Chapter 27 - Uneasy
Glen stalked behind Mantilo all the way to the bottom floor of their home.
A soft warmth crawled all along her arms, and brushed her spine, a feminine hiss curled down her throat. She ignored her sons as they trailed behind both her and Mantilo, no doubt they were waiting to see what was about to transpire.
Mantilo stomped down the steps in front of her, a faint heat and the scent of his inner beast tickled her senses. Pulling up many different responses from her. The strongest of them being pleasure. Even in the midst’s of rage...the female Shifter and the woman in her couldn’t help but be excited at the familiar tingle of their mate floating into her lungs. It was a tingle that Glen always felt when she caught Mantilo’s scent or simply saw him walking around or standing beside her.
She was truly crazy about her mate. She treasured her husband. And Glen knew that there was no one else for her or anyone else that she would be able to walk beside, except for him.
Every never ending in her body was his to destroy.....and vice versa.
But maybe that was why she currently wanted to strangle him to death?
Another hiss crawled up her throat as Mantilo stepped off the bottom landing and headed for the door pretending not to hear her displeasure.
So Glen slammed her foot into the ground as she stopped on the last stair step and openly snarled at him.
Suddenly Mantilo turned and roared back at her.
“What in gods name is wrong with you woman!” he snarled, his irises slit like the cat hidden inside of him. “Why are you hissing up a storm?”
“You!” Glen growled pointing at him. “You are unbelievable Mantilo! Did you hear yourself back there, acting like a mindless beast? You almost Shifted, just so you could scare the stranger half to death!!”
Mantilo hissed at her. “How I choose to deal with that intruder is none of your concern.”
“What in God’s name is wrong with you?” Glen snapped back at him. “You threatened him! You threatened to kill him! Hes a boy!”
“Damn right I did! And I meant it! He’s a threat to us.” Mantilo growled down at her. He out stood her by a good five or six feet, even though she had the step she was standing on to make her stand taller. But as he used his size to dominate her he only made Glen angrier.
Glen rolled her eyes. Sometimes the men in her life boggled her mind. “Mantilo you said so yourself....He is just a mortal boy and one that is possibly no older then Ezekiel. He’s practically two days form death and not to mention half your size and barely half you age....and you feel challenged by him!!?”
Mantilos right hand balled into a meaty fist that he slammed into his leg. “I want that....little bastard out of my house!”
“You don’t know anything about him! You can’t just get rid of someone because you don’t like their attitude. He can’t be moved anytime soon!” Glen rebuffed feeling horrified.
“I can...and I will.” Mantilo snarled, brushing aside her objections and Glen was both surprised and alerted by his tone. He sounded so cold and heartless to her just then....but in all the years of their Mating and marriage she had never associated coldness or heartlessness with him.
“What are you doing Mantilo? This isn’t like you!” Glen growled, feeling a sharp tooth cutting into her cheek as her canines began to sharpen.
She took a step back from him and from the anger. Mantilo was not a mindless bully or a fool. She respected his mind and his wisdom...and he respected hers. Yelling at him was only distorting that.... And Glen realized that she had to calm him down or they would just continue to argue in circles.
She took a deep breath, and reached down into her soul. She calmed the Leopard in her, wrapped it in her will, refocused the beast inside, pulled in the heat on her skin, and then she sensed Mantilo’s own energy.
A strong mixture of anger and frustration, but it was driven by an anxious and wound up mind. Now that Glen wasn’t bogged down in her own emotions she could sense the tension in him. His soul...his beast was terribly unbalanced and so was he.
“Mantilo listen to me....” She began, this time with all the calm that she could muster. But Mantilo cut her off.
“Wait! ” Mantilo barked at her. And with a sigh she leaned back on the rail beside her. Mantilo hissed, and leaned to the side so that he could look behind her at their sons. “Leave us alone to talk.” He demanded softly. “You all have work to get done....so go do it.”
All of their sons shifted on the steps behind Glen and hesitantly moved to obey.
Lander softly moved to Glen’s side, and kissed her on the cheek.
“Be safe out there.” She told them as she returned it, then he walked down the rest of the steps, past his father and towards the front door. Nate kissed her as well and hurried to follow him. Walter brushed past his mother and his father and joined his siblings, but before Lander could get the door fully open Mantilo hissed at them. “Walters in charge for right now. I’ll be busy with other things in the Northern Fields. So let Walter assign you your patrols for the afternoon. And if you see Ezekiel tell him that he’ll be sleeping in the garage if he oversteps again.”
Lander and Nate exchanged bemused smiles. But none of their sons made any sounds or objections to his orders, so Mantilo waved them on and they disappeared out of the doorway. A few seconds of silence rained, before Mantilo turned back to her, his entire presence brimming with anger.....and an unwillingness to continue the argument.
“Glen....we aren’t goona keep fighting about this.” He said walking right up to her as she straitened up from the banister.
“Ok....we don’t have to fight. I don’t wanna yell at you anymore. “She said to him, coming down the steps to stand directly in front of him. “But.....your behavior upsets me my heart.” Glen told him softly. “I can sense the storm in your mind about all of this. Tell me what is wrong?”
Glen watched him as he sighed and rubbed the back of his neck, the action was so similar to Ezekiel’s movements that she would have smiled at it any other time. “Must there be something wrong with me? Is it not enough that I want the mortal gone because I don’t like him?” Mantilo grumped at her.
