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Book two of the Family Pride Paranormal Romance Series
After claiming Zora Mason as his mate, and fighting off a threat to the MacKinnon pride, Mac is more than ready to get back to managing his coffee bar and settling into mated bliss. But just when it looks like things are quieting down, Mac and Zora find more challenges ahead.
Plans for Zora and Mac’s official introduction to the pride, and the opening of the new coffee bar may be derailed when, gripped by a mysterious blood fever lingering after the leadership challenge, Mac is driven to the edge of his endurance as he fights to keep his inner lion under control.
Juggling her responsibilities in the business and her position as the mate of the pride leader becomes even more challenging when Zora is forced to confront her fear that Mac is changing into someone she doesn’t recognize.
As the fever pushes Mac to the edge, the revelation of an old, painful family secret proves to be the key to saving Mac’s life. Zora and Mac come up with a plan to end the threat of the fever forever, but that same plan may destroy them both.
Is their love strong enough to defeat the blood fever, so they can live happily ever after as mates?
Read an Excerpt
"Move a bit to the left."
"I just did that. Can't you tell?"
"If you don't move the chair, the table won't fit."
Mac stood back and examined the placement of the furniture. That's what he got for getting square tables to fit into this new shop. He had round ones back at his coffee bar in Bristol Hills. They fit better and made it easier for customers to navigate.
"Of course, it'll fit," Zora said, obviously exasperated. "Just shove it into that gap there."
"When you talk like that I get excited." He hoped to lighten the mood and get her smiling again.
"You're always excited." Wiping her hands on her white t-shirt, she left smudges down the front. "It's almost midnight. Can we go now?"
It was his fault that they were here moving furniture and as-sembling shelves. After putting in a 10-hour day at the shop back in Bristol Hills, they'd come here to get this shop ready for the grand opening. Now after almost five hours of moving chairs and tables around, they hadn't made much of a dent.
Sure he could hire someone to do this, but it was his responsibility. He had to get it done himself to make sure it was done right. "Babe, let's just put another table together. After that we can go."
"Another table? We've already done six of them, Mac. There are six more in those boxes back there." She pointed to the door leading to the storage room. "I can barely see straight. We've got four weeks until this place opens, we can't do it all in one night."
"I know that," he snapped. As much as he didn't want to admit it, she was right. How much could two human beings do? Well, one human and one lion shifter.
"Okay. You're right. Let's close up and go home."
Instead of replying, Zora rolled her eyes and headed through the doorway leading to the storage room and office.
What was wrong now? Once she started the eye rolling, it usually meant trouble. She should've been pleased that he agreed with her.
Mac locked the front door, then took a moment looking over the shop before he turned off the lights. Soon there would be posters covering the light brown walls and a chalkboard on the wall behind the counter. Once that was done, and the chairs and tables were arranged, they'd move in the machines and cases to display the deserts and sandwiches. Little by little, it was coming along.
Zora was waiting for him by the back door. Propped up against the wall, her eyes half-closed, she looked like she was about to fall asleep on her feet. Her normally sparkling brown eyes were red and watery, and when she reached up to smooth her curly hair off her face, he noticed a couple of broken nails.
She looked so weary he was tempted to pick her up and carry her to the car. Since he'd met her five months ago when she'd come into Mac's Coffee Bar, he'd been in love and in lust. What he'd never expected was that the woman he'd met that day, and hired as an assistant manager, would end up becoming his mate. After all his years as a nomad lion shifter, he'd finally found the perfect woman to settle down with.
About the Author:Deborah A Bailey's Romantic Fantasy, Paranormal & Science Fiction Romance novels include suspense, a bit of mystery and a lot of romantic heat.
Her short stories have won awards from the Philadelphia Writers' Conference and have been published in US1 Magazine and the Sun and are included in, Electric Dreams: Seven Futuristic Tales. She's the author of non-fiction books, and articles for various online publications.
Visit her website for more information and subscribe to the newsletter so you'll be the first to find out about giveaways, book launches and sneak peeks.
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Family Pride: Blood Fever and Family Pride: Love and Challenges will be on sale for 0.99 on Amazon, B&N, Apple & Kobo from 12/26/22 – 1/9/23
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