Aeon Captive (Sensual Abduction Series Book 1)October 1, 2017
“Ryan, are you sure you’ll be back before the bar opens tonight? Because if you’re not, I’m not opening up.” Leaning against the bar, I couldn’t hide my frown. My brother didn’t even look at me as he headed for the front door.
“If I’m not, you open up or you’re fired, Lucy. We can’t afford to miss a day—you know that.” Echoing around the bar, Ryan’s declaration made me stiff. He was right, and I hated it. I hated this bar. I hated this town.
Glaring at his back, I shuffled from one foot to another before he disappeared behind the thick, wooden barrier. For a moment, I just continued to stare, but it was fruitless. Ryan wouldn’t come back when his mate was waiting on him—not that he’d change his mind anyway. I glanced at the clock hanging on a support beam, and a loud groan escaped from beneath the curves of my frown.
“Why do I get stuck doing all of this?” Sinking down onto the bar, I rested my forehead on my arms. My complaint didn’t warrant an answer, though. I knew why this had happened.
Ryan was with Sylvia. Just thinking of that human made my already bad mood grow more sour. I was happy for Ryan; finding your mate was a life-altering event. Usually it was for the better, too. I just wasn’t a fan of the person he’d decided to mate with. There wasn’t even a reason, but I couldn’t find it in me to like her.
I straightened myself out, and the top of my spine tingled as I turned to catch a reflection of myself in a gap between bottles of vodka. My lean, angular face was twisted in displeasure, my wild hair framing all of the sharp edges. Reaching up to run my fingers through the dark strands, my expression only darkened.
“You do know getting jealous of Sylvia is useless, right, Luce?” Whirling to face Todd, I clenched my hands into fists at my sides. He leaned casually against the door frame to the kitchen, brushing off my anger as if I was a fly.
To him and to Ryan, that was probably all I was, anyway.
“Shut up, Todd. I’m not jealous of that human.” My snap produced only a half shrug from the man standing a few feet away, his face revealing nothing. I didn’t think I ever saw Todd smile unless he was in the kitchen or talking about food. Grimacing, I wondered for a moment how he and Ryan were friends. Todd wasn’t a shifter, but he knew about us. I was fairly certain Ryan hadn’t told him, either.
“Yes, you are. It’s perfectly okay for another woman to be more beautiful than you are, Lucy. The first step to loving yourself is acknowledging the fact that there are people out there that are better than you. And it would help if you interacted with your inner beast, too, you know. When was the last time you shifted?” The probing question made me huff, and I crossed my arms over my chest while my mind wandered. I couldn’t even remember the last time I had shifted, but despite Todd’s claims, it didn’t affect the way I looked at myself. Knowing he thought so had my blood boiling.
I didn’t even go near the whole jealousy issue with a hundred-foot pole.
“I do love myself, and it doesn’t matter when the last time I shifted was. Being a shifter doesn’t define who I am.” It was a weak answer, even to me, and Todd rolled his eyes.