Melissa took in a sharp breath. No… surely, he wasn’t… but the resemblance she’d always noticed… blond… blue-eyed…. She whimpered and buried her face in Trenton’s shoulder.
“What are the odds, Trenton?” She asked, her voice muffled against his shoulder.
“The odds of what?”
“The odds of him being related to Chad.” She raised her head. “Blond hair, same cold blue eyes, tell me it’s my imagination. Tell me that he just googled me and found a picture of Chad and me and that he thought it funny to terrorize me because they look alike.”
Trenton gazed at her a moment, then looked out the window.
Turning, she saw he was watching Billy walk across the parking lot with Carl laughing about something.
“I don’t know, Melissa, I didn’t get a good look at Chad that night.”
“He could be his twin. I saw that the first day I walked in here, and at first, I thought it was Chad.”
“We may never know, but I don’t want you stressing over it, it isn’t good for you or the baby,” he said as he shook his head. “Now, come on, let’s call it a day and get you home. I need to start packing those boxes.” Trenton stood up, pulling out his billfold.
Trenton turned and Melissa looked up to see, Victoria.
“Um… I just wanted to come over and say I’m sorry for the things I did,” Veronica said nervously as she fiddled with the hem of her shirt. “I also wanted to say that you were right when you said I should find someone my age. While you were gone one of the guys in my class asked me to the school dance. I accepted and had a nice time with him. We’ve been talking a lot and yesterday he told me he’s liked me for a long time.”
“I’m curious about something Victoria,” Melissa said with a smile. “What color hair does he have?”
Victoria smiled happily and answered, “Red, with the brightest green eyes I’ve ever seen. He also has the cutest freckles and dimples!”
“So, you like ginger men, do you?”
Victoria blushed, replying, “Yeah I do. I kinda forgot how cute I found freckles when Trenton came, but when the two of you were gone…”
“Out of sight out of mind?” Trenton questioned her.
“Yeah,” Victoria agreed. “When Jeremy came up and began talking to me, he smiled, and it reminded me how much I do like those things.”
“I’m happy for you Victoria, I really am,” Melissa told her. “I’m glad I don’t have to worry about you jumping me every time you see me.”
“Yeah, sorry about that. Um… Mom said the two of you got married, congratulations,” Victoria said.
“Thanks,” Melissa murmured, and Victoria left.
Trenton paid for their meal and Melissa headed for her vehicle. While she waited, she sat with the door open looking over at the bookstore. The window was still boarded up and she knew the inside probably smelled badly from the water damage.
“What are you thinking about so hard?” Trenton asked as he walked up.
Rolling her head over on the seat, to look at him, she answered, “The bookstore. You know it’s going to smell horrendous after being closed up for so long.”
He huffed. “I know. When we get home, I’ll call a glass man I know to get the glass replaced. With that done, I can call in a cleaning crew to go in and rip out all the carpet. Hopefully, there isn’t much damage to the wall, but if there is, I’ll have something done with them as well. Once I get all that done, I can start working on replacing the inventory. The insurance check came while we were gone, so I’ll pay out of pocket whatever it doesn’t cover.”
“Okay. Well, while you make your calls, I’m going to take a nap. When I get up, I’ll help you start filling those boxes.” Then she kissed him, and he closed her door. Starting the vehicle, she headed for home with him right behind her.
Time flew by as Trenton begin to ready his store to be reopened. It took a while to get it aired out after being closed-up for so long but taking out all the carpet had helped. All the sheetrock had to be replaced too because it had been full of mold.
Now, exactly three weeks later, everything was finished, and Trenton was ready to open back up. There were still some empty shelves, but they were expecting a shipment of books to arrive in the next couple of days. Victoria and her new beau have offered to help re-stock the shelves when they arrive.
Melissa was so happy to see Victoria happy and thriving under the adoration of her boyfriend Jeremy. He’s cute, sweet, and treated her like the special person she is. And I can call her special now because she isn’t chasing after my man!
Along with getting the store finished, Melissa and Trenton had also been working hard on getting him moved into her house, his personal things anyway. They hadn’t been able to decide whether they should rent his house, furnished it, or just tear the place down.
Trenton had mentioned that the place needed a lot of work, things he’d been putting off because he was so busy trying to get the bookstore going. For now, they were holding off and not getting in any hurry, but a decision will have to be made, eventually.
Rubbing her small baby bump, Melissa smiled, even with everything on my plate, I’m less tired now. I know Trenton thinks it was from the stress I was under, not the baby and maybe he’s right. Nevertheless, he makes sure I get plenty of rest and since he found some pre-natal vitamins, he’s been making sure I take them faithfully.
