Koda's found his sister, Winnie, and now he's made a life for himself in Gray Ridge, Colorado. As a bear shifter, he's naturally a loner, and with so few females around, he's resigned to never finding his mate. But when he stumbles upon a woman in the woods, his whole world changes.
Snow's been on the run and has made a makeshift family with a band of seven wanderers. While resting in the woods and waiting for them to come back, something big finds her.
When Koda and Snow collide, they realize their stories are woven together more tightly than they could have imagined. Will the truth break their mates bond? Or will it bind them closer together?
Warning: This fairy-tale shifter story is full of alpha sweetness with a side of growly bear. What's not to love?! If you love a classic story with a dirty twist, then get your click on!
It’s still dark when I wake up with a jolt, the cold sweat covering my naked body. It takes me a moment, like it always does, to remember where I am and that I’m safe. The seconds tick by, and my breathing evens out. Rubbing my hands against my eyes, I remind myself that I’m not in a cage.
I give up on sleep and get up from the bed. I make my way to the bathroom, turn on the shower, and get in before the water has a chance to warm up. I’m used to cold showers after being denied the luxury of hot water for so long and then having to bathe in rivers when I escaped.
I soap up and try not to think about my past, but it always comes flooding back after a nightmare. I can’t seem to stop it, so I just have to ride it out until all the feelings pass. This dream was like so many before, most of it exactly the same, but sometimes my mind likes to add in details that weren’t there, just to fuck with me.
This time when I was dreaming, I was in the cage again. The one they kept me locked in unless they were running tests. They had a theory that if shifters were kept in small places, they would be less likely, or unable, to shift.
In this dream, I was in the cage, and I could hear Winnie crying. I know this didn’t happen because Winnie was never captured with me. She got away. I always have to remind myself of that. We were young when we were caught, but she fought and was able to get free. I was too drugged up to know what happened, and all I could remember was waking up in a cell without her.
I'd learned over the years that we were taken by a company that was doing research on shifters. They kept us as if we were animals in a lab. It was a horrible time in my life, and ever since I broke free, my only goal was finding my sister. When I found her, it was only to see that she had amnesia and was being cared for here in Gray Ridge. Winnie had gotten lucky, and Alpha Stone had taken her into the pack and kept her safe. When I found her, and when her memories came back, I felt like my journey had finally come to an end.
Only it didn’t.
I’m a bear shifter, and there aren’t as many of us as there are of other species. Even fewer bear shifter females exist. When Winnie mated with Alpha Stone, I could have left, but I didn’t want to. Bears aren’t normally pack animals, but they are close to their families. I couldn’t move away from Winnie after finally finding her, even though she was mated.
Thankfully, Alpha Stone welcomed me into the pack and gave me some land. Xavier, one of the wolf shifters, and I built my cabin out here to give me some space away from the pack and also to have a way to stay close to Winnie.
I’d been in captivity for so long that I was worried I wouldn’t be able to adjust to pack life. But Xavier had gone through some trauma before he met his mate, and he was able to give me some advice to help me cope.
When we built the house, he helped me put in extra security measures so that I could feel safe again. My nightmares used to be a lot worse, and I think he knew it. So to help, we installed bolted locks both inside and outside the entry points of the house. The locks are in place in a way that no one is going in or out of my home without my permission. The extra security helps me sleep. As long as the nightmares don’t creep in.
When I’ve finished showering, I make myself breakfast and have coffee. My life is very quiet, and I don’t have many friends—just the Gray Ridge pack people who Winnie makes me hang out with. I look over at the counter and see an invitation to a kid’s birthday party at Xavier and Gwen’s home. I know I should want to go and be around everyone, but I feel myself getting tired and wanting to hibernate.
I let out a long sigh and try to shake off the dark mood. Internally, I know that I’m safe and everything is okay. I’m just getting used to the world again. Also being around a lot of happy mated couples can start to wear on any single shifter after a while. There’s a longing that comes with wanting to find your mate, and knowing I probably never will sends another wave of sadness over me.
