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As much as I understand what is driving Harou and making him so crazy right now, it is also pissing me off. I want to spend every fucking second with her, and I can’t because I don’t trust him. He has never behaved like this before – but I guess we have never found our mate before either. Claim! He is nearly out of control with his need to claim her, which makes talking to her and getting her to trust us pretty much fucking impossible. Claim! Fucking asshole. I can explain it until I’m blue in the face, but he has one goal now and that is all he is able to focus on. Mate! Claim! Yeah. I get it.

Samuel says she has asked for me repeatedly over the past few days, and says I’m being an asshole not going to her. He hasn’t met his mate yet; he doesn’t understand this drive we’re feeling. So intense it is damn near painful. I want to go to her; I want to be with her. I also want to protect her from any and all threats – including myself.

Mate… His whine is pathetic, but one hundred percent accurate. Claim! This time the frustration in his snarl is almost as evident as his anger. And that right there is the problem. Claim! Goddamnit! She is being released from the hospital today, and who knows what her fucking plans are – because we haven’t been able to talk to her! Fuck you. Hmph. Harou’s verbal skills aren’t outstanding, but he has no problem getting some things across. Asshole.

I knock on her open hospital door, announcing our arrival. She is sitting in a chair by the window, staring at the woods beyond. The medical center is as much a hospital as any other, just a much smaller scale and in the middle of nowhere. It exists to serve our pack, so only those who need to know where it is, do. The nearest town is only about ten miles away if you go overland, but with the dangers of the forest – only weres would risk it. By road it takes almost seven hours over rough terrain, and you need to know where you’re going or you’re going to end up at the bottom – much like she already did once. Christ.

She turns to me, and immediately I’m struggling to contain Harou. Her long blonde hair is hanging loose, and it does reach her beautiful ass. Lick! I see her eyes darken when she sees us, but it isn’t fear that shades them. No. God, I can smell the change in her. She wants me. Us! Shut up, goddamnit! There is a shy smile on her face, and I sense that she wants to approach me Us! but after last time is hesitant to do so. Goddamnit Harou, I need you to let me do this! For both of us! Hate you he pouts but then goes silent. Thank God.

I slowly walk up to her, and gently brush some hair out of her eye. When she closes her eyes and leans into my hand, Harou crumbles to her feet inside my head. He has never surrendered to anyone before in our existence, yet he does it in a heartbeat with her. Mate… he purrs. Fucking purrs! We don’t purr – cats purr you ass. Mate… Gone is the aggressive asshole I’ve always known, loved and hated to be replaced by a playful companion rolling on his back as if asking for his belly to be rubbed. If only the world could see inside my head…

“What is your name, love?” I already know her name, but to explain the how and why of that would likely be off-putting. She’ll know more soon enough. I hope by keeping it ‘normal’ for as long as I can, she’ll remain calm for as long as possible. Maybe long enough for me to get her out of here before she loses her shit – because she will lose her shit. No way she won’t. No human has learned of our existence and not freaked out – the ones we tell are only told for a certain reason, and it has to be one hell of a good reason. The majority of the time it is when a werewolf finds his mate in a human, much like I have. We need to reveal our true selves to our mates – to try and hide that part of ourselves would be maddening and would likely eventually destroy us. The humans who find out by mistake, well… they don’t get the opportunity to pass on the news. We do an exceptionally good job of keeping ourselves hidden, so encounters are rare. None of us wants to be responsible for killing a human unless it is warranted, so we just stay away. Our human pack members can do any interacting that needs to be done, like shopping or business and legal transactions. It has worked for centuries, and it is everyone’s responsibility to maintain the status quo.

“My name is Emery. Emery Carlson.” Her eyes open and meet mine. Harou is no longer relaxed and feeling playful, his possessive urge is returning tenfold. Mate. Claim! Visions of our teeth in her shoulder as we claim her flash in my mind as Harou does his best to encourage me. Fuck off you horny hound!

“Hello Emery. My name is Nate Douglas.” She is still holding my hand against her cheek, and with natural colour back in her cheeks she is even more stunning. Christ. How did I get so lucky? We. We lucky. She closes her eyes again.

“Nathaniel…” my full name is hardly a whisper on her lips and without even knowing it, Emery made me hers that very second. Christ. Overwhelmed by emotions I don’t understand, Harou takes advantage and steps forward. Shit.

His growl has her eyes wide open.

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