Stolen by her Bear (Black Ridge Bears Shifter Romance Series Book 1) by Felicity Heaton
Saint is a bear shifter on the war path. He just wants to sleep the winter away, but his rowdy neighbours in the remote Rocky Mountains valley have other plans. When the cougar shifter brothers refuse to keep the noise down, he reacts on instinct, kidnapping a beautiful female who smells like sweet berries and tempts him like no other—a female who happens to be mated to one of the brothers.
Holly’s first taste of freedom isn’t going as planned. Escaping her family to join in the winter wedding celebrations at Cougar Creek with her friend Ember sounded fantastic, until a grouchy bear shifter grabs her—a gorgeous male who rouses instincts in her that are startling and powerful, igniting a fierce need to growl and stake a claim on him. A gorgeous bear who might be her fated mate.
Can Holly resist the hungers Saint awakens in her? And when Saint realises his mistake about her identity, can he convince the stunning Holly to give him a second chance?
If you love bear shifter romances featuring hot alpha heroes and strong heroines in an immersive paranormal romance world, the Black Ridge Bears series is for you!
Discover five growly bear shifters guaranteed to become your next book boyfriends in this hot new shapeshifter romance series from New York Times and USA Today international best-selling author Felicity Heaton, set in the same rich and addictive world as her Eternal Mates and Cougar Creek Mates paranormal romance series.
Book 1: Stolen by her Bear
Book 2: Rescued by her Bear – Coming Aug 2021
Book 3: Saved by her Bear – Coming Aug 2021
Book 4: Unleashed by her Bear – Coming Sept 2021
Book 5: Awakened by her Bear – Coming Oct 2021
No cliffhangers. No cheating. Just passionate paranormal romance books with a guaranteed happily forever after!
EXCERPT: STOLEN BY HER BEAR
Saint scented the air, trying to catch something that would tell him what to expect ahead of him.
He froze, locked up tight as he caught a scent, as warmth spread through him in response, roused a hunger in him that was powerful and commanding.
He dragged in another breath, aching for another delectable hit of that scent. And it was delectable, like sweet berries, and utterly feminine.
Which was enough to set him on edge.
Females didn’t stay at Cougar Creek in winter.
Saint veered off course again, unable to stop himself from tracking the scent through the forest, curiosity gripping him and filling him with a need to find the owner of it. His mouth watered, the hunger clenching his gut growing fiercer as the scent grew stronger. Ahead of him, the bushes and trees gave way to man-made clearings, openings in the forest where small cabins had been constructed.
He stealthily inspected the two cabins he could see, keeping his distance from them. Snow had fallen through the canopy of the forest and was thick on their roofs, and it was pristine on the decks, untouched. No one was staying in them.
Saint banked left, heading down towards the river, to a cabin he knew was there. The raised L-shaped wooden lodge sat at the head of a fifty-foot clearing in the forest, one that stretched down to the creek.
He remained in the shadows of the trees as he moved towards that river, giving the place a wide berth. He eyed the deck and the steps and the ground just beyond them. Someone had cleared the snow away. The place belonged to one of the three brothers of Rath, the alpha of the pride, and it was usually empty over winter.
Looked as if the male was staying this time.
Was he responsible for the ruckus that had woken Saint and his kin?
He sharpened his instincts again and frowned as he sensed more than just Rath and one brother at the Creek. He pinpointed at least five other people, most of them close to the main clearing. One of them was bound to be the female Rath had mated with last year, one Saint had seen for himself a few times.
He thought her name was Ivy, was sure he had heard the alpha cougar call her that a few times when she had been photographing bears near the river. The female was human, and not the only one at the Creek either.
The bastard Storm had a human female of his own. Saint had caught her in the woods last year when she had been running from the male and had scared her witless. He regretted what had happened now, but he had been in a foul mood, his bear at the fore. Their run-in had happened only a week after the Archangel helicopter had come and the need to protect his kin had been strong, fierce enough that he had viewed her as a threat.
Saint had figured Gabi for a huntress, still thought she was a member of Archangel and one day Storm was going to wake up to find a blade in his heart.
