Enter the Cat Ch. 09


"Yeah." Rosy's reply is abrupt but at least she is speaking and not asking if she is in trouble.

Malcolm returns to the truck within minutes and we are back on the highway quickly. Malcolm opens one of his plastic bags to reveal a paper bag of hot potato chips and he begins eating them, blowing on them before popping them into his mouth.

"Get 'em into you before they end up soggy," Malcolm mumbles around a mouthful of chips. He holds the bag out so I can grab a handful of fragrant chips and I catch sight of Rosy via the rear-view mirror -- she is waving one hand keeping the steam from the chips out of her face.

"I like soggy chips," Rosy says but I notice she is eating the crisp chips hungrily.

"You need to be ed-dew-mar-skated," Malcolm says drawing the word out and mangling the pronunciation. "You, eat, tay-toe chips, hot, and, crispy."

"Slightly warm, soggy, and smothered in sauce, or gravy," Rosy counters ending her announcement with a slight snort of emphasis.

"Awe strewth," Malcolm mutters. "Totally un-bloody civilised."

"Barbarian," Rosy says lightly. "Soggy chips are nearly as good as creamy mashed potatoes."

The portion of chips disappears quickly between the three of us and Malcolm opens a two-litre bottle of coke he'd bought with the food. He passes the drink to Rosy first and I hear her drinking deeply before there is a soft pop of released air and a long soft ahhh.

"Give it here," I say when I glimpse her move to pass the drink to Malcolm. I take hold of the bottle in one hand and drink. I imagine I can taste the saltiness left behind from the chips and her lips as she drank. Malcolm is quick to take the bottle when I hold it out and I hear a soft grunt from him.

"You pair didn't leave me much drink," Malcolm growls but his voice lacks conviction.

"Tasted too good," I say evenly.

A choking noise comes from Malcolm and then coke is sprayed on the inside of the windscreen as he coughs and splutters.

"Gross!" Rosy squeals.

"Man, you are hard up," Malcolm laughs between coughs. The glove box rattles and hopefully he is getting a cloth of some kind out to clean up the mess.

"Here, you clean up the mess. You caused it," Malcolm says.

"I did not! You're the one who started choking," Rosy says firmly.

"If you didn't have your hand on Micah's leg making his brake foot jump it wouldn't have happened," Malcolm laughs.

"I wasn't doing anything of the sort!" Rosy denies virulently. "I didn't touch him!"

"What? No hand on the knee?" Malcolm laughs delightedly. "Maybe you should have your hand on his leg. Or be flirting with him. It might keep his mind from wandering,"

"What are you talking about?" Rosy asks in a stilted voice, her tone completely even.

"Oh come on," Malcolm scoffs with merriment in his voice. "You can't be that naive."

"Malcolm, enough. Shut the hell up!" I order tightly with a quick glance at Rosy, but she has her head turned towards Malcolm as he continues talking.

"He wasn't talking about the coke tasting good - he would have been able to taste your mouth on the lip of the bottle. The salt from the chips, you," Malcolm informs her and laughs again.

"You're mad," Rosy says scornfully. "Totally bonkers. I don't leave a weird taste behind when I drink out of a bottle or cup or whatever. You lot do though, and a smell. Smells like clan," with that announcement Rosy gives a soft dignified snort, and turns her attention towards the windscreen as she begins wiping it with a wad of paper towels.

"You saying you think I'm weird?" Malcolm asks incredulously as he makes exaggerated hand gestures.

"If that's the way you want to take it, yes you're weird." Rosy says evenly refusing to be ruffled by Malcolm's behaviour as she rubs at the coke splatter across the windscreen.

"You hear that Micah?" Malcolm asks in awe. "Rosy thinks about me!"

"No more than absolutely necessary," Rosy mutters, "unless it is to note how much of an utter and complete idiot you are. Like now for instance."

I try to ignore Malcolm's chatter and the mutters from Rosy. I fight the urge to stop the truck and punch Malcolm; didn't he know how easily he could have panicked Rosy?

I see the sign for the beach I want and turn the truck onto a sandy road. It is only a seven-minute drive before I am parking the truck under the shade of a tree on the edge of the road. Off to the side we can see the ocean as it rolls into shore, lazy waves that wash up onto a long empty beach.

"We'll eat lunch here, then go down onto the beach for a while," I say as I climb out of the truck, reach behind the seat and pull two throw rugs out.

"I'm going for a walk on the beach first," Rosy announces as she climbs out of the truck after Malcolm.

