Beauty And Her Beast8
It took a few more seconds of making sure that the threat was gone for me to be able to relax.
Dropping the stick that in hindsight wasn't going to be much help to begin with, I turned to face Angus.
I ran my hand down his neck to try to calm both of us down.
I needed a moment. Just one moment of not freaking out to some degree, but I haven't been able to accomplish that ever since Luka showed up and I think almost getting mauled by a wild cat is what pushed me to my limit.
That and the fact that the only comfort that my body decided it needed was that warmth I got from Luka.
I just needed a second to compose myself before I even turned to face him.
The soft crunch on footsteps on leaves sounded behind me, seeming like they were coming from two legs instead of four.
That just barely noticeable heat ignited within me, letting me know that he was looking at me.
Which somehow made me crave Luka's actual touch even more.
My hands clenched into fists against my horse.
There was so much going on and it didn't even feel like my emotions were my own anymore.
Well, I knew they were my own, but I just wasn't usually like this.
They felt right to a certain degree, but it was such a strange and quick change that I hadn't caught up with myself yet.
And the fact that I didn't fully know what was causing this only added to my frustrations.
"Lydia," Just my name leaving his mouth caused a shiver to run up my spine.
I slowly turned my head to see him standing a few feet away, seeing that he's already put on the trousers I had given him prior.
Except now one of the pant legs had three long tears in them from the claws of the cat.
He worriedly looked me over, eyes pausing on the small amount of blood on my arm before he wiped the feline blood off his lips.
That feeling inside me grew stronger as he met my gaze, as well will the subtle relief that he was finally in front of me again.
Which still didn't excuse the frustration I felt from him running in the first place.
It looked like he was taking a few seconds to decide what to say.
"Are you... Okay?" I guess he settled with.
Which in turn caused all of my pent up stress and confusion to finally burst.
"Am I okay?" I turned to face him completely, "The wolf I caught turned into a man who not only makes it so I cant have rational thoughts but also tells me I too can turn into a wolf. I can't even disagree with him because in its own messed up way it makes sense, I've barely slept in the past 37 hours because I've been trying to make sense of it all, the wolf I've been trusted to keep track of ran off, I was just three seconds away from being mauled by a cougar, and now the only thing my brain can come up with to calm me down is to get close to you!" My anger slowly melted into distress as my sentence continued.
I hadn't realized my arms had crossed until I felt my grip tighten onto my own biceps.
This too added onto my new behavior.
I'd never voiced my problems with someone that I just met.
Luka just stood there for a moment, his brows pinched together showing he was trying to process something.
It looked like some of this was partially new to him too.
Wordlessly he took a few slow steps towards me, being just as cautious as he was when he was behind bars.
Just like before, he extended a hand towards me, his palm facing up.
I swallowed in hesitation, setting my fingers over his before they folded in on each other.
Immediately that feeling I craved spread from where we touched into my whole body, flooding my senses with relief.
I physically felt the tension I was holding melt and take a good portion of my stress with it.
For a moment everything felt okay-ish.
My next words came freely.
"I feel like I don't know what's going on because there's so much going on," I began, keeping my eyes on where our hands were connected, "And I don't know what to do or who to go to because I don't even know what's happening."
He took another slow step closer.
"I'm here. You have me," his soothing tone added to the already existing effects.
It was then that I realized our bodies had never been this close to each other, nor had I realized how tall he was.
Despite me being on the higher side of five feet, he still looked like he had five or six inches on me.
"I just met you," I retorted, the rational part of my brain popping out for a moment.
He let out a soft laugh.
"We've been connected ever since you entered into this world. I know you don't fully understand what being mated is yet or how it works, but I promise you that I'll help you understand."
"Then tell me," I pleaded, "Tell me what this whole mate thing means so I can figure out how to deal with all of this."
A small smile rose on his lips as his thumb rubbed my knuckles.
At this point, the warming sensation was enhancing my exhaustion and I had to fight the urge to just fall against him completely.