He backtracked up to the two empty cabins and headed past them into another area of dense scrub that provided cover as he moved towards the heart of Cougar Creek.
His ears twitched.
He eased lower and peered through the bushes and trees towards the clearing. Stilled as he spotted two males and a female in an area that had been cleared of snow near the top of the long sloping strip of green that formed the centre of the cougar’s territory. The felines had been busy. It looked as if they had cleared snow in a patch roughly sixty feet in all directions from the front of Rath’s cabin. That cabin sat nestled among the pines and spruces, its back to the forest that covered the base of the mountain, facing the clearing and the creek at the bottom of it.
What were they up to?
Rath straightened and planted the tip of his snow shovel against the ground, leaned on the handle of it as he pushed his thick black hat up and wiped his brow. He pulled his dark green scarf down and undid the top fastening of his black winter jacket.
“We taking a break now?” the male with him growled, a hint of warmth and teasing in his tone as he set down his own shovel and tugged at the blue scarf wrapped around his throat. Like Rath, he wore a black protective coat and matching hat, and irritatingly kept his back to Saint so he couldn’t make out which brother he was. “Only been at it an hour. Still a lot more snow to clear.”
Rath huffed and scrubbed a hand down his face, over a thick dark beard. “Remind me again why we’re doing this.”
The big male chuckled, the warmth in his voice lingering. “Love, apparently. Not sure why I got pulled into shovelling duties though. Storm should be here, clearing the way for this ceremony. Where is he anyway?”
This time, Rath was the one who chuckled, his grey eyes brightening with it. “Where do you think?”
The male shook his head. “I have half a mind to go bang down his door, but I don’t want to get an eyeful. Flint could at least have offered to help, but he’s about as useful as Storm.”
Flint and Storm weren’t present then, which meant the big male with Rath was Cobalt. Cobalt was a mad bastard. Saint had never seen a cougar fight like he did, as if he had nothing left to live for.
Rath and Cobalt were as big as each other, packed with muscle and good fighters, but if it came to a one-on-one fight, Saint could take them. Provided they didn’t resort to low blows like their brother Flint.
He shuddered at the memory, his balls aching. It had taken him weeks to heal them after the male had run his claws over them during a brawl. He still hadn’t forgiven the cougar, wanted a piece of him, and Storm, for the scars they had given him. A low growl curled up his throat, his blood running hot despite the cold, and he wanted to unleash it but bit it back instead. As much as he wanted a fight, he wanted to sleep more.
Besides, he couldn’t let his foul mood get him into a brawl right now when his body was still recovering from a month-long sleep. He would probably lose and that would only make his mood worse.
Saint drew down a steadying breath and stilled as the delicious scent of berries hit him again. It was weaker now, but still warmed him, roused a hunger to hunt the owner of that scent and see her for himself.
The door of the cabin behind Rath opened and a female came out, wrapped so heavily in winter clothing that he couldn’t make out much of her face between her colourful striped scarf and woollen hat, or her figure through the thick cream coat and brown ski pants.
He knew her scent though.
In fact, he knew most of the scents of the females belonging to the brothers. He had put Gabi’s scent to memory when he had captured her, and he had done the same with Yasmin’s when Flint had come to Black Ridge looking for a fight in order to impress her.
Maybe he had imagined the sweet scent in the woods.
Berries were his vice after all.
He loved them and found them impossible to resist.
“Come warm up for a few minutes.” She looked at her mate and then at Cobalt.
Both males nodded and let their shovels fall into the thin layer of snow, and Rath waited for Cobalt to reach him before they both started towards the cabin.
“Does Ember want to drop in for a warming drink too?” Ivy said with a look at Cobalt.
Ember. Saint wasn’t familiar with that female.
“She went for a walk.” Cobalt tugged his black hat off, revealing mussed blond hair. “But she’ll be back in time for the practice run.”
Rath glanced at his brother. “Did your certificate come through?”
“Yup. I’m officially ordained.” Cobalt flashed a grin at him and chuckled. “That’s not something I ever thought I would be. Not many cougars out there needing this sort of thing.”
