When his boss orders Elliott Samuels to come the Moon pack bar little does he know Anthony’s plans include handing him off to Parker, the pack security officer. Parker takes one look at the slim accountant and knows he’s found the submissive mate of his dreams. Will the two be a love match or will outside forces tear them apart?
Elliott Samuels looked at the big metal door with the wolf-head knocker and balked. There was no sign on the outside or even darkened windows to indicate this was a nightclub, just a steel door. The lack of a line or roped-off area made him extremely nervous. He almost ran.
However, Anthony had asked him to come. Ordered him, really. He couldn’t say no to Anthony. He didn’t know anyone who could. Something about the man made Elliott want to make Anthony happy, made him want to do whatever Anthony asked.
No matter how ridiculous.
Like wearing leather pants and a copper-colored mesh shirt. Hell, even the boots were an Anthony requirement. There was nothing so embarrassing as having your new boss take you shopping and then demand your attendance at a bar… club… whatever.
He wasn’t even sure it was legal for Anthony to do that. Of course, he wouldn’t be the one bringing it up.
He’d met the man’s mate.
Tentatively, he took the wolf knocker and banged it a few times.
Immediately, the door opened to reveal a tall, lean man with short black hair and massive shoulders. Cool grass-green eyes looked him up and down. “Yes?”
Nerves had Elliott shaking his head back and forth, more of a spasm than a voluntary movement. “Um, A-Anthony invited me.”
Those green eyes examined him intently. “Samuels?” He knew what the guy was implying, but he didn’t have a pack. He’d never had a pack.
“I’m half-wolf. No pack.” He wasn’t ashamed, no matter how piercing the bouncer’s gaze.
“Can you shift?”
Elliott didn’t know why it mattered, but he nodded. “Full independent change.”
Some half-wolves couldn’t. Couldn’t shift or involuntarily shifted under a full moon, their control not as refined as their full wolf counterparts, but not Elliott. His wolf was a quiet, submissive creature. It had to be coaxed out beneath the moon, but it could be coaxed.
“Excellent.” The man gave him a smile that could only be called… wolfish.
Elliott had the dizzying sensation he was the prey in this scenario, and he wasn’t entirely certain he disliked the idea.
The bouncer pulled a phone from the clip on his low riding black jeans. Elliott blinked at how low those jeans dipped. He discreetly turned his head so he wouldn’t be caught staring inappropriately.
“I need a replacement.” The bouncer’s voice, low and pleasant, slid through Elliott’s body like an aural aphrodisiac.
Damn, the bouncer flipped all of Elliott’s buttons and lit up the scoreboard. Elliott willed himself not to harden. The leather pants he’d squeezed his body into left nothing to the imagination. They might not ride as low as the hot bouncer’s jeans, but they were definitely a snug fit. If he became hard, his lack of underwear would be apparent to all. Damn Anthony. He’d convinced Elliott to do without his boxers, saying it would give him unattractive lines.
He might have to reconsider his current place of employment.
“Coming,” a scratchy female voice said over the speakerphone, pulling Elliott’s attention back to the bouncer instead of the condition of his cock.
The gorgeous wolf hung up and pinned Elliott with those stunning green eyes. “It will be just a moment.” He flashed a wicked smile. “Like what you see?”
Elliott swallowed nervously. He’d seen guys beat up for less. He hoped Anthony’s name would at least provide some protection.
“Sorry, I-I didn’t mean to stare.” He could feel his cheeks burning with embarrassment, one of the problems with having pale skin. His mother always said he’d inherited his great-grandmother’s Irish complexion, but since the woman died before Elliott’s birth, he had to take her word for it. Elliott only had a few grainy photographs to support the theory.
The bouncer chuckled. “If I didn’t want people looking, I wouldn’t wear them so low. I’m Parker.” He held out one massive paw to Elliott, who cautiously took the hand offered. Elliott relaxed with relief when the larger man carefully shook with Elliott. Apparently, Parker wasn’t one of those men who felt manlier by crushing everyone’s hand to prove he was stronger.
“I’m here.” A pretty woman, who was even shorter than Elliott’s five-nine, walked up the stairs. She took one look at Elliott and gave a wide smile. “I’m Shara. Who are you?”
“This is Elliott,” Parker said, blocking Elliott with his larger frame before she could offer her hand. “Anthony invited him.”
