Yesterday was the most traumatic day of my life and today was the weirdest day of my life. I didn’t leave the pack house at all today. I didn’t join Denny for pack training. I stayed with Joey for most of the day. And it was not weird at all; we carried on like always. It was comfortable for both of us despite everything.
It was late evening when Denny and Jude finally walked back into the pack house. It was the first time I had seen Jude since yesterday. I watched as his eyes landed on mine and he quietly stared at me. I started to feel a bit awkward under his gaze as I was still sorting through my feelings. Afterall it was his girlfriend who set me up and he knew it.
I watched as he slowly walked towards me, as I stood there not knowing what to expect. When he reached me, he brought my head to his chest and wrapped his arms around me. He held me tight against him. I didn’t know how to react. I just stood there frozen at first. I felt his head rest on top of mine and his hands trembled slightly.
‘Jude…’ I decided it was best to mentally link with him.
‘Dam.nit Clover, I am so sorry. I can’t believe she would… it’s my fault. What happened to you is my fault. I should have known. The signs were there, and I ignored them. God Clover, can you forgive me?’
My lips parted as I took in a shuddering breath. I wasn’t going to let myself cry. But I can’t tell you how much his words affected me. Then there was more shock as I realized that I had mind linked with Jude. I felt like I couldn’t before, and now I was able to reach out to him naturally. It’s strange though. It feels different than before. As if I am communicating on another level.
‘I’m going to tell Denny about Taylor. I broke up with her and locked her in solitary confinement so she can’t escape. Please, Clover don’t leave. This is your home. I’m going to protect you better. I’m so sorry.’
I swallowed down the lump that was forming in my throat as my arms moved around his body. “Jude, it’s okay.” I whispered out to him. ‘This isn’t your fault. This would have happened eventually. Taylor was just the one to set up the situation. But it could have been anyone. This pack…’ I took in a shaky breath. ‘This pack is not my home. I can’t live in the Sulfur pack, Jude.’ The place I thought was my home—wasn’t. I was supposed to be the delta of this pack who was responsible for protecting the alpha. I couldn’t stay here. The three of them would always be worrying about me and trying to protect me.
I couldn’t live here no matter how much I wanted to try to make it work. I couldn’t be Joey’s mate. I deserved to be wanted. I deserved not to be treated like an outsider. I am an alpha’s daughter. This is why I am strong. I don’t know all the details behind the war. I am sure there are two sides to the story. I wonder if all the members of the Chaos pack were killed… or if maybe some remained? Maybe some are part of the Seekers? Perhaps I should look into finding Chaos pack members.
“Jude, what is all of this about?” Denny moved next to the two of us and looked over at me. I could see there was confusion in his eyes. Obviously, there would be because I shouldn’t be able to mind link.
I watched Jude lift his head to look at Denny. “Denny… This is all my fault—”
“JUDE!” I sighed and shook my head. “Just stop. Let it go.”
“No, Clover! Why should I let this go?! You are an officer of the Sulfur pack. This act deserves punishment!” Jude growled. “And I am going to get the other names. If you won’t give them to me… I have another source now to get them from.”
“Who?” Denny’s voice was a low snarl.
“It could have been anyone. You can’t punish the whole pack! And it could have been any of them. Just because there are a few who acted on it doesn’t change how most of them feel. It’s pointless. It doesn’t matter. I am leaving here tomorrow whether I find another pack or not.”
“Clover!” Joey’s eyes looked wounded as he met with mine. I could feel his heartbreak. I gave him a small smile and shook my head.
“It can’t work Joey. I’m sorry. It just can’t work.” I went to say something else when Jude interrupted angrily.
“Taylor! Taylor was the one who sent Clover out there all on her own. I have her locked in solitary confinement until she can be questioned.” Jude looked up at my shocked face. “We can’t punish everyone. But we can punish those who acted on their thoughts. I want you to know you are worth it Clover! What happened to you shouldn’t be overlooked. It was wrong. And we need to let other pack members see there are repercussions for these actions!”
I looked over at the darkness growing in Denny’s eyes. A low growl reverberated from his throat as he took a few steps towards the door. “Let go have a talk with her.”
“I’ll be taking over from here, Denny.” Alpha Scott said as he stepped into the room. I watched as he had a minor stare down with Denny. “I heard everything. You are too emotionally involved. You are welcome to come with me, but I will handle the interrogation.”
