Sequel to Night Terror
It’s January and Professor Sean Sanderson has a little time off, though it’s anything but relaxing. Between a Guild initiation and a birthday, he’s stressed, and that’s before he and Dane, his Decrypter boyfriend, learn a werewolf has been murdered. The local Packs are at each other’s throats about the death and don’t want either Sean or Dane getting involved, which they’d be glad to do ... if the werewolf in question hadn’t reappeared as a violent ghost.
Just when they have their hands full trying to dodge around Pack politics and track down a werewolf ghost before he hurts anyone, Dane’s parents show up at his coffee shop. They have no idea their son is a Decrypter, and they have no intention of leaving until they spend some quality family time together.
“You have rope, right?” he asked.
“Regular and two kinds of silver-treated,” said Dane. “Murderer would’ve used the silver so Wolff couldn’t shift to were form. Ballsy, considering if they were also a werewolf, it would’ve been hard to handle. They would have to go after him in human form. You wanna see some? Put your witch hands all over it? Commune with the silver?”
“No,” said Sean, scowling.
“Yeah, it affects you too, doesn’t it?”
“How are you still not over the fact I’m a witch? It’s more I want to see how hard it is to tie someone up like that.”
“Got it all in the Lair,” said Dane. “Gotta drop by Crypt Coffee anyway. The staff is shit over winter break. Don’t see how the assholes can’t come to work when they have less to do.”
Sean smiled at that. As much as Dane acted immature himself, when it came to it he really did feel his age. Late twenties and already griping about the college students’ work ethic.
“Says the man who’s never washed his sheets,” said Sean.
When they arrived, Sean went down to the Lair and tracked down the rope. Of the two types of silver-treated, he chose the silver coated rope—not because he liked it better than the rope with silver threads in it, but because he figured that’s what would work better on a werewolf. It made him surprisingly uneasy when he touched it and his free hand immediately went for the crystal he kept in his pocket.
Dane was right. It did affect him. It seemed to severely limit his ability to access magical forces, even channel them with his crystal. Sean swallowed.
“Well?” asked Dane, suddenly behind him. “The rope tell you anything?”
“We should try it out,” said Sean, words out of his mouth before he stopped to consider. “See the mechanics of it.”
“I don’t want to hurt you, professor,” said Dane, considering his selection of booze.
Sean frowned, annoyed. He hated Dane treating him like some sort of fragile, incompetent child. After everything they’d been through -- hell, after how rough the sex sometimes got -- Dane should know Sean wasn’t someone who broke easily. He crossed to Dane, rope in hand.
“Then I’ll tie you up,” he said, and grabbed Dane’s arm.
Dane blinked at him, something in his eyes stirring dangerously. Whenever Sean grabbed him suddenly Dane looked like he was about to put his fist in Sean’s face. But he never did. That level of jumpiness made more sense the longer Sean was with him.
“Come on. Post’s over here.”
Sean shoved him toward one of the basement’s support poles and Dane stumbled forward a few steps before turning back to him. He’d completely recovered from his violent urges and was grinning now.
“You really think you can make me do anything, professor?”
Sean stepped up to Dane and placed a palm against his chest, pushed. Dane grabbed his arm and twisted; Sean dropped the rope and went with Dane’s movement, then through it, shouldering him backward.
“Damn, you’re serious,” said Dane. “I still don’t want to hurt --”
He yelped as Sean pushed his thumb back and twisted his arm.
“Roderick would’ve fought back,” said Sean. “If I can tie you up then it proves one person could do it alone.”
And he was determined to show Dane he could hold his own. The desire to make Dane submit, physically submit, after all his posturing, was strong. Didn’t help that Sean had been bottom the past few weeks, that Dane was blowing off his interest in the murder. When Dane twisted out of Sean’s grip again Sean moved forward immediately, trying to get him to back up to the post.
“Fight back already. I know you like to punch things.”
Dane threw an easy punch, the kind he’d been teaching Sean to deal with. Sean’s irritation spiked and he glared at Dane, tried to put the full force of his displeasure at being treated like he was incompetent behind it.
Dane’s expression blanked. His motions became slower and he blinked hard; Sean pushed him back against the post so hard he heard it and Dane’s breath came out in a rush. Sean went for the rope and when he turned back, Dane was catching his breath and glaring.
“The fuck, professor?” he asked, eyeing Sean as he advanced.
Sean grinned. He was going to enjoy tying Dane up.