Tripple update this weekend, so don't forget to read the previous two chapters, my treat! Enjoy😉
My beating heart didn’t know how to react. Either did I!
Is my heart about to be ripped from its encasing? My cheeks began to flush crimson as Atreus walked to the stage and lifted Caroline up into a bridal style hold. I held back the tears while the palms of my hands screamed out from the nails that were digging into them right now.
Atreus wouldn’t do this to me! I know he wouldn’t!
He began his decent off the stage and into the aisle where I stood. He looked down at Caroline and I could see there was affection in his gaze.
Am I a fool?
My breathing almost stopped as he walked closer, pausing in front of me he looked me in the eyes.
“I have to get her to the infirmary; she needs serious medical attention. We need to talk.” He speaks with a serious tone that made me waver and I watched as he passed me by, carrying out that woman and disappearing into the night. I was frozen to the spot not quite believing my own eyes.
‘Don’t fret bunny we will speak when I get back.’ Atreus finally speaks over the mind-link, and I don’t know how to take it, or what to think.
The hustle of the crowd finally disrupted me, I turned back to see the Paramount standing front and center. Her gaze latched onto me and the shit eating grin that plastered her face made me almost empty my stomach right there and then.
Was that it, was this her plan. To split us up or put an obstacle in our way. I couldn’t think right now, and my airways felt tight and heavy, like I couldn’t breathe. I needed out of this building; the fresh air was calling me.
Pushing through the exiting crowds, managing to grab my bag on the way I ran as hard and fast as I could. The crowds filled the forecourt directly outside the Arena and it was still so stifling being surrounded by so many eyes and ears.
Many of whom were looking on at me with judging eyes though that didn’t bother me. I had grown accustomed to glares from others judging me before they ever took the time to know me.
I had grown a thick skin over the years.
...Funny how one’s opinion can change when they find out you were an orphan and probably the product of a pair of rouges. Nice ha! Over the years I brushed it all away, thankful for the inner strength that blossomed from the mistreatment.
When I finally broke free of the crowds I walked at an easy pace enjoying the cooling evening breeze. It centered me allowing me to calm the brewing rage that I was fighting down.
Then in no time at all I found myself back in the suite. Our little abode, the place we became a pair, finally accepting our bond. This place was special to me now. It had significance for a major part of our relationship and it made me happy to be here but a little sad that the other half of me wasn’t…
I hopped straight into the shower, wishing to wash away the day’s dirt and grime. The only thing was that some of the grime from today couldn’t be washed away with water it felt like it clung to me adding to all my other demons that loved to taunt me.
Later as I stood by the kitchen counter dressed in a camisole and panties warming my tummy with a hot chocolate. Thoughts of the last time I wanted the very same beverage. Nathaniel had bet that desire out of me. Wasn’t it curious that I stood with the same beverage now, hours after Atreus had left me in the convention center?
Any and all conclusions had roamed through my mind over the past hours. But I had held on the hope that Atreus was just doing his Alpha duties, even when flashes of him looking down at Caroline with affection played with my insecurities. How could they not?
My friends had called by to reassure me. Niamh and even Charlie stopped by though that was down to Atreus seemingly he was worried about his Luna despite the fact that he had now shut me out of the mind-link once again.
That action was playing with a deeper side of me. Maybe it was these markings or becoming Atreus’ Luna, I don’t know but I could feel a deep-seated anger building from a part of myself that I had never felt or experienced before, and I knew it wasn’t coming from Oriel who still hid deep within my inner self.
I was changing.
Hours he had spent with her, fucking hours!
And the longer away from me the more I felt as if the bond between us was weaker than I hoped it to be. From the beginning I knew there was some kind of blockage between us.
Both of us realized we were mates and yet there was still a missing part, a piece of the puzzle that was gone astray and without that I worried that our bond could be broken.
I want us to be titanium strong that nothing could break us, that no one could come between the bond created by the Goddess. But not just that I wanted are union to be built with the love and affection that we had naturally felt between us.
Not just relying on the pull of the bond. It had flourished for me easily. My question was― had it for him?
All the insecurities that plagued me popped back through my mind. I had told Charlie and my friends that I was fine and there was nothing to worry about, asking them to leave because I was tired. I wasn’t! I just needed space.
