Chapter 4 - Getting Down to Business
< Aero >
My muscles tensed when I straightened up, standing proud and mighty with all my glory and nakedness. I looked at her. She was still not facing me, acting as if the pool’s bleach-white tiles were interesting.
I scoffed at her inattention.
All two hundred and twenty pounds of my weight submerged underwater when I entered the pool. I choose to sit on the lowest platform. My favorite spot. It had enough height for me to rest my head against the tiles and enough depth to soak the lower half of my body.
“Tell me, woman, what is my brother up to?” I asked, breaking the terse silence enveloping us.
She cautiously glanced towards my way and when she noticed my decent-enough look, she fully turned her face to me and answered, “He is hiring me to straighten you up. Desensitize you from your fear of women.”
“I don’t fear women. I hate them. Those two words are entirely different.” I gave her a cold look.
She rolled her eyes to the ceiling and mocked me, “Whatever.”
Had she been close to my reach, I would have drowned her that instant for being so insolent, but I reminded myself I wasn’t a murderer—well, except for the judgment of death I passed on to a capital offense in my kingdom—but that’s a different story. In addition, she could be useful in the future. Mayhap become the solution to my current problem. Elijah said so himself.
Damn him for putting this idea in my head.
“And in return for your services, what did he promise you?” I already knew the answer, but I asked anyway whilst I stared back at the dome ceiling.
“He promised to help me return to my own world.” As expected. What a typical thing about my brother.
“You mean the human realm?” I gazed back at her and saw the crease on her forehead.
“If you wish to call it that, then yes, the human realm.”
“I had the notion you were a human the first time we met. You reek of plainness and filth.”
“Why would you say that?” Her voice became defensive.
I barely contained myself from grinning. “The human realm is too ordinary I considered it to be garbage,” I stated right on the dot.
Her expression changed to that of strong determination, of patriotism, and of protectiveness. She must love her realm so much.
“Then I’m sorry to say this but you shouldn’t judge that quickly. You haven’t even been in my realm before,” she stated.
I flicked my wet finger mid-air and looked at her, feeling bored.
“Oh, I have, woman, before the realms were established. All magic creatures coexisted with each other, the human species included. Garbage is quite a fitting name to your realm actually because it is full of garbage.”
She seemed to second me there judging from the ashamed look on her face.
I grinned again, seeing that I was right.
She stayed silent for a moment, but then after a few seconds, remarked with her sharp eyes pointed at me. “For a king, you really know how to start a war.”
“Start a war?” I parroted, taken aback, “With the human realm?” And then, for the first time ever since my father died, I had the loudest belly-aching laugh that resounded all over the bath.
I saw her frown, but I didn’t care.
“That is the best damn joke I heard from a woman!” I stated once I stopped, mocking her deliberately.
“I have a name you know,” she said through clenched teeth. “I’m Serena McAllister.”
“I didn’t ask for your name and I have zero interest in using it,” I answered without hesitation.
That didn’t silence her.
“Your brother told me your kingdom is having problems getting a queen. I didn’t need to wonder why. Your atrocious attitude answers it.”
“Curb your tongue, woman, or else...” I straightened from my laid-back position and glared at her. My beast wanted to take charge and shift, surprise her with how monstrous I looked and maybe even scare her to death. As a human, for sure she hasn’t seen a real lycan before. Her reaction would be entertaining to watch. But, in the end, I managed to keep my beast at bay. “I’m a reasonable king. I forgive and forget, but push my buttons well and you’ll find another side of me that’s worth fearing.”
I stood up, not caring how my cock dangled in front of her and then walked out of the pool. It seemed I wouldn’t get a peaceful bath after all with her as my swimming companion.
“So, what happened?” Elijah waltzed inside my study as carefree as he always does. His princely white robe hit the marbled floor with a low-pitched sound as golden beads rubbed against each other.
I hated that sound. It always told me he only came to see me to share tales of his escapade with his mistresses.
I came to care for Elijah the moment he was born even though I knew we didn’t share the same father. Honestly, it was the only good my whore of a mother did in her life. She gave me a brother that I could care for and protect. But when Elijah came of age, it was evident enough we were different. He swooned over women, praised them, and loved them while I did the opposite.
“Don’t start with me, Elijah,” I groaned behind the map I was holding. “You know I am displeased with what you did.”
He pulled the map down and flashed a smile at me. I rewarded him a frown, shifted on my cushioned seat, and began signing papers. The tinted glass behind me reflected a rainbow color against my desk, telling me that the afternoon sun had now begun to set. It would be nighttime soon; meaning, I get to spend the rest of my evening either on the run outside the castle walls or on my cozy bed, pleasuring myself.
“Take it as my help, brother,” he answered, cutting me off from my thoughts. “I’m giving you an opportunity. Why not take it? If you use her, our problems will vanish in an instant.”
“She’s a human,” I pointed out, still looking at the papers.
“So what?” Elijah hit the sofa across my desk with a heavy sound. “She’s a woman. Father didn’t say you had to take a she-wolf as your bride. Plus, Serena will make a great luna. I’m sure of it.”
He looked at me and winked.
I frowned once more. No thanks to him, I am now stuck with her name in my head. I had honestly forgotten about it the moment she mentioned it to me this morning.
“You actually had the gall to make a deal with her,” I stated.
Putting down the pen, I sat back and touched my jaw with my knuckles. My patience was wearing thin and my knuckles were turning white due to the pointless dilemma I was in. I was itching to punch someone, maybe my brother would make for a good punching bag, or better yet, the mines southwest of my kingdom where its stones could withstand my claws.
“Hmm, judging from the fact that she’s still alive, it means that my plan is working,” he announced with a proud grin, not at all worried with incurring my wrath. “You are slowly desensitizing yourself with your hatred of women, brother. I’m so proud of you.”
I growled at him.
“That’s impossible, Elijah. My hatred for them runs deep. I’m just giving her the chance to live. She will return to her own world anyway. She won’t bother me long. You are going to help her return right?”
“Yes, of course.” He shifted on his seat and leaned forward towards me. “It’s a promise, although…I didn’t say ′when’ I will return her.” Then, I saw the mischievous look in his eyes. “Think of it, Aero, how much I’m already giving you the opportunity. If you use her, you keep your throne. Once your problem is solved, she can return to her world. You hate women, so you don’t need to keep her. You don’t even need to uhm...exercise your bedroom rights with her. Everybody is happy. End of story.”
Although I didn’t like his proposal, upon careful thought, I realized he actually made sense.
Damn him for being such a good royal advisor.
“I’m not proposing marriage to her,” I voiced out. Just thinking about showing a gesture of love—kneeling on one knee for example—gave me chills.
Elijah shook his head and waved his hands. “You don’t need to. Just make a deal with her, Aero. Treat it as a business. As the Alpha King, you’re skillful with that.”
Silently, I considered his words and yes, he was right again. It was a full proof plan that had zero complications. Surely, she’d take the bait, especially if I use her realm as my leverage.
A slow grin formed on my lips at the thought of fooling my ministers. This was going to be a piece of cake.
“When will you return to the manor?” Elijah asked, seeing already the acceptance on my face.
“Tomorrow morning after my run,” I answered.
“Ok, good. I’ll make the necessary preparations for your wedding then.” He stood up and smiled widely.