“Hmm. And it takes a personal guard to escort him to Anthony?” Her eyes were brilliant blue, sparkling with mischief.
“Just give me fifteen minutes,” Parker growled before turning back to Elliott. “Come with me.”
Elliott resisted any possible smartass response that involved coming and the hot black-haired man leading the way with his tight, round ass. That didn’t stop him from looking, though.
* * * *
Parker glanced back at the pretty, auburn-haired wolf and bit back a growl. He searched his mind for the perfect present for Anthony. The man was going to get a big reward for bringing Parker his mate—unless he intended Elliott for someone else. Then they were going to have words.
Unfortunately, even if he could make himself attack Anthony, the man would fry his ass before he took the first lunge. Sometimes, there were disadvantages to having a non-wolf alpha mate, even if he was nice to look at.
Glancing back at the pretty, pretty man, he decided that sometimes there were even bigger advantages. Elliott was small by wolf standards, probably due to the half-wolf blood, but the man had beautiful reddish-brown hair, cut in finger-tantalizing layers, and clear blue eyes like the sky on a perfect summer day. The man’s sleek and compact body hinted at a six-pack beneath his extremely sexy fitted shirt.
Parker concentrated on going down the remaining stairs without falling on his ass. He wouldn’t make a very good impression if he stumbled down them while trying to entice the man with his sexiness.
He swiped his card at the bottom of the landing and opened the door.
“There’s a lot of security here,” Elliott remarked.
Parker shrugged. “It’s not only a club; it’s also our home. Well, for a lot of the pack. I have a house I inherited from my mother.”
“What about your father?”
“He died when I was young; my parents weren’t mates.” He didn’t want to go into the depressing details of his family, so he was relieved when they entered the main room of the club.
The pulse of the music hit them as they walked through the door. Parker scanned the room. He knew they’d find Anthony in the largest concentration of people. A massive crowd filled the second level, and he saw the dark head of his alpha, Silver, above the group.
“Come on.” Parker wrapped an arm around the smaller man to protect him from the jostling crowd.
“Parker, what have you got there?” Mikel, one of the local vampires, sauntered over and blocked their path. The predatory gleam in his eyes grew as he took in Elliott’s outfit and self-conscious demeanor.
Parker pulled the smaller wolf closer, baring his teeth at the vampire. “He’s a friend of Anthony’s. I’m taking him over to the alpha mate.”
Mikel gave a sly smile, flashing a bit of fang. “I know how busy you are. How about I take him over to Anthony so you can get back to work?”
A low growl rolled up Parker’s throat as his wolf sensed a possible contender for his mate. The bestial side of him wanted to tear out the vampire’s throat and remove any possible threat to his mating.
He was startled out of his ire by Elliott stroking his stomach, soothing him out of his fury. “I can see Anthony from here,” Elliott said. “I’m sure I can make it over there on my own.”
“Elliott.” Anthony’s voice cut through the crowd as the alpha mate spotted the redhead from across the room. Parker figured Anthony’s voice must be magically transmitted, because how else could they hear the man over the noise in the club?
Elliott waved to the alpha mate.
“See you later, Mikel,” Parker said, moving them away from the vampire with an arm around Elliott’s waist, not giving the smaller man the chance to say goodbye. The less the half-wolf talked to Mikel, the less chance of Parker starting an interspecies war.
* * * *
Elliott couldn’t help smiling at Anthony when his boss waved him over. Being hailed by Anthony was like being acknowledged by the most popular guy in school, an event he’d never experienced in real life. Being home-schooled by his overprotective mother had prepared him little for the real world—as a human or a wolf.
Following Parker, they headed in Anthony’s direction. There was a glow about the blond that always made Elliott happier to be near him. As Anthony’s accountant, he tried to keep his crush to himself—he knew he had no chances there—but it still gave him a flush of excitement whenever he saw Anthony.
Anthony stood when the pair approached. Leaning forward, he gave Elliott a hug. “I’m glad you could make it.”
He suppressed a shudder of excitement at the close contact with the blond, not missing the cold glare he received from the alpha over his boss’ shoulder.
Oblivious to his mate’s challenging look, Anthony released Elliott and beckoned the alpha closer.
“Silver, remember Elliott, the new accountant I hired?” Anthony asked.
