Dire (Page 28)

“I still refuse to believe you’d be in Hell, but we could have imagined the wolf thing.”

“Imagined it?” Hunter turned to Mary Anne. “Chet, show them.”

Chet took off his pants.

“Oh no. Please, I’ve seen enough.” I looked away from his junk, but I didn’t need to worry for long. A second later the air buzzed, and he’d transformed into a giant grey wolf.

Mary Anne whimpered.

Hunter moved one hand to her shoulder. “You’ll need to get used to us in our animal form.”

“She needs a drink.” Marni stood up from where she sat on the arm of the couch. “Maybe we all do.”

“A drink?” I asked incredulously. “You want us to accept a drink from you?”

“You’ve been eating our food for a few days already.” Chet had transformed again. Thankfully he’d put his pants back on before talking.

“I need to lie down.” Mary Anne blinked a few times.

I fought against Semi. I needed to get to her.

“You can lie down.” Hunter took her in his arms and laid her down on the couch. “A drink might help your nerves though. Is there something in particular you like?”

Mary Anne shook her head. “I’m not twenty-one.”

The entire room laughed. I smiled. I couldn’t help it. At a time like this, Mary Anne was worried about being underage.

Annoyingly enough Hunter smiled too. “That’s all right. No IDs necessary.”

Mary Anne wasn’t laughing, or smiling. “I want Gage.”

Hunter looked like he’d been wounded. “I don’t think that’s such a good idea.”

“Why not?” I spat out. “You keep saying you want to protect her. Why not give her what she wants too?”

“Because what someone wants may not be what they need.” What, was he a philosopher now too?

“I need him.” Her voice pleaded.

“No.” Hunter shook his head. “It’s better that you two get used to being separated.”

“And tell me, Hunter. Why do we need to get used to that?”

“Because you’re not going to be together.”

“Is that a fact?” I challenged. “And let me guess, she’s going to be with you now? Because she needs you even if she doesn’t want you?”

“She wants me.”

“No, she doesn’t.” He scowled.

“She does. She just isn’t ready to admit it yet.”

“What if I’m not okay with that?” I fought against Semi again. “Are you going to throw me out?”

“Throw you out?” He sneered. “You know what we are. We can’t do that. We either keep you or kill you.”

“And how are you going to decide which to do?” I wasn’t going to act all submissive. That would just make things worse.

“It all depends on her.” He ran a hand through Mary Anne’s hair.

“I want him here. I need him here.” Mary Anne wrapped her arms around herself. I wished it were my arms around her.

“I’ll keep him around for you. Consider it a gift.”

“I just want to go home.” Tears streamed down her face, and I fought against my captor again even though I knew the effort was pointless.

“Let’s all have a drink and talk things out.” Marni headed to the kitchen. “Scotch ok for you guys?”

“Scotch? You guys drink scotch?” When I thought of scotch I thought of rich preppy people, not wolves.

“Is there something surprising about that?” She asked with a completely straight face. I couldn’t get a read on the girl. And was she a wolf too? Or was she another innocent victim who’d been brainwashed to stay with them? Then a scary thought hit me. That would be Mary Anne. Mary Anne would be the brainwashed one who did anything Hunter said.

I shuddered.

Marni patted my shoulder. “Yeah, you need a drink.”

I nodded, not sure what else to do. Dead or alive, in a coma or drugged up, our situation sucked. If there was any chance this was real I had to fight for Mary Anne. I owed it to her to get her home. Maybe this was another test. If I could save Mary Anne, I’d redeem myself. Either way, I’d do it. In the time we’d spent together I’d already realized something. I cared for her. I would protect her with my life if I had too, and I had a sinking feeling that might be exactly what was required.

Chapter Fourteen

Mary Anne

Drinking scotch with wolves. That sounded more like a movie or book title than an actual vignette from my life, but somehow I was sitting on a worn couch with a glass of brown liquid in my hand.

“You are not used to drinking straight liquor, are you?” Hunter sat down on the couch next to me. He left so little space that his thigh touched mine. I gulped down more scotch. I probably shouldn’t have been drinking, but I was too freaked out to care.

“Not exactly. I don’t even usually drink beer.” I’d moved on from a state of shock to mild acceptance. I was probably hallucinating or unconscious, so I decided to go along just enough to make things easier.

Hunter rested an arm behind me on the couch. “What do you prefer to drink? I can get anything you want.”

“Ok. Stop.” I tried to scoot away from him. “Assuming I’m awake and alive, and you guys are actually wolves, why would you be concerned with getting me what I like to drink?”

He leaned in close enough that I could feel his warm breath on my face. “Because I plan to fulfill your every desire.”

New possibility. Was I was about to have my first non-Gage sex dream?

“That won’t be necessary. Her desires are well taken care of,” Gage cut in. So sex dream or not, Gage was still there.

“Oh, so you are an expert on Mary Anne then?” Hunter turned to him. “On what she likes?”

“Yes,” he answered confidently. Despite everything, Gage still had that.

Hunter’s stare didn’t waver. “What does she drink?”

“Uh, girly stuff.”

“Is that true, Mary Anne?” Hunter turned his body so I was effectively pinned against the arm of the couch.

“Sometimes.” Wine was my favorite, but I kept that part to myself.

“Tell the truth, Mary Anne.” How did Hunter know what I was really thinking?

“I like girly drinks, but I also like wine.”

“We’ve got some wine in the cellar.” Marni took a sip of her drink “Want me to get some?”