Author: Katie Reus
Publisher: Signet Eclipse
7 February 2012
Shaking her head, she started to leave them when a gray wolf cub tumbled past her. “What the …?”
A second later, a female jaguar cub followed hot on his tail. The spotted animal raced past her so quickly, it took a moment for her to digest what she was seeing. Ana turned and started after them, to find Ryan scooping them up, one in each hand.
“What the hell is going on?” She hadn’t meant to shout but the words flew out.
The few horses whinnied nervously. By now they were used to wolves, but the scent of a jaguar was something else entirely. A new predator – tiny as she was – would take some getting used to.
Both cubs buried their faces against Ryan’s neck. He grinned and held out the tiny jaguar. “This is Vivian.” She tried to scramble away but he held her tight. Then he held out the gray wolf, who attempted to wiggle out of Ryan’s hand. “And this is Lucas.”
Her heart instantly warmed at the sight of the two cubs. Even the jaguar. It had been a long time since their family had any little ones running around. Most of her packmates were younger than her and weren’t interested in settling down yet. And all the pregnant shifters, with the exception of her mother, had died from the poisoning. Almost on cue, an ache sparked in her chest at the thought of her mother dying from a broken heart, unable to live without her mate. But Ana pushed past the pain as she eyed the little ones. Seeing them somehow made the ache inside her easier. Life was treasured among her kind and, well, the cubs were totally adorable. “This might sound like an obvious question, but who are they and where did they come from?”
“Uh…” Ryan looked down and for the first time since she’d met him, he seemed uncomfortable. His neck turned a dark shade of red.
Behind Ana, Teresa chuckled at his obvious discomfort, which earned her a glare from Ryan.
Okay, if he wasn’t going to answer, she’d try another tactic. “Were they with you guys the other night in the woods?”
He shrugged and the jaguar tried to burrow deeper against his neck. “Sort of.”
“That’s not an answer,” she said through gritted teeth.
“I think you should talk to Connor about this.”