Read Forbidden Bear Online

Authors: Harmony Raines

Tags: #General Fiction

Forbidden Bear (8 page)

BOOK: Forbidden Bear
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“We do plenty,” said Ethan, coming over with another guy, who was introduced as Kris. “But mainly, we try to help people of Bear Creek out.”

“You’re the good guys, then?” Mia asked.

“Yes. Not that we’ve ever been bad. But we help Will out when he needs us. Joel here is good with the numbers, and the paperwork. Then we channel money back into the community. Someone’s roof comes off in a storm, we’re there.”

She laughed. “Like modern-day Robin Hoods.”

“Yes, only we don’t steal from the rich; he just gives us the money,” Kris said.

“I wish Wolf Valley worked like that.”

“I’m sorry how things are there.” Ethan sounded genuine when he added, “You should come and live in Bear Creek until it all settles down.”

“That is tempting,” Mia said. “If Joel would have me, of course.”

“I would come with you right now and collect your things if you wanted to move in here with me.” Joel touched her hand, sending shockwaves through her body. She didn’t want to go home and collect anything, because she didn’t want to leave his side.

“Soon, Joel. I promise. I just have to sort a few things out first.” She leaned over and kissed his cheek. “Will you be patient with me?”

“Take all the time you need, Mia. I’m not going anywhere.” He placed his arm around her waist and pulled her close.

“Joel will just have to put up us instead,” another guy said, coming to join them.

“This is Ion, the youngest of our gang,” Joel said.

“And the best looking. He always forgets to mention that.” Ion kissed her hand and winked at her. “The most charming, too.”

“Hands off, Ion,” Joel said, joking, although there was a hint of possessiveness in his voice. A thing she could understand when she looked around the bar and saw the envious eyes of other women on her mate. If one of them so much as touched Joel, she would probably tear their throats out.

Not that she need worry, because despite being surrounded by all of these charming and good-looking men, the only person she desired was Joel, and she knew he shared the same view about loyalty to his mate.

Soon
, she promised herself. Yes, soon she would move here to be with him. She just needed to sort out her mom and Kurt and then break the news to her own gang they would need a new leader. She didn’t think Kurt would want the job back, and maybe it was time they had new blood in charge, after all.

 

Chapter Eighteen – Joel

“Morning, guys, you are here early. What’s going on?” Joel opened the door to the hangout, and in walked Will, Ion, Kris, and Ethan. Unusually early and looking as if they had something on their minds.

“We got our heads together last night and decided that we ought to give Mia a bit of a hand,” Ion said, going to put the coffee on.

“What kind of hand?” Joel asked.

“Kris got a buyer for those phones. We take that money and turn it into something bigger. It should help secure Mia’s place in the gang; that way there should be no more infighting,” Ethan said as they all took their places around the table where they met each morning.

“You don’t have to get involved, I know we’ve moved away from this kind of thing,” Joel said, happy that his friends had been thinking about helping his mate out. It proved to him there would be no trouble accepting his little wolf into their close-knit family.

“Old times’ sake,” Ion said, taking a cup of coffee from Ethan. “I’m getting itchy feet.”

“Me too. The corporate life is nothing compared to the thrill of riding your bike. Adrenaline flooding your veins. I miss those days.”

“Freyja would skin your bear hide if she heard you say that,” Ethan joked.

“She understands what makes me tick,” Will said.

“Until you get into a fight,” Kris joked.

“Anyway, what did you have in mind?” Joel intervened before a fight broke out right here in the bar.

“Computer chips. A nice step-up from phones, smaller, more chance of selling them on for a higher price. Less competition and above all else, not stolen,” Will finished.

“Computer chips doesn’t exactly say lawless bikers, does it?” Ethan grinned. “But then, I guess we’ve always stayed on the right side of the law.”

“I know it’s not exciting. But we get to ride together, take those wolves too. Do the deal, head over to the seller, buy the chips, and then I can resell them. It will make some cash for Mia.”

“Let’s do it. It’s been months since we’ve ridden together,” Joel said.

“I’ll arrange the trade to be at night. I always preferred riding at night.” Will placed his coffee cup down on the table.

