The Alpha's Vessel [The Alpha's #2]

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Chapter Forty-Two

THEA PETROVNA

As much as Thea wanted to believe that she hated it here, that she hated staying here and she hated everyone associated with this pack, she knew that simply wasn’t the case.

After the first few awkward days that she had been here at the pack, everyone had been nothing short of kind, sweet and respectful of her so she definitely didn’t hate everyone associated with the pack. Although the same couldn’t be said about Beta Clayton whom she had really come to loathe these past few days, but that was a tangent off the current topic.

The fact that Malik loved his new school and had made friends with all the kids there didn’t help sway her any but instead, made her want to stick around. Unlike his old school where he only had a few friends and struggled to come out of his shell even when encouraged, he truly was thriving here.

Malik was enjoying school and looked forward to waking up and heading over there every morning, he always had a lot of stories to tell whenever either she or Orpheus picked him up after school and she could really see him growing more confident. Perhaps it was because he was now in a classroom of pups just like him but then again, they had spent more time at the Lupus Rapax pack

Thea wasn’t sure what was going on or what the teacher was doing right, but she was thankful.

Well, that was what she was trying to convince herself of because each time she thought about it, she tried to list all of the differences between then and now. The main big difference being that now, Orpheus, his father was in the picture.

As shitty as that made her feel, Thea was happy as long as her son was happy but these past few days, she had been doing a lot of thinking but most specifically, about their life after the pack because from where she was standing with the end slowly approaching, she had no intention of sticking around in the Apo to Chaos pack once all of this was over.

While it was still early days and only elder Malachi had been stripped of his position thus far, she had hope that it wouldn’t be long before all of this would be over. All she needed now was to gather enough information to put Orpheus in the same boat as Malachi as she doubted that he would snitch up his boss. Regardless of all the conflicting emotions that were rushing through her body when such a thought sprang to mind, she was doing this for the greater good – no pun intended – and as far as she was concerned, having Lord Erebus take over the werewolf world was not going to do them any good.

Unfortunately, nothing as simple as that as Thea had learnt the hard way that not everything was black and white.

Sighing and with her mind even more clouded than before, Thea let herself into the packhouse to grab herself some breakfast, having not had any time after the morning prayer; something which she was still struggling to get used to.

Every time she dropped herself to her knees next to Orpheus in the field, bowing her head and clasping her hands together, she couldn’t help but feel like an imposter.

To be more specific, she felt like an imposter most of the time, but especially since she had been trying to maintain this innocent act; pretending as if she was on the dark side even though she was secretly double-crossing them.

“What do you think you’re doing?”

At first, her body stilled and she had to tighten her grip on the plate she was holding so it wouldn’t fall to the floor and shatter but once she recognised his voice, she didn’t even bother sparing him a glance; not deeming the Beta wolf to be worthy of her time.

“Grabbing breakfast. Not that I have to explain myself to you.” She replied dryly and rolled her eyes before returning her attention to plating some eggs for herself.

“Someone sounds defensive.” Clayton whistled lowly as he leaned back against the kitchen counter, watching her carefully through suspicious, narrowed eyes.

“Well, you’d feel defensive too if you had a wolf breathing down your neck at every corner.” Thea huffed as she turned around and took a seat at the kitchen counter with her breakfast, smiling softly as Dylan walked into kitchen to get started on the prep for lunch.

“I haven’t got anything to hide.” The Beta wolf snorted, his eyes not once wavering from hers, not even when Dylan greeted him politely.

“And I have?” She questioned with a cocked brow, not the least bit concerned with talking with her open mouth as she simply didn’t care what this wolf cared about her, especially since he appeared to have a permanent stick wedged by his tight asshole.

“You said it. Not me.” Clayton chuckled and raised his hands up in the air, more than happy to poke fun at her expense.

“Haven’t you got a job to do?”

“Haven’t you got a job to do?” He countered as he took a step forward and took a seat at the counter in front of her.

“Wow! This isn’t childish at all.” She made a show of rolling her eyes. “But seriously, do you not have anything to do other than making fun of me?”

“I’m not here to make fun of you.” He shrugged. “I’m just here to grab a cup of coffee before I head back to work.”

“Well, don’t let me hold you back.” She hummed and pursed her lips before turning her attention back to her breakfast, the taste of it now lacking and seemingly bland with the terrible that she had to go along with it.

“Oh, I won’t.” Clayton chuckled and pushed himself up to his feet to grab that cup of coffee he had been talking about but of course, he couldn’t leave without taking one last jab at her. “Just so you know, I’m watching you.”

Her head snapped up at the threat, her fork hovering in mid-air

“What’s that supposed to mean? Are you threatening me?” She called out to him in an offended tone, fed up of the way that he had been treating her these past few days.

“And why would I do that?” He snorted as he stopped and turned around, a mocking glint in his eyes.

“I don’t know.” Thea scowled and shrugged. “But what do you mean when you say you’re watching me? How is that not a threat?”

“It means that I’m keeping an eye on you and once I find out the truth, I’m going to expose you for what you are!”

“I’m not afraid of you.” She shook her head, dropping the fork down on the kitchen island, resulting in a loud clang but neither of them could bring themselves to care as they were far too engrossed in this back and forth. The same could not be said about Dylan who was watching the exchange between the Luna and Beta wolf with wide eyes.

“That’s not what it looks like from where I’m standing.”

“You’re sitting!”

“Oh, so mature!”

“More mature than you!”

“That’s just because you’re old.”

“I’m not scared of you.” Clayton growled at her, taking a few menacing steps toward her. “Just because you’re the Luna doesn’t mean that I’m scared of you or that I have to respect you! Respect has to be earnt, and so does trust!”

Thea scoffed and rolled her eyes. She knew that this was what he had been trying to get at the whole time.

