“Ash wake up. We get to go home today.” I gently shook him, trying my hardest to wake him up but he slept like a rock.
It had been a couple weeks since the battle and Asher was finally strong enough to go home.
“I’m up, I’m up.” He mumbled after a couple more minutes of me constantly bugging him.
“C’mon, up and out of bed sleepyhead. You need to get ready so we can leave.” I ordered like a drill Sargent, clapping my hands for extra motivation.
He sluggishly got up and walked into the bathroom to get ready.
I was ecstatic to go back home, but a part of me was also terrified.
I'd get to see the pack, which was more of a family to me than anyone else had ever been, but I would also be back in the town that Jason and Madison were in. What if they tried to hurt me again?
I tried to distract myself from that unsettling thought but focusing on how hungry I was. Maybe on the way home we could pick up some snacks, I was craving pickles and ice cream for some reason. Not mixed together of course, but I didn't particularly like pickles so I had no idea why I wanted one so bad.
Ash finally emerged from the bathroom and I leaped up from the bed and jumped into his arms. I really missed him even though he was only in the bathroom for maybe ten minutes. It was probably just the mate bond and the shock of almost losing him not long ago.
“Someone’s happy to see me.” He teased, giving me a quick kiss on the nose.
“What, your mate can’t be happy to see you?” I playfully pouted.
“You have a point.” He said, easily picking me up bridal style and carrying me all the way to the car Jay, Ava, Ash and I were all taking to get home.
No more walking for us.
When we were all in the car I asked if we could stop at a grocery store to get some snacks and they all thought it was a great idea.
At the store we all went separate ways to get our food and then met back up at the car when we were finished.
Everyone looked at me like I was crazy when they saw my snacks and for some reason that really bothered me. Why were they judging me for the food I got? It was none of their business.
“What?” I snapped at them as we got in the car.
“Are you feeling alright?” Jay asked cautiously.
“Better than ever.” I snapped again. I didn't know why I was so angry but I couldn't control it.
After that an awkward silence fell over us. Jay and Ava were quiet in the front seats, careful not to anger me further, and Asher put a comforting hand on my thigh.
After a while of cooling down from my outburst I felt bad for making the atmosphere so tense. I didn't have a reason so snap at them like that, they did absolutely nothing wrong, I was just stressed to go back home and took it out on them.
"I'm sorry for snapping at you all, I shouldn't have done that." I finally broke the thick silence.
All three of them took their turn telling me they forgave me, and just like that everything was back to normal. Jay turned on the radio and we all chatted and sang along to the songs we knew while I continued to snack on my ice cream and pickles.
The car ride was going pretty well until a couple hours later when we were about halfway home. I was beginning to regret to choice of snack because my stomach was killing me, and I had a history of getting carsick so that didn't help the situation.
“Pull over.” I urgently told Jay, putting a hand over my mouth a second later.
Asher looked over at me in alarm but I ignored him. I had to get out of the car.
Jay quickly pulled over and I hopped out of the car before it was completely stopped and ran behind some trees just in time.
I doubled over and violently vomited until there was nothing left in my stomach. I didn’t even notice Asher holding my hair back until I was finished.
I cautiously straightened up from my hunched over position and started back to the car when I didn't feel nauseous anymore.
"Are you okay?" Asher asked as we got to the car, worry written all over his face.
I shrugged, “I’m fine. My snacks just didn't mix well and sometimes I get car sick."
He nodded but stayed silent, the worry never leaving his face. He'd been quiet the whole drive and barely said anything to me.
“Are you alright?” I asked once we were settled in the car and driving again.
“I'm just worried. You haven't been yourself all day. Is there something you're not telling me?” He replied, his eyes pleading with me to let him in.
“I’m just anxious to go home.” I told him, which wasn’t a lie, the more I thought about it, the more terrified I got.
“You’re worried about Jason and Madison.” He voice my concern.
I nodded, "They kidnapped me once, what's stopping them from trying to hurt me again?"
“I won’t let them hurt you again.” He assured me, grabbing my hand and giving it a comforting squeeze.
I just shrugged and faced the window, not wanting to talk about it anymore.
During the rest of the drive we had to pull over three more times because I had to throw up. I thought there was nothing left in my stomach but I was very wrong.
By the time we got home I was exhausted and Asher had to carry me inside. I could feel worry coming off of him in waves but I was preoccupied by how sick I felt.
