The Alpha's Surrogate [The Alpha's #1]

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Chapter Thirty-Seven

ALPHA MARCELLUS STORM

Marcellus hadn’t been able to sleep all night, not with her words constantly echoing in his mind; haunting him for the ordeal that was to take place in the morning.

“I can’t deal with you right now. Come back in the morning.”

What did she mean? He groaned into his hands as he dropped himself to take a seat on the edge of the bed, having asked this very same question multiple times over the past couple of hours as both him and his wolf waited for her to wake up. Why did she say she can’t deal with us right now?

I don’t know. His wolf growled in frustration, having answered in the exact same way multiple times to this same question. She had just given birth and she sounded very tired. She probably didn’t have time for your bullshit.

I really hope that’s all. Marcellus groaned in frustration as he forced himself up from the bed, unable to get the reeling thoughts out of his mind.

You’re going to tear a hole into the rug. His wolf warned as Marcellus kept up his incessant pacing around the room, his hands clasped behind his back.

Ignoring his question, Marcellus groaned again and tipped his head back as he stared up at the ceiling, not feeling the least bit reassured by his wolf who clearly didn’t think this a big of a deal as it was.

Do you think she knows?

There’s no way that she can know. His wolf denied, not sharing the same worries and fears as his human. You’re making this out to be a bigger deal than it is. Why don’t you get a cup of coffee to calm yourself down?

I think that’s just going to make myself more jittery. He growled quietly, though took heed to his wolf’s advice and doubled the request, a cup for both himself and his mate.

Thankfully, by the time he returned to the hallway, he could sense that she was now awake and moving around in her room.

You seriously can’t be scared of our mate right now. His wolf snorted at the absurdity of the situation, finding it comical that Marcellus, the Alpha of the Lupum Griseo pack was scared to go and tell his mate the truth.

She’s a little spitfire. Marcellus insisted, unable to hold back the whine that had somehow managed to slip in with his words. She’s going to tear my head off once I tell her just what a jackass we are.

You.

What?

Once she finds out just what a jackass you are. His wolf chuckled, making sure to insist that since this was his mess, he was in this alone.

Gee, thanks. Marcellus replied dryly as he rolled his eyes. I thought we were in this together.

Not when it includes her ripping your balls off and then shoving them down your throat.

Marcellus visibly winced and chose not to comment further as he forced himself to walk down the hallway, his heart rate accelerating the closer he got to the guest room where she was residing.

As both of his hands were full, he knocked on the door using his elbow but when he was met with no audible response but rather, some more shuffling sounding from behind the door, he sighed and once again, used his elbow to allow himself into the room.

“What are you doing here?” Anastasia snapped at him the moment he stepped into the room, her hands braced on her hips as she sent him a sharp, pointed look, a deep scowl and a menacing glare, clearly not happy to see him.

“You told me to come back in the morning.” He murmured quietly as he closed the door behind him with his foot, gulping as she continued staring at him; studying him, almost as if waiting to pounce.

In any other moment, both him and his wolf would have been excited at the prospect of his mate pouncing on him however, in this moment as she glared daggers at him, it had the opposite effect.

Anastasia snorted and rolled her eyes, moving around him to the wardrobe so she could continue packing her clothes, not deeming him worthy of her attention, and both him and his wolf couldn’t help but agree with her.

“What are you doing?” He asked in a desperate plea, his lips pulling down into a deep frown as he continued to watch her. “Why are you packing? Your maternity leave isn’t up yet.”

“No, but I’ve decided that I’d rather spend the rest of my time at my own house where no one is going to lie or fuck around with me.” She spat, not even bothering to spare him a pity glance as she continued packing, not the least bit bothered about folding her clothes properly or even being neat about it, for that matter.

“What do you mean?” Marcellus asked quietly, holding his breath as one of his greatest fears was on the verge of coming true.

Abort! Fucking abort! His wolf screamed at him.

But you were the one that was pushing me to finally tell her the truth! Marcellus audibly panicked, his eyes wide and large as his wolf started projecting his thoughts and feelings onto him.

That was before she knew the truth.

How the fuck does she know?

I have no fucking idea, but this is on you, man. Good luck! Give me a shout once she kicks you out on your ass and the coast is clear. And with that, his wolf was gone, retreating to a corner of his mind to watch everything play out through his beady, wolfish eyes, forcing his human to face the music alone.

Since he had been distracted with mind linking his wolf, Anastasia had chosen to ignore him and by the time he returned his attention to her, she had finished packing her case and was now trying to zip it up, though struggling as she hadn’t folded her clothes properly as she ought to have.

“You need to leave.” Anastasia stated once she noticed that he was back in reality, his eyes now returning back to their normal colour of hazel.

