The Gathering Night
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The cold Wyoming wind swept across the brazen prairie and deep into his heart. He lifted his face to the gathering Night. It was that time again.
Two nights later he returned home, limping and bruised to his core. How had Grandfather described it? A pain of the soul, not of the body. Sometime after the Night he’d tangled with something tougher than he was. He searched his memory, but found nothing but black fog and blood. Always the blood.
In any event, his leg was broken and well chewed up. He would be getting no work done it for at least a few weeks. For a normal man, this would be months, for him it was only a few weeks. A convenience he would rather have done without, all things considered. His ranch was small, a tiny operation that would not survive without someone to tend the stock. He growled deep in his throat, giving vent to the anger of the white in his heritage. Fuck.
Mariah eyed the newcomer curiously over her coffee cup. She’d only been in town six months, but this man, she’d never seen. She’d been told that he was as native to this place as the grass was. His roots went as far back as the Lakota themselves. He was ruggedly masculine and supremely capable. His features were as ageless as the mountains around them. His hair resembled not so much anything as a black and gray shock of fur reaching down the length of his back. If it weren’t for the whiteness of the cast and the crutches, she’d never have guessed he had a weakness.
“Honey, that’s Wring.” Sally, the waitress who’d been her coworker until that fateful crash two days ago, whispered.
Mariah looked at an old white-haired coot. He grinned toothlessly back at her. As far as she could tell, he never left that stool at the diner accept to hitch up his britches.
“No, with the crutches.”
“You said he was old.” Mariah poked Sally.
“Well, he is. I guess. No one round here recollects when he was born.” Sally shrugged, disinterested.
“Anyway, he’s old enough. You want a, he’s the only one left who might hire you.”
“I haven’t been that bad.”
“Good luck honey.”
Mariah took one last fortifying sip of her coffee and watched Wring stare morosely at the chipped tabletop. He was in the diner to hire a hand. She knew for a fact that she was the only one applying for the job.
Wring could feel her eyes on him, this stranger. Unfortunately, she was the only person who’d shown him any interest in the last three hours. This was his second trip to town, if this widening in the road could be called “town,” in the last week for this purpose. No one wanted the job.
The woman stood up and smoothed her faded jeans. She fixed a bright smile on her face, then strode purposefully toward him. Wring slunk down lower in his seat, hoping she’d pass him by. He wanted no truck with the woman. Any woman.
“Hi.” She said brightly, sticking out her hand. “I’m here about the job.”
“Jobs closed.” He grunted. Her scent invaded his lungs with every searing lungful. He tried not to breathe, but his traitorous nostrils flared. She was a city slicker that wouldn’t be missed. His father had done it. He slammed the lid on the desire threatening to boil up.
He was not his father.
“Wonderful, when do I start?”
“You don’t. Hirin’ a local man. Not you.”
“You have to hire me. I’m the only person desperate enough to work for you.”
Wring hadn’t expected such brutal honesty, not from such an artificial source.
She sat across from him and leaned across the table. Those brilliantly golden, unblinking eyes bored into her. The fine hairs on the nape of her neck stood up. She was in the presence of a predator. bahis firmaları One that had the only job in town. “Look. I’ve been fired from every employer in a fifty-mile radius. I’m getting desperate here. If I can’t work for you, I’m going to starve.”
“What makes you think I won’t fire you?”
“You need me.”
“The job is short term.”
“You need me and I need this job.”
As much as he loathed to admit it, she was right. His stock needed tending and there was no one to tend it. Twenty three days left until the Night. He eyed her speculatively. He would be healed enough to send the woman packing by then. He had no choice. “Pays a hundred a week plus room n board. You have to be gone by the 18th. Get your gear.” Wring had a feeling that this was the stupidest thing he’d done since his visit to Denver.
Mariah blinked and sat up. “Don’t you even want to know my qualifications?”
Wring heaved himself to his feet, arranging his hands on the crutches as carefully as a wolf arranging paws on thin ice. “You said it. I need you. You got two hands and two good legs. Hope you got some muscle.”
Her new employer tipped his hat to Sally and limped from the small diner. He put himself into the front seat of his pick up truck and leaned back, hands folded on his belly, snoozing. Mariah dropped her jaw and traded glances with Sally.
