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[Book currently on hold]
I stared at myself in the mirror and cringed. I hated that dress and never thought I’d ever be wearing it when Maven and I bought it. “Why do I have to go?” I mumbled with a sigh and gave myself one last look. The blue knee-length dress was pretty. I just felt too exposed and uncomfortable.
“Mia come on, your dad is waiting,” I heard my mom call as she made her way into my apartment.
“I’m coming,” I yelled and grabbed my purse and my phone. We were going to the Moonstone’s pack victory celebration which I was forced to attend.
Usually, Scarlett was the one attending those events with my parents, swaying her hips and fluttering her lashes at any breathing male she saw in front of her. But ever since she betrayed our pack and ended up getting killed, I was forced to attend.
It had been more than four years since it happened, I didn’t really care even though she was my sister. We were probably the world's greatest enemies. However, I didn’t know that with her death, I would be forced to take her place and attend those useless events.
“You look beautiful, maybe you’ll even find yourself a man,” my mom said with a wink while holding my apartment door open. I rolled my eyes and made my way to the car where my dad was waiting. A man my ass. It was an almost two-hour drive and I already felt like dying. My mom was so eager for me to find a mate because she thought it would help me. But I didn’t think so.
We made it on time. Crystal chandeliers spiraled down from the arching white ceiling, illuminating the glimmering golden walls. The place itself was breathtaking. But I just didn’t feel like I belonged there.
“What even is this? A victory party for their pack but the Alpha himself isn’t here. And what does our pack have to do with this celebration… Or me to be exact?” I kept rambling to my mother as I gripped the wine glass in my hand.
The hall was packed. It was so loud with people talking, laughing, and gossiping. I felt like there was no personal space whatsoever. The wine was all I had to loosen myself up and stop myself from constantly biting my lip and looking pained.
“Why can’t you ever enjoy one event? You’re the Alpha’s daughter and Moonstone just got their land back, that’s why you’re invited,” my mom said with a burning glare that didn’t affect me anymore.
“You know why I hate these places,” I hissed and felt my wolf stir, ready to protect me. My mom gave me a sad smile before taking the glass from my hand.
“You have to get over it Mia,” she said. My eyes went wide and I felt like she had just stabbed me. Of all people, she was the most understanding. But there she was telling me to get over the trauma that was unforgettable.
“I’m sorry…” She mumbled and I completely avoided her gaze. “There’s the Alpha you just bashed for the entire time we were here,” she said and nodded her head upwards.
I sighed and hugged myself as I looked up at the two doors opening. Three people appeared from behind the closed doors and began descending the stairs. The place went silent and all eyes were on them. From seeing the Alpha for the first time anyone could tell how powerful and how much authority he held.
He had the kind of face that stopped you in your tracks. I guess he was used to that, the sudden pause in a people’s natural expression when they looked his way followed by overcompensation with a bow of the head.
My heart stopped when my wolf began purring in my head and running around in circles. My stomach churned as I heard her howl. Calling her mate. That couldn't be happening. It couldn't be me of all people.
I was baffled. I didn’t know what I was feeling as the place came to life with the voices of people again but all I could hear was the sound of my own heartbeat ringing in my ears. My eyes were glued to him and I saw his face contort with confusion as he lifted his head up as if to get a better whiff of whatever he was smelling.
He began searching around and all too fast his eyes landed on mine. The instant attraction between us was like an invisible thread in the air that no one else saw or felt. It was swirling between us as we gazed at each other, my heart banging against my chest, begging to be let out.
The smallest hint of his subtle cologne invaded my senses and I was transported to a field of daydreams and fantasies I never had. I had to be delusional, it couldn’t be true. I didn’t want it to be true. He wasn't my mate.
I could feel his eyes burning through me as he tried to make his way towards me. I felt like everyone was looking at me but I hoped that was just my imagination. He was just a few feet away. My heart was going crazy and I was sure everyone could hear it, I had to leave.
“Mia!” I heard my mother’s voice and mentally cursed myself. “Don't be rude. Come back,” she said and held my arm, stopping me from walking away.
“No mom. I’ll come back in a few, I promise,” I said and pried her fingers off my arm before storming out.
I rushed past the people, shoving them and making way for myself. I could feel all their eyes on me as I made it outside into the darkness and shook my head.
“No-no,” I mumbled as I let out a deep breath. I rushed around the building while massaging my temples trying to convince myself I was just imagining.
“Fuck,” I hissed and hugged myself as I looked up at the beauty in front of me. Wherever I was, it was pretty. I took a deep breath as I admired the trees in front of me. The wooden arch with vines growing over it. I was trying to look at every detail in front of me, memorize them. Just anything that could distract me from those piercing eyes and stop my brain from thinking.
"Aurora please calm down," I whispered to my wolf but she just kept on jumping around. I had never seen her so happy.
“I never thought when I see my mate she’d run away.” I heard a voice say from behind me. He had a deep voice, one that gave him an air of solid confidence and was so very easy on the ears.
My eyes widened as goosebumps lined my skin. Slowly turning my body around I came face to face with none other than him. The Alpha.
“I’m not your mate,” I said as I looked up and into his piercing eyes. Trying my best to ignore the tension between us and the literal sparkles around us. Light brown eyes always carried so many subtle hues, and I could see all of them in his despite it being dark.
“You’re saying an Alpha is wrong about who his mate is?” He asked with a raised eyebrow, snapping me out of my trance. So the moon Goddess not only decided to pair me with an Alpha from another pack, but a cocky one too.
“Please, you’re so full of yourself. I’m going inside.” I masked my uncontrollable emotions and tried to walk past him, only to feel a strong arm pulling me back and caging me against the wall.
