The Beta’s Daughter

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Chapter Three

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Bria’s POV.

I work in the clinic for six hours the next day. I’m tired and in desperate need of a shower when my shift ends. I return to my room and clean up.

Sage texts me, inviting me out for dinner with Lorenzo and Rhett. I feel excited at the prospect of seeing my mate again.

The weather is cooler, so I dress warmly. I wear a figure-hugging jumper, hoping to catch Rhett’s eye.

It seems to work. When I come downstairs, he’s leaning against the building outside. He’s smoking with one foot propped up on the wall he’s leaning on. His dark brown eyes look me up and down and then back up again.

Before either of us can speak, Sage pulls up in her car.

‘Get in losers,’ she quotes and I roll my eyes at her.

Lorenzo is riding shotgun, leaving Rhett and I to get in the back.

I scoff when she pulls into the queue for the drive-thru of a fast food restaurant.

‘I thought you said we were going for dinner?’ I ask her and she shrugs.

‘This is dinner.’

Rhett chuckles. ‘Come on princess, a burger won’t kill you.’

I roll my eyes at him. Just for that comment, I order two double cheeseburgers, fries and chicken nuggets.

His eyes widen at all of the food on my lap. I can see the doubt in his eyes, he doesn’t believe I’ll finish all of this.

Ha, watch me.

Sage drives us to a lookout spot and parks the car. It’s started to cloud over, the swollen clouds promising imminent rain, so we stay in the car.

The four of us demolish our food. I lick my fingers as I finish the last of my fries.

Rhett nods at me with respect.

‘That is my kind of woman.’

He has no idea what his comment does to me.

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I’m back at the clinic on Monday, but I visit my parents for dinner.

Although it’s chaos with my four siblings, it’s nice to be back with them for a few hours. I miss them at the pack house, but honestly, I would never get anything done.

My father has even had to give up some of his Beta duties. He won’t make my mum do all of the work by herself, he knows she wants to work, too. Together, they manage my three brothers and sister.

I offer to help out but they always refuse, they’d both rather I focus on my future. I’m secretly glad, too. I love my siblings, but no way in hell am I having five children. I don’t know what my parents were thinking.

Why keep trying when they got it so right with the first one?

I spend my free time at the library on Tuesday and Wednesday, helping out Miss Meadows. I know I’m lame, I have no life, but I’m happy.

I have the clinic in the afternoon. I arrive after my lunch for my six hour shift until 7pm.

It is relatively uneventful, until Rhett Tiercel is brought in with Lance Whitson. The two of them are bloody and bruised. My heart immediately throbs. My mate is hurt, so I am hurt for him. It pains me to see him like this.

‘What happened?’ I ask them when they enter the clinic.

‘That c*nt got what he deserved,’ Lance swears, making me wince. I’m not a fan of the c word.

Rhett glares at him.

‘Fuck off asshole, you started this when you mouthed off about me and Enzo,’ he growls.

Another nurse comes over, having overheard and sensed the tension.

‘Mr Whitson, follow me. Mr Tiercel, Bria will tend to your wounds.’

I’m glad she divided us up that way, I don’t want anyone else’s hands on my mate.

‘Come on Rhett, follow me,’ I tell him and lead him over to one of the empty beds.

I gesture for him to sit down on it and I draw the curtain around us.

‘Do you mind if I check your injuries?’ I ask him. His dark eyes gaze intensely at me, he shakes his head.

‘Okay,’ I say and step closer to him.

I inhale his sweet smell and wish I hadn’t. This is going to make it hard to concentrate. His lip is busted and he’s going to need stitches for the cut on his forehead.

‘Are there any traumas anywhere else?’ I ask him.

In answer, Rhett grabs the bottom of his t-shirt and pulls it up, over his head. I gulp loudly. This is the first time I’ve seen his naked chest.

Moon Goddess, help me.

Even bruised and cut, his golden, muscular chest is the thing of dreams. My whole mouth goes dry and my heart quickens.

‘Uh, nurse?’ Rhett’s voice pulls me back to reality. He grins at me, knowing he’s caught me checking him out.

‘If we could focus on the task at hand,’ he says with a wink.

I huff and pull the cart over. I sit next to him on the bed.

‘This cut is going to need stitches, as is the one on your head. The rest are superficial. Hold on whilst I get you some painkillers.’

‘It’s okay, I don’t need them,’ he replies. ‘This isn’t my first fight, I’ll be fine.’

