Chapter One: Mate, Found
Sharissa Flemmings looked up at the building before her. She never thought it would come to this, needing a bodyguard. Shar had heard that the men who worked here were Shifters, which means strong and aggressive. Just what she needs to protect herself from her ex and his minions. If she’d known Johnny was part of a mob, she’d never have dated him, let alone slept with him.
Now the asshole thinks she’s his property. She’s no one’s property, least of all a mobster’s. She shook her head with annoyance.
Damn you, Johnny Vega.
She cursed herself for thinking about him and opened the door to the building. With a deep, reassuring breath, she stepped through the door of the building that housed: Kraftman Brothers Security. She could hear shouts coming from a room close to the entrance and thought to herself that maybe she should have arrived at another time.
But as they say, curiosity killed the cat. But Shar isn’t a cat.
“I don’t give a flying monkey’s ass if she smelled like a million spring flowers, we don’t fuck clients!”
“Not like any of us will find our mates anytime soon!” another voice yelled back.
Shar paused; what had she walked into the middle of?
“Uh Brothers, we have a customer,” a man said as he walked into the waiting area.
Shar stared at the enormous man. His silver eyes looked her up and down, and she felt her cheeks turn a bright red.
“We’re not finished with this! And you stay here!”
Shar almost bolted out the door when another three men came charging into the waiting room with the other man who was still staring at her as if she was a long lost, she didn’t know what.
All four men were enormous, like well over six feet and muscles so thick, they strained against their suits.
“I…” Shar started, then stopped. She watched as the brother who had been getting the scolding of his life walked into the room.
“Fuck, me,” Dustin grumbled when he saw the woman in their waiting room.
The pull to her was too strong for him to ignore. His Cougar wanted her and in the worst way. He wouldn’t stop pacing, and it made the hair on his arms stand on end. He must have her before his brothers claimed her.
Before anyone could stop him, he marched towards the woman. Her eyes grew large as saucers as she backed away from him.
“Mine,” he said as he stared into her blue eyes.
Her long blond hair hung down to her hips. Hips which he wanted to grab hold of while he fucked her brains out.
Shar continued to back away from the enormous man who was stalking her into a corner. She could hear his brother’s hollering at him in the background, but she couldn’t make out any of their words; her blood was pounding in her ears so loud.
She squealed when the man lifted her off her feet and pinned her to his chest, then sniffed her. He seriously just sniffed her.
Dustin took in a deep breath of the woman’s scent. A scent meant only for him.
“Dustin!” one of his brothers shouted.
It was more than likely Daryl. Just because he’s the oldest, he thinks he can boss the rest of them around. So what if he’s their so-called boss, they all own the company.
“Dustin, put her down, now!” Daryl growled.
Dustin stared into the woman’s eyes. They were so blue, and the most beautiful pair of eyes he had ever seen. How is he going to claim her with his brothers all around them?
“Dustin,” one of his brothers said, placing his hand on Dustin’s arm.
Dustin growled without taking his eyes off the woman in his arms.
Dylan removed his hand from his brother’s arm. He knows that growl. His brother’s Cougar is close to the surface. He hoped his brother didn’t change while holding the woman.
“Dustin, let her go, or I swear to the Goddesses I will castrate you!” Daryl yelled.
Dustin shook his head to clear it. His brother sounded serious. Now that he has found his Fated Mate, he can’t let his brothers cockblock him. But for now, he will let her go.
Shar sucked in a breath when the man set her on her feet. There was something about him, something that pulled her to him, and it disappointed her that his brothers were intruding on whatever it was.
“Sorry about that, ma’am,” one of the brothers said as they shoved Dustin away from her.
Shar’s eyes never left Dustin’s, who was staring at her as if he wanted to devour her. His silver eyes were so dark they were almost black.
“It-it’s okay,” Shar stuttered as she turned her head to look at the brother who had spoken to her.
“How may we help you?” the man asked, his smile warm and charming.
“I-I need a bodyguard.”
“You’ve come to the right place,” one of the other brothers said as he moved closer to her.
Dustin growled, and both men took a step back away from her.
“Damn it, Dustin, stop being territorial,” a man said, pushing the larger man aside. “Hello, ma’am, I’m Daryl Kraftman. These are my brothers Dylan and Dominic. Over there is Drezden,” he said, gesturing behind him.
Shar looked around the men surrounding her and waved to the brother who seemed to be shyer than the others. She had noticed that he had stayed out of whatever was going on between her and his brother. He smiled and waved back.
Dustin growled loudly, making Shar jump. His brother was right; he’s territorial. What does it all mean, anyway? She doesn’t need another dangerous man after her. She looked at the Shifter. His eyes bore into her soul, but she felt no fear towards him. No, what she felt was pure, raw desire. God, she wants him to fuck her until she passes out.
“Let us get some privacy,” Daryl said as he took hold of her arm.
Dustin growled so fiercely, Shar and the brothers froze.
“Take your hands off her,” Dustin said, a look in his silver eyes that scared the shit out of Shar.
Daryl let go of Shar’s arm and looked at his brother. “What the fuck has gotten into you, Dustin? Can’t you keep your Cougar in check?”
“My Cougar is right where he should be,” Dustin said with a growl.
“Right this way, ma’am,” Dylan said, gesturing for Shar to follow him.
“Don’t move!” Dustin bellowed.
Shar hunkered back away from the four men who were growling at each other.
“Dustin, whatever is going on with you, you need to check it, and I mean now! This woman is a customer, and she has asked for our help, or did you not get that part?”
