Having had a cat clambering over me for most of the morning (it’s what they do; it’s their job), I thought I’d spread the feline love with an extract from my Totally Bound shifter novella, Abyssinian Heat. Miranda thinks she’s bought an ordinary kitten to replace her old cat, but Tadhg has a secret – he’s really a pureblood cat shifter, and one who experiences a strange reaction to being around Miranda’s on-off boyfriend, Finn…
When I went back to Patsy’s to pick Tadhg up, one of the girl kittens had already gone to her new home. Tadhg snuffled round my feet, clearly happy to see me, though his mood changed to one of anxiety when I placed him in the cat carrier.
“It’s all right, boy, I’m not going to hurt you,” I soothed him, but he still continued to squeak piteously as I loaded him into the car, stowing his carrier in the footwell on the passenger side.
Once we were home, he finally settled down, completing a swift circuit of the ground floor to discover where I’d left his food before making a nest for himself in his cat bed. He slept for most of the day, until the sound of a key in the lock announced Finn’s arrival.
Gently, I lifted Tadhg into my arms and took him to meet Finn. The reaction wasn’t quite what I’d been expecting. As Finn reached out a finger to stroke the kitten behind his ears, Tadhg’s hackles rose, and he gave a tiny hiss. In return, something flashed in Finn’s eyes, as though he had seen a threat and was responding in kind. Then Finn shook his head, apologising for not being in the best of moods. “One of the lads missed his footing climbing the scaffolding this afternoon and took a nasty fall,” he explained. “He’s not too badly hurt—fractured his elbow, that’s all—but you never want to see any of your mates being loaded into an ambulance.”
I set Tadhg down carefully on the floor, and went to pour wine for Finn and myself. We curled up on the sofa companionably, Finn’s arm round my shoulders, Tadhg sprawled out on my feet. The arrangement made me think the kitten’s initial distrust of my boyfriend was just a reaction to being in a new and unfamiliar environment. I didn’t realise there was something far stranger behind it.
To read more about this deliciously carnal cat shifter and the woman he loves, get your claws into Abyssinian Heat, available from Totally Bound.