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Wolf Tales 4.5Chanku Journey
By Kate Douglas
Kensington Publishing Corp.Copyright © 2007 Kate Douglas
All right reserved.
Chapter OneTia Mason stared, transfixed by the creamy white box covering her lap. After a long, silent moment, she slowly raised her head, glanced to her right, and caught her new packmate, Lisa Quinn, smiling at her. Tia took a deep breath. Let it out. Took another. With trembling hands, she slipped her fingers beneath the white satin ribbon and pushed it down the length of the box and over the end. She looked at Lisa once more, then stared at the box again.
"What's the matter? You act like you're afraid it'll bite." Lisa's teasing laughter was followed by a soft, supportive hand on Tia's forearm. "Open it, hon. It's okay."
Tia nodded as she slipped her fingers beneath the edges of the stiff cardboard lid and lifted it. A dusty hint of rose-scented sachet wafted into the air. Her first thought was how much the sweet perfume reminded her of her mother.
Then she promptly burst into tears.
She was so not ready for this. She forced the lid back on the box. The scent of the rose sachet lingered. "I can't do it, Lisa. I really can't do it."
"Can't do what? Marry your bonded mate, the man you've been in love with since the first time you saw him? Wear your mother's wedding gown? Say 'I do' in front of the people who love you? C'mon, hon. You should be happy, not sitting here in a puddle of tears. What's the matter?"
Tia tried to talk, couldn't, and took the tissue Lisa shoved into her hand. She blew her nose and wiped her eyes. "I have panic attacks just thinking about the wedding. What does that tell you? Putting on my mother's dress ..." She brushed the top of the box with her fingers. "Having Dad walk me down the aisle. I mean, it all sounds perfectly normal, but everything's going to change and it's scaring the crap out of me."
Lisa snorted. Tia swung her head around and glared. "You're not taking me very seriously, are you?"
Holding up both hands, Lisa said, "Yes. Yes, I am, but it's just so funny to hear you complaining about something normal. You're a shapeshifter, for crying out loud. A fucking wolf, Tia, just like the rest of the pack. There's not anything remotely normal about any of us."
Tia glared at Lisa and then realized she suddenly felt like giggling, not crying. With a dramatic sigh, she held out her hand for another tissue, which Lisa dropped into her palm. Tia wiped her eyes again, patted the top of the box for good measure, and settled back against the arm of the couch. "Okay," she said, fighting the lingering urge to laugh hysterically, "panic attack averted. For now. I've got it under control. Dad may have to carry me down the aisle kicking and screaming, but ..."
"You'll be fine. We'll check out the dress later if you want. Concentrate on who's coming." Lisa poured a glass of wine and handed it to Tia, obviously prepared for some heavy-duty girl talk. "It's more important, don't you think, to focus on the people who love you, not on whether you're going to make it down the aisle without tripping over your toes?"
Tia laughed. "Gee, thanks. Now you've given me a whole new set of worries." She sipped at the chilled Pinot Grigio and began to relax. Thank goodness for Lisa. Like her mate, Tinker, she was loving and warm and so wonderfully practical. Though she hadn't known Lisa all that long, Tia felt unbelievably comfortable with her.
Just as she felt comfortable with all the others who were coming here to celebrate. Every one of them, including the often mysterious Anton Cheval. Would she and Luc have the same kind of loving relationship as Keisha and Anton? Sometimes Tia found it hard to believe Luc loved her as much as he did, as much as she loved him.
Then she'd remember their mating bond, the fact there were no secrets between them. Yes, he definitely loved her. In every way possible, at every opportunity.
She glanced at Lisa and realized that, in their own way, all of her pack members loved her, and Tia loved every one of them. The bond of Chanku was more than mere membership in a particular pack; it was a blood link among all of them, a tie that could not be broken.
She thought of Shannon, her longtime friend who was also coming west to be her maid of honor. They'd been like sisters growing up, long before either one of them suspected they were connected by more than friendship but also by their Chanku blood.
Shannon was coming out from Maine with her mate, Jacob Trent, along with Lisa's brother, Baylor. Tia took Lisa's hand and squeezed her fingers. "I just thought of Bay and it reminded me, I got a call last night from Mik Fuentes. He said they've completed their assignment in Alabama in plenty of time to get here for the wedding, so not only will Baylor be here, you'll finally get to see your sister Tala."
A huge smile spread across Lisa's face. "I can't wait to see Mary Ellen ... er, Tala, and Bay. It's been over ten years. I still can't believe she's bonded with two men."
Tia squeezed Lisa's hand again. "Makes my bout of nerves look pretty dumb. You must be a basket case, waiting to reunite with your brother and sister."
Lisa nodded. "Excited, scared. Anxious ... We were such a dysfunctional family."
Typical of Chanku, Tia thought. So confusing, to live as a human with the heart and mind of a wolf buried away, hidden deep in your soul. She was one of the lucky ones. She'd found the answers to all her questions in the love of one man, in the love of the pack.
