The Wolf's Call. The Two-Natured London 1.

This sample is from the chapter four. Rafe waits for Charly.

Left to his thoughts, the anticipation of seeing her again made the small room feel caging, and he began to pace it, unable to settle down. He was a tame wolf, well used to modern housing, but he preferred rooms that were a bit more spacious than one large enough only for a table for eight. Even the view from the window was cut by a high-rise across the street, the road between so narrow that he could see the faces of the people in the office opposite. If his business hadn’t required privacy, he would have suggested that they talked by her desk.

Besides, he couldn’t wait to be alone with her. His excitement baffled him, considering that he didn’t like human women, and that she was hardly the first woman he had tried to pursue. However, this time there was a difference to his chase. For the first time his wolf was showing interest in the woman too, pacing within him, wanting to be let out so that it could get a proper scent of her. It hadn’t accepted yet that their quarry wasn’t a shifter.

After what felt like an eternity but was less than five minutes, the door opened and she came in. Rafe paused in mid-stride and turned to face her. His brain ceased to function for a painful moment as all his blood flowed downwards, tightening his trousers again, indicating that his body hadn’t accepted reality either.

She was magnificent standing up, her posture straight and her well-formed calves showing to their advantage in a knee-length skirt that hugged her curvy hips. She paused at the door as if offering him a chance to look his fill, and he obliged. He ran his eyes slowly upwards, not wanting to spoil the moment by being hasty.

She had put on a form-fitting jacket that was probably meant to make her look professional, but as it was cut to bring out her narrow waist and emphasise her breasts, the effect on him was something quite else. Her face, once his eyes reached there, was as beautiful as he remembered, and slightly flushed for his slow study, as if she wasn’t used to being admired by men.

He wondered about it, but then again, human men, especially Englishmen of her class, weren’t known for openly showing appreciation for women of their species. He couldn’t understand such reticence. Shifters were creatures of emotions and instinct. When a shifter man was drawn to a woman, she knew it. And Charlotte was starting to know it too. Her heart was beating fast, making a pulse throb wildly at the base of her throat. He longed to sink his teeth into it and mark the slender white column so that everyone would know she belonged to him.

He closed the small distance separating them in a stride or two, noticing that her femininity became more pronounced next to his much larger body. She stiffened, but she didn’t retreat. She simply drew herself straighter and met his eyes calmly when he paused in front of her. He kept their gazes locked as he leaned towards her, and she tensed. Stifling a smile, he reached around her and closed the door Mr Latimer had left slightly ajar. She startled at the sound it made when it hit home.

Nervous, are we?

“There. Now we can be more comfortable,” he said, watching, fascinated, how she struggled to appear cold and unaffected by him. He wanted to prop his hands against the door, close her between them, and pin her down with his body simply to see her flush again.

But some civilised part in him made him gesture towards the table instead. “Shall we?”

For further measure, he walked to the table and held a chair for her. After only a brief hesitation, she walked to him, her hips swinging enticingly, and sat down. He got a good whiff of her scent again and she was still human. It didn’t matter to his body.

He took a seat at the end of the table, diagonally to her, setting the chair sideways so that he could face her. He rested his forearm on the desk and stretched his legs before him. Long as they were, they reached all the way to her chair, right up to her legs. He wanted to lean his legs against hers, but resisted. “I’m Raphael Green, but please call me Rafe.”

She frowned. “I’m afraid that is not very professional.” Her velvety voice had the same effect on his body as earlier, adding to his arousal. This promised to be a very painful conversation for him. “You’ll just have to deal with being called Mr Green.”

Her refusal delighted him, even though he didn’t generally hold to such formalities. “May I at least call you by your given name?”

She gave him a stern look. “No.”

He grinned, he couldn’t help it, and to his satisfaction her mouth quirked into a brief smile too. He had known her stiffness was only surface deep. He liked her name, but he needed to give her a name only the two of them would use anyway, so he nodded.

“Very well, we’ll be professional then. Here’s the deal. My family owns a fairly large development firm that operates mainly in the greater London area. For a couple of years now, we’ve been buying land in one of the villages south of M25, which we believe will be the next Epsom in popularity for London commuters. The plan is to build an exclusive community of more-expensive cottages. These plans are never popular with locals, however, so we’ve been buying in secret.” He paused and she nodded, indicating that she had been listening, even though her gaze kept dropping to his chest.

Stifling a satisfied smile, he shifted in his chair as if seeking a better position to sit in, offering her a better view. He didn’t mind her looking at his chest. For further measure, he let his wolf peek out too. The aura stretched well out of him towards her, studying her with its better sense of smell. It agreed that she was human, but that didn’t seem to deter it one bit.

Charlotte didn’t react to the wolf at all. She couldn’t see the aura. Humans couldn’t, which in general made living side by side with them a great deal easier, because they could pretend everyone was human. If it bothered the one-natureds that generation after generation dealt with the same client, or that a CEO of a vampire-owned company stayed the same for a hundred and fifty years without growing older, they didn’t let it show. But now Rafe couldn’t help being disappointed. He wanted her to see his wolf, and his beast wanted to be seen in turn.

“Someone found out about it though,” he continued, not letting his upset show. “It could be a coincidence, but I think it’s deliberate.”

“What is?” she asked, lifting her beautiful brown eyes to meet his. Her gaze didn’t waver at all, although humans tended to react to the alpha in him by lowering their eyes pretty fast. His wolf definitely expected it as its due. She just gritted her teeth when the impact of him hit her, and refused to submit.

Rafe was pleased by her show of strength. “Someone sold us a piece of land that wasn’t theirs to sell and then disappeared. We’ve got a long list of previous owners for the land, all of them fake.”

“Have you gone to the police?”

“No, and we’d rather not. We don’t want to draw any attention to our project until we’ve purchased all the land we need.”

“So you want me to do what?” She straightened in her chair, perfectly professional now, his chest forgotten. He felt ridiculously upset for it.

“We want you to find out who sold us the land and also who actually owns it. We’ve been unable to do either with the means we have.”

She nodded. “I’ve got an access to official records. Also, I’ve got contacts that I can use.”

He was intrigued. “What sort of contacts?”

She gave him a sly smile that he took as a challenge, his blood heating all the way down. “Secret contacts.”

He flashed a wolfish grin and, in a fluid move, got up from his chair to sit on the corner of the table. He was on a higher ground now and she had to lift her face to keep looking at him, which pleased his wolf. “Tell me more,” he urged with a smile, leaning towards her, but she wouldn’t budge.

“Are you trying to intimidate me, Mr Green?” she asked calmly, refusing to lean back.

“Call me Rafe.” But she just stared at him quietly, her arched brow challenging him to answer her question. It agitated his wolf, but he was so aroused he could barely breathe. He had never met a woman like her. “Yes, I am,” he answered, his every word deliberate. He pressed his hands on the armrests of her chair and leaned closer to her face, never breaking the eye contact. “Is it working?” Closing in the short distance, he kissed her.

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