Sunday, May 17, 2015

Royce The Hunter Series Chapter Two ready to read


Chapter 2
Royce was sitting in his meeting with the department heads two hours later when Jesse opened the doors with a crash. Royce stood immediately and when Daniel came in too, Royce started for the door. Something had happened to their mother.
“Where is she?” he asked them as they headed to the elevator. His heart was pounding in his chest and he hoped to Christ that she was all right. “What happened?”
“She was in the bathroom when I left her. She’s beat up pretty bad. Christ.” Daniel leaned back against the wall as the elevator started down. “I didn’t go and check on her sooner so I didn’t get in there on time.”
Royce nearly dropped to the floor. “Someone…someone beat up Mom? What…she’s gone?”
Daniel straightened up and looked at him. “What are you talking about? I’m talking about that girl from this morning. She was beat up. Though I don’t know why anyone would tangle with her, but he did.”
The girl from… “The York girl? Someone beat her up? What happened?”
The elevator slid open onto the lobby. The place was quiet and the only people who looked out of place were them. The ambulance rolled to a stop in front of the building before he could ask again what had happened. Jesse led them to the back part of the first floor where the security offices were. Royce stepped into the room just as the medics began working on…a man? He looked at his brother.
“I thought you said she was beat up. I’m reasonably sure you know the difference between a male and female.” Royce looked back at the man from this morning as he whimpered on the floor. “Where is she if he looks like this? And where is the person who beat them up?”
Royce thought it a reasonable question. He was confused when Jesse starting laughing and Daniel flushed. Before he could ask again Mike White began howling like someone was trying to murder him.
“Quiet,” Royce snapped. The room did just that. “Now, who did this to you?”
“She did. She’s nothing but a fucking cunt. I didn’t do…you have no idea what it’s like to come to work every day afraid of your employees. She hit me. Hit me with a…she used a club. Yes, a club. I’m suing her for…oh, I’m in so much pain.”
Royce looked at his brother with a raised brow.
“Bathroom. She was bleeding pretty well before I left. I told her to sit still, but she had to throw up.”
Rubbing his fingers over his forehead, Royce went to the bathroom that Jesse had indicated. Royce knocked and waited. When he didn’t get an answer, he knocked harder and announced he was coming in.
The room was empty. He could see where someone, presumably the girl, had rinsed blood from somewhere in one of the sinks, but there was no one in here. He looked under the three stall doors before opening them and still, no girl. He came out of the bathroom and entered the men’s room just in case. No one was there either. He went to speak to Daniel and Jesse.
“She’s gone. Where could she have gone? Do we know if she had someone take her to the hospital?” Royce noticed that the officer that had been with her this morning was trying to move away. “Stop right there.”
“She left,” he said as soon as Royce was in front of him. “She probably went home, but she ain’t here. Poor girl. She won’t go to the hospital, so she’ll either be at her aunt’s by now or her own place, though that ain’t much of a place I’d want to be in if’n I was hurt.”
Royce didn’t know what that meant and was frankly too pissed to care. He took a deep breath and tried for patience. He had very little under normal circumstances and this was proving to push him very close to the end of his tether.
“Can you give me the address to both places? And have my car brought around.” Royce turned to Daniel. “Go with White and make sure he keeps his mouth shut until we can figure this out. Jesse, can you—”
“Her uncle needs to be told. He’ll wanna go with you if’n you go to his house.”
Royce turned to the guard who spoke behind him.
“Her uncle is Jay York. He’s the armament.”
Royce heard his brother move away. He hoped to get the girl’s uncle. Royce pulled out his cell phone as he stepped from the desk. He watched as the medics took a now quiet White out of the building with Daniel right next to him. The phone was answered on the second ring.
“Yes, sir.”
He smiled at the voice at the other end. The unflappable Mrs. Bobbie Noel had been his secretary for nearly as long as he’d been working.
“I need some information on one of the security guards. Address, phone number, if she’s been in trouble before. Her last name is York.”
“Kasey York?”
That shocked him. Both that she knew who the girl was and the tone of her voice.
“What’s happened? Her uncle? Or…oh God, not her mother, is it?”
“No, she’s apparently hurt and I’m trying to get to her to see how badly. I didn’t find out about it until just a few minutes ago.” He was suddenly very tired. “Her uncle works here. Do you know how long she’s worked for me?”
“Ten years.” She rattled off the address. Jesse was coming toward him with an older man who he assumed was the uncle. “Bobbie, I’ll let you know what I find out. Her uncle is coming now.”
His car pulled up out front just as he shook the man’s hand. They were headed out to the car when he realized that he had a meeting in progress. He thought about having one of his brothers go up and fix it, but decided maybe, if he didn’t return, they’d go back to their jobs. Probably not, but who knew?
~~~
Kasey didn’t think she was going to make it home. But when the big, ugly building came into view she nearly wept with joy. She hurt in places she’d only read about and some she didn’t even know a body could hurt in. She made it up the three flights of stairs barely and had to work to get her keys out of her pocket. When she managed to get them free she couldn’t make her fingers wrap around them to get the key into the lock at first
but finally got it to stick. She got the door open and was falling inside before she remembered to take the keys from the lock.
Fuck it, she thought, as she stumbled toward the bed. If someone wanted to murder her, she’d welcome them to. She didn’t even care if they took their time. It wasn’t like they could make her suffer any more. But she turned to take them out anyway. She wasn’t really that stupid.
She cried out when she laid down. She didn’t know what she’d done, but something sharp was poking at her side and she was almost afraid to look. She had just closed her eyes when she heard someone pounding at the door.
“Go away,” she whispered, all that she could manage. “Please.” This time, when she closed her eyes, she knew she was slipping away in a void that she was sure she should be worried about. But by then it was too late.
When she opened her eyes again her uncle was there and he looked worried. She tried to assure him she was fine, but her body refused to cooperate. She closed her eyes again.
The room was bright, which threw her off. There were no windows in her apartment and she knew for a fact that she wasn’t in her room at her uncle’s place. She tried to roll over, but she felt weighed down and heavy. It took her several tries to get her eyes to pry open and then a bit more to make them focus. But it mattered little because she still had no idea where she was.
“Christ, girl, it’s about time. You scared me plum to death.” Her uncle came into her line of sight, but he was out of focus for a few seconds.
“Where?” she croaked. It was the best she could do with the towel stuffed down her throat and the elephant on her chest.
“St. Luke’s. You’ve been here ‘bout four days. Best we can tell, you got the record for being out. You done your family name proud.”
She wanted to smile, but it was just too exhausting. She heard her mom, but couldn’t keep her eyes open long enough to see her.
“Mom?” She heard some shifting then suddenly her mom was there. Tears formed, but she couldn’t tell if they fell or not.
“I’m here, baby. You’re going to be all right now. You rest and get better. Jay and I will be here with you.”
Kasey had a moment to wonder why her mom and uncle where in the bedroom with her, but she fuzzed out again. She was just drifting off when she remembered something, but it was there and gone so quickly she let it go. Besides, it hurt too much to try to chase it.
She knew that she drifted in and out a lot. She also knew that there were changes when she’d been out, that she noticed, but didn’t remark on. There were things she thought she’d imagined, others she knew she had.
Like the man, Mr. Hunter. He’d been in her bedroom too. That was just plain silly. What on earth would he even care…unless he was there to fire her? Maybe, she thought, but couldn’t remember why. Then she opened her eyes one day and knew she was in the hospital.

“Hello, Miss. York. I’m Abby, your nurse. Can I get you anything? If you’re in pain, I can give you something for that as well.”
Kasey tried to move, but it hurt too much so she looked around the room as well as she could just using her eyes and not turning her head. This place changed with every eye opening, she thought, as she took in the sofa and the big television. She looked back at Abby for answers.
“Where…where am I?” She almost dreaded the answer. If she was where she thought she was, she was in big trouble.
“St. Luke’s Hospital on Main. You need anything?”
Yes, answers, she thought, but didn’t ask her. “I need AMA papers now.” She wasn’t sure how she expected to leave against medical advice, but she had to get out of here now.
“I don’t think… You won’t be able to leave, Miss York. You’re still hurt pretty badly.”
Well, no shit, Kasey said to herself. She lifted her arm and blinked several times at the bruises and cuts on her arm. It took a full five seconds to remember what had happened and who had done this. She groaned when she remembered every detail. She looked over at the nurse who was still staring at her.
“Papers. Now. I don’t have any insurance and I certainly can’t afford this being unemployed.” That got her moving. Abby was out the door like a shot.
Kasey was still trying to figure out how to get the bed in an upright position when her door opened again. She turned to ask the nurse how to do it when she saw who was there.
“You were going somewhere, Officer York? I’m reasonably sure you shouldn’t be moving about so much just yet. The doctor said he’d have to restrain you if you tore open your stitches again. He sounded pretty pissy the last time you did it.”
Mr. Hunter looked like he thought the idea of the doctor being pissy was funny. She turned away from him to work at the bed again. She felt it was better to ignore him rather than try to make her tongue work around speaking to him. When the bed moved, she cried out in pain. Maybe she should just try and move on her own.
“Are you all right?” He pressed something and she was moving again. When she cried out a second time he stopped moving the bed. For what seemed like hours but was probably only a few seconds, she heard the door open again. She prayed he’d gone away to get a gun to shoot her and put her out of her misery.
