Defended by a Jaguar (Mate Me book 4)

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Chapter 36

Another week went by with no sign of Scott. Georgia was starting to wonder if he hadn’t found someone to help him with his drug addiction and forgot about Daisy. She prayed this was the case and he would be re-incarcerated again. Today she was talking with Caroline about the wedding set up outside. The two were standing in the back of the inn with a chart in front of them.

“I think we put all the chairs along here,” Georgia explained, walking to the place she felt the chairs would look best.

“Okay, and the archway can be placed here. Preston offered to make it for us. We will have to put the flowers on it on the morning of the wedding. Roxie, Ellie, and I will do that,” Caroline replied, standing where the arch would be placed.

“Okay, then do we want a runner for the aisle or should we leave it grass?” she asked, turning in circles trying to envision her wedding.

“No. Too many people will trip.” Caroline shook her head, marking spots on her chart for chairs and the arch.

“Okay. Then we send everyone inside for a cocktail hour while we get pictures taken. Do you know a photographer who could get us in at the last minute?” Georgia had only lived in the area for six months and didn’t know everyone like Caroline.

“Yes. Evvy has a friend Terese who moved into town and is looking for work. She has done family photoshoots for Evvy, Roxie, Ellie, and Josie. They came out amazingly perfect!” Caroline gushed, Georgia laughed at her sister.

“Then I know she will do a wonderful job for Jordan and me. I want a family picture of us with Daisy. She picked out her flower girl dress. You should see the thing. It is the perfect poofy princess dress and in her favorite color of bubblegum pink.

“Haha, of course, she would pick that out. She is such a funny little girl. For having Jordan and you as parents she is a complete princess.”

“What do you mean?” Georgia asked, smiling at her sister.

“You know what I mean. You have never been the girly type. If you can you avoid wearing dresses and makeup any chance you get. You prefer to be locked away in your office typing away on your computer than getting pedicures with me.” Georgia let out a laugh and shook her head.

“I never understood yours and Ginny’s need to have your toes painted in the winter. No one can see them,” she replied teasing her sister.

“I still have to look at them. They are also the only time I get a moment to myself,” Caroline shared, Georgia nodded her understanding.

“I feel you there. The only alone time I get these days is when Daisy is at daycare. Most of the time she is playing in my office while I try to work. I’ve given up working on the weekends until she goes to sleep. Jordan tries to get her to play with him so I can do some work, but she refuses.”

“You are her mom now. She hasn’t had a mom in two years, she wants your attention,” Caroline pointed out and Georgia smiled.

“Who thought I’d become a mom. I know our parents were shocked when I told them I was getting married next weekend. Mom even made a comment that she fully expected me to become an old maid with no children. She is ecstatic to be getting another granddaughter without having to wait.”

“I bet.”

“I invited Preston to the wedding,” Georgia blurted out, Caroline turned around to give her a shocked look.

“Georgia!”

“You two are mates! I cannot believe you are still fighting this. Liam dove into Preston’s arms the time Scott showed up. He loved Preston.” Georgia took her sister’s hands in her own.

“I can’t have another mate,” Caroline argued, Georgia watched tears gather in her eyes.

“Caroline. You deserve to be happy. Jonas wouldn’t be angry, he’d want you to be happy. He’d want Liam to have a father figure in his life. Promise me you won’t push Preston away just because you are afraid. Preston isn’t military, he won’t be leaving you alone with Liam. I can see it in his eyes, every time you two are around each other there is sexual tension in the room you could cut with a knife. Be happy, please,” Georgia begged, looking in her sister’s eyes. Caroline deflated and shrugged.

“I’ve been alone for three years, really more than that. Jonas met Liam once before he was called back on another tour. That is where he died. He went back and a week later I was visited by an officer from his troop who’d been sent home. I’m trying to find peace with everything that happened to Jonas,” Caroline shared sitting on the edge of the porch. Georgia sat with her.

“I know, but don’t let Preston get away. Give him a chance.” Georgia squeezed her sister’s shoulders.

“I’ll think about it. Want lemonade?” she asked, changing the subject.

“Sure.” Caroline stood and went inside to get the lemonade. While she was gone Georgia took another look around the backyard. This would be a beautiful wedding.

“What no invitation for me?” a slimy voice said behind her. Georgia whirled around to come face to face with a smaller version of Jordan. He had the same green eyes, but his were bloodshot. His bones were visible in his arms. Jordan looked much healthier than this man.