Like Lisa, she'd been given the gift of an amazing birthright. Lisa was right. What was she so nervous about? Tia leaned close and kissed Lisa on the lips. "You're not dysfunctional anymore ... and that brother of yours ... wow! When Bay was here for those two months working while Luc got his resignation from the Secret Service all straightened out ..." Tia fanned herself with her palm. "He is very, very hot."
"If you say so." Lisa laughed.
Lisa's dry comment and burst of laughter wiped away all of Tia's lingering nerves. For now. She slipped the lid off the box in her lap and gently shook her mother's wedding dress out of the tissue. "I can't imagine this will fit. Mom was such a tiny little thing." She held it up, barely controlling the sudden sting of tears behind her eyes. If only Camille had lived to see this day.
"Well, you're skinny all around. Just taller, I'll bet." Lisa took the white satin gown with its tiny seed pearls and held it up to Tia. "It probably touched the ground on your mom. Try it on. I think it's going to be gorgeous. I'm a decent seamstress. Trust me. I'll make it work."
Tia stood up and slipped her shirt over her head. It had better work. She'd put this off much too long—the wedding was barely two weeks away.
* * *
Shannon Murphy rolled over in bed and snuggled close against her packmate's backside. The Maine morning was crisp and cold, and Baylor Quinn radiated heat like a furnace. He slept soundly, but when she wrapped her fingers around his partially tumescent cock, he rolled his hips closer to her belly.
Even in sleep the man was more than a handful. Her fingertips barely met where they circled his girth. Still half asleep herself, Shannon rubbed her thumb lazily over the smooth flesh of the crown, touching the sensitive tip usually covered by Bay's foreskin.
Bay moaned in his sleep. The thrusting movement of his hips took on a slow but steady rhythm as Shannon rubbed lazy circles over his silky skin.
Where was Jake? She nuzzled her chin along Bay's spine and cast her thoughts for her mate. He'd been gone since long before dawn. She imagined him even now, racing along the dark trails beneath the heavy canopy of leaves with a big wolven grin on his face.
There was no answer to Shannon's questing thoughts. Instead, the mattress dipped behind her and her mate slipped beneath the covers. Jake smelled of forest and golden grass. His skin felt icy from the morning chill.
Shannon shivered when he stretched full-length along her spine. His nipples were hard little points pressing into her back. His cock, as hot as his body was cold, slipped naturally between her legs from behind and rested hard and thick against her sex.
"Were you starting without me?" he whispered.
Shannon felt the warm tickle of Jake's breath against her ear. "Thought about it. I was getting worried. I didn't expect you to be gone for so long."
"I needed the run. I've had a lot on my mind."
"I forgot to ask. Did you get the plane tickets yet for San Francisco?" Shannon tilted her hips just enough to bring his cock into perfect contact with her clit. "The wedding is just two weeks away."
That's part of what's on my mind.
Jake's switch to mindtalking hinted at more concern than mere tickets from Maine to San Francisco. What's up? Shannon asked.
I plan to tell Luc we're staying here permanently. Is that okay with you? He knows I've been thinking of my own pack, but ...
You know it's okay with me, though I do want to go to the wedding. I hardly know the guys, but Tia's been my best friend for most of my life.
Wanna go on the back of my bike?
"What?" Shannon whispered fiercely as she swung her head around to look over her shoulder at Jake. He was grinning like a damned fool, even as his cock began riding slick and fast along the crease of her butt and down between her thighs. "That's got to be at least three thousand miles. I don't think so."
"Think of all that power between your legs." His voice dropped to a deeper level as he whispered the words against her neck. His lips tickled her nape. He tilted his hips and angled his cock higher until the silky crown kissed her swollen clit. Shannon moaned when he nuzzled the side of her neck and whispered in her ear. His rough, sexy voice affirmed the images filling her mind and heating her sex.
"Think of it, sweetheart ... the rumble of that big engine throbbing, hot and solid and almost alive, the way it vibrates the warm leather over your sweet little pussy. The smells of forest and plains and the wind in your face ..." Jake emphasized his words with the smooth glide of his cock over her suddenly very wet sex and almost took the breath from Shannon's lungs.
She took a deep breath and reached for a bit of common sense and control. "Right. The wind in my face and my hair tied in knots. You forget, Bay doesn't have a bike and he's going with us." Shannon let go of Bay's now fully erect cock, slipped away from Jake's, and rolled over completely. Now that she could glare directly at Jake, Shannon realized he didn't seem the least perturbed.
Bay raised up and flopped over on his left side, obviously wide awake. At least, his cock was awake. Shannon felt the thick slide of it against her buttocks and couldn't help but angle her hips just enough for him to take over Jake's smooth glide.
Bay nipped her shoulder and chuckled softly in Shannon's ear. "Sorry, sweetie. Bay does have a bike. Jake talked me into buying one yesterday. I pick it up Monday."
