The next part of my Kiwi bear

And just a reminder that this might get frisky...

Soon they were speeding along the highway beside the huge lake. Lights rippled on its inky surface, and the trail of moonlight danced and fractured under the starry sky. His hand wandered to her nearest thigh and gave it an affectionate squeeze. Atarangi returned the favour, and then trailed her fingers down to his knee and back again. Or surely somewhat higher?

Adam grunted. “Trying to distract me, pretty girl? I’m on the home stretch of road now, so as long as we don’t hit a tree you can do that all you like.” He turned off the main highway beside a very rural looking mail-box. Stones began to rattle against the underside of the Jeep and the trees closed around them in a forbidding tunnel. “Don’t want to make it too welcoming,” he said in answer to her raised eyebrows. “If we keep the access looking rough, not many people bother coming as far as the lodge.” He switched the headlights to full for better visibility.

She gave his thigh a friendly squeeze. “I don’t remember this from last night.”

“You were pretty shocked, all things considered. I’m not surprised.”

The Jeep ploughed on for another minute or so.

“Do you…” She hesitated.

He glanced sideways. “Do I what?”

She stroked down to his knee. “I don’t mean just you. Do all of you prefer to be bears or men? Dex was a man last night.”

Adam moved his butt on the seat as her hand stroked higher again, thankful there was a little room left in his purposely chosen dress pants. Hell, he’d known she’d be turning him on, but this was ridiculous. He cleared his throat. “There’s a special button on the security system by the gate so we can let each other know someone non-Ursus has arrived.”

Again her eyebrows rose in enquiry.

“Non-bear,” he added. “Subgenus: Euarctos. Species: Americanus ... that’s me.”

“And your brothers?”

“Yeah—but not necessarily all our friends.”

Her hand smoothed up the length of his thigh again, and she said in a disbelieving tone, “Are you saying some are polar beans or pandas?”

Adam clung tightly to the steering wheel, wishing he could let go with one hand and keep her fingers right up high before she reversed direction again. But… rough road surface, tree-trunks only feet away. And he was driving fast because he really wanted to get her home. “Not pandas,” he sneered. “Those big softies don’t shift.”

“Oh. Really?” She gave a cheerful giggle. “I suppose they might shift into little Chinese men if they did.”

Adam let loose a huge guffaw. She was priceless. He loved her sense of humour. “Babe, shifters are never small,” he insisted, still chucking. “We need a certain body mass to conceal our bears. ‘Little’ doesn’t do it for us.”

“Little doesn’t do it for me, either,” she said, keeping her fingers right where he wanted them, and delicately investigating the fabric of his trousers.

He couldn’t help the growl of approval that filled the Jeep. She was such a wonderful earthy woman, and they were going to be stupendous together if he got lucky. It was all he could do to keep driving with her scent strong in his nostrils and her hand doing that. Then her sweet breath fanned his neck as she swayed toward him and dropped a kiss on his jaw.

“Nearly there,” he grated. Could he be any harder?

“I’m nearly there, too,” she teased. “You’ve made me feel so special tonight. Just like you made me feel special last night. But this is different.”

“Yeah, this time we can act on it…” He sent her a hopeful sideways glance as he slowed the Jeep and reached for the remote, beeping it so the electronic gates swept open.

“Aren’t you going to press the special button that says I’m not a bear?”

Adam dragged in a deep breath. “No-one else is getting a whiff of you tonight. It’s going to be straight to my lodge, garage door down, total privacy. I’m not letting you get close to any of my brothers or their friends, looking as good as you do.” He accelerated through the gates, knowing the sensor would close them behind him. “That okay with you?”

“Yes,” she said, unclicking her seatbelt now they were off the road. She snuggled as close to him as she could and gave a deep sigh of satisfaction.

                                                            *

Atarangi gave his neck a little nip and then licked him. He smelled… warm. Like fresh baking or newly ironed shirts. Or maybe just like himself. She licked again, which caused a soft rumble to issue from deep in his chest.

She couldn’t wait to get her hands on that chest. In fact, why wait at all? She’d already established the impressive dimensions of what lurked behind his straining zipper, so she drew her hand higher up his body and tried to insert it between two of his shirt buttons. Not quite enough room, but if she just undid one…

Adam’s rumble swelled. “What are you doing to me, woman? Undressing me before we’ve even there?”

She breathed him in again. “How far to go now?” He’d driven around curves past several long, low dwellings. Lush vegetation surrounded the houses and driveway, visible because of subtle uplighters shooting beams of illumination through the foliage.

“Two more. I’m up the back with the best view.”

She heard a hint of smugness in his quiet comment. “How come you got the prime spot?”

Adam chuckled. “I’m the oldest.”  He slowed the Jeep. “And the biggest.”

She batted her eyelashes at him. Goodness, he just brought out the flirty worst in her! “The biggest bear wins?”

“Pretty much the story, babe. And here we are.”

Atarangi watched as the big garage door slid high enough for them to drive inside. Her eyes roamed over a low sporty car, a mean-looking motorcycle, two kayaks on wall-racks, fishing rods, footballs, and shelves full of automotive products. “Total man-cave!” she exclaimed. “How do you think you’re going to give a woman any of your time if you have all this to play with?”

Adam cut the Jeep’s motor and sent her a very meaningful glance. “How was I supposed to fill my life until I found her?” He released his seat-belt and pressed his big hand over hers so her fingers were trapped inside his shirt. His skin burned hot, as though he was super-heated inside and his passion was waiting to burst out like lava. She thought for a moment of the warring mountains and their huge battle. It would be like that with Adam—she sensed he’d hold nothing back if he’d set his mind to claiming her.

He bent his face to hers and teased her lips with tiny licks.

Atarangi couldn’t wait. She stretched her neck to get closer, heard his amused chuckle, and felt him pull just out of range. So he wanted to play games? Or maybe it was what bears did? Licked and tasted first? She lay back against his huge hard shoulder and parted her lips, hoping he’d continue.

He bent just far enough to nudge her nose with his. “I want so much to kiss you,” he growled. “But if I start, I’ll never stop. This isn’t the place.”

She felt his big chest swell with a deep breath. His heart thumped under her palm, surely faster than before? “So let’s go where you need to.” She stroked his skin, heard his sigh of satisfaction, and then he pushed his door open.

Atarangi stepped out into the cavernous garage, glancing around at all the sporting gear before taking his outstretched hand. “You’re a fisherman,” she said. “So’s my Koro.” She sent him a mischievous glance. “But you wouldn’t really need a fishing rod, being a bear, would you?” she said, snuggling closer and falling into step with him.

Adam led her through to a door that opened into the house. “I can’t just amble down to Lake Taupo and catch trout with my paws,” he protested. “Can you imagine the pandemonium? The world’s press would helicopter in and that’d be the end of peace for everyone—shifters and residents alike.”

She giggled and slapped his chest, picturing the headlines. “Bearly Believable,” she chortled. “Furry Fishing. Or maybe Grizzly Grabbers.”

He gave her butt an affectionate wallop. “Watch it, or I’ll Grizzly Grab you…”

“Yes please,” she said, sending him her best come-hither smile.

His expression turned serious. “More likely Anguish for Anglers or Peril for the Public or Kill the Trout Thieves.”

“Oh, they wouldn’t!” Her mouth lost its curve.

“Of course they would. Our lives wouldn’t be worth living, so we guard our privacy like gold, and we’re very careful where we shift. I’m putting a lot of trust in you, telling you these things.” He pushed the door open, ushered her through, and added softly, “Welcome home.”