Logan had apparently walked to the cemetery, so I gave him a ride back with me. I should have let him walk. “I understand your concern that she’s a human, but it doesn’t change that she’s your mate, brother.” he shook his head. “No, I don’t think you do. And you should. You brought Suzu and Hana into our world. And it got Suzu killed, and Siegfried nearly killed Hana two years ago.” I pointed out.
My knuckles were turning white as I was gripping the wheel so tightly. “I will not place her in unnecessary danger.” I growled. I know Irving agrees, even if all he wants is to have her by our side. “Do not use Suzu and Hana as your fucking excuse to be a damn purest coward!” Logan roared. Even after all this time, Suzu is a sore subject for him. I know it, but he has to see where I’m coming from.
I slammed the brakes and glared at my brother. His Alpha aura was in full force, and his eyes were rimmed with Jericho’s blood-red as they otherwise flickered between Logan’s natural blue and Jericho’s red. Irving was whimpering in my head. Even though I am also of alpha blood and Logan’s elder brother, my wolf still recognizes his alpha.
I was doing my damndest to ignore Irving’s need to bare his neck to Logan and Jericho. I am his older brother, god damn it. “FUCK YOU!” I shouted. It was all me at this point. Irving wasn’t lending any of his power to my words. He didn’t want to appear to challenge his Alpha. And I accept that. I don’t want to challenge Jericho or Logan, at least not in that sense. But I’m the big brother, and I’m not going to let him say shit like that to me
“How fucking dare you call me that! Which of us was the one that had to quell father’s anger and mother’s sorrow when you showed up from the gathering in Japan not with a mate but a lover? Oh right, that was me! I’m the one that took your beating because I told father if he was angry at someone, if he had to hit someone, it would have to be me because I wouldn’t allow him to touch my brother and alpha.” I ranted, unleashing years of frustration.
“You only heard whispers of disapproval and unrest amongst our pack when our alpha brought not just a human but a human who wasn’t his mate to live with us and practically be his Luna. I’m the one that was hearing the complaints and grievances about it. I was the one putting people in their place, telling them to let it go. I’m the one that shielded you, Suzu, and Hana from their mockery. So don’t ever call me a purest!” I continued to rant.
“I never cared that Suzu was human. I worried for her and Hana. I still worry for Hana. We are Kinsleys. In the supernatural world, that means we have enemies that look for any weak spots to exploit. And outside the supernatural community, we have enemies that would like to bring us to heel. If it weren’t Siegfried, it would have been someone else who went after her.” I sighed.
Logan was staring at me with a gaping jaw. I’m the reserved brother. I don’t lose my temper. “John....” he sighed. “I know, okay. I know you’ve always stood up for me. Even before I shifted, you were defending me because I was labeled the runt. I didn’t realize dad beat on you because he wanted to beat on me over Suzu. But John… you can’t ignore your mate. You cannot ignore the bond. Trust me.” he shook his head.
“I can. It’s for her safety.” I sternly said. And what does my brother do? He laughs! The asshole is laughing at me! “John, I know you like to think you have this willpower of steel or something, but nothing stops the mate bond but rejecting them. And you won’t reject her. Our pack doesn’t allow the rejection of mates. We are firm believers that the moon goddess doesn’t get it wrong and that we must uphold her will.” he sighed.
“For her safety, I can.” I grumbled, sure I could resist the pull. “Right. Like I was successful in resisting Aurelia when she was a camper, and I knew I should.” he rolled his eyes. “You were in the same place and could smell her. I’m in a completely different town than Sarael. I won’t have to see her.” I argued. “Wait… hold on. Sarael? As in our florist? She’s your mate?” he blinked. “Um. Yes.” my lips pressed into a thin line, trying not to frown.
“You won’t be able to escape her then. Not with everything that’s going to go into planning this wedding. And now that we know Aurelia is pregnant, there will be doctor appointments, and you’ll have to meet with people in our stead.” he laughed. “Send Sybille then. It isn’t like pack business or our family company. Sybille is more than qualified to handle assisting with wedding arrangements.” I shook my head.
