I woke up to a room I didn’t recognise; it was a plain room filled with a wardrobe, nightstand and a queen sized bed which I am currently occupying. I was confused for a few minutes before yesterday’s events came back to me. Me changing in to my animal, running away from the King, dad and the Alpha’s, having Riley chase me, and finally changing back to human in Riley’s house. I blushed at the fact that Riley changed back so easily to human and seeing him naked.
Wonder if mine would ever go so smooth.
It will in time.
Who are you?
The voice in my head chuckled.
We met yesterday.
Are you my animal?
Indeed and I am very glad we finally got to meet. We were one when you were younger. But something happened and we got separated.
Why am I naked? I remembered going to bed in sweats.
It’s like Riley said, you changed back and forth last night.
I bit my lip, looking around the room for more clothes.
You might want to check the drawer inside the wardrobe.
Stiffly I got out of bed, a lot of muscles were aching I didn’t even know I had.
The wardrobe opened easily; I pulled out a pair of sealed boxers, another pair of sweats and a sweatshirt. I followed my nose to the kitchen; Riley was standing there in nothing but sweats. “Morning, take a seat.” He didn’t turn his gaze from the stove, he was making pancakes and the batter was going everywhere.
Blushing I took a seat on one of the two chairs available in the room. A few minutes after I sat down he put a plate in front of me with a high pile of pancakes. Ones with bacon, other ones with sausages and lots of others with just syrup. My stomach growled at the sight, Riley chuckled “Dig in. I know you’re starving.”
Wasting no more time I dug in and moaned in delight; this was the best meal I ever had. I was nearly finished when I noticed that Riley hadn’t eaten anything.
Oh crap, did I eat everything in his house?
“It’s okay Archie, I already had my breakfast.” I got a warm tingly feeling in my gut when he called me Archie; it spread out through my whole body making me shiver. By Riley’s reaction, he must have noticed because his eyes widened to the size of saucers, before quickly shoving his chair back with a clang startling me.
“This cannot be happening.” I had finished my breakfast and was about to carry the dishes to the sink when Riley stopped me “Don’t come near me!”
I paused at the resentment in his voice, nearly dropping the plate and the knife and fork. “Leave it on the table, and go. Go home now!” His voice changed slightly and became a little deeper. Like his animal was trying to surface. Placing it back on the table I nearly tripped over my own feet in my haste to leave. For some reason Riley’s angry demand to leave stung painfully in my chest; what had I done to displease him?
I had done nothing wrong as far as I knew. A low whimper escaped my throat as I looked back once and saw Riley stand there on his porch glaring at me. Much to my astonishment, I felt tears trek down my face, blurring my vision.
I wanted to go back to the cave and hide, but that was impossible; it was in Riley’s territory and I wasn’t welcome. Where do I go? I didn’t want to go home and have my father see me like this.
[Archie? Archie are you okay?]
[I don’t know. I feel weird… it hurts….my chest hurts.]
I could feel her concern growing by the minute.
[Come home, Archie. I, dad and Maeve are worried about you.]
I shook my head as if she could see me.
[Don’t be stubborn about this Archie; you need your family right now. So we can form a bond so we can always find you. You running off with that guard and refusing to come home freaked dad out. Please come home.]
I debated about going back, wondering what was the use of going back. I knew I had to, I need their support. Riley’s rejection made a hole open in my chest and it ached badly.
[I am coming home.]
I don’t remember very much what happened after I got home that day. I do remember Niamh’s tight hug and Maeve’s warm kisses. Her two young children never left my side, always asking me to help them with things or demand that I read them bedtime stories. I didn’t mind, it kept my mind off the aching in my chest.
Even though I bonded with my family as I should have done in the first place, the ache was still there. My animal didn’t really know how to handle it, it was silently whimpering in the background wondering what it had done wrong to upset Riley so badly. I knew it wasn’t his fault, it was mine. I knew it was, I had done something wrong and now my wolf as I dubbed him was paying the price.
For some odd reason, I couldn’t make myself throw out the sweats and sweatshirt Riley had given me. I literally couldn’t toss them in the bin. Every time I tried I froze; holding them above the can and shook my head before placing them back in the wardrobe. I would berate myself for being too sentimental about his clothes. They still smelled like him; a musky earthy scent.
