“Yep.” She opened the door, looking back at him like she expected him to say something else.
If he’d upset her with the questions, he hadn’t meant to. But he also didn’t know how to apologize for trying to find out more about her. All he could come up with was, “Follow me home. It’s not far.”
“Right behind you.” She shut the door and climbed onto her bike, popping her helmet on before starting the engine. Why hadn’t she taken off instead of coming here to begin with? There was still a chance she’d run but Hank figured she was more scared of Clem than she was of him. Clem had a reputation for punishing pack members who disobeyed him. Hank supposed that extended to family as well.
He turned out of the lot toward home. She stayed behind him and as she followed him through town, he tried to see things through her eyes. The place was packed with tourists, many kitted up in Nocturne Falls T-shirts, but some were in costumes or half-masks or face paint. The kids were decked out in their favorite Halloween get-ups. It probably seemed crazy to her, and it was in a way, but he admired the cleverness of it. Being a supernatural and not having to hide your real identity all the time made life so much easier.
They left the town behind and drove into the hills, and the countryside grew more rural. He pulled into the entrance of his community, tapped the clicker pinned to his sun visor and waited for the gate to open, then went in slowly so she could keep up with him.
He tried to see his neighborhood the same way he’d seen the town.
The houses in the secluded development were good sized, all stone and wood with neat front yards. She was the daughter of a wealthy alpha and, judging by the Harley she rode, probably lived in a pretty nice place. What would she think of his house? He’d never cared much what anyone had thought of his home before now, but this was a different situation.
He parked in the driveway and got out of his duty car, leaving it outside although he’d opened one of the three garage doors.
She pulled in beside his car, shut the bike down, took off her helmet and flicked her long hair free, still straddling the bike. Her hotness in that moment was not lost on Hank. She squinted at the house. Her smile grew incredulous as she looked at the forest behind it, then to his neighbors on either side. “Really? You live here.”
“Problem?” He liked it. If she was used to something grander…tough.
“First of all, don’t you think Wolf Creek is a little on the nose as your chosen place of residence?”
They’d passed the sign on their way in. He’d never given it much thought. Wolf Creek was one of the main tributaries that fed the falls. It was also a gated community especially for shifters, designed to keep human tourists out. For their own safety. Full moons tended to make things a little hairy.
He grunted, having no real response.
She waved a finger at him. “That noise you make? That’s not an answer, you know.”
“Wolf Creek is where I live. If you don’t like it—”
“No, I think it’s beautiful.”
“Then what’s the matter?”
“Nothing, it’s just…it’s probably a little forward of me to ask this, but seeing as how we’re about to be married and all, how in the hell do you afford a house like this in a gated community? How much does the sheriff of this burg make?”
He glanced at the house behind him. It was a good house. Craftsman. Solid timbers. Stonework. Well worth the money from his pack dividends. Although, part of it was gifted to him when he’d accepted the position of Nocturne Falls sheriff. The Ellinghams liked to offer deals that were hard to turn down.
Before he could answer, she walked past him into the garage and let out a soft whoop of surprise.
“Is this what I think it is?” She now stood beside his pride and joy. Touching it. Her fingers trailed over the only non-related female he’d ever let spend the night. His 1968 Pontiac GTO. “Sweet ride. Sweet. But again, how can you afford this incredible piece of machinery?”
“Are you kidding?” She opened the car door and stuck her head inside. “Is this the Ram Air package?”
“Yes.” His hands flexed, the urge to pull her out of the vehicle warring with what he knew was proper behavior. Which would be the exact opposite of what would happen if he touched her. And those curves.
Truth was, he’d lied to her in his office. Taking her to bed had definitely been in his thoughts.
She straightened and looked at him, but didn’t shut the door. “Black on black.”
He nodded, impressed. He’d never known a woman who knew much about cars, but it followed since the Kincaids ran auto shops.
Her brows lifted. “There were only ten of these produced.”
She laughed. “Very good. I already knew that, I just wanted to see if you did, too.” She whistled and went back to admiring the car. “I’d have said yes based on this gorgeous hunk of metal alone. When do I get to drive it?”
“You don’t. Bring your bike into the empty bay.”
To her credit, there was no pouting in response. “So the neighbors don’t see?”
“Something like that.” He started toward the house, then paused. “Where are your things?”
“In the saddlebags.”
He looked back at the bike. There was no way those saddlebags held more than a weekend’s worth of clothes. That was good. Meant she didn’t intend to stay long. Maybe they could get married and go their separate ways. A marriage in name only sort of thing.