Kicked off his home world after losing his mate, Reyvor has made a place for himself on Earth, spending his afternoons drinking and his nights cruising the streets on his Harley. But all of that is about to change. A commotion outside of his motel room just may turn out to be his saving grace.
Hazel has lost everything, but she’d do it all again if it meant escaping the abusive boyfriend who liked to beat on her three girls and herself. Dumpster diving has never been her favorite thing to do, but she doesn’t have a penny to her name and her girls are starving. But when she’s caught, something miraculous happens.
Reyvor knows right away that the petite woman with the large blue eyes needs him. When he hears that this little ragtag family hasn’t eaten in days, he convinces Hazel to accept a warm meal and a place to stay for the night. The girls warm his heart and remind him of what he once wanted out of life. Is it too late to start over?
Hazel is hesitant to trust anyone again with her heart, but Reyvor is determined to make her his. What’s an alien to do when all he wants is a loving family to call his own? He’ll break down her defenses one by one, until she melts against him and begs for his kiss. But can he claim the feisty Hazel without completely losing his heart to her?
All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2016 Jessica Coulter Smith
Reyvor pulled to a stop in front of his door, turned off the bike, and retrieved his bags of clothes. Inside the room, he put everything away and pulled out the pajama pants the girls had talked him into. They felt soft and he thought they would be ideal for lounging around the room, but he’d always slept naked and didn’t intend to stop now.
He changed, braided his hair, and was about to sit down and turn on the TV when he heard a commotion outside. The panic of a female voice sent him into motion and he opened the door to see what was going on. A very small woman was struggling to break free of the motel manager. He noticed three small, very scared children hovering nearby.
“What’s the problem?” he asked as he stepped outside.
“I caught this piece of trash digging through the dumpsters and peeking in the windows. She’s here to steal stuff and I’m calling the cops.”
Her clothes were worn and torn in places, her hair matted and dirty. The children huddling behind her were just as worn and unclean. It took but a moment for him to surmise that they had nowhere to go and were living on the streets. He’d seen several people begging for money on street corners, but the stubborn tilt of the woman’s chin told him she’d never begged for anything in her life.
“Did you stop to think maybe they were merely hungry and looking for food?” Reyvor asked. “Perhaps if you offered them a hot meal they wouldn’t need to dig through the dumpster.”
“I’m not running a charity here. If they want to eat, they’ll pay for it just like everyone else. It’s bad for business having people like this hanging around.”
Reyvor frowned as he saw the shame flash in the woman’s eyes and the flush of embarrassment on the cheeks of her children. He didn’t know what had happened to her, why she had fallen so far, but in that moment he determined that he would help her in any way that he could. Despite the grime, he could tell she was an attractive woman, and he couldn’t understand why she didn’t have a male watching over her.
“Let her go,” Reyvor said. “I’ll take responsibility for her.”
The manager eyed him and finally released the woman, shoving her toward Reyvor. She fell against him and his arm immediately went around her. She was slight and he worried that it had been too long since she’d last eaten. The manager stormed off in the other direction and Reyvor addressed the tattered creature in his arms.
“My name is Reyvor and I’d like to help you, if you’ll let me.”
She looked like she might refuse for a moment, but one of the children tugged on her ratty shirt and he saw the stubbornness melt away. Her gaze was adoring as she looked at her children. She smoothed the hair of the one nearest and then turned her gaze up at Reyvor. “I’ll accept your help, but only because my children are hungry. We haven’t eaten in two days.”
“Come inside and I’ll pick up some food for you. The children can rest and watch TV while you wait.”
She hesitated a moment, but nodded her consent, then followed him into his suite. The children settled on the sofa and looked around the room with wide eyes. He handed the eldest child the remote. The mother had yet to take her eyes off him and he wondered what she was thinking.
“I need to step into the other room to change,” he said. “It won’t take long to retrieve food for you. Is there anything in particular you’d like? Or any food allergies I need to know about?”
She shook her head. “Anything will be fine. I appreciate your kindness.”
He looked at the children on the sofa once more and realized they were all three girls. Reyvor couldn’t imagine how difficult it must be to live on the streets with three children, but especially three female children. He would think they wouldn’t be as tough as a boy.
He crouched in front of them. “What are your names?”
The eldest looked to her mother before responding. “I’m Nikki, and my sisters are Winnie and Abby.”
“I’m Reyvor. It’s very nice to meet the three of you. And does your pretty mother have a name?”
The mother in question blushed. “I’m Hazel.”
“Make yourselves at home.”
Reyvor ducked into the bedroom and quickly changed into one of his new pairs of jeans and a T-shirt. After he’d put on his boots, he gathered his keys and wallet, and stepped back into the living room. Four heads turned in his direction and for a moment he wasn’t sure if he should say something. With a smile, he let himself out and got on his bike, revving the engine before taking off out of the parking lot.
What the hell did children on Earth eat?