Nevan and I finish dinner and Porter joins us once he wakes up. He hugs me and gives me a kiss on the top of my head and I wave him off. He chuckles as he sits down.
"You've saved Christmas!' Porter says through a mouth full of food and I laugh. "Seriously this is really good. I like the scones too."
"Right? I told her that she has to put them on her menu when she gets her shop." Nevan chimes in. Porter nods emphatically.
"Thank you. I'm glad you like it." I say.
"What made you take cooking as a career?" Nevan asks.
"Food is important but it became less urgent after I came to live with my family. It became more fun." I say.
"That makes sense." He says.
"What about you? Why tattooing?"
"Well, I was an artist before this and an advertisement artist before that. I've always liked drawing." He says with a smile then his brows furrow I know he's thinking about what I've been worrying about all day. Hes basically immortal, I am less so.
"Don't worry about it right now." I say with a hand on his.
"We're going to have to address it sometime." He pushes.
"I agree. But there is nothing we can do about it now. Unless you have a library that deals with this kind of stuff." I push back.
"What is going on?" Porter asks confusion written on his face.
"Dealing with my mortality." I say.
"Oh... shit. Do you know a library like that?" He asks.
"Ya. Papa Shadow is quite the academic. We have a library at my house." I say making eye contact with Nevan. "We'll look for something." I assure him. He gives me a nod and goes back to eating.
"You guys can read each others minds?!" Porter asks. I can't help but laugh which gets Nevan to laugh too.
We leave Porter with a load of scones and a promise for some more goodies. We hold hands all the way home. When we arrive I see Gemma running out to her car so I stick my head out of the window to yell at her.
"Run! You're going to be late for your hot date!! Good luck!!" I yell.
"Love you! Bye! Ps. your mate is hot!" She yells.
"I know right?!" I yell back. She hops into her car and peels off for her date. I hope I don't get called for more damage control.
"So... you think I'm hot?" Nevan jokes.
"Clearly. Do you want to come in? I'm off tomorrow too so I'm probably going to spend the night in the library." I ask knowing he hasn't stopped worrying just like me.
"Yes please." He says and I lead him in saying hi to Papa Luca who is the only one home right now. We head up past my room and into the library. It's small but full and Papa Shadow has his own system. Which means it's pure chaos for anyone but us.
Poor Nevan looks a bit lost so I give him the tour.
"This pile is for types of supes, this pile is magic and this pile is for mates." I say as I walk around the room gesturing to the columns of books. "This is probably where we want to look, in magic and mates. We'll ask Papa Shadow when he gets home. He should know more than me." Nevan nods and grabs a book. We look for some solution as to me growing old and dying. This hadn't really been an issue before for me. I always accepted that I was human and would take the happiness I was given in the meantime. Now it's different, now I have him. My heart aches at the thought of dying and leaving him all alone. We have to figure something out.
We spend hours looking in the mate books. Some touched on mating another species but not humans. Some even said supes couldn't mate humans as we were a food source. That one didn't make me feel too good about myself.
After a few hours Papa Shadow comes up to check on us.
"Hello my sweet, hello Nevan. What are you two doing up here so late?" He asks looking concerned.
"We are looking into solutions." I say with a shrug.
"Solutions for what?"
"My short lifespan." I say pulling another book into my lap.
"Oh... oh my. I hadn't even thought..." he stutters.
"It's ok. We'll figure it out." I reassure Papa. He looks lost in thought but heads over to a bookshelf of all things. I forgot we had those behind all the piles and stacks.
"I always say start at the beginning." He says pulling out a large gilded book. "Origin stories have always been a good starting point. They lead you in unexpected places."
"Thank you Papa." I smile taking the book. Nevan and I look at the golden cover. The Origins of The Supernatural. It was there we found a story.
Long ago when the myths were but a dream. There were the three Spider Queens. The spinners and weavers of fate. They lived in the dark hidden places of the world seeing all but became lonely. One day they created the creatures of magic and let them wander the earth. The sister queens loved them so much they each added a gift for them.
The oldest, Verena, gave them humans so they could feed.
The youngest, Amara, gave them mates. The creatures' souls would be shared so they wouldn't be as lonely as the queens were.
The middle sister, Sybella, had a vision that a Savior would be needed for their creatures. So when the time was right she would create a long lifed human girl born of darkness and suffering but who knew love and magic like no other. The Savior would be saved by four of the darkest of their creatures who would understand her pain. She would also be mated to the four creatures who would understand her heart.
They would help bring balance back to the world.
All Hail Queen Reyna.
"It kind of sounds like you." Nevan says. I look at him shocked.
"Hardly." I snort.
"Actually, my sweet, he may have a point. Look at the similarities. You are human, you were taken in by us. We aren't exactly considered normal supes." Papa Shadow suggests. I shake my head in disbelief.
"It also says four mates and Savior!" I argue. I am pointedly ignoring my actual name on the bottom of the page covered by my hand. This is a lot.
"Well we can always keep looking but I think this is it." Nevan says. "You have no fear of magic or supes. I mean you just walked up and pet my dragon, and you challenged my brother to spar to help him deal with his feelings. And if your past isn't darkness and suffering I don't know what is."
"Alright, let's say this is about me. Which its not. It says three other mates. You good with that Nevan?" I ask.
"I'm bi. So ya. I'm good with it." He says with a sassy smirk. Well that backfired.
"And what balance back to the world?" I almost shout. "That sounds like a tall order. I just want to cook for people!"
"Ro, it's ok hun." Nevan says pulling me into his arms. "Let's take a break. Get your mind off all of this." I nod quietly.
"Go watch a movie my sweet. Take some time with your mate." Papa Shadow says. "I'll clean up."
"Thank you Papa." I give him a hug. He sends his soothing darkness over me and eats a bit of my fear. "I love you." I whisper.
"I love you too my sweet Rowena." Papa whispers back. He releases me back to Nevan who strokes my back in comforting circles as I lead him to my room.
We pile into my bed and turn on an action movie.
"Have you always lived around here?" I ask.
"No, I was actually born in Russia. Porter was born in Ireland." Nevan says.
"Born? Not hatched?" I joke. Nevan throws his head back laughing.
"I was not hatched."
"Sure you weren't." I say looking suspicious making him chuckle again. "Can you speak Russian?"
"da, ya mogu, moya lyubov'."
"I don't know what that means but I like it." I admit. He chuckles again and lays a kiss on my forehead. I snuggle into his shoulder and quickly fall asleep.