Authors: Marla Monroe
Men of the Border Lands 1
Belonging to Them
Brandon and Bolton are brothers living in the Border Lands. Heather hides in their trailer to escape slavery, but has she traded one cage for another? The brothers are more than happy to help her out and take her home to their Border Land Farm. They work to convince her they are good guys and won’t hurt her.
Bolton knows he has fallen in love with her, but Brandon isn’t sure she sees him as more than her keeper or owner. He wants her to feel the same love she feels for his brother, so he pulls away.
It takes nearly losing her to a wolf attack for Brandon to realize he’s being childish in asking for her to treat him differently than she does his brother. She loves them both equally, and he has almost lost the best thing that ever happened to him.
Contemporary, Ménage a Trois/Quatre, Western/Cowboys
BELONGING TO THEM
Men of the Border Lands 1
Siren Publishing, Inc.
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IMPRINT: Menage Everlasting
BELONGING TO THEM
Copyright © 2011 by Marla Monroe
E-book ISBN: 1-61034-979-2
First E-book Publication: September 2011
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Belonging to Them
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Men of the Border Lands 1
Copyright © 2011
Brandon loaded the supplies he and Bolton had obtained during their trip to Barter Town. They planned to make a stop in Skyline, the deserted city closest to their home, deep in the deserted outlands of west New America. Bolton walked up with a frown on his face.
“I couldn’t find a part for the pump.”
“We’ll look in Skyline when we go through. Not very many people salvage there with the wolves having taken up residence.”
“I hope we find it. The one we’re using isn’t going to work much longer.”
“Ready to load up and leave?” Brandon asked.
“Let’s go. I’m tired of being here.”
Brandon knew why his brother hated Barter Town. The women. They were little more than slaves here. Ever since the year of catastrophes, women were a rarity and highly sought after. In one year, floods, tornadoes, earthquake, tsunamis, and droughts had devastated the earth, toppling governments all over the world. All of this was followed by diseases that had killed even more. The United States, now called New America, had been one of the hardest hit. Now, five years later, less than a third of the population survived.
They started to load up when a noise caught their attention. They looked at each other and walked back around to where they’d closed the doors to their U-Haul trailer. Brandon threw open the door. A whimper came from the back of the trailer. Bolton climbed inside and cursed. He dragged out a female of about twenty-two years old. She had matted, reddish-brown hair and wore torn clothes a mile too big for her.
“What in the hell are you doing in our trailer?” Bolton asked, still holding her arm.
“Please. Take me with you. They make me do things.”
Brandon closed his eyes. He knew what things. Two men ran a brothel of a sort with women they’d caught or traded for. Neither of them used it, because of the way the women were treated.
“I can’t send her back there, Brandon.” Bolton said the obvious.
“Ah, hell. Climb back in and keep quiet until we get out of town.”
“Oh, God, thank you.” She started crying.
“Shh. Get back in before someone sees you,” Bolton told her.
She scrambled back inside the trailer and Bolton closed the doors back, latching them. They looked at each other then walked back to the truck and climbed inside. Brandon pulled out of Barter Town, hoping they’d made the right decision.
An hour outside of town, when there was little chance anyone would see them, Brandon pulled over. They climbed out once again to open the trailer doors. The timid female climbed out, squinting in the afternoon sun. She was soaking wet with sweat. Brandon cursed that he had waited so long to let her out. It had to be ninety degrees inside the trailer.
“You all right?” he asked.
Bolton walked back to the truck and returned with a cool bottle of water.
“Drink it. You’re dehydrated,” he told her.
She grabbed the bottle and turned it up in desperation.
“Whoa there. Slow down. You’ll make yourself sick.” Brandon grabbed the bottle from her hands.
“I’m sorry.” She cowered, looking down at her feet.
Brandon gave her the water back, figuring she would be okay drinking the rest of it, but she was careful this time, only sipping.
“Let’s get back on the road.” Brandon turned to get back in the truck.
The woman moved as if to climb back in the trailer, but Bolton closed the door and grabbed her hand, pulling her around toward the front of the truck.
“You’re not riding back there. You’re riding up front with us.”
“Won’t someone see me?”
“We’re too far out for anyone to come by now.” Bolton urged her up into the truck.
“We’re going to Skyline next. We’ll get you some clothes while we’re there.”
Wide eyes turned to Brandon. “Aren’t there wild animals there?”
“They won’t attack you as long as you’re careful. We’re careful.” Bolton closed the door.
Brandon started the truck and pulled back on the road heading toward the deserted city.
All three of them were quiet on the three-hour drive. Brandon noticed that Bolton kept looking at their addition as if he couldn’t believe she were there. Having a female was a huge responsibility. They would have to take good care of her and protect her from thieves. There were men who would steal her from them, given half a chance.
Brandon pulled into the outskirts of Skyline around four that afternoon. They had another four good hours until the sun started to set. They had to make it quick. First stop would be an implement store for the part they needed to fix the well.
“I’ll look for it. Why don’t you two drive over to a clothing store for her,” Bolton said.
“I don’t like leaving you here.” Brandon stared at Bolton.
