Chapter Thirty Six
WITH the night spent away until the early hours in the morning in their wolf forms, Lucas immediately fell into a deep sleep as soon as his back hit the bed. He faintly remembered his little Ava climbing underneath his arm and snuggling into his chest before, she too, fell asleep.
As he slowly regained consciousness, he felt eyes boring into his skin. His arm covered his mate's waist while the top of her body leaned on his torso. He could tell she was close to his face from the small puffs of air that hit his skin every time she breathed.
He made sure not to make any sudden movements that would let her know he was awake because he was curious as to what she was going to do. He felt Ava's small fingertip lightly press onto his eyebrow, tracing it before moving onto the other one. He stayed still whilst she ran her finger down the ridge of his nose and booped it, eliciting a giggle out of her.
Lucas suppressed his laughter at his weird mate's actions, subconsciously tightening his grip on her as if she were to disappear any second.
He waited for the perfect moment to surprise her so when she started to trace his lips, he opened his eyes and bit her finger lightly. Ava screamed in shock and wiped her finger on his bare chest, giggling when she saw Lucas' amused smirk.
"What were you doing, baby?" He asked, chuckling as her cheeks turned an adorable shade of red and she buried her face in the crook of his neck to hide from him.
"Nothin'" her voice came out muffled but Lucas could tell she was embarrassed at being caught. It was obvious from the blush that had traveled to her neck.
"Nothing, huh? So you wasn't ogling your mate and touching his lips, invading his personal space as he was unconscious? Huh? Answer me." He teased, tickling her, which made her squirm with laughter.
"Nooo." She denied, nuzzling deeper into his neck and then surprisingly, bit his neck. Although her teeth were hardly sharp and it was like a baby biting a finger, he jumped a little from the shock.
He moved away a bit to look at his mate, who looked at him with her big doe eyes like she was the most innocent being in the world. "Did you just bite me?" Lucas asked with laughter in his eyes.
Ava just nodded and moved to bite his neck again. "I'm marking you." She mumbled into his neck, giggling.
"Mmm. Baby, you know you can't mark me right? When I marked you, it meant I was yours just as much as you were mine." He reminded her, struggling to focus on the sentences as his mate licked his neck.
"Shhh. I'm pretending." She said, just as her heard her stomach rumble loudly. Ava groaned into his neck, hiding into it again. "Now I'm embarrassed again."
He rubbed his hand up and down her back and kissed the back of her head. "Aw. There's no need to be embarrassed in front of me. You know, some couples poop in front of each other."
"Ewwww." Lucas pictured her face scrunching up in the cute way it would always do whenever she was disgusted at something.
"I know. Be thankful we don't do that." He said and then got out of the bed. Although he yearned to stay in bed all day with her, he knew she was starving and who knew how long she was lying there staring at him. "Want to go to the diner for breakfast?" He suggested, already knowing what the answer would be.
She shot out of bed, quickly saying, "yes! Yes! Yes!" Ava pecked him on the lips, before running into the bathroom with the click of the lock following.
Lucas cursed when the soap dropped in the shower and picked it up as water rained on him. Ava was waiting for him downstairs whilst he got ready but his actions were distracted by the thoughts of all that had happened recently.
He had grown up with his tiny, adorable human mate but now... she was a tiny, adorable werewolf mate. He had never imagined what it would be like if she were a werewolf as well because he didn't want her to change. She was perfect the way she was. But now that she has changed, he found his love never faltered and she was still as perfect as ever.
He was happy and Ava was unbelievably happy with her new found abilities. Unfortunately or fortunately, he hadn't decided yet, Ava would go into heat soon and he wasn't sure if she was ready for what they may have to do. Heat will enhance all of her emotions but mostly lust. If Ava was attracted to him, which he was positive she was, she'd feel an urge to mate, causing Lucas to also have the urge to mate.
Either way, he wouldn't force her to do anything she was uncomfortable with. Though many times they have gotten close, having sex and mating would be a huge step for them to take but they'd only take the step if she was ready. If he had to stay by her side doting on her hand and foot and reminding her of every single thing he loved about her whilst she lay in pain from heat, he would do it all without complaint.
A Luna ceremony was long overdue too. He had wanted to announce her as the pack's Luna ever since she accepted him as his mate but he didn't want to overwhelm her. Especially with everything that happened after, it was never the right time. But now, things were finally settling down so a celebration would be a great event to show off his mate.
"Testing. Testing. 1. 2. 3."
He smiled as his Ava's voice was heard in his head. For a second he thought that he was imagining it but quickly realised it was her speaking through the mind link. "Yeah, Baby. I hear ya."
"Are you done yet? My tummy's rumbling. It's saying, 'feed me, Ava! Feed me!'" Ava said through the mind link.
"Yeah yeah. Hold on." He replied, stepping out of the shower and drying himself off with the towel.
"I don't know why guys say that girls take forever to get ready. I'm always the one waiting for you." She complained.
Lucas guessed she rolled her eyes so he scolded, "don't roll your eyes at me."
"How did you know?!" She yelled but then said, "you know what? It doesn't matter. Get dressed. Ava signing out."
