Waiting in Darkness

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Twenty five | Syn

My mate drove me crazy. His teasing touches, suggestive words but innocent face, and sweet actions were making it impossible for me to stay mad at him. I was tempted to give in a hundred times a day but I always manage to remain resilient by reminding myself that Terrin would eventually tire of this and give up. This is better for both of us.

Lune, how many times did I said that? Several hundred at least. But even I was struggling to believe it, never mind trying to convince Terrin. If anything, I was starting to agree with him. We should just put it behind us and move on. Stop making ourselves suffer and just be happy.

Be happy.

As much as I hated to admit it, Terrin's antics made me happy. Every light touch sent a thrill through me. Every one of his cheesy lines that were full of crap made me feel warm. So I let him brush against me, let him spout romantic nonsense.

When he saw I had stopped fighting against him he grew bolder. Terrin was relentless, whenever I ignored him or rejected him he just came back ten times stronger. His fingers changed into lips, replacing casual brushes with quick pecks. My personal space became virtually nonexistent. Worst of all, he stopped hiding his arousal, in fact he made it apparent. The scent of his pheromones always attacking me as he looked at me with dark hooded eyes nearly made me explode.

It simply wasn't fair. How was I ever supposed to resist that? He acted as though nothing was wrong, as if we had always been such attentive and sweet lovers.

How could I prevail when he jumped on my back when I made us sandwiches – he obviously wasn't going anywhere and I wasn't going to let him starve – and cling to me, completely plastering himself against me?

As if that wasn't difficult enough, he'd then nip my ear and whisper something like, "you're my favorite snack." I was supposed to stand a chance against that?

Or when he would cuddle into me, wrapping his limbs around me like a snake, hugging my back while complaining about the cold draft of the cave. I'd try to wrestle him off but he'd only constrict around me, squeezing tighter and tighter until I eventually gave in. He would then kiss my shoulder, nuzzle my skin, whisper in my ear. Yeah, sleep wasn't a thing for me anymore.

Why?

Why was he doing this to me? He made me weak, it was almost impossible for me to say no to him.

'What about Heidi?' I kept asking myself. He marked her too.

Yes, but he was here with me right? That made the argument null.

I simply couldn't win. I stopped resisting altogether, knowing it was futile

So I stop trying to. I let him have his way. None of us said anything when I began initiating touches, casually grabbing his waist with one hand while I filled my canteen as he washed the dishes. Or pecking the top of his head when I walked past him.

Knowing I was caving in, Terrin switched from being the big spoon to the little spoon and instead moved to my front, taking my arms and banding them across his chest. He'd then hold them there so I couldn't draw away. I cuddled him back, wrapping my arms around him and drawing him closer, both of us more satisfied with the better fit of this position.

Everything just became so natural between us as we adjusted to our new life in the cave.

Terrin would sometimes come hunting with me, his competitive nature always shining through as we chased down our hunt. The little cheater would spook my prey before I could pounce, so self-satisfied to have caught more than me. He would gloat, prancing around me, claiming to be the better hunter in both skins as I had tried my hand at trapping only to find my mischievous mate had tampered with my traps.

Of course I'd been annoyed at first, but when he laughed his ass off at my muttered curses every time I failed, I found myself uncaring he had spoiled my hunt. To just see him smile so broadly and brightly, the fact that he even could look at me that way after what I had done to him made it worth it.

The scars on the side of his head would always serve as a reminder. I was grateful he was often dressed in a shirt as it kept me from having to look at the mangled mess of his back. He would carry those scars forever, but so would I. Perhaps a visual reminder would keep us from making such a mistake again.

So I let him have his fun at my expense, just so I could hear his laugh and watch his lips pull up to reveal his teeth. And as his eyes would look just at me as if I was his whole world and that laughter died to something deeper, that smile softening, I would glance over his shoulder to see the twin wolves that watched from a distance. They always left silently after I spotted them, no doubt bringing back their findings to their alpha – our alpha. It would soon be time to return home.

But not yet, Terrin and I weren't ready.

As the days pressed on Terrin and I healed together, used each other to heal as mates should. I loved my werewolf and I knew he loved me as well, but true to his word he never said those words again, he wouldn't as long as I kept them locked inside my own mouth.

He would tease me though, saying all of the things he loved about me but never specifically saying it was me he loved. I was so close to snapping, knowing I would very soon.

And when that day came I was ready. Today would be our last at the cave but I would make it memorable. I took us to the hot springs inviting my mate into the water with me. Of course the little devil made a show of removing his clothes. You would never have been able to tell that at one point the thought of being naked before me mortified him.

My beautiful mate proudly flaunted all he had right into the water, not self conscious of his scars in the least. They made me more nervous than him.

I swallowed thickly, as my eyes followed him through the water and right over to me only to turn at the last second and then begin to swim leisurely through the small spring. Of course he took every opportunity to tease me knowing he had my full undivided attention.

When I'd had enough I grabbed his foot and pulled him through the water. Catching him by surprise he gasped and sputtered as his head went under the water before he forced it back up. He cursed at me but I just chuckled and pulled him into my lap. I delicately grazed the gashes across his skull, the lines fitting perfectly with the trails of my fingers.

My breath shuddered and my hand shook before I had fully traced the lines.

I had nearly killed him.

I could have killed my mate.

Terrin grabbed my wrist, gazing at my stricken face with knowing eyes. He slowly pulled my hand down, turning my palm out and placing a lingering kiss there. "It's alright Syn. We both left scars on each other," he said gently, caressing a hand down my face, "mine just happen to be more visible."

A croaked sob left my throat but the werewolf only shushed me, pulling my face into his chest as he cooed and rocked us gently.

"I'm sorry," I said for the first time, apologizing for my actions.

"Me too," Terrin replied.

"I love you," I cried.

My mate leaned back, lifting my chin with a finger. He made a show of examining me, looking me up and down before his fingers traced my lips and pulled at the corners. "I love your smile," he said laughing as my brows furrowed. That wasn't the response I wanted. Terrin's fingers smoothed across my brows, "especially when you try your hardest not to." His thumbs brushed back over my brow bone, "I love how these furrow when you try to look intimidating and serious." His hands continued their exploration, tracing the contours of my face. "I love your stubbornness, even if it makes you a pain in the ass," I growled and nipped at the finger he pushed against my lips. He laughed breathily and moved his hands down, pressing against my clavicle. "I love the sound of your silky voice," my mate looked at me with a spark of mischief, "even more so when it takes on that low husk when you're turned on." I barked out a laugh, getting a grin from him. He hummed, "mmm, yes, your laugh is ear candy. So delicious."

I leaned forward and pressed a quick kiss to his lips, unable to help myself. Terrin's hands lifted to my head, brushing through the shaved sides. "I love your cute little man bun," he admitted, breaking us apart. "Even though sometimes I'm tempted to give you a respectable haircut."

My hands on his waist began to move up the planes of his stomach.

My mate's eyes fluttered shut, his breath hitching, "I love the way your hands move across my body." My hands came up to cup his face and only then did his eyes peel open, with all the seriousness he possessed Terrin finished, "I love all the little things you do, even if you don't think I notice, but I do. I love your snuggles and kisses, I love how you try your best to provide for me while making sure I don't feel emasculated, just loved. I love even your faults, how you hide behind your stoic face when you are upset, how you try to distract me when I notice you are sad. I love everything about you Syn, because I love you."

"I love you," I repeated.

"I love you," he parroted and closed the distance between us.

And in that hot spring, on our last day at the cave we completed the bond, finishing our healing, and becoming one whole soul.

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