Hunter (Fairy Tale Bad Boys #1)

BOOK: Hunter (Fairy Tale Bad Boys #1)
11.5Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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HUNTER

Erin Bedford

 

Hunter
© 2016 Erin Bedford

 

All rights reserved under the International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.

This is a work of fiction. Names, places, characters and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to any actual persons, living or dead, organizations, events or locales is entirely coincidental.

Warning: the unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal. Criminal copyright infringement, including infringement without monetary gain, is investigated by the FBI and is punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

 

About the Book

She found her happy ending, or did she?

 

Isabel

It was like a fairy tale. A handsome misunderstood prince with more money than he knew what to do with and he wanted her. A plain bookworm with a penchant for numbers. She should be happy, right? Then why couldn’t she get that cocky grin out of her head and her heart?

 

Jason

He made a mistake. We all make them. But this one cost him the only woman he ever loved. Now she’s with him. A monster hiding behind a pretty face and fancy words. He won’t let him have her even if it means becoming a beast himself.

Chapter 1

Jason

It’s the quiet ones you have to watch out for. The mousey kind of women with their nose buried in a book, day in day out, not paying any mind to the real world. The ones waiting for Prince Charming to sweep them off their feet. But in Jason’s experience, those were the women who were the most fun.

The girls who would call him up in the middle of the night for a quick fuck in the backseat of his car. The ones who want him to choke them out while he was balls deep inside of them. Kinky shit like that.

Isabel was that kind of girl.

It was one of the many reasons his eyes tracked her slender form as she made her way down the aisles. Her brown hair pulled up high in a ponytail so that with each step it bounced just above the shelves. Jason’s hands gripped the counter in front of him as he fought to restrain himself.

Patience, man. Patience. You don’t want to scare her away.

Like with any good quarry you had to know when to watch and wait. Some of the best catches were the ones who came to you. Then when they were right where you wanted them, that was when you went in for the kill.

A wicked smile curled up onto his face as he watched the ponytail lose its peppy bounce and became more of an aggravated jolt. His breath caught as the ponytail paused in the middle of the rifle cleaning supplies. After a moment, a frustrated growl came from the aisle, and it was like music to his ears.

He leaned forward on his elbows, anticipation curling in his stomach. He could just picture the anger that would fill Isabel’s chestnut eyes when she realized he was working the counter. The scowl that would cover her face caused him to harden at the thought.

All those images did nothing to prepare him for the electricity that shot down his spine when those eyes finally landed on him. Her brows scrunched down and her eyes narrowed as she stomped up to the counter.

God, she was beautiful.

As she stopped in front of him, he put on his biggest megawatt smile that would have the girls back at the bar creaming their panties. But not Isabel. She took one look at his smile and scowled harder.

“Hello, ma’am. What can I help you find today?” It was a rhetorical question. He knew exactly what she was there for thanks to the call from Earl down at the hardware store, telling him she was coming his way. Not that she knew that.

It was one of the benefits of living in a small town. Everyone knew everyone and their business. That meant they all knew about his and Isabel’s falling out. It would have bugged him more if most of the town wasn’t on his side. Which was why she was standing in front of him now looking for mouse traps at his outdoor and sporting goods store rather than Earl’s, who had conveniently ran out just as Isabel came in.

“Where’s Peter? I thought he was working the Saturday shift?”

Ah, so she had checked to be sure he wasn’t going to be there.

Peter usually did work the weekend shift, leaving him as the owner, to be off on the weekends. Not that he had much going on without Isabel waiting for him. It was lucky for him that he’d stopped by the store to grab his phone, or he’d have missed Earl’s call and the delicious opportunity before him.

“He’s on a break.”

She pursed her lips at his response, and then growled out, “I need mouse traps.” Her nose scrunched up causing the cute freckles on her face to stand out more.

“Mouse traps you say?” He stroked the strong line of his jaw, pretending to think about her request.

“Come on, Jason. Don’t fuck with me.” She stomped her sensible black flats, the effort wasted on the wood floors, barely making a sound. “I know you have them. Earl’s out until their truck comes in next week.”

“Then wait until next week.” Jason purposely dragged out the conversation just to hear her curse again. The only other time he could get a less than perfectly articulated response from her was when he was pounding deep inside her. Then she was all dirty talk and curses that were creative enough to make a sailor blush.