Goddess poor Quinn I love that girl so and I know she was worrying so very much for me. She wanted to stay, she even offered to give Atreus a good beat down.
That was the first time I had laughed all evening, her theatrics and sense of righteousness always bolstered me through the hard times. If the Goddess blessed me with anything it was the day, I met her. The girl was my heart and I loved her I just needed the space and time to deal with all of this.
I couldn’t give into the weakness that plague me and allow myself to wallow, although that was easier said than done.
Finally, the door rattled and in walked the man of the hour. He looked disheveled almost broken. My first instinct was to run into those strong arms of his but something in me held me back.
I watch as his Adams apple bobbed in his throat, he was struggling with what to say. I just waited…
“Paloma…” Atreus said and looked into my eyes.
I had avoided his from the moment he entered the suite. I instantly looked away; I didn’t want pity! Not from him! Never from him! I wanted him to look at me with love and pride, with honor and respect but never with pity.
I turned and Looked out to the starlit sky. The night had almost passed. The morning sun would soon to grace this obsidian sky and I looked out wishing I was back in the Goddess Temple Gardens where I felt safe and home. His pause was so long though I felt heat emanating off his body, so I knew he had moved close to me.
“Say it Atreus…. Do not sugar coat it. Tell me what I need to hear, tell me why you would fight for that woman. Tell me why you would shut me out. Tell me…” I thought that I wouldn’t be able to finish my sentence, but anger threaded its way into me, and it escaped in the words that I said.
“It’s like I said to the Paramount. She was one of my warriors, she was proven to be innocent so she should be let free. She has been through so much I couldn’t abandon her. As much as you would like me too, I couldn’t.”
I spun round in an instant, glaring at the man that stood before me.
“Is that what you think of me?” My heart ached even more.
“You think that I am some cruel bitch that wishes others to suffer?
That I wish my mate to betray is true self for my own desires?
Is that what you see in me Atreus?” Even as I stood there strong holding my ground, I could feel the foundations beneath me begin to crumble and subside.
Was that how he truly saw me?
He stepped forward and brushed my hair out of my eyes, placing his hand on the side of my face. I couldn’t look away now even if I wanted to, he had captured me.
“No.” Is all that he said and enveloped my lips with his own. It was a hungry punishing kiss that held so much in as he devoured my mouth with his own. I should have pushed him away, I should have slapped him and asked for him to respect my space, but I couldn’t.
His touch meant too much to me and I couldn’t just reject it. Those lips of his were mine. Mine to kiss, mine to savor, mine to love…
When we finally came up for air, I looked him deep in the eye waiting for his explanation.
“I want to tell you that I feel nothing for her, I wish I could. I wish that she had never walked into my life. I know that she is a hard spot for you. But there is something underhanded going on here Paloma. Whatever this bond is between us will be broken mark my words.”
“What? What do you mean Atreus, do you feel a bond with her? The mates bond?” I looked at him incredulously. He lowered his head and nodded.
Is this a fucking joke!
My life, is it a Joke?
“Are you serious.” I asked my heart thudding in my chest. “How can you have two living mates? I thought when we mated, and you marked me that whatever she was playing at was going to disappear.” I said with little conviction, I don’t understand anything anymore.
“Don’t you!” He said annoyed. “What about me and Nathaniel!” he then pointed out. And I couldn’t argue with him on that point, I had felt the mates’ bond with both these men. Both of whom are still alive today…
“So, what you’re telling me is she is your mate? Am I right in saying that?”
“Honestly, Paloma I don’t know what the hell is going on. I don’t feel anything romantically for her. But there is a bond that I feel. I could feel all her suffering today as the Paramount tortured her. It is so strange she feels like…” he paused and walked away from me taking a seat on the sofa that sat at the other end of the room. His head held in is hands while his elbows rested on his knees.
I walked over slowly and took a seat across from him I could feel nothing but distress pulsing from him.
“She feels like her.” He said so sorrowfully.
“Like whom?” I asked. My mind buzzing with a million possibilities. Everything that had happened in the last twenty-four hours forgotten. The Goddess Temple Gardens, the clues I had found the discovery I had made. The wonder of the waterfall, meeting the Patria Luna, the war that is ahead of us. All forgotten but the fear of what was about to come out my mates’ mouth. Though I never thought he would say what he did as I watched while I could feel his heart breaking before me.
“Like Tatiana, my first mate…”