Love comes howling when--and where--you least expect it.
Legacy, Book 2
Isaiah Striker puts family first, the pack a distant second. Which is precisely the reason he's in noisy, crowded Chicago instead of alone in his beloved woods. One look at the owner of Haven nightclub, however, and a simple favor for his brother turns into something else entirely.
Meredith Cross holds her small pack together with sheer determination. After years on the run, they hide in the glare of the city's nightlife. Isaiah may heat her blood, but she can't afford to risk the lives of the outcast half-breeds in her care. Once exposed, every bounty hunter and werewolf purist in smelling distance will hunt them down.
But when their sexual attraction spirals out of control, a moment's distraction is all it takes to lead danger right to Meredith's door. For Meredith there's only one choice: her pack.
But Isaiah knows his mate when he sees her. And he's not giving up without a fight.
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August 02, 2010
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Excerpt from Isaiah's Haven by N.J. Walters
"Is there a problem?" Hank strode up to stand just to the side of the stranger.
"No problem. This gentleman was just leaving." She pleaded with Isaiah with her eyes. If he insisted on repeating his claim of her being a werewolf, he wouldn't get out of here alive. There was only one of him and three male werewolves. Was he a hunter or just a human who believed in such things?
She took a deep breath. She needed to be calm. What she got was a blast of pheromones and a jolt of arousal. A spicy scent filled her nose and made her sex clench with need. She almost moaned aloud as a shiver of need wracked her body and her nipples tightened. How had she missed this? He was a werewolf.
Impossible. She blinked in astonishment. In all the years they'd been here this had never happened. Male werewolves tended to stay away from the city, not liking the crowds or the closed-in space. It was one of the main reasons why she lived here with her sons and her adopted family.
Oh God! Hank. He was only a half-breed and many full-blooded werewolves were as bad as the bounty hunters wanting them dead. Teague, Neema and Kevin were all half-breeds as well. Their safety depended on her keeping control of this situation at all costs. She straightened her shoulders. If he thought to threaten her family, he was mistaken.
"You need to leave," she repeated. "Now."
He shook his head, the corners of his mouth turning up ever so slightly. It made him look sexier, if that was even possible.
Hank reached out to grab Isaiah's arm.
"You don't want to do that, pup," Isaiah warned.
Hank froze with his hand in the air. Benjamin growled low in his chest. Kevin came out from the back office, adding to the growing tension. "What's going on?"
Isaiah was still trying to process the fact that the woman he lusted after was a female werewolf, and a beautiful one at that. She was also coming into heat. There was no mistaking that enticing spicy perfume. No wonder he was attracted to her.
What was even more surprising was that she wasn't the only werewolf here. They all were. The odor from all the human patrons, the liquor and the food had masked their scent. Now that they were the only ones left, there was no disguising it.
It was crazy to see a group of werewolves living in a city surrounded by the myriad sights and sounds which assailed their senses daily. Bounty hunters frequented the cities for supplies and new recruits. Not to mention that vampires, witches and demons preferred to live in the city. And while the different species weren't exactly at war, they weren't sending each other Christmas cards either.
Around him several of the males began to growl. As if drawn by the tension, a lean red-haired male pushed through the kitchen door, wiping his hand on a white towel as he came. The sleeveless shirt he was wearing displayed an array of tattoos running up and down his muscular arms. With the trio of gold hoops in both ears and his eyebrow piercing, he looked like trouble. He was followed by the slender, curly-haired female Isaiah had seen waiting tables earlier in the evening.
Meredith held up her hand. "Enough."
Several of the males shot her a glare, but subsided. Isaiah was surprised at how all the males deferred to her. She was obviously the alpha female of this little pack. But where was the alpha male?
The thought of another male having the right to put his hands on her made Isaiah see red. A low, menacing growl came from deep in his chest. The younger woman took a step toward the red-haired male. He wrapped his arm around her protectively.
The tension in the room grew until it was so thick it was almost impossible to breathe. He didn't give a damn. He wasn't leaving. Not until he talked to Meredith.
The woman in question stepped forward and placed her hands on her hips. She exuded confidence, which was sexy as hell and turned him on even more. "Don't think you can come in here and threaten my family, wolf." She spat the last as though it were a bad word.
Having her so near, he could see the smoothness of her skin and smell her delicious scent. Unable to resist, he lowered his head and sniffed the curve of her neck. She smelled like something rare and exotic, a combination of musk, cinnamon and heat that was intoxicating. She shivered and started to lean toward him. He wanted to howl with pleasure. But it ended far too soon for his liking when someone pulled her away.
Isaiah jerked his head up to see who had ruined the moment between him and Meredith. It was one of the younger men. He started toward him, the promise of retaliation stamped on his face, only to have Meredith step in front of him again. "He's my son."
That brought Isaiah up cold. If there was one thing he could understand, it was wanting to protect family. He addressed the younger man directly, looking over Meredith's head. "I mean her no harm."
"What about the rest of them? Why are you here? Who sent you?"
Meredith was still in front of him demanding answers.
He sighed and rolled his head to work out some of the kinks in his neck. "No one sent me. I didn't come here to find any of you. I was just wandering the streets, heard a woman singing and came in."
"I don't believe you," said the man Meredith had called her son.
"Michael," she warned, and he subsided, but not without first giving Isaiah a look that promised death if he made a move toward his mother. Isaiah could respect that.
"There's nothing for you here. You need to leave." Isaiah understood her wanting to protect the pack, but he was curious why Meredith was in such a hurry to get rid of him when he obviously meant no harm.
"I'm not sure we should let him leave." The bouncer from the door spoke up. "What if he's working with the hunters?"
The menacing growl that came from Isaiah was impossible to suppress. "I kill hunters, pup, and anyone who works with them."
"So you say," the other male who'd worked behind the bar countered.
"Are you questioning my word?" He'd never had anyone do such a thing. He was a Striker. Their loyalty and honesty was above reproach.
"Enough." Meredith tapped the toe of her high-heeled shoe on the wooden floor. It drew his gaze down over her long, shapely legs and back up again. "No one is going to hurt anyone. And you're leaving."
It was time to regroup. Things were too volatile with so many males in the mix. They were on a short leash at the moment, but Isaiah had no doubt all the males would swing into action in the blink of an eye if they thought it was necessary. He didn't want to be put in a position of having to hurt them. That certainly wouldn't go over well with Meredith. The last thing he wanted was to antagonize her any more than he already had.
"I want to talk to you. Two minutes," he added before she could protest. "Alone."
Predictably enough, the males protested, but in the end Meredith was alpha and the rest of them headed toward to the kitchen.
"I'll only be on the other side of the door," Michael warned.
Isaiah inclined his head in understanding.
Meredith waited until they were all gone before turning back to him. "We're alone. What do you want?"
He shifted until they were so close they were almost touching. He could feel the heat from her skin, see the way her pupils dilated and the pulse in her neck beat faster. There was a slight hitch in her breathing as he invaded her space.
They weren't touching, not quite. He raised his hand and lightly brushed the curve of her cheek with the back of his knuckles. She sucked in a breath and the movement had her breasts touching his chest. Even through the layers of their clothing, he could feel the hard tips of her nipples.
Need roared through him. Raw desire pumped through his veins. He wanted Meredith more than he'd wanted anything in his life, as though she was somehow necessary to him.
He leaned down, his lips practically caressing hers as he answered her question. "You, Meredith. I want you."