“Miss York needs something for pain. I’m afraid she injured herself trying to roll over.”

The very timid “yes sir” had the door opening sound again.
“I’m going to move your bed to the down position slowly. If you need me to stop, say so.”
“Stop,” she told him before the bed moved. His laughter made her want to cry. He just had to be enjoying this after what she’d done about the badge.
“I’m not mad about the badge, Miss York. In fact, I’m quite impressed. No one had the guts to do what you did and it should have been done…well, years ago. I wasn’t aware that the thing had been installed. Well, that’s not true. I knew it had, but I didn’t think of it past the installation.”
“Stupid.” And she was, too. She wasn’t sure why he was here, but knew it wasn’t good. Then she realized he’d answered her thought. “How did you know?”
“You just said…ah, didn’t know you were speaking out loud. I’d like to claim that I can read minds, but I can’t. I just listen very well. Here you go, the nurse has you something for pain.”
“You’re going to feel something warm, Miss York, then you’ll feel better.” Abby was standing on one side of her bed and the hunky Mr. Hunter on the other. Kasey looked up at him to see if she’d spoken out loud again and felt better when she didn’t see that he’d heard her. The warmth of the medicine poured over her like liquid sex. Mr. Hunter’s laughter made her think she might have spoken out loud again, but she was feeling too good to care.


Stay Tune for Next Week Chapter Three


Books In the series 


THE HUNTERS -





                                I hope you are enjoying this book 


                                                      Kathi S Barton 




Now live 



It was the scent of blood? a lot of it?that caught Vicente's attention as his dragon soared over the snow covered field. And if he didn't do something about it and fast, the poor woman would bleed out. He couldn't let that happen

Abby Curry's strength was gone. She had given up hope that she'd be found by someone that could help her. The blood trail she'd left was easy enough to follow. The three men that hunted her would finish her off if she wasn't dead already before they got there.

Vicente caught her before she could hit the ground?there was something about her?he didn't even know what she looked like she was beaten so badly, but he had to save her if he could....

But when he heard her name, his blood ran cold...it couldn't be her...it couldn't. He'd left her five years before...standing at the altar.... Now what was he going to do?



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Friday, May 15, 2015

Vicente Samuel's Pride book 5 Release Day 5/15/15



It was the scent of blood? a lot of it?that caught Vicente's attention as his dragon soared over the snow covered field. And if he didn't do something about it and fast, the poor woman would bleed out. He couldn't let that happen

Abby Curry's strength was gone. She had given up hope that she'd be found by someone that could help her. The blood trail she'd left was easy enough to follow. The three men that hunted her would finish her off if she wasn't dead already before they got there.

Vicente caught her before she could hit the ground?there was something about her?he didn't even know what she looked like she was beaten so badly, but he had to save her if he could....

But when he heard her name, his blood ran cold...it couldn't be her...it couldn't. He'd left her five years before...standing at the altar.... Now what was he going to do?



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Chapter 1
Abbie Curry moved as far as she could before she simply dropped to her knees. Her strength was gone, and she was going to bleed to death soon anyway if no one came to help her. She was pretty sure that wasn’t going to happen. No one had come so far. Looking at the snow around her knees, she watched as it turned red, then melted around her. If she stayed like this for much longer, she’d be a frozen statue and no one that could actually help her would ever find her for sure.
The men behind her would have no problem finding her at this rate. The trail of blood alone would have led them to her, but the footprints were there as well. The snow and blood were making her trek all too easy to follow. She wanted to call out to them to hurry, but knew that when they found her—and she knew they would—they’d make her get up and run again. Her being their prey was what they wanted. They had found her three times already.
Abbie had been working at her office when she began to feel sick. It wasn’t enough to send her running to the bathroom at first, but the longer she stayed at work, the harder it was not to lay her head on the desk and rest. She’d thrown up several times, and if not for her need to complete her job before going home, she might have been home and safe when they had taken her.
Her body didn’t just hurt, but felt as if she’d been run over twice before they picked her up, shook her out, and ran over her again. Abbie had never been so ill in her life. On her way to her car she must have passed out, because when she woke, she knew a new kind of terror.
There were three of them. Each man had worn a mask to hide who they were, but she’d been able to figure it out quickly enough. Then when she’d called them out, told them to let her go, the beatings began.
Her arm was broken, she knew. Every time she’d tried to move it—or, as had happened just a few minutes ago, tried to keep from falling on her face—she cried out in pain. But the arrows in her back hurt her the most. She had no idea after the first three how many more times they’d hit her, but she knew that it had been a lot.
Abbie heard them then, or at least she thought she did. Usually they made enough noise to wake the dead, but this time they were quiet. Perhaps they’d finally grown tired of their game and were going to kill her.
“I’m not going to hurt you.”
Abbie smiled at the voice behind her, knowing that whatever he did would not be anything she’d feel. Her body was as cold as ice and ready for her to simply lie down and end it all. She wondered just how cold it was. She’d had nothing on but a pair of men’s boxer briefs and a bra for two days now.
“Kill me.” Her voice sounded harsh even to her own ears. She’d been screaming so much she was sure that she’d never be able to talk like a normal person again. “Please, kill me before they find me.”
“I’m not going to kill you, and they won’t be finding you any time soon.” She nodded and cried out in pain. “If you would allow me to, I’ll put you into a deep sleep and remove the arrows from your back.”
“No.” She hadn’t meant to scream at him, but the thought of going to sleep by drugs was too much. “I don’t want you to drug me. If you’re going to finish what they started, then have at it. I’m not going to fight you.”
She thought he said something about giving up, but she didn’t have the strength to tell him she was too hurt and didn’t have the energy to tell him to fuck off. When someone touched her she tried to look around, but it hurt too much. The pain that radiated from it made her sob.
“They’d been…do you know why they’d do this to you? Or better yet, do you know who they are?” She told him no, she didn’t. She had an idea that they’d deny it, and she’d be in deep shit…more than she was now. Powerful men like the ones who held her and the others didn’t fuck around with peons like her.
“They said I was going to be their prey so they could practice with their Christmas presents. Hunting season, they said.” He growled behind her, and she thought of a great big dog. “I was beaten first because they said I was in better shape than they had hoped. They didn’t want me to get away.”
“Fucking bastards.” She started to fall forward, her body simply giving up. She heard the stranger start cursing and thought he could string the words together better than she could…and she’d been told she was a champ. But the snow was coming up fast, and she let it take her.
~~~
Vinnie grabbed her into his arms just before she fell. Her screams tore through him, and he laid her down as gently as he could on her belly, because there was no way he could lay her on her back. He pulled out his cell phone and called the police. As much as he wanted to take her to safety, he knew that picking her up would kill her, and his dragon would only cause her more harm than good. Whoever had done this to her was going to pay.
After explaining where he was and what he’d found twice, he hung up the phone and called for Samuel. While this wasn’t his land, he did oversee most of the area around it. Vinnie told him what he’d found too. He got a great deal more help from him than he had the woman at the station.
Is she going to make it? He told him he didn’t know. What do you mean she was used as target practice? You mean someone shot her? What the fuck for?
Just before she passed out she told me that these bastards had told her she was going to be their prey as practice. They’d apparently gotten bows and arrows for Christmas and wanted to get in some practice before the season opened. She didn’t tell me what season they were waiting for. Oh, and they beat her to shit too. Apparently she was too healthy for them to hunt down. I’m thinking her arm is broken as well as…Samuel, there are nine arrows in her body, five of which are in her back. Three are broken off in her legs, and she has one in her shoulder that looks like it’s gone through. Vinnie thought of the bloodied trail he’d been following. I think she’s been at this for over three hours. And she’s walked at least five miles dressed in nothing but some
men’s underclothing. She doesn’t even have on a decent pair of boots. A pair of tennis shoes, for Christ’s sake. There is nine inches of snow here.
Samuel told him he was on his way. But the police just went by the house, so I’m betting they’ll be there before me. I was going to shift, but I don’t think that’s a good idea right now, do you?
No. The hunters are still out there. I scared them off about thirty minutes ago by roaring at them. They’re going to pay for this. He thought about going to find them now, but he didn’t want to leave the woman unattended. He had no idea where the men were, and he knew if he left her they’d come in behind him and kill her. Samuel, I’m going to find these bastards and kill them all.
I’ll help you. He knew that Samuel was talking to someone else, because Vinnie could feel them. He thought it was Kennedy, Samuel’s mate, but didn’t know. When he spoke again, Vinnie felt a good deal better.
I’ve sent Jimmy and a few of his men to search for them. I’ve also told them not to kill but to capture. I thought you’d want to deal with them on your own. Vinnie thanked him. And so you know, we’re coming across fields and not the roads. We’re making better time that way.
Vinnie looked down at the woman and took off his coat. He felt stupid for not doing it sooner, and laid it as gently as he could over her. When she cried out again, he stepped back but he didn’t leave her. The men were going to pay for this. No one should be treated this way.
