I stood on the porch of Dr. Aiden Joss’s luxurious home irate as hell. Someone was supposed to meet me at the airport in Philadelphia. I ended up having to take a cab because all of the rentals were booked from the only airport about twenty-five miles from the small town of McCormick, Pennsylvania. The taxi driver must have mistaken me for an oil baron with the fare he charged. He ended up having to leave me at the front gate because the intercom was busted. Thankfully, being a human hybrid had its advantages. After tossing my duffle over the ten-foot wall, I followed by leaping over. Some security.
The downpour turned my black, wavy hair into thick tresses snaking down my neck and upper back. Sadly, my duffle bag was just as pitiful as I looked, since it wasn’t waterproof. I’d exercised more care when picking out my purse and laptop bag.
The front door opened. A tall, bulky man who looked like he missed his calling as an NFL linebacker stood against the golden glow of the interior. His face was criminal-hard, though something in his dark eyes said otherwise. He wore a white shirt and jeans with a brace around his left knee. He blinked.
“Oh, boy.” He hurried to unlock the storm door and let me inside. “You must be Ms. Alexa York.”
I struggled getting past him with my wet duffle, carry-on and my drenched clothes clinging to my cold body. “I am. I take it the phones don’t work around here.”
He took my stuff and set it aside. “The power has been flickering all night. They just got the lights back on about three minutes ago. The phone is Internet, so when the power goes out, everything goes out.”
I unzipped my sodden jacket. “I get it. No phone, no phone calls. Which is why I was stuck at the airport.”
He sighed. “Again, my apologies, ma’am. With so much going on, I only had a chance to worry about one thing at a time.”
I glanced at him before answering. So much going on? The house was quiet and not a soul in sight. What could’ve possibly had him too busy to pick me up when he knew I was coming? Heck, I was here to be his replacement while he was on the mend. If he didn’t want me here, forgetting me at the airport or not sending a car to pick me up worked in his favor.
He offered his hand to me. “My name’s Sammy. I’m Dr. Joss’s med tech and assistant.”
“Med tech?” I looked him up and down. “But I thought you were his—”
He chuckled. “I’m really his assistant. I’m only his bodyguard when I have to be. And given the kind of world that lies beyond those gates, I find myself playing the latter more often.”
I closed my eyes and sighed. “I’m sorry if I sounded a little crotchety, but—”
Sammy waved a large hand. “No need to apologize. I’d be a lot more than pissed had I been in your shoes. Speaking of which, let me show you to your room so you can get some dry clothes on.”
Snorting, I glanced at the puddle forming around my duffle. “Dry clothes, huh. That would be nice.”
“No worries, Ms. York. I’ll find you something.”
“It’s Alexa, by the way.” Those close to me called me Lex. We weren’t there yet.
My room was upstairs on the second floor along with five other bedrooms. Every piece of furniture was stained pine and sitting against light blue walls. Thankfully, I had my own private bathroom. When I looked out the bathroom window, light was coming from the woods somewhere behind the trees where it shouldn’t be.
I sure hoped Dane had told me everything I needed to know about this so-called mission. I would hate to learn something the hard—painful—way. Though that would never be his intention, I also knew his idea of what information was important to know was different from mine.
Had it not been for Wesley Dane, a full-blooded werewolf friend of my family, I wouldn’t be here to play bodyguard for one of his closest friends. It wasn’t the thousand dollars a day, tax-free money for my services that had brought me here. I needed the distraction more than anything.
“So, how much do you know about me?” After snuggling into a thick, warm robe I found hanging on a hook, I dried off my hair with a towel and opened the bathroom door.
Sammy was still there, though keeping his distance by waiting in the hall. I thought it was weird, but whatever, seeing as this was more his house than mine. “Enough,” he replied. “You’re half-werewolf, which is extremely rare. You’re also married, which means either your husband, who’s a full-blood, or Dane is going to tear Dr. Joss apart if anything bad
happens to you. Although, that sort of defeats the purpose of you being the doctor’s bodyguard.” He half-smiled.
“Are you expecting me to be torn apart?”
“No.” He chuckled. “But I expect you’ll be put through the wringer.”