Though I never saw him after that night, I knew he was around. Watching my every move. I couldn’t concentrate for days because I was so paranoid he was in the tree judging me or getting ready for me to slip. But, what if I was JUST being paranoid. There was no real evidence that he was around, just felt like I could feel his anger or even sadness from the edge of borderline powder. Every night, I would stand on the edge of the borderline and just look out into the darkness, hoping he would show his face. “Here.” I snapped out of my thoughts and found a cup of hot chocolate steaming in front of me. I gripped the cup and mumbled a little thank you, “My dear, why do you wait for him?” I gazed at her shocked but quickly covered it with confusion. “Wait for who Merrill?” I played dumb but she saw right through it, like a seeing through a very clear glass window. “I heard your little meetup. So you know exactly who I’m talking about.” She scolded lightly.
I huffed and screwed up my face, I was defeated. “You know, it’s difficult to hide things from you.” I laughed as I turned back to the darkness. “I try my best.” She hummed as she drank her hot drink. “To be honest Merrill, I don’t know. I feel his eyes on me 24/7 but I’m not sure if he’s even here. I think I stand here hoping he would show himself and tell me that it’s okay and everything can go back to normal.” Silence surrounded us, consuming the very air we breathed. Merrill began humming an old lullaby as we just stood looking at the darkness. “This truly is an interesting game indeed.” She disappeared back to the cottage, I stared down at my cold chocolate. I watched as the foam on top dissolved in, I tipped the cold liquid onto the ground and scowled. “What a waste.” I complained and joined Merrill back into the cottage, but not before taking one last look. There stood those glowing deep blue eyes under a large oak tree, the deep blue eyes I missed so dearly. I smiled and whispered “Goodnight.” and went back inside.
Through that night I was thinking and came across a wandering thought at the back of my mind, ‘I had met my mate.’ At some point at that ball I had met my mate and I was oblivious, but here I was thinking about Mason. Something wasn’t right here and I knew exactly what it was, Mason was in my head. That had to be it, he was trying to distract me from the one person I’m meant to be with. I decided that night I was going to leave and go back home. I needed to find my mate before Mason was embedded in my brain like a tick on a dog’s nose. I leaped out of the makeshift bed and began packing my stuff up, I was ready to go home. After I slammed my bag onto the floor, I heard a voice. “What’s going on out here?” Merrill came out of her bedroom all teary eyed and looked at me confused. “I’m going home, I don’t want to put you in danger any longer than I have.” I stated as I continued to pack my things, Merrill still looked confused and slightly hurt. She attempted many things to prevent me from going but one thing put me over the edge, “Emily, you can’t leave me! YOU CAN’T TAKE MY CHILD FROM ME!” I paused and turned to her, I was angry, speechless and...sad at this panicked woman’s attempts to make us stay. “Merrill.” I paused again and looked at her eyes, she held so much pain. “I’m sorry that you lost Iris to the divine beings and I’m sorry she’s attached to me. But, We NEED to leave. I need to get back and stop a demon from destroying everything we know and love. So if you want to keep seeing Iris, you need to let go right now. She will return, I promise you.” Merrill didn’t look convinced as tears cascaded down her ancient cheeks, I sighed.
“I...I...If not, you may have my first child.” I knew what I had said was the stupidest thing and I will forever regret my decision but an eye for an eye must be honored one way or another.
Merrill and Iris were taken back by my promise, I felt sick to my stomach but it just meant that if there was a way to hurt or kill a divine being then I should have had more of an incentive to protect Iris as much as I could. I held out my hand towards Merrill and insisted she took it, “By the power of all the Gods and Goddesses, I promise to protect Iris and bring her home. But if I fail to do so, Merrill Jinx may have my first child to bring up as if it was her own.” Tears dripped down our cheeks as I felt the bond wrap around our hands and promise being set in stone. Once it was done, we calmed down and I finished packing just in time for the sun to rise.