When the police arrived, he told them everything he could. He’d left out the conversation with Samuel, as well as how he’d been flying overhead trying to work out a problem at work when he’d smelled the blood. For whatever reason, it had called to him…something humans just wouldn’t understand. When the medical helicopter came into view, he asked the first officer if he could ride with her.
“I don’t know if they’ll have the room. You can ask, but they get kind of territorial about that thing.” Vinnie knew that he’d be in the chopper even if he had to fly it himself. “You know her?”
“I don’t. In fact, I don’t even know what she looks like.” Her face had been battered as well. Vinnie had touched the largest gash on her cheek that he could see and healed it, but he’d done nothing else. Humans were very testy about things like that as well. When they saw that you’d been injured, they wanted you to remain that way until you healed in their time frame. When the cop asked him what he’d been doing out in this weather, Vinnie lied.
“Looking for some property to buy. I’m sort of a health nut too, and thought I’d take a run.” The officer looked at how he was dressed and then at his face. “Yeah, well I didn’t say I was a smart health nut.”
His clothes were a pair of sweatpants and a heavy sweatshirt. His jacket, a lightweight one, was still on the girl. His shoes, while boots, were untied and opened, but he’d pulled them on in a hurry. Vinnie had been dressed just like this when he’d left his house over three hours ago. He was one of the few dragons he knew that could shift and keep his clothing on.
By the time Samuel and Kaleb got to them, the girl was being loaded in the helicopter. Samuel was moving up to him when Vinnie saw the men. He nearly took off after them until Samuel put his hand on his shoulder.
“They’ll be at my house after you take care of the woman. If you leave her now the police are going to want to know why, and I’d just as soon not have to explain to them why this big assed dragon has gone after a few humans to have for dinner.”
Vinnie nodded. “I wouldn’t eat them, just so you know. I plan to hurt them a great deal, but not eat them. I don’t want to be too ill.”
Kaleb laughed and told him to get going.
Vinnie was crawling into the front of the chopper when the woman started screaming, and she continued to scream until someone gave her something for the pain. Vinnie was ready to eat every one of the fuckers in the chopper before she finally settled down.
The staff at the hospital was prepared for her when they finally landed. Seventeen people in coats and hats were on the landing pad when the chopper sat down. Each of them moved toward the back end of it as soon as it was opened, and they had her inside before he could get to the door. One of the crew led him to a room to wait. He was sitting there when Samuel walked down the hall.
“I don’t know anything as yet. They’ve taken her to surgery and said that it would be a while. I was told to go and fill out her paperwork, but I wouldn’t have the first clue as to what to put about her.” Vinnie rubbed his hand over his face and stared down the hall. “They said she would be dead by morning.”
“No, she won’t. I have a feeling that she’s a little more stubborn than that.” Vinnie told him how she’d begged him to kill her. “I’m sure it was the pain talking. When Kennedy was in labor, she told me all kinds of things I’m betting she’s forgotten about. Some of them were down right scary too.”
Somehow Vinnie thought Kennedy remembered everything she’d said. He loved the lioness, but that didn’t make him any less terrified of her. She could be as mean as a dragon when her Irish was up. And her Irish went up higher when she thought an injustice had been committed. She’d been pissed off since she arrived an hour after Samuel had.
The surgery took nearly five hours. The nurse had talked to them twice, since he’d been the one who had been with her when she’d arrived. Then the doctor had sent a message telling them that he’d been able to remove the broken arrows, but the police had taken them. Vinnie knew that it wouldn’t matter to him if they had evidence or not, the hunters were still dead men. The doctor coming toward them had all of them standing up.
“She’s in good shape or we’d be having a different conversation. I still don’t know if she’ll make it or not, but I think she stands a better chance than most.” He asked them to sit. “I’m telling you this because we still have no idea who she is. And as you brought her in, I’m going to assume you’re going to be caring for her for the time being.”
“I will. And any bills she might have as well. I don’t know her, but I do feel responsible for her.” Vinnie tried to ignore the look that Samuel and Kaleb gave him. He knew just what they were thinking but said nothing. “What is her prognosis now?”
“Her left arm is broken in two places, but it should heal well. Her face had to have over two hundreds stitches to put it back together, mostly in her cheeks and inside her mouth. Two of the wounds had to be stitched twice, as they were all the way through to her gums. A gash in her head was closed, though we’re going to keep an eye on it for swelling. Then there was her back.” He took a deep breath as if he was trying to get a grip on his anger. “Why the hell would anyone do that to someone?”
“I don’t know. When I found her she was on her knees and staining the snow around her red. I think she thought she was going to die out there.” The doctor nodded. “I have a friend I’d like to see her. She could use his special kind of magic.”
“A vampire.” Vinnie nodded, knowing the man would understand because he too was a super. A panther, as a matter of fact. “Just let me know when he gets here and I’ll make sure he has no problems. I’d like for her to live as well. She’s been through enough. I don’t suppose he’d be able to come now, would he?” Vinnie told him that Stephen was coming in as soon as it was possible for him to get there. The doctor nodded.
“Was she raped?” Everyone looked at Kennedy. “Did those bastards rape her as well as what else they did to her? I’m hoping you say no. I’d hate to have to hurt them more than once for this.”
“No, she wasn’t raped. She’s still intact from what I can sense.” He looked at Vinnie as he continued. “I don’t know how your kind finds out if someone is their mate or not, but I have to ask. Is she?”
He shook his head. Vinnie had no idea if she was his mate or not. But he did know that he wasn’t going to find out. Dragon mates were more…complicated. He thought that was a good term for it. There was no scent to draw them together, not even a sexual desire like most of his friends had when they were near their mates. It was more of a human reaction at first, simple attraction. Then they’d fall for each other, he supposed. But once they did come together, something as small as a kiss could trigger his dragon to mark her quickly and painfully until she, too, wore the mark of the dragon. His dragon. His mother had been a full-blooded dragon. His father too, he supposed, because of how much magic he’d had. Vinnie had never met his father, but he knew about him and the way he’d treated others. He was happy that the man hadn’t wanted to claim him any more than Vinnie would call him Father. Vinnie had been raised by a single mom and had never seen her date during his childhood. He doubted that she ever did after he’d left home either. And about ten years ago she’d taken it into her head that she didn’t want to live any longer, and that was it. She’d died a few days later of what the doctors had called a broken heart. Vinnie wasn’t sure his mom had had a heart, but never said anything when he’d been told of her death.
She’d never wanted to talk about what they were. Her idea of information was to tell him to go to his father; which, of course, never happened. But there were days when he wished he could find someone to answer questions for him other than the one man he hated more than he did himself on most days.
Like this mate thing. He didn’t have a clue what really was supposed to happen. He’d heard things, like most supernaturals did, but he wasn’t sure what would really happen if he did find a mate. As much as he loved Yve, his dragon faerie, she didn’t have the answers either.
The doctor stood up and started talking, startling him out of his thoughts, and Vinnie hoped he hadn’t missed anything.
“That’s too bad. The girl is going to need someone if she makes it.” The doctor left them a few minutes later and told him again to let him know when his vampire friend got there. Stephen was having a fit because he couldn’t be there now. Vinnie hoped he could make it in time.
Vinnie filled out what he could on the papers that a nurse brought him. He didn’t have any insurance, but he told them he’d pay cash for her stay. He had to fill out her name as Jane Doe, but that didn’t bother him as much as the other empty spaces he had no answer for. Was she married? Was there someone to notify in the event of an emergency? He had no idea, but put his name in that blank as well.
“What will you do now?” He looked at Samuel when he sat next to him. A nurse had just told them that the woman was in recovery and would be there until morning. Vinnie wasn’t really sure what he was supposed to do now.
“Stay, I guess. It’s not like I can do much in the way of construction right now anyway.” It was two weeks before Christmas and he’d gotten all his projects finished early. Not for him but for his staff. And he’d paid them for the three weeks they’d be off. Samuel nodded and stood up.
“If you need me again, you know where I am. The men we were chasing weren’t the ones that hurt her, as you know, so we set them free. Scared the shit out of them, but we didn’t have any reason to hold them.” Vinnie had heard the same thing from Jimmy. The guys they’d found had been on a hunting party, yes, but they’d been using guns and not bows and arrows. Vinnie hoped the woman could tell them more.
“I have Yve looking now too. She said she can do more than we can anyway.” And she wanted to help, more than he’d thought she should for the nameless, faceless woman. He figured that he had pissed her off by saying that to her, but she had huffed at him and flew off. Vinnie had a moment of panic. He needed the faeries more than they needed him.
Reaching out to Yve, he was happy when she answered him so quickly. I am not mad at you, sire. You are eleven kinds of stubborn, but I am not mad.
It’s ten kinds of stubborn, and I just wanted to make sure. She huffed again. I love you; you know that, correct?
And I you. And I was correct in what I said. You are eleven kinds of stubborn. He laughed. I have found nothing more than her clothing in the area she was found. There is the scent of fear on them, from her I would guess, but little of the men who were chasing her. I have taken it upon myself to have some of the others in the area to keep an eye out.