"You don't have to say that you're signing out." He said, laughing at her aloud.
It was quiet for a few seconds and Lucas thought she wasn't going to respond because she 'signed out'. But then she just replied with, "bye."
He shook his head and laughed, wondering what he'd do without his mate in his life. Lucas got dressed in a casual outfit, knowing that after they had breakfast they'd most likely stay at home all day.
He reached for his phone and walked out, only having to go back for his wallet and once more for his car keys. Finally, he walked down the stairs but heard his girlfriend speaking to someone and laughing. He was stopped in his place when he heard Edward voice as well.
When their voices stopped, he was standing at the bottom of the stairs and saw the guy stood inches away from her. Lucas watched as Edward reach out to touch Ava's face and put some hair behind her ear, his hand lingering near her face. He's touching what's mine! My Ava's hair. The hair that I have tucked behind that same ear many times as she snuggled into ME!
Edward began to lean in closer and to Lucas' utter surprise and heartbreak, she didn't move away.
"Don't touch her!" He growled, taking forceful strides towards them and knocking him to the ground away from Ava. Just as Edward started to get up, Lucas delivered a powerful punch to his face, making him fall back to the ground whilst groaning in pain.
"Lucas!" He heard Ava yell at him, distress clear in her voice, but he didn't look at her as he roughly grabbed the guy's top.
"DON'T TOUCH MY MATE! SHE'S MINE." Lucas snarled at Edward whilst feeling hands pull at the back of his top.
"Lucas. Let go of him! Please." Hearing the fear in her voice broke him out of whatever trance he was in. Lucas turned around to wrap his arms around Ava and she hugged him back just as tightly. His whole body was shaking with the urge to shift and show the weak wolf who was Alpha. He nuzzled his head her neck, breathing in her mango scent with her soft hair caressing his cheek. He needed to hold his mate - make sure she was there. That she was with him and she wasn't leaving him.
As Ava rubbed her hand soothingly up and down his back, he repeated mumbled, "you're mine. All mine. Not his. Mine. My girlfriend. My mate. Mine to love." He held her close to him, kissing the mark on her neck with his eyes squeezed shut.
"Argh. Geez that hurt." Lucas heard the injured Edward say but he didn't stop from muttering his words, as if he was convincing himself, telling himself they were true and that there wasn't a better person for her. That she belonged to him because he only belonged to her.
"Are you ok?" Ava asked Edward softly, still rubbing her mate's back, which began to slowly relax.
"Yeah, I guess. Hey, man. It was a misunderstanding. I don't know what you think I was doing but it wasn't anything I should be punched for. If anything, I was helping her!" He defended.
"Helping?" He mumbled.
"I was trying to get an eyelash out of her eye. It was hurting her and she was in pain." Edward explained, rubbing his cheek where a bruise started to form.
"Pain?" The Alpha asked, starting to feel a little guilty.
"Yeah! Tell him Ava!"
"It's true. He was only helping." She said in a sad tone.
Lucas felt shameful and embarrassed. He unwillingly parted away from Ava and quietly said, "sorry, baby. Did I scare you?"
She shook her head and stood on her top toes to cup his cheek. "No but I was scared for you. I don't like seeing you so sad and angry. But, I also don't like how you jump to conclusions and immediately throw punches. I don't like how you don't trust me." She said, her voice breaking at the end.
"I-I'm sorry. I do trust you."
"Did you think he was going to kiss me? Did you think I was going to let him?" Hurt laced her voice, causing his heart to constrict. "You don't trust me." Ava pushed him away and ran up the stairs.
Lucas was frozen in his spot for a second, surprised by what had happened but then snapped out of it. He went to run after her when Edward unhelpfully commented, "there's no relationship without trust, man."
Although they were wise words, they didn't apply to him as his relationship had complete trust. Don't punch him. Don't punch him. Don't punch him. Lucas chanted in his head, tightening his fist and closing his eyes, picturing Ava telling him not to injury the guy again.
"Maybe now she will break up with you and go on that date we planned."
Lucas' head whipped around to see Edward with an malicious smirk on his face. His fingers itched to wipe the expression off but when he moved foreword a step, his mate stopped him. She wasn't there physically but the idea that she was currently away from him, feeling hurt and betrayed, while he was downstairs talking, made him rethink his decisions. Ava would want him to walk away.
And walk away was what he did. Although, it was more of a speed walk as he hurried to comfort his saddened girlfriend. He followed her scent to their room and slowly opened the door. "Ava baby?"
"Hmm?" She was sat on their bed with a book in her hands, a sight he was used to seeing but never failed to take his breath away. The lack of tear stains made him relax slightly but he still approached with caution.
"I really am sorry for jumping to conclusions. I trust you completely but I saw him near you and I just don't trust him." He told her, silently begging her to understand.
She sighed and put her book down. "I know and I overreacted. I can see how it would've looked from your point of view. Eddi- Edward is bad news. I heard what he said to you downstairs and it seems he isn't as innocent as I thought. I guess he was flirting with me after all."