I found myself sniffing at it sometimes and imagine Riley being in the room with me. That seemed to sooth the ache a little until I remember what happened the morning after and the ache would return tenfold. The worst was being forced to attend Pack meetings and actually have him in the same room with me. Somehow I always seem to smell his scent, no matter how many people are in the room with us. The most embarrassing thing about it all is I get instantly hard when I smell it.
Dad had noticed it at one meeting and asked me about it afterwards. I said it was a scent in the room that made me like this and he smiled. He clapped me on the shoulder and said “Well you just found your mate. It was the same for me with your mom.”
Yet I wasn’t happy about it, I hadn’t told dad that it was Riley that made me feel this way. It was a good thing too if his reaction the other day was anything to go by I was already rejected before we even had a chance to make it work.
“Argie! Argie!” I was snapped out of my dark thoughts by Liam; one of Maeve’s kids. He and his younger sibling had made it their mission to keep me busy every day. I turn away slightly and look down at him.
He pouts and wiggles a little “Needs to pwee.” I looked back up at the slightly raised podium, the Alpha speaking doesn’t look to be finished anytime soon.
“Can’t you wait a little longer?” Liam stubbornly shakes his head, pouting and crossing his arms. Rolling my eyes, I ease out of my seat excusing us all the way until we reach the end of our seated row. Holding on to his tiny hand we make our way through the meeting hall, through a small corridor and into the bathroom. Once there I unbutton his shorts and help him on the toilet seat. Once he was done and we washed his hands, we make our way back to the meeting hall when we hear someone arguing.
I bit my lip in hesitation; we need to pass the room where the arguing is coming from and I am not sure I want to pass it. Riley’s in there arguing, and I don’t think I have it in me to not break down and cry once I see him.
I felt a tug on my hand as Liam presses himself into my leg and whimpers slightly.
“Let’s go back, Liam.” Seeing as he wasn’t moving, I scooped him up in my arms and walk past the room with the arguing. Just as I am about to pass the door opens and an irritated Riley steps out followed by an older woman. I stopped and stared at him; he seems just as surprised as me. I tried my hardest to avoid him every day.
Just as he is about to say something I find the strength to keep walking and not stand there quaking at them. I hide my face in Liam’s neck and he whimpers slightly, picking up on my depressed mood. My wolf wanted to stay there and press itself against Riley seeking comfort. The woman lets out a startled sound as I pass her, yet she openly stares at me in wonder.
I shake my headat the pleading in his tone.
I begged, almost coming undone.
[Just leave me alone]
I was sitting in what I kinda claimed as my territory within the vast territory that surrounds our house. It was a little space occupied by thorny bushes on all sides, keeping me well hidden from prying eyes. It was the perfect getaway from Niamh who since the meeting ended pestered me about my all of a sudden depressed mood.
As usual, I wasn’t in the mood to talk to her, she nagged to me through our Pack Link until Maeve had enough and told her to leave me alone for a while. I heard some rustling, I was pretty sure I was the only were within miles so I was shocked to see a pair of familiar blue eyes peered at me through a small gap in the thorny bush.
“We need to talk Archon.” Just hearing his voice sends my body into a frenzy.
[About what do we need to talk? There is nothing to talk about]
I didn’t trust my voice at all; it would most likely betray how badly he’s affecting me with just his mere presence. He sighed and rubbed his hand through his hair.
“We still need to talk about why I was so rude to you.” He insisted. I shrunk back and shook my head in denial when he reached his arms out to me. I hissed as a few thorns stabbed my sides, whining a little at the sting. I was still getting used to healing quickly, one of the first thing I noticed when I joined the Pack.
I was cutting bread into small pieces for Liam and Wallace when one of the two bumped into me making me cut the tip of my finger, by the time I had found a band-aid the wound had already healed.
Then I was stuck with two crying children believing they had amputated my finger; one of the few things we can’t regenerate, as long as the limb is still attached no matter what way. As long as there is a part still attached to the body it can be regenerated.
I really hope my heart can regenerate from all this Riley exposure.
“Please Archon, we really need to talk. Since you just became part of the Pack, you didn’t know why I reacted the way I did right?”
Does he want me to say it out loud?
He wants to explain why he did what he did. Why not let him? What do you have to lose?
“You don’t have to explain anything to me, Riley. Really I get it. There’s no need to rub any more salt into my wounds than you already have.”
I squeeze my eyes shut to keep the tears from falling. “Yo-you re-rejec-rejec….” My voice falters; for some reason I can’t say the word rejected, it seemed logged in my throat. No matter what I do it won’t leave my mouth.