Tina Blenke’s Shifting Cargo
Tina is back with the third book in her Shifting Paradigms series. If you haven’t read the first two books in the series, you totally should, they’re really good. I’m super excited to read Shifting Cargo to find out what’s going on in the world she created. Today Tina shares an exclusive scene she wrote that you can only find here. You definitely aren’t going to want to miss it because it is so good! After the scene, read all about the book along with an excerpt that will leave you wanting more. At the very bottom, enter for a chance to win an Amazon gift card.
Shifting Cargo – 6 months later
“I’m really glad that you suggested we go out for lunch today. The weather is absolutely beautiful and it would have been a shame to spend it indoors.” Ramey dove into his ham sandwich at the local deli only a few blocks from Julie’s house.
“I hope you don’t think it’s too weird to have lunch with your mate’s mom.”
“No, of course not, Julie. You’ve been so kind to me since I’ve decided to make this my permanent home. I couldn’t have asked for a nicer family.” He washed down his remaining sandwich and paused before starting in on his side salad. Julie was fidgeting with her napkin and Ramey sensed that there may have been nan ulterior motive to their lunch plans. “Is there a specific reason why you wanted to meet today?” Ramey was nervous enough as it was with his plans for this evening and decided the best way to find out what Julie wanted was to be direct.
“Sweetheart,” Julie started reaching her hand across the table to hold onto Ramey’s. Her hand was pleasantly warm and soft. The embrace was gentle but it might as well have been a full body hug with the way it wrapped around his heart. He truly loved this woman who had opened up her home and family to him in the short time he’d been a part of Londyn’s whole world. His entire life had changed for the better and he couldn’t remember being happier. “Ramey, darling, I want you to know how much I love you.”
“I love you, too, Julie.” She smiled and tiny lines gathered at the creases of her eyes and in the corners of her mouth. Years of happiness and laughter had left their marks on her and he was in awe of this remarkable woman.
“You aren’t only a mate to my only child, you’re a part of this family. Even if fate hadn’t chosen for the two of you to be destined for each other, I would have wished for you to be my son. I just wanted you to know that.”
“Oh, Julie.” Tears of joy threatened to spill as emotions choked him into silence. His own estranged mother had never been a part of his life and though he lied to himself and said it didn’t matter, in truth it mattered a great deal. The woman sitting across from him proved that family didn’t have to be blood they only had to love him for who he truly was.
“But there’s one thing I’d like from you.” Ramey halted, afraid for what she wanted from him. “I don’t want you to call me Julie anymore, son. I want you to call me mom.”
The hold on his tears were futile as they spilled over onto his cheeks. Jumping from his chair, it turned over loudly in the quiet restaurant but he didn’t care. He threw himself onto the floor in front of the only woman who had ever loved him and hugged her tightly to his chest. She returned the love in kind and it comforted him that tonight’s plans would now be perfect.
Londyn had been planning the weekend hiking trip for weeks. The meticulous Shifter had everything packed and ready to go before Ramey returned home from town and it helped that his nerves were no longer threatening to destroy his plans. Londyn had spent the last several months working on the books for his father’s business. He had shared that he loved the numbers and didn’t miss being on the road. This gave them more time together since Londyn didn’t have to haul loads anymore. This would be the first time they could spend the entire weekend away from the world. Together.
That evening, they sat cuddled in one another’s arms sated after the day’s long hike and a satisfying dinner of fish caught by Londyn in the nearby stream. As the sun began to set behind the mountain range, Ramey knew it was time.
“Everything about this,” he gestured to the forest around them, “it’s all perfect.” Londyn pulled Ramey in closer and placed a kiss on his head. “If you’d have told me a year ago that I’d be here with you as happy as I am, I wouldn’t have believed any of it. I could have died during that time not knowing that any of this was possible and I would have missed out on the most beautiful part of life. I would have missed out on meeting you and falling in love. The concept of love wasn’t lost on me, I mean I knew the definition and knew that people fell in love and stayed together for years and some would break up. But, I never really knew what love was until I found you.” Ramey crawled out of Londyn’s warm embrace reluctantly and faced him. The suns golden rays shone bright oranges and reds in the branches of the tall trees while long shadows striped the forest floor. It was exactly how he’d pictured this moment. He’d been restless for days in anticipation hoping that he was doing the right thing and at this moment he’d never felt more right.
