“I don’t know why you never believe me. I really won’t break.” He stood up and pulled me against him. “I’m a werewolf,” he whispered in my ear.

I didn’t have time to laugh before an arm wrapped around my middle, ripping me away from Chris. Dastien set me on my feet, and turned—arms swinging. His fist met Chris’ face. Chris flew through the air again, but this time the crack echoed through the gym when his head slammed into the wall.


Dastien lunged toward Chris. His hand wrapped around Chris’ neck as he lifted him off the ground and rammed him into the wall. Chris hung limply.

“Shit!” I ran to them and yanked at Dastien’s hand, trying to pry his fingers from Chris’ neck. “Someone help!” The gym was quiet. Perfect. They’d just as soon let the boys kill each other as help me. “Let. Him. Go. Now!” I put all the force of my will into the words.

Dastien’s eyes burned bright yellow. He took a deep breath and let go. Chris slid to the ground. A little line of blood dribbled down his neck.

I knelt next to Chris and laid him flat. “Wake up. Please. Wake up, now. Chris! It’s not funny this time.” He wasn’t waking up. “Someone get some help!” No one was doing anything., and I didn’t know any first aid. Especially werewolf first aid.

Chris’ eyelids fluttered.

“Chris? Can you hear me?”

“Werewolf. Remember?” he said. I could barely hear his scratchy voice. “We heal fast.”

Now that I could breathe again, I got up and shoved Dastien. “You could have killed him!” All I got in response was a growl. Dastin’s gaze stayed trained on Chris.

I reached a hand down to help Chris to his feet. Dastien’s growl grew to a roar.

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Chris dropped my hand like it was on fire. “Shit, dude. What’s your problem?”

Dastien stalked toward him, and I blocked his way. A second later, water splashed all over Dastien.

Meredith peeked from behind him. “Did I hit you, Tess?” She held a large plastic bucket.

“No. Still dry.” Mostly.

Dastien’s shirt was soaked through. It clung to every muscle. He shook, spraying cold water over all of us, and my tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth.

Fuck. I finally got the whole wet T-shirt contest thing.

I didn’t breathe as Dastien walked over to Chris, ready to step in between them if Dastien got violent again. He held his hand out. “Sorry.”

Chris took the hand and got to his feet. “No big deal.”

Dastien walked to the door of the gym. “Class is over,” he said before the door slammed behind him.

“I’m just going to check on him,” Imogene said.

Meredith laughed. “Good luck with that one.”

Imogene shot her a dirty look and quickly strode out of the gym after Dastien. I almost felt sorry for her. Almost. I caught Shannon’s glare. Her arms were crossed, but she stayed rooted to her slice of mat. If she wasn’t my friend before, this was so not going to win her over. Oh well. I was used to no friends. The fact that I had Meredith was awesome.

And I had a Dastien, whatever that meant.

Adrian was the only one to move as he took a few quick steps to close the distance. He inspected Chris’ head. “Blood’s just surface. It’s already healed.”

Chris grinned. “See. I’m just fine.” The grin faded. “He snuck up on me. Damn it. No one’s snuck up on me in forever.”

“That’s why he’s the best,” Meredith said. “Good thing I got the bucket. Looked like he was going for your throat.”

“Thanks, Mer.” They high-fived. “I totally owe you one.”

“Speaking of buckets, where did you get it?” I asked.

Meredith pointed behind her. “There are always a few filled up in the room in case someone gets out of hand while we’re sparring. But it’s usually Dastien who dumps it over the student’s head. Took a second for me to realize I needed to get it.” She put her arm around Chris’ waist. “Sorry.”

“You did fine. No one expected Dastien to lose it. He’s usually so calm.”

They stared at me. It was too much, especially with the rest of the class already staring. I took a step back. I had zero desire to know what they were thinking.

“Do you know what’s up with him?” Chris asked.

I studied the mats. “Not a clue.” My voice was a little too high pitched.

The door slammed and Dastien walked back to us with a mop. “Everyone out.” Power rolled through the gym, giving me goose bumps. “You four can stay,” he said to me, Chris, Adrian and Meredith.

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