Hi! *waves* Thank you, lovely Nell, for letting me drop by today. I have a little story out and thought I’d tell you about it 😁 It’s called The Cake Shop, and it’s a short fated mate tale.
I know I’m visiting the queen of short stories, and she certainly doesn’t have a problem forming a connection between her characters despite only having a few pages at her disposal. I, on the other hand, cheat.
Fated mates is my go-to trope when I’m to write something short – in all fairness, I have a lot of fated mates in my longer stories too. I like the idea of there being someone out there meant for your even if you’re a monster (shifter, vampire, magic-user or whatever). Someone who’s perfect for you.
I often write interspecies couples because differences interest me, and I guess I could claim interspecies here too. York is a wolf shifter and Torbjorn is a bear shifter. In this story, I don’t focus on their differences, though.
And whether having fated mates is cheating or not, it speeds up the process of the characters forming a connection. It makes everything easier when everyone knows who they belong to… that’s the idea at least.
In The Cake Shop, Torbjorn knows York is his mate, but he plans to ignore it. Nothing in this world will make him mate with a wolf. At least, that’s what he tells himself LOL.
York, on the other hand, is just happy he’s found his mate, he doesn’t care what species he is. He realises he needs some time to convince Torbjorn they’ll be perfect together, and what better way to buy himself some time than to use the pouring rain as an excuse to get Torbjorn to let him stay for a bit.
Perhaps I should tell you that it’s called The Cake Shop because that’s the name of Torbjorn’s bakery. York is a member of the same pack as Zev in The Drunken Dog and Roarak in Cup o’ Sugar. They can all be read as standalone stories though, so no need to panic 😆
I wrote The Cake Shop for one of JMS Books’ either-or calls. They’re short story calls where the author gets to pick one word or the other and write a story to it. This time we could choose from either Rain or Shine. I chose rain.
York Winter and his packmates are attacked by a rivaling werewolf pack at a lumberyard. Injured and exhausted, York runs into a part of town he’s not familiar with, and when the enemy is closing in, he takes his chances and escapes into a bear-owned bakery.
Torbjorn Holt doesn’t do people, and he doesn’t do wolves no matter what the pull in his heart is trying to tell him. He’s learned his lesson and will not have wolves in the bakery, and he’ll definitely not mate one. Luckily, York isn’t too badly injured, so Torbjorn doesn’t feel bad about kicking him out into the rain.
York can’t believe what’s happening. He’s finally found his mate, but Torbjorn refuses to let him stay. Torbjorn will never trust a wolf again, and if York doesn’t leave soon, he’ll knock him out with a rolling pin and dump him in the alley. York has to make Torbjorn understand he means him no harm, but how will he do that when Torbjorn refuses to talk to him?
Paranormal Gay Romance / 12,864 words
Torbjorn cradled his head in his hands, his elbows resting on one of the two islands in the kitchen. He had to get the wolf out of here. His heart was banging hard and a roar bounced around in his skull.
Torbjorn jumped. “Get out!” Shit, he’d been so focused on himself he hadn’t noticed the man coming closer. “Don’t bleed in my kitchen.”
“I don’t care.” York, who named their kid York? He tried the name out in his head. It wasn’t too bad. York. He could say it on a sigh. “Go clean up.”
“You’re not gonna help me?” York grinned, though he was too pale to make it look good.
“No, I’m not gonna help you. You’re gonna bandage yourself up if you still need to, and then you’re gonna leave.”
York frowned. “I can’t leave. You’re my—”
“Leave!” Torbjorn tore off toward the walk-in fridge. The cool air wrapped around him as he pulled the door shut. He should have dragged York out into the alley when he’d had the chance. Alexandra would have protested, but she was already convinced he was a nutcase so it didn’t matter.
He made a quick inventory of the cream, milk, and eggs while he waited for York to leave the kitchen. He must have gone into the restroom by now. If he snuck out of the fridge and hurried up the stairs to his apartment, he could come down and lock up in half an hour or so when York had left. Nodding to himself, he counted to a hundred and opened the fridge door.
York was leaning against the closest island, his hurt arm cradled to his chest. Torbjorn couldn’t breathe. “What are you doing here? I told you to leave.”
“I need help.”
“No, you don’t.” It was a scratch.
“I’m right-handed, can’t do shit with my left.” He shook his unhurt left arm.
“I’m sure you can manage without a band-aid. It’s not like you’re bleeding to death.”
York smiled. “So, you wanted to drag me out into the alley and feed me to the wolves?”
“Alexandra has too soft a heart.”
York nodded. “But you don’t.”
“No, so get out of here.”
“You’re a bear, right?”
Torbjorn didn’t want to talk.
“I always assumed I’d end up with a wolf.”
“Well, I won’t, so either clean up and leave or leave as you are.”
York took a step in his direction which made Torbjorn take a step back. Frowning, York stopped. “Could you at least help me put on a band-aid?”
Torbjorn gritted his teeth. He didn’t want to go anywhere near York.
“Whose territory is this?”
“Mine.” It wasn’t big, he only had three blocks on the outskirts of the city and the small forest separating the residential buildings from the industrial ones. It wasn’t much, but he hardly ever shifted into a bear—nothing good came from shifting—so it didn’t matter.
The wolves had the northern parts of the city, and the vampires ruled the south. Had he known what he knew now when he moved here, he’d have looked for a building fit for a bakery in the southern parts of the city instead of the northern. He wouldn’t have minded vampires as neighbors. The northern and the western parts were mostly shifter-run, though not by any large packs or prides or whatever they called themselves, so there were always struggles.
Torbjorn only wanted to be left alone. He defended his area when he needed to, but he didn’t care what happened outside his borders.
Torbjorn glared at him. “Not big, but mine, so don’t get any ideas.” Fuck, he couldn’t fight off a pack of wolves.
“Don’t worry. We can hardly hold what we have. Expanding isn’t on our list of wants right now.” York watched him with a blank expression. “You don’t have a… sleuth, is it?”
“No, you don’t have a pack or no it’s not called a sleuth?”
“It’s called a sleuth.”
York nodded. “Help me?”
Torbjorn growled but stepped closer. “But then you’re leaving.”
York didn’t respond.
About Ofelia Gränd
Ofelia Gränd is Swedish, which often shines through in her stories. She likes to write about everyday people ending up in not-so-everyday situations, and hopefully also getting out of them. She writes romance, contemporary, paranormal, Sci-Fi and whatever else catches her fancy.
Her books are written for readers who want to take a break from their everyday life for an hour or two.
When Ofelia manages to tear herself from the screen and sneak away from her husband and children, she likes to take walks in the woods…if she’s lucky she finds her way back home again.
Find Ofelia on social media