Dustin shook his head, then looked over at the woman cowering against the wall. He cursed, then turned and walked away. His brother is right, he’s letting his Cougar take control, and at the moment, his Human half needs to keep control. But damn it, he and his Cougar are finally on the same page. She’s theirs, and they’re not letting someone else claim her!
He knows his brothers felt the pull too. When there is an unclaimed Fated Mate in a room, every Shifter can sense her and smell her. But only the female or male’s true mate can feel the vibrations coming from their Fated Mate’s body. A Shifter can claim someone else’s Fated Mate if they want to be a dick about it, but their mating will never be the same, and their bond will never form.
He needs to bond with her before one of his brothers gets horny enough to claim her for himself. She is beautiful. And she has a body you want to sink your teeth into—curvy, not too skinny and large, perfect tits.
Once Dylan and the woman left the room, Dustin paced the floor. How will he get her away from his brothers? He growled as he continued to walk back and forth.
“Chill, Brother,” Drezden said as he placed a hand on Dustin’s shoulder.
Dustin grumbled. There is no chilling for him, not until he has claimed his mate.
Dylan led Sharissa into a room with a large table and several chairs, then turned and left. She sat in a chair and waited for someone to question her. It didn’t take very long, and a brother walked into the room. But not the one she’d hoped to see again.
“I am sorry about my brother’s behavior,” Daryl said as he pulled out a chair at the table and sat down. “My brother can be a douche, but I’ve never seen him like that before.”
Shar nodded, “that’s okay.”
He smiled at her. “So, what can we help you with?”
She swallowed then took a deep breath. “As I had said, I need a bodyguard. My ex-boyfriend thinks he owns me and has sent his goons after me several times. I was lucky to have found a police officer each time, but my luck won’t hold out forever.”
Daryl growled deep in his throat. He knows she’s someone’s unclaimed Fated Mate. He can smell it on her. It was more than likely what had attracted his asshole of a brother to her. He’s surprised other Shifters in the area haven’t scented her out and claimed her as their own.
Not that Shifters went around cockblocking other Shifters. It’s a horrible offense to steal someone’s Fated Mate, but sometimes the lure of an unclaimed Fated Mate can be too much. But Daryl and his brothers are stronger than that. Well, all but his idiot brother who tries to stick his dick in every female he comes across.
“Who is your ex?” he asked the young woman, trying his best to concentrate on her circumstances and not her scent.
Dustin had said that their last client had smelled like a bouquet of wildflowers, and he couldn’t resist her. Well, if she had smelt that good, imagine how this woman smells to him and the rest of them. Damn near irresistible.
Down boy, she’s not yours. He hissed at his restless Cougar.
“Johnny Vega,” she said without looking at him.
Ah fuck. Daryl thought as his throat tightened.
Johnny had been in here the other day to hire them to find his missing girlfriend.
“You must be Sharissa Flemmings.”
She stared at him with wide eyes.
God, he can’t give her to Johnny. She’s a Shifter’s Fated Mate, and Johnny is not a Shifter. Which if she’s his ex, that proves he’s not any kind of Shifter. Because she wouldn’t be a Fated Mate anymore if a Shifter had claimed her. Or so he thinks.
Because from what he understands, all you have to do to claim someone else’s Fated Mate is fuck them before their mate can, which to him is beyond stupid. But he didn’t make the damn rules.
“Yes,” Shar whispered. “How did you know?”
“Don’t go anywhere,” he said, pointing at her.
“Please, Mr. Kraftman. If Johnny contacted you to find me, please don’t send me back to him.”
Daryl growled when he saw the tears in her eyes. What did that asshole do to her?
“Please, just stay here,” he said, then left the room.
Shar cried. She should have known Johnny would go to the best security company in the city to get help with capturing her. Because that is what it was, a capture. She needs to get out of here. But how can she do that with five powerful Shifters blocking her exit?
Dustin watched his brother leave the room he’d been in with the woman and sniffed the air. She was still unclaimed, good. With curiosity, he followed his brother.
“Okay, we have a problem here,” Daryl said as he entered the break room where their brothers were gathered.
“Can we help her?” Dylan asked as he jumped to his feet.
Dustin snarled, and the others looked at him.
“Dustin, not now,” Daryl grumbled, “we can all smell that she’s an unclaimed Fated Mate. Don’t go getting any crazy ideas and claiming her for yourself.”
Dustin sneered. He’s not telling his brothers she’s his unclaimed Fated Mate. Fuck, he needs to claim her. But first, he needs to find out what has his brother all fired up.
“So, what’s the problem?” Dustin asked, trying his hardest to block his Cougar from his thoughts.
“She’s Sharissa Flemmings,” Daryl said, and the three Kraftman brothers sitting jumped to their feet with snarls.
“You can’t let him have her! She’s a Fated Mate!” Dylan shouted.
“I know that!” Daryl hollered back.
“What are we going to do?” Drezden asked as he sat back down.
Dustin watched their youngest brother. He has always been the shyest of the brothers. He wondered what the boy would do if he found his mate.
“Well, we already accepted payment from Mr. Vega. But I’m not handing Miss Flemmings over to him. I don’t think it’s just a case of missing persons. She wants to hire us to protect her from him. Not to deliver her to him,” Daryl said.
Dustin’s Cougar raged inside him at the thought of someone hurting their mate. Without waiting to see what his brother planned to do with Miss Flemmings, he turned and left the break room. He needs to claim his mate now before his brother decided their company would be better off if they handed her over to the likes of Johnny Vega.
Though, he doubted his brother was that big of an asshole.