“I can’t or I wouldn’t be standing here right now.” She placed her hand on her hips. “They’ve already eaten five of my spreadsheets. I had to start all over again, putting me way behind schedule. Now Earl said you were the only other place in town that would have them. So I suggest you stop trying to vex me and hand them over.”

“Now hold on a moment, Izzy. Just because I stock hunting traps doesn’t mean that I have traps for everyday occurrences like a little bitty mouse.” He pinched his fingers together, a smirk covering his face.

“Don’t call me that!” She placed her hands on the counter, and his eyes were drawn down to her chest that was pressed against the edge of the counter, giving him a wonderful view of her cleavage. “Jason. Are you listening to me?” She snapped her fingers in front of his face, ripping his gaze from the delectable sight of her chest.

“Yes. Mousetraps.” He pointed a beefy finger toward the back of the store. “Back wall, top shelf.”

She glanced over her shoulder to where he had pointed. Muttering thanks, she marched back down the aisle.

His eyes followed her curvy behind as her petite form thundered toward where he had moved the mouse traps just moments before. Jason inched around the counter and sauntered down after her. A smile filled his face as he watched her stand on her tiptoes trying to get to the packages just out of her reach.

“Need a hand?”

His voice was right beside her ear, causing her to jump in place. She spun around and glared at him, her hands on her hips once more.

She was so hot when she was mad. He wanted to take her in his arms and cover her smart mouth with his. From the way her breath caught in her throat at his presence, he wasn’t a hundred percent sure she would tell him no.

“Here.” He reached over her being sure to press close as he pulled down a few traps. “Should I put them on your tab?”

Isabel took the traps from his hands, their fingers brushing causing a zing to go through him. From the widening of her eyes, he knew she felt it too.

“Yeah, thanks.” She tried to push passed him and beeline it for the door, but he caught her arm.

“Wait.”

Isabel looked down at the hand holding onto her and then up at him.

“What is it? I really need to get going. I have a ton of errands to run before Vincent gets home.”

The sound of the monster’s name caused him to drop her arm like it was on fire.

Vampires, fairies, even werewolves were common occurrences in big cities. There were even a few senators who were part of the undead. An effort to bring equality to the supernaturals of the world. But, in Rollings, Minnesota where the population didn’t go higher than five thousand, the sups were a lot harder to come by. The ones they did have were well known, and Vincent was one of the most notorious of them all.

Vincent was a werewolf who owned the only gambling hall in Rollings. If being a sup wasn’t bad enough, he lived in the gaudiest mansion just outside of town and was the son of the alpha who ran all the Minnesota werewolf packs. Making him some kind of royalty to the other supernaturals.

But not to Jason. The only thing he cared about was that the wolf was Isabel’s boss, boyfriend, and the only thing standing between them getting back together.

“Right, Vincent,” he drawled out trying to hide his irritation. “How is the mutt doing?”

“He’s fine,” Isabel quickly replied, then pulled her arm from his grasp, stepping back from him. “Look, I really have to go.”

With that she hurried out the store door, causing Jason to frown at her retreating form. She hadn’t even acknowledged his insult on the mutt. It was not like her at all.

Throwing his work apron on the counter, he called out to the back room, “I’m heading out for a few, cover the front.”

“You got it, boss.” Peter, his teenage part-timer came back to the front, instantly taking his phone out of his pocket and typing a mile a minute.

Shaking his head at the kids of this generation, Jason stepped out of his shop and onto the bustling crowd of Rollings citizens running their Saturday errands. At 6’ 2” it wasn’t hard for him to see over the crowd, but with Isabel barely reaching his chest, it was like finding a virgin in a Mardi Gras parade.

Eventually, his attention was drawn to the bell of what he knew was Isabel’s favorite store in three counties. Spines and Dust. The only new and used bookstore in all of Rollings. Why she liked to buy her books in person rather than online was beyond him, but in that moment he was thankful for her little quirk. He took off toward the store just as a bouncy ponytail disappeared inside.

Chapter 2

Isabel

Even with her back to the door, she knew the moment Jason stepped into the store. He had the kind of presence that was hard to ignore and boy did he know it.

Built like a linebacker with his black hair and dark penetrating eyes, he was the very definition of tall, dark, and handsome. Not a woman, man, or child in Rollings was left unaffected when he went by. Isabel was no different, she was just better at hiding it.

