Chapter 4- Disillusioned
My mouth hung open as I watched him order Matthew out of the room. I struggled to sit up in the plush bed but I somehow managed, although not as gracefully as I’d liked.
“What is your problem?” I growled.
“He was looking at you in a way I didn’t like,” he answered honestly.
“So?” I asked. “You can’t go around demanding the world not to look at me.”
He narrowed his eyes. “I can try.”
“Was my room not to your liking?”
“It was beautiful, but I’m not going to be staying in your room.”
He tilted his head to one side. “Why?”
It was like speaking to a child who always got what he wanted. He had no limits or personal boundaries. “Because I don’t know you and I’d like my privacy.”
His shoulders tensed as he stuffed his fists into the pockets of his tight blue jeans. He strolled over to my bed like he owned the place. Well technically he did but it was my room now.
Leaning against the foot of the bed he watched me nervously play with the end of my shirt. Being around him was giving my body jolts of adrenaline that would only be calmed by his touch but I wasn’t having any of that.
“What?” I asked unsure of what to do now.
“Did you not want to find me?” he asked.
The hard set of his brows and the firm line of his lips said one thing, that he didn’t care what my answer would be but the softness in his voice told me something else entirely.
He cared very much.
I answered in a similar tone. “I honestly didn’t think I’d ever be Goddess blessed with a mate. I sort of became disillusioned by it all. I thought the Goddess had abandoned us, abandoned me.”
His bright blue eyes watched me carefully but instead of continuing with our discussion he cleared his throat and changed the subject. “Your pack has arrived and are being settled in as we speak.”
“Thank you, Alpha Sebastian,” I answered.
“Just call me Sebastian.”
I gave a small smile and nodded. “Sebastian.”
I took the small kindness and pushed for information. “That man that came for you, he said the rogues had returned. What happened?”
His brows furrowed. I could tell he debated on how much to tell me. “Briefly. They’re testing our borders and our reaction times, I think.”
“Has this happened before?”
“A couple of times over the last few weeks but never more than once in a day.”
“Why do you think they’ve done so now?”
“I can’t be sure, maybe the summit. This might only be the first of more intrusions or worse.”
“Then why continue with the festivities?” I asked.
“We have an obligation to our kind to do this. I won’t let some rogues derail what we are doing.”
His cobalt eyes burned with conviction.
“Why not accept help from the other Alpha’s that have offered it?”
His jaw hardened. “Because my pack doesn’t need it.”
I rolled my eyes. His ego would be his packs downfall and it was up to me to make him see it, but not right now. That time would come. I was sure of it.
He was done answering that line of questions so I chose another. Hoping that he was still in a talkative mood. I scooched back until my back hit the headboard of the bed.
He watched on amusedly.
“When will I get to meet your pack?”
“Soon,” he answered simply.
“Can you tell me what’s expected of me as the Luna?”
He raised a brow. “Well, you’d be my Luna. Obligated to be my sex slave,” he said seriously.
I gasped. My mouth fell open once again.
His face was hard with the truth of what he just revealed.
He snickered. The snickers turned into full out laughter. His laughter deepening his laugh lines. “I can’t believe you believed that. You should have seen your face.”
I narrowed my eyes at him and threw a pillow at his face, which he caught easily.
“I’m serious,” I laughed. “What does it mean to be the Luna of The Royal Pack?”
His laughter finally died down and he became serious again. “You’d be my right, my second, the hand that keeps me steady, the heart of our pack, and a leader that they’d look to.”
I soaked in his words. The role of Luna was intimidating. I could only hope to fill the shoes that they’d need, that he’d need.
“And the role as your mate?” I whispered.
He inhaled sharply, eyes glued to my face. “That would be up to you, Lyla.”
The sound of my name from his lips sent shivers down my spine. Warmth radiated from my core. The small twitch of his nose let me know he missed nothing.
A knock at the door interrupted the moment. “Come in,” he answered gruffly.
Matthew edged into the room slowly, eyes cast downwards.