Lucas gave her a boyish smile but frowned when she didn't return it and just gave a small tight lipped one. She looked defeated. Ava really thought Edward wanted to be her friend, which didn't bother him that much. He would've liked for the guy to just want friendship with her as it'd be more people to protect her but it was unfortunate he wanted something more. He didn't like seeing the glum look in her eyes.
He walked closer and held her hands in both of his, placing kisses on them. "Thank you for understanding."
"Let's just get waffles. I'm hungry." She said, kissing his cheek and standing up.
He shrugged and replied with and ok as they began to walk out. On drive to the cafe, it was one of the rare times that the silence was awkward and uncomfortable. Lucas tried to fill it by asking questions and starting conversations but Ava only gave short, clipped answers until he gave up.
Her whole body language was different to how it normally was but he still held her hand firmly in his. When they sat down in one of the booths in the cafe, Lucas finally asked, "are you mad at me?"
"No." She said, looking at her menu even though she had already told him she was going to get the waffles.
"Are you sure?"
"You seem mad."
"Hi! What can I get for you two?" A girl, maybe their age, said to them in a bubbly voice and large grin directed at them both.
"I'll have chocolate chip pancakes." He said, handing the menu to her and looked at Ava.
"Waffles, please." She said with a tiny smile also giving the menu to the waitress.
The girl winced apologetically and said, "ooo. I'm sorry but we don't have any waffles left."
Ava looked down the table in sadness. She looked like she was about to cry any minute so Lucas pulled out some notes and quickly counted them. "Here's erm- fifty five. Can you tell the chef to make them for her?"
The waitress' eyes popped out at the amount of money in front of her but then looked dejected and said, "I am truly sorry but we don't do that. There are no waffles left so we cannot make them. We have muffins though!"
"Do you have pancakes?" Ava asked quietly.
"Yes! Would you like pancakes instead?"
Lucas watched her unexpectedly glare at the girl and say, "if you have pancakes, why don't you have waffles? It's the same batter!"
The waitress stuttered, "I-I-I erm- I d-don't-"
"Make me waffles!" Ava growled, making girl scurry off into the kitchen but as soon as she left, the expression on her face dropped and she saw Lucas' shocked one.
His eyebrows furrowed with worry as he saw her eyes fill with tears. He hastily sat next to her to comfort his mate. "Oh baby, what's the matter?" He asked softly.
"I- I don't w-want the waffles a-anymore and I was s-so mean." She cried into his shoulder.
"Baby girl, it's ok. Everything's fine. I'll just call her back and we'll change the order, ok? What do you want?"
"Which one?" He asked her in the most gentle voice he could produce.
"All of them."
"Ok, baby. I'll get you all of them." Lucas gently kissed her forehead.
Once they went back home, they were back to normal and she didn't seem to be annoyed with him to the best of Lucas' knowledge. Ava's mood was already at its highest as she was eagerly bouncing on her seat, wanting to go for a run in their wolf forms.
When they reached the edge of the woods, Ava couldn't contain her excitement and shifted instantly. She whimpered at her torn up clothes, prodding at them with her little blonde paw. It made Lucas coo at her until she was running in circles and tapping at him to shift.
They ran for a while, enjoying their time together in the out doors. Like the previous night, they spent an hour or two just looking at the sky, nestled together while talking to each other through the mind link. He had to admit that being on runs with Ava in wolf form was quickly becoming his favourite thing to do.
Surprisingly, despite their size difference, he didn't have to slow down for her to keep in time with him. However, her short legs would keep tripping over things, making him worried for her safety so he would have to constantly check up on her and make sure she was alright.
At one point, Lucas heard a loud bump and when he turned around, he saw that Ava had tripped over a large tree root and fell onto her face. It made him laugh but clearly, she didn't find it amusing as she growled at him and ran back to the pack house.
Lucas followed after her, confused and exhausted by all the emotions he had felt throughout the day. He needed to talk to her about it because he was starting to become irritated.
When he walked into his room, he firstly noticed that Ava wasn't there and then he saw the shirt he had left on the chair had disappeared. Lucas mentally smiled because it must mean she wasn't that angry with him.
He knocked on the room next door to theirs. It was Ava's from when they weren't a couple but she had hardly slept in it anyway. When there was no reply, he tried to open the door, only to find it locked.
"Go away!" An angelic voice shouted from inside.
"Why are you mad, Ava?" He asked.
"Because you laughed when I fell. You don't care about me! I hate you."
Lucas jaw fell open. He didn't know how she could possibly believe he didn't care about her. The only person he truly cared about was her. The fact that she would say it hurt him so much he couldn't even fathom the pain he would've felt if he registered the last three words.
"I don't know what's been up with you but you need to stop being such a brat." He said through the door, wiggling the handle.
"Go away! I hate you!"
He scowled through the pain and walked away. Lucas had enough so he pulled out his phone to text the only person that could help him.
Thank you for reading!
Can anyone else just imagine Ava yelling, "wolf mode activate!" every time she shifts.
Another great cover from @JessssieAlex!
@unique19_ sent me these two lovely covers.
And @rachelexie actually drew this. It's Ava and Lucas!
WORD COUNT: 3315
Much love <3