Anthony Holsteen hasn’t been in the same state as his brother, Dixon, in nearly a century. While they keep tabs on each other and talk a couple of times a year, they do better while far apart. All that changes when Dixon tells Anthony about the many problems his new wolf shifter pack is facing—government conspiracy, witches, humans being turned into shifters, and to top it off, a bigoted sheriff forced into retirement. While Anthony knows that living in close proximity to Dixon could create waves, he accepts the position of sheriff. After all, he would prefer to be in the know when it comes to those causing problems with paranormals.
Even though Dixon has warned Anthony that most of the wolf shifters in his new pack have found their fated mates, he doesn’t expect it to happen to him. He isn’t a wolf, after all. His kind are deadly and feared and rarely find their mates. The scent of one of the altered humans, however, is undeniable. Anthony realizes that Crew Kester is his mate. Except, Crew isn’t gay and is just coming to terms with being a shifter. The man runs.
Can Anthony put aside his dominant nature long enough to accept aid from a pack he doesn’t know so he can win the trust of a confused and wary Crew, not to mention his affection?
Wrapping the towel around his waist, Anthony Holsteen stepped from the shower. He used a hand to wipe the steam from the mirror. Grabbing another towel, he dried his face before peering at himself in the glass.
“Are you really serious about doing this?” he whispered to himself.
Anthony shook his head at himself before picking up his razor. “Guess I am,” he mumbled, then started grooming.
As Anthony finished his morning routine, he thought about the phone call he’d received two days before. For almost a century, he and his older brother, Dixon, had kept clear of each other. While they kept tabs on each other, and knew they would always have each other’s backs, if need be, they never resided in the same state. Before the invention of the phone, it had been harder, and they’d mailed letters. With the creation of the phone, they talked on their birthdays…and that was it.
It worked for them as they were both dominant sons of bitches, and if they didn’t see eye-to-eye on something, neither of them would back down. They’d trashed more than one living room and deck chair. To save their relationship, they’d agreed to keep apart from each other.
Except, Dixon had called him two days before...and it wasn’t either of their birthdays. He’d asked him to meet with him in Stone Ridge at his alpha’s home. Then he’d shared some issues that not only the pack, but the paranormal world in general, were facing.
To say Anthony had been blown away had been an understatement—government conspiracies, the CIA knowing about paranormals, problems with witches, contact with the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and more. Then Dixon had shocked him even further by asking if he would be interested in taking over the town’s sheriff position.
Unable to help himself, Anthony had asked, “Live in not only the same state, but the same town? Are you certain that’s a wise idea?”
Dixon had told him, “You’re my brother, Anthony. My only family. Don’t you think it’s about time we figured out how to get along?” After a couple of heartbeats, he’d added, “And I want you to meet my mate.”
Anthony was overjoyed that Dixon had found his mate. His brother deserved that happiness. When Dixon had explained that many of the wolf shifters in the pack had found their mates, Anthony had felt a pang of regret. Unlike his brother, he wasn’t a wolf shifter. He’d taken after his mother, who was a poison dart frog shifter. Their parents had not been fated mates, and they were no longer together. In truth, Anthony wasn’t even certain if they were alive. He doubted Dixon did, either.
Dismissing those unproductive thoughts, Anthony finished his morning routine. He walked out of the hotel room’s bathroom and spotted his prior night’s trick still asleep on the bed. The human lay sprawled on his stomach, the sheet around his thighs and his firm ass on clear display.
Staring at the globes, Anthony felt his prick twitch. He smirked as he crossed to the bed. After sliding his palm over the delectable flesh he’d enjoyed gripping half the night, Anthony gave it a squeeze before releasing it. Then he pulled the sheet higher, covering the distracting view.
Anthony had picked up the man at a bar a few streets over for stress relief. The shower was meant to wash off the scent of sex. He had no desire to meet Alpha Declan McIntire smelling of sweat and cum, so fucking the human again would undo all Anthony’s hard work. He’d have to shower a second time, which would mean he would be late for his meeting with the alpha wolf shifter. That would culminate in stress, and relieving stress had been the entire point of picking up the human.
Shaking his head, Anthony crossed to his duffle bag and began pulling out clean clothes. The large bag contained just about the sum of his worldly possessions. His motorcycle outside rounded out the rest.
Anthony liked to keep his options open, and he rarely stayed in one place for more than six months. He enjoyed the nomadic life. That was another reason he couldn’t figure out why he’d agreed to meet with Alpha Declan and his brother, who happened to be the pack beta.
How the hell will I tolerate staying in one place for the foreseeable future?
“Hey.” The human’s sleep-heavy voice filled the hotel room. “You leavin’?”
“Yeah.” After buttoning his jeans, Anthony turned to eye the man in the bed. “I have a meeting to get to.” The man’s sleep-tousled dark hair fell in his face, half-hiding his green eyes. “The room’s check-out is eleven, Brad, so you have a few hours to sleep if you want.”
Brad’s eyes narrowed, and he scowled. “My name’s Chad.”
Anthony shrugged into his undershirt. “Okay. Chad then.” He picked up his Henley sweater next.
“You’re kinda an asshole,” Chad grumbled, sitting up and swinging his legs over the side of the bed.
Sitting in a chair, Anthony laughed. “Sure, Chad. I’m an asshole.” He knew he was, too. As he pulled on his socks, he watched Chad stalk toward the bathroom. Before the door closed, Anthony couldn’t help but point out, “But this asshole fucked your ass so good last night that you came three times.”
Chad paused in the doorway and looked back at him. A smirk curved his lips. “Fair enough.” Then he barked a laugh. “Besides, I can’t remember your name, either.”
Anthony laughed as Chad shut the door. He didn’t mind that in the least.
After shoving his feet into his biker boots, he pulled on his leather jacket. He double-checked that he had everything and headed toward the door. As he slipped from the room, he heard the shower start.