Londyn smiled brightly, nearly outshining the sun. This man sitting before him had always been his beacon of love and support and his nerves settled holding onto Londyn’s hands. Londyn’s love was evident in his eyes and Ramey relaxed in their gaze.
“I love you, Londyn, more than I’d ever dreamed possible. I know that your customs declare that we are already mates destined to be together forever, chosen by fate to be perfectly suited for one another. I know that these past few months haven’t been easy with my continued recovery and depression but I want you to know that I’ve never regretted meeting you. I’ve never regretted falling in love. In my culture we declare our eternal love by proposing that we spend the rest of our lives bound to each other in marriage. I’m proposing this to you, Londyn. I’m offering you forever.”
“I’m speechless, Ramey.” Londyn pulled Ramey into a tight embrace and kissed him hard pouring every ounce of love into that one kiss. Ramey knew everything Londyn was feeling from this one kiss.
“Loving you has been easy. Sometimes living with you was difficult but loving you was never a problem. I’d always known that we would be together and hoped that we’d be perfect but I didn’t know that I’d also like you so much. Spending time with you is the best part of every day. You make me feel special like I’m the best part of every day and that feeling goes straight to a guy’s head. The way you make me feel is not something I ever anticipated and you humble me. I love you so much, Ramey, and it would honor me to complete your mating tradition. So yes, Ramey, I accept forever with you.”
The sun settled behind the mountain range into a smear of blues and purples until only twilight filled the sky. Ramey held onto the love of his life and kissed him, the feeling of love nearly knocking the breath out of him and bringing him to his knees. Londyn’s hands were in his hair with one hand bearing the simple silver band engraved with their names. It was more than Ramey deserved and it was perfect.
Ramey’s world is shattered when his brother dies suddenly. He tries to go through the motions, day by agonizing day, doing the best that he can at his job, but it’s not enough. Months of depression escalates into alcohol use and drug abuse to numb the pain. For the past year, he’s been dreading meeting with his lawyer and accepting his brother’s death. The pain becomes too much to bear and Ramey is caught with cocaine at work and fired immediately. When he hits rock bottom, he realizes that he’s disrespecting his brother’s memory and checks himself into rehab with the help of an unlikely friend.
Londyn’s life is perfect living as a wolf Shifter in the Pack Lands. He’s been working in the family business and happy living in his cabin in the woods. Londyn has high expectations for the perfect mate to make his life complete.
Can Ramey accept his destiny as a Shifter’s mate? And is his love for the wolf Shifter worth leaving behind the demons and the only world he’s ever known?
“It pleases me that you want to see my wolf so bad. Have a seat on that fallen log by the fire and watch the master at work.” Ramey took a seat as instructed and watched Londyn prepare for his shift. Londyn removed his clothing piece by maddening piece. It was a slow strip tease set to the music of the forest and Ramey swore all the blood left his body and pooled into his cock. Londyn’s body was absolutely lickable. He had definition in his lean muscles, his chest was smooth and hairless with pale pink nipples that Ramey couldn’t help but drool over. His back and legs had corded muscles and fine blond hair covered his legs and groin. Except for a few old scars, the man didn’t have a mark on him. No blemishes, birthmarks or tattoos and given his age it was odd that he didn’t have at least one. Ramey had never been with a man who didn’t have any ink. And the ass on his boyfriend. He had won the lottery ten times over. He had to sit on his hands to keep from reaching out and when he turned around, he caught Ramey ogling his mate.
“Hey, eyes are up here, sir.”
“I’m sorry, it’s just that—”
“Nah, just messing with you. I like your eyes on me.” Londyn’s own blues were dark with heat proving that Londyn was just as turned on as Ramey was by the show. It wasn’t just Londyn’s eyes giving away his arousal either.
Tina is a retired Air Force brat and has lived in several states as well as a handful of countries. She has always had a soft spot for literature and is a voracious reader. When she isn’t writing, she can be found cuddled up with a good book. Though Tina adores a thrilling novel with sappy lovesick heroes, she is terrified of things that go bump in the night. This makes for quite a complicated relationship with zombies, something that she just can’t get enough of.
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tina-Blenke-Author/487878157926041?ref=hl
eXtasy Books: http://www.extasybooks.com/tina-blenke/Shifting-Cargo/
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