The barely lit corridor reeked of mold and the faint trace of urine. The thunder of the fans raging above echoed off the cement walls. The painted floor beneath Caleb’s feet was damp. The words escaped his lips before he could bite them back.
“If that stupid motherfucker ever gets me another fight in a place like this, I’ll rip his head off.”
He glanced down at the athletic tape still tightly bound around his hands. They were stained with the other fighter’s blood. It stirred up an ancient need inside of him, one deep and primal. He fought the urge to run his tongue along the woven material, just for a taste.
He’d tossed his gloves in his duffle seconds after he beat the guy they pitted him against in the cage to a bloody pulp. He didn’t get to savor the fight. He had to make quick work of his opponent and get the hell out of there. He didn’t have time to dress. He’d have to drive home in just his fight shorts. Three hours of my cup digging into my cock will be lots of fun.
He started at the loud chirp coming from his bag. He didn’t break stride as he dug in the pocket and pulled free his cell. “What?”
“Where the hell are you, Caleb?”
“I’m on my way, Josiah. The show started late.”
“The sun is setting. You’ll never make it home in time. Do you have any idea how fucked up this is? Do you realize how many people you’re putting in danger?”
“Do you know how fast my old truck can go, big brother? I’ll be there.”
“Why did you even go? You need to let Micah book your fights, not that piece of shit manager you have. How many times do we all have to tell him to not schedule you to fight on a full moon?”
“I’m not backing out of a fight. Unlike you and the rest of the spawn I call brothers, I’m not content to fight in these small-time promotions. I’ll make it big. I’ll be world champion.”
“Great, big shot. Let’s just make sure you don’t kill any innocents on the way. Bury yourself in the woods, Caleb. Deep in the woods. And stay there until morning, got it? Or better yet, prevent the change. Just stay fucking human.”
“I’m not dealing with the pain afterward. I’ll be home, Josiah.”
Caleb ended the call, gripping the cell phone tight in his hand. It wasn’t like he wasn’t under enough stress right now. He didn’t need his older brother ripping him a new one. Again. It seemed like that was Josiah’s favorite hobby as of late. He wasn’t on anyone else’s case as much as he was on his.
He breathed a sigh of relief as the double doors that led to the parking lot came into view. One was propped open. The fiery blaze of sunset painted the drab gray and black of the corridor. Caleb picked up the pace but stopped suddenly as his name was called. A pudgy man with a nearly bald head appeared behind him, huffing like a steam engine. Caleb shook his head and stormed off. “Willy, I don’t have time right now. I’ve got to go. Call me in a week.”
Despite his warning, the manager still hunted him down. “What’s your hurry, Caleb? We never got to talk after you stepped out of the octagon.”
“I told you not to schedule my fights on days like this. Never. My family has told you the same thing.”
“Yeah, full moons. I don’t get it. What? Are you going to change into a vampire?” Willy managed a laugh despite his heaving breath. “Or a werewolf?”
Caleb stopped, spun around on his toe, and glared. “You’re the biggest dumb shit I know. Werewolf? Really? Call me in a week. I need to get home.”
“Austin Graves wants to fight you.”
Caleb gaped. He couldn’t talk. Screw the sun. Screw the moon. This was huge. Finally, he was able to struggle out words. “Pardon me?”
“Austin Graves, the welterweight champion, just called you out.”
“You’ve decimated your last three opponents. As he said himself, ‘it’s time to put the pup in his place.’”
The shrill cry of a bat brought Caleb to his senses. “Fine. Whatever. I’ll do it. Call me in a week.”
He didn’t wait to hear another word from his manager. He had already wasted too much precious time. His pace turned into a sprint as he hit the parking lot. It took way too long for him to find his old beat-up Ford, but once he spotted it, he raced to it. Tossing his duffle on the passenger seat, he hopped in and fired it up. As he threw it into reverse, he locked the doors. That should buy me some time.
The city of Duluth, Minnesota, faded away into cornfields as Caleb tore down the highway. The all-too-familiar burn in his core ignited his muscles. It stole his breath. His heart raced out of control. Typically, he reveled in this. It was nearly as good as sex. But he was usually lying on his bed at home, not driving in the middle of nowhere.
“Shit. Josiah was right,” he muttered. He shot a look to the sky. Twilight overtook the sunset. Pinpoint dots of light peppered a darkening horizon. The sun was just a sliver of gold. The landscape was bathed in a pure white glow. He glanced out his rearview mirror to see the round curve of a celestial body rising.
The full moon.
Fuck. He was too late.
