Chapter Twenty Five
“Evan and I are mates, Jaxon. That’s why I’m here.” The words slip out of Caleb’s mouth so easily. I stare at him in complete shock, was I hearing this right?
Caleb continues to look up at Jaxon but I was in complete awe of what was happening. His hand moves to find mine and gives me a tight squeeze. My heart was going to explode, was he finally coming to terms with this?
The room is silent for a few moments and I eventually tear my eyes away from Caleb and towards Jaxon. He looks back at both of us and he blinks like he’s deep in thought, Ava is standing closely behind him.
“Oh,” Jaxon says as his eyes furrow slightly. “Congrats guys, that’s really... great. I’m happy for you.” The words sound forced as Jaxon nods towards us.
“You don’t sound it,” Caleb shoots back quickly, his grip on my hand tightening. His voice wasn’t harsh or aggressive, it sounded like he was hurt.
Jaxon’s facial expressions relax as he begins to shake his head. “No I am happy for you guys, I’m just shocked? This is honestly the last thing I expected.”
Ava moves forward and places her hand on the small of his back. “Be happy for them,” she whispers up to him.
“I am, it’s just we’ve been training together for more than two months now and you kept it from all of us for all this time?” He looks at Caleb, his eyes full of confusion.
Caleb’s head lowers slightly. “I know,” he says before clearing his throat. “I know it took too long but it’s my fault. I told Evan to keep quiet about it because I needed time to think about how everyone was going to react. No one else knows, only you guys.” His green eyes turn to me as he smiles gently.
Jaxon’s eyes look at me, his lips frown. “He’s your mate Caleb, not a secret.” His voice is soft and completely catches me by surprise.
I have to stop the tears from falling again.
“I know he’s not a secret,” Caleb says quietly, his head ducking away from all of our stares.
“Well, we’ll give you some space to talk,” Ava says as she links her fingers through Jaxon’s and pulls him out of the room, the door shutting loudly behind them.
Silence fills the room again until Caleb lets out a strained sigh. “This was never meant to happen pups,” he says as his brings our entwined hands up to his mouth, his soft lips leave a lingering kiss between my knuckles.
“What wasn’t?” I say back quietly.
My eyes watch him carefully as he looks out to the white floors, his eyes scanning over the outskirts of the room like he was contemplating the meaning of life. “This was never meant to get out of hand, you were never meant to be here.” His eyes flicker to me and they’re glassed over with tears again. “This is all my fault.”
“The thought of you getting into the water with the purpose of—” he cuts himself off like he can’t finish the sentence. He takes a breath and carries on. “The purpose of killing yourself fucking haunts me pups, I can’t get the image out of my head and I just—” he stops again and he quickly wipes his eyes free of tears.
“I never meant to try and put myself in the hospital or commit suicide Caleb I swear,” I rush quickly. “Being under the water was just so quiet and it made me feel so numb, I got carried away and before I knew it I was sinking lower and lower. I didn’t realise I was fucked until I started struggling.” My hands begin to shake so Caleb continues to peck them over and over.
“But what is so fucked up is the fact I liked it, I liked it Caleb.” I cry and quickly wipe my eyes. “I liked feeling nothing. Absolutely nothing.”
“God,” Caleb let’s out harshly, resting his forehead against our hands. I watch as stray tears escape his eyes. “That scares me Evan, it fucking terrifies me.”
“I just felt so alone and so fed up of everything, I wanted to know what it would feel like. Everything just got too much and I never meant for anyone to be this upset.” I choke back a sob, my eyes burn like I haven’t slept in days.
“Why can I never get better?” I say angrily, my throat stings. “Am I broken or something? Why can I not just be fucking normal?!” I curse out loud.
“Shhh, shhh,” Caleb tugs at my hands and pulls my body closer to his. I didn’t realise that my small frame started shaking aggressively until Caleb’s arms wrap around me. He gently rocks us side to side and I sob into his chest. “Breathe baby,” he whispers into my ear.
I didn’t realise how much I needed this embrace until now, to feel his warm skin against mine. His heart beating against my chest. The way my body fit so perfectly in his arms.
My mouth lets out a jittery breath as I attempt to calm down, taking in his soothing scent.
“You need time pups and from now on, I am not going anywhere. I’m going to wait for you outside your therapy sessions, I’m going to make sure every time you have a bad session that we go and do something that takes your mind off stuff. I’m going to come and visit you a lot more, we’re gonna spend so much time together.” He pauses for a moment and pulls alway so he can look be dead in the eye. “It’s you and me now, we’re a team okay?”
