“Any idea who did this to my daughter?” Uncle Steve’s voice was low and threatening. His hand reached out and stroked Chloe’s hair.
“I have some theories, but until I’m sure, I’m not going to say anything. Don’t ask me, I won’t tell you.”
And that was when Bunny realized exactly what sort of man stood in front of them. Anderson radiated an aura of power he’d only felt once before. “You’re a Hunter.”
“I had a friend once, James. He’s a Hunter.” It had been a long time since he’d seen James. He was the Bear Senator as well as a Hunter. He was a charming rogue with a core of steel. The aura of power faded, leaving Bunny feeling a little off balance.
Bunny snorted. He’d heard more than one person use that tone of voice when describing James. Hell, he’d heard him called much worse than that.
“He’s also the reason we’re in this fix with Chloe and Jim, in a roundabout sort of way. He convinced me not to claim Sarah before I left, Sarah and I almost imploded and we each turned to other people to get over it. Chloe and I were friends and we talked a lot. I asked her to keep an eye on Sarah. Sarah started hanging out a lot with Jim Woods, Chloe’s destined mate, and Chloe got jealous. I don’t think she even realized what she was doing, but Chloe was the one who had everyone thinking we were dating.” He shook his head. “If I hadn’t come back when I did, both Chloe and I could have lost our mates.”
Bunny winced in sympathy. He couldn’t begin to imagine spending eternity without Tabby now that he’d had her. But to lose her before he got to claim her would have been torture.
“It doesn’t surprise me that James told you to hold off on your mating. He doesn’t believe Hunters should be mated at all.” Bunny shared a glance with Anderson.
Someday James Barnwell would find his own mate, and when he did, he knew exactly how the Hunter would react.
Poor girl. I hope I get to watch the mighty Hunter fall. The sheriff was watching him, a questioning look on his face. “When he finds her, call me. I’ll bring the popcorn.”
“I hope this Jim person gets here soon,” Uncle Steve said, his hands curling into fists at his sides.
“I just hope she responds to him.” Ryan stalked out of the room, his tension obvious. Watching his baby sister lying motionless in that hospital bed was hitting the other man hard.
Bunny held out his hand, pointing to the door Ryan had just walked out. “Could I ask you a few questions outside?” He led the way after Anderson nodded his agreement. He made sure the door was shut before asking the question burning in his gut. “Tabby got a phone call this morning, and I need to know if this person is a threat to her or not. And before you ask, she’s refusing to talk to me about it.”
When Anderson’s midnight blue eyes turned to gold, Bunny knew the answer.
Tabby winced. Cyn was behind her, guarding the end of the counter, trapping her behind glass and artwork. Glory was leaning over the counter, her face full of mischief. The shop was empty, and the moment she’d been dreading all day was finally here. Her nosy-ass friends had her cornered. “So what?”
The two women exchanged a glance. “How was it?”
Glory’s head tipped back, exposing the long line of her neck. “Oh, Bunny ,” she moaned. “Bunny, Bunny,” she chanted, each one becoming more breathless, until, “ Bunny! ”
Cyn was laughing her ass off as Glory faked an orgasm. What neither woman saw was Ryan right outside the door, his eyes narrowed as he glared at Glory. When Glory threw her head back and shuddered, his fists clenched, his eyes turning deep, dark brown.
If Glory didn’t stop, Ryan was going to do something seriously drastic. She just hoped drastic didn’t involve Ryan’s claws and Alex’s face.
Glory giggled and waved her hands like a hula dancer. “Well? How was the motion of his ocean?”
“Screw that.” Cyn propped one hip against the counter. “I want to know about the size of his boat.” She held her hands at least seven inches apart and waggled her eyebrows.
The bell over the door jingled and Ryan sauntered in, his gaze glued to Glory.
Cyn pushed herself back up. “Don’t sweat it, Glory. It’s not like we won’t get it out of her once we get home.”
Glory nodded, looking angelic. “Yup. We know her weakness.”
“All we have to do…” Cyn smirked.
“…is break out the box…” Glory was smiling that innocent pixie smile that fooled only the very young, the very old, and the terminally stupid.
“…and hide all her shoes.” The triumph in Cyn’s voice demanded retribution. Too bad Cyn didn’t seem to have a weakness.
Tabby glared at her so-called friends. “I hate you bitches.” They would, too. The only hope her poor shoes had was if she got home before they did and managed to hide them all.
“Is this a private party or can anyone join?”
She would have lost it if she hadn’t heard the bell again. “Hey, Julian!”
“Julian Ducharme?” Ryan held out his hand when Julian nodded. “Ryan Williams, Chloe’s brother.”
Julian took Ryan’s hand and shook it. “How’s she doing?”
“She hasn’t woken up.” The anger and grief in Ryan’s voice was unmistakable. “I owe you.”
“My sister would have died on that street if you hadn’t risked your life like that.
My family is in your debt.”
Tabby saw Julian’s jaw clench for a moment and wondered at it. “Any one of us would have done the same.”