Closing my eyes, I see dark hair and blue eyes. I try to grab on to the image, but it’s gone like smoke through my fingers. I think of the image every time I think about finding my mate. I don’t even know where the image is from or how I remember it, but something about it is familiar.
I push away from the table and clean up the kitchen. When I finish, I look outside. The sun has come up and it’s starting to snow a bit. I love this time of year. The cool air and the clean smells of the forest calm my bear. I feel him stir inside me, and I decide he could use a walk in the woods.
Bears aren’t much for running or spending energy when they don’t have to. Our shifters are usually really big and solidly built. I lost a lot of weight when I was being held captive, but in the time since, I’ve put on a lot of weight. It feels good to have the extra layers of thick muscle and even a little extra around my mid-section. We’re pretty hairy, too, and I definitely meet that type. My long beard and chest hair help keep me warm when it's cold out. So even though it’s snowing, I don’t need much coverage.
I’ve got on a long-sleeved, cream-colored thermal shirt and jeans. I go over to the door, pull on my boots, and then go about unlocking the door. I walk outside and turn, locking the cabin back up.
The woods are quiet, and my bear is enjoying the peace. He likes being outside, but a lot of times my fear overrides his need and we stay indoors. This is good for both of us, at least for a little while.
I walk for a few miles and come through the clearing next to the lake. I don’t usually venture to this side of the protected lands, but I just need a change today. New scenery. Something inside me is telling me this will be best for me and my bear. That we need a new direction and something different to see today.
Looking off in the distance, I see a dark figure on the ground. My bear is instantly alert, and I widen my stance, preparing for danger. I raise my nose, trying to catch a scent, but the wind is at my back. Slowly and silently, I walk around the edge of the lake, looking for danger from every direction.
My bear is pacing, trying to get out, but I want to be able to hold my skin. I’m always terrified that someone will try to take me again after getting captured the last time, so I’m being extra cautious.
I don’t know what possesses me to even want to investigate the dark figure. Normally, I would just turn and run. But something’s pulling me in that direction, and I need to see what it is.
As I step closer, I see the dark figure take shape. The scent still hasn’t come my way, but I can make out that it’s a person lying in the snow. My steps are tentative and slow, and I move closer and closer.
When I realize it’s a woman, my heart starts to beat faster and my steps quicken. What if she’s a shifter in trouble? I don’t know everyone in the pack yet, so this could be a member in distress.
Moving close, I see that her eyes are closed and she’s lying on her back with her arms outstretched. She must not have been here long because not much snow has fallen on her. It’s starting to come down heavier now, and she’s getting a small dusting on her face and body.
She’s got thick black hair and skin the color of cream. Her lips are blood red, and something inside of me is pulling me towards her. I can’t explain the force that makes me go to her, but something inside me knows that I must help her.
Something inside me needs to kiss her. Taste her… Brand her.
I kneel down beside her, and the sound wakes her. Her big eyes pop open, and the blue there strikes me right in the chest. Her eyes are the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen. I want to get lost in them and let them carry me away. There’s something about them that’s familiar and safe, but also terrifying and confusing.
A heartbeat passes between us, and for a second I’m pulled back in time to a place I thought I’d left. Fear grips me, but then the woman smiles up at me, and all of that melts away.
“Hi,” she whispers, and I light up at the word. I start to say something back, but at that moment her scent hits me, and I my throat nearly closes up.
Rage pulses through me, and I start to stand. I want to get away from this human as fast as I can, but suddenly I’m dizzy with need. I inhale again, and I feel my bear trying to take over. He’s clawing inside me to get out to roar, but I hold him tight, trying to catch my brain up to my body.
Mate, my bear growls over and over, and I realize that this human is my mate. A human. The one thing in this world that I not only fear but never want to be near again is my mate.
I growl long and low, but the human doesn’t look surprised. She sits up and pushes back from me, but I reach out, snatching her ankle before she can get away.
