I spend about five minutes in the hallway, pacing back and forth. I can’t quite believe this is happening. The shock starts to wear off and my breathing returns to normal.
I don’t know what happens now. The Four obviously know I am their mate, they got me this beautiful birthday present. The five interlocked rings represents us being together. But none of them have spoken to me about it. None of them have given me any clue of our mating, other than the constant eye contact.
I need answers. I need to know where we go from here.
The Four have a free now, like me. I go to the library but find it empty. I check out the study room, but I can’t see any of them. The common room is the last place on my list.
I push open the double doors and spot them instantly. At the very end of the room, the four of them are sitting around a circular table, nestled into an alcove for privacy.
“Emmie?” Sal says my name from my right.
I find him reclined on one of the chairs, a book in his hands.
“Are you alright?” He asks.
“Yeah,” I reply distractedly. “I’m fine.”
I walk past him, leaving him confused. I cross the room, heading towards The Four. They all look up at the same time. As usual, I struggle to read their expressions. It becomes easier as I get closer. There’s tension in their shoulders; they’re nervous.
Good. I want answers.
There’s happiness in their eyes, too. They must know that I’ve received my prophecy, that’s why I’m coming over to them. I reach the table and stop in front of it. No one says anything for a moment. My heart thumps loudly, I worry that they will hear it.
Lucio suddenly stands, surprising me. “Shall we talk somewhere private, Emery?”
I blink a couple of times, trying to process what he has said. His voice is smooth and rich and is doing all sorts of things to my insides.
“Yes,” I manage to reply.
The other three stand. Lucio walks out of the room first; I follow him, and the three others follow closely behind. The students that are in the room watch us go with interest. I know that Sal will be grilling me on this the next time I see him.
Lucio turns into an empty classroom and holds the door open for me. I mumble a thank you and step into the room. I sit on one of the tables. The Four enter the room and stand in front of me, only a metre or so from where I am perched. I swallow nervously and try to find my courage.
“I just received my prophecy,” I tell them.
They look at me with interest.
“What did you see, mi amor?” Esteban asks.
I don’t speak Spanish, but I can understand that. A blush spreads over my cheeks at the thought of my dream.
“I saw you…all four of you.”
They share a look, smiling triumphantly. For the first time, I see their hard exteriors fade. They look genuinely happy and relaxed, it’s strange.
“We knew it was going to be you, Emery,” Lucio says proudly. “We had a feeling from the first time we all saw you.”
“Why didn’t you say anything?” I ask him and then turn my attention to the others as well. “You got me this present, but you never told me I am your mate.”
I hold the rings around the necklace between my fingers, running the pads of my thumb and forefinger back and forth over the shiny metal.
“We didn’t want to scare you off,” Malvolio answers huskily. “We had no idea how you were going to react.”
“Everyone thinks that we are mated to four different girls. No one knows that we are destined to share a mate,” Esteban adds. “Well, except for Salvador.”
He knows. He knew it was going to be me. On Monday, on top of the roof…he knew!
“How are you feeling, angel?” Oro speaks for the first time. “Now that you know it is us that you are mated to.”
I lick my lips as I think of my answer to his question.
“I was shocked at first,” I confess to them and look down at my hands on my lap. “I never thought that I would have four mates.”
“But now?” Lucio presses, hope clear in his voice.
“I-I don’t hate the idea,” I reply softly.
Malvolio steps forward and grasps my chin. He gently grips my chin and pushes my head back, so that I am forced to meet his cyan-blue eyes.
“You don’t hate the idea?” He repeats. His tone is calm, but I can see that his eyes are anything but. They are two swirling whirlpools of hurt. “That is not the response we were hoping for, Emery.”
I open my mouth to reply, and his eyes drop to my lips. He slowly releases my chin as if gaining control over himself again. My skin is tingling where he touched it.
“I’m sorry,” I respond quietly. “I didn’t meant to offend you. It’s just…I don’t know you…at all.”
Lucio steps forward. “That will change, mi amor. Now that you know we are meant to be together, we can start getting to know one another. For starters, you can join us for dinner in our dorm tonight.”
Dinner, alone, with the four of them? That sounds terrifying.
“Really?” I reply timidly.
They all smile widely. “Yes,” Esteban responds.
Oro checks his watch. “We still have time before the end of our free period. Will you stay and talk to us, angel?”
Angel. That’s the second time he’s called me that. The term of endearment is warming.
“Yes,” I answer him. “I’ll stay.”
If they are my mates, I should get to know them. Besides, I have been wanting to know more about these mystery boys since I first saw them.
“Can you tell me about your prophecies?” I ask them. “You obviously got yours last year. I’m sorry that you had to wait so long for me.”
Lucio’s eyes soften. “It is okay, mi amor. You are worth the wait.”
“You can tell us about where you were last year tonight, if you like,” Esteban says, and the smile drops from my face. Noticing my reaction, he continues. “Or not. No pressure.”
“In answer to your question,” Oro starts. “We each had our own prophecy. For example, I am an Elemental. I can control metal; I can melt it and make it move with my mind.”
That makes sense. His eyes are liquid gold, his name is Oro.
“But after I had received my Elemental vision, it turned into my Amare one. Visions are tricky, they don’t always give you a clear picture,” he explains. “I didn’t see your face or any distinguishing features. I knew that your hair was light. But mostly, it was a glimpse of me and my brothers sharing you, having you in our bed.”
“You saw our faces in your vision, right?” Malvolio asks and I nod in response. “That is because you were going to meet us soon after your vision. We were not given more details on you because the Gods knew it would be another year before we met.”
“What vision did you have, Malvolio?” I ask him.
He smiles. “Please, mi amor, call me Mal. I am an Elemental, too. I can control water to a certain extent, although it is a body of water that I can control, not rain.”
I turn to Esteban. “And you have an animalius bond with wolves?”
“Yes,” he replies. “That is why I am more…territorial than the others. I see my brothers as my pack, like a wolf would.”
“Don’t packs have Alphas?” I question.
Esteban smirks and looks over at Lucio.
“That would be me,” he says. “I have an animalius bond too, with snakes.”
I can see that about him. Lucio has this quiet aura about him, but, unlike Oro, he looks like he could snap at any instant and kill you without hesitation. His silver hair and red, almond-shaped eyes add to the snake-like vibe.
“Did you all see the same vision of me?”
They all nod at the same time.
“Yes, angel. We all saw the same clip in our minds. The same one that has been replaying in our dreams ever since you came to the Academy a week ago,” Esteban says.
“I imagine that you have seen it, too,” Mal adds with a smirk. “Tell me, in the vision, are you blindfolded?”
I swallow hard. Holy shit. They experienced the same dream? They dreamt about the four of them…touching me. At the same time. The realisation must be evident on my face because the four of them chuckle in amusement.
“I think your pink cheeks answer my question,” Mal replies amusedly.
I clear my throat and rub my lips together. I answer quietly, “Yes.”
“There is nothing to be embarrassed about, angel,” Mal reassures me.
His reassurance does nothing to calm my pink face. In the corridor, I hear the bell go. When I look up, The Four look disappointed that our time has come to an end.
“Meet us in the intersection between the dorms at five thirty,” Lucio orders.
“Is that alright, mi amor?” Esteban checks.
I nod and slide down from the desk. “Yes, that’s fine.”
“Good. We’ll see you later, angel,” Lucio responds.
He holds the door open for me and I walk out of the room. My hands are shaking with excitement and adrenaline as I rush back to the dorm.
Wait until the girls hear about this!