“I can’t leave.” He frowned softly, the desperate plea audible in his voice, not even trying to hide it. “We need to talk.”

“You need to fucking leave before I throw you out of here.” This time, she crossed her arms over his chest, scowling deeply at him.

If it was anyone else who had spoken to him in such a way, Marcellus would have taken it as a personal challenge for his position and pack but since it was his mate and his behaviour toward her warranted such a behaviour and so much more, he merely walked into the room and placed down her coffee on the bedside table while he moved over to take a seat on the desk chair. While he wanted nothing more than to pull her into his arms and bury his face in the crook of her neck where her sweet honeysuckle scent would be the strongest, he refrained simply because he didn’t deserve it.

“Please, can we just talk?”

“What makes you think that I would want to talk to you?” She snapped at him but when he sent her another pathetic, pleading look, she sighed begrudgingly and moved over to take a seat on the side of the bed, directly in front of him.

When she reached over for the cup of coffee and took a small sip, he held his breath as his heart soared with hope, but followed her lead and started on his coffee too before it got cold.

“We’re going to do this on my terms.” Anastasia cocked a dominant brow, daring him to deny or challenge her, the determination evident on her face and stance.

Marcellus nodded his head frantically. “Whatever you want.”

Anastasia scowled at him one more time before she took another sip from her coffee, took in a deep breath and exhaled deeply, prepping herself for the uncomfortable and frankly painful conversation that was about to ensue.

“Well, I’m going to start off by stating the obvious.”

“And what is that?” Marcellus asked after a few moments of silence where she just blinked at him, almost as if waiting for him to admit it.

“You’re really going to act like you don’t know, right now?”

Marcellus gulped and sighed before bowing his head in shame, unable to look her in the eyes.

“We’re mates.”

“Well, no shit.” Anastasia snorted and laughed at his admission, though the sound was far from humorous. On the contrary, it was rather sinister.

“How long have you known?” He dared to ask in a quiet voice, still too ashamed to look her in the eyes now that the truth had finally been revealed.

“Since yesterday morning, when I was in labour.”

“And that’s why you asked me to leave?” He asked even though by this point, he already knew the answer.

She didn’t bother answering the stupid question and instead, pushed forward on to the more pressing matters that were at hand.

“How long have you been lying to me?” Anastasia asked even though she already knew the answer to the question, but wanting to hear it from his own mouth.

“From the first day he met.” Marcellus forced the words out of his mouth as he lifted his head to lock eyes with his mate, this being the very least of what she deserved.

It was just too bad that she was stuck with him.

“And let me guess, you didn’t tell me that we were mates because you didn’t want a human for a mate?”

“No!” Marcellus denied quickly with wide eyes, not wanting her to feel that way when she couldn’t be further from the truth. “The fact that you’re human doesn’t change anything. In fact, it just makes you all that more special.”

“So, I would be less special if I was a wolf?” She cocked a defiant brow, her arms crossed over her chest as she stared back at him, determined to get the entire truth out of him today, even if it was the last thing that she did.

“No! That’s not what I’m saying at all.” Marcellus shook his head, denying the thought frantically however, he knew that he was fighting a losing battle. “You’re absolutely perfect just the way you are!”

“Well, if I’m so perfect, then why didn’t you tell me the truth in the first place? Why didn’t you tell me that we’re mates?” She asked him, her lips curling down into a deep frown, the hurt evident in her eyes despite how hard she tried to mask it with anger and her incessant questioning.

It was bad enough that he had lied to his mate for so long but now, he had made her feel inadequate and that was a grave wrongdoing on his part. When he had said that she was perfect, he absolutely meant it, especially since after having gotten to know her better, Marcellus had no doubt in his mind that she was far too good for him but now that they were fated together, he was desperate not to lose her.

“Or is it because I was pregnant?”

When his breath audibly hitched in his throat, Anastasia finally had her answer, this being the option that she had believed to be the most believable and valid form the very beginning.

“Please, just let me explain.” Marcellus gasped as he stared back at her, not at all above begging for his mate’s forgiveness.

When she didn’t nod her head, move or give away any indication that she had heard him, Marcellus took that as his cue to explain himself while he had the chance, not that it would help the situation in any way.

“I admit that when I first saw that you were pregnant, I judged you.” Marcellus paused to take in a shaky breath, already aware that there was no good that could come of this conversation other than the fact that he was finally being truthful with his mate. “I’m twenty-eight, so it’s been ten years now that I’ve gone without a mate and when I first met you, I was so excited because it meant that I wouldn’t have to be alone anymore. However, when I saw that you were pregnant, I felt so betrayed.”

