My world is falling apart…
Everything I have built over the last four years is falling apart.
“Mate…” he mouths, his l!ps curving into a surprised smile.
I whimper, backing away slowly as my heart pounds in my chest.
“Not again…” I try to run but my legs refuse to move, Zane’s eyes holding me hostage against the table as he walks towards me.
He raises his hand and I flinch as he gently strokes my cheek, his thumb wiping the tears I didn’t know had fallen.
The sparks… Were they always this strong? I wonder as my body shivers beneath his fingertips.
His smile widens as I lean into his hand and close my eyes to enjoy the tingling of his touch.
Alpha of the Silver Crest Pack, reject you, Natalia Vasquez as my mate and Luna…
The memory of Jack and Christian’s rejection and the pain they had caused me replays in my mind and I jerk away from Zane’s hand, afraid to be hurt again.
His eyes fill with bewilderment and sadness as I push him aside and get to my feet, eager to get as far away as possible from him.
My eyes fill with tears as I attempt to storm away “Let go of me, as***ole!”
I snarl, yanking at my arm as he just stares at me in shock, his mouth hanging open but no words escaping his luscious l!ps.
“I said let go!” I snap, giving one last hard yank.
Zane finally let’s go but I collide into the table, spilling the glasses and their contents all over my clothes.
His cheeks flush in embarrassment, butterflies fluttering in my belly at the adorable frantic panic on his face.
Snap out of it, I scold myself, wiping down my wet clothes with my hands.
Before I know it, a pair of strong, muscular arms lift me off my feet and I yelp in surprise when I realize Zane is carrying me bridal style to the employee only area.
“Put me down!” I shriek as we make it to the backrooms, thrashing my body about viciously.
He obliges, setting me down gently on a chair. His body shaking slightly, he takes his right fist and moves it in a clockwise motion over his chest.
“Sorry.” I know very little sign language but I understand his apology and scowl at him.
“Apology not accepted, j**rk,”
I huff, grabbing him by the wrist and dragging him to one of the changing rooms.
Ensuring it’s completely empty, I turn to Zane and narrow my reasons that infuriate me, I feel the strange urge to comfort him.
“I know what you are,” I say through gritted teeth, my fists clenching at my sides at the thought of going through this again.
“I know you’re a wolf… and I don’t want any part of it.”
Angry tears spill onto my cheeks but I wipe them away before I proceed.
“I, Talia Ramos, reject you…” I stop mid rejection when I realize I don’t know his full name.
“What is your name?” I ask meekly, his eyes filling with relief.
He clamps his mouth shut and shakes his head once more, inching slowly towards the door.
“What is your name?” I huff, stomping my foot angrily.
“What is your rank?”
His face grows cold as he pinches his index and middle fingers against his thumb.
“What do you mean no? I don’t want a mate!”
He shrugs, pinching his fingers together again and turning the knob on the door with his other hand.
Fearing he might escape before I can complete the rejection, I lunge at him, wrapping my arms around his neck and slamming my body against his to block the door. His arms go instinctively to my waist and I begin to thrash my arms at him.
“What is your name?” I shriek, pounding my closed fists against his chest.
Zane hooks his foot around my ankle and flips me around so that and pins them above my head, his eyes staring down at me.
The incredible sparks tingle down my arms as he holds me in place and I force myself to focus on my heavy breathing to keep from staring at his l!ps.
For several minutes, he doesn’t say a word, just stares at me, as if unsure what else to do.
His eyes, which had been full with hope when he first looked at me, are now stone cold and almost lifeless. I know I must be hurting him, but I simply could not accept another mate.
Christian had been my mate.
He had promised to love me forever…
And he didn’t.
What made Zane any different? What lies would he tell me too? Zane clenches his jaw and swallows hard before suddenly releasing me and gently pushing me aside to open the door.
He pinches his fingers on last time to say no and storms out of the room, leaving me all alone.
“I’m sorry,” I whisper to myself as I run to Ron’s office.
“But I will know your name… and I will reject you.”
Jane back and claim my mate as I storm down the hall, but Grayson’s voice is loud and unwavering.
“I, Talia Ramos, reject you…”
I have endured ab**use and to**ture for years but nothing could prepare me for the pain I felt in my chest when she uttered those words to me.
I sensed her presence as I signed my paperwork, Grayson humming with excitement.
The thoughts of every person within a 20 meter radius began flooding my head, drumming against my ears and filling my mind until I thought I would burst…
But her scent made the voices go away.