Heaving a heavy sigh, her thoughts continued, I still haven’t seen a doctor and I know I should. It’s just that wolvens are a bit different than human females and I’m worried that a doctor will notice something different about my pregnancy. Then he or she will want to run tests… I can’t allow that.
“Penny for your thoughts.”
Turning from the window to look at Cindy, she said, “They aren’t worth even that.”
“I’ll take your word for it, but you were pretty deep there in thought. Missing the hubby already?” Cindy teased. “He’s only gone to pick up his new truck from the dealership.”
“I know, and that wasn’t…” Melissa began only to stop. Going over and sitting down on the new couch she’d insisted Trenton put in the store, she tried again, “Cindy, you don’t know me, even though you knew my mom…”
“Honey, I know what you are, what your mom and dad were. It’s okay to speak freely with me.”
“I just, I miss them so much, Cindy. It doesn’t help that there are so many changes going on in my life that have me wishing they were here.”
“I know you do; I’ll help you if I can though,” Cindy murmured as she put a hand on Melissa’s knee in comfort.
“I know you will, I’m just not ready to…” The bell jingling over the door stopped her words. Glancing over, ready to greet the customer, she found Billy standing there smirking. Melissa quickly stood and asked, “Can I help you?”
“Nope, I just came to look around,” Billy answered as he glanced around. “I must say, book boy cleaned it up real nice. Guess he didn’t like the renovations I did for him.”
Cindy gasped. “You’re the one that threw the brick?”
Billy laughed as he opened the door to leave. “Did I say that? Good luck proving it!”
Melissa stood in shock as the door closed behind Billy. He basically just admitted to vandalizing the bookstore, but he was right, they couldn’t prove it.
“What I wouldn’t do to be able to knock that block he calls ahead from his shoulders!” Cindy shouted.
“Sadly, you can’t,” Melissa huffed. “So, come on, let’s get to stocking the last few boxes of books back on the shelves before Trenton gets back and catches us slacking.”
“I’m going to go for a run Trenton. My wolven is still agitated about earlier and needs to run,” Melissa said as she finished up, they dinner dishes.
Drying her hands, she glanced over at him where he sat drinking coffee at the table. She’d told Trenton about Billy’s visit as soon as he’d returned. He was extremely angry and had gone to talk to the police about it before coming home. Of course, they’d told him there was nothing they could do. He mentioned that he knew that, but he still wanted them to be aware. He’d also mentioned that he felt they needed to know in case Billy tried something else.
“Alright, I’m be going up to the house in a bit,” Trenton said as he finished his coffee and stood up. “I forgot a few things in my office there that I need tomorrow. I shouldn’t be gone long unless I find something else, I think I can’t live without. You be careful.”
“Always am,” she replied, kissing him. She then stripped and phased.
Trenton opened the door, but before she went through it, she gently ran her claws through his hair, her wedding bracelet glinting in the kitchen lights. Then, giving his forehead a loving lick, she bounded out the door and into the forest behind the house.
Melissa’s wolven ran and ran, trying to run off her irritability. Becoming thirsty, she stopped next to the small creek that ran through the property and began to drink. After only a couple of swallows, a cold feeling slithered down her spine causing her to raise her head. Something is wrong with Trenton; I can feel it through our bond. I don’t know what it is, but I don’t like the way it’s making me feel.
Taking off running, glad she was close to Trenton’s house, it didn’t take her long to get there. The feeling of dread had grown stronger with each step she took. Reaching the house, she heard yelling coming from the front of it. Moving quickly but silently, she made sure to stay in the shadows until she knew what she was dealing with
Rounding the corner of the house, she let out a silent snarl as she took in the scene before her. Carl was holding Trenton, his arms pulled behind his back as Billy beat on him. Trenton’s face was bloody, his shirt torn, and it looked as if he’d put up quite a fight before they’d incapacitated him.
“You should have left well enough alone book boy! The woman was mine and would have stayed mine if you’d minded your own business, but you came into town, building your stupid little store and suddenly you’re the town hero. Well, no more because by the time I’m through with you, no woman will want you!”
“I already have the woman I want, so it makes no difference to me,” Trenton said coldly before spitting out blood.
Billy gave a maniacal laugh as he pulled out a knife. “You won’t have her after I mess up that pretty face of yours!”
Melissa’s wolven snarled, nobody was going to hurt her chosen and live to tell the tale, nobody.