There’s a knock on my bedroom door; I turn over, trying to ignore my visitor.
Another knock echoes through my bed-chamber.
“Go away! It’s too early!” I groan.
“Come on, sleepyhead! It’s time to get up!” My dad calls out, “Or do I need to sing a song like I used to? Do you remember when I had to get you out of bed before school?”
Oh, goddess… please no!
I continue to ignore him, but truth be told… my dad has an awful singing voice. I had always hoped that maybe, just maybe, he was just putting it on, but in reality... it really is that bad!
“Ok, you asked for it…”, he starts taking a deep breath before singing in the most tone death of manners, “…MoRnInG hAs BrOkEn, LiKe ThE fIrSt MoRnInG. BlAcKbIrD hAs SpOkEn, LiKe ThE fIrSt BiRd”
“Ugh, go away, go away! Go and make someone else’s ears bleed”, I call out, shoving a pillow over my head.
He sighs, “oh well… maybe I should read this note that I intercepted. I believe a young man called Cale, no… Caleb, that was it! He gave it to one of the maids to give to you”, he says, pretending this is uninteresting news for me.
My eyes shoot open.
Darn him! I can hear the satisfaction in his voice... this was his trump card all along.
I shoot out of bed and almost throw myself off of my bedroom ledge to the floor below.
“No, that won’t be necessary, dad!” I say innocently.
“Ahh! There she is! Someone’s chipper this morning. Does it have something to do with this, Caleb? Do I need to have a fatherly chat and find out about his intentions? Will I need my silver bat?” He says, raising an eyebrow and smiling menacingly.
It’s times like these I really see similarities between Ozzy and our dad.
“Ha! No, I don’t think that will be necessary!” I snatch the note out of his hand and turn him towards the door, “now it’s probably best you get going. You must have lots to be done today! All of those Kingly duties and whatnot, so much to do so little time!”.
I know my dad is allowing me to move him. He could easily not budge if he didn’t wish to.
As I’m about to shut the door. My dad pushes his face into the doorway. Comically squashing his cheeks between the door and frame, his lips being squashed into a pout.
This man will just not give up today!
“Oh! Before I forget and I feel the fiery wrath of your mother, we are having a family meal tonight, don’t be late!”
“I’ll be there!” I promise as I shut the door, rushing to open the note.
My heart thrums as my eyes scan the note.
“Thanks for the dance. Meet me at Eclipse Park, 11am. Can’t wait to see you – Caleb x”.
I hold the note to my chest and sigh with a smile.
Goddess, what have I gotten myself into?
Jumping into the shower, I quickly scrub myself down, washing my long wavy chestnut hair and giving myself a pep talk.
There will be no more pity parties today; you can’t change the past and you aren’t doing anything wrong.
The weather is milder today, so I opt for skinny fit, black jeans, a black pullover hoodie and black Dr Martens… what can I say? I go for comfort over statement pieces.
Putting on some light makeup, I go for a bold, flirty red lipstick and quickly taming my wavy hair, I head to Eclipse Park.
The park is quiet today, though I use the term park loosely, Eclipse Park is actually more of a large reserve, with the odd play area for the pups to play on.
I’m early... and my nerves are getting the best of me.
Should I leave? I think to myself as I fiddle with the bottom of my jumper.
He could definitely get better company elsewhere.
No, stop it. No pity parties, remember?
With that, I put on my game face, sit a little straighter and suck in a deep calming breath. Turning my head to my left, I spot him – Caleb.
He’s wearing a denim jacket, a form-fitting white t-shirt, dark jeans and crisp white trainers.
As I walked towards him, I can’t help but admire his physique. I have to say, his body looks good, really good in that tight top… better than good, in fact. I realise a fraction too late that I’m staring at his chest and try to tear my eyes away before he notices.
“Hey, my eyes are up here y’know?” He says, smiling roguishly at me.
Crap… too late! I mentally facepalm myself, so much for playing it cool.
Deciding to playback a little, I respond, “are you telling me you don’t like my eyes on you? Because I will stop looking if that’s the case” I smile coyly.
He pulls a face as though he is thinking; before closing the distance between us, “hmm, how about, I let you off this time? But maybe to make it up to me, you’ll let me take you for a run?” He’s standing barely an inch away from me. I can feel the heat of his body; the scent of him encompasses me, making my knees feel slightly weak.
“But I can’t-”
“I know, I know”, he stops me, “I would like to carry you… if you’ll let me?” He says, holding the top of my arms and flashing a dashing smile my way.
He’s rubbing gentle, soothing circles on my arms; whilst looking at me with those deep penetrating green eyes; they bore into my own with so much understanding and comfort, making me swoon and my mind feels foggy. His smile alone is enough to shed some of my nerves; the only wolf that has carried me before is my dad… and even him I don’t allow to piggyback me anymore.
“Ok”, is all I can bring myself to say as I tear my eyes away from his, looking down at the floor and fiddling with my jumper anxiously. All previous confidence and playful attitude have evaporated, leaving behind my true self – the vulnerable wolf-less wolf.
“It’s ok, there’s nothing to be nervous about. I’ve got you, ok?” His tone is almost hypnotising the way it soothes my nerves. But, somehow, I believe him. I don’t think he would let anything happen to me.
I nod my head gently, biting my lip. Caleb raises his hand, cupping my face and uses his thumb to pull my bottom lip from my teeth. His eyes are transfixed as though he’s never seen something so fascinating.
The cool air turns thick with tension. Slowly, he starts to lean in, eyes still fixed on my lips; my heart is beating fast, pounding in my chest, my lips part in anticipation... I can’t help but wonder if he tastes as good as he smells.
