West couldn’t believe it, didn’t want to take his eyes off of her not for a single second, she might bloody vanish from his sight, or he might wake up from a dream. It had hurt when she’d stated she had not chosen him. He’d not really expected her to, wanted her to with all that was in him, but their past, so very bad and he was the cause of it.
But then, to hear her state, she chose Clova and Clova wanted Volt. It meant that she was going to be staying, but he no longer had Volt. Would she leave him because of this? Was amazed by how the two of them had forced his wolf back to the surface, from the dark depths of his mind, barely reachable to himself.
Chastised his wolf for leaving them, nearly made him laugh. When they threatened to beat him senseless for leaving, it had not been their fault. He had made the choice for them to go with Jayden.
Volt had not liked it, but he too, on some deeper level, knew this pack had caused her so much harm. And neither he nor West had been able to protect her, and felt partially responsible for failing her too.
They walked behind her as she stalked out of his office, followed her all the way to the pack-house dining room, didn’t like that they were not allowed to Mark her, but Belinda’s words had been full of urgency and panic, she knew who and what Jo-anne really was.
Had said, she had tainted blood, and that it was inside of him and Volt still, that had brought to their mind Heath who had suddenly turned on Jo-anne after his wolf had bitten her, gone completely insane it seemed. But now after he’d vomited blood, her blood at that, he seemed fine and back to normal.
Belinda had told them she was willing to bet Jo-anne could heal the man. How she had done it, he did not know, but that man had thrown up only her blood. If her blood was tainted and that was the reason for his behaviour, then maybe there was a reason behind his own behaviour towards her all those years ago. He hoped so. He did not want to go back to hurting her.
Though a small part of him knew she would not take it anymore, her Alpha Wolf would hit back, and he was actually really glad to know that, that she would not put up with any s**t from him, if he reverted back to how he had been when they’d previously been mated, he still worried he would want to hurt her the way he had back then, needed to talk to Belinda about it, but the woman was distressed at just the thought of the girls father. It would take more time.
Watched as Jo-anne loaded up a plate full of food, she was starving hungry by the look of it. He to, got lunch and sat down next to her. Volt, it seemed, was very happy to have Clova as his Mate again, was sitting watching Jo-anne the whole time, kept making West look at he, seems his wolf didn’t want to not look at her.
Jo-anne turned and looked right at him, glared at him actually. They knew she was still mad at West, but his wolf’s happiness was bleeding through into him as well. He smiled at her couldn’t help it. Knew she had every right to be mad at him too, but if he was truly honest with himself, he didn’t really care, was just glad she had picked him.
Well, her wolf had chosen his.
All he cared about was that Jo-anne was here to stay. Her wolf had wanted his and Jo-anne had allowed it, they had even brought his wolf back to him. They were amazing in everything they did.
From her art, so very talented, he was proud of her skills and couldn’t wait to get that studio finished for her, to see her in there painting, lost in it.
To her soul, so kind and caring, always thinking of others before herself, desperate to save T.J., allowed Clova what she wanted over her own preference. She was so very forgiving and loving. Only found out about her mother today and already told her she didn’t expect her to claim her, that it was up to her if she wanted to tell her family, that she would not tell them either. That she did not blame her for abandoning her.
She understood that she had her own reasons.
His Jo-anne was all heart, how she could be like this he had no idea. She was beautiful inside and out.
“Why are you staring at me?” Jo-anne asked him, around a mouthful of food, seemed annoyed that they couldn’t stop looking at her.
“Volt and I want to,” he replied simply, then smiled at her “You’re all messy, do you know that.” watched as she rolled her eyes, uncaring, and he chuckled softly. ” |ike it when you’re all messy.” He told her and he did, this was her, no make up, no pretty clothes, just Jo-anne all natural and she was the most beautiful creature he’d ever laid eyes on.
She raised an eyebrow at him, questioningly “You trying to sweet talk me into forgiving you?”
“Maybe,” he smiled. “I don’t know myself to be honest, just.” he shrugged, and reached out and took her hand in his “We want to be wherever you are right now.” It was the truth.
“You’re nuts.” she told him, but she did not make him let go of her hand, let him hold it right there in front of everyone in the dining room. He liked that. Didn’t even care if it was Clova making her do it. Their fingers were laced together and resting on the table between them for everyone to see, while they ate.
“Would you come with me to see mother in person after lunch, she will be very excited by this news,” he chuckled again “Can’t wait to get you back into Luna training, actually.” he recalled her telling him as much a few weeks ago.
“How is your mother doing?”
“Good,” West nodded, “She can come back to the pack-house tomorrow, I believe, Patterson just wants to make sure she is alright before releasing her. Father is all over the place.” he shook his head, “running about getting her every little thing she wants.”