Silver nodded but didn’t offer his hand. Elliott tipped his head slightly to one side to show respect, but not subservience, since he wasn’t technically a member of the Moon pack. He was Anthony’s employee. Rumor had it they had another guy who did the Pack books.
“Greetings, Alpha,” Elliott greeted Anthony’s mate.
Silver lost some of his glower, the customary greeting apparently easing his concern about another man standing so close to his mate. As if the rock gracing Anthony’s finger and the mating collar weren’t enough to mark the man as taken. Not to mention, Anthony didn’t look at anyone with even a fraction of the degree of adoration he bestowed on the huge, dark-haired werewolf. The beautiful man was smitten, and clearly, based on the alpha’s growly manner and lavish gifts, his feelings were returned. Silver might be all hard muscles and scary power, but the look in his eyes when he gazed at Elliott’s boss was enough to make even the sappiest romantic happy.
Anthony picked up his phone. It must’ve been on vibrate, because Elliott hadn’t heard it ring. A look at the display had his employer giving him a regretful look.
“I’ve got to get to Hotel Paradise. The manager just texted me. Apparently, there’s an issue involving a dryad and a wolf. I’m sorry to interrupt our plans.”
Elliott shrugged, trying to mask his disappointment. It wasn’t Anthony’s fault there was a problem at one of his hotels.
“That’s okay. Since I’m all dressed up, I’ll get myself a drink and hang around here for a while.” It wouldn’t hurt to get to know the local wolves. He would eventually have to join a pack if he wanted to mate with any of the werewolves in the area, and this bar was considered one of the best places to find a supernatural mate.
* * * *
“Parker, would you mind making sure Elliott has a good time?” Anthony smoothly made it sound as if the wolf would be doing him a favor when they both knew Parker was waiting for the chance to pounce.
“Of course. I’d be happy to.” If by a good time, Anthony meant tying the smaller man up and fucking him within an inch of his life.
Anthony smiled, as if he knew exactly what Parker was thinking. He didn’t say anything, but he gave Elliott a kiss on the cheek before turning to his mate. “Are you coming, sweet peach?”
Silver shook his head at the nickname. “Of course,” the alpha replied. He held out his arm like a gentleman in one of those old black and white movies Parker’s mother used to make him watch.
With a nod to everyone else, Anthony left the room escorted by the alpha like a debutante going to her first ball—if you overlooked the fact the debutante was in skintight leather pants and a transparent gauzy shirt.
“Do you think he’ll change before he gets there?” Elliott asked, smiling as he watched the pair leave.
Parker laughed. “I think his mate will tear his clothes off before he leaves the limo, and he’ll be forced to put others on. Don’t worry; they keep extra clothing in all the cars for Anthony. Silver’s not known for his patience.”
Elliott blushed adorably. Parker would like to see if the rest of Elliott’s skin marked as beautifully.
His phone beeped. “Parker, are you returning?” Shara’s voice carried through the line with an edge of irritation, reminding Parker that not everyone knew of the change of plans.
“Shara, I’ve been reassigned by the alpha mate. I’ll send someone to help you.” He turned off the phone before she could reply, fairly certain he didn’t want to hear her response.
Dillon, Ben, and Thomas walked by, the trio laughing as they traversed the busy dance floor.
“Hey, Dillon,” he called out.
Dillon scowled over at Parker. Obviously not a man who liked having his conversation with his lovers interrupted. “What?”
“I need someone to help Shara. Can you do it?”
Dillon looked at Ben, who shook his head no. “Sorry,” Dillon said without a trace of regret. “Boss says no. He made reservations and everything.”
Parker eyed the nice suits and smiles and knew he was beaten. He sent a mock glare to Ben. His friend shrugged and blew Parker a playful kiss. Thomas wrapped a possessive arm around the smaller man as the trio walked off.
“Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do,” he called after them.
Dillon gave Parker the finger behind Ben’s back, not bothering to turn around.
“Are they all together?” Elliott asked as the trio walked away.
“Yes. Do you have a problem with that?” Parker hoped the new wolf wasn’t uptight. It would ruin all of the plans he was making for him.
Elliott shrugged. “Only in that I’m-incredibly-jealous kind of way. I can’t even find one guy, and that wolf has two hot mates.”
Parker grinned. “Oh, I think you can find one.” He trailed a finger down Elliott’s neck, pleased when the smaller man shivered beneath his touch.
