Authors: Samantha Horne
I heard the door open from Jasmine’s fitting suite, and heard her voice right outside my own door.
“Yeah, those witches really know their stuff.”
I finished dressing myself before Jasmine’s words registered in my brain. I opened my door and looked at her in confusion, as she stood outside with her arms full of clothes and a smile on her face.
“There are witches too?”
“Well, yeah. Who else do you think could cast a perimeter spell like that?”
“Hold on. Actual witches?” A smile crossed my face and Jasmine laughed.
“Yeah. They live in their own private towns, but they are a lot more suspicious than we are. They tend to live in places humans would never go anyway, like mountains and caves. We do them favours, and they help us out, hence the spell.”
“Wow, that is so cool.” I felt like a child who’d just been told all of the characters from my fairy tales were real, and I was so excited.
“Can I meet them sometime?”
“Sure. I’d be careful, though. If you thought us lot were hostile around you to begin with, you haven’t seen anything yet. The witches don’t hate humans, but they don’t want to socialise with them either. They’re relatively peaceful, but if you mess with them you’re bound to regret it within about five minutes.”
I felt scared, but also so excited at this whole world which I had been thrown in to. I couldn’t wait to find out more about it.
Laura laughed at the eager look on my face and we walked to pay for our purchases, before heading out in to the sunshine. As we walked around the street corner, two men who I didn’t recognise suddenly appeared, blocking our access to the street. I looked around nervously and noticed that we were the only people around, and I hoped that the guys were just passing through and would leave us in peace.
“You’re the human?” The first man growled, before pushing me up against the wall and blocking me in. My heart started to pound as I saw Jasmine try to get to me, but the other man held her firmly in his arms whilst she fought to get away from his grip.
“And?” I said, sticking my chin out with a defiance showing a confidence I didn’t feel. “So what if I am?”
“You’re coming with me.” He growled in my face, before latching hold of my arm and pulling it so hard I cried out in pain.
“No!” Jasmine and I both shouted at the same time, while the two guys just laughed at our failed efforts to get away from them.
“Get off her!” Screamed Jasmine, and the man holding her was laughing as he had to put in barely any effort to keep her in his grip. They were a lot stronger than us; and that terrified me. I planted my feet firmly on the ground, but all I could grab was air as I could feel him pulling me further and further away, towards a black van which was waiting on the side of the road. I knew that if I ended up in the back of that van, then my chances of survival would be significantly reduced, so I fought with everything I had. I scratched and – I know it’s awful - but I spat at him too, to try and get him to release my arm. My pulse was pounding in my ears and all I could hear was the men’s cruel laughter and Jasmine’s screams as I got further and further away from her. All of a sudden, I heard feet pounding the pavement and I slumped in relief to see Tyler and Ethan rounding the corner, running towards us with rage on their faces.
The man looked surprised to see them, and I took advantage of his pause by yanking my arm and running towards Jasmine. The second man pushed Jasmine away, hard, causing her to fall in to me and we both crashed to the ground. I checked that she was okay, before looking up to find Tyler and Ethan beating the crap out of the two guys. My heart was pounding and I had no idea what they wanted with me; I was just so thankful for Tyler and Ethan’s perfect timing. My head span as I saw them land blow after blow on the guys, before they realised they were screwed and quickly ran off. Ethan ran after them, while Tyler turned back to us, helping us both off the floor and looking us over.
“You guys okay?” He asked, not even out of breath from the fight he just had. I was so jealous - I only had to run for five minutes and I collapsed from exhaustion.
“I’m fine, are you okay Jasmine?” I asked her, to which she responded with a shaky nod of her head.
“I’m sorry, I can’t shift.”
I was confused momentarily, before what she said sunk in.
“Are you a human?”
“No, I’m a latent shifter. Happens occasionally. I don’t ever feel the urge to shift, which is good in some ways, but it makes me pretty much useless in fights.” She looked at the floor and I could tell she was uncomfortable with the conversation. I couldn’t bear that sadness gracing her face, so I walked over to her and gave her a hug, trying to communicate to her that she didn’t have to say anything else.
Ethan came back a few minutes later, telling us he didn’t manage to catch the guys as they had driven off in their van, but he didn’t think they would be back for fear of what would happen to them. All they knew was that they didn’t belong to Jackson’s pack, and that was worrying because other packs were not normally brave - or stupid - enough to trespass on other’s territory.
“Come on, let’s get you home.” Tyler said, before ushering me and Jasmine in to his car and driving us back through the forest towards Jackson’s house. On the way over, he called Jackson whose angry voice reverberated through the telephone, and I found I couldn’t wait to get a hug from him.
I must have it bad.
We pulled up outside Jackson’s house and he and Noah came rushing out the front door before we could even get our seatbelts undone. Noah opened Jasmine’s door and had her up in his arms faster that I could blink, and started carrying her towards the house, whispering in her ear as he went. Jackson came around to my door, and helped me out of the car, before enveloping me in his arms and making me feel so safe I never wanted to leave. He placed a kiss to the top of my head, before putting his arm around my waist and walking with me towards the front door of the house. His body was like granite and I could feel the rage in him as he shook slightly, but he was trying to mask his emotions from me. I quickly remembered Tyler and turned around to thank him, but the car was already gone. I made a mental note to thank him later on, and let Jackson practically carry me in to the kitchen and seat me at the table. He sat opposite me, but pulled my chair closer so our knees were touching, and he held my hands, the chill instantly leaving my body as his warmth touched me.
“Are you okay?” He asked.
“I’m fine. Is Jasmine okay?”
“She’ll be fine. Noah’s looking after her.”
“Who were they?” I asked, certain that Jackson would know.