“And you wouldn’t do that?” she enquired of him.
West smiled now, she was thinking about him and her having a child, it seemed, but he answered her honestly “l have no idea, to be honest. Never thought I’d have a pup of my own. Figured Terence’s child would take over some day.. though now.” his mind wandered just a little as his eyes slid over her, then shook his head, sighed a little, he had a confession to make. He might as well bite the bullet, so to speak. She was already mad at him, might as well get all the mad out.
Leaned right over to her, pressed his l!ps softly against her ear “I did Knot you. You could be with, my pup right now for all we know.” he couldn’t keep the huskiness out of his voice.
“What?” she turned and looked right at him. “No West” she shook her head” l saw Patterson remember.” saw her suddenly bite her l!p.
Wanted to k!ss her but knew better, used his thumb to pull that l!p out, took a deep breath and nodded “You did, but… I had already mind-linked the man to not give you what you wanted…before you get really mad, it was the only way to contain Volt from Marking you that day. Terence even had to hold us with his Aura to help stop Volt.”
Watched as Jo-anne absorb the news and frowned at him for a full minute, “You are crazy, do you know that. What if I was,” she hissed at him, ” and I went with Jayden?”
“But you didn’t.”
“l could have, you did shove me at him, remember.”
“I am crazy.” West acknowledged “Are you really so mad about it though?” He didn’t think so, not about stopping her from taking the morning after pill, but yes, still about the walking away from her.
Watched her sit and stare at him with narrowed eyes, seemed to be actually thinking about it, then shook her head. “No, not mad. Annoyed with you and your bloody possessiveness, your need to control me and contain me, yes.”
“I will try to be less of that for you.” and he would try but.. whether he could or not was another matter, but he would try to do this for her.
“We’ll see.” she shook her head as if she too did not believe him.
They finished their lunch and when he stood up he refused to let go of her hand, made her shake her head as she looked down at their hands, leaned right over to her, tilted her chin up and growled for all to hear “Mine, and I’m never letting go now.”
He saw Jo-anne’s eyes widen up at him. He’d not claimed her ever. This would be the first time she’d ever heard that word from him, touched his mouth to hers in a soft gentle k!ss for all his pack members to see. “Come on, let’s go and tell mother and father.” he smiled and walked them out of the dining room still holding her hand.
As they stepped out of the pack-house front door heading for the pack hospital, they both saw his whole unit, T.J. clearly in charge and oliver and his unit preparing to escort Jayden and his Beta from the pack. His Beta didn’t look so healthy, Jayden just looked pissed off as his eyes landed on Jo-anne. If the man was spoiling for a fight over her, he’d get one.
“Alpha, Luna.” T.J. acknowledged the both of them, smiled right at him, seemed happy that Jo-anne had put him in his place and wasn’t going anywhere, his sister, here where he wanted her. “Apparently he.” his jabbed a thumb towards Jayden “still has a man in the hospital.”
“I’ll allow him to stay and recover, then send him back the minute he is well enough to be released.” his eyes met Jayden’s “You attacked Jo-anne, one too many times Jayden.” He shook his head. The man had no self control it seemed.
“You didn’t want her, she is mine to claim.” He shot back.
“I did want her, always have. l just thought she was dealing with too much and wanted to lessen her burdens, her choices to make, so to speak.
Unlike you. Tried to Mark her even after she rejected you did you not.” he spat out at the man, turned and walked on tugging Jo-anne with him. He got the distinct impression that Jayden would try again if she was in his presence for an extended period of time.
Called over his shoulder, “Oh Terence, you did remind Jayden, of our Luna’s order to sever the alliance, didn’t you?”
Heard his Beta, his best friend, his Luna’s brother, Ilaugh “Oh yes, with great pleasure.” Seems T.J. liked the man even less than West himself.
Made him wonder if Belinda had shared what she’d seen, or if it was just that Jayden had simply tried to claim her against her will, pissing the man, her brother, off.
“Thank you.” he smiled to himself.
Sounded like T.J. was really enjoying ejecting Alpha Jayden from the pack.
West was curious as to what Belinda had seen in the man, and now what Jo-anne had seen in him too. She had told Belinda, all of them he was hideous, obviously had seen something she didn’t like, would like to know what they were, but… not his business. They were no longer aligned pack wise, but they were not actually enemies unless J0-anne wanted that, did she? He wondered, looked down at her. She’d not said anything to Jayden, had not really looked at him at all.
“Do you want Jayden’s pack to just be severed or are they an enemy to us?”
“Severed is fine, he’ll likely not live long anyway, not when his first Mate comes for him.” she sighed softly, “and I thought our past was terrible, at least you didn’t do that to me.” she murmured. But did not elaborate.
