This book was filled with alot, alot of things for Riley to do, alot of questionings on many different thing. Riley has begun her Guardian training, something she never wanted to do in order to hunt down those responsible for hunting and experimenting on her, her brother and other non humans. This is an ongoing arc, where some things will get resolved, other story elements are still being worked through. Riley is developing new skills, which help her on her undercover mission.

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Training sucked. Guardians were far more than just the specialized cops most humans thought them to be - they were judge, jury, and executioners. None of this legal crap the human cops were forced to put up with. Even if my wolf soul sometimes hungered to hunt more than I might wish to acknowledge.

But if there was one thing worse than going through all the training that was involved in becoming a guardian, then it was training with my brother. And right now, Rhoan was fully aware of the fact that I was trying to pike. And he knew why. I had a hot date with an even hotter werewolf. In precisely one hour. If I left now, I could get home and clean up before Kellen - the hot date in question - came by to pick me up. You should be there to celebrate it with him rather than putting me through the wringer.

He was only playing, and we both knew it. He grinned. And he did invite you along, remember. I want to play with him, not you. Gautier was just a murdering freak. He might be a guardian, and he might not have done anything wrong just yet, but he was one of the bad guys. He was also a clone made for one specific purpose - to take over the Directorate. Rhoan made another feint. This time the baton skimmed my knuckles, stinging but not breaking skin.

I resisted the urge to shake the pain away and shifted my stance a little, readying for the real attack. I blew out a frustrated breath, lifting the sweaty strands of hair from my forehead. Not only could I hear his light steps on the vinyl mats as he circled around me, but I could track the breeze of his spicy, leathery scent.

Both were now approaching from behind. I dove out of the way, twisting around even as I hit the mat, and lashed out with a foot. The blow connected hard and low against the back of his leg, and he grunted, his form reappearing as he stumbled and fought to remain standing. I scrambled upright, and lunged toward him. He scooted well out of reach and shook his head. Not this evening, anyway.

Sex was an ingrained part of our culture - we needed it as much as a vampire needed blood. I blew out another breath, and tried to think calm thoughts. But if I did succeed in beating him, then Jack might take that as a sign I was ready for the big one. That I was never going to be ready for it, no matter how much training I got. Not that Rhoan had actually said that last one. Fighting him makes guardians ready for what they may face out there.

Not to mention all the things given life in his labs - abominations nature would never have created, creatures born for two purposes only. To kill as ordered, and to die as ordered. A chill ran across my skin. I licked my lips, and tried to concentrate on Rhoan. If I had to get him down on the mat to get out of here, then I would. I wanted, needed, to grab a little bit more of a normal life before the crap set in again.

Because it was coming. I could feel it. A shadow flickered across one of the windows lining the wall to the right of Rhoan. This arena was on sublevel 5, right next to the guardian sleeping quarters.

Which, amusingly, did contain coffins. Not that any humans ever came down here. That would be like leading a lamb into the midst of a hungry den of lions. To say it would get ugly very quickly would be an understatement.

Only briefly, but that half-second gave me an idea. I twisted, spinning and lashing out with one bare foot. My heel skimmed his stomach, forcing him backward. His baton arced around, his blow barely avoiding my shin, then he followed the impetus of the movement so that he was spinning and kicking in one smooth motion.

He nodded approvingly. The slap of wood against flesh echoed in the silence surrounding us, and tension ran across his shoulders. I held his gaze, then caught the baton left-handed and started to hit out. Only to pull the blow up short and let my gaze go beyond him. He hit the mat with a loud splat, his surprised expression dissolving quickly into a bark of laughter.

Sometimes my brother could be a real pain in the ass. I hardly call that clingy. Rhoan actually loved Liander. Hell, we barely even knew each other beyond the realms of sex. And at least Liander had stuck with Rhoan, through good times and bad. Though given we were sharing some mighty erotic dreams, I doubted walking away was a real option for either of us right now. You have to be.

His smile was sweet, but sort of sad. At all. I want to be free to be with whomever I choose, whenever I chose. And that angered me. Settling down means making a commitment.

Admit that to yourself - and him - if nothing else. And I hope you take note of that advice in your own life. Take advice? Nor was me actually taking some of my own advice. I gave him the baton, then shoved him gently toward the exit. He had a vested interest in keeping me safe and whole. Not only because he wanted me on this mission, but because he wanted me as a full-fledged guardian.

Grinning slightly, I headed down the other end of the arena where my towel and water bottle waited. I grabbed the towel and wrapped one end around my ponytail, squeezing the sweat from my hair before wiping the back of my neck and face.

It was just as well I could shower here - with the way my luck had been running of late, Kellen would be waiting for me by the time I got home. And as much as most wolves preferred natural scent over synthetic, right now I was just a little too overwhelmingly natural. I reached out to collect the water bottle, then froze as awareness surged, prickling like fire across my skin. Rhoan had left, but I was no longer alone in the arena. My earlier intuition had been right - crap had been about to step back into my life.

And it came in the form or Gautier. Towel still in hand, I casually turned around. He stood at the window end of the arena, a long, mean stick of man and muscle who smelled as bad as he looked. It was a trait that was going to get me in trouble - if not tonight, then sometime in the future. He crossed his arms and smiled. There was nothing nice in that smile.

Nothing sane in his flat brown eyes. And if Jack would let them react. For me. And it was running over and over and over in my mind. He would never have agreed to this. I should have known Jack was up to something. But why would he put me up against Gautier so soon? Most would-be guardians had at least a year before they had the pleasure of Gautier pulping them. Maybe something had happened.


Tempting Evil (Riley Jenson Guardian Series #3)

Tempting Evil Keri Arthur In a world of sorcery and seduction, the nights bring out the beautiful, the damned, and the desired. Here, Riley Jenson is on her own — half werewolf, half vampire, working for an organization created to police the supernatural races. Trusting her superiors and lovers barely more than she trusts her worst enemies, Riley plays by her own set of rules. With two sexy men — a cool, seductive vampire and an irresistibly hot wolf — vying for her attention, Riley must keep focused. Chapter One Training sucked. Guardians were far more than just the specialized cops most humans thought them to be—they were judge, jury, and executioners.


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Tempting Evil



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