Chapter 11 - Liam
“I’m sorry I was unable to speak with you further at the gala, Alpha Gundulf, but I’m sure as you heard, I ran into some complications.” Liam was annoyed to have been taken away from Eden in what he thought to be one of the most clarifying moments they’d had since she had arrived at the house. She was finally opening up to him, but it had been disrupted by the unexpected visit of an Alpha from a neighbouring pack.
At the unity ball that Beatrice had planned, Liam was supposed to meet with Johnathan Gundulf to speak about a treaty to bring their packs together. Both packs were running low on numbers as the amount of capable lycan was dwindling in the past years. Of course, Liam would take over as the lead Alpha, and Johnathan agreed to be the second in command since he was not born an Alpha as Liam was, but appointed instead. However, before they could talk, Liam ran into Eden.
“Ahh yes, I heard about your half-breedmate.” The word half-breed rolled off Johnathan’s tongue as though it was poisonous. “That happens to be the reason I’m here, Alpha Greywolf. My pack and I are uncertain of your strength as an Alpha with such a feeble Luna on your arm.” Johnathan turned to where his Beta stood behind him, arms behind his back and his face pulled into a tight smile. He then turned back to Liam with a demeaning grin on his face. The shaggy haired Alpha tapped his fingers on the table, staring directly into Liam’s eyes with a raised brow.
“I am unsure of what you’re trying to imply, Gundulf.” Liam could feel his lip begin to pull into a sneer as his fists clenched atop his oak desk. How dare he come here and question Liam about his mate?
“We have come to the conclusion that I should be appointed Alpha if we decide to unite our packs. It seems just as well since my Luna is fully lycan, providing a proper heir for the future of our people. Although your numbers are stronger than mine, I’m sure many of your members will agree. I hear that they’ve been questioning your leadership as well.” Johnathan sat back in his chair, crossing his legs and beginning to examine his nails. He wore a devilish smile that made the blood in Liam’s body boil. Before he could get a handle on himself, he sprung up from his seat and leaned forward onto his desk, enraged.
“How dare you come into my home, onto my lands, uninvited and insult me and my Luna.” Liam spat in the face of his rival Alpha. He could feel his canines elongate as he struggled to remain in his human form. Claws began to form in his fisted hands, piercing into his skin, but he was too angry to care. Eden was his mate, and if anybody dared to cross or question her, they had him to answer to. “Fuck you and fuck your treaty Johnathan. My pack doesn’t need you, you need us. As far as I’m concerned, you’re never to step foot on my lands again or it’ll be the last of you. Stay away from my people and my Luna.” Liam hadn’t noticed he had crossed around his desk, pointing his finger in the smaller Alpha’s face.
“Oh, the feral Alpha Greywolf. It seems your mate hasn’t done the trick for you yet, huh?” Johnathan looked Liam up and down, taking in his twitching skin, his near inability to keep a cap on the wolf that roared for release beneath him. “I’m sure the Royals would love to hear that one of the few purebred Alpha’s left on this side of the earth has a mutt for a mate, not to mention a death threat to a fellow Alpha? You know how they love to get involved.” Even though Liam had Johnathan cornered, his dark eyes glared into him, threatening Liam with everything he had.
“Get out. Now. Before I tear your fucking head off.” Liam’s growl seemed to shake the entire office, members of Liam’s and Johnathan’s pack quivered at the pure rage of the mighty Alpha.
“Watch your next step, Greywolf, it could be your last.” Johnathan hissed, pushing his way past Liam and out the office door. Liam didn’t move from where he stood with his hands balled up and his teeth gritted together. He felt as though his blood was a billion degrees and growing higher.
“Follow them, make sure they leave immediately and don’t linger.” Liam spoke through his teeth to his half-brother, Stephen, who also happened to be his Beta. Though he wasn’t particularly happy with his brothers’ actions at the moment, he was still one of the few people he trusted.