West pulled her gently into him, slid his arm around her, and hugged her to his side, “If it’s what you want, I will do it.”
“No, West. It’s likely his previous Mate or Mates, one of them will take over. If it’s his first one, she’ll make a fierce ally. Let’s just wait and see what happens. His pack is not bad, just him l guess.
“Mate’s?” he was shocked. The man had never showed up here with a Mate.
“Mmm, has had two of them, rejected the both of them,” he heard sadness touch her, something else he’d done made her sad. She suddenly stopped walking, and he watched her eyes glaze over and go white. That was going to get some taking used to.
Almost a full minute before she returned, “Everything alright?”
Jo-anne actually smiled up at him Yes, actually we’ll be… I’ll be accepting two new pack members.
You will grant it.” she practically demanded of him.
“Whatever you want, Jo-anne, you can accept them. You are an Alpha, and the Luna you can accept anyone you like.” he smiled down at her. She had likely yet to realise she actually held more power than him. Leaned down and k!ssed the top of her head “My Princess can have anything she wants “
Saw her shudder “Don’t call me that. I’m no princess.”
“Don’t West, I don’t like it.” she cut him off.
“Alright.” he nodded, he’d much prefer to call her by her name anyway, or her title as his Luna, liked how it rolled off his tongue, how he could purr it right out all seductive and sensual. Continued to the hospital, walked her right into the Luna suite, still holding her hand.
He saw both his mother and father look at the two of them, his mother’s eyes moved from their hands to each of them. He saw hope in her eyes, he would not keep her waiting. “Mother, father, I present to you. The Luna, Jo-anne Carlton.” Smiled the whole time he said it.
His mother was out of her bed in a flash, ran right across the room and hugged the girl tightly to her as she looked up at him. “I knew you could do it Son.”
I watched as his mother stepped back and smiled at Jo-anne, she looked so very happy to have her as his Luna, hugged Jo-anne again before releasing her. “What happened to you?” she asked, pushing her hands through Jo-annes, messy hair, trying to neaten it he thought.
“Or has my son?…”
“Mother No.” he shook his head, not that he didn’t want to, but he was certain she was not ready for that, not after stating she’d not chosen him.
Jo-anne smiled at her a little. “Hard to explain I guess, but I had a bit of a run in with Jayden and his Beta.”
“It’s all good mother.” West chuckled as he watched his mother turn Jo-anne around, searching for wounds, like she had done him after he’d gone missing, but wasn’t missing. Hmm, still hadn’t figured that one out. Likely it was Jo-anne and some sort of ability, she’d used unwittingly.
Jo-anne is.. Special, she can handle herselfit seems.”
Turned his eyes to his father, who had now gotten up and was walking across the room, “Son, was I informed correctly? Our Jo-anne here, kicked in your office door.”
West smiled “Yes you did,” though whether it was pure wolf strength or a bit of her that glowed he didn’t know, likely both “clean off its hinges, will nave to get that fixed.” he nodded.
“A good strong Luna you have, the pack will benefit greatly.”
“I’m not fussed about that, father. I just my Luna to be happy is all.” he was looking at her and she turned and looked up at him.
“We’ll likely get there, but for now, I’m still very annoyed at you.”
“That is fine. You can be annoyed, or angry, as long as you like. As long as you are ours, Mine and Volts, we do not care.”
“Why are you annoyed sweetheart?” it was his mother. “You’ve chosen your Mate, you should be happy.”
“Clova is very happy.. West and I,” she shook her head “I will not deny Clova her Mate.”
Saw his mother frowning. “So your choice, the answer was Clova?”
Obviously, his mother also knew what was going on. Jo-anne must have confided in her as well as Ella. At least she’d had someone she could talk to, trusted her Luna, and his mother had told him nothing at all, kept Jo-anne’s confidence.
“lt was, and I nearly lost her all over again when West left us and tried to make me go with Jayden.” she muttered, still sounded very annoyed by that.
“He did what?” his mother’s head snapped to him. Her eyes were full of anger. Oh, he was in for a verbal berating at some point. “Are you so stupid, son?”
West sighed, “Mother, it has been a long hard day for everyone, lots of things have happened, that you are likely unaware of yet. Let it go please, you may yell at me later. Aren’t you supposed to be staying calm?” he reminded her.
“Oh, we’re going to sit down and talk about your behaviour and you will listen to me or I’Il be the one beating you.” she was pointing a manicured finger at him, like she always did, when berating him.
West just nodded at her, he would have to sit and listen, though he was pretty sure he would just Zone out like he did every other time and think about something else. Something that smelled perfect to him, was standing right next to him, in fact. Was brought back to the room, when she hit him “You’re not listening to me already.”
