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“Clear out the humans,” he muttered as he turned to Jacob. “I want only Breeds in this room until we get a message. Assign themelsewhere, put them on cleanup duty, I don’t care. But get them the hell out of here.”

The rage building inside him was nearly more than he could control. The distinction between Breed and full-bred humans had never beenso impressed upon him as it was now. They were fighting for equality,

fighting to make their way in a world where they had been created rather than conceived naturally. They hadn’t wanted to be different. But Aiden felt the differences now more than he had in his entire life. Not that it was unheard of for a Breed to turn violent.Quite the opposite. But never did one Breed betray another to the Council or to other humans. Their crimes were often against the Council or humans suspected of working with them. A few instances of insanity had pitted a Breed against his Pack, but never to the extent that they betrayed them to the monsters who created them. Disposable soldiers.This was what they had been designed for, he thought as he sat down in front of the master computer.Disposable.Without value. Creatures designed and created to follow the whims and cruelties of those who made them.

In the eyes of the Council they had no humanity. They were animals, nothing more. In the eyes of many full-bred humans, he knew it was the same. He had seen it in their eyes, in their actions. The Breeds were different. They were animals, undeserving of loyalty or life.Undeserving of his mercy. When he found the bastard who had betrayed them, he would kill him. It was that simple.

Chapter Twenty-Eight

“Have I mentioned I hate caves,” Nikki bit out as the jeep pulled into the wide entrance of just that.A cave.

The two men in the back jumped out and within seconds an expanse of concealing foliage slid across the entrance. Charity watched the maneuver with narrowed eyes. From a distance, the fake evergreens would look real and would effectively hide the entrance of the cave.

“Come on.” The driver jumped from the front and turned back to them as lights flickered on in a tunnel to the left of them.

“Impressive.” Charity gave the driver a hard look as she moved from the jeep. “I bet you can see the Breed compound easily from here.”

She had paid attention to the drive as it was made. Several times she had glimpsed the large lake that the compound sat beside as they moved into the mountains. She roughly guessed that with the right equipment, spying into the compound would be easy enough.

No one answered. They were moved quickly, impatiently through the tunnel until they entered a large, cavernous room. There, Charity stopped in shock. It was well lit, comfortably heated and laid out almost like a large home.

On the far side stood several electric cooking rings.Rough wood shelves held an assortment of pots and pans and dry goods. A small refrigerator sat on what was obviously a homemade table. Across from it was a long plank table with simple wood chairs.

Charity was standing at the entrance of what appeared to be the living area, though, benches, a few old, beaten recliners, a couch that had seen better days, and a card table.

“We’ll redecorate one of these days.” The hard-eyed Coyote glanced at her mockingly. “Come on, through here.”

Another tunnel led off to the side. This one was lit by several fat candles that had been set within grooved ledges in the stone wall. Within seconds of entering the narrow walkway, Charity heard the first moan. It was low, distressed and definitely female.

“Shit,” she heard Nikki mutter behind her, and Charity silently agreed. She knew that sound. They entered a bedroom. Against the wall a wide bed had been set up, made from rough wood but holding a large mattress. On the mattress the woman was curled into a fetal position, her arms wrapped around her abdomen. Beside her sat a tall, roughly handsome male, his dark blonde hair falling past his shoulders, his eyes cold and unusually black in his weathered face. He rose to his feet, the damp cloth he had been holding in his hands dropping to the table beside the bed. His eyes went to the men behind her.

“Casualties?” he asked.

“None.The Council was attacking so we grabbed them and ran before anyone was the wiser.”

His broad chest lifted with a weary breath.

“Oh, I’m certain someone’s wiser by now,” Charity bit out as she moved for the bed and the woman laying on it.

“I hope you at least have some medical supplies,” Nikki bit out as she followed. “What happened to her?”

Charity pushed back the long, tangled red hair that lay over the woman’s face and checked her shoulder first. The whimpers, the position of the body and the soft scent she detected assured her she knew exactly what she was looking at. She looked at Nikki.

The doctor stood back.

“Who bit the woman?” She turned her fierce gaze on the man who had moved back at they neared the bed.

Charity watched him as well. His eyes were as black as the pits of hell, though his gaze was as cold as ice.

“What does the mark have to do with it?” he bit out. “We’re not infected, woman.”

Charity watched the tight, sarcastic smile that shaped Nikki’s lips.

“Of course you are,” she almost crooned. “If what I see is true, you’re infected with this amazing little hormone, Coyote. It’s really quite astounding.”

The Coyote’s eyes narrowed. “Explain.”

“You mated the woman.” Charity wasn’t in the mood to listen to Nikki bicker with the Coyote. She was tired, sore, and by God, she was horny. She wanted to waste as little time here as possible so she could get back to Aiden, their bed, and relief.

“Mated her?” he bit out. “Coyotes don’t mate, woman. No matter the rumors…”

“Did you swell within her, big boy?” Nikki bit out. “While you were taking her, it’s more than obvious you bit her, so I’ll assume you locked inside her as well?”

“An anomaly,” he growled.“Animal instinct.”

