The words he spoke were the truth.
He’d die for Angel. He’d kill for her, and he’d lay the body at her feet as a prize for her love. Which only left one thing left to do, he was going to ask her to be his mate.
After of course, he told her about his past. Which he could have jumped over that hurdle today. Instead, here they were.
He smelt the young alpha before he saw him. The air of hostility and dominance blew through like a black wave intent on chaos and destruction.
Alpha Elijah Zedrik came striding towards them, his beta and mate hot on his heels.
Artemis’s head snapped from Angels father to the young alpha whose eyes were taking in the form of his true mate.
Elijah’s eyes darkened as he realized she was wearing Artemis’s clothes and carrying his scent.
Artemis was proud she carried his scent. It was practically seeping from her skin and from between her thighs.
As The young alpha stepped closer, a protective surge washed over him and he stepped in front of her, instantly shielding her from the young alphas view.
A low territorial growl slipped from the alpha and he tensed before forcing himself to relax.
“Welcome” He gritted between clenched teeth forcing a half smile half scowl. He was obviously trying his very best to not let his wolf surge forward.
“I feel at home already” Artemis smirked watching as the alpha rolled his shoulders as if he could roll off Artemis’s words.
He watched in displeasure as the young alphas mate stepped forward. “It’s lovely to see you all” She said with hints of aggression and sarcasm, “I believe it’s best if you simply go to her room, grab her things and be gone” she said waving her hand in a shooing gesture.
Artemis growled , his body shaking dangerously and stepped forward, the air darkened around him and Marissa took a step back, her eyes lowering to the ground, “We will do as we please and I will only address the alpha. I will never address you as the title you’ve taken was never yours. In the eyes of many wolves, you’re not a true Luna” he spat, letting his wolf surface and shine through, rattling her even more.
She whimpered and hung her head, her shoulders shook. She was a weak wolf. Unworthy of the high title she had taken.
“You have no right to come onto my territory and address my mate, my packs Luna, like that”
A fight was brewing. Artemis could feel the shift in the wind. His guardians stepped closer to Angel, protecting her on each side. Malcolm came to step beside his alpha, his eyes locking into the young alphas beta, silently warning him.
The hairs on the back of his neck stood on end and he braced himself firmly on the ground.
A small, gentle touch on his lower back had him stiffening before relaxing slightly. A part of him was glad her touch didn’t sooth him as a mate should, he wanted to be angry, he wanted a fight. The young alphas blood called to him, stirring his blood lust. It had been awhile since he’d had a good kill.
“Artemis , let’s just go get my things and get out of here. I don’t want to be here any longer than necessary” she said softly, caressing his wolf with her voice.
He gave a curt nod even though he didn’t truly want to agree he found himself following her persuasion.
The shock of the crowd had him glaring, the facial expression set in stone. His own guardians stared at the small female that had managed to collar their alpha. A new light shining behind their eyes.
“Let’s go” he barked at them stepping around the displeased and territorial alpha.
Hackles raised he began walking towards the large building he assumed was the pack house. In honesty, he had no clue as to where he was going but he wasn’t going to admit it. He assumed Angel would step in and guide him along. He just hadn’t wanted to stand in front of the alpha any longer.
Just as he’d hoped, Angel stepped next to him and instructed him as to where to go. He followed her into the vast house and through the halls to a single wooden door on the first floor.
Her scent was so strong, it seeped from beneath the door.
She walked in first and immediately ran to the left disappearing behind another door.
Artemis stepped inside and now understood why she was amazed with his room when she’d first seen it. Her room was tiny, her small one person bed fit nicely in the corner, a small wooden nightstand sat next to it, littered with various items. The air felt tight and humid from being locked up for too long. The floor was clear of clothes and garbage. Various pictures of her with other wolves hung along the walls as well as a few with her family.
A lone picture on her desk caught his attention.
Walking over he stopped and stilled as he stared down at a picture of her true mate. It was folded and crinkled, her agitation with the photo was obvious and yet she’d taken the time to try and smooth it back out.
Artemis had been ready to tell her his past but was she ready to let go of hers?
Could she walk away from her true mate? He was alive, flesh and blood and Artemis felt that, that was a waste.
If Emily was flesh and blood....
Not the same circumstances, is what he told himself.
The soft patter of her feet stepped back into the room and she stilled. She must have realized he’d found the picture.
A soft feminine sigh sounded before he felt the heat of her body at his back, “It’s not what you think,” she said. Which was the most cliche thing to say. “I- well-”
She was interrupted as her door flew open, Artemis turned sharply putting himself in front of Angel. His teeth bared he let his wolf shine through his eyes as he eyed the threat. The young alpha stood in the doorway, his eyes trailed from him to Evangelica then settled on the picture of himself on her desk.
A slow satisfied smirk settled on his face and Artemis was ready to kill. He could so easily shift and with one swipe of his paw, he’d drag his nails down the alphas face, causing serious damage.