My hands brush against his and I immediately feel an illicit sparkle. I quickly pulled my hand away and felt my face flush as my heart hammered against my chest. In just seconds, he made me feel things no one had ever made me feel.
In that intimate space, so close to the nape of his neck, I already knew the scent of his woodsy cologne was something I’d always crave.
“What’s your name?” He asked as I held my breath. I felt like we were looking into each other’s souls. Like he knew my fears and I hated it. I felt so vulnerable in front of him.
“Move,” I hissed and tried to duck under his arms but failed. “Please move,” I mumbled feeling my voice shake. I had never felt so overwhelmed in years. But for some reason, his presence didn’t terrify me, which is why I knew he was right. I was his mate.
“Not until you tell me your name. Or I could just go inside and ask your Alpha.” He shrugged.
“I’m not telling you my name. Reject me. You don’t need me,” I said and lifted my gaze to meet his. He looked at me with furrowed brows and I could hear his heart beating just as fast as mine.
“You don’t know what I need. I need my Luna.”
My eyes widened and I smacked his arm. Trying to put behind me the vulnerable Mia and instead show the trainer Mia.
“I’m not your Luna! Now let me go inside. Aren’t you missing your damn party!” I hissed and walked past him. Making sure to create as much space between us as possible.
“First of all, I did not want this fucking celebration. Second, you just smacked me,” he began saying as his footsteps echoed behind me.
“Belle,” he called after me in an accent. Unwanted shivers ran through my body but I just continued walking, ignoring that my body was freezing with the cold breeze outside.
I was too focused on escaping him that I didn't look in front of me and bumped into someone. I groaned and looked up to find my mother looking at me with wide eyes, “Mia! What got into you running off like that. You’re going to freeze. Are you crazy?” she said and I mentally cursed my luck.
“Oh, Alpha Damian.” She nodded her head slightly when she looked behind me.
“Luna,” he said. His warm, and soft eyes long gone as he stood beside me. Intoxicating me with his closeness. “I was just talking to… Mia,” he said and gave me a stupid smirk.
My mom just stared at us looking as baffled as ever. Her mouth opened and closed like a fish as she tried to find her words. “Mia? My Mia? You,” she mumbled and kept looking between us.
“Mom you’re going to get cold, let’s go inside,” I said and tried to pull her inside but she stood rooted in her spot like she was glued to the floor.
“She’s your Luna?” She asked in a low voice like she couldn’t believe what she was seeing. I quickly turned and glared at him, daring him to say I was his Luna one more time. He looked at me with a raised eyebrow before looking back at my mom and nodding.
“She is. I’ve found her,” he said, looking so pleased as if he was finally at peace. Little did he know the baggage I was.
My mom erupted and began squealing so loudly. The immense embarrassment took over my features and I instantly felt my face flush.
“Mom!” I hissed and tried to calm her down. My day was going horribly, it just kept getting worse and she was grabbing attention.
“I’m not your Luna. Your Luna is inside,” I said a little too harshly and dragged my mother inside. Leaving him behind in the cold. I sounded like a jealous mate. But he did walk in with a petite blonde woman that looked like his mate.
“She’s not my Luna,” he said with a low growl and stalked after me. "Stop running away. Because I swear I'll find you."
“You don’t want me, Damian,” I said and looked into his eyes challengingly. Completely unaware of the fact that we were now around other people. He opened his mouth to answer back but was stopped by my father walking over to him.
“Alpha Dominic,” he replied with a fake smile and nodded his head.
They began talking and I took that as a chance to swiftly sneak away from them and hide in the refreshments corner. Damian’s eyes looked so different as his gaze followed me all the way to the back. Usually, I would drop my gaze, but for some reason with him, I couldn’t look away. I was drawn to him. For once, I felt like I was being watched over.
“All eyes are on you tonight. Where do you come from?” A gruff voice asked, instantly making me uncomfortable. I dropped the fork I was using to get myself refreshments and turned my head around slowly. Don’t let him know you’re tense. I kept repeating to myself as I eyed the man in front of me.
Aurora was growling. I knew if I had no control over her she would've jumped out and ripped him apart before he spoke again.
He looked scruffy with a scar running down his face and I could literally see the negative energy radiating off him. The moments I just experienced with Damian were long forgotten as my mind kept going to dark places I didn’t want to be in while staring at him.
“What are you a mute?” He asked a little too harshly. My breath turned cold and my heart began thundering in my chest but not the same way it beat around Damian just moments ago. I pressed my legs together and dug my fingers into my palm, a habit I had whenever I felt uncomfortable.
“I can talk. I just choose not to talk to someone like you,” I spat out, trying to look confident but he just smirked. Like he knew I was scared shitless.
“Well, then I guess you don’t know me,” he said. My eyes began searching around frantically for Goddess knows what. I just needed to get away from that man. I kept searching for my parents or Damian who I didn’t even know. I just needed anyone that could possibly save me from that man. I could feel the fear in my chest waiting to take over when I couldn’t find any of them.
“Hey, come I want to show you something.” A random girl said and took my hand in hers, dragging me away. I let out a breath I had no idea I was holding and my other hand immediately went to my chest.
“You're shaking. Are you okay?” She asked.
“I’m fine. Thank you for saving me,” I said with a shaky voice and felt the place begin to spin around me. It had been a while since I'd felt so unsafe.
“Mia?” I heard my mom’s voice along with Damian’s before their hands began waving in front of my face frantically.
“Celeste, what happened?” I heard him ask as my vision turned blurry. It was as if my heart had suddenly stopped beating and all the blood had run down to my feet.
“Edwin-” she began to say when I felt sick and the world went black.
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