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Authors: Charisma Knight

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“It’s okay,” he assured her. “I have no plans on going anywhere anytime soon.”

While surveying the damaged basement, Nicholas couldn’t help but to think about the

beautiful creature standing behind him. On the drive over, he swore he’d maintain a

semblance of professionalism and control. Yet as soon as he laid eyes on her, the promise had flown out the window.

He enjoyed catching her off guard with his comments and stares. He sniffed the air, his cock hardening at her increasing arousal that reminded him of musk and cinnamon. That irresistible twinkle in her eye made him want to stare into the lovely brown pools while he made love to her for hours on end.

Reality set in as an angry growl escaped from his lips at the scent of the male who invaded her home. The bastard wanted to do more than just scare her, he’d realized. The various holes that had been punched into the basement and living room walls told him she was dealing with a psychopath. He heard Pearl gasp and turned abruptly.

“Nicholas? I heard you growl. Is something wrong?”

He’d scared her, but couldn’t bear to frighten her further about the wolf’s intentions. His cheeks burned as he turned back around to scribble something on his clipboard. With a sigh, he turned to face her again.

“Do you have someone staying with you?” He stared into her glittering brown eyes,

releasing a breath when she shook her head. “And you’re not afraid?”

“Hell, no. This is my house and next time I’ll be ready for the bastard!”

“I’d feel better if you weren’t alone.”

“I’m fine Nicholas and I don’t need anyone babysitting me,” She said stubbornly.

He narrowed his eyes and smiled at her determined nature. “Be that as it may, I still feel someone should watch over you.”

A smiled curved the edge of her lips. “Someone like you?”

The sound of her voice was like silk gliding over his skin. His cock stirred when he caught the scent of her arousal and he was certain she was flirting with him. “Yep,” he replied.

“That’s if you’re not chicken shit.”

She shifted beneath his amorous gaze. “What’s that supposed to mean?”

He leaned in to stroke her cheek. It looked like he’d have to make excuses to be around her home. His crew could focus on other jobs while he concentrated on Pearl in more ways than one.

“It means a second chance has been granted to us and we should seize the moment Pearl.

Now, how about a cup of that delicious coffee I smelled earlier?” He smiled when she blushed.

He loved the innocence, with a dash of shyness that she possessed. Pearl’s stubborn, strong-willed nature on top of everything completed her. He wanted to taste her, so he bent down and planted a soft kiss on her inviting lips. His wolf scratched at the surface, needing so much more than Nicholas was willing to take. She moaned softly when he pulled her

against his throbbing erection.

Not wanting to control his emotions, he tightened his arms around her, gently nibbling on her bottom lip before slipping his tongue inside her mouth. Pearl returned his savage kiss until he groaned softly against her mouth. She tasted so sweet, and he wished to explore her all over.

Nicholas shuddered at the feeling of her soft breasts melding against his body. He allowed his hands to roam along the curves of her body and she was soft in all the right places. His hands glided down the small of her back and to her rounded ass.

“Oh fuck.” He moaned against her lips, squeezing the plump flesh, pressing her body

against his. He growled and squeezed again, until she groaned against his mouth.

“We should stop.” she placed a warm palm against his chest, breaking their connection.

He peered into her eyes, becoming lost in them. “I can’t,” he growled.

“We must,” she whispered.

“You know you don’t want to,” he whispered, before stealing another kiss from those, full precious lips.

Gently she tried pushing him away, yet he pulled her tighter against him, kissing her again.

When he finally released her, he found himself gazing into a set of shocked eyes.

She touched her lips and smiled slightly. “Nicholas, I’m—“

“Making excuses,” he finished her sentence. “Give me one good reason why we

shouldn’t?”

“Guilt? Maybe, it’s too soon because I really wasn’t expecting this to happen.”

“Maybe because Danny was the only man you’ve ever known? My God woman, you

married right out of high school. What the hell did you know about love back then? You were young. You should have been doing whatever the hell you wanted, not tying yourself down to someone who didn’t appreciate you.”

“I just know I’m not ready for this.”

