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Unwanted Appeal

Hidden Wolves book 2.5

by Kaje Harper

This is a Hidden Wolves short story 2.5. It follows, and contains spoilers for, Unexpected Demands - Hidden Wolves Book 2.

Werewolf packs traditionally stay aloof from one another, but gossip still spreads like wildfire. Whispers and rumors about Simon and his mate-bonded male lover, and the pack's experiences with human were-hunters, are still making the rounds. Aaron, the Alpha of Minneapolis West, would love to see his pack's fame fade into the past. But the arrival of two strange wolves makes it clear that for some outsiders, his pack is still considered a pariah, or a threat. For others, it has unwanted appeal.

15,000 words

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Excerpt:

Aaron got off the bed and came to stand beside Zach, staring down at him. He reached out a long, elegant finger and swiped a drip of cum off Zach's ear. Zach watched through his one open eye. There was nothing more gorgeous in all the world than Aaron Tremaine, muscled and dark and supremely, confidently naked, looking down at him with the heat of possession in his eyes. Aaron raised his hand to his own mouth, slowly licked the droplet off his finger, and the salt-slick taste spread between them over the wide-open bond. Then he reached back down... and gave Zach's ear a sharp flick. “Rise and shine. No time to waste.”

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Zach jerked his head away and rolled over. A moment ago he'd have said he wouldn't be able to move for at least an hour, but Aaron's command and his own curiosity were working wonders. He waved a hand at Aaron. Aaron gave it a pro-forma glare, but then gripped his wrist and pulled him up to a sitting position. And instead of letting go, he raised Zach's wrist to his mouth and pressed lips and tongue to it. Zach shuddered in a wholly involuntary response.

Ignoring the ache in his well-fucked ass, he slid to the edge of the bed and swung his legs out. “So what do you think Michael wants?”

Aaron frowned, and Zach felt the bond between them thin slightly. “You know what I know.”

“Which is sweet F- all.”

“Pretty much.” Aaron sighed. “We'll meet him in an hour, and find out. At least, I'll meet him. You only will if you get your cute ass into the shower and scrub well. Use the herbal soap.”

“Yes, oh my lord and master,” Zach quipped as he stood.

Aaron used the loose grip he still had on Zach's wrist to haul him in for a long, hard kiss. “And don't you forget it. Get clean.”

Zach really wanted to linger under the water, enjoying the heat on abused muscles, and the way the shower brought the scents of Aaron's body to his nose. But he was a werewolf, which meant those muscles would be fine very soon on their own, and he'd been with Aaron long enough to know that the threat of being left behind was a real one. He scrubbed up quickly, wrinkling his nose at the eucalyptus and rosemary of the soap. By the time he was done, he smelled like a health-food store, and not like the guy the supposedly-straight pack Alpha was fucking. At least the condom had helped some - his skin and hair were easier to clean than the inside of his ass. Mission accomplished.

He toweled off fast, ran to his room for a T-shirt and jeans, and hurried down the stairs. Aaron was just tying his second shoe, keys to his Hummer in hand. Zach shoved his feet into his sneakers without bothering with laces and gave Aaron a bright grin. “Ready.”

The April sunshine as they pulled out of the garage made him squint, so he turned his eyes toward Aaron instead. The Alpha drove the same way he did everything else, with a smooth easy confidence that looked almost ordinary, until it needed to become something else. The same way he fucked too. Zach squirmed in his seat, pressing down to enjoy the fading ache in his butt.

“Still sore?” Aaron asked without glancing his way.

“Not sore enough.”

“Some other time.” Aaron's mouth quirked in a tiny smile of anticipation. “Now quit fidgeting. You're being annoying.”

“Sorry, Alpha.”

They turned westward, heading out of the Twin Cities toward North Dakota. Not that they planned to hit the state line, but still the scenery was pretty much flat and boring already, suburban tract housing springing up between flat fields and clumps of oak and poplar. As they got further out, the houses became smaller and more weathered, spread apart and surrounded by outbuildings. The fields expanded, brown and bare with plowing, or fuzzed green with the early spring plantings.

Aaron's cell phone beeped, and he frowned. At the next dirt road he pulled over, checked a text message and pressed speed dial to make a call.

“Yes, Alpha?” The deference in Mark's voice was clear to Zach's acute hearing.

“Just a heads-up, Second. Here are the coordinates for this meeting.” Aaron recited a GPS location.

“Do you want me to send back-up?”

“No. I still trust Michael. But you should know where we are, if anything blows up.”

“I don't like it.”

“I know. I'll call when we're done.”

Mark said just a bit louder, knowing Zach would hear him, “Zach, you watch the Alpha's back, you hear me?”

Aaron snapped, “The day I need that, you can just go ahead and bury me.”

“With due respect, Alpha,” Mark ground out, “No one has eyes in the back of their head, not even you.”

“I'm on it,” Zach said, clearly enough to carry over Aaron's cell.

Aaron gave him a cool look, but just said, “Later, Mark,” and hung up.

COLLAPSE

About the Author

I get asked about my name a lot. It's not something exotic, though. “Kaje” is pronounced just like “cage” – it’s an old nickname.

I live in Minnesota, where the two seasons are Snow-removal and Road-repair, where the mosquito is the state bird, and where winter can be breathtakingly beautiful. Minnesota’s a kindly, quiet (if sometimes chilly) place and it’s home now.

I’ve been writing for far longer than I care to admit (*whispers – forty years*), mostly for my own entertainment. I mainly publish M/M romance (with added mystery, fantasy, historical, SciFi…) I also have a few Young Adult stories released under the pen name Kira Harp.

My husband finally convinced me that after all that time writing for fun, I really should submit something, somewhere. My first professionally published book, Life Lessons, came out from MLR Press in May 2011. I have a weakness for closeted cops with honest hearts, and teachers who speak their minds, and I had fun writing the four novels and three freebie short stories in the series. I’ve been delighted by the reception Mac and Tony have received.

I now have a good-sized backlist in ebooks and print, both free and professionally published. A complete list with links can be found on my Books page.
I also have  an author page on Goodreads where I do a lot of book reviews. You can find me to chat there– I hang out on Goodreads a lot because I moderate the  Goodreads YA LGBT Books group there. I also post free short YA stories on that group, more than 50 of them so far. Or find me on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/KajeHarper


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