When she's ready

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IV

Weeks go by and Leonard sees how hard Elianne is struggling, is working so hard to change. To fit in with the other warriors, but every time there’s something she does or says, that makes him a little disappointed. He hoped so hard that this would be the nudge that she needed. He knows he has been hard on her that first training, but he needed to make a point. And because she’s been unteachable in school, he had to take hard measures to get the message clear. Somehow, he has a weak spot for her, because another girl or boy would have already been thrown out. But he just can’t, sometimes he just loves her wanton, her little mischiefs. He knows she still smokes secretly; he can smell it on her when she comes for training.

He walks over to Chris’s office and knocks on the door. The door opens and Jolena walks out. He sniffs the air and looks at her with a frown. “Jolena?”

“Yes, Leo?” Now Jolena frowns as well. “What’s wrong?”

“Nothing, I just smell- That scent,” He studies her from top to bottom. Then he realizes what the scent is, his eyes widen in surprise. “You’re with child! You’re pregnant!”

Jolena blushes, “Err, we weren’t going to tell yet,” she smiles a little, “but yes, I am.”

He hugs her. “Congratulations,” he says softly and kisses her on her cheek.

A low growl comes from the office. “Stop hugging my mate, get in here!” Chris’s deep voice comes from the office.

“Hey Chris, congratulations on the pregnancy.”

“Yeah, thanks,” Chris absentmindedly clears up some of the papers on the desk.

“You wanted to talk to me?”

“Yes, close the door and sit.” Chris looks up for a second, then continues tidying his desk.

When Leo sits down, he frowns, “what’s going on, Chris?”

“We’ve got a little problem, I guess.”

“Tell me, can I help?” Now Leo is getting worried, what is going on?

“Do you remember the old Beta? Patrick Harris’s father? The grandfather of the four Harris-kids?” Chris gazes at him.

Leo thinks hard, digging deep into his memory “The old Beta? As in William Harris?”

Chris nods, “yes.”

“What’s with him? Is he still alive?”

Chris shakes his head. “He passed away about a year ago, he had a stroke that he didn’t recover from. His mate Elisabeth, still lives in their little cabin near our Western border.”

“I know that cabin.” Leo nods. “We can see it when we are on patrol.”

“Well, it came to my ears that Elisabeth has gotten sick and is confined to bed. She needs someone to take care of her, as she refuses to come to the packhouse or the clinic to get the proper care.”

Leo frowns, “will she get better? As she has lost her mate, I can only presume healing will take very long, especially because she is already of an old age.”

Chris shrugs, “I have no idea. I am actually looking for someone who can take care of her. It must be someone she trusts, like close to her. I can’t miss Daniel, so he is out of the question.”

Leo’s eyes brighten as an idea pops up in his head. “Ask Elianne. She’s her granddaughter, she’s female which may be even more comfortable for Elisabeth and she can keep an eye on that part of the border.”

“Is she ready to work as a fulltime warrior?” Chris looks concerned.

“I don’t know, but I think we need to show her some trust. She’s having a hard time fitting in, she doesn’t really have the mindset of a warrior. But she is in good shape, her endurance is pretty darn good, she can handle most of my warriors without a problem, she has surprised me more than once. She’s a clever one too, has good tactics, good insight in certain situations, she can adapt pretty well.”

Chris frowns, “seems like she is an excellent warrior. How does she not have the right mindset?”

“She slacks, is lazy sometimes, shows a lot of disrespect and she doesn’t take care of her body very well.” Leo sighs. “That’s what you get when they reach their puberty.”

“Well, if you agree, then I’ll ask her. She’ll get the chance to do something useful. She’ll get a lot of responsibility for a girl her age. You are certain she can handle it?”

“I am almost certain. I’ll check on her occasionally, if that makes you feel more at ease.” Leo smiles a little.

“She’s just very young, that’s all.” Chris says, “I’ll link her to get over here. That way we can ask her right away.”

A few minutes later, a knock on the door is heard and when Chris tells the person behind the door to enter. Patrick Harris with his daughter Elianne. Leo gets up from his chair and decides to lean against the wall behind Chris.

Patrick immediately starts talking when he comes in. “What did she do this time, Alpha?”

Elianne, who’s behind him quietly shuts the door. “Dad! I didn’t do anything!” She says with hurt evident in her eyes.

Patrick turns to face Elianne. “Then tell me why the hell I am summoned to see the Alpha, with you! You’ve been nothing but a pain in my butt, you’ve been looking for nothing but trouble lately and I’ve had enough!”

“Hold on, Patrick, that’s enough now. You’re not here because Elianne did something wrong. Now if you’ll sit, please, that talks a little easier.” Chris gestures for them to sit on the chairs in front of him.

“I wanted to discuss something with you. I want to ask Elianne something, but because she’s under-age, you have to be here and give your permission.” Chris explains.

Patrick backs down a little. “What did you want to ask, Alpha?”

“I became aware of the condition of your mother; Elisabeth and I am concerned about her wellbeing. I don’t think it is wise for an elderly woman, who is confined to bed, to live all by herself in the middle of the woods.”

Patrick nods, “I have been worrying about that a lot actually, Alpha.”

“Now my brother Leo here,” Chris takes a glance over his shoulder for a second, “actually had a good idea. He suggested to send Elianne to your mother, for as long as needed. She not only can look after your mother, but she will gain a lot or independence, she will be responsible not only for herself, but also for your mother. We thought that that would be a good lesson for Elianne to learn.”

“But-” Elianne tries to interrupt Christopher, but he holds his hand up to shut her up. When she looks up, she looks straight in Leo’s eyes. He shakes his head.

“There’s more.” Chris says. “Because the cabin is so close to the border, it may be a good place for Elianne to keep an eye on what crosses our border in the west. We’ve heard rumours about things happening to neighbouring villages, and we want to keep our pack safe.”

“Sir, may I ask something?” She’s learnt from her little interruption. Chris nods. “So, I would have to do rounds and patrols there in the area?”

Leo pushes himself off the wall and decides to join the conversation. “Yes. It’s what you’ve been trained for, it’s what you know. I’ll come by every once in a while, to check on you and so you can report to me.”

“I would like to do that,” Elianne nods.

“Patrick, what do you think?”

Patrick frowns thoughtfully. “Isn’t she a bit young to take on such a heavy task? I mean she’s only been with the warriors for a few weeks.”

Chris looks at Leo for his opinion. “I think this could be just what she needs right now. She has the feeling that we’re up her back all the time now.” Leo notices the surprise in her eyes when he speaks about her. She probably never expected for him to read her that well. “With this, she can prove herself, create some distance between you and hopefully with some time, restore what may be broken between the two of you.”

“Well,” Patrick looks a little unsure at his daughter. “If you really think that she’s up for it and she agrees with it, then I don’t think I can have anything against it.” Patrick smiles a little, “are you sure you want to do this?”

Elianne nods and a wide grin appears on her face. “Definitely. You know how much I love grandma. Thanks dad. And err, Alpha Anderson and Captain Anderson.”

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