It was soothing, like lilac and rain and it lingered all over the club, drawing me to it like a beacon.I searched for the scent but in a room full of hundreds of drunks, it was difficult to locate her.
Then I saw her… Talia… the most beautiful girl my eyes had ever seen …being touched by another man.
Grayson growled viciously at me to protect her and I felt the urge to rip the man’s throat out.
I threw him out and an overwhelming happiness overcame me when her eyes met mine.
She was human but I did not care. She was perfect to me.
Grayson howled with joy and for the first time since I was kid, I heard his deep voice whisper the word I never thought I would say: MATE.
But as luck would have it, Talia already hated me.
The angry look father glared at me whenever I was near him. I wanted to comfort her but of course, she did not want my touch.
She did not want me.
Of course she wants us! Grayson growls.
she’s just afraid…
Would you shut up!? I can’t think! I mutter back as I open the back door to the main venues, a blast of music nearly shredding my ear drums. I need to think…
I don’t know what to do.
Strobing lights flicker at me, fog spilling from the stage where three topless str!ppers dance around the poles while a cheering crowd watches.
I race to Micah at the bar, hoping he might have advice for me and I pull out my pen and notepad from my back pocket.
“I need your help,” I write, moving a chair and taking a seat.
“I’m a little busy,” he replies with a shrug as he pours out two vodka cranberries.
I am on the verge of a full blown panic attack. I need help now!
“I found my mate,” I write back.
I shove the page in his face and his eyes widen in shock.
“No f****g way!”
He exclaims, his eyes scanning the area for her.
“She knows what lam,” I scribble frantically.
“She wants to reject me. Please help me. She doesn’t know my name voice, leaning in close to my face.
“A wolf?” I nod and he lets out a squeak.
“Holy s**t!” He gasps, pouring out a whiskey and handing it to me.
“On the house dude. But I need details. Spill!”
A very pretty waitress smiles as she rests her hand on my shoulder.
I crinkle up my pages, quickly stuffing them in my pocket to hide the evidence, and offer her a polite smile.
“I’m Jade, by the way,” she grins, twirling a strand of hair around her finger.
“And you must be Zane.”
I meekly smile, finishing my drink in one gulp and attempting to shrug her hand off my shoulder.
She doesn’t take the hint, however and instead forces her way onto my lap.
Micah nearly bursts into laughter at my embarrassment.
“So what are you boys talking about?”
She shouts over the loud music, wrapping her arms around my neck. I shift uneasily in my seat, looking around to see if Talia is nearby. I do not want her getting the wrong impression of me.
“Jade, get off you w**e,” Micah laughs.
“You’re making the boy nervous.”
Jade smirks and leans in close to my face, her breath brushing up against my l!ps.
“I don’t make you nervous, do I?” Get her off! Grayson snarls.
What if Talia sees this? around so she can’t attempt to mount me again.
She scoffs, grabbing her tray and storming off.
“Don’t mind Jade,” Micah laughs.
“She’ll get over it.” I grab my pen and notepad again.
“HELP ME.” He thinks it over as he pours out several drinks for some clients nearby.
“Look,” he sighs as he finishes the last drink.
“In the time that I’ve known Talia, I’ve never seen her date ANYONE EVER. She’ll have a fling here or there but never anything serious. Her only concern is Dakota.”
My l!ps curl up in an involuntary snarl, Grayson demanding to know who this Dakota person is.
Micah picks up on the jealousy and smirks.
“Cool it, bud. Dakota is her three year old son. He’s her world. She lives for that little boy,” he chuckles as he hands me another whiskey.
“He’s your only competition.”
I blush with embarrassment and a million questions flutter into my mind, but for now, only one concerns me.
“Where’s the father?” I ask, knowing the father could make things tricky.
Before he can answer anything, Talia’s scent fills my nostrils, and once again stuff my papers in my pocket.
Refusing to be rejected tonight, I scramble out of my seat and make a bee line for the dancefloor, hoping to lose her in the crowd of swaying bodies now had my name.
I force myself through the crowd, zig zagging in different directions to throw her off until I pop out on the opposite side of the building.
To my horror, she’s close behind me.
As she steps out of the dancefloor however, a group of girls at a table call her over, demanding a new round of drinks.
She glares at me as she jots down the order and I take advantage to make my great escape to the upper lever where I was supposed to keep an eye on the dancers giving private shows.