“Mine,” I say through gritted teeth. I didn’t want this, not like this. But my body has no choice.
“Let me go.” I look into her eyes to see panic there. “Don’t, please. My brothers will worry. I know what you are, please don’t do this.”
The plea for her family pulls at my heart. How many times had I begged to be let free to find my family? How many times had I begged for news of my sister? I feel sadness for her, but then it’s followed by anger. Her kind are the ones that kept me from Winnie. This human is my mate. I have every right to take her from her human people.
“You’re mine now,” I say, pulling her off the ground and throwing her over my shoulder.
“Please let me go. I swear I won’t come back. I’ll never tell anyone.”
As the snow comes down heavier and heavier, I carry her back to my cabin. Our tracks are covered and no one will be able to find us. I’m taking my mate home, and she will get used to it.
“You can’t do this. You can’t take me.” There is so much panic in her voice that I nearly stop and go back, not wanting to upset her.
“I will treat you kindly and no harm will ever come to you as long as I live.” I take a breath and keep walking. “It’s more than your kind ever gave me.”
Alexa Riley is two sassy friends who got together and wrote some dirty books. They are both married moms of two who love football, donuts, and obsessed book heroes.
They specialize in insta-love, over-the-top, sweet, and cheesy love stories that don’t take all year to read. If you want something SAFE, short, and always with a happily ever after, then Alexa Riley is for you!
Lost Kings MC Boxed Set, Includes Books 1-3, plus bonus material.
SLOW BURN (Lost Kings MC, Book #1)
Forced to represent an outlaw biker, a married attorney must come to terms with her feelings for her client while avoiding the danger he brings into her sedate life.
CORRUPTING CINDERELLA (Lost Kings MC, Book #2)
Love is the ultimate outlaw.
How do a lawyer and a badass biker with a heart of gold keep their love alive while their opposing worlds collide?
STRENGTH FROM LOYALTY (Lost Kings MC, Book #3)
As a dark cloud descends over Hope and Rock’s already precarious future, will a long-hidden secret push them both past the point of no return?
Bonus Scene #1
Bonus Scene #2
PLUS, character interviews, and other exclusive-to-this-boxed-set material.
I’m halfway to my car when Murphy’s voice stops me. “Hope! Wait up.”
“What’s up?” I ask when he reaches me.
“Nothing. Wanted to walk you to your car.”
My silence tells him I’m not buying it.
He opens my car door for me, and I toss my purse on the passenger seat but don’t get in. “What’s on your mind, Murphy?”
“Thanks for doing that for her today. Teller better have thanked you.”
“He did. Is that really why you raced down here?”
His grin falters. “It’s just…her mom’s never been around and her grandmother hated doing that kind of stuff for Heidi. Teller and I used to try…but it’s not the same.”
Damn. I’m going to cry if he keeps this up.
“I was happy to do it. We had fun.”
“Funny thing is, I know you mean that, Hope.” He chuckles when I frown. “I know you ain’t doin’ it to impress Rock. You got our prez so whipped he can barely see straight.”
“And you got no reason to wanna be in Teller’s good graces. Hell, you probably wanna smack the shit out of him.”
“I’m glad she has you now.”
Autumn prefers to write her romances on the classy side of dirty, and she's a sucker for a filthy-talking, demanding alpha male hero. The bigger the better. She believes true love stories never end.
Some of Autumn's favorite hobbies include reading, writing, acting, music and horror movies. When she's home, her faithful Pug is always by her side. She's an active member of her local chapter of Romance Writers of America.
Autumn was born and raised in upstate New York. She still enjoys all four seasons there with her very own alpha hero and their three rescue dogs.
You can find Autumn on Facebook and she always loves to hear from readers at:
Publication date: May 26th 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Suspense
Will one mistake destroy her life? Will one secret? One lie?
