So it’s come to my attention—after a got an email with the gallery of this book, that it’s only 5 days till book 3 from my Moonlit Wolves series comes out
So, it’s ‘bout time I put out and gave ya all a peek
[note: small proofing details may change with final copy]
Craig couldn’t predict setting a werewolf free would lead to this much trouble.
Two months after the kidnapping of his best friend’s mate, Phil can’t stop thinking about the Hunter that set him free. He can’t get the smell out of his nose, and its driving him nuts.
Craig’s only ever known for one thing, hunting werewolves. He was born into it, raised to do nothing but kill the beasts, so when the hell did he let one free. Worse, why can’t he stop thinking about it.
When Phil and Craig meet up again, they start events that will slowly entangle all of them in the war that’s about to unfold—as long as they manage to survive the first wave.
The night air sucked in on them as Craig lay in wait for the werewolf. He knew he was coming. There was no way, not with the look—that growl the beast had spilled out of his mouth when they had the kid in hand. He’d looked feral, and everything in Craig’s gut told him something different was going on. He was coming back.
The beast was definitely coming back. If Craig was sure of anything, it was that was it. This was the full moon night, so it was coming, if not for the fact that it felt for that scrawny man, than for the principle of them taking him.
As nights went, this one was pleasant, if Craig did say so for himself, though coming up to summer, the temperature hadn’t dropped all that much. He liked this time of year. It was nice, though it would have helped if he wasn’t in full gear. His black long sleeves and jeans didn’t have any give from the weather. The sweat that had built up along his back hadn’t changed since midday.
Sitting in a crouch with his back against a thinner trunked pine tree, he had a full view of everywhere but the back of his head. His ears were picking up imagined noises, or maybe they were animals. He’d long since trained himself to hear, but not to linger on the sounds of the wild. It didn’t help that the ground was so dry. The pine needles made noise from the draft of wind that seemed to be blowing at ankle height.
And he waited.
Kidnapping. They had resorted to kidnapping, to actually taking someone off the streets and giving them no choice but to shoot the guy when all was said and done. They made sure there was no way that he could live. He’d seen most of them, and that just didn’t sit well with him. Nothing about what was going on seemed to sit well.
His whole body seemed to be telling him to get the fuck away from this place. He’d had these feelings ever since they came around the corner and saw the guy fall onto the road. Craig had wanted to flee from the get go. He didn’t want to pick him up. Didn’t want to check to see if he was okay. He just wanted out of there. He wanted to go somewhere else.
Now they held the dude hostage—one more reason he should have listened to himself. Not that it mattered, since he would still be in this mess. It wasn’t like his dad, Marty, would have listened to him, especially after seeing the werewolf.
Even now, sweating as he was, he felt odd. His hair stuck up, and the fuckers were screaming for him to run away.
He wouldn’t. That was something beaten into him as a young lad. No running. A man runs from nothing. I’d rather you dead than show that cowardice.
Still, that didn’t mean he didn’t want to. That didn’t mean his feet weren’t itching to move, his toes weren’t wiggling in his socks like there was no tomorrow. That didn’t mean that he hadn’t been able to eat all day, and nap. Hell, he’d even had trouble swallowing water. His hands had held a quiet tremor and his temper had been short. So short, in fact, that he already sported a black eye from his fa—Marty’s backhand, and an aching jaw from Jason’s.
It didn’t matter. Personal pain was something he’d long ago stopped feeling. Last time he’d ended up in the hospital because of a beating by his father, he’d been up again walking around as if he’d done nothing more than pulled a muscle, even though he’d looked like he’d fallen into a chipper.
The pain didn’t matter. It was nothing he hadn’t learnt to live with. Didn’t mean he liked it. Didn’t mean it stopped the anger that boiled inside him. Hell, he was more than sure the physical abuse fuelled it. Still, Craig didn’t particularly like looking into himself that much to see.
His head snapped to the right. His right hand tightened around the pistol, while his left was resting on the halt of his favourite dagger.
Had he really heard that?
Yes, there it was again. Movement. Calculated movement. Was it one of Marty’s men? Did it really matter? Craig smiled, the first real smile he’d had since arriving here. It didn’t matter. He’d gut any of them without a thought. Arseholes as they were.
A deep growl. A grunt in return.
Definitely, someone here that wasn’t meant to be, but it was definitely not the werewolf, or at least, it wasn’t just one.