Thank you. She’s hurt very badly. I’m waiting on Stephen to come and help her out a little. The doctor here is a super, and he said to let him know when he arrives so he can make sure he isn’t disturbed. Vinnie looked at his phone to see what time it was. I would have thought he’d be here by now.
He may be in an argument again. Lady Summer and he have been at it. I do believe he provokes her to see if she will rise to the worm. She can be quite vocal when she believes him not to be doing what he should. He told her it was bait, not worm. Is that not the same thing? A worm is bait, is it not? Why someone would not just go into the water and simply catch the fishes is beyond me. But humans can be very strange, can they not?
They can. He saw Clar, Stephen’s mate, coming toward him and he stood up. Clar is here. If you find anything, let me know immediately.
I will, sire. But I would like for you to explain to me why you are doing this for her. She is only human, is she not? He ignored Yve and kissed Clar on the cheek. He could see that she was ready to bust out laughing, but waited until they were walking down the hall from the nurse’s station to ask. The doctor was on his way.
“He’s arguing with Summer again. I swear to you, it’s like they’re married or something. And for an hour after they’re done going at each other like a couple of bullies on a playground, he sulks about her being his boss and how much he despises her.” She laughed again. “He loves her and hates it when I tell him that.”
“What are they going on about now?” Last week it was the fact that he was not going to let the council use his house when they had conventions. Then just yesterday it was about how much time he was spending on projects and not helping his subjects.
“She told him she was wrong about his time with our subjects, and he had to go on and on about how wrong she was about everything else he’d been doing. Of course, she told him to screw off and that put his nose out of joint. I swear to you, I’m having the time of my life. I had popcorn this morning to watch them. Needless to say he didn’t find that as humorous as Kennedy and I did.” The doctor was waiting for them outside the room. “I’m Clarice Silva. I’ve come to see what I can do about helping out our Jane Doe.”
Vinnie was always surprised to hear Clar attach her name with Stephen’s. He had never thought his friend would want a mate, and now it seemed they were inseparable.
They walked into the room. He’d been in there every hour for ten minutes since the woman had been brought out of surgery. He’d given her a little of his magic; not enough to heal her, but something to ease her pain. But he was still blown away by how horrible she looked lying there. Clar stood staring at her as well before she spoke to him through their connection.
You should know that they had her for several days before you found her. He nodded, already figuring that out from the bruises on her skin. Vinnie, they had other women there with her.
Other women? She nodded and looked at the doctor, who left them. Vinnie knew that Clar had done that so they could talk.
“She saw nine other women there. Most of them have been there for a while, but a couple were brought in after she was. She has it in her head that they were going to kill 
her to make room for the others.” He looked at the woman, then sat down as Clar continued. “She knows the men. I’ve not been able to find out how or who they are. Some of the head injuries that she has are blocking that even from me. But in time she will remember or I will find it. Either way, we’ll bring them to justice.”
“Do you know her name?” She nodded and sat beside him. He wasn’t sure he wanted to know now. There was something so…terrifying about the way Clar was looking at him.
“Her name is Abigale Curry.” He knew the name. Vinnie stood up when who she was came crashing into his memories. Good Christ, it couldn’t be her. He stood up and asked Clar twice more what her name was. It didn’t change either time.
“No. Oh, hell no. It can’t be.” He started for the door, only to be brought up short by Clar holding him there. “It can’t be her.”



