Cassia yawned and stretched, being careful not to hurt her ankle. She realised mid stretch that Garett was not next to her. She felt the bed next to her. It was cold so he had been up for awhile. She remained lying on the bed thinking about the events of last night.
She realised she didn't feel upset or shaken about Jane. She was just relieved that the people she cared for were ok; Garett, Leila and her unborn baby, Brax and Malena.
Music floated from downstairs and singing that could only be described as nails in a chalk board.
Well I guess he had to have one flaw!
Cassia put on her her splint and made her way down stairs. The smell of bacon growing stronger with each step. She walked into the kitchen to see a topless Garett dancing and singing to music whilst cooking. He was clearly a messy cook. Pots and pans littered every side.
"Wow! You are one messy bugger!" Garett turned and smiled at her.
"It's not mess. It's creative chaos! Sit. I've made a full English breakfast for you." Cassia took a seat at the breakfast bar and had a dip of coffee.
"What's this aid of?"
"I wanted to make sure you were OK after last night and I figured what better way to make a self confessed foodie a big ass breakfast!" Garett smiled at her but she could see he was nervous in case she was going to run a mile.
"It scared me but hasn't scared me off. I'm grateful for you all protecting me. You all saved my life"
"what happened?" he asked as he placed a large plate of food infront of her.
"Malena invited Jane to come which was fine. I didn't know much about her. She barely spoke to me when I first met her and she didn't speak again last night. Until Leila asked how our meal was and I told them we kissed and spoke about mating. She just blew like a bottle of pop. Turned the table over and dived on top of me screaming I wasn't good enough. Malena got her off me and Leila stood infront of me. That's pretty much when you and Brax walked in." Cassia toyed with the fork in her left hand as she reached for her coffee with her right to take a sip.
Garett remained quiet. Looking down at his plate.
"I'm OK. The rug and floor are OK. Smile and eat or your cooking will go to waste."
They ate in silence. Once finished, Garett started to clean. Cassia started standing to help but he put his hand out and refilled her mug.
"No, no. Sit and enjoy your coffee. It's my mess I don't mind doing it. So err.... I have to ask. You remember what you said before you fell asleep?" he started to fill the sink with his back to her.
"What? Oh my god! You heard that? I thought you were asleep and I was half asleep and it just slipped out. Holy fuck! I'm so embarrassed. I can't believe you wasn't asleep!" Cassia groaned and put her head on the table. She wanted the earth to swallow her up.
"I've already fallen for you." Cassia slowly looked up to find Garett leaning against the counter watching her intensely. Waiting for a response.
"That's the mate thing. You have no choice."
"I don't mean my wolf. I mean me. The human part of me. I have fallen in love with you. I've fallen in love with your smile, your laugh. Your sense of humor. Just you."
Cassia stared at him dumbfounded. She literally had no words. Instead as fight or flight took over, she stood up, ran upstairs and into the bathroom. She was shaking with adrenaline. She croutched to the floor and held onto the bath.
He has fallen in love with me. Me as a person. Not just because fate told him I was perfect for him. He loves me.
Suddenly the room started spinning and it was difficult to catch her breath. Cassia closed her eyes and slowly controlled her breathing.
In.... One.... Two.... Three. Hold. Out.... One.... Two..... Three.
Cassia felt her heart rate slow as she breathed in through her nose and out through her mouth. She managed to calm her heart and breathing. She hadn't noticed until now that Garett had joined her on the floor and was hugging her. Soothing her.
"You're safe. You're OK." he whispered in her ear. She closed her eyes and leaned back on him allowing herself to feel safe in his arms.
"I'm OK. I just need a few minutes to regroup I think. I will come down when I'm done?" Garett nodded and left her in the bathroom. She sat on the tiled floor for a few minuted to catch her breath before entering the shower.
She got dressed, brushed her teeth and tied her into a messy bun. She decided to wear denim shorts and a red cami top. She looked at herself in the bathroom mirror, took a deep breath and headed back towards the kitchen.
Garett sat at the breakfast bar. Still topless nursing a cup of coffee. Cassia sat next to him and poured a cup of coffee. Garett didn't look up. Cassia knew he couldn't. She was making him feel this way. She was turning his world upside down. She felt guilty and unworthy of his love for her.
"I'm really putting you through the ringer. Garett I am so sorry for making you sad. I don't feel worthy of your love. I don't understand why I have a second chance of a happy life and I am so scared it will be taken away again. I couldn't survive another loss. Especially you. My feelings for you are growing every day and I have a voice in the back of my mind telling me its too good to be true and I don't deserve a second chance of happiness because I couldn't make the first work." tears fell as Cassia spoke. She'd had these feelings since the middle of her first week here but she bottled them up hoping they would go away. As her feelings were growing for this man, the voice was getting stronger telling her she didn't deserve it.
"I'm not sad. I'm in pain. Not for myself but for you. I had an incling that your scared. I can see it in your eyes when we have our little moments. You deserve every opportunity that comes your way. If anything, you deserve to happy more than anyone because of what you have been through." Garett stood up and hugged her close to his chest. He buried his face into her hair. She could sense him inhaling her scent and he moaned as he breathed out.
"The wounds are gone." she said absent-mindedly as she stroked her finger across his chest. He chuckled as her pulled away slightly to kiss he lips.
"I told you they would. How about a date day today. Get out of the house and away from the pack. Go an be a normal young couple on a date?"
"That sounds perfect. Do I have to get changed? Or is this OK."
"It's OK. I will get ready and then we can go." Cassia remained at the breakfast bar and wondered where they would go. It would be nice to feel carefree for a day and just have a laugh.