"I don't believe you two." She really should put her foot down, but all the time Shannon was fuming, Bay was rubbing his cock between her cheeks and Jake was meeting him in the middle, rubbing slowly between her legs.
It was hard to argue with two guys when they double teamed a girl. She knew they got off on the sensation of their sizeable penises sliding one against the other as much as they did the creamy heat between her legs. Shannon tilted her hips back against Bay's belly as his arms came around her waist and his hands found both her breasts. Crossing his arms over her chest, Bay plucked at her nipples, pinching them none too gently between callused fingers.
Not to be outdone, Jake hugged Shannon, grabbing her buttocks with his fingers, slipping them between her butt and Bay's flat belly to press against her anus. She wriggled closer, realizing Jake had managed not only to sandwich her even tighter between the two men, but that he also stroked Bay's cock with his fingertips on each thrust.
Shannon closed her eyes and absorbed the sensations, the myriad nerves tingling with each perfect sweep of Jake's fingers. She heard the rustle of crisp sheets, the steady breathing of both men, and the squishy, wet sounds of their cocks sliding against each other between her legs. When she listened very carefully, she caught the rapid beat of their hearts and the wet little click of two swollen cock heads rubbing, one past the other.
She pictured the flared crowns, wet and distended now, glistening with fluids from her well-lubricated sex blended with the uncontrollable flow of pre-cum seeping from the tips. Both men were uncut. Their foreskins would be stretched back behind the swollen heads now, the skin flushed dark red, the sensitive tips exposed.
Shannon's pussy clenched as Jake's cock slipped between her slick labia with the lightest of touches. She bit back a moan. Every part of her body reacted, teased by the passage, by the smooth heat and perfect friction against her ass and her clit. Jake had found a rhythm now, pressing against her sphincter with his fingers as he thrust his cock slowly between her legs. Bay's tight grasp on her nipples made them ache, but the pain sent a constant pulse of pleasure directly to her clit.
She tightened the muscles in her sex against the hollow, needy sensation growing in the pit of her belly. Jake's fingers pressed tighter against her ass, Bay twisted her nipples, and their cocks slipped one over the other against her swollen sex.
The tension grew. She needed penetration, anything to take her over the edge. Shannon's breathing turned choppy; her eyes closed as she absorbed the pleasure. Her whole body shivered with growing arousal.
Jake's fingers penetrated her ass just as Bay pinched her nipples. Shannon jerked and screamed, her back arching as she spasmed through her first climax, shuddering and shivering, her pussy awash in a liquid orgasmic release.
Without even breaking rhythm, Jake entered her with his next stroke, burying himself all the way to the hilt on a single thrust. Shannon's muscles clenched around his cock. Her sex still rippled with aftershocks as Jake rolled over to his back and took her with him.
Bay quickly knelt between their legs and pressed the broad crown of his cock against her bottom. Still relaxed from Jake's fingers, Shannon tilted her hips to make Bay's access easier. He circled the puckered entrance with his fingers first, relaxing her even more, then pressed harder with his cock. Shannon pushed out as Bay moved forward. He was so damned big and it burned when he stretched her, slowly pressing in and out, a little farther each time as he worked beyond her tight sphincter. Once his broad crown passed beyond the loop of muscle, the pain disappeared, melding swiftly into a dark slide of pleasure. Shannon groaned as Bay entered her slowly, carefully, deeply.
Jake sighed as well. Sex-drugged, drifting in waves of sensation, Shannon opened her eyes and stared into his, into the deep amber eyes shaded in inky lashes so much like Bay's. Jake took her hands in his and stretched her arms over his head, pulling her down until her nipples rubbed the thick hair on his chest. Bay stretched out over her body and covered the backs of her hands, linking his fingers with Jake's.
Connected now, with Shannon sandwiched between them, their bodies linked but their thoughts still private, Bay slowly began moving his hips. He was the one who directed them, sliding deep inside Shannon, his erection slipping past Jake's, separated by nothing more than the thin membrane dividing her passages.
She imagined their cocks: smooth skin over muscle, swollen with blood and hard as baseball bats, slowly penetrating and retreating, one past the other deep inside her body. She tried to imagine the sensation, what her men were feeling with each pull and thrust. It was something she'd shared with both of them before.
Imagination was good, but Shannon wanted reality. She opened her mind to her lovers, slipping quietly into their thoughts and feelings, grasping at once the deep, lush sensuality of two men, lovers and friends, slowly but surely fucking each other through the woman they loved.
They didn't so much make love to Shannon as they loved each other within her body. Feeling as much like a beloved vessel as a participant, Shannon lost herself to sensation, to the coarse hair on Jake's chest scraping her tender nipples, to the hard muscles of Bay's chest and the softer, silkier hair that spread over his. She loved the way it brushed against her back, loved the small tremors she felt in his body as he fought the rising level of excitement threatening his control.
Excerpted from Wolf Tales 4.5 by Kate Douglas Copyright © 2007 by Kate Douglas. Excerpted by permission of Kensington Publishing Corp.. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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