Happy Reading 

                                                                 Kathi S Barton 



Sunday, May 10, 2015

Royce The Hunter Series Chapter One ready to read



Chapter 1
Kasey tried to think. She was so exhausted that she could only think about walking home, crawling into her bed, and closing her eyes. The noise around the locker room dimmed as she fell asleep sitting up, no longer able to keep her eyes open. It wasn’t until someone jerked her arm that she turned to stare at her boss, Mike White.
“I’ve been calling your name for ten minutes. What the hell is wrong with you?” She jerked her arm out of his tight grasp and looked at her locker. “I need you to work another shift, Betty, and I don’t care what other plans you have.”
She dropped her shoes in the open locker without looking up. “My name is Kasey, not Betty. Perhaps if you’d said the correct name in the first place I could have saved you the extra nine minutes to tell you that I’m not working for you.”
She cringed at his laughter. It always reminded her of a braying jackass. “I didn’t ask you to work. I said you were. Just stay away from the front until all the managers are in and you’ll be—”
“Look jerk-off, I’ve just come off a sixteen-hour shift and I can’t work anymore. I’m going home.” She stood up and watched as he backed up. She was at least six inches taller than him.
“You work it or I find someone that will, and I don’t mean just this shift, but permanently. Do you understand? I’m the boss, you are the employee. I’ll see you out front in ten minutes.”
When he walked away she nearly burst into tears. This was her third sixteen-hour shift this week at this job and it was only Wednesday. In addition to this job she had two others. She reached in and pulled out her boots to pull them back onto her aching feet.
“Are you working it?” Kasey looked over at her friend Toby. “You’ll have to be unarmed to work that. Even if it is illegal for you to carry past that many hours without sleep, don’t let him talk you into working armed. You’ll be the only one to catch hell.”
“I’ll go and disarm after I pull on my boots. Could you call and tell them I’m coming down? I don’t want to make prissy ass wait any more than he has to.”
Kasey York stood up after pulling on her boots and tried to make her uniform look better. It was difficult to do with the thing a triple X and her a medium at best. She tucked as much of the excess shirt into her too large pants and hoped her belt, which had seen better years, held up a little longer. When she had done as much as she could she walked down the hall to the armory.
“Hey there, sweetcakes. I just heard you was a’workin another shift. Are you trying to die at a young age or you wanna go for the world record of going without sleep?”
“Hi, Uncle Jay. Nah, Tweedle-stupid is making me. I have to turn my stuff in.” Kasey took the clip out of her Glock and handed it to her uncle. Then with her spotter there, she took her weapon out of the holster and handed it to him. She watched as he shot the round out of the muzzle and showed her it was empty. He handed it over to the armament and her uncle winked to her as he sauntered off.
“Honey, you need to take a break. You’re gonna get sick and that ain’t gonna do your momma any good.” Uncle Jay handed her the paper to sign her weapon in as he continued. “You come on over to the house after work and crash. Your aunt and I would love to have you.”
After agreeing she would think about it, knowing she wouldn’t bother, she went back up to the front of the lobby to see what her assignment was going to be. Prissy ass Mike was taping his foot and glaring at her when she got there. She was late, he told her as a greeting, and then proceeded to tell her what she was to do for the next eight hours—as if she didn’t know how to do her job.
Kasey had worked for Hunter Corporation for ten years in security. She was a part-time third-shifter that had never been able to be hired on as full-time. But it mattered little in the amount of hours she worked. In the past eight years, she’d averaged about sixty-five to eighty or more hours a week consistently. The problem was, she couldn’t get the benefits without the full-time status. Benefits that would do her a world of good not just for the insurance, but for the bonuses that she wasn’t entitled to get quarterly, and the pay raises.
She was just finishing up her tour of the building when she noticed that Butler, the day shift desk person, waved her over. She went to him smiling. She really liked the older man.
“Oh, darling, I gotta go. My wife made some of her famous chili last night and I’m about to die here. You think you can watch things for me for a bit? I won’t be but twenty minutes at best.”
Kasey agreed to watch the doors. The people coming in had slowed to a trickle now that it was nearing ten o’clock so she didn’t think Prissy would mind. She kept on her feet knowing that if she sat down, she’d be out.
It had been over fifty hours since she’d been to bed. She had gotten here to work her first part of this shift at two in the afternoon the day before yesterday. Kasey had worked as a bartender the night before that and helped clean the hotel rooms with her mom that morning before coming in. She was looking at the monitors when a group of men and women came in. They all badged in but the one in the middle. Kasey turned to stop him.
“Excuse me. Sir.” She’d said it louder when he all but ignored her. “Sir, you didn’t badge in. I’m sorry, but I’m going to have to ask you to come back and do so.”
She nearly swallowed her tongue when he turned to look at her. Now here was a man to keep a woman up all night and have her not care if she was tired. She flushed at the thought, wondering where on earth that had come from. The man next to him tried to step between her and the man, but she stopped him with a hand on his forearm.
“He doesn’t need to badge in. He’s—”
“I don’t really care who he is. He could be the Czar of Russia for all I care. But he still needs to badge in.” She looked at the man who had been silent as she and the man next to him argued. “Look, the man who owns this building went to a great expense to put this thing in. It’ll take you all of two seconds to simply flash your badge at it. You don’t even have to dig it out of you—”
“Look…Officer York, I don’t think you—”
The man had grabbed her arm and she acted out of reflex. He was turned away from her with his arm up to his shoulder blade before he could finish his sentence. She forced him to the floor before she could think that she might have overreacted. “I’m sure we can work something out that doesn’t involve breaking the arm of my brother, don’t you think, Officer York. Jesse?” The man helped his brother up when Kasey stepped back and let him go. “Now, you were saying something about a badge. I don’t believe I’ve ever been stopped for one before. Is this really necessary?”
She didn’t like to be a bitch, but she’d read about this sort of thing happening when a gunman wanted to take out the top guy for whatever reason. She wasn’t going to be the one to let the bad guy in on her watch. She didn’t think this guy looked like a shooter, but she was sure that lots of people said that about their neighbors all the time when they happened to shoot up a restaurant or place of business.
“Yes, sir. Why just last year at the Christmas party, the owner was telling us what a fine job we’d been doing keeping that little machine in proper working order. He did pay for it and all and was glad that it was being put to fine use. I’d really hate to disappoint him by letting someone get by me without letting them have the opportunity to make his day.” Kasey smiled, but her stance was firm. She didn’t have any idea who the owner of this building was and if asked, he probably didn’t have a care in the world about that stupid badge machine, but now it was a matter of making a point. A point that she’d been right and Jesse—staring at her as if she had two heads—had been wrong in thinking she was going to just let this go.
“I don’t believe I have a badge, Officer York. Perhaps you could see if I do and then bring it up to me. I’m late for a board meeting and there are people waiting on me.” The man smiled at her charmingly and she figured that worked for him a lot.
“I would be happy to see if you do, sir. And if you don’t, it’ll only take three minutes to print one up for you. This is very important, you see. The reason we have the people badge in and out is so that in the event of a fire, we have a roll call already built in to see who is in the building when they come in and out. It’s for your own safety.”
He stared at her for several seconds before he walked to the desk with her. She was just pulling up the badging program to search for his name when Mike came up beside her. He jerked on her arm so hard she knew he was going to leave a bruise.
“What the hell are you doing?” he snarled at her ear. “I told you to stay out of the lobby until everyone was gone.”
“This man didn’t have a badge. I was just seeing if he had one.” She started to put in her password when Mike pulled her back again.
“Don’t,” the man said in a low voice.
Kasey pulled her hands off the keyboard and Mike stepped back. She looked over at the man who seemed to be willing to look up his badge information, then she looked at her boss.
“She doesn’t know what—” Mike started with a stammer.
“Apparently she does. Now step back so that she can see about my badge.” He turned to her with a smile that didn’t reach his eyes. “What do you need to look up my name?”Kasey wasn’t stupid. She knew something more than this badge business was going on. She looked between the two men, took another step back, and put her hands up in defense. She wasn’t sure what was going on, but she had a feeling that she’d opened a can of worms that was going to get her into trouble.
“Mr. White here can finish this up for you, sir. I’m supposed to be on a round right now and…well, look, there’s my replacement now.” Kasey had never been so happy to see someone coming toward her as she was to see Butler. But the man had other ideas.
“You started this, Officer York, and you’ll finish this. What do you need to find my badge information?” She knew then that she was going to lose her job. With a sigh of resignation she stepped back to the keyboard and, with trembling fingers, she started typing.
“Your name will do. Unless you know your employee number, either will do.” She looked at him when she had put in her password and could feel the heat of Mike’s anger rolling off him and onto her. “If it’s not in here, we can print one in no time and you can be on your way.”
He smiled again. “Of course. But let me spell it for you. Don’t want it wrong on the thing, do I? My first name is Royce.” She typed it in as he spelled it. “My last name is Hunter.”
Her fingers stilled on the keys. Well, of course he is. Why not? her mind screamed at her. Why wouldn’t she stop the owner of the building and make a scene about badging in? She watched as the name Hunter popped up on the screen in front of her. Jesse was there, as was another man named Daniel and yet another named Curtis. She was so fucked. But she knew that she had to finish this.
“No sir, there doesn’t seem to be a badge for you. If you’d like to go with Mr. White here, he can get your picture taken and—”
“You’ll do it, Officer York. I wouldn’t want anyone else at this point.” He handed his briefcase to his brother and told him to go on up. He’d be up shortly before he turned back to her. “Shall we?”
“I can’t.”
He raised a well-shaped brow at her.
“I mean, I don’t have the clearance to make badges. Mr. White will need to take it from here.” She moved back only to be stopped by his next command.
“You’ll come along then. You should really learn all aspects of this job, don’t you think?”
Yeah, she thought, it was going to do her a lot of good to know how to print a badge at the Hunter building while she was unemployed. She nodded and followed Mike. She wanted to burst into tears, but she’d learned a long time ago that tears got you nothing but a runny nose and a headache.
Mr. Hunter sat for his picture. Kasey thought she’d ask for a copy so that the next time she wanted to stop the owner of a company for a trivial thing, she’d pull out this man’s picture to remind herself of what not to do. She just wanted this over with and if the daggers that Mike was sending her were any indication, she’d be done here before the ink dried on the stupid badge. But the badge printer wasn’t working for him. No matter how many times Mike tried to get it to work, it kept telling him he was putting the wrong information in. Kasey just watched him struggle.
Working nights gave her a lot of time to read and Kasey would read anything and everything. One night in a desperate attempt to stay awake when a murder mystery she’d already figured out didn’t help she’d read the manual on the badge making process, including the manual on the equipment. But she didn’t move forward to show Mike he was doing wrong. She just clenched and unclenched her fists until he gave up. He turned to Mr. Hunter.
“I can give you a temporary badge until the repair guy gets here later. Then when he’s fixed it, I’ll be able to print your badge, now that I have the picture, and bring it up to you to your office.”
Mr. Hunter was staring at her. She knew that he had figured out she could fix the machine, but for whatever reason he let it go. She was more grateful than she ever thought she’d been.
“All right. But have Officer York bring it up.” She looked up at him sharply when he said that. “I’ll be in meetings all day, but she can catch me between them.” He walked away without a backward glance.
Kasey looked over at Mike when the door to his office closed with a snap. She started to turn to leave, but he snarled at her. Before she could think about what he was doing, she was on the floor and her head felt as if it had exploded.



