Thaddeus Esax has a grumpy werewolf problem. For a year, he’s been mated to Sandulf Hunter, a ghost werewolf he brought back from the dead without meaning to. It’s been great. Thad’s been happy, and he believed Sandy was too. But Sandy has been sulking for more than a week, and Thad fears their relationship isn’t going as well as he believed.
The problem with being mated to a ghost is that said ghost never can leave your side, and therefore it’s extremely hard to keep secrets. Thaddeus wants to surprise Sandy, to cheer him up, but to do that, he has to trick him into believing they’re doing something they’re not.
Telling Sandy they’re having a Halloween party doesn’t go over well, but how do you trick a ghost? By making him believe he’ll be dressed up as a pirate for an evening, of course.
Publisher: JMS Books, LLC
Tropes: Fated Mates, Interspecies Romance
Word Count: 9000
Languages Available: English
He could never be more than a hundred and fifty feet away from Thaddeus, and unless Thaddeus shot energy into him, Sandy was invisible to the world.READ MORE
When Thaddeus gave him an unimpressed look, Sandy concealed his teeth. What the hell was he doing? It wasn’t Thaddeus’s fault he was dead. He took a deep breath, despite not needing to breathe. “Where are we going?”
“We’re getting Halloween decorations, then we’re heading to the station. I need to talk to Elora about a thing.”
Sandy held in a sigh. “A thing?”
“Ah, yeah, we’re having a party.” Thaddeus grimaced.
“We’re having a party?” Sandy spoke slowly. He wasn’t in the mood for a fucking party.
“Yup, for Halloween, and I need to speak to Elora about… a thing.”
A thing? Sandy sighed.
Thaddeus grinned, and Sandy’s heart somersaulted. His mate. He wanted to kiss him, touch him, apologize for having been an ass the last few days, but as he opened his mouth to speak, the car behind them honked.
“Oops.” Thaddeus grimaced and got them rolling.
Sandy sat back. He could drive. If Thaddeus made him solid, he could drive, but since he was dead, he didn’t have a driver’s license anymore. Apart from Thaddeus, he didn’t have anything. “I’m not in the mood for a party.”
“Respectfully, dear, I don’t give a fuck. I’ve had enough of you sulking. I know you’re feeling sorry for yourself, but I have to live with you too, you know? I’m sorry your life didn’t turn out the way you intended it to. Being killed messes things up, I get that, but I wasn’t the one who killed you, so I don’t see how I should be the one being punished.”
Thaddeus’ words were like a whip.
“We’re having a party. You’re gonna smile, and you’re gonna be polite and act as if you still want to be alive—”
“You’re gonna act like you still love me—”
“And that everything is peachy. Understand?”
“Thaddeus, I love you.”
Thaddeus snorted and focused on the road. Sandy could’ve sworn he was blinking faster than normal. Fuck.
“Let’s get some pumpkins, yeah?”
Shit. He had to make this right. “Thaddeus—”
“Not now, Sandy. I know things are rocky, I’m not as oblivious as most think, but I can’t have this discussion in the car, okay?”
“Things are not rocky!”
“You haven’t touched me in over a week. Should I remind you, you’re a shifter? You touch all the fucking time. You don’t come to bed anymore, so don’t tell me we’re not in trouble.” Thaddeus rubbed his eyes in an angry gesture.
“We’re not in trouble. I needed to think.” Pace. He’d paced the living room like the trapped animal he was. Sandy didn’t sleep. He didn’t dream. He didn’t eat or drink. He didn’t need to breathe. But normally, he spent the night in bed with Thaddeus, reveling in being close to his mate.
He glanced at Thaddeus. His eyes were glassy and his grip on the steering wheel tight. Shit. He hadn’t realized how much his brooding was affecting Thaddeus.
“I love you. I will never have to act as if I love you because I always will, okay?”
Thaddeus didn’t reply, and Sandy halted a sigh.
“I love you, and I never want to be away from you, understand? I’ve been sulking because I wish I had more control over my life, but never think I would want to trade the life I have with you for something as trivial as going for a run in the woods or to go hunting or… anything.”
When Thaddeus didn’t reply, he bit the inside of his cheek. “So, a party, you say?” God, he didn’t want a party. And they did not need more pumpkins, bats, spiderwebs or whatever else Thaddeus had in mind. The house already looked like a haunted house exhibition—equipped with a real ghost and all. “Who is coming?”
“The guys from work—”
“Really? I thought Ric was going to the cabin.” He brought his family up there every Halloween.
“Change of plans. Ric’s on call during the weekend and the mountains are too far away should something happen. Lots of crazy wizards out on Halloween, you know.” Thaddeus stared at the road, and Sandy had the feeling he was being lied to. He couldn’t argue the crazy wizard part, though. He’d been killed on Halloween, and last year, he’d been brought back on Halloween. Soul Eaters and Angel Makers and whatever else Thaddeus called them.
In the future, he’d suggest he and Thaddeus go on vacation over Halloween. To somewhere warm and sunny where there were no underground tunnels or crazy warlocks.COLLAPSE