It is hard not to groan in frustration at Rosy's words. If I didn't know better I would swear she was being difficult to pay Malcolm and I back for the laughs we shared. Or maybe she was aware of the sexual innuendo that had been thick in the conversation just a few minutes before - about me drinking from the bottle after she did.

"Eat first," I say firmly.

"But I want to go and look at the ocean," Rosy says with a wistful look towards the beach.

"It will still be there when we're finished eating," Malcolm points out.

Rosy makes no reply as she crosses her arms over her chest and waits impatiently. I roughly spread the blankets out side by side so there is enough room for the three of us to sit comfortably before retrieving the wrapped food and drinks esky. All of the food is open and visible before Rosy sits down and helps herself without being told to.

I help myself to some calamari and crumbed prawn cutlets, purposely not touching any of the battered fish pieces as that is the first thing Rosy reaches for. Soon all that remains on the white butcher's paper is a couple of burnt chip ends, squeezed lemon wedges and a scattering of salt crystals.

I lean back and rest on one elbow as I watch Rosy pulling apart the quarter of a chicken Malcolm put on the white paper near her. She dismantles the wing completely, pulling each bone away from the rest before nibbling the meat and skin clean off. Her teeth are white between her greasy lips and I watch as she pulls a bite of flesh free before chewing, licking her lips, and then swallowing.

I feel my breath catch in my throat as my heart starts to speed up, and a heavy stirring starts low in my stomach as I watch her mouth as she eats. Finished with the wing she sucks each finger into her mouth individually before licking them clean. I grit my teeth to stop the groan that wants to emerge as she tilts her head back, and drops the browned skin straight between her lips and onto her tongue. Her lips are closed and she lowers her chin but her mouth doesn't move. I glance up from her lips to find her watching me in motionless silence.

Rosy is watching me unblinkingly. I notice her pupils are large and dark just before she looks away with a start and resumes eating. I turn away reaching for the esky and choose a bottle of coke for myself.

"Anyone else want a drink?" I ask without looking at either Malcolm or Rosy.

"You get a couple of iced-coffees?" Malcolm asks.

"Yeah," I answer as I pass one of the milk drinks to Malcolm.

"Coke thanks," Rosy says.

There is a soft gassy hiss and I turn my head to look her way. Rosy smiles widely as she raises my open drink to her lips and takes several deep swallows.

"Oi! That was my drink," I say as I reach for another bottle of drink without taking my eyes off her. She lifts the bottle to her mouth once again, rubs it slightly on her bottom lip, takes a sip, then offers the bottle to me.

Malcolm laughs a low, deep appreciative chuckle making me give a start. I look away breaking eye contact with Rosy only to look back hurriedly as I hear her getting to her feet. I go to get to my feet and she glares at me but I see the shadows of uncertainty and fear deep in her eyes.

"I'm going down to the beach, alone," Rosy says forcefully and I settle back onto my elbow.

"We'll probably only be five or so minutes behind you," I manage evenly as she turns away and I hear the slight throaty noise of annoyance she makes. I am busy watching her as she kicks her sandals off, before pulling her t-shirt off over her head to reveal a modest tankini top. Too entranced to speak to her further I watch the way her hips and bare legs move beneath her shorts as she heads down towards the beach.

"Hot damn!" Malcolm exclaims when Rosy is down on the beach and well out of hearing range. "She had me believing she was blissfully unaware of what I meant when I said you tasted her on the bottle neck."

"Yeah, me too," I admit quietly.

Down on the beach Rosy is standing in the edge of the water, waves rolling around her ankles as she glances back over her shoulder at us. I watch as she squats and rinses one hand in the water before switching the drink to her clean hand so she can wash the other hand as well. I crumple the used butcher's paper together before getting to my feet and putting the rubbish in an empty plastic bag.

"I can pack up here. I think you're wanted down there," Malcolm says.

I give a nod of thanks before heading down to the beach. I watch Rosy as I go; she has half turned to watch me walking towards her but before I reach her she begins to walk along the waterline slowly.

"Want some company?" I ask as I fall into step beside her.

"Okay," Rosy says quietly.

We walk in silence for several minutes before Rosy pauses to let the remains of a wave roll over her feet.

"Would you like to go out for dinner tomorrow night? There are some good restaurants in town." I say earnestly. Suddenly just the two of us going out for a meal is important. "Maybe go to a movie afterwards?"

"What if I said I'd prefer a moon light hunt?" Rosy asks quietly.