“Good luck honey.” Sally said. “Hope you know what you’re doing. That Wring, well, he’s a strange one.”
Wring lived at the tail end of the world. Mariah dropped her bag on the floor in the small cabin and looked around. There was a huge fireplace, a small kitchen dining affair and a couch. Beyond that there were two doors, one was shut, the other opened enough to reveal a bed. Wring padded inside past her and stoked up the fire, graceful as a predator, even in crutches. Hanging across a chair in the corner, shrouded with dust was a snarling wolf’s head and skin. Mariah crossed to it, her fingers reaching out to sink into its black and silver fur. Wring’s voice lashed at her like a snarling whip. “Don’t touch that.”
“Why not? It’s beautiful.”
“Then why have it?” Her eyes clashed with his. His flicked away, towards the closed door.
“Facilities are in there. Don’t leave your female junk laying around. We start early t’morrow.” He said, then slammed the bedroom door between them.
“That’s it? No W-4? No welcoming speech?” She moved her female junk to the couch. “Doesn’t he even want to know what my name is?” She heard his bed creak, his boots hit the floor, and nothing more. Fine. What a jerk. Mariah settled her things in, despite his crack about female junk. He couldn’t expect her to live like an animal. It took her some hunting to find another quilt to cover up with. Once done, she curled up on the couch and stared reflectively into the flames. The interesting threads her life had woven to bring her to this couch.
The stupid woman had finally fallen asleep. Wring eased to his feet and hobbled into his own living room, trying not to wake her. It had taken nearly an hour for the woman to shut up. She spoke to him, the walls, the fireplace, to God. He didn’t think she’d ever stop. He eased into the darkening room and sniffed, smelling nothing but the comforting scents of his cabin and that woman. He banked the fire for the evening and confronted his newest nemesis.
She was sprawled on his couch, face tilted towards the fire and hind end sticking up in the air. Her hair flopped all over the place, as wild as her tongue. The fine hairs on his body stood up at the thought of her tongue. He could give her more interesting things to with kaçak iddaa it than yap all the time. He stroked a fingernail down the length of her spine and growled deep in his chest when she arched into the caress. He palmed her derriere, testing it’s smooth surface.
He didn’t like her, didn’t want her anywhere near him, but he wanted to fuck her.
Mariah woke up when the heat of his hand left her rump. She rolled over onto her back, more asleep than anything, staring up into the darkened room. Her employer stood over her, his glowing golden eyes burning into her. Sitting up, she came all the way awake. She could still feel the pads of his fingers against her flesh, even though he was no longer touching her. Her nipples hardened and goose bumps rippled across her skin.
Whisper soft, only with his eyes, he touched her in ways she’d only dreamed about. Those molten gold eyes of his licked over her and just that quickly she was ready for him. His head moved, fast as wolf going for the throat, dipping into her. The rough surface of his tongue touched the point of her collarbone, then slowly licked to the intensely sensitive spot near her ear. She shivered at the feel of his hot breath in her ear.
“I’m going to fuck you.” He growled. She shut her eyes and moaned, spreading her legs without thinking. He was simply gone, without a sound or even a stirring in the air to denote his presence.
She opened her eyes, looking for any evidence that he’d been there. Her fingers found the wet spot on her panties, hardly proof that he’d been there, only proof that she wanted him. She rubbed her knuckles along her throat and felt the dampness. Mariah had never been one to let things develop on their own, something that landed her in trouble more often than not. She stood up and looked at the closed, forbidding door between them.
Once again that blasted woman did the last thing he’d expected. Wring shot bolt upright in bed when her soft footfalls paused at his door. He heard her swallow, then open the door. She paused a moment, her eyes searching him out in the darkness. He saw her just as clearly with his nose as he did with his eyes, possessing heightened senses that picked up her fear and arousal as clearly as any neon sign might broadcast them.
She crossed over to his bed slowly, carefully, feeling her way. She stopped within easy reach. “You’re going to fuck me now.” She stated plainly.
“Come to my bed Mariah.” His voice rumbled out from the depths of his chest, rubbing over her body. She skinned out of her t shirt and panties. She stood there naked in front of him, enjoying the erotic tension the gleaming slits of his eyes created as they looked at her.
