The Lion's Cat

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Just friends

Chapter 2

five years later | present time

“Princess Elizabeth felt lost at that moment.” My voice trembles for emphasis as I’m storytelling the werecats’ history. The kids’ attention is a hundred percent on me.

I close the book, knowing the finale by heart. “From three soul mates, she ended with the damned one. Their blood was everywhere, and she tried bringing them back to life.” I slide down from the pillow to the floor, holding the book as if it were a baby.

We use pillows instead of a couch in the living room, so you can imagine how many of them we have.

“She screamed their names out. The lioness princess was heartbroken, to say the least. But it doesn’t end here,” I continue, looking up toward the ceiling and forcing a single tear to slide down my cheek.

“Alpha Riven saw everything. The death of a vampire and a werewolf with a werecat in the middle of all. That poor wolf, who was also his son, was now gone. The Alpha didn’t wait for a day before declaring war to the vampires—”

“Wait. Then why did the Alpha persecute us?” the voice of a tiny boy asks with a raised hand.

I lift an eyebrow at him as the girl beside him slaps the back of his head. “Be patient!” she roars, making me chuckle.

“Thank you, Aurora,” I say to the little ten-year-old curly-haired feline. She flashes me a toothy grin while the boy complains under his breath. His hand is massaging the spot where she hit him.

“Well then, where was—” Waves after waves of power hit my senses instantly. My nose tracks down the bubblegum smell, catching an idiot of a lion stepping inside the living room.

His eyes are staring at the tiny, electronic device in-between his hands. Meanwhile, his dark dreads are nicely loose on the side of his face.

“Xavier!” a young boy yells, running toward him and successfully leaping onto his back. Xavier laughs, his arms quickly moving behind, holding the boy up.

His eyes then move to me, and his smile brightens. “Red with the kids. Are you storytelling again?” he asks, raising an eyebrow.

I nod, standing up. “Yeah, but I’ll continue another time, but spoiler,” I say, my gaze returning to the kids lying on the dozens of colorful pillows on the ground. Their heads lift enough to look at me.

“Fast forward to our present, we managed to make peace with werewolves, so we don’t need to hide anymore.” The kids cheer at that, returning to play amongst themselves.

I turn back to Xavier, seeing him put the boy down. I smile at the scene. He looks so happy. So much that he should have pursued an acting career. Xavier’s yellowish eyes focus back on me, and he motions with his head to follow him outside the living room.

I nod, and the moment we’re out of the little kids’ earshot, his smile drops, and he groans, massaging the back of his neck. “Fucking kids,” he murmurs, briefly closing his eyes.

I laugh, patting his back. “The more you hate them, the more they’ll come for you. Opposites really do attract after all,” I say, receiving a snort from him.

The lion leads me all the way upstairs, making a frown appear on my face. Where are we going?

“Opposites bring chaos and toxic relationships. I don’t know how the others do it,” Xavier says as he passes his fingers to the narrowed hallway wall filled with art nature-themed canvas.

“So you’d rather be with someone similar to you, I assume.”

He glances down at me. “Exactly. It’s way better, and there’s more chemistry.”

I fake a saddened pout as I hook my arm under his forearm and lean onto him. “That’s unfortunate. And here I thought we were destined to be,” I say, releasing a dramatic sigh.

Xavier laughs, opening a white door with a long feline scratch on it. His bedroom. “I don’t really think we’re opposites,” he says, pulling me inside the dark room.

My eyes blink, adjusting to the darkness and activating the night vision all werecats have. My eyes must be glowing a bright green color now. “No lights? Should I worry?”

“One sec– Shit,” he groans as the sound of something falling on the floor is heard.

I frown, looking around and finding him with his hands on his knee and a painful expression on his face. I can’t help but chuckle at the scene. “I don’t even wanna know how it happened,” I say, laughing.

Xavier simply groans before shaking his temporarily injured leg and finally turning on the light. I blink, pushing back my feline ability and admiring the gigantic black and white canvas with a realistically drawn lion, his eyes proudly looking ahead.

“Sell me some of that confidence,” I say, turning to him and surprisingly find a new wooden neat desk in a corner that once had his weights equipment. It’s been a while since I entered his room.