My inner cat immediately makes his approval known as we hear this and it takes me a few moments before I trust myself to speak calmly.

"Do you want just one or two others along?" I ask as we begin walking once again. "Sam, Steven and Mikkarl should be back by then. Do you want Sam and Steven along? We can't all go because Jazzy is in seclusion and Mitchell, Timny and most likely Malcolm, wouldn't leave to go on a hunt."

"That's because the three of them like Jazzy isn't it?" Rosy asks curiously. "If it was me in the house, who wouldn't want to go on a hunt?"

"Me for a start," I say firmly and pause for a moment before adding, "Steven and probably Donovan would hang around as well."

"It would be okay if I asked for Sam and Steven to come along on the hunt as well?" Rosy asks as she stops and turns to face the ocean.

"Yeah," I agree, "fine by me." I stand beside her watching the waves rolling in towards shore. I glance at her, hesitate a moment then reach out and grasp her hand. Rosy draws a sharp breath, little more than a hiss and jerks at her hand. I cling for a moment and am about to let go when she stops pulling against my light grasp.

"Sorry, I didn't mean to pull away," Rosy whispers faintly.

"Some habits are hard to break," I answer softly. I turn my head to look at her and she glances my way, gives a slight grimace, and then nods as she looks away.

We stand there for a few minutes before I turn, and with a gentle tug lead the way along the beach. We walk hand in hand silently for a good distance before Rosy slows to a halt. I release her hand and watch as she walks knee deep into the water. She glances back at me and grins before making her way back to the dry sand.

"That water feels different to fresh water," Rosy remarks.

"It's still wet," I say as I scoop her up in my arms and head out into the water regardless of the fact my jeans are becoming soaked. I plan on her ending up just as wet as I am becoming.

"Wha ... no!" Rosy squeals as she realises my intent. She grabs me around the shoulders and hangs on tightly as she kicks her legs wildly.

"Give me one good reason why I shouldn't drop you in the water," I say as I stop in hip deep water. I watch as Rosy looks down at the water, then up into my face.

"If you take me back to the dry sand ... I'll let you kiss me," Rosy offers with a blush.

An offer like this is too good to pass up but I pretend to consider it for a few moments before turning and heading back to shore. Once out of the water I stop and move my arm letting her legs down towards the ground, making her body rub against mine as I slowly lower her to stand on her feet.

Her eyes don't leave mine the entire time and I feel one side of my mouth lift in a smile as I lower my head until her eyes flutter closed and my lips settle over hers.

She tastes of sea air and the slightly sweet batter from the fish and seafood sticks. Her mouth opens beneath mine and I waste no time as I thrust my tongue deeply into her sweetness, mimicking what I want to do to her body. I feast on her lips for a few moments before Rosy gasps and pulls away from me. I release her reluctantly.

"Too much?" I guess quietly.

"Too fast," Rosy says stepping away from me with an uncertain glance my way. "The other night doesn't count."

"You let slip the other night that you are scared of me," I say lightly as I reach for her hand and take several steps back the way we came.

"I'm not actually scared of you," Rosy says as she begins walking beside me. "It's just you can be very intimidating at times, especially when it's directed my way."

"I have to keep order some way," I tell her quietly.

"I understand that," Rosy admits.

I look along the beach and watch Malcolm where he is out in the surf diving beneath waves. I wander into the shallow water as we walk. When the water reaches over my ankles, I release Rosy's hand and turn to splash water at her. She gives a startled squeal, jumps back and then reaches down to flick water at me.

* * * * *

It's dark as I carefully park the truck and turn off the engine. A minute or two earlier I dropped Malcolm and Rosy off near the quarters with Malcolm's bundle of prawns. Malcolm is heading to the kitchen to cook up a feed for us while Rosy wants a shower.

I smile to myself as I lock the truck up and head for the quarters. I can't help thinking of the fun I'd had in the surf with Rosy. Both of us ended up soaked from our splashing and I managed to steal several more kisses before Rosy ran into deeper water and dived under an incoming wave.

The screen door squeaks beneath my hand as I open it and I mentally tell myself I need to get Timny to see to it. He is a whiz with general building maintenance. I can hear the quiet murmur of chatter along with the buzz of the tv as I head for the lounge room.

"No problems today?" I ask Dwayne as I stop in the doorway.

Dwayne glances my way from where he stands between the kitchen and lounge room. He grins as he gives a slight nod.

"Everything went smoothly," Dwayne tells me. "The iron roofing was delivered so we fixed the roof on the hayshed. How was your day?"