“Tyler tells me they were definitely from the Grove Pack. It’s rare for wolves to trespass on others territory, with the fear of war being very real. Unfortunately, it looks like they don’t care about that. They’re getting cocky and that makes them dangerous. I would just take my men and go after the pack but I need to think about my family and the people here. We want to avoid war, but if they keep coming after you I may be forced in to it. When Tyler phoned me I was so scared.”
My heart warmed as I saw real fear in his eyes, and concern for me shining through.
“Jackson? Scared? I didn’t think you were afraid of anything.” I smiled.
“I’m afraid of losing you.” My chest tightens as if serious gaze settles on mine, and he squeezed my hands before continuing.
“I know we’ve only known each other for a few weeks, but I’ve never felt like this before in my life. You make me laugh, you make me happy and you make me willing to do anything for you. I’m falling in love with you, Laura, and I’m not going to let anyone take you away from me.”
I remained silent while my brain tried to process everything he was saying to me. My heart rejoiced as I knew I felt the same way about him, and I cried out in elation before throwing my arms around his neck. I hugged him before pulling back and beaming at him.
“I can’t describe it either. It’s scary and terrifying and oh, so confusing, but I’m falling in love with you too.”
He smiled the biggest smile I had ever seen, when our moment is ruined by Blake bursting through the kitchen door.
“Hey, sis! How you doing?” He strode over to me with that cock swagger of his, and picked me up, twirling me around a few times before putting me back down. I felt sick from all the spinning and Jackson came to stand next to me, putting an arm around my waist and offering me his support.
“Sis?” I asked Blake, looking up at his smiling face.
How were Jackson and Blake so different? You’ve never know they were related unless they told you.
“Yeah, I figure now you’re with Jackson and he’s pretty whipped, that I can call you my sister now, right?”
I laughed and playfully swatted him on the chest. “Well, I guess there was a vacancy for annoying shit of an older brother.” Jackson laughed beside me, and Blake pretended to be wounded by my words.
“Harsh, sister.” He turned to look at Jackson, and his smile dimmed slightly.
“What are we going to do about this?”
“I’ll have my men on her every minute.”
“Woah, woah…” I pulled myself out of Jackson’s arms and took a step back, looking at him in annoyance.
“What are you talking about?”
“Until we come up with a plan for how we can stop these guys, I’m not letting you head out alone.”
“That’s a bit of overkill isn’t it?”
Blake watched us with amusement in his eyes.
“Laura, did you not hear a word of what I just said?”
“Yes, of course I did!”
“Then you’ll know that you mean a lot to me. For whatever reason, these guys are after you, and I’m not going to let anything happen to you.” He walked over to me, and pulled me in to a hug. Dammit, I couldn’t resist his hugs. “Let me look after you, it’s important to me.”
Fuck, he had to go and say that, didn’t he?
“Urgh, fine.” I agreed, half-heartedly. Blake looked at us before pretending to vomit and shuddered.
“Urgh, you guys are so soppy.” He smiled though, to show he was joking.
“Blake, would you mind sorting it out for me? I’ll stay with Laura tonight but from tomorrow I need the guys to take rotations to watch Laura when I’m not there.”
Great, I loved being talked about like I wasn’t even there.
“I’m on it,” Blake said, before saluting and leaving the room.
“By the way, when I said I was saying with you tonight, I meant in your bed. I hope you don’t mind?”
I laughed, and was already walking towards the door before he had even finished his sentence.
“Best idea you’ve ever had.”
We were in my bedroom later than evening, and Noah and Jasmine had taken Annabelle out to the cinema, so we were alone in the house for the first time since arriving there a couple of weeks ago. We stood at the end of the bed, and my heart was racing at the pure lust that was in his eyes. I’d never felt anything like this when Craig and I had slept together. Jackson could make me feel with just one look, like I was the most beautiful woman in the world. He reached forward to tuck a strand of my hair behind my ear, and looked at me in a way that sent chills down my spine.
“I can’t seem to stay away from you,” he whispered, holding my head gently with both hands and looking at me as if I was the only woman left on the planet.
“Well, what can I say? I tend to have that effect on people.”
He laughed, and dimples hit his cheeks in the most adorable way.
“See? No-one’s ever made me laugh the way you have before. You’ve cast a spell over me, Laura.”
“Your lines get cheesier and cheesier.” I smiled, then gasped as he suddenly pulled me in to his body, his arms cradling me as if I was made of fine China.
“Are they working?”
“Oh yeah.” I whispered, before throwing caution to the wind. I lunged forward with a desperation bordering on embarrassing. I just had time to notice his shocked impression, before I was attacking his mouth and grabbing his hair. He moaned the most delicious hum which reverberated through my whole body; I felt on fire with the passion he ignited within me. Our tongues duelled and our breaths mingled as we seemed to fight for dominance of the kiss; oh, it was the most wonderful fight though, and I never wanted it to end. He pushed me gently whilst still kissing me, and I fell backwards on to the bed, our lips never leaving each other’s as we both scrambled to get each other’s clothes off. I’d never been the kind of girl to hop in to bed with a man straight away, but Jackson was different. Over the past few weeks we’d grown closer, and what I felt for him already exceeded what I ever felt for Craig. The timing felt right and that was the most important thing. All doubts vanished from my mind as Jackson suddenly pulled my naked body down to the edge of the bed, lifting my legs and settling between my thighs as if about to tuck in to a delicious meal. He licked his lips, sent me a wink and then I swear I have no idea what happened next. My brain seemed to stop working and the only thing I could focus on was Jackson’s tongue as he licked me to climax multiple times. I grabbed his head as I reached the stars for the third time, my voice hoarse from screaming so loudly and my hips thrusting upwards as if trying to get even more of that delicious tongue. I collapsed backwards, my strength gone as he settled himself over me, positioning himself at my entrance.