“Fine.” Denny scowled and then looked over at Jude. “You don’t have to come—”
“I’m coming.” Jude took a deep breath and stood up. “I’m seeing this through.”
I watched as Denny nodded to Joey. I know it was him saying to keep an eye on me. He then walked up to me and placed his hand on my head. I could see there was so much he wanted to say to me. His eyes wandered over my face and then he leaned forward and kissed my forehead.
“I know what you are thinking. But it is worth it, Clover. Because you are important to us. What happened to you has hurt us too. And we are not going to tolerate it. Don’t be rash in your decisions.” Denny messed my hair up before he turned and walked away.
I watched Alpha Scott, Denny and Jude walk out of the house. I didn’t say anything because I couldn’t find my voice. I didn’t expect this. But I also understood it wasn’t just about me. It was about establishing order. I was here because of the alpha. When they attacked me, they went against their alpha.
“Clover…” Joey’s voice came out as just a breath. I turned my head to see his intense eyes burning into me. There were so many emotions storming in his eyes. I had to put a stop to his thinking. I made my decision and I wasn’t going to change my mind.
“You have a mate out there somewhere, Joey. You are going to find her and love her. One day you will thank me for walking away. I appreciate you more than you know. Please… don’t make this harder on me than it already is.” I gave him a weak smile as I watched him slowly nod his head. I could see that he was hurt but he was respecting my decision.
“Can I at least hold you tonight? I won’t try anything. I just want to be close to you.”
I stared into Joey’s eyes and nodded my head. Honestly… it would be nice to have him close. I was anxious about tomorrow and what would come next. I wondered if I should move into the city and live as a human for now. It would probably be safer than living among the werewolves.
That night as I lay in bed, I thought about how different things would be for me. This would be my last night at the pack house. Joey held me close and had his head buried into my neck. His soft breath tickled my skin and his warmth was comforting. But having him next to me didn’t feel exciting like it should. This further proved to me that I didn’t have feelings for Joey. I couldn’t just stay with him because he was a great guy. This wouldn’t be fair to either of us. He would find his mate and he would forget all about me.
I wondered how I was able to communicate mentally with Jude earlier. I couldn’t feel Sheena at all. I was hoping it was a sign she was coming back to me. Maybe it is… I’ve never lost my wolf before to know how it works. That had to be what it was… right? I didn’t want to think anymore. I closed my eyes and relaxed… for just a moment.
“So, is this a thing now?”
I heard Denny’s voice and opened my eyes. To my surprise, the sunlight was streaming in. I blinked my eyes a few times and felt the warm arm still wrapped around my body. The events from yesterday suddenly jolted in my mind clearing the fog. I sat up and looked at Denny with wide eyes. I heard Joey groan in protest but I ignored him.
“What happened?” I asked and watched as Denny’s lips curled down.
“Taylor is being stubborn. We are going to have to continue to interrogate her, but her fate is sealed. She will be banished from the pack. We don’t need a pack member like her.” Denny’s eyes were on me and then he glanced back to Joey. I could tell the two of them were mind linking. Which reminded me that I didn’t have my wolf anymore.
“The pack leaders have already begun to arrive. I expect my officers to be ready and downstairs in five minutes.” Denny raised his eyes at me, and I jumped out of bed. I quickly grabbed some clothes and headed to the bathroom. “Oh and Clover…” I turned and looked at Denny for a moment. “We are going to do everything we can to make sure this is a safe place for you… I guess—I guess what I am saying is just think about it… please.”
I nodded my head and quickly shut the door. I couldn’t think about it right now. I didn’t want to think about it. Instead, I quickly changed into a brown sun dress with daisy’s covering it. I pulled my hair up in a ponytail and hurriedly brushed my teeth. When I stepped out of the bathroom Joey was slowly getting out of bed and Denny was still standing there.
“Hurry up or we won’t have time to scarf down some breakfast!” I watched as the two men grinned at me as I turned and left my room. I wasn’t going to think about what today meant for me. I was going to enjoy today. There was going to be a banquet for all of the pack leaders and the food would be top class. As a delta, this meant I didn’t have to be in the meetings and could browse over the food first.
I inhaled a slice of toast and then stayed in the kitchen to help out the cooks. I could see there was a lot Joey wanted to say to me but I didn’t want to talk about any of it. I just wanted to keep myself busy. Luckily, there was so much to prepare for that the cooks needed all the help they could get.
