness. “Is there a problem?”

 

“No, I just want to do my job and be done with it. I don’t like being out in the jungle more than I have to be, and the less time we’re in there, the better.”

 

“What’s wrong with the jungle?” I asked, turning my gaze toward the guide. My heart fluttered. There was something about him, something about the way he moved so fluidly, or how his eyes stared deep into my own as he spoke. I wasn’t sure if I should feel scared of him simply be in awe. He moved like poetry in motion.

 

“There are things in the trees that neither you, nor I want to meet, Miss…?”

 

“Lana. Lana Thomas,” I said, licking my lips nervously as those gorgeous, Lana-colored eyes burned into my own. Something began to burn inside of me that I hadn’t felt in such force since my college days—lust.

 

“Well, then, Ms. Thomas, I hope you and your friends here will take my advice and make our trip as short as possible.”

 

“What’s so scary out there? A tiger on the loose?” Sasha asked, leaning her weight against Tristan.

 

“Something like that,” Jake said with a deep frown. “I’ve been ready to leave since before you arrived. I suggest you drop what you don’t need and get ready to move out.”

 

“Yes,
mien Fuhrer
,” Sasha muttered as Jake turned and strode off to check one more thing before our departure. “What a dick.”

 

“Maybe,” I mumbled, biting on my knuckle as I watched him. Something about him seemed so restless, on edge, but at the same time, confident and self-assured. He was a mystery wrapped in an enigma, and my curiosity was more than a little piqued. I loved a good puzzle.

BOOK: Mounted By Her Weretiger Mate (Steamy Weretiger Paranormal Romance)
6.5Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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