Stay Tune for Next Week Chapter Two 


Books In the series 


THE HUNTERS -









Sunday, May 3, 2015

CHAPTER FORTY-TWO & FORTY-THREE is ready to read !!!!!!!!!!


CHAPTER FORTY-TWO
Nick had been sitting by Morgan’s bed for the past two days. He’d only left
the hospital once and that was because his mother had threatened to have
Damon sedate him if he didn’t leave for at least an hour. So he did, and was back
in exactly sixty minutes.
“Nicky, any word yet?” Devin had been in and out a lot. He’d been bringing
him food and drinks. He hadn’t eaten anything, but Devin continued to bring
them.
“No, she’s still out. Damon said that she’s healthy and strong and the babies
are doing well so we shouldn’t worry.” Sure, he thought. Not to worry. She’d
almost killed herself getting away from him.
They were both quiet for a few minutes before Nick spoke again. “I couldn’t
tell her I loved her. She ran from me—no, I drove her away because I couldn’t
say I love her.”
“Do you? Love her, I mean?”
That was all he’d thought about since he’d seen her lying there bleeding on
the cold floor in his lobby. And her screams; he could still hear them, echoing
through his head and tearing into his heart like a blade. But it was her words, her
telling him that she hated him that hurt the most. It was right then that he knew
what his heart had been trying to tell him all along. He loved Morgan Becky
Grant. He thought he’d been in love with her from the very first time that he’d
met her only he’d been too stubborn and much too stupid to realize what a
wonderful and giving woman she was.
“Yes. Yes, I love her. There is so much about her that I…she makes me laugh.
I have never laughed so much until I met her. Did you know that she has her
own business? I’ve never met a braver person than Morgan. I don’t think she’ll
ever believe me. But I do. Oh God, Devin, I’ve fucked this up so badly.” He
leaned forward in his chair and rested his head on his hands.
Nick looked up at her as she moaned. She didn’t move so once every shift,
one of the nurses would come in and roll her to her side, one side then the other.
They were doing it for the babies’ sake. Her lying on the bed like that gave them
less room to move and they needed to get into a better position to be born.
It wouldn’t be long now, Damon told him. Morgan would need to stay on
complete bed rest for at least another week before he felt better about letting her
go into labor again. She had been in the beginning stages of it when she’d been
brought in. They’d stopped it with drugs. The loss of blood and the ten flights of
stairs had weakened her and he feared for her health if they didn’t wait. But, he
told him, she would need to be awake before he’d start her labor up.
That had been two days ago. He stood up, walked over to her bed, and
looked down at her. Her skin was warmer than it had been in the ambulance.
Her lips were still slightly blue, but not like they had been. Nick felt for her pulse
and was relieved that it felt strong against his fingers.
“Oh, Morgan, I’m so very sorry for everything I’ve done to you. I want you
to wake up and scream and yell at me. Give me that look, the one that says ‘you
are just too stupid, aren’t you?’ Come on, Morgan, please wake up.” He sat down
again, closer to the bed, and laid his head on her and cried.
~~~
Morgan blinked open her eyes against the harsh light. She didn’t know
where it was coming from, but it seemed to be shining right into her head.
“Hello, Morgan. Welcome back.” It was Damon and he was the source of
light. He was trying to blind her with a flashlight that she could finally see in his
hand. He let her move away from the light.
“Where...where am?” She couldn’t make her words form, but he seemed to
understand.
“You’re in Grant Hospital. You’ve been here four days. You gave us quite a
scare. Please don’t do that again. Do you remember what happened?”
Nickolas. She’d been at Nickolas’ apartment. Sex. She’d told him... Yes, it
came back to her with perfect clarity. He’d said he didn’t love her.
“Yes. When can I go home?” His laughter startled her. She wanted to go
home. There were still things she needed to get taken care of.
“I believe it would be better if you stayed here. At least until the babies are
born. You’ve been in and out of labor for the past four days. Now that you’re
awake, I’d like to deliver them and get them into your arms for a change. How
does that sound?”
“Labor? I don’t...it doesn’t hurt. Shouldn’t it hurt?” She rubbed her hand
along her belly and felt the difference immediately. It was harder and lower.
“You will. I need to call Nicky and let him know...”
“No! I don’t want him here. I don’t want to see him. He’ll...when they’re
born, then he can come. Not yet.”
“I’m sorry, Morgan, but I have to call him. He’s my brother and I can’t...
Whatever differences you two have can be worked out, but he’ll never get this
opportunity again to see his first child born.”
Morgan knew he was right. And, she thought, its part of the contract they
had together, that he be there when they were born. She only nodded and turned
away from him. She didn’t know how long labor was, but it would be over soon
and she’d be moving on.
Nickolas arrived an hour later. Damon told her that he waited as long as he
could, telling her she needed to be prepped anyway.
Morgan was taken down to labor and delivery about twenty minutes after
she woke up. She already had an IV in, so all they needed to do was add another
line to the one she already had running. Damon explained all the equipment to
her and what he was going to use to begin with. She had opted for an epidural
and they were waiting until she was five centimeters before they administered it
to her. Damon had just finished examining her when Nickolas walked in.
“Good timing. She’s moving right along now. You’re at four centimeters
now, so within the next hour, we’ll have Dick come in and give you some happy
meds. You’ll need to be very still when he injects you so you’ll need someone to
hold you. Nicky, can you hold her up while he does it?”
“No, he doesn’t have to. I’d rather...it’s okay. I don’t need him to hold me. I’ll
be very still,” she said.
“Morgan, don’t be stupid. He’ll hold you. Now, I don’t want any more of
this shit going on in my delivery room, understand me? The two of you will
work together on this, or I’ll go home. I’ve got more important things to do than
to watch you two bicker about who does what. I’m in charge, and do as I say.”
Damon looked at her first and when she nodded, he glared at his brother. When
he nodded too, Damon started barking orders to the staff.
“Mom and the others are in the waiting room. They want to know if it’s okay
if they come in to see you before we start.”
Morgan realized that this would be the last time she’d see them. Because
after today, there’d be no reason for them to want her around anymore. She
nodded at him, her throat suddenly closed up tight.
Mrs. Parker came in first, and hugged her tightly. Morgan took her hand and
laid it on the foot she could feel pressing tightly against her belly.
“Thank you, Mrs. Parker. Thank you for everything you did for me,”
Morgan said to her softly.
“Morgan, do you think you could call me Margaret just this once? I was
hoping for Mom, but I’ll take Margaret.”
“Thank you, Margaret. Thank you very much.” With another tight hug, she
left. The men came in next. All five of them huddled around her like a brigade of
troops.
They all hugged her tightly and Spencer handed her a small planter from
Meggie. “They won’t let her come up. But Tansy said she’d sneak her up later to
see you.” Morgan nodded. She was beginning to think that she’d never be able to
speak again around the knot in her throat. A few minutes later, they were
ushered out.
Dick Sergeant came in and told her what was involved in the epidural. She
leaned all her weight forward onto Nick so that Dr. Sergeant could get her back
without any problems.
The pain was horrific and she couldn’t hold back her cry no matter how hard
she tried. Nick started cooing at her, telling her he had her. She couldn’t listen
over the pain. Soon, it was over and she was lying back on the bed.
Almost at once, she could feel the pain recede. She knew the contractions
were getting stronger because the monitor on the wall would beep rapidly when
she had one. Nick had started telling her when the contractions were beginning,
but she wouldn’t look at him, so he stopped.
At six-thirty, nearly five hours after she was injected, she felt the urge to
push. The room became a blur of movements and voices. Nick kept mopping her
face and giving her ice chips whenever she seemed to need them. They had long
given up even the pretense of trying to talk to one another. He just watched her,
and when she must have looked needy, he’d mop.
“All right, Morgan, Nicky, it’s show time. You’re fully dilated and effaced.
The next time you have the urge to push, Morgan, I want you to push from here,
all right?” He patted her bottom as he spoke.
Nick was asked to get up behind her on the bed and hold her up, bending
her at the waist to help with the pushing. He was to keep her focused and to
have her rest between contractions. Without a word, he did what he was asked.
Nearly thirty minutes later, Damon shouted he had a head. Five minutes
after that, he was laying a little body on her lap. Morgan closed her eyes. She
couldn’t get attached to him this late in the game. When the nurse took him
away, she leaned heavily back against Nick before she thought. She started to
pull away and forward when he told her to be still.
“Did you see our son, Morgan? Isn’t he beautiful?”
She didn’t answer because the next contraction hit hard.
Baby boy two didn’t want to be born, she thought. Not that she could blame
him. The world was cold and cruel. Twenty-nine minutes after his brother came
into the world, baby boy Grant two was born.
Morgan was drained and exhausted. By time they had finished cleaning her
up and her bed cleaned too, she was asleep. She didn’t move when they came
into check her, nor did she stir when someone came in and took her temperature
and blood pressure. For a full twenty-eight hours, she slept.
CHAPTER FORTY-THREE
As soon as she opened her eyes, she searched for the phone. It was time to