A moment later, Jude arrived. His eyes looked tired, but he had a smile on his face when he saw me. He was obviously there to keep an eye on me. Denny and Joey reluctantly left me to greet the pack leaders as they arrived.
We had been in the kitchen for a few hours, and it was now time to take the food out. These pack events usually lasted all day. They would have a buffet table constantly replenished with hot food throughout the day. And lucky me, I was able to sample these dishes first.
“Let me carry those.” Jude walked over and I shrugged him off.
“I am strong enough to carry a tray of cookies. You can grab the soup though.” I smiled as I listened to him chuckle. We followed the other maids into the banquet hall and sat our trays down. The moment we did the other wolves in the room descended upon us. They were mostly other officers that came with their alpha.
“There you guys are.” I heard Joey’s voice as he rested his hand on my shoulder.
“Can you bring out more scones?” I heard a voice and saw a set of eyes directed at me.
“She isn’t the help! She is an officer.” Joey growled out immediately.
“An officer? No shit? Wow… I’m sorry about that. I am the gamma of the Chance pack, Logan.” I looked at him and smiled.
“I am Clover, the delta of the sulfur pack. No hard feelings.” I reached my hand out and shook the man’s hand. Logan had blonde hair and brown eyes. He had an incredible bright white smile.
“Awe, are they out of scones already?” I heard a pouting man’s voice from the buffet table.
“There is more in the back. I’ll go and bring out the tray.” I looked over at Joey talking with Logan and Jude was talking to another guy. I didn’t need them to follow me. It was just down the hall. I quickly scampered off down the hall and grabbed another tray of the scones. They were always a pack favorite due to the honey butter they were made with.
I walked into the banquet room and sat the tray down on the table. The next moment, I felt someone grab me by the arm and pull me into their chest. I had to glance up to see who it was. Without my wolf senses I didn’t have a clue. I was met with Denny’s green stormy eyes. Joey and Jude were there only an instant later.
“Where were you?!” Joey growled as Denny let out a sigh of relief.
“I just went to grab more scones from the kitchen. Easy boys.” I could see their disapproving eyes and gave them a small smile. “Sorry for worrying all of you.”
“There are a lot of wolves here. Some that we haven’t met before. I want you to stay close.” Denny lifted his head up as more men entered into the room. “We are taking a lunch break. The room is about to get a lot more crowded.”
“Denny… you probably shouldn’t be treating me like I am fragile.” I gave him a crooked smile and tilted my head to the side. He was practically painting a target on my back.
“Just stay close.” Denny released his hold on me and sent a mental link to Jude and Joey. Da.mn I hated not having my wolf.
“Where is my angel? There she is!” A man with brown hair and hazel eyes said as he walked up to me. “My scone angel!” He reached out and grabbed my hands and excitedly shook them. “I have been dreaming about those scones for days now. My soul was shattered when I couldn’t find any. Then the angel of mercy showed up. Oh sweet angel of mercy, what is your name?”
I couldn’t help but laugh. This guy was so dramatic. I could see the three men beside me looking at this man with annoyance. Poor guy had no clue how many deadly vibes were being shot his way.
“It’s Clover and they are simple enough to make.” I watched as his eyes widened.
“You can make them?”
“Yes. I made the last batch that was brought out.” I smiled as he grabbed his chest. He reached for my hand and knelt down on one knee in front of me. Oh gosh, this guy was cheesy.
“Marry me goddess of the scone. Bless me with your nourishment… and maybe a fun time in bed as a bonus.”
Growls ripped through the room and before I knew it I was pulled back behind Joey. Denny, Jude and Joey were growling at this man and then Logan quickly showed up beside him. Tension was filling the room and it became very quiet. I was about to stop the confrontation when someone else grabbed my wrist and spun me around.
I looked up shocked as I stared into a set of familiar hazel eyes. The man had luscious brown hair and my fingers pressed up against his chiseled chest. My mouth parted in shock as I recognized him. It was Conrad… my one night stand gone right man. He had filled out a lot more, but it was him. Da.mn he was hot. I stood there gaping at him like a fool as his head lowered to mine. His breath was fanning my cheek, making my face heat up. He smiled at me as his other hand gently gripped into my back pulling me closer.
“Mine.” He breathed softly as he pressed his lips into my own.