To celebrate the re release I'm giving away two copies of the book in either mobi, epub or PDF format. Simply comment and you will go into the draw. The winners will be announced on Thursday.
I hope you all enjoy the additions I made to the story.
Blurb:Jason Matthew's is a broken man. He's lived through hell and barely come out the other side. All he can thing about is getting to his best friend, Brian, after that he has no idea. Jason's scared out of his mind when he's met by not only Brian but two large men as well, he does the only thing he can think to do. He tries to run. One of the men, though, turns out to be his mate. A mate he is in no condition to have or want, a mate that won't allow him to flee.
Alex Holland is forced to stand by and watch as Jason is taken to the safest place they know, too scared to be around him. He knows something bad has happened to Jason and he's going to need every ounce of his Alpha control to give his mate the time he needs to heal and start living again.
NOTE: DM has been re-edited, and expanded by about 19 K.
Jason sat in his idling car on the side of the road staring at the sign in front of him. Welcome to Leyburn. Population 8653. How had his life managed to turn upside down in so short a time? Jason had been sitting here for so long the tightness in the muscles of his healing body reminded him of that fateful night not even a week ago, causing him to cringe in pain. Thanks to his werewolf genetics, most of the bruises and cuts had healed while he was on the road. Jason knew it would take a lot more than the fading of his bruises for him to be able to live any kind of normal life again, and he hoped coming here was the first step.
Brian had sounded so happy in his new life when he'd talked to him, and Jason hoped his friend might be able to help him heal. Jason missed his friend and could really use his help at the moment.
Running his shaking hands through his hair, Jason tried to pull himself together enough to make the phone call he knew he had to. Taking a deep breath, he picked up his phone and hit the button for Brian's speed dial. Jason listened as the phone rang in his ear.
"Jase. How are ya, man?" came the voice of his best friend as soon as the phone connected.
"Bri." Jason couldn't get anything else to come out of his mouth. He knew Brian would start to worry if he didn't pull himself together soon.
"Hey, what's wrong? You okay?" Brian knew him so well. Even after not seeing each other for weeks, he could tell when there was something wrong with Jason. Jason quickly gathered his nerves and plunged on with the reason for his call.
"Yeah, man, I'm okay. Hey, look, is that offer to visit still open?" Jason asked. He knew it was a lot to ask, but he had nowhere else to go.
"Hang on. I'll just make sure it's okay with the guys." Fuck. Jason had forgotten that Brian was living with Marcus and his three brothers. He started to shake, thinking about being around so many men. Jason could hear Brian's muffled voice in the background talking to the other guys. What seemed like forever later, Brian came back to him. "Sure, man. When can you be here?"
"Umm. I'm sort of at the town limits now," Jason replied hesitantly.
"What! Shit, Jase, what the hell happened?" Brian was going to flip when he found out, and Jason wasn't really ready to talk about everything that had happened to him yet. Maybe he never would be, at the moment he felt broken and damaged and what he wanted to do most in the world at that moment was curl in a ball and cry, but he knew he couldn't do that yet.
"I'll tell you when I get there." He knew it probably wasn't what Brian wanted to hear, but it was all he could do for now; he was already on the verge of tears, and it took everything he had not to break down.
"Okay," Brian replied. After Brian had given him the directions on how to get to his and Marcus's place, Jason hung up. Taking deep breaths, he could feel the tears start to gather in the corner of his eyes.
"Shit! Get it together, man. You can fall apart later." Jason sat there on the side of the road, trying to gather his courage to start the short drive that would take him to his best friend. The tears came anyway.
Five minutes later, finally ready to head out, he wiped his face to try and remove all evidence of his crying. Jason knew he probably wasn't completely successful but that couldn't be helped. He needed to get on the road and get to Brian, everything else would have to wait until then. Jason clicked his indicator on and pulled out onto the road.
Driving through the centre of town, Jason thought it looked to be a nice little place. He made note of a couple of the shops lining the main road. The local supermarket looked to be a decent size. There was a kids' arcade that was filled with teenagers, as it was the weekend, and what looked to be a tattoo parlour with the words 'Eternal Ink' in flowing script across the top of the building.
