A to Z Challenge, Day 13: M Is For Mitch

Our next book in the Chicagoland Shifters will shift focus from Doc to Mitchell Brayden, one of the tigers in Neal’s unit.  A smartass tough guy, Mitch doesn’t seem like the kind to settle down.  But when he meets Lupe Salazar, his wandering days might be over for good.

He got out a clean-ish t-shirt and some shorts and ruffled his hair. A brief detour in the bathroom took care of everything including his teeth and he emerged to find Mitch talking to TJ.

Jealously flared through him so fast he almost felt dizzy.

“Mornin’,” TJ drawled, sipping from what looked like a brand-spanking clean coffee mug.

“Yeah. What are you doing here?”

TJ did a slow blink and set the Sports Illustrated down. “If I say drinkin’ coffee, you gonna kick my ass?”

“I might,” Mitch shot back.

“Here,” Lupe interrupted, thrusting another clean mug filled with black stuff at him. “Drink. Sit. I cook.”

“‘Drink, sit, I cook,’ huh,” Mitch echoed. He sat. “You do windows?”

“Why? You need them washed?” Lupe asked, craning his head around to peer at them.

Mitch laughed. “Slow down, dude! I’m just kidding!”

Lupe shrugged. “I make eggs and bacon. American breakfast. You like this?”

“I like this,” Mitch told him, grinning.

TJ kicked him under the table.

“What the fuck?” he growled, glaring.

TJ tipped his head at Lupe, like he meant it.

Christ. Worse than a fucking wife, TJ. “What can I do to help, Lupe?”

TJ smiled slightly.

Ass hat.

“Nothing, Mitch. You just relax, let Lupe make food. I clean dishes too.”

“You… dude, you don’t have to do that!”

“Is already done,” Lupe told him.

TJ looked up, and then over at the sink. He frowned and squinted at Mitch.

Like he was supposed to get it.

“Lupe, you don’t have to do the dishes, man,” Mitch told him.

“You said I’m yours, Mitch. I do the dishes.”

He went cold. “Lupe – ”

“Is okay, Mitch. You have a dishwasher.”

His eyebrows went all the way up his forehead and tried to climb clear off his head. “Um…”

TJ stared at him, his face reflecting Mitch’s shock. Mitch shrugged. TJ glanced at Lupe. “Don’t take advantage.”

“Dude!” Mitch protested.

TJ sighed. “Too late?”

Heat flared into Mitch’s face from a blush and he glared at TJ.

TJ just snorted and drank his coffee.

“Toast!” Mitch blurted, and shot to his feet.

“What?” Lupe asked, looking over from the skillet.

Fuck, but it smelled good.

“I’ll make us some toast,” Mitch told him. “You do that, and I’ll… um… I’ll do this…” He trailed off, feeling lame.

“Good idea, there, cowboy,” TJ murmured from behind him.

“Thanks,” Mitch said acidly.

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