“Yes?” he asked, still watching me.
“Her Alpha has requested her presence in the common room of their wing.”
“Very well. I will take her there myself. Thank you, Matthew.”
Matthew left without looking at me.
“Why didn’t he just mind-link me to let me know?” I asked the question aloud although it was more for myself.
He answered anyway. “It’s improper to mind-link if mates are being indoctrinated into another pack. Especially if the wolf in question is the Luna of all Lunas. You do realize that you’re above their ranks now?”
My eyes widened. Beta Alexander would just love that.
“Yeah, it’ll take some time to get used to,” he smiled. “Ready?”
“I guess so.”
He held his hand out for me to hold but I wasn’t ready for more physical contact with him. Although, I was sure my body wanted it.
I jumped off the bed and side stepped around his offered hand. He let his hand fall to his side.
“I can’t convince you to stay in my room, can I?” he asked again.
“Definitely not,” I said confidently.
I shuffled into the hall and waited for him to take the lead. We went down a floor where the guest rooms were held. He took me down a hall to the left of the stairs we’d just descended. Six rooms in he pulled open a gold door and motioned for me to enter.
It was late. The night poured in from the windows with only small slivers of moonlight shining through. The room was illuminated by low lighting. Four of the older pack members, Alpha Hugo, and Beta Alexander were the only ones in attendance. Teresa, Caspian, and the younger wolves were nowhere in sight. They were probably still enjoying the moon party back in the field.
Sebastian followed behind me, radiating every bit of dominance he held. He was gorgeous in all his glory.
Alpha Hugo finally spoke up, interrupting my perusal of Sebastian’s body. “The Goddess has blessed you will your mate, Lyla. We are beyond happy for you. Luna Magda sends along her congratulations.”
“Thank you, Alpha Hugo.”
Why had he summoned me? Was it merely to wish me congratulations or was he hoping for a chance meeting with Sebastian?
“I was hoping to discuss our new alliance,” Alpha Hugo said to Sebastian.
Well, there was my answer. It was assumed that there would be an alliance of packs with whoever was Sebastian’s mate and I hoped there would be. I loved my pack.
Alpha Hugo and Sebastian moved towards the edge of the room to discuss specifics. Beta Alexander remained in his spot by the window. The four older pack members surrounded me offering their congratulations.
I gave them the only response I could think of. “May the goddess bless you with your mates soon.”
They were all over the age of forty. Nearly twenty years without a mate. I couldn’t imagine what that would’ve felt like. I always said I didn’t care if I ever found mine, but now that I had, I couldn’t imagine life without him in it. I still couldn’t fathom how I could feel like this about a stranger, but the surety of it was ingrained into me.
Beta Alexander only offered me a nod. I may no longer be with his son, but he still didn’t like me. Sebastian returned to my side. He placed a hand at the small of my back. All my attention zoomed onto the spot that he now touched; where his hand currently ran soothing circles with its thumb.
I stared up at him and he gazed back, knowing full well what he was doing. I wasn’t about to slap his hand away in public and disrespect him.
The door of the sitting room burst open. Several other pack members came in chatting happily but quickly stopped upon seeing Sebastian.
Teresa was next to follow, muttering the start of a well-known excuse. “I’m sorry I’m late. I’m here now. I had trouble saying goodbye to my...”
Her voice faded away as her mouth fell open upon seeing my mate.
“Sebastian,” she said awed.
The awe and straight raw appreciation of the man next to me was a bit too much. A low growl radiated from my chest.
Had I just growled at my best friend?
Her head snapped in my direction. Her eyes first took in Sebastian’s and my proximity, then the satisfied smirk on his face, and finally to his hand at my back.
Her mouth formed a small O. She quickly regained her composure and gave a respectful nod towards Sebastian.
Teresa’s eyes were drilling holes in the side of my head. I shook my head. I would give her answers later.
The door behind her opened and closed softly. Caspian stood behind Teresa eyes wide as he took in our group.