Craig shook his head. From everything he had learnt and witnessed, werewolves were loners. They didn’t mix well with others, either their own kind or humans. They were beasts in the most basic of forms—though that was, without doubt, a taught fact. But clearly there was more than one animal running around this hut, and Craig wasn’t mistaking the sound for anything but weres.
What the fuck was going on? Was…no, but he’d seen it for himself. Seen the fights, which were worse than bum turf wars. They were savage in ways that matched their animal counterparts. So why here? Why now? Were they working together? What made this place different?
Again, everything in Craig told him to run—even as a part of him wanted to understand what was going on. He was fascinated with this. Fascinated by the possibility of what he was clearly hearing.
Shit, but he didn’t want to go further as clearly as he did, but he had to.
Did that even fucking make sense?
Light flashed in front of Craig’s eyes. He was lucky for the training along with the amount of physical crap that he didn’t go deaf or even get stunned by the force of the explosion that went off inside the house. Someone had gone in.
Several roars filled the air. The clutter and clanging of the wood being moved along with the wildness of the forest as it was disturbed by the blast made it easier for Craig to move without being noticed.
Already, three of them that Craig could see—fucking three—had moved on. They were taking the path that the rest of the team had. He should probably have taken some time to warn them, but he had started to move forward before his eyesight had cleared up.
Replacing his gun back in its holster, against his ribs, Craig scooped down and grabbed a rope that he saw in the litter of debris. It was one of the many traps he’d set up, and Craig hoped it was still attached to the tree. With another few steps, he was on the side of the werewolf that had been following the rest of them, leaving it standing between Craig and the tree. Perfect.
The beast froze when it scented that Craig was there, and that was all Craig needed. With a quick, practiced move, he had clipped the beast’s legs, pushing it forward and tangling its legs before moving up and getting its arms.
Craig fumbled at his first contact with the beast’s forearm as he grabbed him. The tingle in his own fingers had him wanting to move them so he could feel the fur on its arms. The softness pushed heat up Craig’s arms, stunning him. But it didn’t stop him. No way was he going to be vulnerable to one werewolf when clearly there were plenty of others around. Craig was sure the only reason the beast hadn’t called one of its friends back was because it was still dealing with dirt in its mouth.
That done, Craig sat back. His knee still snug in the beast’s back, he rubbed his hands along his thighs, trying to get rid of the prickles that tingled them.
Unable to help himself, Craig turned the beast over. His body straddled the animal to keep more control. He removed the gun from his holster and and settled the barrel onto its forehead. Craig wanted the beast to feel the cool metal, allowing Craig hold an illusion he couldn’t afford to break.
“Why haven’t you called them, yet?” His question startled him. Why was he asking in the first place? And why did he sound…disappointed that the beast hadn’t?
The beast blinked his eyes at Craig and his mind told him to run. He was in trouble. He needed help. He needed to pull the trigger and end the animal’s life.
Those eyes were magnificent.
Oh, God, mate, kill it. Kill it right now!
Eyes of a deep dark colour that Craig couldn’t see, but had a feeling were blue, stared up at him as if it were seeing something—someone—other than Craig. The shock and sadness had him flinching on the inside as he looked down, wanting nothing more than to be that person this beast saw.
Kill it! Now! Before it fucks up your thinking all together.
Its fur was dark, puffing up around his face, leaving only its eyes still looking human, which was the only place Craig seemed able to focus on. Eyes that wouldn’t let him go.
The hard body under his thigh seemed to be carbon made for the position. Craig holstered his weapon—Stupid arse, you need to fucking shoot it—and leant forward, letting their stomachs and chest rub while he, admittedly slowly, took his dagger from his boot. It was comfortable, it was snug, and it smelt like something Craig couldn’t, for the life of him, figure out, but he didn’t want to give it up.
“Fuck! Fuck!” He was hating himself because he couldn’t kill the animal. Hating himself because he couldn’t stay with him. Craig lifted his leg and turned the beast onto his side. A quick slice cut at the ropes around its wrists and ankles set it free with little work. Craig took in one last deep breath and that same instinct that had been telling him to run this whole time now turned on him, making him want to stay. Craig rested his forehead on the beast’s shoulder blade.
“Goodbye,” and off he went, melting into the night, knowing the beast wouldn’t be able to find him with anything but his eyes, and being as it was dark and he was all in black, that wasn’t going to happen. Craig took off for the rendezvous point.