The thing is, I know Caleb isn’t my mate. He smells great, but there is something that tells me he’s not my one. However, he has unquestionably brought something out of me… desire… and that’s been enough to sweep me off of my feet so far.
Just as I think he’s going to kiss me, he turns his head to the side, leans back and starts to strip, ready for his shift. I catch a glimpse of his eyes - they look as if there’s a raging war in their depths. As soon as I’ve spotted the emotions, I blink, and they’re gone.
Of course, growing up around nudity from the age of thirteen, I’m really not shy to a naked man. However, something about Caleb makes me blush. There’s that something about him that excites me... it’s alluring, seductive and dangerous at the same time.
Caleb shifts into his large, black wolf with silver eyes. His wolf is an Alpha. Which doesn’t come as much of a surprise to me. Seeing as his parents are the Alpha and Luna of his pack.
His wolf pads over to me, lifting my hand with his large snout whilst he gives me a good sniff, eventually rubbing his head and the length of his body along my torso and legs. I realise he is scenting me, but I’m not about to go and deliberately upset an Alpha wolf.
He turns around, back to me and looks over his shoulders. When I stay put, watching him, he huffs his frustration and looks to his back.
Taking the hint, I hop onto his large frame. His fur is thick and soft, like silk. I sit and stroke through his mane, for a little while, before leaning forwards and taking a firm grasp around his neck.
He takes off – fast. Sliding backwards a little I let out a pitiful squeak, quickly readjusting my arms tighter. I give him a little kick to the ribs for his games. His wolf makes a chuffing noise, as though he is chuckling to himself and starts to slalom here there and everywhere, causing me to let out a squeal and a small giggle.
The feeling is euphoric like I’m flying on top of the world! Oh, how I missed going for a run! I wish I could run alongside Caleb’s wolf with my own – Sierra. I miss her company... my mind feels quiet without her. I can only compare it to walking home on your own in the dark, it’s lonely, quiet and you get that intense feeling where you are so aware of your surroundings, of how eerily silent it is, just waiting for some ghouls or attackers to jump out at you.
Sierra would give me comfort and advice in my darkest hours, being the voice of reason when I was lost in my teenage hormones, angry at the world around me because I felt as though everyone and everything was against me… well, everyone but Rex that is.
She was my shoulder to cry on when I didn’t want to burden anyone else with my problems.
Then suddenly she was gone. Losing her was like losing my very best friend and an enormous portion of my own personality.
All of a sudden, I feel us coming to a stop. I hadn’t been paying attention to our surroundings changing; we are now on a small secluded section of the beach. I have never seen this part of the beach before. I’m sure not many people would ever know it is here.
It’s breathtaking. I think to myself.
The sea is clear and blue, glistening in the sunshine, making the sea look magical and inviting. Seagulls squawk loudly in the sky above, swooping and dipping down to float on the sea’s surface.
I climb off of Caleb’s wolf, giving him a quick thank you pat. After removing my shoes I walk towards the sea; the water laps at my feet, warm and welcoming. I sigh, sucking in a deep breath and hold out my arms slightly as my eyes close, absorbing the sun that’s kissing my tanned skin.
Large hands hold onto my waist as Caleb’s face comes down to rest on my shoulder.
I’m very aware that he’s naked; my core clenches at the thought, my mouth becomes slightly dry, making me lick my lips.
“It’s beautiful… I had no idea this place existed”, I tell him.
“I found this place through luck when I visited the Royal Pack when I was around sixteen years old”, he says.
“You’ve been here before? I don’t remember seeing you”, I say, furrowing my brows, trying to remember anyone with green eyes as captivating as his.
“You were about thirteen when I visited and most definitely taken by the Beta’s son, so I decided to keep my distance. I didn’t want to step on a Lycan’s toes. That wouldn’t end well for me”, he chuckles.
“Rex”, I breathe sadly.
He nods, “Would you like to know what I think?”
I don’t really know what to say, so I just nod my head as he pulls me to sit on the sand as he too sits down.
“I believe that a part of you, your wolf to be specific, was marked by Rex’s Lycan”.
“What makes you think that?” I ask, confused, “Is that even possible?”
“Did you know that a Lycan can mark someone’s wolf through their human counterparts physical touch alone?”
“No”, I shake my head.
“I believe because his Lycan marked your wolf, that’s the reason your wolf has disappeared”.
I look at him questioningly.
“Hear me out”, he chuckles, “Your wolf has not been able to handle the loss of her mate, so she’s taking herself away to the back of your being… to protect you as much as she can from her pain, I believe if she hadn’t done this… you might’ve died”.
“Do you really believe me and Rex are…were, mates?” I look to him with hope,
“I do”, he smiles sadly, “I don’t think a Lycan would take a mate so young if they didn’t truly believe they were meant to be together. I’m sorry you lost him”. He says sincerely.
I don’t know what to say... no one really talks to me about Rex, let alone having such an in-depth conversation about mine and Rex’s relationship. It’s like a breath of fresh air, relief fills me as some weight feels like it’s been lifted from my shoulders. Caleb makes me feel like I can talk to him about anything... as if my burden is his burden.
Just talking about Rex makes me feel a little less tense. Usually, I have to keep my thoughts to myself, but here is Caleb, openly talking to me about my potential fated mate.
“Do you think he might still be alive?” I ask.
He sighs, “I don’t know. But, I believe that if he was dead, it would’ve probably killed you too”.
I take his hand in my own “thank you”.
He turns to me, looking confused, “for what?”
“For not treating me as if I might break”, I smile at him warmly; before turning my attention back to the vast horizon beyond the sea. Making the most of this moment.