“Scott I presume?” she asked, trying to get her frantically beating heart under control.

“Georgia then?” he asked, she nodded making sure to maintain space between the two of them. Scott wore clothing too big for his emancipated frame. It looked like he’d jumped right back into using drugs if the marks on his arm were any indication.

“Go away before Greyson comes out here and gets you,” she ordered, Greyson hadn’t come with her, she told Jordan she didn’t need him when she would be with Caroline and then come back home.

“I know you don’t have your little bodyguard. I’ve been following you and my daughter around for weeks. I saw you leave on your own,” Scott countered a sneer on his face.

“You are violating your restraining order.” Georgia clasped her hands behind her back praying the shakes would stop.

“I don’t care about that. My parole officer has already told me I will be headed back to jail. Why not do something I want before I go back?” Scott shrugged, stalking down the backyard to where she was standing.

“Why can’t you get clean for Daisy? You told Jordan you wanted her, but you aren’t doing anything to show you do. I can tell you are still high off whatever drugs you put in your system. That girl has a man who loves her like his own. Just leave her alone,” Georgia begged, hoping she could talk some sense into him.

“Jordan ruined my life years ago when you beat me up as a teenager. I want to make him hurt as he did me. My jaguar refused to shift for a year after Jordan handed my ass to me.” Scott growled at her, she could see he was starting to lose control of his jaguar. His fingers were now claws.

“Georgia do you want ice?” Caroline asked coming out to the porch before Georgia could warn her about Scott he shifted and ran into the trees. She wondered what spooked him until she heard,

“Caroline I brought the arch.” Preston walked around the outside of the inn. Georgia collapsed onto the porch causing her sister to drop the lemonade spilling it everywhere.

“What happened?” Caroline demanded, taking her shaking hands. Preston hurried over to the women and knelt at Georgia’s feet.

“Scott,” she whispered pointing to the trees. Preston shifted his clothes ripping as his tiger sprang forward.

“What happened?” Caroline asked again, hugging Georgia.

“He came to tell me he wanted to take something from Jordan. He is angry because when he and Jordan were young Jordan beat the crap out of him. Jordan shared the story with me the other day. Scott came home in a rage over being thrown out of college because his drug use was out of control.” Georgia leaned her head on Caroline’s shoulder trying to calm her racing heart.

“He is gone,” Preston announced coming from his truck, he’d put on a fresh pair of clothes.

“Did he take off in a truck?” Georgia asked looking up at the man who’d captivated her sister’s attention.

“Yes. There was oil left behind. Why are you here without Greyson?” Preston asked, looking around for the lion shifter.

“We hadn’t seen Scott for weeks. I thought it would be safe enough for me to visit my sister at her home,” Georgia explained shaking her head.

“From now on, go nowhere without someone who can shift. He is a drugged-up shifter, they are the most dangerous. It takes almost double the amount of drugs to get high,” Preston explained. Georgia sighed, this was too much.

“I’ll go home and tell Jordan what happened. I want you to stay here with Caroline in case he decides to come back and terrorize others,” she announced standing on her shaky legs.

“Are you sure?” Caroline asked Georgia nodded.

“I don’t want to freak out Daisy and Jordan is home with her. I will talk to him after Daisy goes to bed,” she explained, trying not to worry them more.

“Text me when you get home,” Caroline ordered, Georgia gave her a shaky smile and nodded.

“See you on the big day.” Kissing her sister on the cheek Georgia left to head home. The drive home she used it to calm her body. She didn’t want to alert Jordan to anything being wrong. She would tell him that night about Scott coming to see her. Opening the door to her car she heard Daisy’s shriek of happiness from their backyard. She wanted to be outside on the playset all the time now. Georgia put a smile on her face and went through the house setting her keys down. Walking outside into her backyard she saw Jordan and Daisy running around the backyard, Jordan was shifted as his jaguar. His animal was golden brown with black spots. Leaning against the pillar on her back porch she watched them play.

Jordan would pounce and Daisy would run out of the place where she’d been hiding. It took Daisy ten minutes to notice Georgia watching from the porch.

“Save me!” she cried and dove behind Georgia. Jordan’s jaguar turned his head and purred. He padded over to her and bumped her hand with his head. Taking the hint she rubbed her hand over his head and behind his ears. His purrs became louder until he pushed her down onto her bottom. He placed his head in her lap and waited for her to continue to rub him.

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