“Yes, Alpha.” Stephen obliged, exiting the room with great haste.
Liam couldn’t believe the audacity of Johnathan, his once good friend, threatening him? Threatening Eden? He knew the Royals wouldn’t be happy about his mate being only half lycan, but he planned on speaking with them himself once Eden knew more about their kind, once she understood them more. But if Johnathan got to them first? Well it could possibly be the end of Eden, of Liam and his pack. He would be exiled, he would become a rogue. Liam’s head fell into his hands as he shouted, furious. Before he could comprehend what happened, his fist was through one of his wood-plated office walls, his bookshelves thrown to the floor, the oak desk which was bolted into the ground (for a good reason) was flipped onto its side, it’s belongings splayed across the room. Liam was blind with rage at the thought of anybody so much as laying a finger on his mate.
Finally gathering himself a little, Liam’s skin began to prickle, but in a different way. Eden. Liam could feel her distress as though it was his own. She was upset. The first thought to cross Liam’s mind was Johnathan, and once more his anger soared. He needed to find her. Now. Liam ripped his office door open so hard it came off the hinges, but he was moving too fast to care, following his senses to find his mate. She was no longer in the library, but in a separate wing of the house all together. Liam’s anger grew into confusion, Eden didn’t wander due to her tendency to get lost, and Gundulf’s scent was long gone from the house. What could she be doing over here?
He followed her sweet scent to the door of one of the spare rooms in the east-wing of the house, furrowing his brows together. Nobody was staying in the house right now, so what would bring her all the way over here. Before opening the door, he pressed his ear to it, just making out the muffled voices behind it.
“Don’t cry Eden, I’m sure Liam will have an explanation.” He recognized the voice, it was a soft female one. Before he could knock, the door swung open, causing him to stumble into the room. He looked up to see Eden’s emerald eyes, now red and bloodshot from crying. Her face was blotchy, and she held a pile of tissues in her lap. “Well, well, well, speak of the devil and he shall appear.”
“Daria?” Liam’s eyes snapped away from Eden’s to meet the green gaze of his younger sister. She was glowering up at him, her lips pulled into a scowl of obvious disapproval. His sister didn’t tell him she was coming to visit, she’s been off travelling and teaching lycan around the world for the past year, and now all of a sudden, she was back? However, his sister was the least of his worries at the moment. He made way toward his sobbing mate, who seemed to grow more upset at the sight of him.
“Whoa, not so fast mister.” His sister grabbed him by his arm and yanked him back.
“Let me go, now.” Liam ripped his arm from his sister’s fierce grip, she was strong, but not stronger than him. He started toward his trembling mate once more, but once again Daria leapt in front of him.
“Back off, you have some explaining to do before you go anywhere near her.” Daria growled in her brother’s face. Liam looked from his sister to Eden, who was now curled into a ball on a chaise at the foot of the rooms king-size bed.
“What on earth are you talking about?” Liam’s face crumpled with confusion.
“S-S-Selena,” Eden’s voice was gravely and muffled from her crying. Liam felt his heart sink in his chest. Selena was a pack member that Liam had a small history with. They would occasionally hook up when they were in heat, but it was nothing more, though Selena always acted otherwise.
“Get that bitch under control Liam, or so help me I’ll-” Daria began, but Liam was quick to cut her off, only interested in what his mate had to say.
“What did she do, Eden?” Liam walked toward the chaise, wanted to console his hurting mate. He could feel her sadness, her hurt, her anger. He wanted to wrap his arms around her, to cover her with his kisses until her feelings of heartache melted away.
“Stay there, please.” Eden held a hand out to stop him from coming any closer to her. He stopped in his tracks, just barely an arm’s reach from her. He knelt to the ground, taking in her tangled mess of hair that was now pulled back into a low bun, however stray hairs stuck to her tear-stained face. Her eyes were not meeting Liam’s, but instead were focused on her hands where she pulled at the rips in her jeans.