“Surprise,” he says with a confident smile on his face, leaning against the new furniture.

A frown sets on my freckled face. “Surprise for what?”

“You always complained of not being able to work in my room. Well, now you can.”

Well, damn.

Xavier and I have grown a lot closer these past years. Close enough to be considered best friends. Nothing ever happened between us apart from the occasional sexual tension we have when we don’t have sex for a while or when I’m in heat.

I shudder just at the thought of the heat.

Surprisingly, in five years, I haven’t developed any feelings for him. I mean, my heart has quickened when he’s too close, and goosebumps crawl up on my body when he hugs me or when he’s annoying me with his constant poking.

I know Xavier doesn’t want to settle down until he’s thirty-five, and I’m not looking for a serious relationship after what happened with that damn wolf years ago.

A hand around my wrist pulls me back to the present, and I let Xavier push my body down. I end up sitting on the new black chair. “Now you have no more excuses,” he says, his hands gently rubbing my shoulders.

I smile, rolling my eyes. “We’ll see. I also don’t want any distraction from human beings,” I say, opening the first book of a pile lying on the corner of the desk.

“Lucky for you, I’m a werecat,” Xavier says, pulling away from me. I turn around, seeing him sit down on the edge of the bed.

My eyes travel down his brownish athletic body, noticing for the first time how relaxed he is.

Before the war started, there was a lot of tension. We trained every day for any casualties, and now that the biggest one has been dealt with, everyone has let their guards down, me included.

“How are you?” I ask as I set the book back on the desk before standing up.

Xavier’s penetrating eyes widen as they watch me sit down next to him. “Why?”

I put my hands on the bed, right behind me. “You’ve been quite relaxed for the past month. The last time I saw you like this was years ago.”

He laughs, letting his back fall on the bed. “That’s what peace brings to a person. I’ve never felt more at ease than now. Especially with you here.”

I smile. “Oh, you should feel honored to have me here,” I joke, lifting my chin high as if I were a royal.

“Well, will I have the honor to have you sleep with me tonight? It’s been a while since last time,” he says, showing me a soft smile. “And there’s a desk, so you can’t use the ‘work’ excuse anymore.”

I sigh, lying down, my head resting on Xavier’s chest. “I’d be happy to take a nap now,” I say, yawning.

He shifts his weight until he’s spooning me, and I swiftly take off my shoes, curling a bit into a ball. “Much better,” he murmurs.

With a smile on my face, we drift off to sleep, listening to our hearts beating in sync.

A deep voice, talking near my ear, lures me awake.

“You ditched me to sleep with her?” a bitter, feminine voice says.

“What are you talking about?” the deep voice asks, his arm tightening around my waist. Xavier.

The girl dryly laughs. “We were supposed to meet in my room two hours ago. I thought something bad happened since you’re not the type to ditch someone without giving a heads-up.”

“It must have slipped my mind,” he groggily says, releasing a sigh. Xavier’s voice is deep as hell when he wakes up. It doesn’t even sound like him.

“So you’re not coming now?” she asks, almost in a whiny way that makes me want to roll my eyes.

“I’m not in the mood Nala. Let me sleep.”

Damn, Nala. I should have known it was her wench ass. And to think she even said it was a one-time thing.

Ugh, what a liar.

I have to keep my facial expression under control before a displeased one sneaks up, making her aware of my awakened state.

“Never thought I’d hear those words coming from you. Are you alright?”

Right there, an ominous growl rumbles from Xavier’s chest all the way to his mouth. The room feels colder, and my tiny feline has lowered her head in submission.

“Alright, alright. I’m leaving,” Nala says in a quiet tone. The sound of a door closing follows.

Xavier exhales before I feel something rough touching my cheek. I’m guessing it’s his hand. “It’s all your fault,” he whispers, his fingers lightly brushing the outline of my bow-shaped lips.

I don’t know how I manage to let out a soft exhale. My breathing was ready to stop because of this lion. Xavier’s hand gets replaced by something soft touching my cheek, and my mouth goes dry. The closeness is making me inhale his strong cologne. Afterward, my body gets pulled closer against his chest as my heart starts pounding at a quicker pace.

Did he just kiss my cheek?

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