Blood Stained

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Chapter 19 - Time Heals All

Moira POV

I stared at the wolf lying unconscious in the cage. I had cleaned his wounds and patched them as best I could. I’d plied him full of pain relief and antibiotics, the rest was now up to him.

“He hasn’t woken up yet?”

I turned around to see Jayce standing behind me, arms crossed in front his chest. It had been a week since Quinn’s twentieth and since taking Mason into our care.

Quinn had taken a while to recover from her ordeal. The psychological pain and physical pain she endured from the multiple shifts took their toll. Physically she had recovered but mentally she still had some healing to do. I’d offered her my spare room while she adjusted, it was obvious to see that she wasn’t ready to face Jayce yet or her still comatose father.

Jayce hadn’t fought me at all on the decision but he insisted on either himself of Dominic remaining guard on my house twenty-four-seven. Now that he knew what Quinn was and the enormity of what that meant, he wasn’t going to risk her running away again or being attacked under his nose.

“Not yet. You look like shit, you should get some rest”

Jayce laughed and shook his head.

“I’m fine. How’s Quinn?”

“She is doing better than yesterday, everyday is an improvement. It’s just a lot for her at the moment. She’s been through a lot”

Jayce nodded and sat down on a chair next to Mason’s cage.

“I still can’t get my head around it” he sighed, “we knew she was special but this is something else. This changes everything, everything we have ever known about shifters and the way we work”

I completely agreed with him. I had so many questions for Quinn but she wasn’t ready for them yet. The physician in me wanted to study her, wanted to test her, wanted to find out everything about her. But the mother in me wanted to protect her and shield her from anymore pain.

“Have you thought about how you’re going to tell the rest of the pack?” I asked.

Jayce sighed and leant back in his chair.

“I don’t know. Cameron and Matt have come around to the idea. My father played a massive part in that. Brad is being an arse, nothing new there though. I just don’t know how the rest of the pack will react”

“How are you reacting?”

Jayce hadn’t said much about his thoughts on Quinn’s status since the night it happened. I had my concerns, obviously, but not about his human side. I could tell Jayce was accepting of whatever Quinn was but his wolf was a different story.

“She is my mate. What kind or kinds of animal she is changes nothing”

“Does your wolf feel the same way?”

Jayce shrugged and stood up. I could tell he was frustrated and on edge.

“My wolf will come around. I just need to see Quinn, I need to speak to her, to be in the same room as her”

“So the connection is still strong?”

Jayce laughed and ran his fingers through his black hair.

“It’s stronger than anything I’ve ever felt. I don’t know if I can go much longer knowing she is right there but I can’t see her”

I reached up and placed my hand on his shoulder and gave him a little smile. The poor guy was hurting. As much of a brute as he was, he was still a softy and a romantic at heart. Now I just needed him to remind Quinn of that.

“I’ll speak to her. I can’t promise anything but I’ll try”

Quinn sat cross legged on the bed, her eyes closed and a peaceful look on her face. I watched as she breathed in and out, deeply and slowly. I had taught her some basic meditation techniques to practice when she was feeling on edge.

Quinn hadn’t shifted again since the night of her birthday. Her body had tried to, several times, due to the level of emotion she was feeling within herself. I had needed to keep her animal pretty well sedated for the first few days to give her human side a chance to come to terms with everything that had happened. Yesterday I had begun to wean Quinn off the sedative so it was important that she remained calm and practiced her mindfulness so not to bring on a shift unintentionally.

“How are you feeling today?” I asked, reluctantly breaking Quinn from her trance.

She opened her eyes and looked across the room at me. She smiled sadly and sighed.

“I don’t know” she murmured, “Any change with Mason?”

I walked over to the bed and sat down on the edge. Quinn hadn’t been to see her father yet. I could understand why and how hard it would be to see him in that state but sitting in my spare room, meditating, was not going to fix it and if her father’s health declined any further the negative affect of Quinn could potentially be catastrophic.

“His stats are up. His wounds are healing. There doesn’t appear to be any infection...”

“He still hasn’t woken, has he?”

I shook my head and took Quinn’s hand in mine.

“I have an idea, one that might help”

Quinn’s eyes brightened and she squeezed my hand.

“What is it?” She asked hopefully.

“It requires you to come down to the clinic and sit with him. Talk to him. Just be there for him”

Quinn released my hand and entwined her fingers in her lap. The smile had gone from her face, I could tell she was torn.

“Quinn. Your father has no one. He has had no one for twenty years. I know he is in there somewhere otherwise you would be dead...he would have killed you in the forest that night”

I knew I was asking a lot of Quinn right now but it was the only thing I could think of. Medically I had done everything I could do. Mason’s healing had slowed and I was worried without some sort of intervention that he was going to give up. Quinn was that intervention.

“I can’t watch him die” Quinn whispered, a tear sliding down her cheek.

I placed my hand on Quinn’s knee softly.

“If this works, you won’t have to”

Quinn POV

I knelt on the floor next to my father’s cage. He lay on a blanket, unconscious and hooked up to a monitor and IV bag. It was hard to see him like this, even though I didn’t know him. The connection I’d felt in the forest had been powerful, I could feel the blood that ran through his veins was the same as the blood that ran through mine.