“Sybille has a toddler to chase after. She doesn’t need the workload.” he smirked. “It’s just the florist. I doubt even if I do assist you as you seem so keen on me doing, it will require me interacting with her much. Now knock it off before we get home. You cannot tell anyone about her.” I insisted. “What? Why not?” he frowned.
“Have you listened to anything I’ve said? I’m trying to protect her. News gets out that both Kinsleys have mates, and we paint a bigger target. I’m sure plenty are looking for a way to use the wedding to target us. And just like I’m sure you want to keep word about the pup from spreading too far for Aurelia and its safety, I don’t want word getting out and putting Sarael in danger.” I rationalized.
“I think you are overthinking this. But fine, I won’t announce that our Beta has found his mate.” he shrugged. “Good. You can’t tell Charles, Sybille, Silvercloud, Hana, or Aurelia either.” I added as I parked. “Wait. I don’t keep things from Aurelia. At least things that are surprises for her. Like I’m not telling her about getting plans ready to convert the room next to ours into a nursery. But John… you can’t expect me not to tell her that our florist is your mate.” he frowned.
“I can, and I do. She’s the one that will deal with Sarael the most. I don’t want her pregnancy hormone brain to slip and say something she shouldn’t. So promise me, brother. Promise you will tell no one about my mate?” I turned my gaze to him as I extended my hand. He sighed but took my hand. “I promise to tell no one about your mate.” he vowed as our handshake slid to a wrist grip then to a fist bump. It was probably dumb, but it was our brothers' handshake.
I nodded and followed him inside, secure in the fact my secret was safe. “Uncle John! Uncle John! Did you hear??!!” Hana shouted as she raced at Logan and me. “I’m going to be a big sister!” she announced proudly. “Yes. Your dad and I were talking about that.” I nodded, hugging her. Aurelia walked out of the kitchen, chomping into a banana. She didn’t look as thrilled as my niece or brother at the news.
“If you say ‘I told you so’ or anything along those lines, so help me, John, I will make you a eunuch and apologize to your mate when you find her by buying her a vibrator.” she glared at me, taking a large bite of the banana. I raised an eyebrow and glanced at Logan. Despite the rather aggressive way she just ate that fruit, his damn eyes were clouded with lust.
I rolled my eyes. “I would never dare ridicule you, Luna.” I smiled, offering her the wildflowers. “I thought you could use some cheering up no matter what the doctor said. I also have the quote from Sarael for you to review and sign. She also said she emailed them to you.” I reported, offering her the quote.
“Well, at least that’s good news.” she said, taking the flowers and the quote with a small smile. “Aurelia…” Logan frowned. “Are you saying our future alpha isn’t good news?” I arched an eyebrow casting a glance at her still, very flat stomach. She sighed, shoulders sinking. “No, I'm not saying that. It’s just the timing. I don’t want to have to choose my wedding dress based on accommodating a pregnant belly. I’ll be starting to show by November.” she frowned.
I sighed, cocking my head. “No, you won’t.” I assured her. Her brow furrowed as she looked up at me. “I’ll be six months pregnant by the wedding. So pretty sure I’ll be showing.” she frowned. “You’re carrying a Kinsley.” I stated like that explains it all. “And that means what?” she demanded, hands on her hips. A few petals of the flowers fluttered to the floor with the movement.
“Despite how big an alpha typically is, Kinsleys tend to be small infants.” I explained. “Seriously?” she asked, eyeing me like she didn’t believe I was ever small. “Yes. I weighed a mere five pounds two ounces at birth and was only seventeen inches tall. Logan was born full-term but looked like a premi, being even smaller than I was. But my weight and height at birth were average for Kinsleys. Never understood why.” I shrugged.
Aurelia’s brow remained furrowed, her stand softened as she put the hand holding the quote against her belly. “Well as long as the baby is born healthy.” she conceded. “And our pup will be. They will be healthy and happy.” Logan promised, kissing her. The kiss started to take a turn to be more passionate as her arms snaked around his neck, petals now getting in his hair.
“Okay, so while you two make out, I’ll put the flowers in water, you know, before you kill them.” I sighed, taking the flowers from her. Hanna snickered as she skipped along with me to the kitchen. Neither Aurelia nor Logan noticed or acknowledged what I said. “Isn’t it sweet that they are still so in love?” Hana sighed, leaning her chin in her hands. I rolled my eyes. “That’s the way of mates. As long as they don’t start having sex in the foyer, it’s fine.” I frowned, reminded of my mate who I will never be with.