“I’ll be fine. I have the pistol if there’s trouble.”
Brandon sighed. It made sense to split up and grab what they needed, but he didn’t like it. Nodding, he let Bolton out as close to the front door as he could get.
“We’ll be back in forty-five minutes.”
He pulled off as soon as Bolton squeezed through the doors. He looked over at his passenger and noticed she had moved closer to the door. She was afraid of them, but had been more afraid of her keepers.
He stopped at a Walmart not too far from the implement store. He drove up to the back bay doors that were pulled shut. He knew they were unlocked since he and Bolton had left them that way the last time they had been there.
“Okay, follow me inside. Don’t run. If there are any wolves around, they’ll chase you if you run, but leave you alone if you don’t. Got it?”
The female nodded a little too rapidly for his taste. She was almost in shock. He hoped she would follow his directions. He was worried she hadn’t really heard a thing he’d said. He got out first and pulled open the door. She climbed out of the truck and walked slowly toward him. Good girl, he thought.
Once inside, he closed the door behind her, and they were in total darkness. The skylights didn’t start until you were in the main part of the store. He grabbed her hand and carefully negotiated the path they’d made before when they had been there, to the double doors that led into main part of the building. Once through them, the skylights offered enough light for them to easily negotiate the aisles.
“Let’s find you some clothes. You’ll need mostly jeans. Do you know what size you are?”
“I used to be a twelve, but things are big on me now.” She didn’t look at him.
“Better get the twelves, and try on some of the smaller sizes to see what you need for now. Once you’re back home with us, you’ll put your weight back on,” he assured her.
They made their way to the right section and Brandon loaded her up with different sizes to try in thejeans. Once she’d found what actually fit, he got all they had in the two sizes. Then hegrabbed enough tops for a week. Nexthe moved to the men’s section and found work shirts he thought would fit her well enough. He took the clothes from her.
“I’m going to put these in the truck. You gather up whatever underwear and female stuff you need. Grab one of the buggies sitting around.”
“You’re going to leave me here?” Her voice shook.
“You’ll be fine. There aren’t any animals in the store. We’ve been here several times gathering supplies,” he assured her.
She nodded her head and looked around her. Brandon huffed out a breath and hurried to get rid of the clothes and get back to her before she had a panic attack. He found her pushing a buggy in the toothpaste section. Her buggy had a stack of underwear and socks, as well as probably most of the tampons they had in the store. She’d also gathered deodorant, toothbrushes, hairbrushes, and shampoo.
They searched for a plastic bin to carry everything in, and then headed back to the back of the store and the truck. Brandon loaded the bin into the back of the trailer,then climbed back in the cab of the truck to drive back and pick up Bolton.
When he pulled back into the parking lot, there were two wolves pacing back and forth in front of the doors. He honked his horn and pulled in between them. They backed up to the end of the drive.He glanced over at his passenger and found her shivering. She’d scooted over closer to him. Bolton came out of the glass doors carrying a box full of something and jumped in the truck, slamming the door behind him.
“We can pull over outside of town, and I’ll transfer this to the back,” he said.
“What all did you get?” Brandon asked.
“Found two of the parts we need for the well, plus some other things we might need as things wear out. Got some lubricant as well.”
“Okay, anything else we need that you can think of?”
“Want to stop by one of the car dealerships and grab some batteries, or wait till next time?”
“Let’s get home. We can do that next trip. We’ve still got a good five hours of driving,” Brandon reminded him. “It will be close to eleven before we make it back.”
Bolton nodded. Brandon pulled out of town with several wolves following behind them for about a mile.
“Why do the wolves stay there?” the female asked.
“There are plenty of places for them to make dens in the abandoned buildings.”
“What’s your name anyway?” Bolton asked her.
“I’m Bolton and this is my brother Brandon. How long were you in Barter Town?”
“I’m not sure, maybe a month?”
“We’ll take care of you now,” Brandon told her.
She only nodded and continued to cower between them. Brandon wondered how long it would be before she got comfortable around them. She was a tiny little thing compared to them. She might be five two and probably weighed less than a hundred twenty pounds. It was hard to tell much more about her other than she had medium-length reddish hair. The one clear thing about her was her blue eyes. They held shadows, but were the color of a clear spring sky.
“Where did you come from before Barter Town?” Brandon asked.
“I was in Texas, and got sold to some men heading to Barter Town. They traded me for something.”
“Texas where you were from originally?” Bolton asked.
“No, I’m from Mississippi. Most everyone I knew died from the plague, so I and several others headed for Texas thinking it would be better there. We made it as far as the border when some men came along in a car and grabbed all of the women. They took us to some sort of compound where there were about twenty other women.” She trailed off and looked down at her hands.
“Well, all that is behind you now,” Brandon said. “We’ll keep you safe. You belong to us now.”
She nodded her head, but Brandon heard the sniff and figured there were tears to go with it. No doubt she was wondering if she’d ended up in a better situation or not. She wouldn’t have any idea how they would treat her. Females were possessions now. Those lucky enough to have one should treat them like a precious gift and not like cattle, but most men were dogs and especially since the fall of the governments.