Born in a Small Town (Pattons Daughters #4) Any Time, Any Place (Billionaire Builders #2)

Those words might not have rankled so much if it hadn’t been for the dominance that coated them. He was actually trying to pressure her into yielding to him, pulling the Beta act on her. Jerk. Haven’t we already established that you have no control over me? This isn’t about trying to control you. It’s about keeping you safe from a vicious dog that would happily eat you. Now you’re just being melodramatic. I’m making up for your lack of a flight response. She rolled her eyes, losing her tolerance and not prepared to let her mate try to dominate her into giving in to him. It hurt that he would actually do that. Step aside. No, I will not let you near some traumatized animal that could easily go crazy and attack you! Realizing what he’d just said, Dante squeezed his eyes shut. By insinuating that the dog behind him was beyond help and could easily snap and hurt people, he was insinuating that things were just as hopeless for Jaime’s wolf. In truth, he didn’t really believe that about her wolf, but his words had given an altogether different impression, and he hadn’t missed the pain that flashed across his mate’s face. He hadn’t had to see it, he’d felt it. Jaime— With anger dripping from every word, she spoke in a flat voice. Move out of my way and let me do my job. She shouldn’t really be surprised that Dante had never believed her wolf could fully heal, but it hurt all the same, because she had wanted to believe him. Knowing that nothing he could say would make her budge on this now, Dante reluctantly stepped aside. He’d hurt her enough already, and he didn’t want to push her further and hurt her again. But if that dog made any threatening moves, Dante would be on it before it could blink. Blocking out Dante and shoving aside her emotions to deal with later, Jaime passed him and took the leash that Riley—who, along with Ivy, was scowling at Dante—was holding out. Jaime had been in this situation enough times to know what to do. Keeping a safe distance between her and the dog, which was in a challenging stance and baring his teeth, she knelt down. Towering over him would make him feel intimidated, and that would negate her chances of making him see her as no threat. She spoke to him in a calm voice, hoping it would reassure him and that her sense of calm would, in turn, help him calm. She wasn’t fazed by his growls, as she knew that more often than not, growls were warnings as opposed to acts of aggression. Still, not heeding those warnings could result in a bite, and she didn’t want one of those. She’d been bitten a few times in the past. When the bulldog had locked onto her hand, it had hurt like a motherfucker. Wanting the dog to understand that she posed no threat, she avoided eye contact, as that was something he would interpret as confrontational. Digging her hand into her pocket of her coveralls, she fished out a few of the dog treats she kept there. She threw some to the side of him and waited. After sniffing the air, he eventually nibbled on one of the treats. Once he’d eaten each of those treats, she tossed a few more. Turning to the side to communicate that she wasn’t challenging him, she slowly inched forward. After only a few feet, she stopped and tossed him some more treats. She waited patiently as he ate them, and then gently patted the ground before holding out her hand, encouraging him to come to her. At this point he had stopped growling, but his posture was still alert. After several minutes, he seemed to adjust to her presence and decide that she wasn’t a threat, because he began to approach her. Jaime stayed totally still as he sniffed the back of her hand. Only when he seemed calm did she, still talking to him in a soothing voice, slowly take the leash from her other pocket. Without gripping his collar, she simply clipped the leash to it, all the while speaking quietly to him. Although she wanted to stroke him, she avoided it. There was no way of knowing whether he had what Ivy called hot spots—places he disliked being touched that could set him off. Jaime’s entire body was a hot spot right now. If Dante touched her even once, she’d kill him. As if he sensed that, he made no attempts to touch her or speak to her as they worked the rest of their shift. In fact, it wasn’t until they were almost on pack territory in the SUV that he reached across and placed his hand on her thigh. By that point, she had calmed down enough not to shake him off, especially since she could feel how mad he was at himself. You know I wasn’t talking about your wolf. Really? she drawled with skepticism heavy in her voice. I admit that my choice of words was bad and the whole thing came out wrong, but I do not think your wolf is beyond help. Although she sensed that he was speaking the truth, it didn’t improve Jaime’s mood much. This isn’t just about what you said. Yeah, what you said hurt. But it’s more than that. Since the very beginning, it’s been me who’s been giving all the support in this relationship. You lap it up, but whenever I need you to back up me on something, you don’t. You wanted me to support you approaching a clearly dangerous dog? She could see that he was genuinely missing the point. If he had been anyone else, she would have mistaken his response for pure ignorance. But it was like he once told her: he’d been on his own for so long that sometimes he could be self-centered without even realizing it. I expected, no matter how much your instincts were telling you to protect me, for you to acknowledge and appreciate that I was doing my job. He didn’t respond until they were through the perimeter gate of pack territory. You were putting yourself at risk, and that’s not acceptable to me. In a mockingly sweet voice, she said, I’m sorry. After all, your job isn’t at all dangerous, so I have no right to expect you to let me do mine without trying to hold me back and get in my way. That’s different. Why? Because it’s you? Yes. No. It was more yes than no, if he was honest with himself. Not that he was in any rush to tell Jaime that, though he suspected she already knew through their bond. Sometimes that link was a pain in his ass. You have no sense of self-preservation, so is it really any wonder that I try to protect you? But you didn’t try to protect me today. You tried to dominate me into doing what you wanted. How is that fair? For a minute there, you were Beta, and I was just a packmate. Not Beta female, not your mate, just another pack member to whom you give orders. His expression told her that now he got her point.