“When will you find your mate, Uncle John?” she asked. I sucked in a breath because the question was innocent enough. Especially coming from my twelve-year-old niece. “Only the Goddess knows.” I sighed. She was frowning at me before suddenly hugging me as I put the vase on the counter. “You’ll meet her. I’m sure of it. And I know she will be a strong she-wolf that will be a good match for you and Irving. She’ll have to be perfect for you. She’ll be your soulmate.” she grinned up at me.
Oh, if she only knew. “I’m sure the Goddess has a plan.” I patted her head. “Now then, I have work I should be attending to. Find a good place for Aurelia’s flowers.” I smiled, leaving her to handle the flowers. Walking back out, I groaned because I briefly saw the bar back of my brother as he was tugged into his office, the door closing behind him.
Seeing Logan happy and in love hadn’t bothered me as much before Sarael. ‘But it’s different. You are actively choosing not to be happy and in love.’ Irving oh so helpfully chimed in. ‘You know, bringing her into the supernatural world would put her in danger.’ I grumbled. ‘She’s our mate. The Goddess felt she could handle it. Don’t question the Goddess, John. We should be near our mate. We should be with her.’ he huffed.
I rolled my eyes and went to my office. I needed to keep myself busy, so I would stop thinking about her. It didn’t work very well. Irving was constantly thinking about her and bringing up mental images of her to taunt me. I wanted to clear my head, so I’d left the packhouse and shifted, letting Irving run. Such a bad idea.
Every time I told him to turn back around, he ignored me. The next thing I knew, we were near the parking lot near her shop, watching her like a damn creepier. ‘Irving. This is stalker activity. We should not be stalking her.’ I argued with him as she seemed nervous looking around the parking lot. I swore she looked at me, and finally, Irving let me have some control, and we started to leave.
It didn’t last long. Irving was back in control, being a damn creeper as he followed her home. Settling into the rose bushes to watch over her. ‘She has a cat.’ Irving growled softly. He hates cats. I’m indifferent. ‘That’s not a mere cat. It knows we are here. I think she knows we’re here too.’ I commented, finding the way both looked out the window at us concerning. And then how she walked away from the room, her hips swaying, making me gulp down my desire to shift and knock at her door. To ask her to let me in. Into her house. Into her bed. Into her heart. I’m a goner.
I tried to sleep. I was tired. I mean, it was a long and eventful day after all. But knowing John was out there in his wolf, I couldn’t sleep. Was it because it unnerved me to have a werewolf watching my house, stalking me like his prey? Or was it because of this urge to open my back door and call him inside? I groaned and angrily fluffed my pillow. “Stupid mate bond.” I grumbled. “Merow!” Shu cried, annoyed, giving me the side-eye from his spot on my bed. “Sorry, Shu. I’m trying to sleep, but I… I can’t. He might still be out there. I know it’s not going to be cold, and even if it was, he’s a wolf they run hot anyway. I wonder how hot his skin would feel to touch. “No bad, Sarael.” I shook my head, wanting the thoughts to go away. I sighed and flopped onto my back, and looked up at my ceiling. I closed my eyes, trying to force myself to go to sleep, wh
‘We should go, Irving. I know she’s our mate, and you want to be near her, but this is getting ridiculous. We are sitting in her rose bushes when we should be home in our bed.’ I sighed. I’ve been repeating myself, yet my wolf doesn’t want to listen. Damn mate bond. He’s lost all sense because of it and her. ‘Don’t say mean things about our mate.’ Irving growled. I sighed, rolling my eyes from my spot in the back of my own mind. Irving was not willing to give back control so we could go home. And since he ran us here, I don’t even have a change of clothes to force him to shift. He knows well that I’m the modest sort and wouldn’t risk even at this late hour being seen walking around naked. ‘A storm is coming.’ I commented, able to smell the rain on the breeze and hear thunder in the distance. ‘We really should go home. We are not sitting out here all night, least of all in a storm.’ I said firmly.