Garett came down in black jeans, white t shirt and leather jacket. Cassia grabbed her leather jacket from the hall and they made their way to the truck.
"So where are we going?"
"You will see." Garett smiled at her and turned on the radio.
They drove for an hour to get to their destination; an aquarium.
"Oh I love these places! I love the sea. You know what my favourite animals are? Sharks. They are amazing! I love them!" Cassia could feel her excitement bubble over as she spoke. Garett laughed at her and offered his hand out to her as they walked towards the entrance. She accepted it gratefully.
" I love the sea too. I don't know how I feel about sharks though."
They walked into the aquarium after paying and made their way slowly round the fascinating creatures. Cassia felt happy and elated. Aquariums has always been her happy place. She loved them and always wanted to work near the sea or in an aquarium.
After awhile, cassia started limping and they sat on a bench near the tunnel going through the big tank that housed stingrays, colourful fish and sharks. The bench faced a large window to see in the tank.
"I can feel you watching me you know." Cassia smiled and turned to Garett. She was right, he was watching her. Garett smiled in return.
"I don't think I've seen you smile this much in two weeks."
"Thank you for this. I think you needed this just as much as i did." Cassia moved closer to his and held his hand.
"To be honest, I thought I would wake up this morning to find you would have left. Or at least tell me to stay the fuck away from you. I really had prepared myself so when I woke and you were there, I was happy. Obviously. Hence the bad singing. When I told you I had fallen in love with and and it caused you to have a panic attack. I didn't know what to think. I'm glad you explained why you had it. You cannot imagine the relief I felt!"
They sat and watched the sea creatures pass them in the window still holding hands. After a few minutes, they continued their walk through the tunnel and the fish and sharks swim over them. Cassia was so excited she kept grabbing onto Garett and telling him the names of each creature and their abilities.
"Did you know that great whites can smell one drop of blood in 25 gallons of water? I'm talking like a pin prick of blood. Their sense of smell is so acute that they sense a small amount over three mile radius. Did you also know that sharks haven't evolved and have been around for over 450 million years?"
"You are obsessed! But no I didn't and that's pretty cool! How do you know so much about them?"
"After I had Max I started studying marine biology at University. I completed a shark welfare course off the coast of Africa for six weeks where we studied their behaviour and numbers. I completed my course and done a scuba diving course with the hope of getting a job in an aquarium and progress from there." Cassia spoke as they walked to the truck.
" Wow! That's amazing! You are amazing! I can't believe I am in love with someone so intelligent, caring and goddamn sexy! If you leave me, at least I can say that my mate was perfect." Garett turned to her and gave her a quick kiss. He started to pull away when Cassia pulled him back into a passionate embrace. They pulled away breathless.
"Fuck what do you do to me?" Cassia breathed. Garett raised and eyebrow.
"You will have to tell me over dinner. Do you like sea food?"
They entered what looked like a run down shack at the harbour. Once inside the shack turned into a beautiful sea side restaurant. Low hanging lights, decor of blue and white. A bar on the left with an array of bottles. To the right double doors opened into the harbour where more tabled sat. The server headed them this way. Outside the tables lined the harbor barrier where fair light encircled the wooden bars. It was simple but beautiful.
Garett pulled a seat out for Cassia and she gratefully sat down. The server arrived with water for out table. A pretty woman with blond hair.
"Hey guys. I'm Marie and I'm your server today. Here are the menus and a drinks menu too. We have a lobster thermadore on our specials today. I will give you a little time to have a look." she smiled at the two of them and seemed to bow her head towards Garett.
Hm. How strange to bow.
"She is a wolf. That's why she bowed. She recognised I am an alpha." Cassia looked at him open mouthed.
"How in the hell did you know that's what I was thinking?"
"I saw the little frown on you face when she bowed. I'm getting used to your little tells. So. What do you like the look of? I think I may go for the special."
"oooh... I think I'm going to have the Mediterranean sea bass."
Marie came back and took the food and drink order and Cassia and Garett holding hands across the table. She realised she didn't know much about him.
"So I know your favourite colour and favourite meal. I know you are kind and like looking after people. But I don't know much else. Tell me more." she pressed him.
"OK. We'll my full name is Garett Monroe. I'm half Italian on my mums side. I love being outdoors and building. I love Adam Sandler films. I hate waiting for things, I'm so impatient. I loved spending time with my family. Malena and Leo have me around alot and I feel close them and their kids. Brax and Lsila are like my family too so I don't feel lonely as such. I do feel there is something missing in my life. I don't really know what else to say. What about you?"
"Cassia Graham. My dad was Scottish. My clan is Graham of Montrose. We even have our own tartan. I love being outdoors too and swimming. I love scuba driving. I hate being bored and having nothing to do. I love to read. I used to feel very sad all the time. Over the last two weeks I feel I've grown up a lot. I've learned to forgive myself and not to be judgemental towards others. Before you and the pack I really believed wolves were all the same. You have made me see how wrong I was. I am learning to love myself again and see I am worthy of finding happiness again."
The air between them started to charge and sparks started tingling Cassia's skin. Garett eyes seemed to go darker. Cassia's heartbreak quickened.
"Oh shit! Erm.... I am so sorry. I have your food?" Marie and Cassia both went bright red in embaressment. Marie placed the plates down and smiled at the pair. Bowed and walked away.
"She bowed to you because she noted the mate pull between us. It's so strong Cassia. I've never known anything like it before."
The food was amazing! Cassia sat back in her chair and was about to speak when Garett's eyes glazed over.
"Leon mind linked. Something is wrong with Malena. We need to go." Garett paid for the meal despite Cassia offering and they drove to Malena and Leon's at speed.