Saint watched them go inside, debated going to the cabin and speaking to Rath, but fatigue was rolling up on him, his eyelids feeling heavy again as the fresh air lost its effect on him and his bear instincts growled at him to go back to sleep. He knew what the noise was now. It wasn’t humans or danger, just a bunch of irritating cougars celebrating something. That should be enough to calm the instinct to protect himself and his pride, and allow all of them to get back to sleep.
He rose to his feet and turned away from the cabin, picked his way to the animal track and followed it back towards the Ridge. Maybe he would fix himself some food before he hit the sack again, something to take the edge off his hunger and tide him over while he slept. He was clearly hungry.
Because he was fantasising about sweet juicy summer berries again.
Could smell them stronger now.
He frowned and slowed his pace, lifted his head and drew down a breath. The scent was stronger. His mouth watered, heat suffusing him, and he pivoted on his heel, was tracking the smell of berries before he realised what he was doing.
Saint dropped to his haunches when he spotted a lone figure ahead of him, near the frozen river.
He dragged down a breath, every inch of him locking up tight as he caught her scent.
Sweet berries and a hint of vanilla.
He scented something else on her too. She was cougar. Was she Ember? Did she belong to Cobalt?
Saint told himself to go, but found himself easing lower instead to observe her. Silent. A predator.
She tilted her head up as she turned, raised her gloved hand to cover her eyes as she peered at the canopy. Birds sang there but he paid them no heed, was too arrested by the sight of her.
Raven hair spilled from beneath her dark purple woollen hat, cascading over a form-fitting weatherproof coat in the same colour, and grey eyes with a strong hint of emerald sparkled as rosy lips curled into the semblance of a smile.
His heart started at a hard pace, drumming against his ribs as his blood heated.
She was beautiful.
A need to stand and go to her pounded inside him and he struggled to deny it, to remain where he was and merely observe her, studying everything about her. Like the fact she had to stand at least a foot shorter than his six-seven, and looked as if she weighed nothing more than a feather. There was a delicate sense of beauty about her, with her porcelain skin and the hint of pink on her cheeks, and he lost himself in watching her, the world around him fading away.
Until there was only her.
Her slender shoulders suddenly stiffened, her smile disappearing as she tensed and went still.
She had sensed him.
Saint lingered, wondering what she would do. Run away or stay?
Seconds seemed to stretch into an eternity as he waited, as her grey-green eyes slowly took in the forest.
Strange disappointment flooded him when she suddenly turned on her heel and walked in the direction of Cougar Creek, her pace brisk, boots chewing up the frozen ground beneath the pines.
Saint stared after her.
Driven to follow.
This is a spin off from her Cougar series, and we also get to catch up with the cougars and their mates. It’s not necessary to read the previous series, but I wouldn’t be surprised if you don’t go back to read them 😉
It’s a five book series, that will introduce us to Saint and his clan. Now in the previous series, the bears come across as a$$holes! Always picking fights and being generally nasty! So I was wondering how the author would spin their stories!
And I was pleasantly surprised. They are grumpy bears, but they are bears that usually sleep through the winter, so if your being woken up by loud cougars and their mates, then wouldn’t you be cross?! We don’t get to meet all the bears in Saint’s clan in this book, but we get hints at their nature and characteristics.
And now Saint has Holly’s scent in his nose, he’s going to follow it to the bitter end! And when he finds her, does he tell her who he is? Does he introduce himself? Nope! He kidnaps her!! And from there it’s just one disaster after another! He thinks he’s kidnapped a cougar mate (as if that’s any better!) he just wants them to be quiet so that his clan and himself can go back to sleep. But Holly isn’t a mate, she’s looking for one, by visiting her friend she’s hoping to find her fated mate and avoid her families matchmaking.
It’s a cute story, not exactly a short story, but not as long as her Eternal Mates Series, which the Cougar and Bear series come from.
And when the pair are separated it’s going to take them both to fight for what they want. Saint wants his mate, and Holly wants the chance to choose who she wants and not what her family chooses for her!
I can’t wait to read the next book and see where it takes the clan.