April 2023 Newsletter
As far as she was concerned, that little ten-minute trip was the longest ever. Conall parked as close as possible to the building she needed to get to, then he shut off the motor and stared straight ahead. Miki grabbed her backpack, ready to storm off, but his voice stopped her. “When you’re done, come back here. Don’t go anywhere else. Don’t try and sneak off. ‘Cause I will find you. And if I have to do that I’ll be much less pleasant.”
“You’re being an asshole.”
“Sorry. It must be the aftereffects of the drugs you gave me!”
Miki didn’t even flinch when he started yelling. “You’re going to hold that over my head forever, aren’t you?”
Conall stared at her with his mouth open.
He turned away from her. “Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.”
Okay. Fine. He wanted to be an unforgiving asshole, he could be an unforgiving asshole. Self-righteous prick.
She jumped out of the SUV, pulled her backpack over both her shoulders, and cut across campus toward her advisor’s office.
“Hey, psychopath!” Miki, halfway to her destination, turned around to see Amy and Craig walking toward her.
“You okay?” Amy knew her well. “I can’t tell if you’re pissed or sad.”
Both. “It’s nothing. I’m okay. What are you guys doing up so early? Or did you even bother going to bed?”
Amy sighed. “I gotta teach a bunch of freshman about quantum physics. Three hours of my life I’ll never get back.” She bitched a lot, but Amy was one of the best associate professors the university had. And if they were smart, they’d cough up and give her tenure before MIT or Harvard finally stole her away.
“And I’m here to see Professor Leucrotta.” Miki felt a shudder go down her spine at Craig’s muttered words. And it wasn’t one of those cool ones Conall gave her. But one of those creepy shudders she got like when she saw a spider crawling around her bathtub.
“Don’t worry. He agreed to meet with me about the grant money. Maybe I’ll be able to track down his password while I’m in his office.”
“Be careful. Don’t do anything stupid.”
“Who? Me? And where is my fifty bucks?”
She smirked. “I believe you forgot to give me that this morning.”
“You’re not giving that back to me, are you?”
Miki grinned. “Nope. But thanks for checking up on me.”
“Anytime. We felt like we couldn’t leave you alone with Conan the Barbarian.”
“Hey, Mik.” Amy nudged her. “Check it out. Your boring dream man.” Miki followed Amy’s nod and saw Troy Benson walking toward her.
“Miki? Is that you?”
Miki braved a smile at Troy and quickly slipped her backpack off her shoulders. Nothing geekier than walking around with a giant backpack attached to you. And Troy was so not geeky. Almost six feet tall—a nice normal height, unlike some other abnormally large males she knew—with light brown hair and dark green eyes. She’d had a crush on him since Advanced Chem. Not surprisingly, Troy had his arm around some tall, blonde babe who looked like she didn’t eat without throwing up after, but he kissed her on the cheek and sent her on her way before walking over.
“Wow, you haven’t changed. Still my little Miki.”
Funny, that didn’t seem like much of a compliment.
“Did she say anything else?”
Conall leaned against the passenger door of the SUV, his cell phone against his ear, and stared out at the deserted campus. It was still early and students were just starting to appear. “Said she was trying to get herself a cowboy.”
“I don’t really think that’s helpful.”
Conall grunted and Zach was silent for a moment on the other end. “Is everything okay with you?” he finally asked.
“I’ve just never heard you sound so much…like me.”
Conall chuckled. “I’m fine.”
“Miki still giving you a hard time?”
“Something like that.” He wasn’t about to admit to his Alpha Male he let some crazy woman drug him and take off in the middle of the night. If for no other reason, he knew Zach would never let him live it down.
“I’m sure she’ll get over it eventually. Anyway, did you believe her?” Yes! But he was never going to believe short, vicious women again. Especially ones whose whole bodies shook during orgasm.
“Oh…uh…yeah, yeah. I did. I believed her.”
“Okay. Well, you two be careful anyway. Soon as Miki’s done, bring her ass back here before my mate forces me to start drinking. When she’s stressed, she paces. It’s driving me nuts.”
Conall sniffed the wind coming from the direction Miki had headed. He smelled something. Miki’s scent, but mixed with something else. Something…male.
“Conall? Are you listening to me?”
“Yeah. Sure. We’ll be careful. Gotta go.” He shut off the phone and followed.