"Micah! Micah! You're back!" Donovan yells as the screen door bangs noisily and I hear him running along the hallway behind me.

I turn and face him as his scent reaches me. Underlying his normal scent is a sweet and spicy undertone that tells me he has been around Jazzy before coming to the quarters. While the scent doesn't affect me I know most of the toms will be highly aroused by the smell.

"As soon as Rosy gets out of the shower you are to have a thorough shower," I order firmly in a sharp tone.

"Donovan! Donovan get out here now!" Wade yells angrily from outside. I can hear him striding across the gravel near the door and then the door squeaks in protest as he jerks the door open.

I am aware of Donovan scrambling past me, fear coming off him in waves; no doubt it is Wade who is scaring him.

"He's here, Wade," I say quietly.

"Get out of my way!" Wade snaps pushing me aside roughly and grabbing hold of Donovan by the upper arm.

"I told you to shower before you left the house," Wade snarls and gives Donovan a rough shake.

"But I wanted to talk to Rosy and Micah," Donovan complains. "Where is Rosy?"

"Do you think Rosy will appreciate you upsetting her brother, smelling the way you do?" Wade demands.

"But ..." Donovan whines.

"No buts about it," I snap, "not only did you disobey your Alpha, you disrespected me as well. Get out of my house and do not return until after lunch tomorrow."

"But that's not fair! I need to talk to Rosy," Donovan says tearfully.

I place my hands on my hips as I glare at Donovan, his eyes dart from Wade to me and back to Wade before he gives a defeated sigh and turns towards the hallway.

"I'll need to have a talk to you in the morning," Wade pauses to say before following Donovan towards the door.

"Donny is old enough to know better," Dwayne says as he walks over to me. He stops, sniffs the air and then turns around and heads for the pantry. He returns with a can of air freshener and sprays liberally.

"Oi Chris! Peel the prawns don't eat them!" Malcolm growls loudly in the kitchen.

"That's the first one he's eaten," Mitchell says mildly and I head for the kitchen to prevent any trouble.

When I reach the archway between the rooms I am relieved to find Mitchell, Timny, Chris and Justin seated around the table peeling the prawns while Malcolm dices onions and garlic.

"You sure Rosy likes Garlic Prawns?" Justin asks with a glance towards Malcolm.

"She said she does," I confirm.

"Was that before or after you dunked her in the surf?" Malcolm asks with a chuckle.

"Actually I don't think she did say she likes them, but she didn't say she doesn't like them or they disagree with her like ginger does," I say after a moments thought.

"Rosy has a problem with ginger?" Mitchell asks glancing between Malcolm and I.

"She said it upsets her stomach," Malcolm says lightly.

"I'll make sure Mikkarl knows not to use ginger," Mitchell says quietly.

I listen as the conversation flows around the kitchen, dislikes are mentioned and different preferences discussed. I turn my head slightly when I hear light footsteps behind me in the lounge room. Rosy grins at Dwayne as she steps past him, then she is slipping past me to move into the kitchen.

"Anyone want a drink?" Justin asks getting to his feet.

"Pass me a beer would you?" Malcolm asks as he sets a large pan on the stove.

Others are gathering up the discarded prawn shells while Timny gets up to carry a large plastic container over to the bench beside the stove. Justin is handing out drinks as preferences are stated; he hands Rosy her drink and I watch her head into the lounge room.

As I enter the lounge room Rosy is sitting beside Mitchell as the two of them talk quietly. I sit on the lounge and watch tv, glancing towards where Rosy sits every now and then.

"Food's ready!" Malcolm's shout surprises me making me realise I had lost track of time.

"Want me to bring in your plate of food?" I ask Rosy as she goes to get to her feet. She looks at me startled for a second then gives a slight smile and nod.

"Yes thanks."

When I return with our food Rosy is sitting in the middle of the lounge, I hand her her plate and sit beside her. Rosy is silent while she eats and when she is finished she takes her plate to the kitchen before returning to her seat.

"You had enough?" I ask as she settles herself with her unfinished drink.

"Yeah, I'm still full from supper," Rosy says quietly.

We'd stayed at the beach until nearly dark, buying another feed and eating it as we started home. Now several hours later the garlic prawns are a late night snack before either watching the late night movie or heading off to bed.

I take my empty plate to the kitchen and grab myself a drink before heading to the lounge room. I am surprised to find Rosy isn't on the lounge and look around only to find that not only is she not in the lounge room, Mitchell is absent as well.

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