Kinsley Felton thought she had found a solution to her problems. She thought she had convinced her family that she is strong enough to run the company, if not on her own, then with help. She thought she had won when she decided not to marry Killian and instead just date him. But everything she thought was wrong.
Killian isn’t who she thought he was. Now she is sitting in a jail cell for something she didn’t do because of him. But maybe she deserves to sit in jail anyway to pay for her past mistakes. All she knows is she needs to stay far away from Killian no matter how much her heart aches for him.
Will Kinsley let herself get lost in the deceit or will she save herself and take another chance at love?
Grab your copy today for only 99 cents!
Kinsley bites her lip. “I used to hate you but now I realize who I should be hating.”I stick my hands in my pocket to keep me from doing something stupid. “And now?”
“Now I sorta love you.”
I grin and do something stupid – despite trying as hard as I can to keep my hands firmly in my pockets, they fly out and grab Kinsley. One hand tangles in her newly cut hair that is still wet from being out in the rain too long. The other wraps around her waist where I can see her skin through the see-through portion of her dress in the middle, but I can’t touch her skin. And my lips touch her soft lips while my tongue tangles with hers in a desperate kiss.
A kiss that I was afraid I would never get again. I thought she would still hate me. I thought she wouldn’t believe me, but somehow she did. Now I just have to protect her from the truth I just discovered. A truth that is a million times more hideous then what either of us knew to be true.
But before I figure out how to protect her I have to have her. I can’t stand that I left her when she wasn’t safe. I can’t stand that I left her feeling like I didn’t love her. I can’t stand that I hurt her and I can’t stand that my cock isn’t already buried inside her within a minute of seeing her because I need to feel close to her. I need to forget what I just learned. I need to forget that if I choose to be with her past tonight I’m jeopardizing a career that I’ve worked my ass off for over ten years.
“Excuse me ma’am. Would you like another glass of the Bordeaux you were drinking?” the cocktail waitress asks Kinsley.
Kinsley reluctantly pulls her lips away from me. “No thanks.”
I smile seeing that Kinsley ordered the first drink I ever got her.
“No. I’m good.”
Kinsley grabs her glass of wine behind her and finishes the last sip off before handing the empty glass to the waitress. “Thank you,” she says her eyes trained on my lips.
Before the waitress even leaves, her soft plump lips are on mine, torturing me, knowing that I can kiss, but I can’t get what I want right now no matter how hard I get for her. I press my cock against her stomach to show her how much I need her. Her eyes open and are filled with her own need. She needs me. Now.
I pull away so my lips are just resting on her. “Fuck, that look is the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen.”
She grins. “You haven’t seen sexy yet.”
She grabs my hand and then we are walking instead of kissing. I let her lead me a few feet when I tug hard on her hand until she is spinning back toward me. I grab hold of her neck and kiss her again. She gives into the kiss as I sweep my tongue into her mouth. She moans just a little and then pushes me away laughing.
“You have to stop that if you want more than just a kiss.”
“What?” my eyes widen at her words.
She leans forward until her mouth is at my neck. “If you want to fuck me, you have to stop kissing me so I can take you somewhere that is not swarming with people.” And then she sucks my neck before pulling away. I’ve taught her well.
She grabs my hand again and then she’s leading me off the casino floor. I frown though when she doesn’t lead me to the lobby to get a room. “Where are we going? Shouldn’t we head to the lobby to get a room?”
She bites her lip as she flashes me a wicked grin. “I can’t wait that long. Can you?” she cocks her head to the side and I realize I was wrong. This is the sexiest thing I’ve ever seen.
She pulls on my hand again and we are walking faster down a long hallway and then another. I have no idea how she knows where she is going, but she does. She slows when she gets to the end of a hallway and then is pushing me into a bathroom.
I grin. “You naughty girl.”
Her tongue slips inside my mouth as her arms go around my neck hungrily. It’s the most desperate kiss I’ve ever felt from her and I match her hunger kiss for kiss.
“God, I want you.”
“Then take me.”
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