Chapter 26 - The River
(Him - Ryder) Now ...
Hope did an amazing job raising Daniel. Dan as he prefers to be called. He’s an amazing kid. Spending time with him is exactly what I need and we finally start to build our father/son relationship. Sharing our memories of Hope also made me realize how much I miss her. I like the person she became in what Dan tells me about her. Maybe she was always like that… Even if the feeling of betrayal is still strong, I love her. I can’t help it.
Sam was right. I should’ve fought for her… Way before the day she was kicked out of the pack. I always looked at her, looked after her, making sure she was okay or never bullied. But I did it keeping my distance, from far. I was waiting for her to come to me. Which is stupid now that I think about it. She always stayed away from everyone, even her own family. She would’ve never come by herself… Even if she wanted to. I know she wanted it as much as I did. The way she reacted to me… How responsive and begging she was…
I’m going to bed thinking about what would have been our life if she had stayed, if I’d known about Dan, if I would’ve fought for her as a mate should. A big part of me hopes she’s still alive. That we will still have a chance to patch things up, to have our happy ending. Please, give me something! A clue to find you, or to understand why you did what you did.
I never thought I would die like that so far away from my pack. How couldn’t I be more careful. I walk directly through that trap. And now I need to face 16 rogues alone. Even if I’m stronger, I’m not that stronger. But I will die taking down as many rogues as I can!
“Let’s kill that fucking rogues!” My wolf snarls while I shift and let him take control.
We fought the best we could and I’m able to take down 7 of them before feeling myself growing weaker. When I can’t take it anymore, I shift back into my human form and collapse on the floor, my back on my car, breathing with difficulty. Both of my legs are broken and my left arm too. I know my end has come. Suddenly a thunderbolt touches the ground a few meters from me and an angel appears, my angel. In a few minutes, Hope killed all the rogues left. When she tries to touch me I growl at her. My anger rises suddenly when I think about the last time I saw her a few months ago. My wolf's pain because we're not enough for her when we would've mountain for her. I would have give up anything for her but not her!
“Don’t touch me!” I snap.
“I just want to check your injuries.” She explains with a surrender gesture.
I laugh, livid: “ As if you care! Now you want to play my mate!”
“Ryder please. I’m here to help you.”
“And then stab me on my back like you did last time.” I snarl.
She sighs: “ I only did the right thing.”
“How choosing a dead filthy Tiger over you mate is the right thing?!”
“Because it could’ve been me...” She whines.Two people appear in her back. Phoebe and Enzo.
“How did you do it?” Phoebe asks Hope.
“I felt he was in danger and I needed to be here to protect him.” Hope explains.
“The need to protect me! Let me laugh! You’re so full of shit Hope!” I comment.
“Ryder, I love you but-”
I cut her “ Save it for someone who cares. I hate you and I really wish it the last time I saw you.”
I can see how she is hurt by my words. Good! Now she knows how I feel.
“It was a human being, not some emblem! If one day something like that happens to me I hope someone will free me!” She hiss.
“It was a fucking Tiger, Hope. You can’t trust them. They don’t deserve you respect and compassion. What kind of Luna betrays his pack like you did. How can you even look at yourself in a mirror? You’re so disgusted!”
“What if your son is one of them?” She asks.
“Impossible! I would rather die than to sleep with one of those scumbags!”
“What if I told you already did it?” She mutters.
“Goddess, you’re so stupid.” I mock her.
“Give me one valid reason why you did it?” I ask her.
“Because like them I’m a Filthy little bitch!” She hisses.
“That you’re a bitch!” I yell. Enzo roars, his eyes changing color. Oh great a werecat! Just my luck.
“So now you befriended them. The worst is to think I saw you as my mate and my Luna. I was so foul to believe in us. I will ruin you, Hope!” I thunder. She’s crying, her eyes full of anger.
“I, Hope Santiago accept-”
“NO! Think of your son. It will put him in too much stress if you break the bond now. It’s too dangerous..” Enzo cuts her.
“You’re pregnant?” I ask my blood running cold. She takes a step back and puts her hands protectively in front of her womb. It’s the only confirmation I need.
“Is it mine?” I inquire.
“It doesn’t matter. I will not let him suffer as I did in your pack!” She sobs.
“What are you talking about? You were loved!” I retort.
“You still don’t get it, do you? I’m one of them and our son might be too.”
What is she talking about?! She’s insane, that’s the only explanation.
“Is he going to make it through?” She asks Phoebe.
Phoebe nods: “And I can slow the bleeding the time his healing process kicks out.”
“Okay do it and make him forget everything.” Hope commands while Phoebe nods again.
“No! You can’t do that!” I boom with my Alpha’s voice.
They just ignore me. Hope looks at Enzo and adds like I didn’t yell a second ago: “I’m going for a run!”
“Goodbye Alpha Ryder, have a nice life.” She says coldly looking directly at my eyes. Then she unexpectedly shifts into a Tiger. What the fuck!
“You didn’t see that want coming, Alpha.” Enzo mocks me.
I can’t reply. I’m just speechless. Everything is taking a whole new meaning now.
“She’s beautiful, isn’t she?” He comments looking at the direction she left and I can only agree with him.
“You don’t deserve her asshole. I will make sure to remind that to her, until she accepts your rejection and then she will be mine!” He adds, smirking at the end.
I growl and try to get up but I fail, that makes him smirk even more, Bastard!
“I’m going to check on her. She needs MY comfort. Do what you have to do.” He states, looking at Phoebe and then shifts into a Leopard.
“Asshole. I will kill you!” I swear.
When I see Phoebe getting close, kneeling in front of me, I try to step back but I’m blocked by my car.
“Don’t you dare!” I snarl.
“It’s going to be okay, in a few minutes you will not remember anything.” She comforts me.
“But you don’t understand. I had no idea! I let my anger spoke! I need to fix things with Hope! Please let me fix things. She’s my mate and she’s bearing my cub. I can’t let him take my place. They are mine!” I beg.
“Enzo is not a threat to you, he was just making you pay for making her cry again. Moreover even if he was, Hope’s heart only belongs to you. You’re the only one she loves and she can love. She loves you, since she can remember. She even wrote in her diary.”
“Will she accept my rejection then if I’m really the love of life?” I ask.
“If she thinks it’s for you and your son’s safety , absolutely. Hope always does what she thinks is the right thing.”
“No matter the consequences…” I agree.
“But I want to be here for them! She's my life this is why it's so hard to live without her!”
“I’m sorry I wish things could be different… but it’s too soon. If I let you go, you will come after them and you will cause both of your falls. I can’t let that happen, I will never forgive myself. You will not forget forever though. When the time is right you will remember.”
“When will be the right time? When my son will be a teenager and he will come knocking at my door!” I groan.
“It depends partly on you when you will be ready to fully accept her. When you will be open minded at the idea of being a mate to a werecat.”
“But I already do! I don’t care if she’s a Tiger!” I protest.
“And your pack is ready? Are you ready to face the consequences of being mated to your enemy?” She asks and when she sees my face she sighs: “ Yeah, that’s what I thought...”
“One last thing before I start: If I were you I will take back my rejection in the next 6 months, before Hope can accept it.”
She starts to mutter a spell and everything go black.
I wake up sweating and breathing fast. Oh my Goddess, what I’ve done!