We all stood on the edge of the powder just looking at the town ahead, “I guess this is goodbye.” Merrill spoke, Iris grappled her into a hug and cried. “But only for now.” Iris finished. Iris kissed her forehead and pulled away to my side, Merrill looked to me and smiled. “Good luck Emily. May the Divines be with you.” With that me and Iris took our first steps back towards the danger, we didn’t look back as we walked and walked and walked. It took us a few hours to get back to the pack and once we reached the front door I stopped, I was feeling the regret and uncertainty. “Do you think this is a good idea?” I whispered to iris, she nodded emotionlessly as she unmanifested herself. ‘We can’t hide forever.’ She pushed me forwards and rang the doorbell. The door swung open and revealed Harlow, he was dumbfounded by my presence and quickly tackled me into a tight hug. “I have missed you so much!” He beamed while I let out a breathless laugh. Once he realised I was suffocating he let go and apologized non stop, “It’s alright brother. Anyways, I have missed you too. It’s been too long.” I lowered my tone and eyes as I stared at the ground, ashamed of abandoning my family with Mason.
“You best come in, Mother and Father have been worried sick.” He spoke, I looked at him confused. “Why were they worried? They knew where I was.” Harlow gave a side glance with the same amount of confusion as I had. “Strange they didn’t say anything to me.” I nodded agreeing with him as I got lost in my thoughts, ‘Why didn’t they say anything?’ Iris just shrugged her shoulders, she only knew as much as I did. I could smell my parents from just around the corner as we walked further into the house, and there they stood on the sofa planning what looks to be some sort of war zone. “Emily!” My father also tackled me into a hug but it wasn’t so tight, he looked nothing like Harlow or my mother; His hair was much grayer and his skin was sunken in, it looked like he had no sleep or food. “Father you look ill. Are you alright?” My mother quickly got up and placed a hand on my father’s shoulder, they shared a quick look before dismissing what I said. “Are you hungry? Thirsty? Tired perhaps?” My father questioned as he looked at my state, I looked fine by the way. “Don’t dodge my question.” I growled a little, they looked at me almost scared. “It’s nothing you should worry your little head about.” He patted my head and slowly walked back towards the sofa, I stared at Harlow trying to get some answers out of him but he just mouthed ‘drop it.’ I, unwillingly, dismissed my question just like them and began catching up with them.
I had learnt that Mason went back with his family, or so they say, and my family were supposed to notify him when I arrived but my mother wanted to give it a week before she told him, she called it ‘family time’ but me and her knew it wasn’t. During that week I spent much more time with my Family and even began bonding more with my father, it was nice to just be able to relax and not worry about Mason being nearby. Well, I say that, but during the day that was the way; however, at night was another story. Every night I would have dreams of him and only him, it was like once the moon came out he was surrounding me. I hated how much I thought about him and the want for him everytime the sun fell and the moon rose, it was driving me insane. I had to find my mate but the only problem was I couldn’t remember who I spoke to that night at the ball, everytime I tried to think about it I just got a blur. I knew my mother had mentioned it on her first visit but I couldn’t for the life of me remember who the hell it was, it’s like something doesn’t want me to remember.
“Mother.” I said while she cooked breakfast, she mumbled a yes and gave me part of her attention but not too much. “Can you remember who I was talking to before I left the ball?” She turned off the stove and turned to face me, “I have no clue, it could have been anyone. Why do you ask?” I stared at her and thought for a moment, was it the best idea to tell her the truth? I mentally shrugged and opened my mouth to speak. “A few weeks ago Mason followed you and attacked me. He spoke about how pissed he was that I found my mate at the ball, since then I haven’t been able to recall who I had spoken to that night. It’s all a blur.” My mother was stunned and shocked at how casual I was acting. She snapped out of her state and gripped onto my shoulders, “Why didn’t you say anything?!”
“He might have hurt you if I told you, it’s bad enough that you found so much on your own.” I whispered angrily, she quickly let go of me once she saw the anger flash in my eyes. “I get that but what about the possible meeting your mate thing? It’s a very important thing Emily” My mother lost her fearful expression and got a little excited. “I can’t believe my baby has met her mate!” She squealed, I wrapped my hands around her mouth as I studied the room around us. “It’s all well and good that I have found them but I can’t fucking remember them. Either he’s messing with my memories or someone else is. I need to find my mate and quickly, it may be able to kick him out of my head.” We pulled each other close and tried to come up with a plan that would actually work.