“Means you can still do your nine-to-five too, city boy.”

“Funny, real funny. I wouldn’t be surprised if your tires were mysteriously punctured that night so that I don’t have to listen to your smart mouth.”

Ethan blew Will a kiss, and that was when a roar sounded and Will dived for Ethan.

“Just like old times,” Joel said, but he was pleased they had come up with a plan to help Mia gain the respect of her gang once more. They owed her; after all, they were the ones who had messed everything up for her.

 

Chapter Nineteen – Mia

“What the hell?” She had taken the call from Joel and ridden out to meet him. She hadn’t expected all of the bears to be there.

“Hi, Mia. We have a proposition.” Joel removed his helmet and walked over to her.

Mia parked her bike and took her helmet off too. Going up to Joel, she kissed him on the cheek and then asked, “What kind of proposition?”

“Will came up with an idea to get you back in favour.”

“Joel, I appreciate that. But I’ve been giving it some thought and I am going to hand the presidency to one of the others.”

“You are?” He looked over to where the others were waiting. “Are you sure you don’t want in on this? One last deal.”

“I don’t want you or the others getting mixed up with us. It’s not good for you. I aimed to tell them tonight and then come over to your place after. I might need to keep my head down for a day or two once they know about you.”

“I’ll come with you.”

“This is something I should do on my own.”

“It scares me.” He touched her arm, and she knew he wanted to be there, to protect her. Yet his presence was only ever going to make things worse.

“I can handle it,” she assured him.

“I know you can, but it still scares me,” he said softly.

“OK. I’ll tell you what. My mom wants to meet you. I know she would prefer some warning. But why not come with me to meet her and then I’ll go over to the hangout. If there’s trouble you’ll be close by.”

“Now?”

“Oh, you want to go with your gang?” Of course, he would. They had made arrangements and now she was messing them up. “Don’t worry, I’ll handle this and then meet you.”

“It’s not that.” He looked nervous. “It’s meeting your mom. What if she doesn’t like me?”

“She will. Although don’t tell her you were going on some deal. I told her you were a reformed character.” Mia smiled to herself at his fear of her mom. He had nothing to worry about; all her mom wanted was to get her children out of Wolf Valley, even if that meant Mia going to live in Bear Creek.

“I need to speak to the others.” Joel backed away and then turned to go over to his friends.

She waited, unable to hear what was being said. But eventually he turned and walked back, smiling.

“What did they say?”

“Oh, something about a bear with a collar and leash.”

“Really? Look, we can put this off.”

“They were joking. They are going to do the first part of the deal and then we meet them back here. I have this fantasy, where we ride with them. You are on the back of my bike and then when we’ve finished we go someplace and, well … I’ll let you fill in the rest.”

“On the back? I am used to being in the driving seat.” Then a thought came to her. “Sure. That sounds like a plan, If you go on the back of my bike now. That way no one will see a strange bike in Wolf Valley and ask any questions.”

“On the back of
your
bike?”

“Don’t you trust your mate, Joel? Or are you a control freak?”

“I trust you enough. It’s only… you want me to get on the back of your bike and go into wolf territory—what if I need a quick getaway?”

“Then I am your girl. Come on. I’ll look after you.” She cocked her head on one side and raised an eyebrow. “We’ll be an hour at most. I drop you off at my house and then I go over and break the news to the others. I come back, we leave.”

He shook his head, still not sure.

Mia went to him, her hand going to rub his cock though his leather pants. Feeling him harden, she came up with a new idea, which was to forget about it all and just head back to his place so he could make love to her. Instead, she whispered, “I’m all packed and ready to go. We will get to spend tonight together and then every night for the rest of our lives.”

He groaned, unable to resist. “I am putting my life in your hands, Mia.”

“Don’t worry; I am never going to let anything happen to you.” Then she put her helmet on and climbed onto her bike.

He smiled, and she wondered what he thought about having a woman speak to him like that. By the look on his face, Joel appeared to like it, the thought of his female being willing to lay down her life for him. Well, perhaps that was a little romantic. But she would fight to protect him in the same way he would fight to protect her.

