Home > Force of Temptation (The Mercury Pack #2)(8)

Force of Temptation (The Mercury Pack #2)(8)
Author: Suzanne Wright

“And they threatened you,” Jesse prompted.

“Like I said, sort of. They told me I should have died with my brother, but they never actually threatened to kill me. Although they did threaten to sneak into my hotel room while I was asleep and . . . you know.”

Fury coursed through Jesse, and his wolf’s claws sliced out. “Dammit, Harley, you should have come to me with this.”

Her brow furrowed. “Why would I? I haven’t seen or heard from you in three years.”

“What does that have to do with anything?”

“It meant you were hardly going to be my first port of call if I thought I needed help.”

Well, he damn well should have been. “You need to come with me.”

Harley almost gawked. “Huh?”

“My territory is secure, guarded, and extremely difficult to invade without an intruder announcing their presence. I can protect you there. You won’t be safe on your own.” Jesse grit his teeth when she lifted her chin stubbornly, exposing the delicate neck that he’d once wrapped his hand around as he powered into her. His cock jerked at the memory.

Jesse took a deep, calming breath. Harley’s dominance was subtle—probably because she was used to being among humans where she didn’t need to wear it like a cloak. But he knew it was there, knew there was only so far he could push her before she’d shut him out. Besides, the “you need me to keep you safe” routine wouldn’t get him anywhere with a dominant female shifter. They were very proud creatures.

He moved closer, jaw tight. “Sweetheart, these assholes want you dead.”

“I know that.”

“But you don’t know what they look like, do you? They could walk right in here, buy themselves a drink, and settle at a table . . . and you’d never know it was them. They could walk right by you, smile at you, compliment your performance, and you wouldn’t have a clue.”

She clenched her fists. “You think I don’t know that?”

“No, I think you do know. And I think you also know that having my protection would be a very smart thing.”

“I’ll go to the police.”

“Ah, baby, you know the humans are very unlikely to help. You’re half human, but you’re also Clive Vincent’s daughter, and law enforcement doesn’t like him much.”

Harley knew he was right. She hated that he was right. “Why would you want to throw yourself in the middle of this mess? You don’t need to get involved.”

“I already am involved. There’s no way I’m going to ignore that you’re in danger. I know the last thing you feel you can do is depend on shifters for anything, but you know me, Harley. You know I’ll keep you safe.” And he wasn’t leaving without her.

“Taking me with you could lead the extremists to your pack,” she pointed out.

“They’re terrified of Nick; they won’t come there.” Not after what had happened the last time extremists had tangled with their pack. “Even if they did, they wouldn’t get to you. At the hotel, you’re vulnerable. And, quite frankly, I don’t know why you would want that. Don’t make this easy for them, Harley. Be smart.” He ate up the tiny bit of distance between them and said softly, “Come with me.”

She should say no. She should stay away from this male who had the singular ability to tie her in knots, especially since going with him meant staying with his pack. But, really, what other choices did she have? He was right; alone, she was vulnerable and an easy target. Of course she could go and stay with Tess, but she didn’t want to take trouble to her aunt’s door. The Mercury wolves would be able to handle that trouble. And she didn’t believe for even a moment that Jesse would let this go. He would hound her and hound her until she agreed.

She swallowed. “Call your Alphas. If they okay it, I’ll go with you.”


All right, so she hadn’t actually expected his Alphas to okay it. She was an outsider, half human, half feline, and had extremists on her ass. Some extremists were all talk, but these particular humans were prepared to use car bombs, so it didn’t seem logical that the wolves would accept her on their territory. But after a very brief call outside her boss’s office, Jesse had returned with the news that his Alphas would protect her. That had totally shocked the shit out of her.

On the one hand, she appreciated it. Sure, part of her bristled at accepting help—she was a dominant female, after all. But she’d rather be bristling and alive than be proud and dead.

Another part of her, however, was wary about the whole situation. She hadn’t spent much time around shifters since coming to live with Tess. Shifters behaved differently and played by a different set of rules. Harley wasn’t interested in following any such rules.

What made her most wary about leaving with Jesse was . . . well, Jesse. He was hard to read and could be very compelling when he switched on the intensity—both had a way of keeping her off-balance. Still, that might not have been so bad if her body didn’t respond so easily and strongly to his. It gave him a level of power over her that she did not like. And he was just so big, so dominant, so . . . everything. What’s more, he was shoving his way into her business.

“Here we are.”

His words broke into her thoughts. As they drove along a dirt path that was littered with leaves, Harley admired the tall, regal trees on either side. They all had typical territorial animal markings that served to warn away humans and other shifters.

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