The Claiming by Cooper Book 4
The Contest by Cooper (Jaxon & Evangeline)
Chapter 18 Evangeline
The lake is packed with people when we arrive. Apparently, everyone had the same idea we did.
From what I understand, this land used to sit idle throughout the year until it was time for that year’s claiming. Since the claiming ended years ago, no one has been here, and during that time, mother nature has staked her claim on this lake. The edges of the lake are lush with plants and flowers and the water is pristine, clear. The waterfall finishes off the image of a tropical getaway hidden deep within a forest, and that’s basically what this place is.
Makayla goes racing into the water and I turn to Alejandro. “Are you on watch duty since dad’s not here?” I ask him.
“How’d you guess?” He asks me, rolling his eyes.
“Who knows, maybe a cute brunette will come to the lake today.” I say, teasing him about the time he’s been spending with Teagan.
I should have known better. “Yeah, and maybe her brother will show up too.” He says, teasing me right back.
“You know Alpha Jaxon is already 18.” He says to me.
“I do.” I say, not looking at him and pulling towels out of our bag.
“And you’re nearly 18.” He says, watching me closely.
“And? What’s your point, Al?”
“No point, other than the obvious.”
I stop and look at him. “What’s that?”
He stops, standing to his full height and looking at me. “Evie, I already feel a pull to Teagan and I’m not even 17 yet. She’s a year older than I am and she says she feels it too. If we feel it and we’re both younger than you and Jax…” He lets the rest of the sentence go unsaid. But he doesn’t need to finish.
I do feel a pull to Jaxon, but I can’t let that interfere with this contest. I came here intending to win, and I plan to do that, no matter what.
I’ve been swimming for a while when the man in question comes walking up to the lake with his family. From the shadow of the overhang where I’m currently sitting on a rock ledge, I have a birds-eye view of his fantastic body. He’s wearing swim shorts and nothing else. His skin is golden brown, his chest and arms defined by muscle, sliding down to a narrow waist and hips before ending with muscular thighs and calves. The man is pure Alpha.
As an Alpha, I should be immune, but when it comes to Jaxon, I’m nothing more than a drooling schoolgirl.
I watch as he looks around, noticing when he spots Makayla who is now sunning herself beside the lake. I watch as his eyes narrow and he begins searching the area surrounding the lake and finally, searching the lake until his eyes land on mine. A slow smile spreads across his face.
I see Rowan smack him and he startles, frowning and looking at her before handing her their bag. I guess she was trying to get his attention and he wasn’t paying attention. Neither was I, my focus is completely on him.
As soon as he hands over the bag, he’s moving, heading straight for me. The butterflies in my stomach take flight and I’m filled with anticipation at seeing him again.
He says hello to several people before diving under water. I try to follow his progress, but I’m too low in the water to see him. I’ve just about decided that I’ve lost him somewhere when he pops up right in front of me.
“Oh!” I exclaim.
His hair is wet and water is dripping down his face, his long eyelashes are clumped together by the water and his grey eyes are sparkling with mischief.
“Hello Jaxon,” I say, watching him as he slowly moves closer to me. I feel my heart begin to race. Damn this man is sexy. Is this the mate bond, pulling me toward him, or is it just him?
“Did you sleep well?” He asks, and I feel his fingers, graze my hips under the water. I shiver at the contact, and I watch his eyes darken.
“I did, how about you?” I ask, reaching my hand out to touch the muscles on his stomach. I gently slide my fingers up the squared ridges of his stomach, feeling him quiver at my touch. Oh yeah, I like this strong man becoming putty in my hands.
“I had fantastic dreams.” He says and I can tell by the way he says it that they were about me.
“Care to share?” I ask, feeling his hand follow the path on my stomach that my fingers took on his.
“I don’t think that’s a good idea.” He says, his eyes never leaving mine.
“And why is that?” I ask, once again enjoying our little game. I take a finger and slide it between his pectoral muscles just until my finger gets to the surface and then I slide it back down.
Almost immediately, his finger slides between my breasts, following the same motion.
I bite my lip as my breath hitches, his finger grazes the insides of my breasts as he strokes his way back down. “I wouldn’t want to make you blush.” He says, smirking at me.
“Mmm, that good, huh?” I ask.
He pulls his hand out of the water and gestures for me to come closer. Since there already isn’t much space between us, I have to move close enough that I can feel the heat from his neck against my face. His mouth comes to my ear. “It was really, really good.” He whispers.
I sit back and I know I’m blushing.
I give a coy shrug. “Maybe someday you’ll tell me.” I say.
“Maybe someday, I’ll show you.” He says. I’m fairly certain that the heat of my body is about to make the water around us start to boil when I hear a cry over my head.
A moment later, Jaxon and I are doused with water. Raelyn surfaces laughing. “Gotcha, Jaxon!” She says splashing him and starting to swim away.
“You’re dead meat now, little sister.” He says before taking off after her.
I watch as Jaxon catches Raelyn and she squeals in delight. Then he tosses her into the air, sending her splashing into deeper water.
A couple minutes later, Magdalena comes to sit beside me on the ledge in the water.
“Just so you know, I wasn’t the only one that saw that s*ex*y interaction between you and Super Hotty. Don’t be surprised if Dad says something.”
My eyes snap up and sure enough, I see my father watching Jaxon with narrowed eyes.