I rush to my cabin after one of the most mind-blowing orgasms of my life. But what he told me, struck me with fear. Mate? Me? I didn’t want to be anyone’s mate. I ran away that night from the Blood Moon ball to avoid this exact situation. Being a mate meant being a slave to the man who “owned” me. I saw it with my own parents. My father, although a loving man, did not treat my mother as an equal in battles. She was a fighter like me, but after she found her mate, she was pushed into the housewife and pup-making business. I could see the fire in her eyes when she was alive that she could be so much more. But pack tradition had no room for woman-fighters.
I didn’t work this hard in my human world nor did I take this much of a risk to leave my pack to only come back and be Damien’s housewife I thought with distaste. What would his expectation of me be? Would he force me to come back to the pack, abandon my career, my friends?
I go to my cabin and take a long, hot shower to clear my head. I step out, wrap a towel over me and let my hair air dry as I pick up my phone to text my best friend Mara to come over and tell her to come to my room as I know I can’t be in the living room in case I run into him.
A few minutes later I hear a knock “Hey Lyssa, it’s Mara”
I open the door and give her the biggest hug ever. “I’ve missed you so much Mara! It’s been weeks now right? We are SO overdue for a girls hangout” as I squeeze the air out of her.
“So...what’s the deal with you and Damien?” Mara giggles at me. Although she’s about the same age as me, we can’t help but act like teens when we get together as a reminder of simpler times.
I tell her about my father’s pact and what happened at the lake, blushing when she was asking me all the excruciating details about how he was.
“Gooood.” I emphasize to her as I giggle at my own school-girl behavior. But then I get serious. “Mara, he called me his Mate! What am I supposed to do? I’ve worked so hard to escape that mentality and now it’s hitting me square in the face”. She looks hurt and I realize what I’m implying. “Mara, not all men are like your Alexei. He’s a rare diamond in the rough! You know the rumors as much as I do about Damien. I will not give up my career and my other life to be at home making pups for him while he battles it out. I’m a fighter and you know that. He can’t possibly want an equal with an ego as big as his.”
Mara takes a moment to look at me, and then speaks to me as if I’m the biggest idiot in the world. “Lyssa, your father is ill, the rogue attacks have become brutal at our territory, you meet the hottest guy I’ve ever seen since Alexei who gives you a mind-blowing orgasm and you run away? Did you even bother to tell him what your expectation is? You’re just assuming he’ll treat you like a housewife without even giving him a chance to explain? How old are you?”
I bite my lip. Ugh since when is my brain so frazzled? I’m an independent MBA-qualified corporate girl with a black-belt in BJJ and I’m feeling like a childish 12 year old that can’t handle her first crush. My face burns as I think about how our last encounter went, with me literally running away from him without so much as a thought. He must think I’m crazy.
Mara looks at me, gives me a hug and a kiss on the cheek before she tells me, “Lyssa, if you don’t go over there and take hold of the situation, I will kill you myself” as she squeezes my hand, she’s already off the bed ready to go.
She begins to stutter, “ughh Lyssa I know you have a lot on your plate right now, but I have some news”. I pause and look up. “I’m pregnant!”
“Ah Mara!! I am SO happy for you! No one in this world is more deserving than you to have this baby with Alexei. You both are going to be such incredible parents”. I’m beaming at her. She’s my best friend even though she’s my total opposite. She was never one to fight all out, welcomed the housewife role, but her and Alexei are perfect for each other since he’s a gentle soul too. While I know what I am, I can’t help feel a pang of jealousy to see her live such a relaxed, fulfilled life, while I’m always searching and pushing myself to be better and better, feeling like I’m never enough.
“How far along?” I ask her.
“2 months. I found out a few weeks back and was waiting to see you in person to tell you. I actually have an appointment with the pack Doctor now to make sure everything is ok”
“Go go! I’ll keep you updated on Damien. Don’t worry about me! I am so happy for you, I love you Mara! Keep me posted on the baby” I gush. I give her a big squeeze while I watch her leave my room.
I get up, change into a v-cut white t-shirt and long jeans, dry my hair, and do my makeup in a subtle fashion. I take one last look in the mirror before I step out to face my demon..ahem..Damien.
I dry myself off in the sun, seeing that it’s about 10AM now and head back to the cabin to get a dry pair of pants. I walk into the cabin and just as I enter, I see Lyssa coming down the steps from the bedroom. I wait for her to see me until her eyes reach out and capture mine as she breathes. She’s nervous, biting her lip, which turns me on more than I can imagine, as she slowly makes her way towards me. Her body is made for the clothes she’s wearing and I cannot believe I was just tasting her a few moments ago.
As she approaches, she stops and looks at me, finally releasing that lip of hers.
“I um..wanted to apologize for earlier. As you correctly know, I haven’t been in the werewolf community for almost a decade. I left the Blood Moon ball right before my 18th birthday to avoid exactly this”...as she waves her hand between us.
“Exactly what?” I respond back.
“This being a Mate thing” She says with distaste.
I pause briefly, wondering why she said Mate as if it were acid in her mouth. Her father seemed gentle enough, and I wasn’t aware of any major abuse between her parents, but I guess you never know what’s behind closed doors. But I’ve always been direct with people to help with communication so instead of thinking, I get to the point.
“Why? Why would you not want to find your mate? I mean, you don’t give me the overly romantic frilly girl vibe, but I mean, why do you find it so..distasteful?”
She pauses a moment, with some hesitation before breathing in to answer my question.
“Well...because I’m afraid to be owned by you”