Harm Germaine is an alpha in training who embraces his ability to be man or dog. Meeting his mate, who happens to be human, gives him second thoughts about what he is, and finding a way to tell her causes the always-in-control alpha to lose control.
Elle Naylor's caught his scent, can't get it or Harm out of her mind. Strong and stubborn, Elle knows she's found the one man who can make her life complete.
A stray shepherd, a series of accidental mishaps, and Harm becomes sure of one thing: Elle loves dogs! But will she love him when she finds out that's exactly what he is?
Shepherd's Watch 4: Controlled
J. Hali Steele
All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2012 J. Hali Steele
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Hell wouldn't have seemed like a bad proposition to the asshole lying in the stagnant, garbage-strewn water had he known he was dealing with monsters.
"Oh, God, please!" Boots scraped asphalt in the alley as the jerk tried to scoot away.
"Aww, hell no." Looming over six feet tall, Court grabbed the miscreant's shirt collar and shoved his face into the slimy puddle beside the dumpster. Straddling the bloodied man, he asked, "You did not just take the Lord's name in vain?"
"Let him go, man." Not only was Harm late checking in with a very important client, he was tired, hungry and cold. Changing, covering his body in fur, would solve the latter, but it was too late. Why did they have to run into this son-of-a-bitch manhandling his girlfriend? The woman silently huddled in the dimly lit corner of their apartment building. A few minutes earlier, a few later, this sordid situation would have gone unnoticed. "He's a coward. I don't think he'll come back around here." Harm strode over, took hold of the man and snatched him to his feet. "Am I right?"
"You can have the bitch, please, just let me go."
"Jackass, you said one word too many." Harm drew back and cold-cocked the bastard. Lifting him high, he told Court, "Open the dumpster. He can go out with tomorrow's trash." The unconscious body bumped loudly on the bottom where he'd be found in the morning by sanitation workers.
"Hey, stop, don't put him in there!"
Turning in unison, the brothers gaped. Court spoke up. "Lady, your boyfriend was getting ready to seriously kick your ass."
Belongings from her purse lay scattered on the pavement. Watching her stoop down to collect them, Harm's head tilted quizzically. "Are you kidding?" She couldn't possibly be upset at how they handled the creep.
"First off, he's not my boyfriend. The dirty rotten sucker stole my wallet with my credit cards and money. It's in his back pocket." Straightening, she glared angrily in the direction of the trash container. "You arrived in time to prevent anything else."
"Glad we could help." Harm twisted toward Court. "Get the wallet."
"You think I'm climbing into that stink hole?" Court's hands dusted his still immaculate jacket, brushed at his pants and pinched the razor-sharp crease. "Brother, you've lost your goddamn mind."
"Jesus Christ, get the wallet."
"I'm not getting in there, Harm. No way."
"Oh hell, both of you shut the fuck up." Short legs ate up the distance from the wall to the dumpster. "And you're both blasphemous idiots. Talk about taking the Lord's name in vain. I'll get it myself."
Before Harm could move, she'd grabbed the container's lip and hiked a luscious, petite body over the edge. His jaw dropped and he glared at Court. "She just jumped in the trash."
"Good, because I wasn't going in there."
They spun toward the dumpster when they heard a loud smack. "Take my fucking wallet." Another crack. "Teach your sorry ass some manners."
Court chuckled. "Damn, she's vicious. He's lucky we came along."
Harm stood rooted to the spot in disbelief. He liked this spitfire. His shepherd was on the prowl, pawing and panting. He liked her too! Sniffing loudly, he picked her scent from the stench wafting through the air. Sweet. Thinking about getting to know her better caused his cock to swell and jerk in his pants. Slender fingers appeared on the edge and Harm took hold to help hoist the woman over the side. Feet had barely touched the ground before she pulled one hand free and pushed a wave of dark hair back. Lifting Harm's other hand to her nose, she sniffed loudly. Fuck. Something a dog would do and the action yanked his cock to attention.
"His balls will hurt for a week." Hearty male laughter bounced from the walls of the alley, putting a smug smile on her pretty face. "I was ready to kick his nuts to hell and back when you turned the corner." Purse in hand, she walked away and glanced over her shoulder. It was as if Court didn't exist when her eyes nailed Harm to the spot he stood in. "It's good to know chivalry's not dead." She disappeared around the corner.
"What the fuck was that?" Court continued to laugh. "I believe she would have taken him out."
Harm wanted to chase after her but his feet wouldn't move. Watching her plump little ass twitch away stirred something raw and natural in his gut, causing his shepherd to react by immobilizing Harm in his path.
"Well I'll be a son-of-a-bitch." Court's head fell back and he roared, laughing until he choked. "Your dog got you by the balls."
"Go to hell." Her scent dissipated and Harm's shepherd released him. Swiping his knees futilely in an attempt to remove a smudge of dirt, he glared at his brother. "Shut up before I bite you in the nuts." Looking back toward the main street, he sniffed the air again. "Very, very sweet."
Facing Court, he pleaded, "Follow her for me."