Congratulations! You have a FATED MATE!
That was what the card said. Grey, an Alpha wolf shifter, laughed at it, though. Fated mate? What a joke! He had tried enough dating websites in the last month to choke a horse shifter and he was done with all of them. Besides, having a mate would mean joining a pack and that would just bring up a past Grey had no intention of doing.
But MATES, INC. had an agenda that would not be ignored or put off. Grey had a mate. And the powers that be were determined he was going to meet him come hell, high water, or a past best forgotten.
“Gotta feed the wolf.”
That surprised him. “Excuse me?” he mumbled through his chewing.
“Mmm.” Grey nodded. How the hell had Kade known? Even though he was now probably considered a regular here, Coyote’s was open to anyone. Even humans, as Donlan had proven.
As if Kade heard Grey’s unasked question, he leaned forward. “I could smell it.” He closed his eyes and slowly breathed in yet again, close enough to Grey to make him know that was exactly what he was doing. Kade stepped back and said, “I’m an Omega, after all. But you probably knew that.”
Oh. Yeah. That made sense. For a second he was thrown off guard. The whole day had been unsettling, with the thought that his past had caught up to him and was front and center. Not that it would have been an issue. Just embarrassing. Alphas didn’t run away. Not good Alphas anyway.
Suddenly, the appetite he’d thought he had was gone.
Damn. He was over Nick. He was. Hell, the two of them had never even been together. There was nothing to get over. Still, he had dreamt about the man, had lost himself in daydreams of him. But lately, ever since he’d met Kade, he didn’t even think about the man. He was over that obsession.
It was hard not belonging to a pack, though.
Oh, he’d had offers. There were two or three major packs in the immediate area. But as hard as it was to not belong, to belong was harder yet. There was just so much to explain, and he wasn’t sure he was ever going to be ready. Not that a new pack would insist on knowing every detail. But they did need to know some things; like why he’d left, why a new pack was important to him, was he a danger to himself or others. Especially an Alpha. They would want to know the scars he carried so that they could figure out whether or not he would be a good addition or a detriment to his new pack. He knew that. He’d been on the committee in his old pack that had made those kinds of decisions and had seen some major, fucked-up scars on shifters. Oh yes, there was a long standard list of questions to answer. There was so much that a new pack had to consider, it was the reason he couldn’t move forward. His reasons for leaving were so…so…petty, so self-serving.
But maybe that was the first step. Not finding a boyfriend or even a fuck buddy because that just seemed so wrong now. Finding a pack. Switching his focus to that would be better for him all the way around.
Except even that decision made him feel absolutely pathetic. What the hell? Why was he so afraid to be alone?
Crap, crap, crap!
But was that it? He was afraid to be alone?
No. Not afraid of being alone. Afraid of ending up alone.
“Hey, something wrong with the steak?”
Kade’s soft, encouraging voice broke through the fog of Grey’s black thoughts and he was grateful. It had been six months. Six solid months. It was time to move not only forward, but beyond. Point was, he had really been through absolutely nothing back then and he had put himself into this present hell hole. No one else was to blame.
“No. Steak’s fine, just fine.” He absently took another piece into his mouth. Oh yeah. Steak was very fine. He closed his eyes as he savored it. That’s what he needed to do. He needed to think about the here and now. Not yesterday, when he’d thought Nick was who he wanted, and not tomorrow, when he had to face a life without Kade, a man he needed. Not even about this afternoon when he’d allowed something possibly very special to slip away.
Only think about the steak.
He licked his lips, capturing the juices and the flavor almost as if he were tasting that little wolf. He imagined that instead of losing him, he had caught him, forced him to surrender, forced him to submit. The smaller wolf would bare his throat and Grey would mark him with a mating bite.
But, what about Kade? How could that small wolf out there in the woods have been his mate when all he could think about was Kade? Kade submitting, Kade baring his neck for the mating mark…
Hurri Cosmo lives in Minnesota where she holds tight to the idea that there, where it’s cold a good part of the year, she won’t age as fast. Yep, she avoids the truth as much as she avoids mirrors. But one of the reasons she loves writing is reality doesn’t always offer up a “happily ever after” and being able to take control of that is a powerful lure. Being a happy ending junkie, writing just makes them easier to find. Oh, she doesn’t mind “real life” and she does try to at least keep it in mind when she writes her stories, but she truly loves creating a wonderful couple, knowing they will fall in love and have their HEA. Every - single - time. And, of course, that is exactly the reason she loves reading this genre, too. Give her a glass of red wine, some dark chocolate, and her computer, whether she is reading or writing, and she will entertain herself for hours. The fact she actually gets paid to do it is Snickers bars on the frosting on the cake.
You can find me at:
Other books by Hurri Cosmo:
How West Was Won
The Superior Jewel
Ice Dragon Tales (contains the first two books in the series, The Servant Prince and The Servant King)
Talasar’s Elixir (Book one in the Dragon for Hire series)
Amber Moon (Part of the Intoxicating Fantasies series)
Chase and Capture
Baby, Think it Over
The Door Keeper
A Place to Belong
The Neighbors – A Vampire Story
Mates, Inc. by Hurri Cosmo is now available at Amber Allure.
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