“Not that we could see,” Indigo reported, very conscious of the living heat of Drew’s body as he pressed up behind her—so he could look at the screen. “Silvia did find something metallic earlier today. It could’ve come from anywhere, however. There’s a high chance it was washed down by the rivers.”
“No harm in the techs having a look at it anyway.” Judd made a note. “Threat assessment?”
“Low,” Indigo said. “I don’t see any reason to change our plans. Drew?”
“I’m with you. If they’d wanted to attack,” he added, “their best chance would’ve been tonight while they had the element of surprise, and they didn’t take it.”
Judd nodded. “I’ll organize some extra patrols in that area, starting from when you leave. Your presence there at the moment should act as a deterrent.”
Indigo nodded. “Make sure you send up only experienced men and women. The Psy are too dangerous for the novices to handle.”
“Agreed. Hawke will be joining you tomorrow, so you can discuss this further then.”
Hanging up after a couple more words, Indigo frowned. “It takes some kind of balls to come into our territory knowing how tough we are on intruders.” SnowDancer had a reputation for shooting first and asking questions of the corpses.
“That,” Drew said, slipping his arms around her waist and tugging her against him, “or sheer arrogance.”
Indigo didn’t reply straightaway, her brain cells fried by the wave of flame that licked up her body. For a moment, she considered turning her face to that of the beautiful wolf at her back and letting the heat take over. It would be good—that much was certain. He was big and gorgeous and playful and gave every indication that he’d be a generous, affectionate lover.
Tightening his arms around her, Drew propped his chin on her shoulder. “With all the Psy stuff that’s been happening this past year, I want to think something sinister is going on, but that feels like an overreaction to what was most likely a simple territorial violation.”
It was difficult to think past the pounding hunger of her pulse. “Nothing’s ever simple with the Psy,” she said, turning her head a little so she could feel his hair brushing against her cheek.
He kissed her on the jaw, a quick, almost absentminded caress. “True.”
“But yes, there is a chance they were just using the location as a safe meeting place.” Unable to resist, she reached up to touch his face. He pressed his beard-roughened jaw into her palm, and as her wolf hummed in contentment inside her, she remembered how much she’d missed this contact after they’d had their blowup. If she seduced him—and it made her guilty to even consider it—they’d be going right back there.
She treasured his friendship too much to risk it. Because no matter what, sex would change everything, create a subtle tension that nothing would ever erase. “We should get some sleep,” she said, not stopping to wonder why she was so certain she wouldn’t be able to remain friends with Drew after intimacy when she had perfectly cordial relationships with her former lovers. “Early morning wakeup tomorrow.”
Drew yawned and released her. The sudden chill caused by the absence of his body heat made goose bumps rise over her flesh.
“I want to talk to Hawke about Harley,” Drew said, moving to his own sleeping bag. “Kid’s not really fluctuating as much as everyone thinks—and from the looks of it, he’s promising to be a high-level dominant.”
“I was wondering if you’d picked that up.” She slipped inside the unzipped halves of her sleeping bag.
Drew scowled at the raised bumps on her arm. “You’re cold.”
“I’ll be fine.” She was an adult wolf—cold wasn’t something that really bothered her, even in human form. As for the emotional reasons behind the unexpected strength of her reaction—she wasn’t going there.
“And Silvia,” Drew murmured, his voice drowsy, “there’s something about her.”
“Hmm. She’s a maternal dominant.” The girl would be an anchor for the pack once she gained a little more confidence.
She thought about telling him not to use that nickname, but then he curled his body around hers, sliding one arm and leg under the top flap of her sleeping bag, and she decided to let it go for tonight . . . and allowed sleep to tug her under.
Hawke turned up at camp early the next morning—but he wasn’t alone. “Andrew,” drawled the lissome young female he’d brought with him, “so this is where you’ve been hiding.”
“Maria—” Drew’s words of welcome were cut off when the petite but curvy woman jumped up and planted her plump, ruby red lips smack-bang on his, her legs wrapping around his waist as he caught her beneath the thighs.
Indigo narrowed her eyes at her alpha, unable to erase the image of Drew’s fingers closing over Maria’s taut flesh. “You brought me another camper?” Catty, she thought, that was catty.
A gleam in those pale eyes, but his tone was even as he said, “Maria’s a soldier, as you very well know, and she’s a capable one.” Hawke looked over to where the kids were grinning and wolf-whistling at Drew and Maria. “I thought it’d be good experience for her to come up here, spend some time coaching the younger kids.”
Drew was putting the girl on her feet now, having broken the kiss—though his hands remained on her tiny waist. Color burned hot and bright over his cheekbones, and Indigo wanted to believe it was embarrassment, not desire. Except that he was a healthy young male, and Maria of the big br**sts, flashing dark eyes, and lush h*ps was giving him some hotly explicit signals, her hands splayed on his chest, all but openly petting.