It's taken twelve years to earn the official title of Shepherd but she's now mostly trained, fairly effective, and the first female in over two centuries to hold the position as protector of animals. All animals...
The Territorial Council isn't thrilled with her new title of Shepherd, but they don't have any more control over the appointment than they have over her. All they can really do is wait for her to screw something up - which Alex is determined not to do.
Everything changes when a chance encounter with a genetically modified Shifter leaves Alex shaken and initiates a quest to locate its maker.Despite years of training, Alex finds herself woefully unprepared to tackle the new threat.
To make matters worse, she must work with a mysterious man who's been trying to kill her since the day they met...
Rough hands lifted my body to pull my soggy clothes away despite my meager protests, as they wrapped me in a scratchy, but very warm, blanket. Angry voices argued, the harsh sounds fading in and out of my hazy mind. Too tired to protest the bothersome noises and coarse treatment, I instead focused on opening my eyes. Brock, Billy and Daniel stood over me, peering anxiously down as my movement abruptly brought their argument to a halt.
“Hey guys,” I mumbled, feeling queasy as a wave of nausea threatened to overtake me. I forced myself to sit up anyway. White-hot pain jolted me into full awareness as my body registered its new injuries. My eyes slowly focused with a brave attempt to ignore the screaming pain in my shoulder and leg. My clothing was slick from blood but how much was mine remained to be seen. Billy’s calloused hands touched my back, supporting me as I leaned forward. For once, I welcomed his support as I surveyed the scene.
The scent of recently cut lawn enveloped me, signifying we were still at the golf course. My mind began to clear with this information and I inched towards the gate of the pickup. I let Billy help me slide to the edge of the truck, then shook him off. I needed to know the extent of my injuries.
If the pain was anything to go by, I didn’t want to see the actual wounds yet. The pain in my shoulder had subsided to a dull ache, which told me that wasn’t my worst injury. I knew which injury was the worst — the deep lacerations that ran the length of my upper thigh. Nothing appeared to be broken and for that, a wave of gratitude washed over me. The last thing I needed was a broken bone. Stitches were something I could live with. At the very least, they healed faster.
“Where are the cats?” My words came out slurred. “I can’t get a read on them.”
An infuriated snarl from what sounded like a very large mountain lion in the cage behind me answered my question.
Startled, I lurched forward and promptly fell off the back of the truck, hitting the ground with a thud. Looking up from the hard pavement, I eyed the big cat in the reinforced cage.
“They’re in cages, Alex.” Brock pulled his hand through his hair, observing my shaky response. “Geez. You really can’t get a read on them…”
About the author:
While Stacy Mantle is most well-known as the Pack Leader of the popular website, PetsWeekly.com, however she is rapidly gaining a fan base in the genre of fantasy with the publication of Shepherd’s Moon, the first book in her Alex Wilde “Shepherd” series.
Stacy has a B.A. in English, a post-baccalaureate in Secondary Education, and an MBA with an emphasis on Marketing. She is active in animal rescue and is a nationally-known pet industry authority. She currently resides in the deserts of the Southwest with several cats, a few dogs, and a very understanding husband.