“I know the Council trains their Coyotes in sexual conquest,” she sneered the term the Council used for rape. “Don’t tell me this is your first woman.”

Charity listened to the bickering going on behind her as she checked the woman’s pupils, her pulse then checked for the brand the Council placed on all its creations. She stilled when she pulled the girl’s hair back and found nothing on her shoulders. She moved to her hips, pulling the blanket aside, and still found nothing.

“Charity?”Nikki questioned her actions.

She turned back watching Nikki intently. “She’s not a Breed.”

Nikki moved then. She didn’t speak and, like Charity, ignored the men as she began to exam the woman. She pushed at their hands, whimpering at each touch. She was perspiring heavily, her face pale, her blue eyes dazed as she fought them weakly.

“Son of a bitch,” Nikki cursed. “Now look.” She turned on the male watching them with a glitter of fury in his eyes. “I’ve cursed for hours straight. Do you know how mad that makes me? Do you know how mad you are making me? Do you have any idea what you’ve done? Please, tell me you didn’t rape this girl.”

Fury lashed through her voice. Charity herself was trembling at the thought as she glimpsed the small bruises on the woman’s breasts and arms.

“There was no rape,” he bit out.

“Who took her?” Charity turned back then, facing him with Nikki, rage trembling through her body. “It was you, wasn’t it?”

“It was.” He made no excuses, though Charity had found that few Breeds did.

“You mated her. She’s in heat. Does she even know what you are?”

He blinked, his gaze flickering from the woman who moaned roughly on the bed back to Charity, then Nikki.

“I am a Coyote. Coyotes do not mate.”

“Well, big boy, either you advanced or you just plain lucked the fuck out,” Nikki snarled. Charity winced. She said fuck. It wasn’t good when Nikki said fuck. She watched the male’s stubborn jaw tighten. He looked like a blonde-haired avenger with those black eyes staring down at them, his dark face flushing with anger or embarrassment, she wasn’t certain.

“Contact the compound now,” she bit out. “She’s in advanced fertility and she’s in heat. Neither of you are safe because if the Council finds out, and somehow they will, then this woman’s life isn’t worth squat. Do you understand me?”

“Aiden has been contacted,” he bit out, his gaze going to the woman once again. “What is the mating you keep talking about?”

She crossed her arms over her breasts, watching him with an almost rabid amusement. She was mad enough, and just frustrated enough that she was beyond caring if she antagonized her captor.

“She belongs to you now,” Charity bit out. “Her body is preparing itself, changing, matching yours enough that she will conceive.” Did he pale? “She’s in heat. She needs to be fucked.A lot.Almost constantly.By only you. Go figure. You’re the first Coyote to mate, and you mated a full human at that. Damn, if you haven’t shot some theories to hell and back. And here we thought Coyotes were only good for their stink.”

“We do not stink,” one of the men behind her growled.

“Was she talking to you?” Nikki asked him sweetly. “We didn’t pull your chain, big boy.”

Pale blue eyes narrowed fiercely. “You have a smart mouth, woman,” he bit out.

“Oh, you just realized that? Aren’t you the smart one?” She used the tone Charity knew was reserved for only the most obtuse.

“You wasted your time bringing us here,” Charity bit out. “And trust me, Aiden won’t be pleased. You better be finding a hole to hide in…”

“There is nohole deep enough,” Aiden’s furious growl interrupted her as he stalked into the room. Following him were over two-dozen Wolf Breeds, their rifles raised warningly as they stepped into the room.

“Well, looks like the cavalry has arrived,” Nikki sniped.“All male and all pumping testosterone.Morons.”

Charity sighed. Nikki wasn’t pleased. It wouldn’t be a pleasant return trip.

Chapter Twenty-Nine

Aiden stood in the entrance of a smaller cave farther atop the mountain the Coyotes had taken as home base. The cave was accessed by several long tunnels, then a ladder that led into a natural opening into the floor of the upper cavern. There, within the outside entrance, the leader of the Coyote Pack had set up a long distance telescope aimed into the Breed compound.

“We’ve been watching you for months,” he commented as Aiden focused the telescope with its night vision sight and watched the movements below. “When I first learned that several of your women were experiencing problems similar to Anya’s, I started sending the messages. When there was no answer, I grew desperate.”

The moving red targets below flitted between trees and natural shelters as they patrolled the perimeters of the compound. Aiden knew there were also several others protected against the night vision sights who were keeping careful watch within the large trees of the area.Both inside and out.

“When did you first realize who our spy was?” he asked, knowing Del-Rey’s messages as well as his means of drawing an answer were designed to keep his own identity hidden, as well as his location.

“Several days ago,” the other man sighed. “I received information of the attack several hours before it happened. I sent yet another message. Once more it was ignored.”

Aiden grunted.

“Were you able to identify the spy?” He wasn’t in the mood to play games. He wanted the identity of the man who had dared to betray them.

“Breed Law demands death,” Rey mused softly. “Sometimes the answer isn’t always so cut and dried, Wolf.”

Aiden rose from the sight of the telescope and pinned the other man with a hard look. “Breed Law exists for a reason, Del-Rey.”


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