“You have the most beautiful eyes.” She murmured, climbing onto the tall bed. Her knees sank deep into the quilts covering the bed. He smiled at her, his white teeth flashing in the sliver of moonlight. He pulled her down, across the bed with him. He nuzzled against the soft skin of her side, inhaling the sweet smell of her.
“How did you know my name?” She asked as her hair spilled across his bed.
He set his teeth into the dip of her waist, testing her and tasting her. She flinched, moaning. Wring rolled her onto her back and rubbed his cheek across her hard nipple until it prodded his lips. He took a deep breath full of her. She sank her fingers into his thick hair, holding him to her breast. He lapped long and lazily at her proffered delicacy. He shifted his attention to her other breast, scraping his teeth along the inner slope of her breast, then across the nipple.
She arched her back, her legs twitching the spreading apart for him. The musky kaçak bahis sweet smell of her sex abruptly invaded his nostrils, making him salivate. He pushed himself down, between her legs and sucked at her. His long tongue stabbed deep inside of her wet pussy, lapping at the core of her. The tips of his fingers grazed over her clitoris.
Mariah panted, pushing herself up against him. She looked down, between her legs, to where his mouth was nipping at her. His eyes, slitted and glowing from some inner fire she didn’t understand, latched onto hers. Wring prowled up the length of her body, lapping at her with his rough tongue as he went.
Wring halted, his body covering her completely, his mouth inches from her. He cock nudged at her pussy, pressing hotly against the wet, yielding lips. His voice was a feral snarl. “Put me inside of you.”
Reaching between them, she wrapped her fingers around his erection and pressed it to her, shifting and opening her legs more. He sank inside the tiniest of fractions, causing them both to groan into each other. He reared back and thrust forward heavily, his cock slipped between her fingers, plunging deep into her pussy. Letting go of his cock, she grabbed his buttocks, squeezing the firm, flexing muscles. He stroked his cock deeper inside, until he was fully sheathed within her.
Mariah opened her eyes, gasping. He was staring down into her, intense and wild as the wind she’d been named for. She wrapped her legs around him, pulling him deeper into her. Wring felt a part of himself opening under her eyes. The same part of him that had been in his father and driven his father insane. The lust enveloped him, wild and uncontrollable. Any thoughts of gentleness or care were lost in the onrush of his lust.
He nuzzled his lips against her neck, then sank his teeth into the tendon running from her neck to her shoulder, holding her steady to receive his heavy thrusts. She squealed at the sudden sharpness, the near pain of it. Her hips lifted against his, meeting his pounding stroke for stroke. Her breath came in short, mewling pants, his in explosive snarls. She hooked her fingers into claws, dragging the nails down his back from shoulders to his tautly muscled flanks. He reared back, oblivious to everything but the pounding in his balls, howling a long, undulating howl. Mariah shuddered in her own orgasm as he shot deep into her.
Wring eased to her side, his tongue lolling out to lick at her sweaty neck. Mariah wrinkled her nose at the ticklishness, already falling asleep. He grunted once, snuffling at her, before joining her.
Sometime later, the drafts in the house woke her up. Wring, she discovered, was a blanket hog. The parts of her pressed to his parts were toasty warm, the rest of her was turning into a Mariahsicle. Careful not to wake him, she slipped from the bed, fetching the blanket from the other room.
Wring’s eyes slitted open the instant her body tensed in wakefulness. He waited for her to settle down to sleep again, surprised when she left the bed instead. Padding silently after her, he watched her grab the quilt from the couch, then pause to warm herself by the glowing coals of the fire.
Mariah started to turn, intent on bedding down with him again. Instead, her eyes landed on the dusty wolfskin covering the unused chair in the corner. Intrigued, she picked her way to it, something in its marble-eyed gaze and snarling mouth drew her. Slowly, almost fearfully, she reached out a shaking hand to touch it.
“Don’t!” Wring’s sharp bark cut through her, making her nearly leap out of her skin.
“Why not? I’ve never touched a wolf before.”
He grunted and crossed to her with surprising speed, considering his broken leg. “It’s evil.”
“Why?” She pictured it killing cows or sheep just for the joy of killing. Every rancher’s nightmare.
“It’s my father.”
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