Chapter 16: Michael
Michael rubbed a hand over his face as he walked down the beach. Him and Matthew had not returned until late into the night. Michael had contemplated awakening his mate, but he had painfully decided otherwise. He knew that she had not been sleeping well, and she had her first swim lesson to teach today. He smiled. They will love her, he thought. He wanted her to build trust with his people, not only as a friend of the Oceanside Alpha, but as their future Luna. After Matthew leaves, it will be announced, he thought. Keeping distance from her had crippled him. He could not wait for the day when he could embrace her entirely.
Matthew had probed about the mark on Michael’s neck. While mates were a fairytale told to pups, every wolf did know what a mate mark was. Matthew had passed some asinine comment about indulging in Michael’s Luna, to which Michael had bore his canines and that was the end of the conversation. Lunas were a delicacy among males, just as Alphas were to females. Powerful and hard to capture. Michael had gone through many she-wolves, but he was not sure if Lunas were the same way. The thought of his Luna with anyone but him put his teeth on edge. Matthew had kept trying for her name, and Michael told him that he was delusional to think that he would divulge that information now.
Michael stopped walking as he spotted his mate not too far ahead of him. Her beautiful hair had been pulled into a ponytail. His brief panic attack was calmed when he noticed a bandage covering her mark. She was wearing a black sports bra with black bikini bottoms. Probably worried about a wardrobe malfunction, he thought with a smirk. His wolf purred with need, but he ignored it. Audrey was in the water beside Elizabeth, both women conversing with the couple in front of them.
The male was Kraig, and the female was his wife, May. Kraig’s brown hair was messed atop his head, his bare back facing the beach. He wore a pair of white swim trunks. May’s short red hair licked her ears, and a blue bikini contrasted the brightness of it. Michael began approaching again and spotted the two children between the couple and Elizabeth. None of them were far enough in the water yet to swim; they just stood in the shallows as the children played. Nico was twelve years old, and his sister, Ava, was ten. Both children inherited their mother’s bright red hair, and their father’s bright green eyes.
Elizabeth began backing farther into the water and outstretched her hands to the children. Audrey copied her, and both children slowly stepped forward. Nico grasped Elizabeth’s hands while Ava grasped Audrey’s. Michael noticed the parents’ bodies instantly tighten with concern. He walked up to the ocean and Kraig’s head snapped behind him. “Alpha,” Kraig said in slight surprise. “We did not think that we’d see you this morning.”
“I did not want to miss our guest’s lesson,” Michael said as he entered the water. He approached the couple and stood beside them.
Michael’s heart swelled as his mate engaged with Nico. Her eyes were soft, and a breathtaking smile highlighted her face as she guided the child. She had only been his mate for a few days, and he already craved for her to bare him a child. He had not wanted an heir outside of obligation until he found her. He wanted a child with her out of love. He ran a hand through his hair. The weight behind that word. A mating bond does not automatically create love between the two; love was based off proof and the ability to be deserving of that love from the other. What have I done to earn her love? He thought bitterly. She has done everything to earn mine. He wanted to admit it to her, but a part of him feared that she did not feel the same way.
“You’re doing very good with your kicks,” Elizabeth told Nico. “I want to start releasing you, very slowly.” May’s sharp intake of breath jerked Elizabeth’s head up. She nodded to Michael, then fixated on May. “Our wolves by instinct know how to swim. Our counterparts have to learn, but our wolves help us achieve it. We will not leave the shore where he can stand until he achieves it well.” Her eyes shifted back to Nico. “Listen to your wolf. He will guide you. Move your arms like I showed you.”
“What if I can’t?” Nico’s voice trembled.
“I am not leaving you. I will be right here. And you’ll be able to stand if you get scared.”