go. Morgan knew that the sooner she left, the better off everyone would be. She
reached for the phone to call Mrs. Sugar.
By prior arrangement, Libby would come as soon as she called her. Libby
would come to the hospital and bring Morgan everything she needed to leave
and while she left the hospital, Libby would wait in her bed until some noticed
the switch. Morgan wasn’t waiting to be released. She was just going to go.
“I’m ready, can you come now?” Morgan didn’t even know what time is was
and hoped that she hadn’t woke them up. Mick sounded fine and wide awake
when he answered.
“Yeah, darling. We’ll be there as soon as I can get the car started. Should be
in about ten minutes.”
They were there in seven. Morgan moved to the bathroom and changed with
Libby’s help. She hadn’t realized she’d be so weak. Only having to stop twice,
she was dressed in less than five minutes. She was nearly to the door when she
turned around and put the little planter that Meggie had sent her into her regular
purse.
Morgan was leaving the pink bag behind. There was no way she could carry
it without someone noticing it. Also, she didn’t know if she could look at it again
without thinking of all that she was leaving behind. Kissing Libby on the cheek,
Morgan and Mick left her room. She was crying softly when they got to the
elevators and nearly had to be carried by Mick by the time they got there.
Mick pushed the button for the elevator and looked at her. “Morgan, honey,
I want you to know that we love you like a daughter. In fact, sometimes, I think
we love you more than our own kids. I want you to know this was the hardest
thing I’ve ever done.”
“Thank you, Mr. Mick. I’ll always remember this. I swear I’ll try and keep in
touch with you.” The elevator dinged and she looked at it expectantly.
“I surely hope so. Morgan, I’m so sorry honey. But this is the only way. It
had to be done.” She looked at him, confused, and watched as he walked away.
As the door opened, she suddenly understood.
“Morgan, love, were you going somewhere?”
Damn it. Mick had ratted her out to Nickolas.
“Dr. Grant. I’m going home. We had a deal. I lived up to my part, now I
want you to live up to yours. Let me go home.” If she didn’t sit down soon, she
was going to fall down. Damn him for being a strong man.
“I want to show you something first. It’s just down here.” He stepped out of
the elevator and took her arm and headed them toward the nursery. Not now;
she couldn’t do this now.
“Oh no, I don’t think so. The last time you wanted to ‘show’ me something, I
made a fool of myself. If it’s all the same to you, I’ll just stay right here and you
can show someone else. Someone more in your league.” Okay, the wall was
looking really good right now. Moving toward it, because the stupid thing was
moving, she reached out to touch it. It suddenly wasn’t there. It had moved at
least ten more feet away.
That stupid floor was moving now, so fast too. If she wanted to, she thought,
she could practically touch it without bending over. But the shouting, it had to
go. “Morgan? Morgan!”
~~~
Slowly, Morgan started to make her way up from the deep darkness where
she’d been. She felt heavy and weightless at the same time. She opened her eyes
and looked around in the semi darkness. The hospital again. Damn it, was she
never going to be able to make a clean escape.
“No, I don’t plan on letting you escape again,” Nickolas said from behind
her. She rolled over to her back and looked toward where she thought he was.
He was lying in the bed next to her.
“I thought I was talking to myself. I didn’t realize that I’d spoken out loud.
Why are you here? I thought you’d be home with your sons.”
Morgan wanted to reach up and smooth the hair off his forehead. Touching
him would solve so many of life’s problems, and create so many more.
“I can’t take them yet. I haven’t even been down to see them yet,” he said
softly.
How was that possible? She’d been here at least two days. Damon said that
they were healthy and...oh God!
“What’s happened to them, Nickolas? Are they hurt? Sick? Tell me. Oh, my
poor little... Why are you laughing at me? This is not funny.” She smacked him
on the chest.
“You know, you only call me by my first name when you’re being passionate
about something? Our sons are fine. I wanted to see them the first time with their
mom. You see, I got this delivered the morning before you had them.” He leaned
over and picked up something from the bedside table. “In it is the deed to the
house and an account that gives them all your money. I thought that was a very
strange gesture for a woman who claims she doesn’t know how to love anyone.”
“I loved you and look where that got me.” She regretted it as soon as she
said it. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t...it’s not your fault. I’m just, I’d like for you to go
now.” Morgan tried to roll back over and he stopped her.
“Morgan, I’m the one who is sorry. I was stupid and...” He paused and
looked down at her.
“Yeah, go on.”
He burst out laughing. Then she did something incredibly stupid. She let
him kiss her.
It was tender and soft. Barely a touch to her mouth. His breath was warm,
his tongue hot against her lips. When he pulled her lower lip into his mouth, she
moaned at the sensations he created.
“Oh, Morgan. I do love you.”
Pulling back from him, she looked at his face. Tears had welled in his eyes
and he looked so sad.
“I have to tell you a story. My wife Margo and I had been childhood
sweethearts. I met her in first grade and we stayed as friends, even when I went
to private school. We didn’t always get along. Seldom a day went by that we
didn’t fight about something. As we got older, the fights took on a surreal quality
to them. We’d fight then have this incredible sex. But now I realize that’s all it
was. Sex.
“When I got out of high school and moved home, she was there. One night
after we’d had sex, she told me she was pregnant. I was overwhelmed and
happy. A baby. Of course, we got married a few weeks later, and that’s when
things started getting bad.
“You see, she wasn’t pregnant at all. She’d trapped me. About a month after
our wedding, she started having an affair. I guess I knew she’d been sleeping
around, but I thought after we married she’d settle down. It only got worse.” He
rolled to his back and pulled her to him tightly. Morgan didn’t say anything but
let him talk.
“On our first wedding anniversary, she claims she’s pregnant again.”
He was quite for so long she thought he was going to stop. She knew that
this is what he’d been leading up to. Leaning up, she looked down at him this
time. “It wasn’t yours, was it? Oh, Nickolas... she was a fucking bitch.”
He laughed and pulled her to him again. “My protector. Yes, she was. She
claimed the baby was mine. But I knew that we’d stopped having sex about three
months before this. It wasn’t as though she hadn’t been trying to...hummm, lure
me back, but I’d just had enough. Then when that wasn’t working, a couple of
months later, she said that it was my father’s. I didn’t want to believe her. I’m
still not sure, but...”
“They died together. It wasn’t your dad’s either. I just know it. She wanted to
hurt you and found a way to do it. Oh, Nickolas, I’m so sorry.” She huddled
down onto his chest again and cried softly over his heart.
“Morgan, I love you. I should have said that to you long before now. I
should have said a lot of things to you long before now. I want you to come
home with me, build a life with me, for me. I want you to help me raise our
children. I want to have more babies with you.”
“I don’t know how to love anyone, and I’ve no clue about children. I don’t
know if I can do this.”
“Morgan, you gave your entire savings, house, and everything you own to
our sons. What does that say about you?”
“It says that I’m barely making a dent in what you have to give them. It’s all
I had, all I thought I could leave them.”
“Yes, baby, it says you love them. No matter how hard you tried not to, you
still fell in love with them. You were going to leave them a part of you,
something of you, from you. That’s love, and that’s why I love you.” He kissed
her again. This time, it was with love. She could feel it.
“I’m going to go and have the nurse bring us our babies. Then Mom is going
to bring us some dinner and we’re going to have a huge family discussion.” He
hopped off the bed and was striding toward the door.
“Wait! What kind of family discussion? Nickolas, what are you talking
about?”
“Why we have to name them, don’t we?”
Morgan looked at him, really looked at him. Name them? She glared at him
as he came back toward the bed.
“You’ve not named our sons? Right now they are laying down there in that
nursery and people are calling them Grant boy one and Grant boy two. Oh
Nickolas, how could you?” She was trying hard not to laugh; the expression on
his face was priceless. “What do you think the other children are going to say to
them? They will be teased and teased. Is that what you want?”
Nick put his fingers over his lips and seemed to contemplate her query.
“Maybe they won’t notice they don’t have names. Maybe they’ll be so
overwhelmed with our combined beauty in them that the other children won’t
notice. I’ll go get them and we’ll make sure they aren’t too scarred.” His quick
kiss had her reeling.
Morgan sat up a little more in the bed as soon as he left. She was sore and
tired, but she was suddenly filled with…love, she realized. She was filled with
love. When the door opened again, a nurse was pushing a large bassinet at her
with Nickolas right behind her. Morgan couldn’t help the happiness she felt at
seeing her sons. Hers and Nickolas’ sons.
When the nurse handed her the first little bundle, she didn’t know what to
do. Terror at hurting him, dropping him, nearly had her pull away. But the
moment he was settled in her arms, it was as if she’d come home. And when
Nickolas settled down next to her and was handed his blue bundle, everything
came together. Family.
Morgan leaned back against her husband and held her little boy in her arms
and knew what his name was. “This one is Anthony Patrick Grant and his little
brother is Nickolas Markus Grant. They’ll be called Anthony and Markus. What
do you think?”
“I think, love, that is perfect. Absolutely perfect. I love you.”
“I love you too, Nickolas, and I always will.”




