Authors: Jenika Snow
All Bite, No Growl
Forget the foreplay. For the truly committed, it’s all bite.
Willow has loved Devon and Case for as long as she can remember, but as lion shifters they will eventually find their mates. When she allows herself to be with her two lions after a drunken party, she fears she’s ruined a lifelong friendship and flees before morning.
Devon and Case have been inseparable since they could walk, but they can’t tell anyone that they are mates. The pride of shifters they belong to won’t accept a same-sex mating. There’s no way they’ll accept their love for Willow?
When a shocking revelation brings Willow’s world crashing down, she has no choice but to tell Devon and Case how she feels. Will they be able to accept what fate has thrown at them? Do they want to?
eBooks are not transferable. They cannot be sold, shared or given away as it is an infringement of the copyright of this work.
ALL BITE, NO GROWL
Out For You Series
Copyright © 2015 JENIKA SNOW
All Romance eBooks, LLC Palm Harbor, Florida 34684
This is a work of fiction and any resemblance to persons, living or dead, or business establishments, events, or locales is coincidental.
All Rights Are Reserved. No part of this may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever with out written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.
First All Romance eBooks publication: June 2015
Willow Black felt out of place at this party, felt like she was standing in the middle of a room, alone, no one noticing her when they passed by, and awkward as hell. She wouldn’t have come here until she knew Devin and Case would be here as well. They weren’t supposed to show up until after their shifts ended at the lumber store, which, looking at her cell phone for the time, meant any minute now. She knew everyone at the party, but she still felt out of place.
Being here, having no one even acknowledge her, was weird. Everyone was friends with Devin Hendrix and Case Braxton, and because those two guys were so popular and well-liked, because she was friends with them, it was kind of default that others talked to her as well. But if the two guys weren’t with her others ignored her. She wasn’t pretty, wasn’t thin and popular, or on the cheerleading squad. No one looked at her and thought she’d be someone they’d hang out with, well, no one except Devin and Case. Those two had always been by her side since they were all five years old. They’d never shunned her because she was a little on the chubby side, or that she’d just gotten contacts and her braces off. At eighteen years old and in her last year of high school, she had had this fantasy that things would have been different for her. She had envisioned that boys would be calling her, asking her out on dates, but not one guy ever showed her interest.
Rubbing her hand over her eyes, she looked around the room; saw Hilary and Frannie, the most popular girls in schools, eye her with distaste. They wanted Devin and Case and made no secret that they wanted them. But, Devin and Case never showed interest in them or any woman for that matter, and Willow felt a twinge of disappointment in that. The fact was they were shifters—lions trapped in human bodies. Because of that they really didn’t have a choice on who they ended up with permanently. Could they screw whomever they wanted? Yeah, and the guys normally did. But when they found their mate, that one person who was the other half of their animal, there were no others for them.
The mating instinct could happen, as early as sixteen years old, which seemed very young, but for shifters it wasn’t. She had imagined herself mated to both Devon and Case on so many occasions, and although it was something she had laid in bed thinking about, fantasizing about, she knew something like that happening was not reality. But, how would she feel when the guys actually found their mate? It would be devastating, heartbreaking, and she didn’t know how she’d fake the happiness she’d have to show to the guys.
The secret she harbored was the fact she wanted Devon and Case just as much as the next girl, just as much as a female could want two males that were so out of her league it was laughable. To say Willow had no self-confidence was an understatement. But she knew the guys never looked at her as more than just a friend, never even probably thought of her as anything more than one of the guys. Feeling disheartened by all of this shit, she tossed back the rest of her beer and went in search for another. She already felt buzzed, but she wanted to feel nothing, wanted to feel like she was floating and didn’t have to worry about any of this. School was officially over with, this was the last big gathering for the high school seniors, and why shouldn’t she enjoy it?
The music was loud, slightly obnoxious, and Devon grabbed a beer from the cooler in the living rom and walked around the living room. He had come here with Case, his lifelong friend, but also his mate. Yeah, he was mated to a male—hot as fuck and just as alpha as he was.
He had found out Case was his mate last year, and although he wanted to shout it to the fucking world, the fact remained that in their culture, the shifter community, mating a male was not something that others accepted freely. So, they had kept it quiet, loved each other the way shifters could love their mates, and maybe one day they’d be able to come out to their pride and show them that being with the same sex didn’t mean there couldn’t be a connection, couldn’t be a mating.
But school was out, they’d be living together as “roommates” while they attended the local community college, and fuck anyone that ended up finding out. The truth was Devon and Case were alphas to the nth degree, and shouldn’t have to care what anyone thought. But there were parts of both of them that wanted that approval. They’d talked about this in detail, and at the end of the day decided keeping quiet was the best choice right now.
He threw back the rest of his beer and followed a group of people into the kitchen where the hard stuff was being served. He was trying to find Willow, because he knew she’d been here for the last hour waiting for them. Damn traffic, and fuck them for making her come here alone.
They cared about the little lioness more than anyone else. She may not be mated, may not even be theirs in the way that Devon and Case were together, but the truth was they’d always wanted her. They had just never told her because opening up like that, especially when she’d eventually find her half, was just a heartbreaker in the process. They’d found out early that they were mates, but hell, she might not sense her other half until she was in her twenties. The cosmos and this mating bond was a funny thing, tricky and unpredictable.
