Title: Another Secret
Author: Stevie Woods
Publisher: Torquere Press
Release Date: 8/3/16
Heat Level: 5
Length: 14,350 words
Genre:Gay Romance, Erotic Romance, Paranormal Romance
After yet another bad dream, Leland accepts he can no longer keep his secret; the time had come to confess all to his best friend, Drew. He sets out early in the morning, determined yet fearful of Drew’s reaction to what he must tell him. Leland has loved Drew ever since they were teenagers and together they experimented with their sexuality, but Drew has only ever been his best friend. He dreads maybe even losing that when Drew learns the truth.
However, when halfway through the forest to Drew’s home, Leland is forced to take cover when he sees a large grey wolf tailing another man. His concern turns to shock when the man abruptly shifts to become a wolf and attacks the grey wolf.
The fight is swift and bloody and ends when the man-wolf runs off. Leland gets his second shock of the morning when the grey wolf abruptly shifts to become human. To become Drew. Too surprised to do more than watch as his now very naked best friend rushes off, Leland is in for yet another surprise when he finally confronts Drew later that morning.
Perhaps fate had decided enough was enough and given him that proverbial kick up the backside, letting him know it was time to tell Drew everything. He sighed. It was the last thing he wanted, but the time had come; he could put it off no longer.
He was just about to step out into a small clearing when he saw it—a large grey wolf, so dark as to be almost black. It was a beautiful specimen. Leland kept very still, not wanting to draw the animal’s attention. It looked as if the wolf was already trailing something by the way it was behaving. Even as he watched, the wolf sniffed the air and quickened its pace. Apparently, it had found its prey. As Leland slipped back behind the tree, shock slid through him as he spied the wolf’s target. It was a man.
Leland was of two minds what to do. His immediate reaction was to shout a warning, but that could induce the wolf to attack sooner. Cursing himself for being a fool, Leland ran as quietly and swiftly as he could around the clearing toward the unsuspecting victim. Sliding to a halt behind a large tree, Leland saw the wolf lowering itself, as if getting set to spring. Leland opened his mouth to yell a warning, but the man was not as unaware as Leland assumed. The man spun to face the wolf, snarling and growling as he tore the clothes from his body. Leland, his mouth still hanging open, watched in total shock.
Almost too fast for Leland to follow, the man’s form shifted and changed. From two feet, he dropped to all fours, fingers and toes becoming sharp claws. Pale skin sprouted dark brown fur as his face elongated and his teeth became sharp points frothed with saliva.
The two wolves leapt at each other, meeting mid-flight to clash and fall to the earth, landing on steady feet, teeth bared as they snarled at each other. They circled, gazes locked, until they charged again.
Leland gripped the tree so tightly the bark dug into his palms as he watched the two animals fight it out. He was battling the urge to run for safety, not sure if the wolves would break apart and come after him instead. His body was telling him to stay where he was, hopefully well and truly hidden, but his brain was debating how safe it would be when one of the animals won and sensed a new victim nearby. Even though he knew one of them was, in fact, a man who had changed—shifted?—into a wolf, Leland found it hard to think of it as anything but an animal. He certainly wasn’t behaving like a human as he bit and tore at the other wolf’s hide. Leland also wondered what sort of condition the man-wolf would be in, assuming he survived the fight. His body was already streaked with blood from the attack.
It appeared the two wolves were well matched; neither seemed able to gain the upper hand in the battle. The dark grey wolf suddenly leapt and landed hard on the man-wolf’s back and he let out a howl, which soon turned into a snarl as he fought his way from beneath the dark grey animal. With a snap of his jaws and a growl, the man-wolf turned and ran for the cover of the trees opposite where Leland was hiding. The dark grey wolf tensed, as if to follow, before it limped a few steps back, eyes constantly searching the surrounding trees to ensure the other wolf didn’t return. After a few minutes, the wolf sat on its haunches and began to lick at its wounds.
Leland allowed himself to relax a little, deciding it was best he stay where he was. He was pretty sure the wolf would sneak off to its den as soon as the animal felt secure enough to move on. He kept a close eye on it, not allowing his caution to slide, though after a minute or so, he did wonder if perhaps he was more shocked than he’d thought or if maybe he was more tired than he’d realized and his vision was affected. He couldn’t be seeing what he thought; he couldn’t!
But as he watched Drew Horton climb to his feet from where a second ago a dark grey wolf had sat, still rubbing at the long gash on his thigh, Leland could no longer refute what his eyes were showing him
STEVIE WOODS is a Brit living in the Northwest of England who has left her day job behind – though it’s a quandary that there still doesn’t seem to be much more free time in her day!
A long time avid reader of romance with a dash of adventure, Stevie only stumbled over ‘slash’ pairings a few years ago and was an immediate convert. Having dabbled with writing on and off for years, it wasn’t long before Stevie was tapping away on the keyboard inventing stories around two hot guys, gaining her first publication in the summer of 2007.
Stevie likes reading stories with a good strong plot and believable characters and does her best to create them in her own work.
Stevie has a soft spot for Historical settings but also thoroughly enjoys SF and Fantasy, Paranormal and Contemporary, finding the similarities as intriguing as the differences. Stevie already has a variety of novels, novellas and short stories released by Phaze Books, MLR Press and Torquere Press.
Stevie is happy to hear from her readers via her website: http://www.steviewoods.com
She can also be reached via:
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