And in Bob’s case, who knew just how much magic had been done on him over the years? There were Saylor’s spells, whoever this boy was—and what had he meant by Saylor’s boss? Alexander? Some other Ephor before they’d all been wiped out?I reminded myself to tell Blythe not to even attempt a mind wipe here. Lord only knew what it might do to Bob after this much magic. I wasn’t even going to risk Ryan’s magic rose lip balm stuff.

Sophia (Vampires in America #4)

What did this boy look like, if you don’t mind my asking? Blythe said, sweet as pie, and Bob’s hazy eyes shot to her.And then, just as abruptly, her smile dropped.There, toward the back of the book, were the jagged edges of several ripped-out pages.

The Seduction Of Elliot McBride (Mackenzies & McBrides #5)

Seemed Dante had found what he was looking for after all.AFTER ALL the taxidermy at Saylor’s old house, I didn’t think I’d ever want to eat again, but Blythe and Bee were both hungry, so we stopped in a Mexican place in the middle of what passed for downtown.

As soon as we were situated with sweet tea and chips, Blythe pulled the journal out of her bag, and I tried not to wince as the leather hit a drop of salsa on the laminate table. What is it? I asked, and Bee leaned farther over the table, trying to see what Blythe was reading.

A book, Blythe answered, and one of the chips cracked in my fingers.We’d been given free rent for exactly three months. Estelle thought it was overly generous and insisted on paying for utilities. Me...I thought it wasn’t enough after they’d tried to separate us.

A week ago, Estelle and I had a Skype conversation with Akin’s family and we sat in respectful silence for the dead pilot. We answered their questions about his resting place, and they granted peace by assuring us they didn’t hold us responsible. Akin had flown in worse weather and survived. It was just one of those things.The newspapers continued to hound us for interviews and the paperwork required to reinstate everything was boring and frustrating. The lawyer was insistent on going through Estelle’s singing assets and advised her to arrange a pre-nup.

Elixir (Covenant #3.5)

Needless to say, she stormed out of his office.I wouldn’t care if she did ask me to sign a pre-nup. I had no intention of taking her money. But I also had no intention of ever letting her go, so that problem was void.

It didn’t help that every day Coco was stressed. She hated concrete and metal and plastic. She hated shoes and underwear and screeched if, God forbid, we ever tried to wash her blonde ringlets with strawberry-scented shampoo.It had to be coconut or nothing else.

She refused to swim in the apartment’s tiny communal pool, and rightfully so after her skin erupted with a rash from chlorine. However, the moment we put her in the ocean (even though it was so much colder than our island), she transformed into the happiest child imaginable.She’d build sandcastles and collect shells and roll around until she was covered in golden grains. She was at home on the beach because that was where she was born. She was birthed to the sea. She belonged to the sea.

How would she ever adapt to the bullying world of cities?How would she cope with schools and being different?

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