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Chapter 43


I was instructed to stand by and wait for the Alpha’s next orders, which was exactly what I did.

Catalina had managed to calm Marcus down and was now with him up in her room, busy packing her bags so that she could leave with us as soon as Feral Grove arrived with our entourage.

Even though I haven’t known Maxwell for very long, my heart went out to him. I still didn’t know why he had marked me, but it was undeniable that his emotions were flowing through me because of his bite.

If I hadn’t found Conner, I guess I would have gladly accepted Max, but I did find Conner and my wolf, as well as I loved him dearly. I would never betray him like that. He was my fated mate, the one made especially for me and I’d be dammed if I ever let him slip through my fingers.

It was torture not to be able to mind-link or feel him anymore. I needed to know that he was ok. I needed to know what he was feeling and that he would wait for me before even attempting to change over.

My heart was weeping for both men that had tried to woo me over and although I tried to fight against the new link forming with Maxwell, I found it to be much more difficult than I had thought.

For some reason, I kept replaying our brief encounter together over and over in my mind, every time imagining a different outcome. He had caught me completely off guard and the look in his eyes immediately after had told me that he was just as shocked as I was.

Another thing that kept bugging me was the way he let Marcus attack him like that. He didn’t even try to put up a fight, almost like he wanted to be punished. Could it have been shame? Did he feel so terribly guilty that he wanted to be punished?

Whatever it was, I didn’t think he deserved such harsh punishment before anyone even heard him out.

I needed to know what he was thinking, why he did what he did. Finally, with determination, I stepped out of my room and headed down the hall to look for the infirmary.

It didn’t take me too long to find it, since there were a few signs along the walls indicating which way to go, but as soon as I stepped inside, my breathing pattern changed into shallow, exhilarating breaths and my heart rate increased significantly.

I peered into a few rooms before his scent drew me to him. He was lying in bed, motionlessly connected to a few monitors and an IV line probably containing opioids.

My mouth suddenly felt very dry as I inched towards him and quickly checked all his vitals, along with the dosage of OxyContin he was receiving intravenously.

He appeared bruised and almost broken on the outside, but his heartbeat was strong and steady. He was a fighter.

For a few moments, I just stood there, staring at him. My wolf was utterly confused and didn’t know what to do, so instead, she cowered back and let me take complete control.

As I stood there, staring at Max, I noticed for the first time what strong jawline he had. He was also a bit bulkier than Conner, with a more open, friendly face, although right now it was hard to recognize him underneath all the cuts and swelling.

At that exact moment, I felt a strange tickly sensation on my cheek and lifted my hand to inspect it.

A tear.

I was crying and I didn’t even notice it through the storm of emotions riling uncontrollably within me.

The new mate bond was beginning to form, and my soul cried out to Maxwell’s. I could not stand to be there any longer. I needed to put as much distance between us as I possibly could and fight my way back to my true mate before I got consumed by the new, yet familiar force pulling me away from Conner.

Before I turned to leave, however, I could not stop myself from bending down and placing a loving, tender kiss on Maxwell’s bruised and slightly cut lips.

Because of his mark, I wanted him, but he was not mine to have.

I closed my eyes, pulled away and took a shaky breath while focusing back on Conner. I needed Conner, with every fibre of my being and desired after him like the heavens depended on it. He was mine to have and I would give myself to him willingly every day all over again.

With one last glance in Maxwell’s direction, I forced myself to walk away and once I exited the tiny room, I started running. I ran through the halls of Malice Creek’s packhouse until I saw the exit up ahead.

I kept my eyes glued onto the darkness outside and the beautiful luminescent full moon that hanged gloomily in the sky, beckoning me to chase after it.

My heart was aching, and my wolf was howling in agony as I leapt off the front porch and shifted into my magnificent beast. Together we bolted into the nearby forest to look for cover, but instead, we found ourselves utterly alone, in a strange forest, surrounded by glowing, bright red eyes.


It was an ambush, and I ran right through the middle of their secret lair.

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