I kissed him.
My inexperience in kissing was definitely exposed with my childish attempt, as Edward instinctually moved his right hand on the back of my neck, grasping it. This way, I couldn’t easily break free from the kiss anymore. His soft lips were sliding, and mine quickly adapted and followed his. Even though the movements were not yet familiar to me, I could feel his breath seeking union and closeness. The heat rose in my cheeks and trying to move away, our feet intertwined and we fell on the couch behind us, interrupting our moment. We stood there for a moment, lying on the couch, taking in each other. We both felt the need to continue but his blushed yet saddened expression let me know that he realised Accalia was still mad. So we silently agreed to compose ourselves.
“I’m sorry. I’ll talk to her.” I tell him, feeling a bit guilty.
“It’s fine. I hurt her. I can only win her back by proving myself to her in time. Besides, it’s good that we stopped. Continuing… would have been dangerous, I don’t know how long I can control myself, or Arthur.”
I nod, looking at the ground. He gets up and makes his way towards his desk: “Oh, by the way, I meant to talk to you today about the marking ceremony.”
This piques my interest, making me look up at him.
“It’s been decided that the ceremony will take place in 4 days, on the first full moon of the month.”
“That makes sense. What’s the itinerary for the ceremony? Do I have to do anything?”
Edward smiles proudly and says: “Dear, this is your ceremony. Michael and Amanda will handle everything, starting from preparing the location to handing out invitations and catering. All you have to do is relax and enjoy yourself. From what I’ve heard, it’s going to be held in the traditional spot, in the eastern forest. There is a huge, charming meadow in there, where important meetings are usually held. You know… since we need the clearing for… uhm… eventual fighting.”
“Eventual fighting?” I look at him confused.
“Yes. I’ll give it to you straight: I expect Rachel to challenge your position. I have tried talking her out of this, but she just won’t or, more like, she cannot understand how everything happened so fast.” he pauses and looks around, aimlessly. Eventually, he continues: “You see, she was brought up by her father with the conviction that her purpose in life is to bear the King’s children, due to genetics. Then 6 days before her birthday, or before her so-called destiny had a chance, you appeared. It’s no wonder she hates you.” and he shrugs. “I’m not trying to make up excuses for her behav-” but I interrupt him:
“That’s alright. It must be rough for her, being brought up with a certain path in life and having it change drastically like this. We will face her if needed, we are not afraid to fight for us.”
Somehow, a feeling of pity took over my body when I heard Rachel’s story. Of course, this is still not a good enough reason for her behavior, but I can understand where she’s coming from. She must be going through a lot of pain these days… This feeling in my chest that I must find Rachel a reason to live for other than breeding, that I should talk to her, won’t leave me alone. But no, I must stop this chain of thoughts. She is a mature she-wolf who can make her own choice. If that choice is to challenge me and risk banishment, or worse, death, then so be it. I shall honor it.
“I’ll go to sleep now, for real.” I say, jokingly.
Edward nods and wishes me goodnight using his melodious, yet authoritative voice.
Having made my mind up, I begin to leave for my room. We must have talked for a while because the house became dark and quiet by the time I exited the office. I walk slowly on the stairs so as to not make a lot of noise, but the stairs are as sturdy as they look old. When I get to my room, I take a shower and think about the day, making mental notes for my following actions. Finally, I quietly go to sleep.
When I first heard that Edward’s mate was an Omega, I have to admit that I felt inclined to support Rachel. Our pack has heaps of enemies, we cannot afford to lose face or weaken the Alpha King blood. She showed up on our doorstep with a thin, small figure and nothing special about her whatsoever. Then Edward asked me to show her around when the last thing I wanted was to spend time with her. I had hoped Rachel would expose this girl’s true, feeble mask when I smelled Rachel’s group get closer to the canteen, so I watched the show unravel from behind the scenes as much as possible. However, when Edward came I had to pretend to at least try and help her. I have to admit though, it took everyone by surprise when she commanded to submission a room full of wolves. Even my wolf and I felt the need to kneel and bare our neck, hence gaining a tad of my respect. Then slowly, some qualities of a Luna made their appearance, one by one. She is genuinely interested in our village, she knows how to handle and play with children, she can tell when there is a need to show off strength or not and all of these are seemingly instinctual to her.
The day after I showed Emily our dungeon, I wake up to find her waiting at my door. She asked me nicely to take her to the training grounds. Even though me and Michael were supposed to deal with a few errands for the marking ceremony, my dear mate volunteered to do them by himself so as to give me and Emily some bonding time. Once we arrived to the training grounds, she absorbed the place for a few moments, watching others wrestle and exercise with excitement in her eyes. After a talk with the instructor, Emily quickly joined the teams. I noticed that some groups were snickering and gossiping on the sidelines, and I’m sure she noticed them, too, as her eyes saddened. Surprisingly, I found myself feeling angry at those bunches. However, Emily did not seem to flinch at their attitude. They tried to bring her down, but she outsmarted each and every one of them, regardless of what they threw at her. She also took advantage of the opportunity to give them tips and tricks, fixing their stature or techniques. Then we decided to relax by visiting the kindergarten and greeting the children.
At the end of the day, I believe that everyone who interacted with her, be it Omega, pack warrior or child, definitely warmed up to Emily, as did I.