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Sent Beast Mate(Beast Mates, #3)

By:Milana Jacks


Chapter One





Reagan



Hushed voices awoke me from a dead sleep, and I turned my head to look at the light coming from underneath the door. Mike’s watch on my wrist read three in the morning.

“Reagan?” Hanna, my bedmate, whispered.

With our bodies crammed on a single bed in a tiny trailer and facing each other, I couldn’t safely roll my eyes without offending her. She was one scared puppy, but man, the girl talked a lot. “Shhh, I’m trying to hear,” I said.

“Me too,” she said. “Are they coming?”

The putrid stink of tobacco and alcohol filled the trailer as Douglas, one of the Men of Earth, stumbled inside. I closed my eyes, my back to the door.

Hanna and I pretended to sleep. We’d been pretending for several nights while listening to the men get drunk in the circus tent next to the trailer. Late in the night, they’d wobble their drunk asses across the camp, debating which one of us girls they’d take.

They hadn’t taken any of us. Yet. But we all knew pretending to sleep soon wouldn’t be enough. And I’d seen the way Douglas looked at Hanna, a pretty girl with long red hair, dark skin, and dove-brown eyes. A perfect victim. Young, naïve, and left without family.

Men of Earth had taken over our camp here in Butt-fucking Nowhere, New Mexico. Apparently, their transport broke, and they sought shelter. They saw our circus camp. We took them in. They didn’t leave. And neither did the five girls they brought with them. I’d kept Hanna safe since Men of Earth had taken over our camp, held Mike, the man who’d raised me, hostage, and killed more than half the performers, the same people I’d grown up around.

“Crawl out of bed,” Doug said. “I know you ain’t sleeping.”

This was the day. I knew it and so did Hanna, and next to me on our shared bed, she started snoring. Under my closed eyelids, I rolled my eyes and scooted closer to her. Hanna didn’t know what was good for her. The snoring would only serve to piss him off. I kept my back to him but heard his heavy footsteps. He’d grown a belly in the past two weeks. Even the pants I’d expanded at the waist just last week didn’t button anymore. The gluttonous beast.

His palm hit the wall above us, and he leaned over our bed, his knees brushing my ass. The other hand threaded through Hanna’s red locks, and he bent over me to sniff a strand of her hair. “Clean and smelling like a lady. You know I gave you that expensive oil you’re using, so won’t you pay me some respect in return? I know you’re awake.”

He dropped her hair and continued at my ear, “If you don’t leave, I’ll take you instead. Get out.”

“I hear Hunters of Mayhem are close,” I said and turned to lie on my back, my eyes trained on his brown ones. “Is that why you never made it to Texas? You’re scared they’ll follow you, find your big safe house if they catch your trail? Or did your boss tell ya to hide out here?”

“Shut up, slut. You should mind your business.”

The men got so loud while drinking, everyone within a mile radius could have heard their story. Except we were the only people out here. “You want a taste of us before they raid this place and make sausages out of you, eh?” I wiggled my eyebrows. “’Cuz ya know they will. All y’all Men of Earth are dead when they ravage that big yellow tent you’re hiding in.”

“Where did you hear that?”

“Men who drink, talk. They say your men went after Alpha Beast’s pair. They say he brought a savage from their home planet and let him loose. They say Mayhem’s ruthless, takes all the goods, takes all the women and kids, kills all else. No man left behind, but not in a good way. When he comes here, you gonna die.”

The back of his hand whacked across my cheek.

My head snapped to the side. Heat warmed my cheek, and it swelled. I smiled. I wouldn’t put myself in trouble for anyone else, but this young girl reminded me of myself when I first came here. Homeless and without any family. Ol’ Mike had been here for me, and I believed in paying forward. I felt a kinship with Hanna, even though I knew little about her. Besides, she was far too fragile to be raped. Me? Well, he could try. Still, my face throbbed, and I winced as Douglas lifted his hand again.

Next to me, Hanna whispered, “She doesn’t know what she’s saying, Doug. She’s a little dumb.”

“There you are, my sweet girl.” His raised hand found its way to her cheek, and he stroked it slowly. I almost gagged.

Hanna sat up and kissed the hand that had hit me. One spaghetti strap slipped down her shoulder, and she quickly fixed it while giving me a look. I knew what she meant. She didn’t want to go, but she didn’t want me to get in trouble either.

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