He looked around the party, saw the entire pride here, his entire senior class even, and thought he’d miss some of these assholes. Devon pushed past a few guys talking about all the human pussy they got last weekend when they went into town, and Devon curled his lip in disgust that they were so crude in their comments. Yeah, they lived side-by-side with humans as well, but the way some of the lions spoke, acted even, was almost like they thought humans were below them. That was ignorant thinking.
Devon had been with shifter and human females before he’d found out Case was his mate, and although he knew he was gay from day one, he also didn’t deny that he liked pussy. He enjoyed the softness of a woman, the sweet smell of her skin, but he also liked the hardness of Case, the bulging muscles, and his big-ass cock. Of course he never revealed he was gay, and neither had Case because he knew that his pride wouldn’t know how to take their sexual orientation, even if they were mated.
“Devon!” He heard Willow’s voice, and searched the crowd. Three hulking lions, their predatory gazes locked on Willow, surrounded the little lioness. She was so small compared to them, short, but thick and curvy.
He knew the three shifters that surrounded her, football players at his school that stayed together and had a reputation for tag teaming girls because they got off on that shit. He wasn’t friends with them, had even gotten into a brawl or two with one of the shifters last year. This rage rose up in him, his lion moving forward, under the surface of his body, at the thought. Willow was drunk, and those motherfuckers would most likely try and take advantage of her. She waved her hand in the air, her cheeks red, her lips parted and glossy. One of the guys handed her another beer, and he looked over at Devon, a smile on his face.
“Hey,” Case said close to him, the scent of his mate washing through his body.
“Come on,” Devon said and pushed his way through the throng of people. He stopped in front of the assholes, their height and size the same large proportions as his and Case’s.
“Hey, guys. Do a shot with me,” Willow said, her grin wide. She moved away from where she leaned on the counter. The fucker named Robs grabbed her around the waist, and Devon saw red. He pulled Robs away from her, grabbed Willow’s hand, and gave her over to Case for safekeeping. He stepped up closer to Robs, sensed his friends coming closer, but he was ready for this. He couldn’t control himself, couldn’t control his lion or the fact that it wanted to tear the fuck out of these assholes that dared touch Willow.
“Oh man, you don’t know how long I’ve been waiting for this, Devon.”
He sensed Willow growing uncomfortable, but this was a long time coming with this asshole. He saw Robs’s eyes flash amber from his animal, but Devon felt his own do the same.
“Devon, come on man,” Case said and tried to pull him back. He shrugged off his mate’s hold.
“Listen to your buddy, Devon.”
“Hey, Robs, walk the fuck away. You don’t want to get into this right now,” Case said.
“Devon, come on, seriously.” Willow tried pulling him back again, and he felt his lion get a little less aggressive at her touch.
“It’s shot time, Devon, come on,” Case said, and Devon forced himself to move away. They walked over to the corner, and Case grabbed a bottle of whiskey off the counter and three shot glasses. He shoved a shot glass in Devon’s chest, spilling the whiskey. “Drink up man and forget about them.”
“Easy for you to say. You didn’t see the look in their eyes when they looked at Willow.”
She hiccupped and grabbed one of the shot glasses. Devon took it away from her.
“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have drank so much, but I felt awkward without you guys, and everyone kept staring at me.”
“It’s not your fault those guys are motherfuckers.”
Her eyes grew wide at Case’s crass words. He wrapped his arm around Willow’s shoulders, pulled her in close, and for a moment Devon just stared at his mate holding the girl they both cared about. The thought of all three of them being mated sounded like a dream-fucking-come-true, but the odds of a triad mating were slim, very rare too. No, they needed to make sure they kept everything with her on a friends-only basis.
Case let go of Willow’s shoulder and poured them all another shot. He wanted to get out of here, wanted to be alone with his mate and the female he cared about more than anything else in the world. He stared at Willow, took in her long brown hair that curled at the ends, the color of her amber eyes, and her innocent expression. She was so damn pretty, but she didn’t think she was, didn’t see herself as anything more than chubby and ugly no matter how many times they told her the opposite. Willow was smart, quiet, and timid, and so unlike the other lionesses in their pride, but she was theirs, had been part of their lives for as long as they could remember.
He loved her more than just as a friend, and he’d spoken about those feelings with Devon. It hadn’t been a surprise when his mate had said the same thing. But it wasn’t smart or fair to be with her as anything more than friends. She’d find a mate one day, and if they were physical with her, a lot of emotions would get sticky in the mix. It was better if they kept things platonic even if it was hard as hell.
He watched his mate throw back the shot, took in the strong six-foot-six height of his mate, the long black hair that fell over his forehead, and the light green eyes. His mate was a gorgeous bastard, but it pained him to keep their connection from others. He wanted to shout it loud and proud, but it wasn’t safe or smart to do so, not until everyone was more accepting of two males mating. As it was he didn’t know what would happen to them, or how they would be treated if they came out now.
Case had always liked males, had always jerked off to thinking of their hard bodies, long cocks. But he loved women too, loved the soft curves, soft voices. He couldn’t lie and say he hadn’t thought about being with another male throughout his life, about how muscle against muscle would feel, but they had only been thoughts, up until he’d been seventeen and seen Devon as his mate. He just wanted to let go, be who and what he wanted to be, and not worry how it would affect the pride, or who would care. But that wasn’t reality. What he knew for damn sure was he wanted to fucking take Devon and Willow, even if she wasn’t his mate by bond, hard and fast, get lost in them, and fuck up anyone who told him it was wrong.