My mother and I flopped on the bed unsure what to do, we tried to think of a plan where Mason doesn’t end up hurting someone but it was next to impossible. Knock! Knock! A small maid popped his head through and said, “Excuse me but Luna Opal and Emily, the Alpha wishes for your presence in the office.” We nodded and got off my bed, and walked towards the door. The walk was silent as we were buried by our own thoughts, it was that bad that I walked into the office door. “Come in!” My father’s alpha voice boomed and convinced my body to cower a little as I opened the door, my mother walked in as I trailed behind. My brother stood in front of his desk looking relaxed and laid back, his attitude kicked off all the fear my father’s alpha voice gave me. “Now that you are all present we will be having very important guests arriving today for a meeting. Emily and Harlow, I want you two on your best behaviour. Especially you Emily, I don’t want you to be too distracted with Mason also arriving sometime today as well.” My face dropped and dripped all the happiness I had left, ‘The week was over already?’
‘I guess so.’ Iris was lost for more words as she lost track of time as well. “I-I will try my hardest father.” I stammered, I had no clue how I was going to deal with this. It was a real hard stomp to my brain. “That’s my girl. Now! Harlow is your mate ready…” I droned out on the rest of the meeting as I tried to configure a plan. I wished and hoped something would happen right now, like a big ball of silver would just crush me right now or the ground would just swallow me whole. “Emily?” I flickered back to reality and met my father’s eyes. “The meeting’s over. You can go.” My eyes grazed around the room and he was indeed right. “Sorry father I was just daydreaming.” I tried to cover but he didn’t look convinced, he looked more suspicious. “Is there something you want to say? You know you can talk to me, right?”
“NO. I mean...yes I know I can talk to you but there is nothing I want to talk about, everything is fine.” I stumbled but again he didn’t look convinced, he quickly dropped it though and walked away. ‘That was kind of weird.’ Iris spoke with her furrowed eyebrows, I agreed with her and walked out of the, now, empty room. “Maybe a long shower will fix my thoughts.”
He was here in my room as I stood with a towel wrapped rather loosely around me, we both stood embarrassed and speechless. “I...er…” Mason faced his back to me, giving me the chance to grab my clothes from my bed. “It’s nice to see you Emily. Last time we spoke we-” I slammed the bathroom door shut with a little snarl and changed, I was too embarrassed and angry to talk to that demon right now. I was changed and dried by the time I left the bathroom but I didn’t dare acknowledge the demon sat on my bed, looking rather bitter. “Can you just let me speak?!” He snapped, I snickered sourly as I finally looked at him. “I don’t even understand how you think I will keep putting up with this stupid game. I’m done being your ‘mate’, I don’t care about you.” I snarled again.
“Then how come you ran after me and waited for me to return? Huh?” I gazed away from him as my anger clawed at my throat, the words I wanted to say. “How about when I touched you the way I did? I didn’t even have to get in your brain to make you feel something.” By this he was up on his feet trying to grasp my attention. “Look at me Emily.” I ignored him and walked towards my window. “Now!” My eyes latched onto his own, it was like my heart was in control. His hands had dared to touch my face and make me feel safe, what was wrong with me? “Let go of me.” I snapped but, as I expected, he didn’t. “I’m warning you Mason, let go of me. I do not love you nor will I ever.” I spat with so much venom that it actually hurt him a little. Mason shrugged it off and plastered a little smirk, “Oh baby, you will and I won’t even have to do anything. You are mine and the prince will not take what’s mine.” Then his shock took over as he realised what he had said, ‘The Prince?’ Me and Iris questioned together.
“Are you saying that the prince is my mate?” I questioned as I felt my knees go weak, this could not have been possible. “Shit.” He cursed. I took this chance to kick him to the floor and run to the other side of the room, “Thanks asshole. I will be able to finally get rid of you!” I cheered as I tried to exit the room but I was slammed back on to my bed, my hands were pulled over my head as Mason pressed his chest against mine. His eyes were a very familiar Plum shade, “You will never get rid of me and don’t worry about little princy boy, you won’t even be able to remember that I even said anything. Things will be different.” Black splodges covered my vision as my mind felt like it was being twisted in all directions, I screamed and pulled. “Shush my love just sleep now. It will all be okay.” I was consumed by the darkness and his sickening smile.