The Mating Game: Big Bad Wolf(10)By: Georgette St. Clair
As the vendor began putting their hot dogs into buns, a woman rushed up holding a notepad and pen. “Oh, I just love you. Can I have your autograph?” she gushed.
“I’m on a date,” Ryker grumbled, and signed quickly, an illegible scrawl.
By the time they vender had handed over their hot dogs,there were half a dozen people gathered around them.
They walked through the park, with the people trailing along behind them. The crowd looked as if they wanted to approach, but Ryker scared them off by spinning around and raking them with a ferocious scowl.
Daisy took a bite of hot dog, and a dozen flash bulbs went off. She chewed and swallowed quickly, annoyed.
“You have mustard on your face,” Ryker said. “Don’t worry, though – yellow is definitely your color.” He quickly wiped it off with a paper napkin. More flashbulbs went off. Daisy stared down at her hot dog with dismay.
“Mouth full of food is not my best look,” she said.
“This is ridiculous,” Ryker groaned. Then he got a wicked look in his eye. “Do you trust me?”
“Not in the slightest,” she said promptly. “Why?”
“Are you willing to at least trust my driving?”
“I guess?” She glanced doubtfully at his little red sports car. She knew guys liked their flashy sports cars, but driving in a tiny piece of tinfoil on wheels made her nervous. How did Ryker even fit in that damn thing?
Then she shrugged. “I mean, I’m a shifter. I’m pretty hard to kill, unless you go right off the edge of a very high cliff.”
“Your confidence fills my heart with joy,” he said. “Lucky there’s no cliffs in this area.”
They got into his car and drove off quickly, tearing through the streets, squealing on two tires as they rounded sharp corners, racing through yellow lights. One by one the paparazzi began dropping off.
Her phone rang as she drove. It was her roommate Larissa, making their pre-arranged call.
“Cadence is having an allergic reaction,” Larissa said. That was their code phrase. It gave Daisy an excuse to drop everything and rush home if the date was going badly.
“I’m sure she’ll be fine,” Daisy said, which meant that Daisy didn’t need to be rescued.
“Does she need us to come kick some ass or not?” Cadence yelled in the background. “Because if not, it’s ladies night at the Thirsty Iguana and I’m gonna miss the two for one drink special.”
“No asses need to be kicked tonight, thank you,” Daisy said, as Ryker gave her a puzzled look.
“So?” Larissa said. “How is the date going tonight? My dating life is a vast, arid desert this week. Let me live vicariously through you.”
“It’s…” She glanced over at Ryker. “Indescribable.”
“Indescribable?” Larissa said suspiciously. “That doesn’t sound good. What do you mean by that?”
“I don’t know yet. I’ll tell you when I do. Don’t wait up.” She hung up the phone.
“So, an allergy attack. That’s original.” Ryker grinned.
“Eavesdropper.” She smiled back.
“Shifter hearing,” he said. “Can’t help myself.”
A short while later they pulled up in front of an enormous neo-modern house in the city’s exclusive Greenwood Heights neighborhood. It had an asymmetrical angled roof, floor to ceiling windows with a dark tint, and a white-washed concrete exterior. The hedges in front of it were severely clipped into twisty corkscrew shapes.
He pulled into his garage and parked, quickly shutting the garage door.
“I’ll drive you back to get your car tomorrow morning. I hope you don’t mind getting up early – I have to take the investors on a tour of our factory.”
“That’s fine. I volunteered to help clean up the school playground tomorrow morning,” she said.
“What do you do at the school?” Ryker held open the door to the house and gestured for her to walk through. “See, I can be a gentleman.”
“I’m a teacher. Middle school English and history.”
“So you work at some fancy prep school?”
“Oh, it’s fancy all right.” So fancy that there were metal detectors in the doorways and bars on the windows. It was a culture shock that Daisy still struggled to adjust to every day.