Jason followed the directions Brian had given, and less than ten minutes later, he pulled to a stop outside the address he'd written down. Jason double-checked the paper to make sure he was at the right place. The house was huge, two stories. Jason thought it couldn't have been more than a couple of years old as the place still had that newly built look about it. The walls were painted a light cream colour with a deep blue trim running the length of the roof. There was a dark chestnut door with what looked to be a frosted glass centrepiece, allowing the afternoon light through but still maintaining privacy.
Taking a deep breath to settle his raging nerves, Jason got out of the car. As soon as he closed the door, he looked up and saw Brian standing in the doorway leading into the house. Jason didn't know what came over him, but at the sight of his best friend, he started running towards him. Brian engulfed him in his arms and gave Jason the hug he so desperately needed. He held his best friend in his arms, the familiar, safe scent settling his body. Jason broke down in tears. He knew Brian was worried about him and would have questions, but he just couldn't pull himself together.
Brian tightened his hold on him and whispered in his ear, "Shhh, Jase. It's going to be okay. Whatever the problem is, we can get through it together."
Jason couldn't reply. A lump had found its way into his throat and had decided to take up permanent residence there. This. He had needed this, for just a moment Jason could forget about what had happened knowing he was finally safe with Brian, his friend would never let anything happen to him. He just needed to hold his friend. Eventually, the sound of twin growls broke through the fog in his brain, and he started to pull back.
Brian looked back towards to house. "Marcus, cut it out. You know I love you. This is my best friend, Jason. Now give it a rest."
"I know you love me," Marcus said, "but could you please loosen your hold on your friend? I don't want to hurt him, and my wolf doesn't like the sight of you in another man's arms."
Jason pulled back and looked at his friend. Brian gave him an apologetic look, and Jason smiled at him to let him know it was okay.
"Jason, this big brute here is my obviously overprotective mate, Marcus."
Jason noticed Marcus had stopped growling almost as soon as he had let go of his friend. He smiled at Brian's description of his mate and turned to say hello when he realised he could still hear someone else growling.
Brian rolled his eyes. "And the even bigger guy behind him is his elder brother and the Leyburn pack Alpha, Alex. Alex, what's your problem?"
When Alex didn't respond, Jason glanced towards the man and gaped at the sheer size of him. Jason was not comfortable around big men after what he'd been through, and this guy was huge. Coming in at five foot six, Jason was short by werewolf standards, and anyone over six feet looked huge to him. This guy must have been at least six foot five.
Jason instinctively shrank bank, not wanting to get hurt again. He'd been thought hell once already; a second time would more than likely kill him. His brain was telling him to run; telling him he couldn't do this, he couldn't be here. Jason hadn't realised just how big Brian's mate was, and he'd completely forgotten he lived with his mate's brothers when he'd set out wanting to get Brian.
Brian must have noticed his reaction and reached out to touch him, even knowing it was his friend, Jason still shied away from the touch. He couldn't help it; his body seemed to be reacting automatically without any input from him.
Brian frowned. "Jason? It's okay, no one is going to hurt you."
"What the fuck?" the angry outburst from Alex caused a whimper to escape Jason.
"Back the fuck off, Alex," Jason heard his friend tell the much larger man. He wanted to reach out and grab Brian and make a run for it, but he didn't want Brain to get hurt because of him. His body refused to cooperate.
Jason tried to get his emotions under control and took a deep breath. This didn't help at all, as the most stunning scent he'd ever come across hit him. It was wild and masculine with a slight hint of sandalwood. Jason's eyes widened as realization hit. No, no, no, no, no… This couldn't be happening to him. Why did he have to meet his mate now, and why in god's name did fate have to match him with someone so large? Jason didn't know what to do. He knew he couldn't deal with being mated to someone so big after what he'd gone through, so he did the only thing that made sense to him.
He turned and ran.