I manage to avoid seeing Talia for the rest of the night, keeping myself busy by answering any disturbance calls from my earpiece.
During the closing call, I stay with the other guards and help move around chairs and clean up after the clients.
The waitresses are the first to leave, but I stay back with Micah to help with cleaning up and watch helplessly as Talia storms out.
“Well at least you made it through tonight without being rejected,”
Micah sighs as we carry large garbage bags to the dumpsters.
“Niki texted me to let me know she babysat Dakota, so we’ll just stay here a little longer to make sure you don’t run into Talia …buy you a little time to think over what you plan on doing with her.”
True to his word, Micah and I don’t return to the house until almost 4 am, Talia and her son long gone by the time we make it back.
Her scent lingers throughout the house, Grayson whining like crazy, spare room where I find Agnes wide awake, waiting for me.
“How was it?” She signs excitedly.
“Did you get the job?”
I nod with fake enthusiasm but she sees right through my forced smile.
“What’s wrong?” She asks, a worried look in her eyes as she pats the bed.
I don’t want Agnes worrying about my mate problems so I just smile and k!ss her forehead.
“Go to sleep,” I sign.
“You shouldn’t be up this late anyways.”
She frowns at me, expecting the truth but I cannot bring myself to tell her that my own mate did not want me either.
I remove my shoes and change into some basketball shorts before returning to the room.
Agnes glares at me as I grab a pillow and blanket from the bed but I simply give her a toothy grin.
She rolls her eyes when she realizes I wouldn’t be telling her anything anytime soon and finally tucks herself into bed.
I curl up on the floor and wait for sleep to take me but my racing thoughts keep me wide awake.
Did no one want me? I wonder, staring into the darkness of the room.
Was I so awful that my own father and mate refused to keep me? I struggle for another hour to keep my eyes closed and by the time 8 am rolls around, I’m still wide awake.
With sleep being out of mind think over what I should do with Talia.
By the time I step out, Niki is already eating some sausage and eggs. She smiles sheepishly and stumbles onto her feet to serve me a plate.
“I hope you like it,” she blushes, turning away quickly and sitting down again.
I thank her and take a seat directly across from her.
We both timidly eat our food in silence, neither one of us knowing what else to say.
“Micah tells me Talia is your mate,” she finally speaks, raising her eyes from her plate.
“She’s a good person,” she smiles, although it doesn’t reach her eyes.
“You’re very lucky. She’ll make a good mate.”
I swallow the bitter taste in my mouth and force a smile.
Grayson whines and whimpers, making it hard for me to enjoy my food so I excuse myself and put my dishes away in the sink.
Anxious about my fate, I decide I need some fresh air to think properly and leave a note for Agnes informing her of my whereabouts.
The woods are luckily within walking distance and I make my way through the small port town to the edge of the forest.
It is broad daylight but Grayson needed a run so I stuff my clothes into a tree and shift, letting him take control for a little while.
He runs in circles, releasing his pent up frustration as he races through the trees.
After an hour of pointless running, however, he clothes.I think I have an idea, Grayson huffs as he gives me control again.
But it’s a bit risky.
I listen as I dress when a small gust of wind carries the scent of rain and lilac to my nose.
She’s here! Panicking, I hurry into my clothes and hide in the bushes, my heart nearing leaping out of my chest.
A small voice squeals in excitement as another voice loudly counts down from 20.
Suddenly, a small boy crawls into the same bush as me, his eyes widening in awe.
I stare at him, completely mesmerized by the pools of blue and brown staring back at me.I have never seen eyes like his before.
He places his finger to his l!ps and shushes me loudly.
“You have to be quiet or else mommy will find us,” he hisses, curling up in my lap and peering out of the bush.
“Ready or not, here I come,” Talia calls out, her voice a short distance away.
“Come out, come out, wherever you are, Dakota! I’m gonna getcha!”
The boy, whom I presume is Dakota, giggles silently, covering his mouth and mine with his small hands as Talia walks by us, completely oblivious that her son and her mate were hiding in the bushes just behind her.
“Kota…” She sings.
“I’m going to find you!” she cries, pouncing into an empty bush.
I’m on the verge of having a heart attack knowing if she found me with her son, she would have no problem killing me.
Talia wanders several meters away, laughing as she searches through different bushes and trees.
When she’s a safe distance away, the little boy turns to look at me with a toothy grin.
“I’m Kota,” he giggles, climbing off of my lap.
“What’s your name, mister?”