“But, you want it just as much as I do. Pearl, I’m through pretending with you. I let you get away a long time ago and I don’t intend on making the same mistake twice.” There. He’d gotten that off his chest.

“Well, what about you Nicholas? I’ve been divorced for a year. Why didn’t you approach me?”

“Because, up until six months ago, I was seeing someone else.” He admitted.

She held her head down. “I see. What happened?”

“She cheated on me. I could smell him on her, but she always denied it. It took me a while to get over that level of betrayal and even longer to shake the pain. When I commit again, it’s for life. Like you, I was just settling.”

“I’m sorry. I know exactly how you feel in that regard.”

“I have no regrets. I’ve moved on. I deserve so much more and so do you. Now, how about that coffee?” he asked, before picking up his clipboard from the sofa.

“Of course,” she chuckled softly.

Nicholas watched her trying to cover up her nervousness. He knew her more than she knew herself. But, he’d give her some time to prepare for their moment. Until then, he planned on catching up with her. He followed her up the stairs. His gaze fixated on the swaying hips and her well muscle claves flexing with every step she took.

“I know you’re watching my ass,” She said.

“You know this, yet you seem so hell bent on keeping it all to yourself.” He simply refused to keep his thoughts hidden from her. She needed to see what they were missing out on and hopefully she’d act on her impulses too.

Once they were in her kitchen, Nicholas leaned against the counter, glaring at Pearl as she poured them coffee. Every so often she glanced up at him, but would quickly avert her eyes. Why was she being so shy around him? Had Danny been so overbearing during their marriage that she deemed it necessary to seek some type of approval for something she wanted?

She shot him a puzzling glare. “Something wrong?”

“Nope. Nothing at all, darling.”

“You’d better stop toying with me and be serious, Nicholas. How do you take your

coffee?” she asked with a smile.

He caught the “come hither” in her voice. She reacted well to his remarks. Yet, she still held back. There just had to be a way to make her loosen up. Unable to resist the brazen thought that crossed his mind, he grinned, and hoped she’d catch on.

“Black.” When a whimper escaped her, and her eyes twinkled, Nicholas knew she’d

received the message.

She simply smiled and strolled into the dining room area. “Nicholas,” she said, setting the cups on the table before she sat down. “What am I going to do with you?”

“You keep setting yourself up,” he said with a grin before laying the clipboard down and joining her at the table. He took a sip of the rich Hazelnut coffee and smiled.

“Seriously, why are you behaving like this?” she asked.

Leaning back in his chair, he tapped his long fingers on the polished wood of the table, shooting her a serious gaze. “I want you, Pearl. I’ve wanted you forever and now that we’re in such close proximity of one another, I refuse to deny it.”

“So, Mr. Wolford, how much will it cost for you to fix my basement?” she asked.

Nicholas paused. He’d been so hell bent on chasing the one who’d gotten away, he’d

neglected to write up the estimate. “Tell you what, I’ll send you an email tonight. But, we’ll replace the glass to the sliding door in your basement tonight. I don’t want you sleeping with just plastic across the frame.”

He picked up the cell and called one of his men. After ending the call, he smiled. “Your door will be replaced tonight, so no worries about that. I’ll be here while my men are working.”

“What will you do while your men are repairing my basement door?” Pearl asked.

Nicholas grinned. “Watching over you.”

She shook her head. “I told you that I’m fine. What happens when they leave?”

He wiggled his eyebrows and grinned.

Pearl busted out laughing.

“I’ll be keeping in close contact with you,” he said in a low voice. “Until they catch the person who broke in here, I’m going to worry. And, I don’t like worrying.”

“Okay.”

She reached over, placing a hand on his forearm, making his wolf howl. The heat

emanating from her hand pushed him over the edge and he longed more than ever to have her body next to his.

Pearl’s cell phone rung. Removing it from the clip attached to her dress, she glanced at it with a frown.

Nicholas leaned across the table. “Who’s that?”

“Danny. I really need to take this.” She rose from the table and slipped into the kitchen.

“Go right ahead.” Picking up his clipboard, he rose and walked around the house,

pretending to focus his attention on his paperwork. He heard Pearl’s voice becoming

strained and sensed the conversation growing tense as she walked a path from kitchen to dining room.

