I thought for sure you came because of the work I’d done on the Shadows—the research Cyrus had me conduct, Remus said, rising to stir the oats. Testing their consistency, he scooped out two steaming bowls to serve to his guests. Ancient traveler lore, yes, I can assist you with. It’s very likely the only thing I’m good for these days. The rest is beyond my sight and knowledge.
Did you ever consider—assuming we are mates—that maybe you’re jamming it, not me? You can’t tell me you don’t have issues of your own.I have issues. But I haven’t let them blind me to the truth.
As his eyes roamed over her face with a fierce possessiveness that made her stomach clench, she said, You’re absolutely positive about this, aren’t you?We wouldn’t be having this conversation if I wasn’t.How long have you believed this?
Well that explained the odd behavior he’d displayed. He’d probably felt as shocked as she was feeling right now. Honestly, Makenna had never imagined herself mating. Ryan was right; she didn’t know how to be open with people. A part of her had shut down after her mother died. For as long as she could remember, it had always been the two of them against the world—Fiona Wray had been everything to Makenna, her rock, her safe place.Then she’d died, and Makenna had been lost.
So lost she’d sought sanctuary in her wolf form, desperate to escape the pain and grief. Her wolf, just as guttered, had turned half feral. When she was placed in the shelter by Social Services, Dawn and Madisyn brought her back from that state and forced her to grieve like a human. But even back in her human form, she’d remained half feral for a while, a state that had amplified those feelings tormenting her.
Dawn and Madisyn had offered her a shoulder to cry on, but Makenna hadn’t taken it. Hadn’t shared her grief with anyone. Instead, she’d turned inward, become her own rock. She didn’t rely on others for anything, and she liked it that way. A mate, however, would never accept that. As such, Ryan’s claim scared her.He glanced at her, as if expecting Etta to coo with sympathy. She kept her gaze on the unlit brass chandelier overhead, fingers curled so tightly around the lip of the desk that her hands prickled with pain. Don’t do it. He’s not worth it.
Speaking of, Julian said, swinging around toward her, I’d like to get back to you—holy God!Etta relished the throbbing pain in her knuckles as her fist made contact with his cheek and he stumbled back over his own feet, landing in an ungraceful heap on his bottom. He stared up at her with huge eyes, one hand still cupping the red mark on his face as she shook out her hand.
What the bloody hell was that for? he howled.Do you have any idea, she said, voice rising with each word, what your ‘death’ did to your brother? Do you have any idea what he went through—what your jackass of a grandfather put him through?