Here’s an excerpt from Geek Chic (Bleacke Shifters 2). Enjoy! 🙂
“I can’t believe we’re now glorified skip tracers,” Beck grumbled as they stood in the stifling Florida summer afternoon heat and waited for the bus at a stop on north Nebraska Avenue. “Next thing you know, we’ll be hunting down delinquent library books.”
“Shut it,” Dewi snarled. “I’m not any happier about this than you are, but you know how it works. She’s part of the pack, he’s part of the pack, that makes it a pack problem.”
“I tell you what,” Beck said. “We catch that boy, he’s getting neutered. This is bullshit. This is, what, kid number six?”
“Seven. By six different women. That’s what pissed her off the most, that he had five other kids with five other women and didn’t tell her.”
“Yeah. He’s a numb-nuts. That wolf gets neutered.”
“Do you hear me arguing?”
“Just wanted to make sure we were singing the same tune, that’s all.”
“There will be a wolf singing soprano when I get done with him.”
“Guys,” Ken said over the two-way radio he was listening in on. “Can we please cut the castration talk? You’re making mine shrivel up.”
Beck let out a snort. “He said cut.”
Dewi held up a fist and got a bump from Beck.
Ken was riding shotgun in Badger’s truck, with Badger driving. They sat parked outside a convenience store across the street from the bus stop where Beck and Dewi stood waiting.
Their target was one James Palver. He loved making babies, but wasn’t so great at supporting them. His mistake was screwing over the baby momma of numbers one and seven, Linda Small. When girlfriend number six contacted Linda out of the blue, Linda was, needless to say, not happy.
Linda was even less happy to find out that Six had tracked down Two through Five via a vital statistics search.
Now, James’ reproductive days were about to be deep-sixed.
Along with any money he might have. Although, considering the asshole was reduced to taking a county bus to work and back, Dewi suspected there would be no blood forthcoming from that turnip anytime soon.
Well, there would be blood, and plenty of it, but there wouldn’t be any money. Not unless the worthless sack of shit hit the lotto or something, because he could barely keep a job.
Linda had petitioned Dewi, as head of the pack council for the expanded pack, to force James to face the music with her and to support his children. Well, her children. Linda didn’t care about the other five kids. And since the other mothers were humans who had no clue James had a little bit of wolf shifter in him, they weren’t Dewi’s problem. Diluted progeny with no hope of shifting weren’t Dewi’s problem, either.
As far as Dewi was concerned, Linda wasn’t the brightest bitch in the pack, especially for picking James to be the baby daddy of not one, but two of her pups. But there was no accounting for love, she supposed.
They were stuck having to track James down via the bus. They didn’t know where he was currently shacked up. Dewi didn’t want to call his parents and ask them for help because she suspected they might lie for him. And since they were living in Arizona, traveling to speak with them in person so she could Prime mojo the truth out of them would only piss her off and complicate her life.
Thus she wanted to try this first, the easy way that wouldn’t involve travel.
Right now, James was working as part of a temp construction crew that got dropped off at the same spot every day. If they were waiting for him at the drop-off point, he’d likely spot them and bolt, have the driver take him somewhere else before they’d even see him. They also wanted to decrease the number of witnesses to them grabbing him. And if James spotted them first, knew they were looking for him, it’d make it that much harder to find him the next time.
After batting around several ideas, the simplest solution was for Beck and Dewi to catch the county bus north of where James usually got on, ride it, and wait for him to board.
The bus appeared in traffic a couple of blocks to their north. Two other people sitting on the bench under the shelter stood at its approach.
“There’s our ride,” Beck muttered. “Oooh, baby. We’re stylin’.”
“Shut up,” Dewi mumbled as they walked over to queue up behind the other two passengers. “The sooner we get this done, the sooner we can go home.”
* * * *
Nami had herself about enough of this day. Now she remembered why no one else was dumb enough to say yes to switching shifts with Danice. Some of the routes were pretty good to have, decent people, relatively safe neighborhoods, that kind of stuff.
Then…there was this route.
To be fair, it wasn’t the worst route a driver could pull out of the hat, but it made Nami grateful for the regular route she had from Citrus Park to downtown and back. She’d smelled more than her fair share of unwashed homeless people, and had been hit on by more drunks, in the past several hours than she had in the past several months.
This is bullshit.
Danice hadn’t been a driver for the county as long as Nami, so it was harder for her to get the better routes. Sure, Danice could have called off and taken an unpaid leave day, but she had young children and already had a few points against her personnel record for that. The young mother didn’t need any more strikes.
I’m too nice for my own good.
When she slid the bus up to the stop where four people waited—fortunately, none of them looking unwashed or drunk—she opened the door. The first two people looked ordinary. The woman who got on behind them…
There was something about her that set Nami’s little inner watchdog on edge. She seemed okay on the surface, ready with exact change.
The guy with her…
He was built, a walking wall of muscle. And not bad looking, either, for a white guy. Blond hair and gorgeous blue eyes, had to be at least six four if he was an inch. After dropping his money in, he stopped and turned to look at her, his gaze drilling into hers, those intense blue eyes holding her hostage.