“How the fuck have I betrayed you?” Anastasia growled at him and if the situation wasn’t so tense right now, he would have been proud of the menacing sound and the way that she had stood up against him despite the power struggle.

“You haven’t betrayed me and I know that now. But before, I was so hurt about the fact that you had decided to start a family without me. Without your mate.” He sighed and rubbed his hands down the side of his face, every fibre in his body willing himself to turn and look away in shame, unable to meet her gaze after everything that he had done and was now slowly coming forth to the light, but he forced himself to remain staring back at her, needing her to understand just how sorrowful and apologetic he was regarding the whole situation.

“You know that I’m only a quarter-wolf.” She stated the fact as she pursed her lips and stared back at him. “I told you that my dad is half-wolf and never ended up meeting his mate so we assumed that he was never given a mate, so how did you expect me to wait for a mate that I thought I would never have?”

“I know that now.” His eyebrows creased together as his lips pulled down into a deep, pitiful frown, having no one but himself to blame for all the wrongdoings and mistakes that he had made over the past two months.

“And what about the fact that you’re looking for a choice mate?” She cocked another questioning brow in his direction.

“Where did you hear about that?” Marcellus asked even though he had narrowed it down to three people; Dalton, Raphael or Justas. Regardless of who it was, this was no one’s fault but his own and now that he had made his bed, he had no choice but to lay in it.

“It doesn’t matter where I heard it from.” Anastasia rolled her eyes, her words bitter and laced with betrayal. “All that matters is that you were planning to replace me just because you assumed all these things about me when in fact, they all turned out to be nothing more than completely and utter bullshit.”

“I sent them both away today.” Marcellus spoke the truth, hoping to ease the situation even though he deserved all of her anger.

“That still doesn’t change the fact that even though you had a mate, you still tried to replace me. On top of that, you toyed around with me by sleeping with me even though you planned to reject me from the very beginning.”

“I could never reject you.” Marcellus denied in a firm voice, shaking his head frantically as he stared back at his mate with wide eyes, willing for her to believe him even though he knew it was a longshot. “And I wasn’t trying to replace you. You see, there’s this whole situation with the werewolf council-” He tried to explain but she was quick to cut him off, unable to take having to listen to anymore of his pathetic excuses and so far, not a single one of them had included an apology.

“Well, if you’re finished, there’s a few things that I would like to say.”

Not trusting himself to speak, Marcellus only nodded his head in response, unable to look away from her despite the fact that she looked like she would kill him if she could. And if she was a wolf, he had no doubt that she would have gone through with it, too.

“I may have been pregnant when you met me, but I was a surrogate for Justas and Raphael, carrying a baby for them when neither of them could do it for themselves. You may have judged me for my decision but if I could go back in time, I would do it all over again.” Anastasia sent him a fierce, pointed look before she continued with her monologue. “You may be this big bad Alpha who leads this huge pack but to me, you’re nothing. Absolutely fucking nothing. And the fact that you judged me without knowing what was really going on, is so disgusting. I don’t who you think you are, but just because you’re an Alpha doesn’t mean that you can treat the rest of us like scum. You can’t just toy with me as a side-piece while you’re out there looking for a mate because you know what? I’m so much better than that and mate or not, I don’t need you and after everything that you’ve done, nor do I want you.”

Anastasia scowled deeply as she looked away from him, unable to face him anymore.

“And do you know what the worst part is?” She chuckled, the sound falling short of being humorous. “I was really starting to like you, and I even started to feel bad because you had told me that you already had a mate. I had thought that I was betrayed another woman by continuing things with me. Do you know how disgusting that is?”

Unable to defend himself after all the grave crimes that he had committed against her, Marcellus failed to swallow the heavy rock in his throat, making it difficult for him to get the words out.

“I’m so sorry.” He choked over his words, having to force them out of his mouth. “I’m so sorry, Anastasia.”

Her frown deepened at the use of his name and when he opened his mouth to apologise again, Anastasia shook her head and looked away from him again.

“You need to leave.” She murmured quietly, her voice barely above a whisper, having already used up all her energy explaining her innermost thoughts in her earlier monologue.

“Please, Anastasia. I’m so sorry. Just give me another chance.”

“If you don’t leave now, then I will.” She threatened, knowing that there was no way he would be willing to allow her to move off pack lands, especially when things were looking so grim and rocky between them.

Unfortunately for Marcellus, he didn’t have anyone but himself to blame.

Marcellus didn’t even bother wiping away the evident tears that glistened in his eyes, a few growing heavy and streaming down his face. He silently begged her but as a few more moments passed and she refused to acknowledge him, let alone look at him, he rose to his feet and let himself out of her room with a heavy heart; unable to take her hatred and disappointment any further even though he deserved that and so much more.

-

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Layla Knight

07.11.2020

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