The young alpha would fall to his knees and Artemis would spring for his jugular, he’d settled back on his haunches and watched his opponent bleed out all over Angel’s floor.
Satisfaction filled him as the image in his mind was vivid and could easily be so real.
“Alpha Elijah is there something we can help you with?”
Angel’s voice brought him back to reality. He blinked and stared at the young alpha.
“Actually Eva” a rumble fell from his lips as the male used her nickname, as far as Artemis was concerned he wasn’t permitted to call her anything other than her birth name. “If I might have a word with Alpha Steele I’d greatly appreciate it”
The polite words didn’t cover the aggressiveness the male was still permitting.
Angel rubbed her hand along his back, “It’s up to you” she said turning to pull out a suitcase from beneath her bed.
Artemis gave a brief nod and followed the alpha out of the room. The guardians stood on either side of her door, watching and listening as various pack members strained to find out what was going on.
He eyed Marissa, Elijah’s mate, who stood outside the door unable to enter. He’d given the guardians specific orders. She was not allowed near Angel. He knew the social climbing Luna was out for blood. Specifically Evangelicas blood and he’d do anything to prevent her from drawing it.
His wolf shined through his eyes, coming to the forefront of his mind as he gave a warning and a quick snap of his teeth in her direction. He wouldn’t tolerate her nonsense.
She didn’t meet his gaze and she didn’t say a thing.
She wanted to play as if she were meek.
He followed the young alpha through the halls, completely unimpressed at the small quarters in which he gave his pack mates rooms to live.
They entered a room far away from the rest. As Artemis stepped foot into the large office, he could feel the alphas eyes on him. He was expecting a surprised wondrous reaction.
He didn’t give him one. He scanned the room looking unimpressed. It only served to piss the young alpha off further.
“Take a seat” he said referring to one of the two black leather chairs in front of the large mahogany desk. Alpha Elijah strode around it, taking a seat in his high back leather office chair.
He looked too young to be sitting there. Like a child playing make believe.
Artemis shoved his hands into his pockets and leaned against the wall facing him, “What did you want to discuss or were you simply trying to lure me away from Evangelica long enough for your mate to do some damage” he said nonchalantly.
He wasn’t worried, the guardians would protect her at all costs. After they witnessed how he reacted to her, they’d have no problem sparing their life for hers.
Alpha Elijah glared at him, his wolf shining through in golden flecks, “I would never hurt her”
Artemis shrugged, he didn’t believe him but that was besides the point, “Your... other mate would. In fact, I believe she’d be happy to dispose of her as she obviously sees her as a threat to her bond to you” he said off handedly, “although I can’t figure out exactly why she would feel threatened in that way unless you’ve given her cause to”
He was digging for information, they both knew it.
Leaning back in his chair, the young alpha surveyed him, the males body was anything but relaxed. The tension between the two only fueled the fact that two alphas were placed in a small room together, their dominance crashing. The air was thick and fueled with aggression.
His wolf was on edge, didn’t like that he had a potential threat and challenger before him.
Alphas were not meant to reside, even for a few minutes, in the same area. Their property was where each and every alpha reigned, to have another dominant wolf step onto that territory that wasn’t theirs was cause for a challenge.
“That’s none of your concern. What goes on behind closed doors between myself and my mate belongs to us.”
Artemis tried to remain relaxed and indifferent, he was having a terrible time at it. Killing this young pup would be all too easy. “If it concerns my...pack member then it does concern me” he said choosing his words carefully. He wasn’t going to announce his intentions of making Angel his mate.
Striding to his feet, the young alpha came around the desk planting himself in front of it. He leaned back on his hands, his eyes ever so watchful. He wasn’t a stupid wolf, he was simply an inexperienced one. Which was where he’d be making all his mistakes.
Letting out a snarl he snapped at him, his wolf coming to a stand at the disrespect, “It’s Alpha Steele to you pup. In the future, I expect to be addressed as such or I will put you down”
He blanched but continued as if Artemis hadn’t spoken, “I have to approve of Eva’s transfer. Under these circumstances, I’m denying the transfer. I won’t let her leave and now that she’s on my soil and my land she is there for mine and can not leave”
Artemis let out a mighty spine curling roar and launched himself at the young alpha. Elijah didn’t have time to react, a hard head snapping punch was thrown that had his legs caving, his body sagged and clutched at the desk behind him to steady himself.
Artemis wasted no time, he grabbed Elijah but the collar of his shirt yanking him around until his back was to Artemis’s front. He brought his hands up, wrapping them around the young alphas head, ready to snap his neck.
His wolf was howling in victory, human and animal both wanted blood. His blood. They wouldn’t settle for less.
Artemis had passed off the disrespectfulness, he’d handled that well, Angel would be pleased.
The young alpha thought to keep him from his soon to be mate?! Never.
Artemis let out a howl and tightened his grip ready to kill him.
The doors to the office slammed opened, Artemis’s eyes blazed as he took in the new threats.