It was Sebastian’s turn to growl, although his was louder and much more threatening. Beta Alexander pushed off the wall to stand next to his son.
I laid a hand on Sebastian’s arm. The touch pulled his attention towards me. The hard lines of his scowl softened upon seeing my face. He hesitated before nodding, knowing exactly what I wanted at that moment.
He left the room without goodbyes to anyone. A sigh of relief eased the tension in my chest. The room exhaled as one. Beta Alexander’s stink eye was as harsh as always. He walked away, leaving Caspian and me alone.
Caspian and I moved towards the edge of the long rectangular room.
“So, you’ve found your mate?” he asked, already knowing the answer.
“Yeah, and so did you.”
The pain in his amber eyes was hard to miss.
“Well, I thought I had. I thought I’d heard her howl. I was sure I felt the pull of the call but when I gave chase I didn’t find her. Instead, I found you and him in the woods.”
What did that mean? How could he feel the pull but not find his mate?
I continued, “Are you sure she wasn’t out there?”
“Positive. I would have kept looking but Alpha Hugo ordered our return here. I don’t know what to do, Lala,” he said calling me by my childhood nickname.
“I’m sure there’s an explanation,” I said trying to reassure him.
“Thanks,” he choked.
I pulled him into a hug, only able to do so because Sebastian was no longer in the room. Everyone’s eyes were on us, I was sure of it, but I didn’t care. All that mattered was that my friend was in pain.
“I’ll help you find her,” I promised.
He nuzzled his face into my neck and whispered, “Thank you, Lala.”
Teresa quietly followed me back to my room. I could feel the intensity of her gaze on my neck but I wouldn’t go into anything with her in the hall. Who knew what ears were listening. The rooms had the luxury of being soundproof. We could talk when we reached my room.
I opened the door and she followed me in, slamming the door shut. She whirled around to face me, eyes alight with curiosity.
“You bish, you went and got yourself an Alpha and it had to be Sebastian,” she swooned.
She sighed dramatically while flopping onto the bed. “Give me all the deets. He’s so hot,” she crooned.
I groaned. I tried not to let it bother me that she was drooling over my mate. I knew she had hopes of him being hers so I was trying to be level-headed.
She squealed for the fifth time as she rolled around my bed, excited for me. “I can’t believe it! You’re one lucky woman,” she said. “That face though,” she added dreamily.
“Enough,” I growled.
She exploded in a fit of laughter. “You’re so possessive! This is going to be so much fun,” she cackled.
I groaned and pinched the space just above the bridge of my nose. “What about you? The last I saw, you were running into the woods chasing your mate.”
She stopped laughing and suddenly became a pool of mush. “His name is Reed,” she replied breathlessly.
Before I could ask anything else, a knock at the door interrupted us.
I went to answer it knowing it was Sebastian. I knew he’d show up eventually after leaving me with Caspian.
“Hey,” he said, eyes boring into to mine.
“I’ll see you tomorrow, Lyla,” Teresa said as she moved towards us.
I opened the door, allowing Sebastian to come in. He faced away from us, giving us a bit of privacy. Teresa took advantage and humped the doorway, telling me exactly what she thought I should do with the man in my room.
I slapped her body away from the door frame while she laughed and shut the door firmly behind her. I turned to face my mate. He held his arms open for me, asking for a hug instead of taking whatever he wanted.
I smiled and walked into them.
“This connection between us is going to take some getting used to,” he stated.
“Definitely, but I’m certainly willing to try.”
“Good. Me too,” he said firmly.
He buried his face in my neck, breathing me in. I shut my eyes and allowed myself to enjoy the feel of his arm around me but the hug was over as quickly as it began.
He pulled away slightly and snarled at the ground. “His scent is all over you again.”
Oh yeah, I’d forgotten about hugging Caspian.
“About that, I actually need your help,” I said, a plan already forming in the back of my mind. It wasn’t a perfect one but it might bring us closer to solving the mystery around Caspian mate and hopefully soothe the jealousy brewing in mine.