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“Oh my god,” Isabella whispered, shocked that any parent could be that cold. Okay, granted before she heard that she thought her parents were pretty damn cold. “What did Chris do?” she found herself asking.

Joshua shrugged. “He was too busy restraining me to do anything.”

“Restraining you?”

“I may have kicked her a few times,” he said, smiling sheepishly.

“Good,” she said, wishing she could kick the woman a few times. “Did she ever apologize?”

“No,” came the hard answer from the doorway, “but at least she’s gone back to calling me a f**king bastard.”

Chapter 19

“I’m sorry, Chris. I didn’t mean to-” Joshua started to say, but Chris waved the apology off.

“Don’t worry about it,” he said, knowing his brother had only been trying to help. He didn’t really care if she knew that his mother was a bitch or not. The whole town knew and she would have known within a day if she stuck around, but that didn’t mean he liked the look of pity on her face as she looked up at him.

He hated pity.

“Did you clean her up?” he asked, switching the subject.

“Yeah, they’re shallow and should be healed in a day or two,” Joshua said, collecting his first aid kit as he stood up. “You’ll probably be a little sore, but that’s nothing a hot soak won’t fix,” Joshua said, giving Izzy a warm smile that she easily returned.

“Thank you, Joshua,” she said, getting up. As soon as Joshua was out of the room the smile was replaced with a glare in his direction.

“Not happy to see me I take it?” he said, closing the bedroom door in case she started to read him the riot act. The last thing he needed was for his mate to wake up his grandmother and little brother and draw their attention.

“No, I’m not, but I guess I don’t have much choice in the matter, now do I?” she asked as she sat on the edge of the bed, glaring at him.

“Nope,” he said, making the word pop as he casually strolled around the guest room, checking to make sure that none of the previous guests left anything behind that could be used as a weapon. Not that she’d know how to use one if they had, he thought with an inward groan.

Christ, even his sister Jill would have been at least put up a fight. She would have made sure at least one of them was singing soprano before she allowed herself to be captured, but not his little mate. She hadn’t put much of a fight up about anything. Hell, the first time Joshua had been strung upside down in the foyer he’d at least tried to bitch slap everyone.

Granted, most of his hits missed, but that probably had something to do with the fact that his seventeen year old brother had been too drunk to walk at that moment.

If he hadn’t been drunk out of his mind he probably would have remembered to stay away for two weeks to give his body a chance to get rid of every trace of alcohol so that their father and Madison wouldn’t kill him.

“Are you going to answer my questions now?” she demanded.

“Ask away,” he said, looking out the second floor window and immediately dismissing it as an escape route. If she had a problem with the ten foot drop from the first floor then there was no way she was going to chance a fall at this distance.

“What is a Sentinel? Why do you think I’m one? And why do keep acting like I’m yours?” she asked in a rush and he was actually relieved that she hadn’t brought up that little kiss in the foyer.

It was one more f**k up he could add to the last twentyfour hours. If he’d had his choice in mates it wouldn’t have been her, but that didn’t change the fact that his body craved her. Giving into it the way he had a little while ago had been a colossal f**k up on his part.

Touching her, tasting her had only made his body crave her more. He’d known at the time that he was f**king up, but hadn’t been able to stop himself. She had him hard and aching for her in a way that he’d been helpless to fight against. Stopping himself from running his hands over her br**sts and between her legs to see how wet she was for him had been one of the hardest things he’d ever done, but the knowledge that she allowed another man to touch her was like getting his ass dropped in a pool of ice water.

Before he found out who and what he was he’d tried to save face by messing with a few girls. He’d done everything but f**k them and although he hadn’t enjoyed it he made damn sure that he was good at it.

Although it scared him that he couldn’t get hard for any of them even when they stroked or licked him he’d been secretly relieved that he couldn’t do more than get them off.

He didn’t want to be like his mother who f**ked anything and damn well didn’t want to be like any of the men that came sniffing around her and allowed themselves to be led around by their dicks. Finding out that he had a mate out there who wouldn’t feel sexual attraction for anyone else, someone that was going through what he went through made it easier to deal with that little problem. As soon as he found out about his mate he felt as though he belonged to someone and had been more than happy to give up dating the local girls to save face. He didn’t care that people in town gossiped about his lack of a love life. He was a married man, something he never thought he’d ever achieve given his less than humble beginnings.

Unfortunately the wife he got was weak and a slut, something he would never allow himself to have. He knew damn well that she hadn’t been excited for any man, but she’d f**ked them anyway. It made him wonder what exactly she gained by doing it. He couldn’t help but wonder why she did it. Did she use the men?

Need something? Or just enjoyed toying with a man?

None of it should matter to him since she was leaving in a matter of hours, but it did. He wanted to know why his mate had given herself to another man even though she hadn’t wanted him. It would probably send him into a killing rage when he heard the truth, but maybe that would be for the best. It would help him hate her so that when she was gone he’d be able to shove away the affect she had on his body that much quicker and focus back on his work.

“I’ll answer your questions, but then you’ll answer a few of mine,” he said as he came back to the bedroom door and leaned back against it.

“Yeah, I don’t think so, buddy. Seems to me that you got all the answers you’re going to get out of me with little stunt with the rope,” she said, glaring at him as she crossed her arms over her rather large chest and drawing his attention. When he felt his body harden he forced himself to look back at her face.

The morning erections he’d gotten since he was a kid never felt like this. He’d barely noticed them and if he touched it or if something rubbed against it, it didn’t register in his mind. But he noticed it now. It was both heaven and hell.

He felt his balls tighten as his dick filled and hardened in his pants as it craved a touch. Since the moment he met her he fought against the urge to pull it out and run his hand over it. Not even twenty minutes ago when he stripped to take a quick shower he’d almost lost that battle, several times. Only the knowledge that it would make it worse since Sentinels could not bring themselves to release stopped him. When the battle became more than he could take he’d taken his first cold shower in years.