Mac (Mammoth Forest Wolves Book 2)(10)

By: Kimber White

Maybe. But, not yet. Woods’s eyes softened and he gave me a genuine smile as he held out his arm, gesturing toward the path leading to Camden Hall.

Woods and Summers waited, hands behind their backs in a military posture as I took the steps to the front entrance two at a time. I looked back and gave them a polite wave as I headed inside. When I opened the door, it earned me a shocked look from Jasmine Russell, the student receptionist. She craned her neck to try and see who I’d been waving at.

“Are you nuts?” she whispered. “It’s half an hour past curfew, Eve.”

“Are you going to report me?” I challenged her. Jasmine was a world-class busybody, but I didn’t think she had it out for me.

Jasmine’s eyes darted to the security camera pointed at the front doors. I’d managed to slip in when they were pointed at the stairs. In another ten seconds, they’d swing back toward the desk.

“You’re luckier than smart tonight, Eve,” Jasmine smiled. “But please, for my sake, don’t make a habit of that.”

Nodding, I leaned across the desk. “Anything else exciting happening tonight?”

Jasmine let out an exasperated breath. “You’d know more than me. You wanna tell me where you guys have been, or is it better if I don’t know?”

I blanched. “We guys? What are you talking about?”

It was Jasmine’s turn to look a little shocked. “Oh, come on. I’d expect this from Nikki, not you.”

Nikki. My heart raced and my throat ran dry. “Jaz, I mean it. What are you talking about? What about Nikki?”

Jasmine looked genuinely confused. “I thought you were with her. Well, shit. Eve, she hasn’t come back. She left just a few minutes before you did.”

“Right,” I said. “She was heading down to the Fitness center. But that was like two hours ago.”

Jasmine chewed her bottom lip. I didn’t like the look she was giving me one bit. She was the kind of girl who relished knowing something you didn’t and then took her own sweet time filling you in. It made her feel important. On this, I wouldn’t have cared. But, there was something in the air tonight. And she’d taken a weird phone call from Deputy Joel Wisher right before she left.

“What the hell, Jasmine?”

She raised a dark brow. “Hey, none of my business.”

“Uh, you’re making it your business by bringing me into it. You might as well spill it.”

Jasmine ruffled some papers on the desk and closed her laptop. “Hey, I like Nikki. Everybody likes Nikki. She’s fun. She’s nice. I can look the other way when you come in late for curfew once. I’ll even do it for Nikki tonight too. If you don’t want to tell me what’s going on, that’s fine. But, I know for a fact she’s not down at the Fitness center, Eve. She left the building before you did and she hasn’t come back. I’ve been here for four hours. In another ten minutes, Grace Garner is going to come down here to take over for me. You and I both know Grace isn’t going to keep her mouth shut if Nikki waltzes in here during her shift. So, whatever. Keep your little secrets. It’s fine. It’s just you might want to get word to your roommate to get her butt back here like now.”

I reared back. This was bad. Catastrophic. Jasmine was absolutely right about Grace Garner. She was the kind of person who would just love to cause trouble for Nikki.

So, for the second time in the span of an hour, I found myself covering for someone without knowing all the details. I just prayed that whatever Nikki was doing, it better be good.

“Got it,” I said. “And thanks.”

Jasmine had more to say, but I didn’t give her a chance. Nikki was my mission now, and I didn’t have much time. I couldn’t believe she just straight-up lied to me about where she was going. It wasn’t like her. With Woods and Summers prowling around campus, she wouldn’t make it very far if she was still out there.

I swung by the basement Fitness center before heading upstairs. The place was empty and dark. With no other choice, I headed up to our room. Maybe Nikki was already there. Maybe she’d slipped in when Jasmine was in the bathroom or something. It didn’t seem plausible though. We had to swipe our I.D.s when we left and entered Camden Hall. Jasmine would have checked that before spouting off about her to me. Still, maybe she’d come in with someone else and forgot to swipe her own card. That kind of thing happened all the time.

That had to be it. I liked to describe her as more of a free spirit. But, she wasn’t completely reckless. At least, I hoped not. I took a deep breath before sliding my card over the panel to unlock our dorm room door.