Author Charlie Richards

Giving love and imagination free reign


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A Wolf in Hiding

Wolves of Stone Ridge: Book Fifty-Two

Out of the Cage: After falling off a cliff and becoming seriously injured, a man’s world is turned upside down.

Elroy Greer has been having a really bad month. A co-worker blames him for mistakes he didn’t make. His car is broken into. He lost most of his friends to his ex in the break-up. Then his hiking buddy bales at the last second, leaving Elroy alone at a trailhead. He decides some time in nature to get away from it all is still an excellent idea and heads out on his own. True to his bad luck, Elroy gets caught in a spring flash storm, loses his way, and tumbles off a cliff. He expects to die out there, but he doesn’t. Elroy wakes up in a log cabin with a man who’s already supposed to be dead—Rueben Calhoun. Except, Rueben is calling himself Dermot Reever. As Dermot begins explaining about wolf shifters and mates and that they are destined to be together, Elroy can hardly believe it’s real. He’s sure he’ll wake up and find it’s all been a pain-medicine-induc ed dream. If it’s not a dream, could Elroy really take the chance that his bad luck won’t ruin everything and have enough faith to begin a relationship with a wolf shifter in hiding?

Excerpt - A Wolf in Hiding

The excerpt below contain explicit adult language and sexual content.

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    Over the course of the next thirty minutes, Dermot followed Lark’s precise instructions.

    Just as Dermot was finishing up with the bandage to his human’s hand and wrist—he’d even managed to put a few stitches in him—his sensitive hearing caught the whine of an approaching engine.

    “You here?”

    “Yes,” Lark confirmed. “Open your door.”

    Dermot rushed from the room to obey. He threw open the front door and watched as a large SUV skidded to a stop. His alpha shoved from the driver’s side and jumped out.

    “Come help,” Alpha Declan ordered, turning toward the back, which was already opening.

    Obeying, Dermot jogged to the rear of the vehicle. He spotted a bunch of electronic equipment and a couple of bags. He grabbed the handles of a bag in each hand and headed toward his cabin.

    His alpha followed with a box-like contraption.

    Dermot hurried back to the bedroom and spotted Lark already there. The alpha-mate leaned over his human’s head. He had a pen-light in his hand and was holding his mate’s eyelid open as he shone it into it.

    “What’s his name?” Lark asked in an absent manner while starting to go through some other checks that Dermot didn’t understand.

    “Uhhhhh.”

    Turning to the remnants of his mate’s discarded jeans, Dermot picked them up. While he’d noticed the bulge of the wallet, he hadn’t bothered to look at it. He tugged it from one of the back ones and opened it.

    Finding the human’s driver’s license was easy enough.

    Dermot read, “Elroy Greer.”

    Even just saying the name out loud caused a slither of heat to bloom in Dermot’s gut. The arousal that he’d been beating back while aiding his mate surged anew. His blood flowed south, and his dick plumped behind his sweats…which would hide nothing.

    Considering a shifter’s heightened sense of smell could detect arousal, it really didn’t matter.

    “I’m going to cut off his left jeans, so I can do x-rays and see what I’m working with,” Lark told him as he inspected the bandages Dermot had put on Elroy. He straightened as he turned to face him. “It’s highly likely that this will hurt him. If you can’t control yourself, I’m going to need you to leave.”

    Dermot opened his mouth, then closed it again. Turning, he grabbed a nearby chair and dragged it to the left side of the bed. He plopped onto it, then gently cradled Elroy’s left hand between both of his own.

    Lark took that as his answer and began cutting off the remaining jeans.

    Doing his best to ignore what was going on to his left, Dermot leaned forward. “Hi, Elroy,” he purred into the unconscious man’s ear. “My name’s Dermot Reever. I am so sorry you were injured, but I’m also very happy to have met you.” Moving his right hand to Elroy’s forehead, Dermot skimmed his fingertips along his human’s scalp. “I can’t wait to hold you and care for you as you heal. I’ll take ever-so-good care of you, my mate.”

    “Hold the x-ray machine a little to the left, Declan,” Lark ordered, catching Dermot’s attention.

    Dermot spotted the torn flesh and jut of bone between the flaps on the left side of Elroy’s calf. Grimacing, he sucked in a harsh breath, doing his best to ignore the roll of his stomach. Yanking his gaze away from the grotesque sight, he refocused on his mate’s face.

    “Let me tell you, Elroy,” Dermot murmured, doing his best to once again ignore what Lark and Declan were doing. “I’m real happy you’re sleeping through this. That looks beyond disgusting.” Forcing a soft chuckle, he admitted, “I was in the military for over a decade, and I never could get used to the sight of torn flesh.” He lowered his voice and whispered, “I faked it real good, but I’ll certainly never have the makings for a doctor in one of my upcoming lives.”

    As a shifter—a paranormal being that could live upward of five hundred years—he had to recreate his identity every few decades. That was why he was hiding out in the mountains right then. He needed those humans who knew him to forget who he was, leave the area, or die.

    A low groan rumbled from Elroy.

    Dermot jerked his attention to Elroy’s eyes, seeing movement behind the lids.

    “Easy, now, Elroy,” Dermot rumbled, gently massaging his hand as well as his temple. “You’re safe. You’ll be okay. We’ll take real good for you.”

    As Dermot watched, Elroy’s eyelids fluttered. He held his breath, and his heart pounded in his chest. Anticipation flooded him as he waited to catch his first sight of Elroy’s eyes.

    “Come on, baby,” Dermot encouraged. “Open them eyes. Look at me.”

    Elroy’s eyes were heavily dilated when he finally turned his head and focused on him. Then his beautiful brown eyes widened. “Rueben?” he said on a gasp. “Rueben Calhoun?”

    “Uh…” Dermot struggled with how to respond. “Y-You know me?”

    “You’re dead,” Elroy whispered roughly. “Am I dead, too?”

    “You’re not dead, baby,” Dermot assured.

    Elroy glanced down his body, obviously focusing on his leg. “Oh!” Then his eyes rolled, and he passed back out.

    “Well, that creates a bit of a hiccup,” Declan rumbled, drawing Dermot’s attention. “He recognized you from your old life. You don’t remember this man?”

    Dermot shook his head. “No.” Returning his focus to Elroy, he mused, “So how do you know me, baby?”