“So? Still living in Texas, huh?”
Miki took a deep breath. She would stay calm. She could do this. Although it wasn’t like Miki was exactly Miss Smooth with the moves. In fact, she could be kind of a doofus with men…except Conall. With him she didn’t seem to have any problems wrapping her legs around his waist while he slammed her against a wall.
“For now. I’m going to be finishing my doctorate this week. And Conridge mentioned an assistant professor position.”
“That would mean we’d be working together. Not bad. And Conridge is tough.” Boy, was she. Professor Conridge was notorious throughout the university. People feared her. When Miki decided to finally finish up her thesis, her old advisor had gone to another university and Conridge volunteered to take her on. To this day, she had no idea why. She thought the woman hated her. Of course, she seemed to hate everybody.
“So that’ll be great for you, huh?”
She should have noticed the look of fear on Craig’s face and the look of lust on Amy’s. She should have noticed the fact that the most enormous shadow had just fallen over her. But all she’d noticed was Troy and her lame attempt to get him to notice her. “Well, you know, it’s definitely time for a change.” She stopped talking because Troy had obviously stopped listening. Moments from turning to see what horror stood behind her since that seemed to have everybody’s interest, Miki instead froze as big long arms suddenly wrapped around her and she wasn’t going anywhere.
“Hey, baby.” Warm lips pressed against her ear, sending a delicious and treacherous tingle down her spine and straight to her clit. “I thought you were going to see your professor. You’re going to be late.”
She looked up to see Conall holding on to her. He smiled. An evil wolf smile. The kind they gave just before they took down a deer.
“What the hell—”
He squeezed her tight and Miki fought just to breathe. “You always have to make sure Miki’s doing what she needs to do otherwise she gets totally lost.”
Miki looked at Craig and Amy but she could already see they were enjoying this way too much to do anything about it.
Conall nuzzled her neck and she thought about digging his eyes out of their sockets. “So, you going to introduce me to your friends, baby?”
She tried to pull away, but he wasn’t letting her go anywhere. And Troy looked way too freaked out by Conall to say anything. Instead he kept staring.
She would so make him pay for this later.
“No. I’m not.”
Amy jumped in before Miki could start slamming her boot into Conall’s instep. “I’m Amy. This is Craig. And this is Troy.”
Miki stared at his neck. It was a big neck. Might spurt a lot of blood if she cut it.
“Hey, Craig. We met this morning in our hotel room.”
“But it’s nice to meet the other friends of my honey-bear.”
Amy almost spit out her gum while Craig suddenly became interested in what was halfway across campus. Troy looked a little disappointed as he stared at Miki. She could see her future slipping away.
“Troy—” she began. But one of Conall’s big hands slid under her T-shirt and suddenly she felt claws. His claws, running lightly across her stomach.
I am going to kill him.
“Baby, we better get you to your professor’s office or you’re going to be late. Nice meeting you, Amy. Craig. Trey.”
“Whatever.” Conall’s hand gripped Miki’s and dragged her away. She barely had a chance to grab her backpack before she was stumbling behind him.
“Which building?” he bit out.
He suddenly pulled her into his arms. To anyone else it probably seemed affectionate, but she knew better. And, as it was, she was way too pissed to feel anything but homicidal rage anyway. He leaned in close, his hot breath in her ear. “Keep it up and I’ll make you wish they’d finished you in that alley.”
“That one. Over there.”
Conall again started moving, pulling Miki behind him. He walked into the building, found a stairwell, and dragged her inside it. As soon as he released her hand, she slugged him in the chest. Then cursed up a blue streak when she felt the pain all the way up her arm. Of course, he didn’t even flinch.
“Are you done?” he snarled.
“Sonofabitch! What the fuck was that shit!” She shook her hand out, worried she broke a knuckle. Conall suddenly caught it and rubbed the knuckles between his two hands while he glared at her. She was almost positive he didn’t even realize he was doing it.
“Who the hell was that guy anyway?”
“Who? Troy?” Was he jealous? Well, then, she shouldn’t disappoint. “That was the future Mr. Miki Kendrick.”
Wrong! He was the future Mr. Miki Kendrick. Not some lame, tiny man with tiny little hands. He took one look at the guy and knew he was an asshole. No way would Conall let Miki anywhere near that guy. True, she was a vindictive bitch. But she was his vindictive bitch. He knew that now. No more bullshitting around. No more debating about what he really wanted. Miki Kendrick was his.