Her mouth suddenly went dry.
He stood there so long, Nami realized they were blocking traffic. “Sir,” she said after clearing her throat twice so she could finally speak. “You need to take your seat.”
She was both glad and disappointed that the seat right behind her was already occupied by a mother and young boy.
The woman who’d boarded before him called out to him, almost like a bark. “Beck.”
It seemed to break whatever trance he was in, and he slowly made his way toward the back of the bus, where the woman had taken a seat.
What. The. Heck?
Nami finally remembered to close the door and check her mirrors before pulling back into traffic.
He. Is. Trouble.
And she already had enough home-grown trouble in her life. She damn sure didn’t need to be inviting any in.
* * * *
“What the hell’s wrong with you?” Dewi whispered to Beck when he finally wedged his bulk into the plastic seat next to her.
He couldn’t pull his focus or his gaze off the driver. Gorgeous, mocha skin, and not some skinny twig, either. Short, natural hair, cut close, accentuating the gorgeous shape of her face. She smelled like jasmine, a scent he’d never really cared much about one way or another.
Closing his eyes and breathing deeply, he flared his nostrils as the air conditioning carried faint traces of her scent to him.
His eyes popped open.
Dewi poked his shoulder. “Hey. Earth to Beck.”
They were only blocks from where James Palver would catch the bus after being dropped off with the rest of his work crew.
And the woman driving the bus was his mate.
Ignoring Dewi, Beck stood and walked to the front of the bus. The driver glanced at him in the mirror. “Sir, you need to take your seat while the bus is moving.”
He grabbed hold of a pole right behind her. “Are you married?” he quietly asked.
She didn’t look back at him, but her gaze briefly flashed in the rearview mirror again. “Sir, please, take your seat.”
“Are you single?”
“Sir, you need to sit—”
“Are you gay?”
“Please, just answer me.”
“Sit yourself down now, sir, before I have to evict you from this bus.”
“That wasn’t an answer.”
The more she didn’t answer, the more of her fear he felt, and the more he reacted to her. In his gut, he knew she was single, and straight.
And if she was single, that meant she wouldn’t be for long. Not once he claimed her.
“Beck!” Dewi barked from her seat.
His head snapped around, and if it wasn’t for the fact there were about fifteen other passengers on the bus at that moment, he would have bared his canines at Dewi.
Well, that and the fact that Dewi was a Prime Alpha and, despite their size disparity, she could easily kick his ass.
And, technically, she was his boss.
“What’s going on?” Ken asked in his ear over the radio.
Beck walked back three seats, to the first empty one on the opposite side of the bus from the driver, where he sat, on the edge, ready to pounce.
He was aware of Dewi walking up and sitting just behind him, where she jabbed him in the back of the shoulder.
“What. The. Fuck?” she whispered.
Jaw clenched and struggling to remain in control, he ignored her.
He got it.
Now, he totally understood why Dewi had done what she’d done when she claimed Ken. He’d wanted to blame her actions on a lack of self-control on her part, a slippage he’d never seen her exhibit before.
It hummed through his veins, with every beat of his heart. With every pulse of blood as it coursed through his body.
* * * *
Nami didn’t know what the guy’s issue was, but she hoped he wasn’t going to be a problem. It was days like this she wished they’d let drivers carry weapons. She did have a canister of pepper spray on her personal key ring, which was easily within her grasp.
She didn’t want to use it on this guy if she didn’t have to. He was hunky, but there was just something about him she couldn’t put her finger on. It wasn’t even like he was undressing her with his eyes. It was like he was making sweet and sexy love to her right there with his mind.
And while she’d never admit it, she liked it. There was something downright animalistic, hungry in his gaze, the way he visually devoured her.
A pleasant shiver rippled down her spine.
She pulled up to the next stop and slid over to the curb before opening the door. Five guys got on. The last one stopped halfway up the steps, raising his nose and apparently sniffing the air as he scanned the bus. His eyes bugged, wide in fright before he turned, bolting down the steps and out the door.
“Shit,” the strange woman said as she jumped from her seat. She slapped the guy with her on the shoulder. “Come on.” She shoved her way down the aisle past the four guys who’d just got on and jumped off the bus without even taking the steps before she was running.
The man with her stood, hesitated at the door, then whirled around. Before Nami could react, he leaned in and kissed her, long and hard and with enough sauciness she nearly let her foot off the brake. His hand cupped the back of her neck, and something about his scent, like cinnamon and freshly split oak, penetrated her to the depths of her soul.
His thumb stroked her cheek. “Mine,” he whispered, even though she didn’t see his lips move, and she nearly creamed her panties right there.
Then, just like that, he turned and jumped off the bus, following the woman, who apparently was chasing the guy who’d run off.
Part of her wanted to shut the bus down and run after him. He couldn’t just lay an earth-shattering kiss like that on her and then take off without so much as a how-you-doin’.
And part of her wanted to tear after him and rip him a new one for taking liberties with her like that. Just before she kissed him again.
On that thought, she finally closed the door with a trembling hand and reluctantly pulled away from the curb.