NOMINATED FOR BEST NOVELLA OR SHORT STORY IN THE 2020 PARANORMAL ROMANCE GUILD REVIEWER'S CHOICE AWARDS Taken from the arms of her mother, a girl is raised by a family so alien that she hardly knows how to describe them. They are incredibly feral. She is anything but. As life with them becomes more and more bizarre, she has no choice but to incur the wrath of the pack and plead for her release--risking her life to ask it.
Much to her surprise, but even more to his, her chosen mate devises a plan to get her home. It involves considerable deception but if ultimately successful, makes it possible for her to return to the mother and the home she so desperately misses. The plan succeeds. It has, however, unintended consequences since his actions cause her to question his motives and what it is to be his mate.
She leaves him, nevertheless, returning home with her faithful dog as her travelling companion. Once there, she has a chance encounter with someone--a man who has a surprising connection to her past. But their joyful and unexpected reunion is short-lived. And in the aftermath of the tragedy that occurs, they learn family is what you make it, the people who love you most are the ones who make the greatest sacrifices, and home is where you belong.
“I was in a bad place in my head for a while, you know?” Jeff asked. “And then I met Jen. I was back in college, finishing up my master’s degree. She changed my life—the way I thought about what happened to you. I loved her because of it. But she always wanted children. I didn’t. I didn’t want to risk bringing a child into a world like this. I don’t think she ever forgave me for that. It was like she thought the memory of you was stronger than my love for her. Like if I wanted children, then that was proof I loved her.”
I nodded as if I understood. But I don’t think I did.
Jeff hugged me tightly. He said, “She just didn’t understand that love doesn’t have to be proved. It just is.”
Then I understood.
A quick, can be read in under an hour, story about alien shifters, the human girl they abducted and how the abduction touched the lives of everyone involved--including the dog.