Read The Bad Wolf Online

Authors: Michelle Clay

The Bad Wolf (23 page)

BOOK: The Bad Wolf
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“Get some rest, Sheriff. You can return the keys in the morning when you come check on him.”

Mackie took the keys then shook Karen’s hand. “Thank you, doc. I appreciate it.”

Amy wordlessly trudged over to Karen’s car then fell inside. Jenna grinned up at Mackie. “Will you drop me off at my house? I’m sure my mom and dad is worried.”

“Of course,” Mackie
said.

Chloe turned to go back inside, to make sure her mom hadn’t had a nervous breakdown
in her absence. Mackie gripped her arm and pulled her into a bone crushing hug. “I can’t thank you enough, Chloe.”

He sat her down then hurried to Karen’s car. Within moments, they’d gone down the gra
vel road and were out of sight.

“I’m fine,” Karen reassured Chloe. “Go home and get some sleep
. I’ll see you in the morning.”

Ryan gripped Chloe’s hand and gave it a squeeze. Karen’s gaze darted to their clasped hands. “Go home. Alone.”

“Mom…”

Before Chloe could get started on an argument, Ryan said, “I’ll walk her to the door, Mrs. Williams, then I’ll be on my way.
I have a curfew too.”

Karen gave him a stern stare before her lips slowly eased into a smile. “That’s a good boy.”

Chapter Twenty-Nine

 

Ryan’s fingers linked with Chloe’s as they walked the gravel road. There was nowhere else he’d rather be at that moment. The moon hung in the sky, offering a little ambience. They didn’t say anything for a long while, simply being near each other was enough.

“I can’t believe you guys did that to my mom. I thought her mind was gonna blow out the back of her head.” Chloe smiled as she said it, indicating she wasn’t really angry.

“What better way to make her believe?” Ryan asked with a grin. “And maybe she won’t treat you like a pariah now that she’s seen your gift is the real deal.”

“Maybe,” Chloe said with a melancholy smile. “I would have preferred that no one knew.”

“Yeah, but they aren’t going to say anything. I’ll make sure of it.”

Chloe’s feet were dragging and she
stifled another yawned. He estimated it was at least eleven by now.

Finally, she stopped
then turned to face him. There was uncertainty in her voice. “Do you think they’ll really give Coach Lewis a fair trial?”

“He’s not a wolf, they have to.”
The night breeze was warm against his bare shoulders. “We have rules.”

“But he pretended to be a wolf.”

“Mackie is a man of his word. He’ll do the right thing.” Ryan smoothed her hair behind her ear then kissed her temple. “Hell, he’ll probably tell his kids to treat you like a princess from now on.”

Chloe smiled. “Yeah, I can imagine how Amy would respond to that.”

“Well, you can be my princess,” he said with a chuckle.

They began walking again
. The house was in view now and he worried that his time with her was coming to an end.

“So what happens now
?”

He cocked his head, unsure how
to answer. “What do you mean?”

“What are you going to do about the pack? Will you join them again?” Worry creased her brow and she avoided looking at him.
Was she was scared that he’d go back to Amy?

“Not a chance.” He walked backward and threw out his arms. “I’m a lone wolf, baby.”

Chloe laughed, her sweet voice rang out through the trees that surrounded them.

“With one exception.” He stopped walking so she’d smack into him. 

“Oh? And what’s that?” Chloe grinned as his arms wrapped around her waist and drew her closer.

“You and me, my beloved.
” He pressed a tender kiss to her lips. “We’ll be together and I don’t care who knows.”

Humor and relief danced in Chloe’s beautiful brown eyes. “Beloved. I like that.”

That one word sent a shiver through him. He took her in his arms, crushing her against his chest. “I love that.”

“Me too.”
Chloe hurried up the steps then turned to look at him.

Ryan grew serious as he reached around her to open the door. “You know what else I love?”

“Hmm?” Chloe asked as he followed her into the dark house.

“You.”
He wasn’t afraid to say it anymore. “I love you.”

Chloe turned to face him
and a beautiful smile lit her features. Placing her hands on both sides of his face, she pulled him down to her level. Before she had a chance to say anything, he pressed his lips against hers. Her smaller body melted against his as she rested her hands against his chest.

“Can you stay for a little while?”

There was uncertainty in Chloe’s voice and he wasn’t sure if it she was worried her mom might find out or if it was the idea of being alone with him. At some point, he knew he needed to explain to her that he’d never rush her into anything until she was certain.

“I can stay as long as you like,” he said with a
charming smile.

Taking his hand, she led him further into the house. “Who’s the bad wolf now?”

 

The End

BOOK: The Bad Wolf
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