Charmed Wolf(10)By: Lia Davis
She’d just placed a foot on the first step of the porch when Edwin’s scent hit her. Letting out a fierce growl, she whirled to her left—the direction his scent was the strongest. The bastard stepped out of the line of trees and smiled at her. Anger tightened in her gut. “What do you want?”
He stalked closer with one brow raised. “You know why I’m here.”
“Do I?” She played coy. The asshat needed to learn whom he was dealing with. Dana didn’t play games like Darin did. She was far too impatient.
“You are harboring a rogue, and I want him turned over to me for punishment for his crimes.”
Crimes? As in more than one? She made a mental note to ask Cooper about all of his “roguish” activity later. However, Edwin’s arrogance and the growl in his tone told her she’d struck a nerve. Good. “He was protecting his child. It was justified.”
Dana turned to go inside the house and ran into Cooper. Fucking wolf stood too close to her. Just as she moved to walk around Cooper, Edwin said, “He stole the child from my deceased mate.”
She flicked a glare at Cooper, searching for some kind of truth to Edwin’s claims. After all, Edwin would say just about anything to get under her skin. Knowing the rogue Alpha, he’d scent Cooper on her and draw his own conclusions. Edwin would use every advantage he’d could, including making threats against her mate.
Cooper’s jaw worked, and he glared at Edwin over her shoulder. “You killed Hope’s mother and then ordered your enforcers to lock the girl up.”
The truth in Cooper’s words reached out to her. Fury exploded inside her, and she pivoted on her heels, coming nose-to-nose with Edwin in seconds. She didn’t bother to contain the power she usually kept hidden deep within. If she were going to challenge the Alpha, she would give him a little taste of the ass-whooping that was coming to him. “You ordered her to death, so I claimed her! She is mine.” The last word was spoken on a growl, like her wolf had spoken it. “You have no further business here.”
Edwin narrowed his eyes, but she smelled the fear he tried to swallow. Then his gaze flicked to Cooper beside her. “He is a fugitive. He killed two of my enforcers and the council will hear about it.”
Damn the Alpha for pulling rank. Edwin was right. Cooper was considered a rogue now, even though he’d been protecting Hope and his sister. According to Pack law, she had to turn Cooper over. Yet, Dana wasn’t an Alpha, and they were on neutral ground.
“I challenge you for your Alpha power and your Pack. If I lose, you can have him.” Dana turned, grabbed Cooper’s hand, and tugged him to the house. “See you in forty-eight hours.”
Edwin let out a growl. “Where?”
She glanced over her shoulder. “The Bloodrose Creek Pack circle, of course.”
“You can’t use me as collateral for the challenge.”
Dana slammed the door behind them and rolled her eyes. “I don’t plan on losing. Edwin needs to be taken out, and I need my own Pack.”
“That solves everything. Yet explains nothing.” Cooper threw his hands up and closed the distance between them. He skimmed his knuckles down her cheek, sending hot need straight to her pussy. His nostrils flared as if he knew just how deeply he affected her. “You make it hard to stand by you when you push me away.”
She shook her head while watching his mouth. “I need to take over his Pack.”
Cooper leaned in and nipped her ear lobe. She whimpered as he whispered, “So you said. Why?”
Closing her eyes, she flattened her palms on his chest but couldn’t push him back. Her body begged to let this male touch her. “The wolves in Bloodrose Creek deserve a happy, healthy life. To be free of a rogue Alpha.”
“Why do I sense that there is another reason?” When she remained silent, he lifted her chin to meet his stare.
She closed her eyes and sighed. “The power you sense in me is growing. If I don’t do something to balance it, I fear it will consume me and turn me rogue.”
There, she’d said it. Something she couldn’t tell her brother, even though she bet he already knew her fears. Saying them out loud made them all too real. She sagged into Cooper. Instantly, he wrapped her up in his large arms and held her.