Dare walked past.
“Hey, kitty,” he called out.
Someone smacked Parker in the back of the head from behind.
“Show some respect to my mate,” Steven growled.
Dare laughed as he walked back to the pair. He gave Elliott a curious glance but didn’t say anything.
“I’ve got about an hour left on my shift; could you cover for me? Anthony asked me to entertain Elliott here. I tried Dillon, but Ben won’t let him. You’re not working tonight, are you?” Parker asked.
“No, and he’s still not,” Steven said.
“Hey, sugar, settle down,” Dare said, running a soothing hand over his mate’s back. “I can spare an hour to help out a friend.”
A rush of relief eased Parker’s tense muscles. He didn’t want Elliott to slip through his fingers while he manned the door. If he didn’t know Steven would rip off his head, he’d give the tiger shifter a big hug.
Dare saw the phone in his hand. “Are you on door duty?”
“Yeah. Shara is down below, but when we work together, I put her behind the second door. That way she doesn’t have to deal with the creeps.”
“Sounds good.” Dare took the phone with a smile. “Besides, I like Shara. She smells good.”
Steven growled. “She better not smell that good.”
Laughing, Dare gave his mate a quick kiss on the lips. “Nah, I think it’s her perfume. Smells like vanilla. Always makes me want a big bag of cookies.”
“Wait for me at the bar, and I’ll make it worth your while,” Dare said, batting his eyelashes in an exaggerated flirt.
“I’ll make sure you do.” Steven stepped forward. Plunging his fingers into Dare’s hair, he yanked the tall tiger shifter into his arms. Before Dare could speak, Steven took Dare’s mouth in a kiss so primal Parker could almost see the pheromones spiking the air.
Damn. That was hot!
“Keep that up and we’ll have to sell tickets,” Parker said, shifting his stance to accommodate his growing problem.
“I’d buy one,” Elliott piped up. The little wolf’s eyes glazed over, and he licked his lips as if he were the one receiving the kiss.
The pair separated, Dare heading to the stair door and Steven to the bar.
“Which one has you all in a lather?” Parker asked, curious about what Elliott found arousing. Personally, he’d always wanted to stroke the big kitty.
“Both of them.” Elliott blushed. “I mean… them together. You could tell it wasn’t just lust. They really care for each other. The wolf? You called him Steven?”
“When he grabbed his mate, I could see his hold was gentle. If Dare wanted to escape, he could have. I could tell Dare let his lover control the kiss when he didn’t have to.”
“They’re newly bonded; they mated just last week.” Parker shook his head to snap out of the melancholy of not being mated. After all, it might have taken a while, but now he had a potential mate of his own. He just had to concentrate on not scaring the little wolf off. “Let me buy you a drink?”
Elliott nodded. “Okay, but charge it to Anthony’s account. It’s his fault I’m here.”
Parker laughed. “Deal.”
Elliott looked across the table at Parker. The other wolf was appealing if you liked big, handsome men with midnight black hair and gorgeous green eyes.
“Why did Anthony pick you for me?” Elliott asked.
Parker set down his beer with a thump. “What makes you think he picked me for you?”
Elliott laughed. “Anthony may be a brilliant architect, but subtle, he’s not.”
Parker shrugged. “He knows I’m looking for a mate, and he thought we’d be a good match.”
“What do you think?”
“I think he’s right.”
“What?” Parker couldn’t have looked more surprised if Elliott had stripped down naked and danced on the table.
“The only way to find out if we’re compatible is to test it. Kiss me, and we can see if we’re wasting our time here or if I should let you have me.” Elliott mentally reviewed his statement and nodded, pleased at his sound logic.
“What makes you think I want you?” Parker asked in a low, growling voice.
Elliott shrugged and gathered his nerve. “Because if you usually get that excited over a beer you’d be an alcoholic.” Elliott pointed at the obvious erection tightening Parker’s jeans.
Parker’s laugh, loud and delighted, lifted a weight off of Elliott’s chest he hadn’t known he’d been carrying. He wanted the other wolf to like him. Having never socialized with a pack before, he didn’t know much about pack dynamics. He only knew what he’d gleaned from the internet, and most of those sources didn’t even believe in werekin.
The invitation from Anthony had been a dream.
