Ten years ago, visions of death and the babble of lupine voices in his head drove lone wolf Brick Northridge to challenge his cruel and greedy pack Alpha. Beaten by the Alpha’s thugs and banished from the pack, Brick lives a life of seclusion in a mountain cabin in the Black Hills. Born into a rival clan of feline shifters, skinwalker Summer McCoy, in her guise as a raven, watches Brick from afar, giving him back a reason to live through her sweet songs and special gifts. But when her clan attempts to tear them apart and threatens the pack that banished Brick so many years before, will their love be strong enough to withstand the forces bent on their destruction?
Summer McCoy perched in the uppermost branches of her special Ponderosa pine, in raven guise, engaging in her favorite pastime, spying on the lone wolf chopping wood below. Two days’ worth of whiskers shadowed his rigid jaw. She loved when he forgot—or didn’t bother—to shave. Scruffy stubble suited him.
The sun beat down on the back of his bronzed neck and shone on his hair, the color of roasted coffee, a shade lighter than the dark shadow that charcoaled his face.
She fluffed her feathers in anticipation. Take your shirt off, Brick.
She’d heard the giant werebear, Gee, call him that name a decade ago. He’d made some joke about a wall and the hardness of the male’s head. But Brick hadn’t laughed back then. Not ever.
He’d fascinated her from the moment he’d arrived in the glade, bruised and battered. Once she’d learned his name, she’d treasured it, taking pleasure from repeating it often. Secretly, of course. Unwrapping the syllable frequently to admire its radiance in the privacy of her tree house, the way a woman wearing pearls against her warm skin enhanced their luminosity and iridescence.
Now, as if he’d heard her silent urging, he complied with her plea, shrugging out of the plaid flannel and flinging it onto a tree stump. Her beak opened as she sucked in breath. Sweat glistened on his torso, glazing rippling pecs and abs, shoulders broad enough to span the Badlands. A huge, incredible specimen of masculinity. Thick biceps flexed as he wielded the ax. Her heart beat faster than a hummingbird’s wings. Heat licked her.