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

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Chapter Forty-Three

THEA PETROVNA

“Why are you looking at me like that?” Thea frowned at him as she took a step back, her hand already reaching for the door handle behind her back.

“Like what?” Orpheus snickered from where he was still sat behind the desk.

Right now, her mate looked like he wanted to devour her whole but she dared not voice that aloud in case he took that upon himself as a personal challenge.

“Nothing.” She replied instead but shook her head. “Was there anything else you wanted or am I good to go?”

“We’re still not finished with the second thing, actually.”

Thea frowned as she stared back at him, not catching the meaning behind his words until it was too late. It was only when he picked up his phone and made a show of pressing it against his ear that she realised what he wanted.

“You want me to make the call right now?” Thea questioned in a wary tone, trying to think of a plausible excuse that would be able to get her out of this.

“Yes, that would be great.” Orpheus nodded his head, chuckling quietly as he put down his phone; no longer needing to keep up the act. “The sooner we have an answer, the sooner we can start planning how we’re going to get our next sacrifice.”

Thea forced herself to nod her head even though she felt nauseous at the fact that he had just referred to an unborn child as a sacrifice.

“Sure, that sounds like a great idea.”

Seeing as she had no other choice, she reached into her pocket to retrieve her phone. As she had only called Anastasia last night, she clicked on the number and listened carefully while the phone rang, silently praying that this would be the one time that Anastasia didn’t pick up.

However, Thea was notorious for having things not work out in her favour.

“Thea, honey!” Anastasia greeted her happily as she picked up the phone on the second ring, clearly cheerful and excited about the unexpected phone call.

“Hi, Ana.” She cleared her throat as she greeted her friend. Pushing herself up from the door, she walked further into the office and took a seat on the other side of the desk with the intention of seeming as normal as possible.

When Orpheus did a few hand gestures to indicate what he wanted, she nodded her head before putting the phone on speaker and placing it down on the desk between them so they would both be able to hear. However, that didn’t make much sense to her as he was a werewolf and she had no doubt that he would be able to hear with his enhanced supernatural senses and hearing, but she didn’t have time to ponder over that thought for too long.

“How are you?” Her friend hummed into the phone.

“Good, but things have been kind of cuckoo lately.” Thea chuckled into the phone, her voice smooth and her words flowing appropriate one after another despite having slipped their code word into the sentence and thankfully, Orpheus didn’t even bat an eyelash in response.

“Yeah, things have been pretty cuckoo around here, too.” Anastasia replied, indicating that she understood that Thea wasn’t alone and they weren’t to talk about anything that would give up their whole sting operation.

Ever since the second trial and the trio – Marcellus, Anastasia and Orpheus – had banded together to get to the bottom of everything and put Orpheus and his accomplices behind bars – or worse, if possible – they had resorted to using specific code words to indicate all the possible situations and scenarios they could be in.

“Anything exciting happen to you lately?” Anastasia asked curiously, pretending as if they didn’t communicate at least every few days to catch up and keep each other in the loop.

“Not really.” Thea hummed aloud. “But one of the mated couples in the pack had a baby two days ago so I went over to the hospital to visit and see them all.” She lied expertly even though the three of them knew that she was completely talking out of her ass however, all of this was for her mate’s worth.

“Oh, I love babies!” Anastasia gushed. “I can’t wait for Marcellus and I to have babies.”

“Yes, you’ve mentioned that before.” This time, she wasn’t lying. “Have you guys decided when you’re going to start trying?”

“Things are pretty around here at the pack but once things start to calm down, we’re hoping to start trying, but probably not any time soon.” Again, not another lie. “There’s a few pregnant wolves around here so I should be able to get some practice babysitting for them before it’s our time.”

At the mention of this, Thea glanced up and locked eyes with Orpheus, both of their eyes twinkling as they had gotten Anastasia just where they wanted her. Thea resisted smirking at the fact that he thought they were on the same side even though he was actually the one being played and instead, returned her attention back to the phone call, fully aware that Anastasia was waiting for her to take the bait.

“Anyone due soon?”

“One of the nurses, Juliette is due next week.”

“Ah, that’s so great!” Thea gushed even though she felt completely the opposite.

Instead of being happy for this she-wolf named Juliette and her mate for getting ready to give welcome their pup into the world, she feared that, that wouldn’t happen, not when Orpheus and his wicked Lord Erebus were involved.

Just to keep up pretences, Thea and Anastasia were forced to keep up the conversation for a little while longer, not that it was very difficult as the two genuinely enjoyed each other’s company however, they ended the call when Marcellus’ voice sounded in the background as he called out for her.

“How was that?” Thea asked as she hung up the phone, not bothering to hide the smug look on her face.

“That was great!” Orpheus smirked as he watched her from under hooded eyes. “That went much better than expected. In fact, I think you may have a knack for this kind of thing.”

“Really?” Thea chuckled, only having to half-fake it. “Why do you mention that? Do you plan on getting me to make more phone calls like this?”

“Not exactly.” He shook his head while leaning back in his chair. “But I’m glad that you’re willing to get more involved in all of this.”

“Like we keep saying, this is for the greater good.” Thea forced herself to smile even though it didn’t quite reach her eyes.

“Yes, exactly!” He grinned but paused to stare at her, even going as far as to cock his head to one slightly, almost as if he was suddenly seeing her in a new light.

“What?” She couldn’t help but question when his staring gaze lasted for several moments, starting to make her feel uncomfortable as she didn’t know what was running through his mind.

“Do you want to know how I plan on paying you back for this favour?” Orpheus hummed quietly, staring at her from under dark, hooded eyes.

Thea pursed her lips but shook her head. She wanted to say that she didn’t need or want any favours from him as the thought of what she had just done was playing on her mind, but she couldn’t bring herself to say anything.

“You can join us for the next sacrifice.” Orpheus beamed at her with glee as he rubbed his hands together in excitement, almost as if he believed this to genuinely be a good idea.

Even though the thought of attending the next sacrifice and having to watch them do all those horrid things to a child made her feel sick and she had to clear her throat and clench her jaw to keep her breakfast in her stomach, she nodded her head.

-

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Layla Knight

11.12.2020

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