Jumping the Bull - Jenn Burke
Ben Beaufort, badass bison
* * *
Everyone who looks at Ben and sees his six-foot-plus, muscular build assumes he’s in construction. Or the military. Or something that requires brawn over brains. In truth, he’s a mild-mannered human resources professional—or at least he was, until he got laid off. Now he’s looking for a second career as a Furry United Coalition agent, to discover how truly badass he can be.
* * *
Oliver Zuraw, whoop-ass whooping crane
* * *
Oliver’s enjoying a second career too, from exotic dancer to the FUC Academy’s yoga instructor. Big, badass men like Ben are totally his type—but he’s sworn them off, because they’re never good news. Except Ben is defying all of Oliver’s preconceived notions and making him wonder if maybe this bison is just the right type of badass for him.
* * *
A simple undercover mission that turns out to be not so simple
* * *
When an undercover mission needs a bison shifter, Ben jumps at the chance to put his training to use. A twist of events forces Oliver and Ben to pretend to be married…which leads to an invitation to work for the bad guy on his bad guy ranch doing bad guy things. There’s no way they can pass up the opportunity to infiltrate the criminal operation.
* * *
Even if they’re a recruit and a civilian instructor who barely know what they’re doing.
* * *
And even if there’s only one bed waiting for them.
Does this premise and world seem familiar? That’s because it is based off the Eve Langlais Furry United Coalition. Eve Langlais has invited her author friends to come and play in her world. To find out more, visit Worlds.EveLanglais.com.
Ben Beaufort managed to turn the knob of his apartment door without dropping the box in his hands, then kicked it open with maybe a little more force than necessary. It popped back and slammed into the wall, and he grimaced at the crash.
“What the—” His sister, Diana, burst out of her room down the hall, then stopped and stared at him. “You’re home early.”
“Yep.” The word was short, abrupt, and he sighed. The sudden mess of his life wasn’t Didi’s fault.
“And with a box. Why do you have a box?” She came closer, and noticed what was in the box. “Oh my god, did you—”
“Get laid off?” He put the box on the floor next to the entryway table and turned his attention to the spot where the door had connected with the wall. Yep, that was a dent. Just a small one, since the spring thing had taken the brunt of the force, but something he’d have to fix before the super saw it. He closed the door and faced his sister. “I did indeed. They ‘restructured’ the HR department to make it more efficient and focused and blah blah blah.”
He didn’t protest when Didi enveloped him in her arms. She wasn’t small, by any means—in a crowd of women, she towered over them, being more than six feet tall and sharing the thick, solid build of her inner bison cow. It was times like this that he loved the fact that they’d chosen to live together when they moved off the ranch and into the city. Ben leaned into her embrace, revelling in it like he would a good wallow in soft dirt.
“You loved that job,” Didi said softly.
He nodded against the crook of her shoulder and neck. He really had. He’d been with InnovaTech for ten years. It was his home away from home. The foundation of his career. He’d worked at another, smaller company for his first couple of years out of university, but InnovaTech had been where he’d bloomed and come into his own as a human resources professional. His manager had been thrilled with his contributions, both in reducing the workload of their team with his innovative changes to their processes, to the fun events he’d suggested to raise the morale of all employees on a regular basis. Guess all that meant nothing. The executives didn’t care that he’d put his heart and soul into his job. That he’d cared for the people he worked with and for. He was just a number. An expendable, erasable number.
“Aw, baby.” Didi squeezed him harder. “You know what you need?”
“Definitely. But tomorrow. Tonight, you need junk food and tequila.”
He lifted his head. “Margaritas?”
“All the margaritas you can drink. And we can brainstorm a plan for your future.”
It was the best, terrible idea. “Let’s do it.”
Ben didn’t even know