Beauty in the Beast

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Chapter 10

My IV bag was on a set of wheels that carried me down the hall. After numerous refusals to let me see Nick, I finally caved and negotiated something they could give me: Derek. Alex promised me privacy but I knew he didn’t like it. Not only was he not being my protective detail but he was also somehow going back on his “bro-code” with Emmett by letting me see Derek.

I don’t know what I expected to see when I entered his room. Maybe his body hooked up to all kinds of machines to keep him alive? The only wires that came from his body were the same monitors I had and the same IV bag; minus the wheels. He was in a hospital gown with more bandages than me. Sweet Moon Goddess, please let him be okay. I sat in the chair by his bed and took his hand in mine. I don’t know how long I sat there before that blonde nurse came in.

“Am I in your way?” I asked her.

“No, you’re fine.” She smiled at me but tried not to make eye contact. She wrote down what his monitors read, I don’t know why but I watched her every move. I know this wolf.

“Claire.” She looked up at me, shock and pity across her face. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to startle you, I just didn’t think I’d see you here.” The grip I had on Derek’s hand tightened.

“Don’t be sorry, it’s me who should be apologizing.” Her cheeks turned a rosy color. Claire and I went to school together. She was one of the mean girls that brought me to leave school and go to my mother on the day she was killed. She was also one of the wolves who encouraged the bullying to stop because I was too “fragile” and was worried I would snap and massacre the whole lot of them. I didn’t disagree with her, there was a lot she did to make me want an apology from her. And yet I held no ill feelings for the girl.

“We can’t change the past, we can only do better for the future.” I stared at Derek as the words left my lips.

“His bandages will need changed in about twenty minutes, but you can stay with him until then.” Her soft steps carried her out of the room.

I sat with him until Dr. Morris came in and kicked me out. She was a nice lady, in her late forties with fiery red hair. She was head of the trauma department at the hospital. She had a nurse, not Claire, escort me back to my room. I guess my bandages needed changed as well. I sat in the bed for about ten minutes before Dr. Morris came in.

“How’s Derek?” I asked.

“He’s healing well.” She smiled at me as she reached up to the wall and grabbed a pair of fresh gloves.

“When will he wake up?”

“He’s heavily medicated from his surgery. Everyone recovers differently.”

“Ouch—“ I flinched at her touch. The dried blood in my hair was pulling at my scalp. She continued to unwrap my head until I was free of bandages.

“You’re healing very nicely.” She smiled and grabbed a cotton tip, rubbing the wound gently. “Much faster than I anticipated.”

“Great, when can I go home?” She laughed at my question.

“In a day or so, we’ll reevaluate.” She turned to her nurse. “Rewrap this for me.” A knock at the door caught everyone’s attention. The smile on my face was bigger than it’s been in a long time. Alex stood in the doorway with my dad beside him.

“Can we come in?” He asked.

“Of course, we were just finishing up.” Dr. Morris left us with her nurse. She wrapped my wound gently and left the three of us alone.

“How are you feeling?” My dad asked.

“Fine. I’m ready to get out of here.” I sat up as much as I could.

“Are they feeding you?” I laughed at his question.

“Yes, Dad, they’re feeding and watering me with plenty of sunshine.”

Once nightfall took over my dad left me for the night with Alex. Protective detail wasn’t as easy to lose as I would have liked. I let out a large yawn and slid into my bed.

“You don’t have to stay.” I told him.

“You know I do. I already got hell for bringing your dad here, I can’t screw up all of my orders.” He smiled and made himself comfortable on the chair.

“Where’s Emmett been?” I wasn’t going to ask, but I couldn’t help but feel slightly hurt he hasn’t been in to check on me.

“He would be here if he could.” Alex looked at me with sympathy in his eyes. “We were all given different orders to get to the bottom of this.” Alpha orders trump everything else going on in your personal life. A light tap on the door and a small voice had me turning to Claire. She smiled at me but didn’t come in the room.

“Derek’s awake.”

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