* * * *
Caleb struck the punching bag hanging in front of him. He threw another volley of punches at it. The dull thud on the canvas followed. He glanced over his shoulder to see if his younger brother, Joshua, had arrived so they could work on their jiu jitsu. Josh was less than a year younger than him. They were often referred to as “the twins.” And right now, Josh was late. He huffed, hopped from one foot to the other, and started again.
He thought working himself until he was exhausted would help him forget Meg. Her car was gone when he got back from his run. He’d expected as much. And he knew she was never coming back. To be brutally honest, had someone told him they were a werewolf, he would have run, too. So she left and I threw myself into my training. Now it’s day two and nothing’s changed. I still need her.
His memories flew back to the night she stayed with him, the way her ass nestled against his hips as he fucked her, the way her golden hair flowed down her shoulders, the way her voice whimpered as she spoke his name each time she arched back against him. He was only looking for gratification, but she was so beautiful, he needed more. He needed her soul, and he was going to take it. Because she already has gotten to mine.
He’d spread her out on her back and locked gazes with her. He had never noticed how clear her sapphire blue eyes were. All he knew was that he was drowning in them and he didn’t want to be rescued. He wanted to hold her in his arms and lay soft kisses on her flesh. He wanted her beside him every night. He never wanted to let her go. He’d only felt like this once before, but the feelings were never this intense. Maybe it’s best she’s gone. With me, she’d die here.
He turned as the door opened. Instead of Joshua, Littlefoot stepped inside. The older man offered him a gentle smile. “How are you, young Caleb?”
Caleb threw a jab, doubling the bag. “Fucking peachy, Littlefoot. What brings you to my dark little corner of the world?”
“I’m here to speak to your mother about next week’s arrangements.”
“Mom has been visiting her sister during the full moon for the last twenty years. How much coordinating do you need to do?”
“This time there is more than Evelyn visiting Edith and Edna.”
“Wouldn’t count on it.”
“Have you spoken to your mate, Caleb?”
Caleb stopped punching and turned to Littlefoot. “Sorry. She hasn’t made it on my speed dial yet. So no. Not since she called me delusional for saying I was a werewolf and went tearing out of here.”
“Give her time.”
“She can have all the time in the fucking world. I don’t want her here. I don’t need a mate. I’m happy by myself.”
“It doesn’t work that way.”
“Watch me. Better yet, your people are the mystics. Figure out how to reverse this curse.”
“Mating is not a curse, Caleb,” Littlefoot chided.
“It is to me.”
“How is having Meg as your mate a curse?”
Caleb stopped and turned around. “Because I think I’m falling in love with her. And that can’t happen. I’ve already fallen in love once and she died because of me. So find a way to release it or I will.”
Preorder your copy of Welterweight here -
Barnes and Noble: https://goo.gl/psJHYL
Welcome back to Tuesday Tales! This week's word prompt is "lake". This week I have the third book of the Hallow Brothers Series, Heavyweight.
Don't forget to check out the other great Tuesday Tales!
**Warning...this excerpt contains adult language.**
“Whenever. I’m good. Are you going to tell me who I’m fighting?”
Micah sighed. “Bowser McNamara.”
“That guy is a fucking lunatic,” Samuel near shouted. “Are you trying to get me killed?”
“He’s a lunatic because he’s out of control. Train smart. You’ll knock him out.”
Micah waved him towards the long building that housed their gym, office, dining room and kitchen. “Let’s go get it signed so I can get it back to Leroy.”
Samuel motioned towards Micah’s cabin. It was on the other side of his opposite of Caleb and Meg. “What about your office? Isn’t Abraham working right now? The little shit can barely concentrate as it is.”
Micah shrugged as he started toward the structure. “Eve is on my computer. She’s obsessed with Momma’s amulet. I guess I would be too if my friend’s had been killed over it. Pretty much all she does is eat, sleep, shut and hack into websites looking for information. Oh, and fuck me senseless. Can’t forget that one. It’s the most important.”
Samuel jogged to catch up to him. “Has she found anything?”
“She got some sketchy footage of whoever lives in that house in Connecticut. It came off a neighbor’s security camera but was across a man made lake. The distance is enough to distort it a bit. She stayed up during that last full moon while we were at the North Cabin. It’s grainy. She’s hoping to find some photo enhancing software so we can see who the fuck lives there.”
Samuel chuckled. “Dude, your wife is scary. Hacking into someone’s security system?”
Micah laughed. “Yeah. Tell me about it. I think I might have married me a psychopath.”
“Hot computer hacking biker chick who used to strip. Sounds pretty accurate.”
Don't forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales!