Moonlight savior, p.15
Moonlight Savior, page 15
“Maybe. But if she’s dating a werewolf, I might as well hang a neon sign around her neck. I’m not going to take that kind of chance.”
Ramsey nodded. “All right. Then, if you’ve looked your fill for the day, let’s get back to work.”
When Ramsey walked in the door at home, he inhaled the tantalizing smell of roast and apple pie, two of his favorites. He locked up and followed the delicious aroma to the kitchen. Harper was just pulling the pie from the oven when he walked in.
“Someone’s been busy,” he said, startling her.
“I didn’t hear you come in. How was work?”
He shrugged. “About the same. I went to lunch with Hunter. I think I discovered why he’s seemed distracted lately.”
“Oh? Did he talk to you about it?”
Ramsey shook his head. “Not exactly. We went to Laguna Paradise for lunch.”
Both of her eyebrows went up. “You went to a bar for lunch? With barely dressed women?”
He tried not to grin, loving the jealous tone of her voice. He wasn’t sure what bothered her more. The fact he went drinking in the middle of the day, or the women. He was betting on the women.
“It was Hunter’s pick. It seems he has his eye on one of the waitresses, but he refuses to do anything because of what the alphas said. He doesn’t want to put her in danger.”
“So my brother is in love?” she asked.
“I don’t think he knows her well enough for that, but he’s definitely interested in her. I think he goes there just to be near her.”
“Sounds like love to me.”
Ramsey shook his head. “I doubt it’s love. He certainly didn’t say anything about love. Maybe it’s just good old fashioned lust.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” he asked.
“My brother doesn’t focus that much on someone unless it’s serious. Who knows, maybe she’s his mate.”
“I suggested the same thing, actually.”
Harper smiled at him. “Go wash up. Enough talk about Hunter. Your dinner is getting cold.”
Ramsey kissed her briefly before going to take a shower. He tried to make it quick, scrubbing the grease from his skin the best he could. Once he had dried off and dressed, he hurried back to the kitchen. Harper had set the table and was waiting patiently for him.
As they sat down to eat, she tucked her hair behind her ears. “I meant to tell you, I’ll be going out tomorrow. Kiera and Aislinn invited me to lunch and a movie.”
“That sounds like fun.”
“I’m a little nervous. I still don’t know them very well. What if they don’t like me? What if things are awkward tomorrow?”
He grinned. “Honey, they wouldn’t have invited you if they didn’t like you. Just make sure someone comes to pick you up. I don’t want you to be alone.”
She sighed. “I’m sure I’ll be fine, Ramsey.”
“I wasn’t asking. You’re not to be alone tomorrow. It’s Trent’s last day in town and I’m not taking a chance with your safety.”
“Fine. I’ll call Kiera back and see if she can come and get me tomorrow.”
“I know you think I’m being unreasonable, but I want to make sure you’re protected. I’m just trying to take care of you.”
She placed her hand over his. “I know. I’ll just be glad when he’s gone so things can settle down again.”
“Not much longer. But once Trent’s gone, things still won’t be normal. We’ll have to see how much damage the demons do, assuming we’re still standing afterward. We have to face the possibility that the pack might be wiped out.” He looked at her. “If something happens to me, I want you to promise me that you’ll go somewhere safe, even if it means going back to California.”
“Maybe they won’t come.”
Ramsey shook his head. “Aislinn’s sorcerer was adamant that a war was coming. And it’s going to be demons. Honestly, we hadn’t even realized demons existed until now. We have no idea how to fight them.”
“I guess we’ll just have to take things one day at a time.”
Ramsey squeezed her hand. “I promise I’ll protect you when the time comes. I would willingly give my life for yours.”
“That’s what I’m afraid of,” she murmured.
Harper was anxiously waiting on Kiera the next day when the phone rang.
“Harper, it’s Kiera. I know I’m supposed to pick you up, now in fact, but I’m running behind schedule and still have to take the baby to Chloe’s. Do you think you could meet me at the restaurant?”
Harper paused. It didn’t bother her, but she’s promised Ramsey she wouldn’t go anywhere alone. Then again, it wasn’t that far to the restaurant. Surely she’d be safe on her own.
“I guess that would be okay,” she finally responded. “We just can’t tell Ramsey. He’d be furious with me.”
“I’m used to over-protective werewolves. Once he sees you’re safe, he’ll be fine with it. He might bluster a bit, but that’s all.”