“If you’re not scared of me, then why do you shit your pants every time Orpheus so much as looks at you?”

“You and Alpha Orpheus are not the same person.”

“No, but we’re mates.” She cocked an eyebrow in his direction, daring him to deny the fact even though she wished she could deny the fact.

“You wish you weren’t though.”

Thea snorted but didn’t bother denying the claim. However, before she could respond, Clayton was quick to get a few more things off his chest.

“Just like you wished you had never met Alpha Orpheus in the first place.”

“What are you trying to say?” Thea couldn’t help but gulp as she stared back at Clayton with wide eyes, unable to believe what damage and pain he was willing to cause to her just so he could get the upper hand in this argument.

“All I’m going to say is that wolves talk and rumours spread pretty quickly around here. Especially after you decided to make yours and the Alpha’s private business and dirty laundry public by having that trial a few weeks ago.” Clayton paused to chuckle, finally acknowledging the fact that Dylan was also in the room with a large grin. “That’s what? Two now?” He chuckled, turning his head back to face Thea. “Third time’s the charm?”

Even though Thea had seen this coming, she couldn’t believe that he actually had the nerve to go through with it. The fact that Dylan gasped from behind her just solidified the fact that Clayton was completely out of line. She may not completely understand what he was trying to get at – whether he was implying that Orpheus would rape her again to make that three times from him, or Beta Clayton wanted a piece of her to make it three in total – but she could barely believe that he was holding this over her head; as if she had done something to deserve all of the despicable things that had happened to her.

Once again, she was reminded of the prejudice that people had toward rape victims.

Before she could open her mouth and defend herself – no doubt with a shaky voice as despite the fact that she refused to admit it, his words had really gotten to her – a tall, glowering loomed over the Beta wolf from behind.

“Beta Clayton, you’re not threatening my mate, are you?”

“No, of course not, Alpha.” Clayton hissed and grinded his teeth, still staring at her, his eyes not agreeing with his words. “Luna Thea and I were just talking.”

“Didn’t sound much like talking to me.” Orpheus snorted as he walked further into the kitchen to stand between them both. “In fact, I heard everything that you said to my mate.”

Instead of answering or questioning him further, all Clayton could do was gulp and take a step back.

“I’ve spoke about this to you before but it’s clear that you just didn’t understand so I’m only going to tell you this one last time. If you threaten Thea, talk to Thea or even look at her funny one more time, then you won’t be the Beta of the Apo to Chaos pack anymore, and you and I both know that I’ll be good on that.” Orpheus threatened in a scarily calm tone, his gaze not once wavering from his second in command

“Yes, Alpha. Sorry, Alpha.” Clayton bowed his head in submission, not daring to look up. Although it was only once Clayton has scurried out of the kitchen that he turned to face her.

“Thea, can I speak to you in my office?” He asked in much quieter, softer voice as he turned his head to glance at her.

“Sure.” She forced herself to reply in a small voice and stood up from where she was sitting.

Orpheus didn’t say anything more as he nodded his head at Dylan and turned his back to head back to his office, leading the way as he trusted her to follow behind.

“What did you want to ask me about?” Thea asked as she closed the door behind her, not daring to take a further step into the room as she wasn’t quite sure what kind of mood Orpheus was in this morning.

Just because he had stood up for her in the kitchen didn’t mean that he wasn’t going to take any verbal swings at her himself.

“I’ll start off by apologising for Beta Clayton’s behaviour.” Orpheus groaned as he dropped himself in his desk chair. “When I spoke to him a few days ago, I thought that he understood his boundaries but apparently not. This’ll have to be his last warning before I’m forced to take action.”

Not in the mood to stick up for the dickhead that was prepared to take a verbal swing at her whenever he saw her, Thea chose to keep quiet.

“Is there anything else that you wanted to talk to me about?” She asked in desperate hope that he would say no and she could leave as right now, she needed a few moments to collect herself after the verbal lashing that she had just taken from the Beta wolf.

“There is actually, yes.” He nodded his head before sitting up straighter in his chair, his face even more serious than it had been a few moments ago. “There’s word of there being a heavily pregnant she-wolf in the Lupus Griseo pack.”

“Marcellus and Anastasia’s pack?” Thea questioned in a low murmur.

He nodded, his lips curling up into a small smile. “That’s where you come in.”

“What do you need me to do?” Thea asked quietly after a few moments, almost too afraid to find out what the answer would be.

“We need to find out a few important things such as how far along is she, when the due date is and perhaps also her mate situation.” Orpheus stated with a simple shrug of his shoulders, almost as if he didn’t want to gather that information so he could rob the poor she-wolf of her child as sacrifice to arguable, what could be the evillest God of all.

“And you want me to find out all of that?” She gulped in fear though refused to show any sign of weakness as she would that would raise a suspicious eyebrow.

“Yes.” He grinned. “Since you’re such good friends with the both of them, we thought it should be pretty easy for you to find out that information without raising any suspicions.”

Once again, Thea gulped as frankly, she didn’t know what to say. While she didn’t know anything about this supposedly pregnant woman, or even if she was pregnant in the first place but finding out this information about her while knowing the fate that she and her unborn child would suffer made her feel sick to her stomach. The whole time, all she could think about was she may have been in the same position five years ago without even knowing it.

She wasn’t sure how long she had zoned out but was forcefully snapped back to reality when he cleared his throat in attempt of coaxing a response out of her.

“What do you say?” Orpheus asked her with evident hope glimmering in his eyes. “Can you help us?”

“Yes.” Thea replied and nodded her head without an ounce of hesitation in her voice.

While she appeared to be confident on the outside, her inside was doing somersaults at the thought of another innocent child being hurt – so much worse than hurt. But this time, she was going to be a part of it.

-

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Layla Knight

19.12.2020

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