But having him with me made it a bit more bearable. He got whatever I needed, and other than that never left my side. I was so lucky to have him.
As I rested in bed for the night Asher and I tried to figure out why I was so sick, and ended up assuming it was just a stomach bug.
Hopefully I'd feel much better in the morning.
I was freaking out. Liza had been sick for three days now and she wasn't getting better. No one knew what was wrong with her.
The best guess we had was that she used so much power and energy during the battle that it made her sick. But I didn't think that was the problem. She would have been sick a lot sooner if it was from all the energy she used.
If she had have gotten sick after we arrived back home I would've assumed that Jason poisoned her, but that wasn't a possibility since she got sick on the way back.
Maybe someone did poison her, but who? Who would try to hurt my innocent little mate? She didn't do anything to deserve it.
None of this made sense.
And the worst part was that I couldn't do anything to help. My wolf and I felt so helpless, something was hurting our mate and we couldn't stop it.
It was killing me to see her suffer.
“Your father wants to see you in his study.” Becca informed me from the entrance of Liza's room.
I didn’t even notice she came in.
“Tell him I can’t. I’m busy.” I told her through clenched teeth. I was not leaving Liza's side.
“Ash, I’ll take care of her while you talk to your dad. You can trust me. I love her like a sister, I would never do anything to hurt her.” Becca said softly.
She was really devastated when she found out Liza was sick. I knew I could trust her but I really didn’t want to leave my mates side. What if something happened while I was gone?
I pushed the thought away and got up off the floor beside the bed, trying to convince myself that Liza would be okay while I was gone.
I gave her one final look before rushing to my father's office, not bothering to knock before walking in.
“What do you want?” I snapped.
“Son, I know Liza is sick but I need your help with some pack business. One of our neighbouring packs just got attacked by a pack of rogue wolves and they need a place to stay until they can rebuild their pack house.” He replied, choosing to ignore my attitude.
“I don’t care, you can take care of that on your own. I need to take care of my mate.” I replied, turning on my heels to leave before he had a chance to say anything else.
“Are you sure that’s what's wrong?” Becca whispered to Liza.
I stopped dead in my tracks, Liza knew what was wrong and she didn’t tell me?
“I’m not sure. But it’s a possibility.” My little mate whispered back in a broken voice, I could tell she'd been crying.
I couldn’t stand being away from her any longer so I walked into the room before anything else was said.
“So you know what’s wrong with you?” I accused Liza, my voice more cold than I meant for it to be. I had just been so worried and she knew what was wrong and did nothing to help herself. Why would she do that?
The colour drained from her face, “N-no, it was for a show Becca and I watch. One of the characters thought her boyfriend was cheating on her.”
I wasn’t convinced but I didn’t push her to tell me the truth. I knew from past experiences that I couldn't make her do anything. I just had to show her that she could trust me.
“So I’ll see you later, and I’ll bring it.” Becca cryptically told Liza before leaving.
I looked down at my little mate and was surprised to see that she wasn’t sickly thin like she should've been since she couldn't keep anything she ate down.
I studied her body closer and noticed her stomach was a little swollen. Maybe she was sicker than we thought.
Whatever was causing this could be slowly killing her and we had no idea how to stop it. But if she knew what was going on, why wasn't she getting help?
Pack doctors did every test they could think of but couldn't find anything wrong. But they hadn't done an ultrasound. Maybe they'd find some answers if they got to see inside Liza's stomach, since that was what caused her the most problems.
I looked back down at Liza and she was sleeping so I quietly snuck out of the room and went down to the hospital part of the house.
Nurse Lindsay was on duty at the time so I told her my idea and she agreed that it was worth a shot. All I had to do was bring Liza down so the nurse could do the test.
I quickly made my way back upstairs to pick up Liza, who was still sound asleep, and carefully brought her down to the room nurse Lindsay would preform the ultrasound in.
I didn’t have the heart to wake her up so I gently placed her on the hospital bed and nervously waited for the test.
The nurse also decided to let Liza sleep since she was so weak from constantly being sick, and proceeded to squirt some gel onto my mate's stomach, and then slid a weird handheld device around the gel while she looked at a monitor.
“Oh my.” Nurse Lindsay said after a minute, sounding very surprised.
“What?” I asked. I was so nervous that my hands were shaking.
“Congratulations. You’re going to be a father Asher.”