“Tell me what happened Angel,” Liam cooed, placing his hand on the chaise. Even though he wasn’t touching her, he could feel the ever so familiar spark that radiated from her skin to his. Daria was just a few steps behind him, watching wearily as Liam interacted with his mate.
“I was in the library,” she sniffled. “And Selena came in, but I was behind a shelf, and she didn’t see me.” She used the palms of her hands to wipe the tears falling from her eyes. Liam wished he could wipe them away for her. “S-she said that you were trying to find a way not to be with me, so you could be with her. That I was a m-m-m…” She broke off into soft sobs, followed by hiccups. Liam knew this wasn’t the time to be endeared by his mate, but she was so cute when she cried.
“She called her a mutt.” Daria finished the sentence for Eden. Liam didn’t have to turn around to see the distaste on his sister’s face, because he knew he wore the same look. Selena was never the nicest person around, but Liam was only ever with her because she threw herself at him. She was easy. But she wasn’t someone Liam wanted to have for a mate. He felt his jaw clench as he shook his head.
“Could you excuse us, Daria?” Liam said with a low, commanding voice.
“If you hurt her I’ll-” He cut his sister off once more.
“You’ll do what?” He hissed.
“I’ll kick your fucking ass.” She snapped back before leaving the room. Liam and Eden fell into heavy silence that could be sliced with a knife, not making eye contact. Liam scooted closer to his mate, sitting on the floor right in front of her. He reached for one of her hands, but she pulled it away.
“Was she your girlfriend?” Eden whispered. Liam chewed his lip for a second before he spoke, thinking over his words.
“No, she wasn’t my girlfriend.” He sighed. “Selena and I have some history, but it was never anything serious, although she wanted it to be.” Eden looked from where Liam sat on the ground, then out the window across from her, still plucking at her jeans.
“She said that you were ashamed of me.”
“Fuck everything you heard her say, Eden. Selena thinks what she wants to think, she doesn’t know anything. I want to be with you Eden. Not her. I’d never be ashamed of you. You’re beautiful, stubborn, smart, and you’re so kind. You’re everything she isn’t. You’re the Luna this pack may not want at the moment, but the one it needs. You’re the one I need.” Liam grabbed Eden’s hand gently, placing on his sternum right above his heart. “This is yours Eden, it beats for you now. Only for you. Nobody can take that from you.”
Liam watched as Eden’s face broke down into tears once more, but this time, she smiled through her them. She placed her other hand on Liam’s chest, feeling his heart pound through his thin grey shirt. Liam could feel his eyes well up, but he didn’t allow his tears to spill over. He reached up to the chaise, pulling Eden from it and into his lap so her legs were on either side of his, and she wrapped her arms up around his neck as he leaned his forehead against hers. His body sparked to life at her touch, and he could feel her heartbeat in her chest against his. Beating for him.
“Liam?” She asked, breathless and sniffling softly.
“May I kiss you?” He didn’t bother answering before he crushed his lips to hers, pulling her as close to him as he possibly could. The kiss was soft, but it made Liam feel as though his body was on fire nonetheless. His skin began to prickle, and as he skimmed his hands up Eden’s arms, where he could feel her goosebumps. Her hands traveled up his neck, her fingertips in his hairline as she pulled him further into their kiss. Liam could feel Eden’s hunger for him intensify with every movement, and he felt himself let out a low growl against her lips. He expected her to pull away, but instead she pushed her hips against him, bucking them softly, however it was enough to send Liam into overdrive. His pants began to grow tight, and he knew if didn’t stop now, he might not stop at all.
He pulled away from the kiss, resting his forehead against hers once more. They both breathed heavily, eyes still shut as they took in the moment they had shared. Eden’s fingers danced softly through Liam’s hair, down his shoulders, his arms. He opened his eyes, taking in her flushed cheeks and her soft, wet lips.
Yes. Liam thought to himself. She’s the one I need.