“All right. I’ll meet you there in twenty minutes.”
Harper hung up the phone and picked up her keys. She walked out the door and locked the house. Slinging her purse over her shoulder, she walked down the driveway toward her car. As she unlocked the car and started to open the door, a hand clamped down over her mouth.
“I knew I’d catch you alone sooner or later.”
Her eyes widened. Trent! Suddenly, she wished she’d listened to Ramsey. She should have told Kiera she couldn’t meet her. But no, she had to be brave and reckless, and look where it had gotten her. She threw her elbow back, hitting him in the ribs. He grunted, but didn’t release her.
“I asked you nicely to come with me. If you’d only agreed, I wouldn’t have to abduct you now. But you’ve left me no choice.”
Harper struggled against him, trying to free herself, but he only laughed at her efforts. She stomped on his foot, kicked his shin, tried to bite his hand. She did everything she could to break away from him. When he started to drag her backwards, she dropped her keys, hoping someone would find them. If they knew she’d been taken from her home, maybe they would be able to track her. It was her only hope.
Maybe if she waited, an opportunity would present itself. If she were patient, maybe she could escape later. He couldn’t watch her forever. Sooner or later he would have to leave her alone, and that’s when she would make her escape.
She sagged against him, dragging her feet. Just because she couldn’t fight him right now didn’t mean she had to make it easy on him. She pretended to stumble and pushed against him, trying to knock him off balance. He merely cursed and held her tighter. Then her worst fear happened, he released her mouth, only to swing her up into his arms. If she wasn’t walking, there was no way for Ramsey to follow her scent.
A moment later, Trent shoved her into his blue truck.
“If you try to run, I’ll catch you. And you know I run faster than you,” he told her.
He slammed her door shut and walked around to the driver’s side, never taking his eyes off her. He got in and started the truck. Looking her way, he smiled.
“It’s just you and me now. Pretty soon, no one will be able to find us.”
Ramsey poured himself a cup of coffee and looked around the break room. Michael had kicked back on the sofa and had his eyes closed. Gabriel had just ducked out and gone back to the office.
“Slow day,” Michael commented.
“I’m sure we’ll get slammed either later today or tomorrow morning.”
“Yeah, but that doesn’t help pass the time right now.”
Ramsey grinned. “Why don’t you call your wife? That would help you pass the time.”
“She’s babysitting, remember?”
“Oh yeah.” Ramsey ran a hand through his hair. “Sorry she got stuck with baby duty.”
“Someone had to do it. Besides, she loves keeping the kids.”
Ramsey’s phone rang and he was surprised to see Kiera’s name on the display.
“Hey Kiera. Having a good time?”
“Um. About that… is Harper with you?”
Ramsey froze. “Isn’t she with you?”
“No. I mean, she was supposed to meet me…”
“Meet you?” He growled. “Meet you? God dammit, Kiera! You were supposed to pick her up! You knew I didn’t want her to be alone.”
“I’m sure she’s fine. Maybe she’s just late.”
“And not answering her phone? Because I’m going to assume you tried to call her.”
“I’m really sorry, Ramsey.”
“Kiera, if anything has happened to her, I’ll never forgive you for this.”
He disconnected the call and slammed his fist into the wall.
“What’s wrong?” Michael asked.
“Harper might be missing. I need to go home.”
Michael stood. “I’ll come with you.”
“I need to tell your brother where we’re going and why.”
Michael shook his head. “I’ll call him on the way. If something’s happened to her, we don’t have time to waste.”
Ramsey nodded and followed him out the door, anxious to check on his mate.
At the house, they found Harper’s purse beside her car and her keys partway down the driveway. Michael offered to track her and went in the backyard to shift into his wolf form. Returning to Ramsey’s side, he began to follow Harper’s trail. He sniffed his way down the driveway, through the wooded lot next to the house, and then stopped. He looked up and whined.
“The trail stops?”
The wolf nodded.
Ramsey fell to his knees. How was he supposed to find his mate if her trail disappeared? What was he going to do now?
Michael ran off, only to return a few minutes later on two legs and clothed once more.
“I already called Gabriel. He’s checking on Trent’s location,” Michael said.
“I told her I would protect her.”
Michael placed a hand on his shoulder. “It’s not your fault. You thought she’d be with Kiera. It’s not like you can stay home all the time.”
“That doesn’t change the fact that she’s missing. I have to find her. I have to…” He swallowed hard. “I can’t live without her.”
