Chapter Twenty Three
The sound of Caleb’s heart beating was so relaxing to me, being in his arms was the best feeling in the world. His fingers gently brush my bare arm leaving a trail of goosebumps across my skin. Butterflies erupt in my stomach and I have to take a shallow breath to let it sink in that this was real.
Caleb’s fingers stop on my skin and instead tap my arm, I glance up to him.
“I may have done something but I don’t want you to be angry at me,” Caleb says quietly.
My brows pull down into a light frown as I push my palm to the bed so I can sit up better. My heart starts to race at his words. “What?” I ask.
“Today I contacted a family friend who is a therapist,” he starts. I just stare back at him. “Zara spoke to her for a good few months, she didn’t have the best time growing up and she really helped her.”
My throat becomes dry and swallowing was almost impossible. Caleb’s hand moves up to the side of my face and he gently glides his thumb across my cheekbone. “All I did was contact and ask her if she has any spare time to come by, in no way am I forcing you to do this but I just want to give you the option to. It’s completely up to you pups but I think you should really think about this.”
My eyes flick between his and after a while I look down to the bed instead. “Pups,” Caleb says again.
“I’ll think about it,” my voice croaks.
“Really?” Caleb’s voice sounds hopeful.
I nod towards the bed.
“Look at me,” he says quietly.
My face melts into his hand and I glance up into his green eyes. “I’m proud of you, you know that?” His words sounded so soft and sincere that my heart begun to ache with love.
What an odd and surreal feeling.
The corners of my mouth twitch up into a smile. Caleb leans forward and leaves a lingering kiss on my forehead.
A loud noise from downstairs pulls us away from each other. The front door slams with a loud bang and it makes me jump. Caleb’s eyes become alert and worry instantly creeps up in my body, I grip onto the bed covers.
“Caleb?” A voice shouts.
“Shit,” he mumbles under his breath and jumps off the bed, pulling me with him.
“Who is it?” I whisper quickly.
“Felix. I don’t know why he’s here!” He exclaims harshly and frantically begins to look around the room like he didn’t know what to do.
Footsteps can be heard on the stairs and Caleb shoves me into the en suite and shuts the door behind me. I stumble and grip onto the basin to stop myself flying through the wall. Eventually I turn around and I stare back at the white door and my hands begin to shake.
Did he really just do that?
I walk forward and press my ear to the wooden door as I hear their voices talking.
“What’s happened? Why are you back?” Caleb’s voice is muffled.
Felix talks but I can’t hear exactly what he says, I can sense that they’re standing in between the corridor and Caleb’s room. He mentions something about Zara but I don’t catch what me says.
Felix must have moved closer to the door as his voice is just about audible.
“Is someone here? I can smell something,” Felix states. My heart pounds in my chest aggressively.
Caleb awkwardly laughs.
“Damn man, you’ve had a girl here haven’t you?” Felix shouts like he’s impressed.
“Yeah just a quick one, she’s urm... gone now.” Caleb replies before clearing his throat.
Pain stretches throughout my body at his words. Why was he lying to him? This hurt more than I thought it would, it was killing me.
“You little fuck boy, was she good? Blonde like usual?” Felix asks cheekily and I hear a hand slap on skin. He was congratulating him for pulling.
Tears well in my eyes. Fuck this. Fuck him.
Caleb struggles with his words like he’s in pain. All I can hope is that it’s my pain he’s feeling. My sadness.
“Yeah, b-blonde,” he stutters.
“You seeing your dad later then?” Felix questions.
“Yeah I’m leaving in a bit, you should probably get back to the others.” Caleb says dismissively.
“Yeah, I’m just gonna grab Zara’s tablets and head on my way.” Felix’s voice gets quieter as he moves down the hall.
A few moments pass as they say goodbye to each other and the front door slams.
My hands ball into fists letting my fingernails dig into my palms. I find the courage to open the bathroom door and when I look up Caleb is standing by his bed, his breathing was heavier than usual. Bet he thinks he escaped that one lightly.
He turns to look at me when he hears the door open. He looked guilty. He should.
“Are you kidding me?” I whisper, my voice full of pain. A tear drips from my eye.
“I’m sorry I didn—”
“Am I nothing to you?” I shout angrily. More tears dribble out of my eyes at an alarming rate. “Is that what you think of me, just some quick fling?”
“Pups please,” Caleb walks towards me.
I hold my hand out to stop him.
“Don’t,” I shake my head. “Just don’t.”
Taking quick deep breaths to stop myself from panicking.
“I never meant for this to happen okay, I just panicked.” Caleb’s hands exaggerate actions.
“So you what, lied to make yourself feel better?!” I exclaim, my pain is making me angry and I strain my voice as I shout. “Are you embarrassed of me or something?”
