Marcus closed the door to Cody’s office; he had called him earlier and let him know he was bringing in Eloise to talk about a stalker. He informed him of Eloise’s reluctance to come in at all, because of her hometown police force doing nothing about the stalker she had as a teen.
“What brings you here?” Cody asked, looking at Eloise. Marcus could sense the fear and nervousness rolling off of her in waves. Without asking permission, he took her hand in his and squeezed gently.
“I have had a stalker since the middle of August. I am a teacher and when I went back to work, I kept finding lewd notes written to me. They were tapped to my apartment door, on my pillow in my bedroom, my classroom door, my car windows and once I found one in my desk at school,” she explained, with shaking hands she pulled out the stack of letters. He was shocked by the amount, there had to be fifty letters neatly folded.
“Does he drop them off daily?” Cody asked, his face tense with suppressed emotion.
“It was once a week at first, then they became more frequent. I’ve been changing up my routine because he mentioned my favorite coffee shop, clothing stores, grocery store. After the incident with Jimmy the notes stopped for about a week. I thought the stalker had been Jimmy then, but they picked back up when I made my first appearance out in public. I went grocery shopping and when I came back to my car, I saw a note taped to my window. I grabbed it and bolted for home; I think I left my groceries in the cart. Since then I have employed a grocery service to drop food off at my home,” she shared and slipped her hand back into Marcus’, he was thrilled she wanted his touch.
“I am going to have my lab workers see if we can get any fingerprints off of the letters. We will need a set of yours to compare the prints too,” Cody announced.
“Mine are on file, I am a teacher and considered a government employee. When I was hired they took a set of my fingerprints,” she replied. Marcus watched her body remain rigid throughout their conversation, him wishing he could reach over and rub her shoulders until she relaxed.
“Which one is the most frequent?” Marcus asked, Cody should know to see if he could get anything else besides fingerprints off the note.
“This one, it was on my door when I got home from work last night.” She pointed to the least wrinkled and Marcus opened the letter to read it aloud.
“My Dearest Ellie, I am so happy to see you went back to your job at Club Cerulean, it means I can see you out and about again. You looked lovely in your red dress, it makes me want to pin you to a wall and strip you bare. I would bury my face between your boobs and nip and suck until you were crying from pleasure. Then I’d shove my hard cock between those beggin pussy lips and fuck you until you couldn’t see straight. I’d cum in your pussy and get you pregnant with my child. I cannot wait for the day you return my love and come to your senses about us. Your loving mate.” He resisted the urge to crumple the note up and go around town demanding every male shifter come out and tell him the truth about the letter.
“That is awful Eloise, are all of them like that?” Marcus asked instead, trying his best to not growl. His bear was pacing back and forth in his chest roaring to get out and kill whoever thought to say such vulgar things to their mate.
“Some, in the beginning it was just notes about how beautiful I am and how he wanted to take me out for dinner. This one has been the closest to him saying he wanted to rape me,” she replied. Marcus handed the letter to Cody and reached out to take her hand. She gave it willingly, he looked her in the eye and was drawn in by the chocolate orbs.
“Eloise, would you be willing to let me protect you until this stalker is found? He knows where you live, where you work and what kind of car you drive. The sound of this letter worries me, if he has escalated to writing about it, what is to stop him from doing it?” Marcus begged, her eyes widened and Cody added,
“I think you should let him Eloise, he is the best soldier to ever have served under me. Nothing will happen to you while being protected by Marcus. Do you have any idea who is could be?”
“No, I thought Jimmy, but he was in jail while the notes were being left behind. I was stalked by a kid for two years in my home town of Kill Turn Falls, Washington. He wasn’t a shifter though, I talked with my mom this morning and she is going to find out where William is at the moment. She said he moved away; I don’t think it is him either. To be honest, it could be anyone I have come in contact with since the Mate Me events started.” She gave a helpless shrug, and Marcus knew she was wracking her brain, trying to figure out if anyone she’d met lately could be her stalker.
“Do you mind if I send some of my wolf shifters out to check your car and apartment? Maybe the stalker left behind a scent or other evidence,” Cody offered, she nodded and Marcus smiled.
“So will you let Marcus protect you?” Cody asked, Marcus held his breath, he didn’t want to pressure her, but he needed her with him. He needed to know she was safe in his home away from the stalker.
“Yes, I have a week left of work, then two weeks of winter break,” she replied, Marcus winced at the idea of her working, but he didn’t want to disrupt her life more than he already was with moving her into his place.
“Good, we will go back to your apartment, wait for the officers to come out and you can pack enough clothes for two weeks. You will stay at my home and you can use one of my cars, this way your stalker doesn’t know you’ve left your apartment.” He took charge and smiled at her bewildered expression.
“I am staying with you?”
“Yes, we need to get you away from your stalker, if we control where he can see you then we might be able to find out who he is without you getting hurt,” he explained.
“Okay, where is your house?” she asked, and Cody laughed.
“You know the huge home right by the national park?” Cody asked, Marcus glared at him, his home was the perfect size for a large family.
“Yes,” she replied.
“That is Marcus’ home. He had his brothers come out and help him build it,” Cody explained, and Marcus growled.
“I can tell her about my own home thank you. Just see about getting your men out to her apartment.” Marcus took her hand and led her out of the office.
“Wait!” Cody called, Marcus turned around and glared.
“I need her address,” Cody pointed out and Marcus shook his head. He didn’t like Cody trying to impress Eloise for him, he could do it on his own.
“Here,” Eloise slipped a business card out of her wallet and handed it to Cody.
“I used to clean houses before I picked up this job bartending for Club Cerulean,” she explained, when both men looked at the card curiously.
“How many jobs have you held down at one time?” Marcus suddenly asked, he didn’t like the idea of her working so hard she exhausted herself.
“Three, during the school year I teach and bartend, over the summer I tutor, teach summer school, and bartend,” she shared and he growled.
“That sounds exhausting,” Cody remarked. She shrugged and said,
“No more than you being a police officer or Marcus being a bodyguard.” Marcus shook his head at that logic, his job had some long days, but now he sent his men out to do jobs and he mostly handled the paperwork. Working for Rhett had been a favor until he could either hire on more bodyguards or some came off assignment.
“I’ll follow you back to your apartment,” he finally said, he didn’t know what to say to her to let her know she did more work than he or Cody.
“Sure,” she replied, wrapping her scarf around her neck, placing her hat back on her head and slipping her gloves on. Marcus zipped his coat back up and took her hand, he walked her out to her car.
“Thank you,” she whispered, he bent his head to look in her eyes.
“For helping me, you didn’t have to offer protection, come with me to the police station, walk me to my car.” Her eyes were shiny, like she was holding back tears. On impulse he bent down and kissed her cheek.
“I would do anything for you Eloise,” he replied, and walked away to his truck. He wanted so badly to tell her she was his mate, but he felt that would be rushing things a bit. Turning his car on, he followed Eloise to her dingy apartment on the edge of town. His bear growled at the poor living conditions she was forced to live in while trying to make ends meet. He parked his car next to her little car and stepped out, he watched her shivering as she stepped out.