When he’d first been hired, he hadn’t known about Anthony’s alpha mate status. In this economy, getting a job straight from college had been enough of a reward. When Anthony had invited Elliott to come and meet members of his pack, Elliott thought all of his dreams had come true. Even the wardrobe Anthony had insisted he buy hadn’t dimmed the thrill of being around so many pack members. Hell, if Parker kissed badly, he’d at least have made a new shifter friend.
God knew he needed them.
Too shy to make friends in college, and having spent his formative years beneath his mother’s thumb, Elliott had never lived life to its fullest. Now, with college behind him, he was ready to start.
Distracted by his thoughts, he almost jumped when Parker grabbed his seat and pulled him closer. The waxed floor allowed the chair to slide smoothly over to the larger man.
“Hello there,” Parker said. Heat and raw need flared in his eyes.
“Hello.” Elliott swallowed, trying to get moisture to his suddenly dry throat.
“If you don’t want to kiss me, you don’t have to,” Parker said.
“I-I want to.” Oh, how he wanted to.
“Good. As long as we’re on the same page.” Parker grabbed Elliott’s shirt and yanked him closer. Capturing Elliott’s mouth with his own, Parker devoured him. Heat poured from Parker like molten lava, so hot Elliott wouldn’t be surprised if parts of his body started to melt. When Parker broke off so they could breathe, Elliott said the first thing that went through his mind.
“Well, you’re not a bad kisser.”
Parker froze. “Did you expect me to be?”
Blushing, he tried to reassure the other wolf. “No, I was just thinking that if our kissing didn’t work out, we could still be friends. But it did. I mean, we are kissing compatible, don’t you think?”
Parker nodded. “Most definitely.” The dark wolf glanced around the bar. “Want to take this somewhere more private?”
A herd of butterflies stampeded Elliott’s stomach. He could almost feel dozens of wings fluttering madly about. He nodded weakly. “Yes, I would.”
Instead of jumping up from his chair and dragging Elliott off, Parker tilted his head and examined Elliott thoroughly as if trying to peek inside his soul. “We don’t have to do anything you don’t want to.”
“No. No, I do.” Elliott wiped his sweating hands on his leather pants, cursing silently that he wasn’t wearing his usual denim. “I-it’s been a while.” Like never, but that wasn’t information he was going to share with the man looking at him like he was the world’s best treat.
Parker’s eyes took on a speculative gleam. “Have you ever been with anyone?”
Elliott sighed. He wouldn’t blame the gorgeous wolf if he cut his losses and ran. What kind of loser reached Elliott’s age still pure?
He shook his head. Not wanting to see Parker’s expression, he kept his gaze on the floor, waiting for the sound of a chair moving to indicate the other wolf had left. No one wanted a man in his mid-twenties who’d barely been kissed.
The tension grew when Parker didn’t move.
Elliott glanced up.
Parker’s green eyes glowed. “That’s the sexiest thing I’ve ever heard,” the other wolf said. His voice went so deep it took Elliott a moment to decipher the rumble as actual words.
Swallowing, he made sure he understood. “You mean you’re not turned off?”
Parker grabbed Elliott’s right hand and pressed it to his crotch. A firm bulge met Elliott’s curious fingers. “Does that feel turned off to you?”
Elliott shook his head.
“Let’s go to my place where I can show you properly.”
He let out a squeak as Parker ruthlessly yanked him out of his seat and dragged him through the door and up the stairs.
“Have a good night.” Dare’s amused voice followed them out the door.
“Hey, slow down.” Elliott’s feet slid on the parking lot gravel, making him stumble.
“Oh, sorry.” Parker shortened his long strides. The hand on Elliott’s wrist went from vice grip to gentle hold. “You’ve got me so worked up I can hardly think.”
Although Parker’s grip was lighter, Elliott was still being inexorably dragged toward a red pickup. He heard the click of the lock disengaging seconds before Parker pulled the door open.
Elliott dug in his heels.
“What? Did you change your mind?” Parker’s green eyes shone in the dim lights of the parking lot. Elliott could tell Parker’s wolf fought to take over and watched Elliott with an interested gaze.
“I should bring my own car,” Elliot said, proud his voice didn’t shake under Parker’s piercing glare.
“Why? Does Anthony make you work on Sunday?” Parker asked.
The bastard was going to make Elliott spell it out. Elliott sighed in frustration. “No, but I hadn’t planned on staying the night.”