“No, there is something wrong. In your heart. I can tell.” Glen said to him softly. She reached out and touched his chest with the palm of her right hand. “We both share this heart...so of course I can tell. Talk to me.”
Mantilo paused, looked away. Then he said “I fell this heaviness on my stomach. There is something strange on the wind ever since the mortal showed up. Something whispering to me that he shouldn’t have come here.” He explained to her.
Mantilo...and all the people in her Clan believed in ill omens and trusted their instincts to guide them in times of crisis. In the past a feeling or change in the air signaled danger. A superstition that had guided her people soundly away from many disasters and it was something that many Clan Chiefs in the past, like Mantilo, felt compelled to heed. So when something felt bad they listened to that feeling above all else.
Glen tried to laugh away his somber tone.
“Mantilo.....everything outside of this village is not trying to kill us...or hurt us. ” She pointed out to him with a soft smile. But Mantilo just glared at her. “I am not afraid of him woman. I simply want him gone.”
Glen shook her head at him. “But why? Because he was rude to you!?”
Mantilo scoffed. “No....his smart little mouth didn’t wound me or my pride.” He said, then he stopped and seemed to struggle with a thought, before he could voice it. “It’s because I know that there is something about him that isn’t right....and I think....you know it too Glen.” Mantilo hissed at her softly, looking into her eyes. And even though she tried to hide it, she couldn’t keep him from seeing that she understood him. That she had felt what he had felt about the mortal.
“You and I sense it.....and so do the boys. ” Mantilo began. “Lander tells me that he cannot read the mortals emotions, or sense his thoughts. Even when the Mortal was asleep he couldnt break through his walls.” Mantilo said to her softly. “Lander tells me that this mortal has a block stronger then steel around his mind.” Mantilo shook his head. “Now I ask you... Do normal mortals even know of such a thing? They are a shallow people cut off from supernatural powers. Only the strongest or wisest of them even stumble upon it....So why would some young mortal already know how to do it?”
“I don’t know, but....” Glen opened her mouth, ready to argue with him some more. She tried to tell him that there was something important about the mortal that he didn’t understand. Something that she had been hiding. But Mantilo was done talking.
“Glen!” Mantilo barked cutting her off completely. He reached forward and held her face between his hands. He pulled her towards him softly and looked her in the eyes. “Glen just this once...you’ve got to let this go! You’ve sensed it too....I know you have. There is something wrong.”
Glen did sense it. But that was one of the things that she and he often argued about the most. Their guts...or their instincts couldn’t rule their entire lives. Glen believed that they were more than beast...and more than men. Mantilo thought that anything that was foreign or outside of the Clan was dangerous and he had his own reasons for believing that. Things in their combined pasts that would make him deaf to anything else that she said on the mortal’s behalf just then.
But she wanted to try once more because even though Glen had sensed how strange the mortal was....She had seen things that she couldn’t ignore.
Things on the mortal’s body that spoke to her. Things that.....she didn’t want to reveal yet. Things she had no right to reveal.
Glen sighed and put a hand over one of the one he had on her cheeks. “He’s sick Mantilo. You can’t seriously plan to move him. If you’ll just let him stay here a little longer...?”
Mantilo closed and opened his dark eyes slowly as he dropped his hands to her shoulders. “Glen the mortal makes me uneasy. I....I don’t want him here any longer then he has to be.”
“But Mantilo, he needs medical attention....!” Glen began.
“I said no!” Mantilo hissed at her, his eyes flashing dimly for a moment a stark yellow. Glen bit her tongue and looked away feeling defeated...because she knew that he wasn’t budging.
Mantilo sighed, took her hand and placed a kiss to the palm of it, then he put it over his large, chest directly over the clam heavy thump of his heart.” Listen to me. I can’t explain it right now..... but there is something off about him Glen. My gut is telling me that this is something that we need to steer clear of. My Clan and my family come first to me. Your safety is more important to me, then doing the right thing for a stranger. So tomorrow...he’s gone.” Mantilo hissed and looked away from her. “I’m sorry my Heart. I know you wanted to help him...but this is for the best.”
And Glen couldn’t do anything but kiss him goodbye, a kiss that was soft and sweet despite thier tones with each other.
“Stay safe....and try to keep away from the Mortal until I return tonight or one of our sons returns from thier patrol.” He told her, and then his strong back was disappearing out of the door.
Glen sighed. She didn’t know how to persuade him otherwise. Nor did she plan to trample all over his objections....but still she had a niggling thought in her mind that wouldn’t go away. She saw the nameless Mortals wounds in her mind, she felt his guts beneath her fingertips as she pushed them back into his body. She remembered the ache in her hand from all the stitches she had had to apply to make up for the missing skin, the smell of rot and puss in his wounds that she had had to clean out.
And Glen feared that he was still going to die despite her efforts.
Glen guessed that if the mortal had another spontaneous bout of movement anytime soon....his body wouldn’t be able to handle the stress. He was low on blood, fighting infection...and his body... His body was terribly fragile.
The healer in her rebelled at the idea of just letting Mantilo do as he pleased. Whether the mortal was strange or not....Whether he was dangerous or not?
Surely he doesn’t deserve to be left to die...
She told herself.