The Betas' Mates

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Lyndon 6

Her parents glared at him as if it was all his fault. As if his mere presence was the reason their daughter was dying. Don understood that way of thinking, something his teachings about humans had empathized. They were quick to find blame in others than be objective.

He returned their accusing glares with calm acceptance, something that seemed to further infuriate them. “What did you do to her?” Her father demanded.

“He didn’t do anything dad.” Olivia tried to soothe, her voice frail.

“Amanda says you got sick once you saw them,” the man indicated both him and Will. “And now because of them being here you’re telling me you shifted and are now dying?”

“I...” she looked lost as she shifted pleading eyes to him.

Don didn’t know what to say. These Humans were so fragile both physically and emotionally. Were parents would’ve been asking for clarification and then would try for solutions instead of assigning blame. He knew if he reacted as a Were would his mate would die before they’d even hear of a solution. Still his wolf took exception.

A growl, low and menacing, vibrated in the room. He saw his mate’s eyes widen her fear as she realized the menacing sound was coming from him. Which she shouldn’t have been. As a Were herself she should’ve been aware of their nature, even if her own wolf had been dormant.

“Wait.” The man whose daughter had called them said from the doorway. The man was Elven but Don was sure even his daughter was unaware of the fact. Which he found puzzling but then Elves were strange beings and their reasoning dubious. “We need to concentrate on getting Liv better.” He stated.

Don met his eyes and nodded his agreement, though he couldn’t help but wonder what was in it for the Elf. He had the tawny red skin tone of the mountain Elves. His cheekbones high and sharp enough to cut glass. A long bridged and slightly wide nose gave him a regal bent which was supported by his high chinned posture.

He stood straight but without the puffed up stance that would’ve aggravated his wolf. His height was an inch or two shy of Don’s six feet five and his dark brown gaze was clear and decisive. He reminded Don of his own mother’s people which, he realized, made him want to trust the Elf.

“Can you help stabilize her?” The Elf asked.

Don could feel his jaw clenching. He hated that even as her mate he wasn’t the ideal person to help her. Though he could help her, it’d be dangerous to her in her weakened state.

“As a last resort.” Don stated.

“Why not?” Her mother demanded, her blue eyes taking on the calm of a professional interrogator.

“She’s never experienced the magic rich environment we live in. Which means she only has residual magic from her birth and before she came to the human world. If I were to hijack the alpha bond, she will likely die with how fragile she is.”

“So how do you plan to save her?”

“My friend has already left to find an alpha blood.” He stated.

He was slightly amused to note that aside from the Elf, none of the people here had noted that Will was no longer in the room. How could they not be aware of their environment like that?

“And if he can’t?” The Elf asked. “I know your kind do not like the human world so the probability of him finding an alpha is slim.”

“He wouldn’t have gone if we hadn’t sensed one nearby.” Don replied, hating that he had to tell beings who were - by Were reckoning - enemies who had yet to attack things about his kind.

“And what will you have to pay for this alpha to save her?”

His wolf leapt into being the dominant conscious, his rage at the insult saturating the air with violence. Don fought to hold them back, trying to let the wolf know the Elf was too ignorant to know what an insult he’d offered.

“We’re not like your kind.” Ly, his wolf ground out and only his great honor stopped him from outing the man as Elven. “We do not charge each other for important things. Every Werewolf is pack, moreso when we’re in enemy territory and we aid each other. Remember that.”

The Elf bared his neck in the Were way of showing apology, submission. “Forgive me beta, I didn’t know I was giving insult.”

While Ly was gratified enough to incline his head, Don was surprised the Elf had pinned his rank so well. This Elf, Don realized was powerful. Their kind had a way of hiding just how powerful they were. Though he seemed to not be able to distinguish between a beta and a Beta. If he even knew there was a distinction.

His wolf settled back into his watchful stance, leaving Don once again in charge of their actions. Don had studied the myths Humans had of his kind and knew they thought the wolf and Human were in a constant fight. The truth was, the Wolven side of them was rather reticent, content to let the Human be in charge unless there was a need.

He felt the apprehension that was suddenly in the air, even his mate when he looked at her seemed a bit wary if him. He noted that she looked even worse than she had a moment ago. He frowned. She seemed to be fading even faster.

“She won’t last long enough for the alpha will she?” The Elf asked.

“No.” Don agreed. Even though he was using their new bond to help sustain her, it wasn’t enough.

“No!” Liv’s mother wailed, holding her tighter unaware as she winced.

“Will an Elven artefact help?” The Elf asked, ignoring the crying mother, whose male was comforting her even as his eyes looked bleak.

Don hesitated. “What would you want for it?” He echoed the Elf’s earlier question.

The male gave a rueful smile. “Don’t you think it’d be a fitting apology for my earlier insult?”

Don raised a skeptical brow. The male smiled.

“We share a common ancestor, you and I, from the days when the mythkind were still Human.”

Don’s brow rose even higher.

The Elf laughed, a musical laugh that had Don wondering how Humans failed to note was inhuman. “Your kind can scent bloodlines up to five generations back, mine can sense kinship even to the beginning.”

The sense of his raised brow changed to astonishment. That was a vital piece of information, something few of his people, if any, knew.

“We still hold to the belief our Human brethren even now do. Family and friendships should be honored. Oliver and Harriet have been my friends for years.”

Don inclined his head in agreement. He became aware of the confusion in the faces of their audience. “You have my thanks.”

The male took a pendant from around his neck. It was an intricate pattern, like a Celtic knot and yet not. Delicate scroll work was etched on the leaf design of the pendant. When Don held it in his hand he felt the raw power that thrummed in it.

Unable to just trust the Elf, his wolf tested the power in the pendant to see if it might be harmful. He turned to his mate’s mother. “Will you give her to me?” He asked.

Tear stained eyes met his. “What are you going to do? Will that thing hurt her?”

“No. The artefact is imbued with magic. I will use it to give her enough strength to hold on for the alpha.”

“Why can’t you just help her? Why do you have to wait for this alpha?” Her mother questioned still holding on to her daughter.

Don wanted to rage at the woman for delaying him, but he understood her fear of the unknown. The Human female had suffered a few too many shocks that had led to her daughter now being at death’s door.

“An alpha blood is the only one capable of sustaining the sanity of a shifter during her first shift. If your daughter had shifted more than she did, she would’ve completely lost her mind. Given that she hasn’t been subjected to any magic, she would’ve died before even that.”

“So you can’t help her?” She pleaded.

“As a Beta, I can sustain a pack’s sanity but I can’t guide them through the change. I’ve been sustaining her but once she started the shift, she needs to finish it. Holding it back is draining what little strength she has.”

“But you said you could hijack the alpha bond.” The female protested.

Don worked hard not to grit his teeth. “As her mate, yes. But like I said it might kill her in her state.”

“Give her to him love.” His mate’s father said to his own.

“Do you really think so Oliver?” Her voice no longer was as confident as when she was interrogating him.

“Mum...” Liv pleaded even as her father nodded his head.

Don took his mate from her mother and sat down on her bed. Looking down at her, he smiled his reassurance. The smile she returned was strained and full of fear. “You’ll be okay.” He promised.

He felt the mating pull working on them, sparks of flames dancing against their skin from where they touched. She relaxed in his arms, her eyes now filled with trust. “Okay.” She whispered.

At that Don closed his eyes and focused on the amulet. He could feel the held breath of the room, as if everyone was terrified that even breathing might disturb him. Aligning himself with the magic in the pendant he drew it in, breathed it as he focused all he was to his mate.

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