At his request, I don’t retrieve any pain meds. He remains perfectly still as I clean and stitch up his wounds. He’s the ideal patient.

It’s hard being this close to him, smelling his intoxicating scent. His eyes remain on me the entire time, making me blush the entire time.

When I’m all done, he pulls his shirt back on.

‘Thank you, Bria.’ He stands up and goes to draw the curtain back, but he hesitates.

He looks over his shoulder at me, his face is pained.

‘Bria...’ That one word has my knees quaking. ‘If Alpha Byron asks you what happened-’

I cut him off before he can ask.

‘I’ll tell him that Lance picked a fight with you,’ I finish for him.

He looks at me with surprise. ‘I was only going to ask that you tell him it was both our faults. I don’t want Lance blaming it all on me, but I did hit him back.’

I shrug. ‘He provoked you, he wanted a fight. It’s his fault.’

Rhett’s eyes soften and something akin to gratitude shines in his hands. ‘I don’t know why you’d do that for me, Bria, but thank you.’

I don’t say another word. My heart hurts when he leaves.

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Thursday and Friday are uneventful. My time is spent at the clinic, or studying for my nurse’s qualification in the library.

On Saturday, Sage drags me out to a party again. At the promise of Rhett being there, I agree to come.

I put extra effort into my outfit and my make-up, wanting to get Rhett’s attention, even if he can’t feel the bond.

She and Lorenzo are locked lips and rubbing against one another when I arrive. I would grimace, but I’m too busy wallowing in jealousy.

They marked and mated each other the day of Sage’s eighteenth birthday. Their mating period was a day, it was that quick. It’s not even rare either, most mates complete the process within a few days, a week at most.

And here I am, I’ve known Rhett is my mate for exactly a week now, and I’ve not let him know.

The full moon is in eight days. The spell will fade then and he’ll find out.

Now that he is friends with me, (I guess that’s what we are?), I need to get him to talk about mates and confirm whether or not he wants to reject his when he meets her.

The happy couple manage to pull themselves away from each other long enough to see me standing there.

‘Oh, hey! You came! Do you want a drink?’ Sage asks and starts pouring me one without waiting for my answer.

I thank her and accept the cup.

‘Come on, everyone’s over here,’ Lorenzo tells me.

I follow the couple over to a more secluded area. There’s another campfire going in the little clearing, with a load of plastic chairs surrounding it.

Annie, Jordan, Rhett and annoyingly, Mona, are sat on the chairs, talking. They all look up when we arrive.

Lorenzo and Sage sit down next to each other, leaving two spare chairs for me. One is next to the happy couple, the other is next to Rhett, with Mona on his other side.

He smiles at me and nods at the chair next to him. My stomach flips with excitement and I happily sit down next to him.

He goes to say something to me, but Mona asks him a question, drawing his attention back to her. I decide to chat to Annie across the fire, instead.

I try to ignore the blatant flirting going on next to me. I repeatedly remind myself that Rhett does not know I’m his mate. He has no idea who I am to him, he is not doing this on purpose.

Mona giggles at something Rhett says and leans in to kiss him. I leap up from my seat, startling them both and stopping the kiss. I stomp towards the party.

‘Bri? Where you going?’ Sage calls.

I glance over my shoulder to see that Rhett and Mona are watching me. He has a concerned frown on his face.

‘I need more alcohol,’ I reply bluntly.

I pour myself a stronger drink and grip the cup in my hands. I glance over at the clearing, considering rejoining my friends. I don’t want to whilst Mona is there.

I choose to go deeper into the forest. There’s a rock formation out here that’s shaped like a mini pride rock from Lion King. I used to love climbing it as a kid and now, it’s kind of like my ‘think rock’ from the DUFF.

I walk out to it and climb to the top. I’m impressed with myself for not spilling any of my drink whilst climbing.

I sip my drink and consider my choices. Some might say I’m being selfish, keeping this from my mate. I always do the right thing, what’s expected of me. Excuse me if, for once in my life, I want to do the selfish, wrong thing.

I’m trying to protect my heart, I don’t think you can blame me for that.

I make up my mind to tell Sage tomorrow. She’s my best friend, her advice is worth listening to.

‘Mind if I join you?’ A voice startles me. I know from the all-too-familiar rasp, who it belongs to.

I look down to see Rhett Tiercel standing below me, hands in his pockets, signature smirk on his handsome face.

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