Now much more level-headed and less murderous, Artemis took one last dive before making her way to the shore. With every kick and paddle she made to escape the lake’s embrace, her agitation grew.
There was something amiss about the water, though she had no idea what gave it such a bewitching effect. She sure hoped that it lingered though because the thought of holding that infuriating man’s head under the surface until he stopped kicking was becoming more tempting with every waking moment.
Wrath’s pacing was so passionate that he was one step away from wearing a hole into the floor. But it was all he could do. His mind was so invested into the girl that it refused any distraction he offered. When a matching set of footsteps came from outdoors, his pacing became more violent and led him to a window that he subtly peeked out of.
He cursed; almost mad at the inanimate object for failing to lie to him and instead reveal the truth he was trying to run from: his mate.
She was back. And she came bearing gifts. From her left hand hung a stick she would likely beat him with.
He snarled and resumed stomping on the abused wood. Just what was it going to take for her to leave?
Artemis stood her ground in front of the shabby, almost creepy cabin. She gripped her stick tighter and called out a “hey!” that came from her gut- clear and strong. The single word carried a challenge with it. One Wrath caught onto.
She watched the door slide to the right. And then a bare foot, coal-black from the dirt it has traveled over, appeared from the dimly lit cabin.
Artemis felt the stick in her fist waver. Now a tight abdomen, broad shoulders, and arms layered with muscles were visible. All held up by staminated legs that could chase the toughest prey or enemy for hours. A body so masculine that anyone would consider he was on steroids. A skin so tan that it put doubt in the previous sentence. He must’ve worked years bypassing levels of fitness a normal person wouldn’t glance over to look like the predator that he was.
His expression was stoic, though this was no surprise. It presented a brief summary of his body: he was unmovable. But he was as sure-footed as she was angry. She wasn’t taking an inch away from where she stood without what she came for. Answers.
“I don’t give a fuck if you don’t understand. You’re going to listen to me,” Wrath heard. Contrary to what Artemis believed, he comprehended every word. What he couldn’t understand, however, was why she was now dragging her stick on the dirt.
When she was done scribbling on the ground, she glared at him and pointed at her work. “Which?”
The dirt was jagged with simple symbols. There was a triangle with multiple steps in it. The top step had two dots, below that two more, and the last step was littered with them. Above the peak of the triangle sat a moon crescent- the universal symbol for Werewolves. Wrath didn’t need English to understand that this was the chain of command in a traditional werewolf pack.
To ensure that she got her message across, she pointed to the top. “Alphas.”
She moved down. “Betas.”
Then reached the last step. “Pack.”
Her eyes moved from the dirt to the other scum in the forest. “Which one are you?” she asked.
Even if Wrath wanted to tell her his position, he wouldn’t have been able to. As a lycan, he didn’t have a place in any pack. He couldn’t even afford the title of a rogue.
Brown eyes searched each other. Artemis’ held a sparkle of hope while Wrath’s were as dead as he wished the rest of him was.
He had no plans to reply. But the way she was gripping that stick and devoting all of her attention to his assholish face made his lips slit and offer her a simple phase- “mluy zi” (a monster.)
Confusion knitted her eyebrows. Wrath was expecting this reaction. The words belonged to a nearly extinct language since its last native speaker was him.
He waited for her next move. She firstly blinked, equally shocked by the rich timbre of his voice and the fact that he actually spoke. Her eyes widened at the confirmation that the stubborn wall chipped a tad. He spoke.
When she realized she was staring at him, she opened her mouth. A clap of thunder cut her off, oddly perfectly timed. Their eyes broke apart from each other and moved to the sky which just minutes ago was clear. Artemis looked back at earth when she heard shuffling. Wrath had turned his back on her and was headed indoors.
“No!” she protested. This window of opportunity couldn’t close right after it cracked open. Her feet kicked at the dirt and her palms opened wide. If her wits weren’t clogged up with surprise, she would’ve never made such a foolish move. Goddess knows how this man would react to her touch.
Just as she began regretting her launch, Wrath evaded her attack by twisting his body sideways. Funnily, strangely, or both, her shoulders were the ones that ended up encased by warm hands. And that wasn’t all. The miniature bolts of lightning that proved their bond were terrorizing her body as well. They were so close that if she leaned back just a few inches, she would be molded against his chest.
She began to turn around. The rain started flowing then, but Wrath would need an entire ocean to clench the thirst he’d have for her rosy lips if she managed to face him. Without thinking twice, he gripped her upper arm, took the rest of the steps needed to reach his cabin all while pulling her along, and then released her when they reached the porch.
Artemis now stood with cover over her head but none for her heart which throbbed painfully when her mate stepped into the rain and ran away. Again.