Tune in next week  for a start of a new book 



Buy Link for the Box set  grab for 9.99 



Buy links

THE GRANT BROTHERS -
2 DEVIN – http://smarturl.it/devin  
4 BYRON – http://smarturl.it/byron  
5 JAMIE – http://smarturl.it/jamie  


The grant brothers series in reading order 


New Release is Jace 


The Double Deuce Ranch is in trouble. The taxes have tripled over the years, and the repair bills and cost of supplies are more than the Douglas men can scrape together to save the ranch. Short of a miracle they are on the street.
Holly Snow has already bought four ranches this month saving them from the greedy banker. She’ll save the Double Deuce, too, if Georgie Douglas will let her. Something underhanded is driving all the ranches into foreclosure and she is determined to get to the bottom of it. To her, money is no object.
Jace Douglas knows from the moment he sees Holly in that jail cell, beaten but proud, that she is his mate. His cat wants to claim his mate, but he doesn’t have two nickels to rub together, there is no way he is taking her for a mate. He can’t afford her. He is out of her league…
Fate, however, has other ideas, and money, although a huge factor, never is the issue between them. Jace likes to play…a little rough. And Holly might be of a mind to just play along…


http://smarturl.it/jacePrideDoubleDeuce

Fair warning dark fantasy werecougars  and some bondage in this book please 18 and older

         

                   

                         




Happy Reading 

Kathi  S Barton