Nico released his hands and allowed his body to float. He began working his legs while his arms treaded the water to keep his face above it. Elizabeth’s eyes never left Nico’s face, her hands remaining outstretched to the child. Michael’s eyes shifted over to Audrey and Ava. To his surprise, the little girl was already swimming. Audrey was grinning as the child swam laps around her. When Michael’s eyes returned to Nico, he found the child swimming as well. Their wolves truly are guiding them, he thought. At this rate, all of Mountain will be swimmers within a week. “Very good, both of you!” Elizabeth exclaimed. Michael heard Kraig and May exhale a breath of relief. Elizabeth’s eyes flickered over to Michael’s and brightened. His wolf purred softly.
“Interested in a lesson, Alpha?” Elizabeth asked. Michael repressed a growl. He heard so many people use his formal title, but it always sounded so seductive when she said it. Had they been alone, he would have pounced on her. He grinned. “I suppose so. The children caught on quite fast.”
“The adults should catch on even faster due to the age of their wolves, and you should be faster than them,” Elizabeth said. “Hey, Nico, why don’t you help Audrey and your sister teach your parents how to swim?”
“Come on, daddy,” Ava’s voice sang. Elizabeth glanced at Audrey who simply nodded.
Elizabeth walked a couple of feet away from the family and beckoned to Michael. He instantly followed her. A smirk spread across his face as she descended away from the part of the shore where she could stand. Michael’s height brought him farther into the water to her, the ocean lapping at his pectoral muscles. Elizabeth was treading water to keep herself afloat. With the water obscuring his hands from sight, he gripped her hips tightly and pulled her into his body. He kissed her lips briefly. “Fuck, I missed you,” he whispered.
“We’re going to get caught.”
“Little wolf, you forget how big I am compared to you sometimes.”
“So, show me” she teased as her eyes flashed gold.
Elizabeth wrapped her legs around Michael’s waist, and he growled. “Little wolf, the things that you do to me.”
“You said that no one can see me, right?” she smiled. “I’ve missed you, too.” In one swift motion, Michael freed his swollen erection from his swim trunks, pushed her bikini bottoms aside, and thrust into her core. He groaned as he worked his hips. He could not go as fast as he wanted to with the risk of someone approaching them, but she moved herself with him to compensate. Just one night away from her hand been torture. His body physically ached for her, his heart longed for her. The mating bond would be the death of him, and he would accept it willingly. She was a high that he never wanted to come down from.
Elizabeth gasped softly as her orgasm tightened around Michael’s cock. He groaned as he spilled deep inside of her. He kissed her softly. “I can’t wait until it’s our child that you’re teaching to swim,” he murmured.
“Neither can I,” she whispered. “But, first, I need to train their father.” He purred and kissed her again. Whenever it would happen, he would be the father to her children. My Luna and mother to my children, he thought. She pulled herself away and readjusted her bikini. Michael growled in protest but adjusted his attire as well. “Alpha, I cannot quite lift you off the ground, so you’ll need to do that yourself. Lean your body forward and allow your legs to float away from you. Scissor your legs while your arms pull you toward me through the water. Find your balance.”
Michael nodded and allowed his chest to lean forward, the water greedily gripping his throat. He felt slight panic as he became weightless. His wolf stretched within his body as he kicked his legs and pulled with his arms. He fixated on his target before him, his mate. He began to approach her, and she swam backwards away from him. He growled in frustration and attempted to reach her again. He gasped as his wolf pressed against his skin and clawed beneath it. He succumbed to his wolf’s request to take control and began swimming even faster. Each time that he got close to Elizabeth, she would back away. He snarled and charged forward. He slid his arms around her tightly and kissed her. She laughed at him. “Don’t like chasing me, Alpha?”
“I will always chase you, little wolf.”
“You’d better,” she said after she kissed him.
“You should cut your lesson short so that we can go home,” Michael said.
“Well, the kids are swimming, so I think that it’s safe to say that the lesson is over. But I need to meet with Vincent now that you’ve returned. He wants to talk about something.”
“Surely you can’t go to a meeting with an Alpha wet in a bikini,” he murmured as he trailed his lips along her cheek.
“Of course not,” she grinned. “I was going to shower and change first.”
“What a coincidence, that’s what I was going to do before I take a nap.”