Clearly, though, he needed new tactics. The usual wasn’t working with her. Mostly because she was nuts. But he was flexible. And mean enough to go after what he wanted.
“I think you need to stay out of my life, Viking.” She tried to yank her hand out of his grasp, but he wasn’t letting go.
“And I think you fail to realize that I now have the upper hand here.”
“What? For drugging you? You expect me to believe for a second you’d hurt me or turn me in to the cops?”
“No. But who knows what I would do to him.”
Miki froze. Those big, beautiful brown eyes staring up at him. “You. Wouldn’t. Dare.”
“You spit food at me. You set me up with the cops at the airport. And you drugged me. Do you really want to test the ‘you wouldn’t dare’ theory now?”
He could see the muscles of her jaw clenching and unclenching. She was so pissed off, which only made her smell so tasty.
“Leave him alone, Conall. He didn’t do anything to you.”
He kicked her backpack out of the way. “But what about you, Mik? Does he have you?”
“Nobody has me.”
He stepped toward her until she backed herself up against the wall. He’d never worked so hard to be menacing before, but Miki kept bringing that out in him. And it didn’t help that every time he did it, the smell of her lust punched him in the face.
“But I want you.”
“So I gathered.”
“And if I’m busy chasing you around, I can’t exactly be kicking the living shit out of him, now can I?”
Miki crossed her arms in front of her chest. “I guess.”
“So then maybe we make a little agreement.”
“What kind of agreement?”
“You give me until Friday.”
“To do what?”
He placed both his arms on the wall above her and leaned in. “To get close to you. After you defend your thesis, if I haven’t gotten between those sweet thighs of yours by then, it’s over. I never bother you again. I won’t even look at you.”
“You have got to be kidding me.”
“When it comes to you, I don’t joke around.”
He expected her to kick him in the ’nads. But she didn’t. Interesting.
“At least give me a shot, Mik.” He gently pulled her arms away from her body and leaned in to her. She watched him closely, but didn’t try and stop him either. “See? That wasn’t so hard, now was it?” He leaned down and kissed her. A small one. His lips against hers. She didn’t pull away, so he nipped at her bottom lip until her mouth opened and she let him in. His tongue moved slowly over hers, savoring the taste of her. She tried to pull her arms away, but he held them tight, moving them so he had them flat against the wall over her head. He pinned her with his lower body, his knee sliding in between her thighs.
She moaned and he knew he had her.
What in hell was she doing? Had she lost her mind? Was she actually making out with the Viking in the stairwell of the biotech school? This was definitely a new low. It was early, but there were already professors and students everywhere. Sooner or later, they’d get caught. This was insane. She was insane. How exactly could she expect to get tenure at the school if she got caught getting all hot and bothered with some guy in the stairwell?
She needed to tell him to stop. She needed to push him away. She definitely didn’t need to moan. In fact, she really had to stop moaning.
Conall pulled out of the kiss and leered at her. “Yeah. That’s what I consider letting me get close.”
If she had the strength, she would have punched him again. In fact, she was all ready to risk her knuckles just for the hell of it.
But before she could deck him, Conall kissed her cheek, stepped back, and pulled her out from under the stairs where he’d trapped her.
“Miss Kendrick. I hope I’m not interrupting anything.”
Conall and Miki looked behind them and up. At the top of the stairs stood the dragon lady herself. Professor Irene Conridge. An imposing forty-ish woman, wearing one of her plain blue suits and a pair of killer fuck-me pumps. The woman had always been a total dichotomy.
“Really. I know how busy your schedule is. And as all I’m doing is running an entire department, please feel free to keep me waiting for another fifteen minutes.”
Miki snatched her arms away from Conall and pushed past him. “Professor Conridge. I’m so sorry. I lost track of time…” Because I was busy getting fondled.
Grabbing her backpack, Miki yanked Conall’s hair as she ran by, but she got the feeling he would only see that as more foreplay. She charged up the stairs, but Conridge had already walked off.
Miki stopped at the top of the stairs and looked back at Conall, hauling her way over-packed bag onto her shoulders. “I don’t know how long I’ll be.”
“It’s okay. Take your time. I’ll be here.” Of course he would. Because he was torturing her.
Miki shook herself out of her stupor and charged off.