We brought him back in his cage to the pack house. I did not like it but it was the safest way for him and for us. I was the only one who could go near his cage or he would become restless again. I whispered sweet nothings and tried for soothing words. It seemed to work so he was not completely lost. Good. That was a relief.
I mind-linked my mother as soon as we were close enough to the pack house. She came out running so fast that she almost tripped on the stairs in front of the house and I bit my bottom lip to stifle a laugh. She looked at Maximus and then at me and she gaped.
"Yeah. That's a miracle that he's still alive. He's my mate so I need to heal him." I explained.
"Oh honey... This will be difficult even for you. You might be a healer and his mate but it looks like his wolf took over long ago. I don't even know if he has a mind anymore..."
Healers were rare in our community but I was born with the gift. I could feel the emotions of wolves and soothe their auras. That usually calmed them down and healed their visible wounds.
"He does. Maximus is stronger than that. I know he is." I said looking at him.
She looked at me with pity but also hope in her eyes. That was the weirdest combination. I smiled a crooked smile at her before saying.
"Let me try to bring him forward first."
"It would be for the best. The wolf needs to go."
I whipped my head to see my father arrive. Ex Alpha Julius was still fit for his age and retirement suited him. He had deep blue eyes that seemed to hold some mysterious knowledge. His light brown hairs were cut short and he passed his hand through them as he walked to me.
"The wolf needs to go Helena." He repeated.
I could use my Alpha power to force the shifts of my wolves. Maybe the link to Maximus was severed and it would not work but I had to try. I closed my eyes and focused on Maximus. I searched through the maze of links inside my head and found a shallow one. I touched it with my aura and the wolf growled. Good. He was not a rogue yet. I sighed of relief and focused all my power on that link.
"Shift" I commanded.
The wolf growled but then I heard the shift. It worked! I could almost dance right now! Except it would be too out of caracter for me lately and I was Alpha so I would dance later in private.
Where the wolf was a few seconds ago now stood a big man. He gained some muscles since the last time I saw him. He was looking like a gym addict but not like a bodybuilder either. That would affect his speed and I was sure the hunters did not want that.
His skin was still this perfect tan in every season and his raven black hairs looked as good as ever. The scars were more visible now without the fur. That made the rage build up again inside of me but I needed to focus on my mate right now. I would let it out later. I always did.
He lifted his gaze to meet mine and I saw that his eyes were still golden. Was he mad? He did not look mad. He looked... Deep in thought. Werewolves would only show their wolve's eyes if they were under strong emotions.
He looked around him and a low growl came out of his mouth. I took a step forward to make him focus his gaze back on me. His eyes used to be a perfect hazel with yellow hints, like sunflowers. I loved his eyes. I hoped that I would see them again if I could calm him down.
"Maximus." I called. "You'll be all right. I won't let them hurt you."
He tilted his head to the side and I could see his chest go up and down as he tried to calm down.
"Mate?" He said unsure.
I nodded my head to him and he seemed perplexed. Well. Not really what you were expecting from your mate when you met him but... He went through a lot. I needed to be patient.
"Yes. I'm yours." I said. "Let me get you inside. We have much to talk about. Can you promise me not to jump on anyone?"
He looked at the others and shook his head before kneeling in the cage and taking his head in his hands.
"I can't. I might kill again if I get out."
That broke my heart to see him like this but I had no time to dwell on it. I needed to make sure that he was safe.
"Take him to the cells." My father said.
I growled at him. The cells were made with silver. Did he think my mate had not suffered enough? He turned his cool gaze on me and said still calm.
"That's for his safety. When he feels better, we'll take him inside I promise."
"He suffered enough father. I don't want him in pain again."
"Helena. Maximus will need time to heal and we can't let him be a danger to this pack. I regret what they did to him but we have to."
I bit my bottom lip out of frustration. I knew he was right but... I wanted Maximus with me. I needed him. Hearing these words, Maximus lifted his gaze to me before saying.
"Helena? Is that you? Are you real?"
I widened my eyes at these questions. Did he think it was all in his head? I passed my hand through the bars and touched his shoulder hesitantly. The bars were made of silver and it burned my skin but I needed him to feel me. The tingles of the bond shot up as soon as I touched his skin making me sigh. He gasped at the feeling and his eyes widened before he started to cry.
"It's really you."
"Yes sweetheart, it's really me. Oh Maximus... I'm so sorry..."
The tears rolled down my cheeks again and he held my hand. With the help of the warriors we put him in the largest cell and I did not like that one bit. It was not his fault. He just needed help. Maybe he would open up to me if it was just the two of us. I could only hope.