Most of the time.

Trying her best to ignore the eyes boring into her back, Isabel shoved another book into her basket. She loved this store. It had all the newest works by her favorite authors as well as the older ones. The ones that were aged to perfection, giving them each their own unique smell and character. She was one of the few patrons of Spines and Dust who actually appreciated the combination.

Jason sure as hell wouldn’t be caught dead in there if she didn’t drag him kicking and screaming the whole way. Which brought up the question of why he was there? The only reason she could think of for him being there was her.

Fuck me.

Eyes down, she pretended to focus on the back of her book, and that she didn’t notice his shadow looming over her. If she didn’t acknowledge him would he go away? The sound of his throat clearing said the chances of that happening were slim to none.

“What do you want now?” She retorted not looking up from her book.

“Now don’t get your panties in a twist, Izzy. I just want to talk.” The sound of his voice was deep and husky. It always made her think of naughty bedroom things. She shook her head at the thought. She was with Vincent now. He was kind and generous. So what if the sound of Jason’s voice made her weak in the knees. He was a boorish pig. Didn’t he prove that when they broke up?

“I told you to stop calling me that.” Closing the book in her hand with a snap, she placed it in her basket before heading further into the store.

Saturday morning was the best time to browse at her leisure. Most of the younger crowd wasn’t awake yet, and the adults were too busy trying to get their errands for the week done. Leaving the store practically deserted. Normally, she would crave the solitude but with Jason on her tail, it only made the air thick with tension.

“What would you have me call you?” Jason asked, his long legs keeping up with her attempts to lose him. “Belle?”

“No. Not that.” She winced at his use of Vincent’s nickname for her. Vincent was a wonderful boyfriend and an even better listener. The moment he had heard her name he insisted on calling her Belle because she was more beautiful than any rose he had ever seen. His words not hers. But the sound of it coming from Jason’s mouth seemed wrong in more ways than one. The most glaring reason being the real reason she was sure he was there.

“What about sugar?” This time, his voice was low and hot in her ear. The only time he ever called her a pet name was when he was on the verge of coming. His use of it then in broad daylight caused her body to react the way it was conditioned to. Her face flushed and a throbbing ache made her press her thighs together.

“Isabel.” Her voice came out hoarse and a bit breathless. Stop it. He’s not that hot. She chided herself for acting like a cat in heat. She cleared her throat and took a step back from him. “Just Isabel.”

“All right, Isabel. Whatever you say.” A knowing smirk crept up his face as he took a step closer to her, causing her to back up until the shelf bumped her back. Caged in by his massive arms, she focused on pinning him with a glare and not the rampant beating of her heart.

“Seriously. No more games, Jason. What do you want?” The words were meant to cool his heated gaze but had the opposite effect when his hand came up to brush a stray hair behind her ear.

“I just wanted to see how you were doing. You seemed kind of tense back at the shop.” His dark eyes drilled into her daring her to deny it.

“Like I told you before, I have a lot of errands to run, and then I have to redo all those spreadsheets for this month’s ledgers, and all before Vincent gets back from visiting the pack tomorrow.” She brought up Vincent’s name in an effort to remind herself who she had promised herself to. Not that it was helping any.

“He’s been going to visit his family a lot lately, hasn’t he?” Jason trailed a finger down her arm, causing goose bumps to rise in its wake. “Is that why you are here, buying dirty books, instead of working on those spreadsheets you are so worried about?”

Her face filled with warmth at his question. She had hoped he hadn’t noticed what was in her basket. Though, it was hard not to when every single one of them had a shirtless man or a woman in mid-orgasm on the front.

“Tell me, Iz.” He leaned in closer until their noses almost brushed. “Is the mutt taking care of you like you need to be? Does he know when you get stressed all you need is to come a few times and you are right as rain? Like the one time I pulled over on the highway, do you remember that, baby?” His fingertips tickled the tops of her thighs and she fought her body’s need to arch into his touch.

Isabel gulped. She remembered all right. She had been ranting and raving about her current client at the time, an eco-crazed hippy that didn’t know that to be a successful accountant she needed receipts. A purchase for a hundred dollars or so at some place over in Saint Paul for something he didn’t quite remember was not tax deductible. So after they had been going down the highway for a good fifteen minutes of her harping, Jason had pulled over and hopped out without a word.

