Author Charlie Richards

Giving love and imagination free reign


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Checks, Balances, & Manipulation

Wolves of Stone Ridge: Book Forty-Eight

Out of the Cage: A man with a sordid past that comes back to bite him must decide how to protect those he loves.

Jared Templeton has been mated to his wolf shifter, Carson Angeni, for over a decade. Having spent the first half of his adult life as a high-paid assassin, Jared thought he'd struck a decent balance with pack life. Everything changes when their beta takes a position on the Shifter Council. That forces Alpha Declan to hold a challenge for a new Stone Ridge pack beta, which draws in unfamiliar wolves. The way one of the contestants--Larson--watches Jared arouses his suspicions, but he tells himself he's being paranoid. Jared wasn't being paranoid, and Declan's daughter Sara is kidnapped. Even though they manage to save her, Jared still blames himself and acts rashly in an attempt to catch the culprits. His choice puts not only him but Carson in a tight spot with their alpha and a few others in the pack. Will Jared remember that pack is there for each other and aren't just people to protect? Or will Jared's past catching up with him create too big a wedge to overcome?

Excerpt - Checks, Balances, & Manipulation

The excerpt below contain explicit adult language and sexual content.

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    Jared Templeton heard the snick of the back door, but he didn’t bother to turn. He knew who it would be. The sound of Carson Angeni’s voice almost made him smile—almost.

“Jared, what are you doing out here?”

Turning his head, Jared peered at his lover of over a decade. “Just enjoying the evening breeze.” Knowing with Carson’s wolf shifter senses—which allowed him to scent out truths, half-truths, and lies—Jared added, “And thinking.”

Carson wrapped his arms around Jared. Resting his right hand on his chest, he rubbed lighting over his t-shirt-clad pectorals. He slid his left hand under the hem and scraped lightly along the lines of Jared’s six-pack abdominals.

Letting out a deep sigh, Jared relaxed in Carson’s hold. He tipped his head, enjoying the way his lover skimmed his lips along the tendons of his neck. The hairs on his nape stood on end, but in a good way.

Until meeting Carson and bonding with his wolf shifter, that had never happened to Jared before…and he’d certainly never allowed anyone at his back.

“What are you thinking about, love?” Carson crooned softly, his words causing warm puffs of air to tease Jared’s flesh. “Something causing too much tension in your shoulders, I’d wager.”

Jared let out a deep sigh as he brought the glass he held to his lips. Searching his mind for an acceptable answer, he took a deep drink. The bittersweet chocolatey taste flowed over his tongue. As Jared swallowed the fluid, he placed the glass on the deck’s railing.

“Hmm…that’s not your usual evening beverage,” Carson commented quietly, continuing to pet Jared’s chest.

Chuckling softly, Jared rested the back of his head on Carson’s shoulder, then turned his head. Peering at his lover out of the corner of his eyes, he teased, “Not a fan of chocolate milk?”

Carson dipped his head and captured Jared’s mouth. He thrust his tongue between his lips, delving deep, mapping his mouth and caressing along his tongue. Opening happily, Jared welcomed Carson’s invasion.

As every time Carson kissed him, Jared’s blood heated and flowed south. His brain quickly began focusing on his cock. He rocked his hips backward, pleased to feel Carson’s erection pushing against his ass cheeks.

When Carson lifted his head on a groan, and Jared answered it with a growl.

“Yeah,” Jared rumbled.

Carson’s left hand eased downward. “On you, definitely tastes good,” he mumbled as he flipped the button on Jared’s fly, then shoved his hand inside. “Better than your usual scotch,” he teased, massaging the head of Jared’s swollen crown before working the sensitive bit of wrinkled flesh beneath it. “Why the switch?”

Jared hissed as he bucked in Carson’s hold. “Was drinking scotch when I decided to allow the Domingo gang to know where Jerry had been taken,” he admitted. “Got us in trouble.”

Even as zings of blissful fire coursed through his veins and goose bumps worked through his groin, he felt a stab of self-recrimination. Jared should have known better…should have called in back-up. The young ex-whore was going to be mated to a wolf shifter, after all, so he would be part of the pack…family.

Family is supposed to be protected.

“I could have told you no,” Carson countered as he pushed his hand deeper into Jared’s pants. His thick wrist pushed the zipper down, giving him more room. Gripping Jared’s dick, Carson began jacking him slowly. “Stop thinking about it.”

Jared snarled low in his throat upon feeling the sweet pressure. His abdominals clenched and his body shuddered. Desperately wanting, needing more, he reached one hand behind and between them, so he could grip Carson’s fly.

“Give me this,” Jared demanded, massaging his wolf’s erection through the fabric of his sweatpants. “Wanna feel you.”

Even after over a decade, Jared couldn’t get enough of the man behind him. He never would have thought it…that he would be begging to be fucked. Except, at that moment, it was what his body needed—to feel connected to his shifter.

A low, husky chuckle erupted from behind Jared, and Carson’s chest vibrated at his back. His lover’s hand on Jared’s prick slowed. With his other hand, he lightly plucked at Jared’s nipples through his shirt.

“Need my dick in your ass, handsome?” Carson rumbled huskily as he pushed harder into Jared’s hold. “Want me to fill you with my seed?”

“Hell yeah, Injun,” Jared instantly replied. “Pound my ass.”

As Jared spoke, he released Carson’s dick, which drew a soft snarl from his lover. Ignoring it, he reached into his jeans pocket and pulled out a single use packet of lube. Holding it up, Jared wiggled it between his fingers.

“Love that you’re always prepared.” Carson released his nipple with one more tug, then took the packet. “My fuckin’ boy scout.”

Jared laughed as he shoved his pants down and bent over the railing. “Better than a boy scout,” he countered, wiggling his ass. “An assassin.” Peering over his shoulder at his shifter, Jared added, “Plan for the worst. Aim for the best.”

Carson shoved the front of his sweatpants down, freeing his dick.

As Carson tore open the packet, Jared took a few seconds to admire the strong lines of his smooth, hairless torso. His long, black hair flowed over his shoulders, reaching his abdominals. His thin nest of black springy curls cradling his cock were his only other hair.

Licking his lips, Jared watched as Carson squirted a little of the lube onto his long, thick, bronzed erection. Pre-cum already gleamed at the tips, and soon the rest of his flesh sparkled in the moonlight. Jared licked his lips as the pearl of translucent fluid slid down his glans as Carson’s big hand smoothed up and down his erection.

“Enjoying the view?” Carson’s question drew Jared’s attention to his lover’s face.

Jared grinned as he admired the hungry expression etched on Carson’s classically handsome, Native American features. “You know that I am, Injun.” He wiggled his hips again. “Now put that rod of yours to good use.”