No Contest (Alaskan Sabears #1)(6)

By: Becca Van

“This is my brother, Tarik and his best friend, Hodge Holmes.”

Celeste glanced to Tammy’s other side, the breath in her lungs backing up when it landed on the brown-haired, brown-eyed Hodge. He was a couple of inches shorter than Tammy’s brother but at least a foot taller than her five-foot-seven. He was just as muscular as Tarik, but it was his soulful brown eyes that drew her attention. His gaze was locked with hers, but they seemed to have a faint inner glow. When the urge to reach out to him struck again, she curled her hands into fists to stop herself.

“Hi.” She giggled.

Tarik glanced over to Serge. “Is it okay to get her settled?”

“Yes. I’ll come by in a couple of hours to check on her.”

Tarik moved closer to the bed, her gaze in line with his crotch and she closed her eyes, hoping he hadn’t seen her looking at the bulge in his jeans. Heat suffused her cheeks and even though she tried to stop herself, she giggled again.

“Just relax, baby,” Tarik murmured close to her ear, right before he lifted her up into his arms.

Celeste sighed, inhaling his delectable spicy fragrance and nuzzled her cheek on his chest. Something brushed against her neck and when she heard him take a deep breath she realized he was smelling her. Usually, she would never let a man close enough to touch her, let alone smell her, and though she knew she should take Tarik to task over his advances, she was too tired to care.

“Hey, where are you going?” Tammy asked from somewhere behind her.

“Our place.” Tarik’s deep voice rumbled against her ear sending shivers running up and down her spine.

“Why? Celeste is my friend. Mom and the dads helped me put another bed in my room.”

“We need to keep an eye on her with the concussion.”

“What’s really going on Tarik?”

“We’ll talk about it later, Tammy,” Hodge replied.

“Oh, we sure will,” Tammy huffed.

Celeste wanted to ask what was going on, but she was feeling woozy from the medicine Serge had injected her with. Her tongue felt thick in her mouth and she wasn’t sure she’d be able to speak well enough to make sense.

What surprised her though was how good it felt to be in Tarik’s arms. If she had a choice she would remain where she was forever. He made her feel so warm, feminine, and safe. She hadn’t felt safe for such a long time.

Tears burned her eyes and though she tried to quell them, a couple slipped out from beneath her closed lids and rolled down her cheeks.

“Nearly there, baby. You’ll be fine. We’ll look after you.”

Celeste tried to shake her head but the medication was taking over and she could already feel herself sinking into sleep.

Her last thought before she drifted off was that she wouldn’t be safe until the creepy stalker following her was behind bars.

Hodge stared down at the slumbering beauty in the spare bedroom. Celeste looked familiar but he knew he’d never met her before. There was no way he’d ever forget such a stunningly gorgeous face or sexy body. Her blonde hair was so light it was almost white, but there were strands of gold threaded through her tresses. Even though her pupils had been dilated from her head injury, when she’d had her eyes open he’d been mesmerized by the light sky blue-colored irises. She wasn’t too short, thankfully, standing at about five-six or seven, and though she was slim, she was healthy with curves in all the right places.

She was absolutely fucking perfect in his eyes, even with her hair in disheveled disarray from the plane crash, as well as dirt streaks on her face, arms, and clothes.

He glanced toward the doorway when Tammy stomped into the room, meeting first his gaze and then Tarik’s. They’d been sitting on the edge of the bed staring at her after getting her settled in under the covers in their spare room. He could tell by the scowl on Tammy’s face and the belligerence in her eyes that she was about to let her temper free.

Hodge stood and nodded toward the hallway hoping Tammy would take the hint and hold in her ire until they were out of the bedroom. He didn’t want her disturbing Celeste’s recuperative sleep. Thankfully, she took the hint and led the way to the kitchen. Tarik followed behind him but from the mournful sighs he heard coming from his friend, he wasn’t happy about leaving Celeste alone any more than he was.