I pack up my bag and stand up from the café table. I slip on my grey hoodie then say goodbye to the owner, Layla, and her daughters, Rhiannon and Sophia, before leaving. Outside, the fall air is chilly and the trees are bare. It's almost Halloween.
Around this time of year, I would be spending time at my parents' house in the mountains. We would go hunting and meet with other members of the pack. That all ended seven months ago when my mom and dad were murdered by a family friend, leaving me and my sister alone in this world. I was left everything they owned, but the house where I grew up was remodeled and sold in auction. Afterward, I moved in with my boyfriend at the time and found a job within the pack babysitting the pups.
I walk the short distance to my small cabin at the edge of town near the woods and mountains. When I arrive at my front steps, I see Beta Lennon standing there. Beta Lennon is very tall and muscular with blonde hair and green eyes. He is also the alpha's cousin and right-hand man. I slow down my pace and stop once I'm behind him.
"Hi. Can I help you?" I ask him. He turns around at the sound of my voice.
"Are you Lara Henderson?" He asks, his voice deep and intimidating.
"Yes. What can I help you with?"
"Alpha Maddox wants to see you," he declares.
"May I ask why?"
"Personal matters. He said it was urgent."
This is probably my worst nightmare. Alpha Maddox isn't the nicest of people. He is known for his brutality and ruthlessness. He has made our pack the most feared just like his father, Reece. Most people just stay out of Alpha Maddox's way. I've never actually met him, but I know it won't be cupcakes and rainbows.
What personal matters would he need to discuss with me?
"Come with me." Lennon's voice breaks through my thoughts. He walks past me and motions for me to follow. I groan and reluctantly do as I'm told. When we arrive at the pack house, Lennon escorts me to Alpha Maddox's office door before wishing me luck and escaping to his own office.
I knock on the door, hesitant. A moment later, I hear, "Come in."
I open the door and walk in slowly, the scent of pine and morning dew invading my senses. There is a man standing at a window at the back of the room, staring out into the woods. He doesn't turn around when I enter but instead asks who it is.
"I'm Lara Henderson. Beta Lennon said you were expecting me," I respond quietly. He still doesn't turn around.
"Oh. Yes, of course. Sit down," he commands. I do as he says and take a seat at his desk. Alpha Maddox finally turns around to face me and I feel my breath catch. He's gorgeous. Black hair he has most likely run his fingers through, perfect cheekbones and a strong jaw make up his face. I also notice there is a scar that runs through his right eyebrow. He's wearing a black dress shirt and pants. His matching jacket rests on a coat rack by the door.
And his arms.
His arms are completely covered in tattoos that disappear into the sleeves of his dress shirt. I also see tattoos inked across his chest through the open collar. I don't meet his eyes and keep my head lowered as he walks towards me.
"Look at me," his deep voice commands. Due to him being Alpha, I have no choice but to obey. I raise my head and meet his gaze. His eyes are the prettiest blue known to man and God. Soon, the blue of his eyes is gone and has been replaced with green, meaning his wolf has surfaced.
"I knew it. I f*****g knew it," he growls.
Holy crap on a cracker.
And Alpha Maddox is staring at me like I'm his prey.
The next thing I know, I'm pulled out of the chair and placed on his desk. His hands cup my butt roughly and I gasp. He thrusts his tongue into my mouth, delves his fingers in my thick hair and tugs. I can feel his hard member against my stomach. He sucks my tongue into his mouth and my mind swims.
His lips eventually end up along my neck and his teeth are sinking into me. I've never been kissed like this. Let alone been felt up and marked by someone I barely know.
At the thought, I push at Alpha Maddox's shoulders and he pecks my lips one last time before detaching himself from me completely. He stands beside but doesn't touch me. I take a stand from the desk and fix my clothing before escaping to the door.
"And where exactly do you think you're goin'?" Alpha Maddox asks in a teasing tone with a smirk beautifully etched on his face, making me want another kiss from him.
What is wrong with me?
I turn to face him.
"Home," I reply seriously. His smile fades and is replaced with a snarl.
"No," he growls, making me shiver in discomfort. I've never experienced such raw intensity from someone. It's intimidating and a little scary.
Maybe a lot.
I know I'm shy, but this man makes me want to climb under a rock and never return to civilization ever again. I now see why people fear this man. As he makes his way towards me, I can feel my heart beating violently, almost like it's about to emerge from my chest.
Before I can blink, Alpha Maddox's tattooed arms are beside my head, keeping the door closed. Then, his face is just inches from my own and I can feel his warm breath on my lips.
"You are not going anywhere," he whispers, his tone sinister.
"Please. This was a mistake, you're scaring me and my neck hurts," I reply, desperate to get away from him. Once my words click, his eyes drop to my neck where his canines were a few minutes ago. His face gentles and his eyes connect with mine once again.
"I'm so sorry. Are you okay?" He asks, concerned, his voice now soft.
"Not really," I reply, my voice small.
"Let me clean the wound for you. It's the least I could do."
"I have to go."
With those parting words, I throw open the door quickly before running through the pack house. Once I'm outside, I try to catch my breath and let the butterflies in my stomach subside.
How did my day change so quickly?
* * *
Alpha Maddox Teller-
I watch as she runs down the hall from my office and curse myself for letting her get away that easily. Lennon emerges from his office with a curious look etched on his face. He must have heard the commotion from Lara's quick escape.
"Was she your mate?" He questions.
"Yes. I need you to round up our best trackers and locate her. I want her brought to my place once she's been found. She is to be unharmed and anything short of my demands is unacceptable," I order him.
I need to find her.