He shared a look with Caine. Oh, they were more than a little curious and judging by the way that Kale’s eyes went all silver at the reminder of his recent ass whooping, he was also curious.

“I’d love to know how he did it, especially just coming out of bloodlust,” Chris said against Ephraim’s hand.

“You and me both,” he muttered, dropping his hand away from Chris’ mouth even as he shot his son a warning glare not to start the bullshit back up again.

“She didn’t have a mark on her either,” Caine added, looking thoughtful.

“That’s because he wrapped his body around her and protected her,” Chris pointed out, wincing as he shifted his broken arm. It was already halfway healed, but the process hurt like hell. Not that Chris would let anyone know just how much pain he was in. He hated being fussed over by anyone but his mate.

“He didn’t grab her until after the van had already rolled over once,” Kale said, looking equally thoughtful. “She should have had a few bruises or cuts from that crash, but she didn’t. Not a single one.”

“She was wrapped up in a blanket so for all you know, she could have had a few injuries,” Chris said, giving up on trying to sit up and just laid there, staring up at the early morning sky.

Caine shook his head right along with him as he answered, “We would have smelled the blood pooling beneath her skin. She wasn’t injured.”

“Now that I think of it,” Caine said, looking a little confused, “her back healed a hell of a lot faster than it should have.”

“That’s because we kept a line down her throat, pumping blood inside her the whole time,” Chris added, but the expression on his face told him that even he realized that she’d healed a little too fast.

“The cut on her hand didn’t heal quickly,” Danni pointed out, reminding them of Ephraim’s f**k up.

“No, it didn’t,” Ephraim said, frowning as he tried to make sense of everything.

“But she also didn’t slip into bloodlust,” Kale announced, drawing everyone’s attention.

“How do you know?” Caine asked before Ephraim or anyone else for that matter, got the chance.

“Because I slipped back up to their floor and listened,” Kale admitted with a careless shrug.

“He probably fed her,” Danni pointed out around a yawn as she settled more deeply in her mate’s arms.

“Not for a few hours,” Kale said, leveling a pointed look on Ephraim, making sure that he got the message.

He definitely got it.

There was something different about Christofer’s blood, something that allowed the woman he’d turned to put off bloodlust a hell of a lot longer than she should have been able to after being freshly turned and losing blood. If what Kale said was true, and he had no reason not to believe it, something had changed since the last time that they saw the couple and when they returned for them and he had a feeling he knew what that something was.

“He’s fed her his blood,” Caine murmured, a pained expression on his face as he looked down at Danni, who was looking worse as the morning progressed.

“Maybe he’s part demon,” Chris suggested, raising his broken arm and resting it across his stomach, taking Ephraim’s arm right along with it. The bones had fused back together so that the arm was no longer hanging at an odd angle, but it was still broken. He could smell the marrow slowly seeping out.

Kale shook his head as he pulled his leg up, which of course dragged Chris’ good arm up along with it since it was handcuffed to the shifter’s ankle. “We would have smelled demon blood on him.”


“Oh my God!” a woman’s shriek drew their attention to a man and woman stumbling out of the woods to their left.

“What the hell happened?” the man, who appeared to be around fifty, demanded as he pushed past the gawking woman and rushed over to help them.

“Oh, this?” Chris asked, all innocence as he raised his head to give the man his most charming smile. “Just a simple misunderstanding.”

“A misunderstanding?” the man repeated back, sounding horrified as he looked at what was left of the van.

“What should I do, Alfie?” the woman asked, shifting nervously where she stood, gawking at them.

“Call 911,” Alfie said, moving to help them, but came up short when he saw that they were all handcuffed to one another. “Why are you handcuffed?”

“Our friend has a sick sense of humor,” Chris claimed with a straight face as the rest of them were forced to look away so that the couple didn’t see them all roll their eyes.

Ephraim would have said something, but since the scent of the human blood had caused a rather unpleasant reaction, he decided, along with Caine and Danni as it turned out, that it was probably for the best if they just went ahead and pretended to pass out while Chris used a mixture of charm and bullshit to get them out of this without the humans finding out that they’d stumbled upon a group of ravenous Pytes and an ass**le.


“She bit me!”

“Great,” he sighed, wondering why he’d let Cloe talk him into this.

Oh, that’s right, because she’d woken him up just in time for him to watch as his c**k disappeared inside her tight pu**y and had taken advantage of his distracted state. While he’d been sleeping, she’d been thinking, and at some point she’d come to the conclusion that they needed this group’s help.

When he’d pointed out that he could damn well take care of her and that he didn’t need any help, Cloe had given him what he could only describe as evil smile as she ground down on him, shifting her h*ps in a circular motion that had made it impossible for him to talk, never mind argue. So, now he was here, hauling ass through the woods and trying to figure out the best way to accept their offer without having to grovel.

Or apologize.

“Call the police, Mary!” a guy screamed just as Christofer picked up the scent of freshly spilled human blood.

“I can’t!” a woman, whom he was guessing was Mary, screamed. “I don’t have a signal!”

“Run!” Ephraim roared just as Christofer stepped out of the woods and into the small clearing by the road.

Yup, he definitely regretted leaving Danni’s hand free, he mused as he reached out and grabbed Cloe by the arm to steady her as she stumbled out of the woods.

“Thanks,” Cloe murmured absently, her attention on the large pair of boxers that she was once again forced to yank up or risk giving little woodland creatures a show. Once she had the boxers yanked up and the large tee shirt that he’d given her pulled down, she looked up and frowned.

“What…..,” she paused to lick her lips and give her head a little shake as though that would somehow help her make sense of the scene before them, “Why is Danni playing tug of war with that man?”

“Because she apparently went into bloodlust,” he said, sighing heavily as he watched Danni try to drag the human male kicking and screaming back while Caine tried to pull her away. The fact that his left arm was cuffed to her and his right arm was cuffed to Ephraim, who had positioned himself in front of Chris, was making things a bit awkward.

“That’s what I look like when I go into bloodlust?” Cloe asked with a frown as she watched Danni trying to drag the human back with one hand, but from the looks of things, the human was winning.