“What are you doing?” She’d asked when he had opened her side of the door, only to cry out in surprise when he flipped her around, threw her skirt up and buried his face between her thighs. She had never orgasmed so hard in her life.

“No. I don’t. And Vincent does just fine,” she forced out, pushing her basket between them so Jason would have to take a step back.

“I don’t believe you.” Laughter filled his voice at her attempt to push him away.

“Well, it’s a good thing I don’t care what you think.” She sniffed. “Now if you would excuse me.” Isabel shoved her basket further between them and marched back toward the front.

“Well, now that’s a good thing.” Jason clucked his tongue as he followed her. “Because I know you and you only read that trash when you are frustrated. So it can only mean that dear old Vincent isn’t hitting all your buttons.”

Damn him. Anger filled her at his words, mainly because he was right. Not that she’d tell him, but Vincent and she hadn’t done more than kiss yet.

After she went to work for Vincent as a way to pay back her father’s gambling debt, she found herself falling for the quiet and reserved werewolf. It wasn’t an epic passionate love like in her books but it was comfortable. Unfortunately, after their one romantic moment where they declared their love for each other, Vincent had kept his distance.

The charming werewolf she had become endeared to was becoming little more than a stranger every day. Besides the daily peck on the lips when he left or came home from work, her sex life was pretty much nonexistent. After being with Jason, it was hard to go from mind shattering orgasms almost every night to nothing. It was enough to make any sane woman turn to erotica.

“Whether he is pushing my buttons or not is none of your business.” Isabel spun on him, pointing a finger at his large muscular chest. “You cannot come in here and start acting like you have a say in my life, in case you have forgotten, you are not my boyfriend anymore. Vincent is. Now if you are quite finished harassing me, I have other errands to attend to.”

She turned on her heel, her basket clutched tight against her side causing it to bite into her arm. When she reached the end of the aisle, she almost breathed a sigh of relief at his lack of response. She was about to step out of the aisle when she heard a half audible response.

“What?” She turned to look at him and regretted it the moment she saw the dark look in his eyes.

“Fiancé.” His size thirteen boots stomped down the aisle. “The mutt may be your boyfriend, but do not try and compare what we had to something as fleeting as that. Don’t forget nine months ago you were singing a very different tune.”

“And whose fault is that?” Isabel hissed trying to keep her voice low, even though she knew Mr. Goodman, the sixty-year-old owner of Spines and Dust, was listening to every word.

Jason barked out laughing. “You can’t tell me that brute makes you happy?”

“Brute? That’s a bit funny coming from the likes of you.” She crossed her arms over her chest. “At least Vincent respects me and my intelligence.”

“Oh, we are going to bring that up again.” He threw his hands up, exasperation clear on his face.

“Yes, we are. You seem to forget the very reason we broke up to begin with.” She actually hated bringing it back up. The thought of the last time they had been together and the argument they had always caused a small sting in her heart. Nine months later, he was still constantly apologizing and scheming to get her back. She was through playing nice.

“I’m not going to apologize anymore.” He crossed his bulging arms over his chest. She remembered a time when she loved to be wrapped up in those arms, but that was before.

“Good, because I’m tired of hearing it.” She stepped closer to him, her eyes challenging him.

“Fine.” He leaned down until he loomed over her. “I hope your books and batteries keep you warm at night, because you and I both know Vincent sure as hell won’t.”

He pushed passed her, his path directed toward the exit. Her eyes followed after him and before she could stop herself, her eyes began to linger on the way his jeans fit his backside. Irritated that he still had such an effect on her, she yelled after him.

“They will!” Before snapping her mouth shut at what she had just agreed to.

Glaring at the smirk he tossed back at her, she marched up to the front counter where Mr. Goodman was failing miserably at pretending not to eavesdrop. She began unpacking her books and didn’t turn from the counter until she heard the bell of the door sound his exit. Letting out an aggravated breath, she muttered under her breath about the bullheadedness of some men.

“Well, that didn’t go very well, did it?” Mr. Goodman commented as he rung up her order.

Frowning at the older man’s pity filled eyes, she murmured, “No, it really didn’t.”

BOOK: Hunter (Fairy Tale Bad Boys #1)
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