Grayslake_ Never Kiss a WolfBy: Eliza Gayle
Following a lead south to find a missing female shifter, Greer and Calder land in the middle of bear country. Grayslake, Georgia to be exact. Everything there seems innocent enough until their questions begin to ruffle fur and their oddball waitress at the local diner has a meltdown. Leaving Greer covered in an order of chili cheese fries and obsessed with one curvy, but clearly unstable woman.
Lily Hale moved to the small southern town to get as far away from her bleak, Alaskan backwoods family as she could. All she wants is a little color in her life and a taste of freedom. Getting involved with a wolf shifter seems like the last thing she should do.
Except she kissed him and now he won’t go away. She also can’t shake the feeling her life is about to implode. Is Greer the kind of man who’d stand up to her family of savage werebears and protect her? Of maybe she should become the kind of woman who does the standing all on her own.
Lily Hale stood in the middle of the diner on a Saturday night, surveying her various customers lingering over their meal. It still felt surreal to her that she lived here now instead of in the wilds of Alaska with her narrow minded family as far away from the real world as possible.
Her whole life she dreamed of a place like this and the possibilities that came with it. It was like moving from a black and white world to a full on in living color scenario. And this place came with as many quirky characters one could imagine, making it a lot easier for her to fit in.
She choked back a laugh at the picture she'd made when she first arrived. No money, no clothes other than the ones on her back, and no where else to go. Fortunately for her, Mia, the Itana of Grayslake took pity on her and convinced her husband, the Itan, to let her stay. From there things changed quickly.
The diner needed another waitress asap and since she had sort of had experience, they gave her a trial run. Thank God all those years of waiting on her family hand and foot paid off. The job turned permanent and recently she'd moved into her very own apartment. Maybe compared to the rest of the town the place was a dump, but if they could see where she'd come from...
This was a huge improvement.
"Order up!" the chef yelled, pulling her out of her wandering thoughts.
Lily walked over to the counter, grabbed the plates and strode over to table four to deliver them. Two older women from town were seated there, their heads bent and deep in discussion.
"Did you see both of them?" one asked.
"Of course I did, Doris. Hard to miss two strapping young men come waltzing into town."
Lily smiled. These two always came in on Saturday night to catch up on their gossip. It was cute and a good way for her to keep up with the goings on around here.
"I hear they are here looking for a missing woman. Such a sad thing when someone up and disappears like that, don't you think?"
Lily's heart froze. Literally skipped a beat as the words she overhead sank in.
A missing woman.
Oh God no.
By the time her heart started again, the two women were looking at her with quizzical looks.
"You okay, dear? You turned white as a sheet standing there."
She blinked her eyes several times and tried to focus on the women in front of her. It didn't work. The room spun and it didn't want to stop.
"Doris, she looks ready to faint."
Doris jumped to her feet. "Here, let me take these. You need to sit for a minute." The older woman removed the plates from her hand and set them down on the table. She then nudged Lily until she dropped into the booth.
"Are you sick?"
“When was the last time you ate?”
“Oh my God. Do you have food poisoning?”
Lily stared at the women peppering her with questions. She could no longer remember her name.
The two words kept replaying in her head over and over as sweat broke out across her skin. Air sawed in and out of her lungs but she couldn't catch her breath.
"What in the world? She's hyperventilating."
"Do you need to put your head between your knees?" Doris asked.
She nodded, still unable to string words together or do more than gasp.
"Oh you poor thing."
She felt a hand at her back pushing her forward and Lily dropped her head obediently.