“Sorry, my mind was else where.” he admitted, his eyes moved to Jo-anne, it was likely his mind would be else where a lot for a long while. T.J. was going to have to step into those Alpha shoes of his, while West sorted out his relationship and he was going to, he was not going to let her get away from him, he would find away to get them to a happy place, so not just their wolves could be happy, but so could they.
“l just thought I’d come and share the good news with you in person. We’ll let you get your rest, mother.”
“The Luna’s Ceremony West?”
“On the next full moon, as would be expected,” he nodded.
“Good. I will not let you screw that up, son.”
“I will give Jo-anne, whatever she wants in regards to that,” and he would, shower her with everything her heart desired, regardless of the cost.
“Yes you will. I will sit and discuss it. Plan it myself and you will deny me or her nothing.” She was staring up at him all Luna. She had wanted to plan this for a long time. He could well imagine it was already planned inside that mind of hers.
“Agreed, spoil her rotten together we will, mother.”
Saw his mother’s smile of approval, then she stepped over and hugged him. “That’s a good Alpha, wanting everything for his Luna, I knew you were still in there somewhere, West. It’s good to see you, have you back.” then she let him go and waved them out of the room.
They walked most of the way in silence. “West?”
“I don’t need anything fancy” she sounded concerned to him. “please don’t waste the packs money on me.”
“Your ceremony will be big and lavish, like it is supposed to be. Somehow I don’t think you are going to be able to convince mother otherwise.” It’s not something you should do. Spend all that money on me.”
“Jo-anne, a Luna’s ceremony is not a waste of money. Besides, if everything goes well and I’m hoping it will, it will be more than just your Luna ceremony too.”
Her grey eyes turned on him. “What are you talking about?”
“We can discuss that in private. There is something else I want for this pack and I think it’s time I sorted that out.” he smiled down at her, “but I want that just between you and I for now, so we can discuss it later when we’re alone.”
“You’re being very cryptic, West. I’ve had enough of that to be honest. The moon Goddess just about did my head in.” she was frowning up at him.
“I will explain everything to you, I promise you I just not out in public.” he reassured her.
Smiled at his unit, who were all sitting in his office when they walked in, he did note the door was up off the floor and leaning against the wall “Your Luna, gentlemen.” he announced Jo-anne to them formally.
“Luna.” they all smiled right at her, all of them looked happy, he noted.
“You don’t have to do that everywhere we go.” she looked up at him, frowning again.
“Why would I not? You are my Mate, my Luna and the only woman I have ever, and will ever love. I will announce you proudly everywhere I go.” He smiled and he would, every time, he would never stop telling her he loved her, not until she believed it. And then he’d probably still tell her all the time anyway.
Walked over to his desk and sat down, tugged her down onto his lap. She was a little resistant to it, but didn’t really get much choice. “Terence, I think you will need to step up to Alpha for a few days, Jo-anne and I will.” he smiled “need some time to get reacquainted.”
Saw her turn those grey eyes on him, glaring right at him, so darn cute “What?” he chuckled. “We need to sit and talk, do we not?”
Heard her mutter “That’s not what you implied.” and folded her arms across her chest.
“Terence?” he ignored her annoyance. It had been a double meaning, held her tight to his lap when she struggled to get up off him, felt Volt pushing forward, saw she noted it, saw Clova rise to the surface and settle down against his chest.
“Sure thing, West.”
“Ricky, Cole. You’re Alpha for the next few days, Terence.. Cole. Be nice to the man, no grief.” He was starting to loose his battle against Volt and his need to hold his mate who was rubbing her head on his chest. It was very cute.
“Yes, Alpha,” he heard both of them say.
Was about to relinquish full control to his wolf when he heard Ricky “Alpha?”
West looked at him, both he and Volt together. Volt, a little annoyed, his mate was on his lap and snuggling into him, tightened his arms around her, they heard her purr softly and settle into him.
“Cole and I.”
He and Volt could actually see the pair of them were sporting silver filigree, had finally Marked each other. “l can see, it’s about time the two of you came together.” He smiled at them.
They both still resided in their family suites, had never taken a suite of their own, likely trying to keep their secret still. “You two should go up stairs and pick a suite together, somewhere near Terence and I please. That would be good for all of us as a sold unit”
“We do have a request,” it was Cole.
“Ask,” he nodded.
“It’s not a nice thing, to bring up but…the next child to be orphaned due to unforeseen circumstances, we’d like to take on as our own.
It wasn’t something nice to think about, he was right on that, but it did unfortunately happen from time to time. “Alright.” he nodded.
Your mother has that covered West.’ he heard Jo-anne’s voice inside his mind as he finally relinquished full control to his wolf so he could spend time with Clova.