“Can I touch him?” I asked, looking up to Moira who stood next to me.

“Of course. I’ll give you some space. I’ll be in my office if you need me”

Moira walked out of the room, closing the door behind her. I looked back to my father and slowly reached my hand through the bars. I held my breath as I softly touched his paw but he didn’t react. I breathed out and began to stroke his fur.
I felt the connection again and closed my eyes. My heart hurt. I needed Mason to get better, I needed him in my life. I needed my father.

“Dad” I whispered, “it’s me Qui- ... Aria. Your daughter. I need you to get better, ok? I have no one. You’re the only family I’ve got left. You can’t leave me, not when I’ve only just found you”

I sniffed and blinked back the tears that threatened to stream down my face. A shiver ran over my skin and my head shot up at a familiar scent.


I turned around just as the door opened and Jayce stepped out in front of me.

“Should have known there would be no sneaking up on you now with that new shifter nose of yours” he joked, a soft smile playing on his ruggedly handsome features.

I could feel Rogue humming inside me...not humming, purring. Rogue was purring. I returned Jayce’s smile then turned back to Mason.

“Were you eavesdropping?”

Jayce approached me slowly and crouched down next to me.

“You have me you know. You don’t have no one. You have me”

I tore my eyes away from my father and watched Jayce’s hand as it rested gently on my knee. I let my gaze wander up his muscular arm and his broad shoulders, eventually resting on his gorgeous face.

“Do I?” I asked, in almost a whisper.

My stomach flipped as my eyes locked with his, electricity crackling between us. Jayce lifted his hand to cup my face, I leant into his warm touch and sighed. There was no denying the pull that he had on me.

“You will always have me. If you think a little panther and bear are going to be enough to drive me away...then you’re wrong”

I had been dreaming of hearing those words all week but had been terrified that I would hear the opposite. My heart thundered in my chest. I was just about to respond when I felt movement in the cage next to me.

I pulled my face from Jayce’s hand and grabbed the bars of the cage. Mason’s wolf began to twitch and shake as if he were having a seizure and the monitor began beeping rapidly.

“Moira!” I screamed desperately.

Moira came running in as I tried to rip the cage open. I felt Jayce’s hands on my shoulders, trying to pull me back.

“Quinn. You need to calm down. You need to breathe or you will end up shifting” he soothed gently.

Moira looked at the monitors and watched Mason’s movements but made no attempt to help him. This just worked me up even more.

“Help him!” I cried and tore myself from Jayce’s grip.

Moira turned to face me. There was no concern on her face. Why wasn’t she concerned? Why wasn’t she helping my father?

“He is ok Quinn” she said pointing down at Mason, “look”

I looked to the cage, my breath catching in my throat. I watched as Mason’s body convulsed and bent...and broke.

“He is shifting!”

Suddenly the wolf in front of me was no longer a wolf. His grey fur disappeared and his olive skin became visible. I gasped at the human form before my eyes, bandages hanging loosely around his body. He had long dark brown hair with a slight hint of red, just like mine. His face was half covered in an unruly beard that stretched down to his chest. He looked like his wolf had, wild.

“Dad?” I whispered, kneeling down at the cage. I put my hand back through the bars and slowly stroked his arm. Once again he didn’t react to my touch and I looked back at Moira.

“I can’t believe it. Did you ever think that after being a wolf for so long he would be able to shift back to his human state?” I asked.

Moira smiled and shrugged.

“It was Jayce’s idea. He thought that if Mason was in your presence; hearing your voice, feeling your touch, that his humanity would fight to take over”

Jayce smiled at me.

“I saw the way he looked at you in that clearing. I didn’t know it then but it is obvious now he knew exactly who you were. I figured if he was still in there then you would be the only person who could bring him out”

“Thank you” I said softly, turning back to my father and carefully stroking his hand.

He was still unconscious but I knew we were heading in the right direction. Now that his fur was gone it was clear to see his wounds had healed, maybe he had just stayed in his wolf form long enough to repair the damage Jayce had caused.

I winced as I remembered parts of the fight between the two wolves. Jayce’s jaws locked around Mason’s neck, Mason’s claws ripping through Jayce’s face. It had been brutal and savage but I understood it. The rage that I felt towards Jayce had been strong but something had held me back from attacking him when I was in my wolf form. When I’d shifted into my panther and bear it would have been a lot easier to give into the rage, if it wasn’t for Cameron and Moira then I don’t know what I might have done.

I had so many questions about myself and my...uniqueness. I knew if my father recovered that he’d be able to answer some of them. I wondered if my parent’s relationship struggled because of Claudia’s condition or wether it didn’t impact them because they had kept it cloaked and secret from everyone else.

I looked at Jayce. My true mate, my Alpha. I wondered if he would stand by my side if the rest of the pack didn’t. I wondered if he would even want to go through with the mating ritual on the off chance his pack would turn on us.

One thing was for sure, my heart would not be able to handle losing Jayce or my father. If I had to, I would fight for both of them.

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