I blame the mate bond. I also blame him. I am not the sort of woman that throws herself wantonly at any man. And I’ve seen my share of good-looking men. Human and supernatural alike. But John Kinsley… takes the cake. It took all I had to not throw myself at him when he walked out in just those basketball shorts. And this kiss! I don’t want to contemplate how he’s this good at kissing. I know if I do, that little green monster known as jealousy will rear its ugly head. I have no right to be jealous. He’s not mine. Or rather, he wasn’t mine. No, he isn’t mine. Fuck this mate bond shit is messing with my head. I had no idea it could affect a human like this. Am I getting hit double time because, unlike a werewolf, I only have one spirit inside me? That’s a thought for another time. For when I’m not in his arms, tasting him, touching him, and basicall
I’ve been off since leaving Sarael’s house. This damn mate bond was weighing on me. Irving was angry at me for what happened. Not the whole kissing her part, no that he fully supported. No, he was angry because I apologized for it and got us essentially kicked out of her house. He can be mad all he likes. I’m mad at him too. He’s the one that pushed me to kiss her. And then forcing me into the back of my own mind to speak through me. He said too much to her. Telling her, I wanted to kiss her since the moment I laid eyes on her. Even if it’s true, he shouldn’t have told her that. There is a reason we werewolves have two spirits, a human and a wolf. We balance each other and are only at our best when wolf and human are in sync with each other. So Irving and I being mad at each other have me thrown out of balance. Add that to being away from my mate, and l
I had it up to my chin with this pintsized alpha. I am in no mood for anyone’s bullshit, least of all his. Maybe if he wasn’t John’s brother, maybe if he wasn’t a shorter mountain man version of him, and maybe if he weren’t an alpha, who are notorious for getting their way, I’d feel differently. But he is an alpha, he does look like John, and he is John’s brother. For all these reasons, I wish I kept some weapons on hand here at the store. I get that he’s upset. As a younger sibling myself, I understand being protective. But it’s not his business. It’s between John and me. I didn’t get involved in my sister’s relationship troubles. Well, not to this degree. And for what meddling I did, I regret to this day. As our argument was starting to get heated and I worried Becky would hear us, the door burst open. I was ready to reprimand Becky only to see John’s
I’ve done it again. I’ve lost all my sense of reason to the pull of the mate bond. Not only did I technically assault my Alpha, but I also kissed her again. Her scent seemed to be even stronger, or maybe it’s just because I have gone a week without smelling it that it feels stronger. Fuck I was seconds away from sinking my teeth into her neck and marking her. If I weren’t so damn embarrassed to be caught in her office, her legs around me and my shirt half-open, I’d probably be feeling more grateful for Becky's interruption. ‘Like hell we’re grateful. We were going to mark our mate. We shouldn’t be grateful that the stupid girl interrupted that.’ Irving grumbled. ‘And what happens if Sarael hadn’t wanted to be marked? If we marked her and then she freaked out? If she sent us away again. We’d have forcefully marked her, which is a horrid thing to do
He’s a VIRGIN! Seriously what the hell! How is that possible? I know he says he has great self-control and has been waiting for his mate but wow. I don’t think any man would wait this long, let alone when there are plenty of women more than willing to get in his bed. What would have happened if he never crossed paths with me? Would he have remained celibate his whole life?I can’t even fathom that. I mean, I should be flattered, right. He’s waited and saved himself for… well, for me. And I am. I’m also not sure about this because I was only one other guy’s first time, and he was mine. It was hands down the worst sexual experience of my life. The guy had no clue what he was doing and tried to go in the wrong hole more than once.I shuddered at the memory. I really hope that while he’s inexperienced, John has
I rolled my eyes when he darted into her bedroom. “Stupid cat.” I muttered and started looking around. I didn’t see anything personal on display. There are no family photos or photos in general. She had some lovely paintings on the walls. Sarael displayed a few knick-knacks on a shelf with her book collection.Her books were the most interesting thing she had. She had a large assortment. I can tell she’s read a few romance novels plenty of times, given the wear on their binding. Then she had some classics, horror, mystery, and thriller novels. But most of her collection was on the supernatural and history. It seems you can take the woman out of the hunter guild, but you can’t take the hunter out of the woman.When she exited her room, I smelled her before she called out to me. I’d been trying to keep Irving in check bef