"I will, just not here. This territory is run by that cougar and we need to get out of here before we upset her again."
"Then come back with me." The words escaped me without a second thought.
That was what I wanted from the beginning.
Him to come back until my father returns.
Probably not in the cage but we'd figure something out.
That way I wouldn't have failed him by losing his greatest discovery when I specifically told him I'd make sure nothing happened.
"I would, but I'm afraid I'm needed elsewhere," he spoke sincerely.
For some reason, my heart ached at that.
I looked over the shadows that were being cast on him from the leaves above, the fact that we may have to go our separate ways admittedly saddening me.
Until I felt a slight tug at where our fingers were connected.
"Come with me instead."
My eyes bulged immediately, "What?!"
That amused glint returned to his eyes.
"That was what my goal was this whole time. I guess I spaced the whole fact that horses don't take well to stalking predators," He said, nodding towards Angus.
Luka... I cant."
"Why not?" He asked, "Lydia, there's a whole other half of yourself that you have yet to discover. And in order to help you find it, I need to take you to my pack."
Wait, hold on, I can't just up and run away with him.
Despite the fact that quite possibly every other part of my body was urging me to go.
"But my father-"
"Will be gone for a month. Maybe more. Give me a month and then we'll return." he offered.
"Yes. We. I can't be away from the pack for too long, but if you're worried about upsetting your father, I'll return as well."
That sincerity again, telling something within me that he was being honest.
I thought for a moment, my teeth biting the corner of my lip.
That could work.
But so many things could also go wrong.
How do I know my father won't return with his whole crew to subject Luka to more tests?
Of course, none of them were harmful, but the thought just felt... off.
Plus this whole werewolf... lycan thing seemed to be a well-kept secret and part of me wanted to keep it that way.
"Wait, is my father having a sample of your blood as well as other things going to be an issue for your kind?"
He shook his head with another short chuckle.
"Our, and no. If all it took was a bit of our DNA to out our whole species, we'd have been found a long time ago."
Huh. Ok fair enough.
But still, there were so many loose ends that could come up.
"And if my father returns early to find both his daughter and a wolf missing?"
Luka waved his other hand off like it was no big deal.
"I already wrote him a letter explaining that the wolf ran off and you followed through to go find it. Along with a 'don't worry' and an 'I'll be back soon'," He paused for a second, his smile widening, "Your handwriting is adorable by the way. Specifically the stars you use to dot your 'i's and 'j's."
My lips parted at his last statement, reading between the lines at what he meant.
"You forged my handwriting?!" I asked, drawing my hand back.
The sensation faded, but for a second it was worth it to prove my point.
He did nothing but proudly quirked a brow.
"It's an old skill I picked up to annoy my siblings many years ago that just happened to come in handy," he explained casually.
I accepted that explanation with a long sigh, figuring if anything else were to go wrong, I could deal with it then and there.
Plus I could always just leave and head back on my own.
"Okay. One month. And you promise me you can explain everything that's been happening to me over the years?"
He tried to mask the excitement that overcame him at my cooperation.
"I promise." He concerned, glancing past to over to Angus.
My eyes followed him as he walked past me and in front of my horse.
"Did you hurt anything when you fell, or are you okay to ride again?" He asked, gesturing to my arms.
I didn't answer for a moment, just watched as Luka gently ran his hand over Angus' face.
His ears pointed forward as Luka met his eye, his head steadily lowering soon after.
Angus had never submitted to someone who wasn't me that fast...
"No... I'm fine... God don't tell me you can like talk to animals too or something."
"Not talk. It's more like an understanding and swapping of intentions. Now he knows that I'd like him to follow me and that I won't hurt either of you, and I know that he'd like to get the hell out of here as fast as we can."
I bit back a smile.
Yeah, that sounded like Angus.
I stepped up towards him, intent on getting up on him again.
"So, just follow the wolf?" I asked, accepting the boost up Luka offered me.
"Follow the wolf."BBeauty And Her Beast9