Despite an end to two thousand years of conflict with the Daughters of Isis, jackal shifter Hector still distrusts the witches. But he cannot deny his growing hunger for Rana, a beautiful and gentle priestess who soothes his anger and awakens his passions as no other ever has.
As a healer, Rana is working tirelessly to find a way to protect the jackals from a deadly curse—and restore the honor of her bloodline. As a woman, she cannot resist surrendering to her desire for Hector, the powerful and virile second in command. But when her secret is revealed, will their new bond be strong enough to survive the truth?
“There, that should do it.” Rana smoothed the bandage in place, then smiled up at the jackal shifter. “You can take the wrap off tomorrow morning and apply the ointment again. After lunch, feel free to shift.”
“Thank you, priestess.” The young jackal smiled, holding his bandaged forearm. “It feels better already. You surely have a magical touch.”
“You’re welcome,” she said, grabbing her chart to make a few final notes. The young guard—at least, he seemed young—had entered the infirmary with a six inch gash in his arm, given to him by another guard during combat training. “How long does it normally take you to heal from your wounds when you shift into your jackal form?”
“Well, usually—” Suddenly he stiffened, eyes widening. A whimper seeped from his throat as he dropped his gaze.
Concerned with his abrupt change in demeanor, Rana reached out to touch his carotid artery. “Are you all right?”
Power rolled through the infirmary a split second before a warning growl did. Rana dropped her hand, suppressing a shiver as she recognized the distinctive signature of the magical energy weighing down the air. He was here.
She turned to see Hector, the jackals’ second-in-command, filling the doorway. The large jackal growled again. “Remain away from your post for much longer and I can guarantee you will be in desperate need of a healer.”
The words were soft, almost negligent, but only a fool would ignore the threat woven in them. The young guard was no fool. “My apologies, captain, I’ll return straightaway.” He beat a hasty retreat, Hector’s glower boring into him.
The shifter captain stepped into the exam room, turning the full weight of his silvery-green gaze to Rana. She stopped, stared, her duties forgotten.
Hector was stunning—in looks, in effect. Six feet, three inches of solid, sleek muscle, olive skin highlighting his Greek-Egyptian heritage, and gray-green eyes beneath thick brows and dark brown hair that seemed perpetually wind-tossed. She knew that he was roughly two thousand years old, and his power was potent, heady.
Awareness tingled along her nerve endings, awareness of him. Every time she saw him, her breath caught in her throat, her blood heated and her palms grew damp. A month into her stay at the jackal compound and she was still struck mute by his nearness. He made her feel like a girl in the first blush of womanhood, not a priestess over three hundred years old.
Most of the Sons of Anubis were politely distant in a could-rip-your-throat-out sort of way. They all seemed fiercely protective and focused on their duties, something that she, a Daughter of Isis, could appreciate.
Hector, however, was…more. Large and lethal, he radiated danger and intensity even when standing still. The infirmary, six large beds and two cages flanked by new state-of-the-art equipment, seemed too small to contain the full force of his energy. She only had to look at him to know that he fiercely committed to everything he did and accepted nothing less than a successful outcome.
He wore a simple white t-shirt and dark cargo pants, but on him they were a king’s raiment. The white cotton emphasized his broad shoulders, defined arms, taut abs. Isis have mercy.