My lips quiver at his words. I nod vigorously as my eyes dribble tears again.
“We are gonna get you better,” Caleb tells me as he runs a hand through my blonde curls, over and over. His eyes watch his own movements, a look of content in his eyes. “And I’m gonna make you the happiest person on Earth. I will not stop until I do that.”
My lips finally break out into a tiny smile but my eyes never stop.
“But I gotta ask for one thing,” he says as his eyes eventually gravitate back to mine.
I clamp down my jaw at his words, my heart beating quickly.
“What?” I say quietly.
“My dads been hanging around a lot, I want to tell my pack. I will tell my pack but I don’t want to do it whilst he’s here. He could ruin everything. Can we—” Caleb pauses and sighs harshly. “Can we give it a week or two until he’s out of the picture for now?”
My brows furrow at his words slightly and Caleb’s eyes notice.
He instantly shakes his head at me. “I want to focus on getting you better, I want to focus on your therapy and your wellbeing. I want to be all about you, I don’t want to be worrying about him too.”
I purse my lips and don’t say anything.
“Please pups, this is about you. It’s all about you. Mentally you’re in a bad place and I don’t want any distractions, just you and me. Figuring this shit out.” He holds onto my hand and grips so tight that I’m almost sure he’s never going to let go.
As I take in his words I can understand where he’s coming from. I did want to get better and to do that I needed to be focused on me.
I nod at him and his face lights up softly. “Okay,” I say.
“Yeah, we can wait.” I croak.
Caleb grins at me and pulls me in for a kiss. When he pulls away he just continues to stare at me, his eyes taking their time to wander over every inch of my face.
“Don’t look at me,” I grumble as I attempt to wipe under my eyes from any rogue tears.
Caleb’s hands gently wrap around my wrists and pull them away from my face. “Why not?” He quizzes me, there’s a glint in his eye of admiration and it made my heart tingle.
“Because I could imagine I look like a zombie right now,” I grumble as I try to fight away his hands.
“Hmmm,” Caleb hums in a teasing way. “Maybe not a zombie but a really fucking hot werewolf.” His mouth opens slightly to show his perfect teeth in a small smile.
I almost have to resist the urge to roll my eyes, instead I hold his stare. “Is that your attempt to cheer me up?” I raise my eyebrows at him.
Caleb laughs and moves closer, his lips resting against mine. “Maybe,” he mumbles against me, the vibrations making my lips tingle. “Is it working?”
My heart falls through my stomach when he kisses me gently.
“No,” I laugh gently. “I don’t think I match the word hot.”
Caleb furrows his eyebrows and smiles as he nods his head at me. “Yes it does,” he says before stealing another kiss. “We could be here all night if you want to argue with me.”
“I would much rather spend the night with you,” I admit, my voice dropping in sadness. I was sick of smelling disinfectant already, there was nothing I hated more than hospitals.
“Then why don’t we?” He suggests.
I sigh and shake my head. “I can’t,” I say as I look down to the white bedding. “They want to keep me in over night.”
“And?” Caleb says. “Like that’s going to stop me from staying here with you.”
My heart twangs at his words. “You reckon they’ll let you stay?” I ask as I sit up from the bed slightly.
“Well they’re going to have to try and stop me,” Caleb replies as he stands up from the chair beside the bed.
He looks down to me. “Cuddle?”
I smile instantly and nod. Moving my body over to the other side as much as I could so Caleb could get his ginormous body onto the bed. He climbs on with ease and pulls me onto him, his arms holding me tightly.
“I missed you,” I say into his chest, the words not even registering in my brain before I said them.
“I missed you too pups,” his hand gives my arm a gentle squeeze. “I’m sorry for not prioritising you and getting caught up with my dad. You should always come first.”
“I can’t ask you to put your life on hold for me, I shouldn’t be relying on you for happiness anyway.” I tell him truthfully.
“But you needed me pups, you weren’t relying on me for happiness. You needed me and I wasn’t there for you and I will never forgive myself for it.” Caleb’s deep voice struggles.
The room goes silent for a few moments, the buzz of the machine beside us beeping occasionally.
“I want to be better. I want to be better Caleb,” I state. “I am determined to be better, for you and for me. For our relationship.”
“That makes me happy pups,” Caleb leaves a gentle kiss on the top of my head. “So happy.”
I hold onto Caleb for as long as I can because I didn’t want anything to break us, not now. Not after everything.