“No,” Caleb says desperately.
“Ashamed of me?” I cry. “Is that it?!”
“No!” He yells “I’m not embarrassed or ashamed of you pups.”
“Then why can’t you tell Felix? He’s not your dad. He’s your god damn beta, you think he’s going to judge you? Make fun of you?” My voice croaks.
Caleb rests his head in his hands like he’s completely defeated and lets out a heavy sigh of regret. “I’m scared, okay?”
“Scared of what?” I shout so loud my ears almost pop.
“That my dad will find out Evan, you know this!” He shouts back, his eyes full of fury.
My head begins to shake as I hold his stare, tears continue to fall from my eyes without blinking.
I let out a short snort. “He’s not your dad Caleb, he’s your beta and if you don’t trust him then why is he your beta?” I lower my voice. “I appreciate you’re scared of your dad but tell me right now are you scared of coming out to everyone else?”
Caleb looks up to the ceiling and clamps his eyes shut. “No pups, I’m not scared to come out to anyone. Not Felix, my pack or your pack. The second my dad finds out. This could end everything.”
“I’ve had to act like I don’t even know who you are Caleb, it’s not fair it has to be like this.” My head shakes towards him. “I don’t want our relationship to be a secret forever, is this just how it’s going to be until we grow old?”
“I’m not scared about coming out to anyone else pups, you have no idea the fear I feel when I think of my dad finding out.”
“Then how long are we going to wait?”
“I need time,” Caleb replies quietly.
“I know this is hard for you but this is your life, life is fucking short and we need to live it right now.”
Caleb looks at me like he experienced whiplash. “Pups,” his voice sounds distressed. He walks closer but stops a few inches in front of me.
My watery eyes look up to him, looking at him hurt so badly.
“I’m sorry I fuck everything up. I’m sorry I’m the shittest mate in the world. I’m sorry that I’m scared something will happen to us if people start finding out. I’m not prepared to lose you pups, I am not losing you.” Caleb says harshly though gritted teeth.
“You won’t lose me if we are together.” I tell him quickly.
“You don’t know what my father is capable of,” Caleb says, his eyes becoming heavy with tiredness.
This conversation was draining us both and I wanted it to stop. I just wanted everything to be okay.
“I wish you could understand Evan, I really do.” Caleb’s head finds his hands again.
Distress flows into my body and it makes me feel uncomfortable. He really was scared, he was scared to lose me, to lose what we have.
Instinct takes over and I wrap my arms around his torso and bury my head into his bare chest.
Caleb’s hands lower and wrap around my shoulders. He squeezes me tightly and cups the back of my head with his hand. “I’m so scared to lose you pups, I don’t want anything to come in the way of us. Not my dad, not my pack, not anyone.”
“I get that,” I whisper into his chest. “But it can’t be like this forever. We both deserve that.”
I pull him away to arms length. Caleb’s eyes fall as he looks down to me. “I don’t deserve you.” He says before averting my gaze. “I’m a coward I know.”
“You’re not a coward, you’re just afraid.” I state simply. “Maybe work towards telling Felix, he’s your best friend and I know he will understand.”
His soft green eyes glance up at me.
“You don’t even have to say that I’m you’re mate but one step at a time, right?” I say.
Caleb nods after a few moments. “I know I need to man up but maybe if we do things slowly we will get there eventually.”
“Don’t say those words,” I tell him. “They’re so fucking damaging. To ‘man up’ is telling yourself your feelings aren’t valid. They are Caleb and I get you’re scared. I just need to know that we can live a future together, without having to keep our relationship quiet.”
“We will pups, I promise you that.”
I smile supportively. “Okay, then it’s something to work towards?”
He lets out a worried sigh. “Yeah.”
“Your dad won’t find out if you trust him. Do you trust him?” I ask as I lace my fingers through his.
“Of course I do,” he nods at me.
“Well you have nothing to worry about. I’m sure your pack are shit scared of your dad anyway, what good would it be if they told him? He’s probably miles away right now. The likelihood of him finding out through your pack is slim to none Caleb. You really need to get this out of your head and stop letting it lead your life.” I give his hands a squeeze.
“You might not think it pups but you are so so strong. Mentally, I don’t know how you do it.” His forehead lowers to press to mine.
“Everyone has their demons and everyone is their own worst enemy. Sometimes you just need to push past that and think what makes you happy. What makes you want to get up every day and live your life. You can’t be unhappy forever Caleb.” I whisper quietly.
I watch as he takes in my words.
“I never thought having a mate could be this special. You are really going to save me pups, you have no idea.” He grips my face between his hands and presses a kiss to my lips.
All I could think in my head was, you’ve already saved me.