The Wolf by J.R. Ward



“I’m talking about helping you free those people, no matter what their species.” She stepped off from him. “I’m dead, technically. I have no existence in Caldwell.”

“A ghost?”

“That’s right, I’m a ghost.” She smiled and pointed to him. “You’re a wolven and a vampire. And I’m a ghost. It’s true love.”

He recoiled like she’d shocked the hell out of him.

“Yes,” she whispered. “I’m still in love with you.”

“So you were in—”

“Yes, I was. And I am.” She shrugged. “The thing is, survivors also need to believe in the future. And I’d like you to be my future. I know so much of this seems impossible, but let’s do it together. Let’s figure out the plan—I have training, I’m a great shot—”

“I know that already. And after what you did to that Fontaine guy in his front foyer, you’re also really good in a bar fight. You’ve got fists of steel.”

“You say the sweetest things.” She moved back in against him, tilting into his body, and putting her arms around his neck. “Let’s face it, you need me.”

“No shit.” He lowered his mouth to hers. “I totally need you, Rio, and I love you—I don’t understand how you feel this way, too. And honestly, you don’t know what you’re getting into.”

“When do we ever?” She stroked his hair back. “Life is a series of unexpected surprises, some good, some bad . . . some life-changing, whether we know it at the time or not. And that night I met you under the fire escape? My life was destined to change—and now, if you’re not in it, it’s empty. Give me a future, Luke, it’s what this survivor needs.”

“Well, how can I argue with that?”

They kissed deeply, tenderly. And when they finally pulled apart, she knew, without a doubt, that she had found the man of her dreams.

Wolf.

Wolven. And vampire. Whatever, like those details mattered.

“Are you sure about this?” he asked.

“Yes.”

“Then let’s go back to Walters and fuck some shit up.”

Rio laughed out loud as he led her over to the Monte Carlo, where, like a gentleman, he held her door open for her, and helped her into her seat. When he came around and got behind the wheel, they linked their hands and held on.

“Back to Walters,” she ordered.

With that command, they were off into the night, on a quest of justice and liberation.

And true love.