“I know, man. I understand. Don’t worry. We’re going to find her.”
“He could be anywhere.”
Michael helped him stand. “So let’s start at his home. Luna has to know something.”
Ramsey growled. “If she knew about this and didn’t warn us, I’ll kill her.”
“Let’s question her and see what she knows. She may be completely innocent.”
“I’m going to make a call on the way.”
Michael nodded and followed Ramsey to the SUV.
Luna stared at them with frightened eyes. Connor had met them at Trent’s apartment and the three wolves now circled the woman, hoping for answers. Ramsey wasn’t leaving until he was satisfied she was telling the truth. At the moment, she was their best lead.
“I swear, I don’t know anything!”
“He had to have dropped hints, Luna. I find it hard to believe you know absolutely nothing,” Ramsey said. “Even if it’s something small, any clue is better than none.”
“He spent all of yesterday packing. I thought he was getting ready for our move tomorrow,” she replied.
“Did he take anything with him? Can you tell if something is missing?” Connor asked.
“His large duffle bag was gone this morning.”
Michael stepped closer. “And you didn’t find that odd? Why would he take that with him unless he was going somewhere?”
“I don’t know,” she cried. “Maybe I wanted him to leave. I never wanted to be with him.”
“He’s your mate. Doesn’t that mean anything to you?” Connor asked. “You grew up in a pack. You should respect the bond you share with Trent.”
“If he ran off with Harper, it doesn’t sound like he respects it,” she said. “Why should I?”
“The Denver pack is still expecting you,” Ramsey told her. “Finish packing and leave town first thing tomorrow morning.”
“Alone?” She looked surprised.
“If you aren’t there by Sunday night, I’ll know. Don’t make me track you down and hand deliver you,” Ramsey said.
The three men took their leave and gathered by Ramsey’s Hummer. Unfortunately, they hadn’t learned much from Luna, but Ramsey’s worst fear had been confirmed – Trent planned to leave town and take Harper with him. Once they left Ashton Grove, Ramsey knew it was doubtful he would ever see his mate again. Just thinking about it made him want to howl in despair.
“I’m going to call the pack and make sure they’re watching for Trent,” Connor said. “Maybe one of them will know something. Gabriel’s already been calling our contacts, trying to find him.”
“I’ll do whatever I can to help,” Michael offered. “Just tell me what I can do.”
“Thanks,” Ramsey said. He ran a hand through his hair. “I’m going to call the Denver pack again. The alpha offered to send help if I needed it. I think I’m going to take him up on the offer.”
Connor nodded. “We’ll find someplace to put them when they get here. I’ll also put the word out to the other local packs to keep an eye out for Trent and Harper, just in case they aren’t in town anymore.”
Ramsey paled. “I can’t even think that. She has to be here somewhere. She can’t be far away.”
“No matter what it takes, we’ll get her back,” Connor assured him. “And when we find them, I won’t stand in your way if you decide to punish Trent.”
“I have something special in mind for him,” Ramsey growled. “He’ll wish he’d never come to Ashton Grove.”
“Just don’t kill him,” Michael said. “I’m not sure my brother would overlook that.”
“That’s going to depend on Trent. I’m going to do whatever is necessary to get Harper back. If he’s smart, he’ll just hand her over, and then he won’t get hurt.”
“Well, let’s go so we can start searching for her. Maybe she’ll be home by dinner.”
Ramsey grinned, but he wasn’t feeling very hopefully. Something told him it wasn’t going to be easy to find her. But he wasn’t going to rest until she was back in his arms. He hadn’t realized until now exactly how important she was to him. Knowing there was a chance he might never see her again terrified him.
“I need to call Hunter,” he told Michael. “He shouldn’t hear about this from Connor.”
Michael buckled his seatbelt. “Do whatever you’ve got to. Just drop me off along the way.”
Ramsey picked up his phone and called Hunter on the way back to the garage. He explained the situation and answered as many questions as he could. They agreed to meet at Ramsey’s house in twenty minutes.
After he hung up, he called the alpha of the Denver pack, accepting his offer of help. He told him the latest and his fear that Trent had left Ashton Grove already. The alpha assured him help would be on the way before the day was over.
Hunter held his head in his hands. “How could this have happened?”
“Kiera was reckless. If she’d just picked up Harper like she was supposed to, then none of this would have happened.”
by Jessica Coulter Smith / Romance / Young Adult / Science Fiction have rating 4 out of 5 / Based on32 votes