Making sure his bike was well off the road and secure, he slipped his leg over her bike and sat down. It took him a minute or two to get comfortable, and she waited patiently, assuming he had never ridden pillion before.

When he had finally settled down, with his arms wrapped around her, his hands sneaking far higher up her body towards her breasts than any other man would have dared, she kicked the bike into action and took off at speed. Joel tightened his grip and she was sure she heard him curse under his breath.

This was going to be fun.

Taking the twists and turns at a fast, but safe, speed, she grew used to having him on the back and adjusted her actions to anticipate the movements of his big body. All too soon, they were on the outskirts of town, and she could feel him tense as they sped past more houses. Mia suddenly became acutely aware of how dangerous this was. Bringing a bear into wolf territory.

He
should
be under her protection, but she wasn’t sure those rules still applied. However, she relaxed as she pulled into the driveway of her house and saw the lights on. Her mom was home. Mia could introduce Joel to her, go across town to tell Traff he was welcome to the title of president if he wanted it, and then ride off into her new future with Joel.

Taking her bike right up to the house, she waited for Joel to dismount and then did the same, both keeping their helmets on until they were at the front door. Only when Joel was inside did he take it off. Mia had never seen him looking so uneasy.

“There’s someone here,” he said, sniffing the air.

“Yes, my mom,” she said taking his helmet from him.

“No, there’s a male here too.”

“My brother used to live here. Is that what you can smell?” She took a sniff of the air but couldn’t smell anything different, but then she was immune to the smell of wolf to some extent.

“Too fresh.”

At that moment, the door of the kitchen opened and her mom came out looking very excited, and then she saw Joel. “Oh, Mia, I didn’t know we were having guests.” Her mom looked slightly uneasy, and Mia’s heart turned to stone. Joel was right; there was someone else here.

“Joel,” she said brightly. “This is my mom, and this is my brother, Kurt.” Of all the days for him to decide to come home, it had to be today. Not that she could feel angry with him or her mom: she had encouraged it, after all.

The four of them froze, and Mia wondered if she was going to have to get between her brother and her mate. She could tell her mom was thinking the same thing. However, Kurt moved forward, his body language relaxed, no tension showing at all.

“Hello, Joel. I’m Kurt, the black wolf of the family.” Kurt offered his hand, and they all waited for Joel’s response.

“Kurt,” he said, a little sharply, and there was a definite hesitation before he shook hands with the wolf.

“That wasn’t so bad, was it, boys?” Her mom stepped forward now, putting herself between the two men, and Mia was thankful for the break in tension when she hugged Joel and said, “Welcome to the family. We’re not exactly conventional, but I’m sure we’ll all get along.”

“Nice to meet you, I’m sure we will,” Joel answered, although his eyes still flicked nervously towards Kurt.

“Tea?” her mom asked.

“Actually, I’m not staying,” Mia said. “I was hoping to leave Joel here with you while I go over to the hangout.” She turned to face Kurt. “I plan to hand the presidency over to one of the others, but since you are here, do you want to take it back yourself, Kurt? I suppose it is still rightfully yours.”

“Oh no, Mia,” he said, holding up his hands. “I want nothing to do with any of that. In fact, Mom and I have been discussing a move to the mountains. I want to paint, so we could do with some more space.”

“You have?” she asked her mom.

“Well, yes, you are moving out to be with Joel, and we thought getting out of Wolf Valley might be the best thing for us all.”

“I see. That’s probably for the best, in light of what’s happened,” Mia said, although she sounded petulant. Her mom was willing to take Kurt back with open arms and then up sticks and move because he wanted to paint.

“Yes,” her mom said, looking at Joel and then back to Mia. “I’m not sure we will be welcome once it comes out that you are with a bear.”

“Oh.” She hung her head, feeling ashamed that she still wanted to blame Kurt for everything. “Of course.”

“Mountain air will do us both good, won’t it, Kurt?” her mom said, trying to include Kurt in the conversation again.

“It sure will. Although right now it all seems a little strange, you know, being outside.” An expression Mia had never seen flicked across his face; he really was unsure of being here in the house. But then he asked, “Mia, do you want me to come as back up? For when you tell the gang?”

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