“Danny, I never told the police you attacked me. Yes, I know, but--“

The jerk wasn’t giving her the chance to explain, and it pissed him off. He knew his boundaries though, and exerted the control to not snatch the phone out of her hand to curse Danny out. After all, what would that accomplish?

“I mentioned we were divorced, and I told them you’d moved to Houston. Look, I’m sorry.

Don’t call me again. Asshole!”

He watched as Pearl disconnected the phone and slammed it down on the dining room

table. “You okay?”

“The police contacted him. He’s pissed because I’ve disrupted his life.” She folded her arms. Her eyes were closed as tears began spilling down her cheek.

Laying the clipboard down, Nick walked over to where she stood and looked directly in her eyes. Concerned, he began kneading her shoulders. “Shh, put it all behind you sweetheart.”

“I’m sorry, Nicholas.” She leaned against him and wrapped her arms around him. “I hate having contact of any kind with him.”

Rubbing her back gently, he rocked her softly in his embrace until the tears ebbed. When he felt her body completely relax against his, he smiled.

“You’re going to be okay,” he told her.

She looked up at him and nodded in agreement. “I know that I will.” she whispered.

“Thank you for being here for me.”

“Whenever you need me, I’ll always be here for you,” he promised, before kissing her gently on the forehead. He sighed, delivering a trail of kisses down her nose and to her lips.

When she kissed him back, his heart beat wildly as his wolf longed for it’s mate.

Nicholas wanted to sink deep inside her, but knew she wasn’t ready for that. He could sense it. They’d have their time. He became lost in the kiss, as the caresses of her hands against his body and her dainty kisses catapulted him into space.

She rolled her soft hips against his throbbing erection. Making him shudder. A drop of pre-cum dripped from the head of his cock to his balls. He’d wait for her to come to him and when she did, he’d please her like no other. Reluctantly, he pulled away from her when something captured his attention. Suddenly, he sensed a presence outside. His body

stiffened as the hair on the back of his neck stood on end.

Another wolf.
Releasing Pearl, he huffed out his chest and growled.

“What is it?” she asked, tugging at his t-shirt, confusion clouded her face.

“Stay here,” he demanded.

“Nicholas, you’re scaring me. Tell me what’s going on
now.”

“That wolf whom invaded your home has returned. He’s right outside.”

She hooked an arm around his well-muscled one, trying to change his mind. “No, it’s too dangerous. I’ll call the police.”

Nicholas lifted a brow. “Really, Pearl?”

“No, Nick.”

“Trust me. I can take care of myself.” He insisted.

Slipping out onto the enclosed patio door, he cocked his head to the side to listen.

Movement caught his attention in the trees and he sent out a warning growl to the bastard that was lurking around Pearl’s home. This was his territory, setting foot within this house again meant sudden death.

* * *

The black wolf peered from behind the large oak tree adjacent from Pearl’s house. The

other wolf’s warning didn’t frighten him away at all, made hunting the prey all the more challenging.

What the hell made Wolford think he could protect her? He’d been watching the house

regularly, and it pissed him off that
he
was near Pearl. If she only knew what he’d do to her, she wouldn’t have dumped him months ago.

She would pay dearly for rejecting him and decided days ago he’d snap her neck like a twig. It wasn’t enough that he’d broken into her home, ransacking her expensive furniture.

No, the twat needed to be taught a lesson. She desperately needed to see he was no

pushover. If it hadn’t been for the cops last night, he would have taken what he’d wanted and left her for dead.

That was okay though. Wolford couldn’t watch her twenty-four seven. He grinned. He’d toy with her a little more before going in for the kill. He wanted to drive her crazy before brutally ravishing her body. He wanted her terrified out of her fucking mind. He growled and stroked his cock a few times. He’d give her the fuck of her life again before putting her down. The wolf smiled, shifted, and darted into the woods.

Chapter Five

A week later, since the evening Nicholas had his men replace her sliding glass door, Pearl and Nicholas became closer than ever. She discovered they’d shared common

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