“I wish you could see this view in person—except for how cold it is.” Noah snapped a photo that didn’t do the colors of dawn justice, and sent it with his text to Drew.
He waited for a reply and realized Drew probably wasn’t awake yet. No one in their right mind is up at this hour.
He’d made the best of the cramped hotel room, knowing from experience to bring an extra blanket, good pillow, books, and power strips. Hotels never had enough outlets to charge his cameras. Fortunately, travel wasn’t a constant, but staying overnight to get the right light or have time to set up cameras happened fairly often.
Will that be a problem with Drew? Will he resent my photography? It’s a demanding job.
Noah cleaned his lenses and checked his batteries as he packed his day bag. Travel made it easy to find overnight company without entanglement, and he’d long ago grown tired of waking up alone. He’d had a serious relationship back in film school, which fizzled after graduation. There were a few boyfriends who lasted more than a month or two, but his irregular hours always ended up being more than anyone wanted to deal with for long.
Can it be different with Drew? We felt such an immediate bond—I’ve never had a connection like that with anyone. It’s like we’ve known each other forever.
“Of course. We’re fated mates,” his lynx reminded him, as if Noah could forget.
He smiled, thinking of their conversation that ended only a few hours ago. It wasn’t just the sex—although that was combustible in a way Noah had never experienced before. Everything took on a different light when it involved Drew. Talking about the trivial activities of the day wasn’t boring. Sharing a movie or even reading the same book and talking about their reactions now felt satisfying and fun.
I’m a Cancer—we’re protective and defend our family. Except I don’t really have any.
Noah didn’t have many living relatives. His father had vanished when he was young, and his mother died two years ago from a bad heart. He had a brother and sister, but they drifted apart, and Noah hadn’t heard from them in years. He wasn’t sure he even had valid addresses for them.
Drew is my mate. He’s my family now. And he has Russ and Liam and their friends. A pack. Someday, they’ll be my pack.
Clowder, his lynx sniffed. Lynxes have a clowder, not a pack.
Sounds like soup.
Clowder is not chowder, silly human. But we could vote to let Drew be an honorary lynx and join.
Vote? Who—you and me?
We are the only ones in our clowder now. It would be nice to add our mate—even if he is a dog.
I’ve fallen hard. And it should scare me. But it doesn’t. When I worry that he might not feel the same, I can’t breathe