The Silent Alpha Chapter 10: Mate: Part 2
“I’m Kota,” he giggles, climbing off my lap.
“What’s your name mister?”
The boy grins back at me, not an ounkce of judgment in his tiny body.
His pretty eyes sparkle with excitement as he waits patiently for my response.
I have been asked for my name many times in my lifetime, usually for unpleasant reasons, but never had anyone asked just for the simple reason of getting to know me.
My father asked me my name everyday growing up and everyday I disappointed him.
Last night, my own mate wanted my name so she could reject me.
And yet, this little boy with blue and brown eyes just wanted to know who the stranger in the bushes was.
His smile is infectious and as I stare silently at him, he furrows his brows and leans in close.
“Are you dead too?” He whispers, resting his chin in his hands.
“I know a dead person,” he hisses.
“Her name is Egg-Ness,” he adds matter of factly.
“She can’t hear.”
He suddenly stands close to my ear and shouts, “Can you hear me!?”
We hear Talia call out and I place my hand over his mouth.
Kota laughs when his mother walks right past us again without noticing our presence.
The little boy dusts off his hands and squeezes my cheeks together.
“I like you,” he laughs.
“Do you wanna play with me?”
He stares at me with his blue and brown eyes and for the first time in years, I feel completely at ease.
“Y-yes,” I whisper.
His grins, grabbing hold of my hand and dragging me out of the bushes.
“Come on!” He squeals.
“There are dragons chasing us! Mommy’s the princess. We have to save her!”
He pulls me in the direction that his mother had walked to and we stop just before Talia, her eyes narrowing to slits when she sees me with her son.
Oh dear Moon Goddess…I avoid her stare and shift uncomfortably on my feet, my legs itching to sprint out of there.I can feel my mate glaring at me and I try to run but Kota has a firm grip on my hand.
“Mommy look!” Kota smiles proudly at himself.
“I found a friend.His name is….”
He stops himself and looks up at me with a grin.
“What’s your name?”
Talia ignores me and grabs her son, ripping him out of my grip. She crouches down so that she’s at his eye level and looks at him sternly strangers! It’s dangerous!”
She snaps, the little boy’s lip quivering at the harshness of her voice.
“No buts, Kota,” she retorts, her cheeks slightly flushed in anger.
Her face softens when Kota’s eyes fill with tears and she takes a deep breath.
“Okay.Okay.I’m sorry, baby,” she whispers, pulling the boy to her chest and k!ssing his head.
“I’m sorry for yelling. I didn’t mean to. You just can’t talk to strangers like that, okay?” She sighs quietly.
Kota nods solemnly.
“I’m sorry,” he says, k!ssing her cheek.
“Okay, go stand by that tree over there,” she says, k!ssing him back and pointing to a tree just behind me.
“Don’t wander off.I just need to talk to your friend, okay?”
He nods his head and runs off to the tree, grabbing a stick and waving it around like a sword.
“If you ever get near my son again, Zane, I will kill you.Do I make myself clear?” Talia asks, her voice a bit strained.
I nod my head, unable to explain the misunderstanding.She taps her foot impatiently as she thinks for a moment.
“Good.Now let’s get this rejection over with so we can both move on with our lives.”
My heart beats uncontrollably, Grayson whispering his plan in my head.
“I know your name,” she continues, her eyes full of security job, and living with friends and your mother, my best guess is that you’re a reckless wolf… A Rogue.”
I gulp and she smirks triumphantly at me.
Damn it, she’s good, Grayson grumbles.
“Did I guess right?” She asks, tilting head slightly to the side in amusement.
A silence falls between us, the only sounds coming from Kota as he jumps and roars to himself, swinging the large stick at an invisible dragon.
“Okay, well like I said, I’m not interested in a mate or any other werewolf tradition, so if you could just accept my rejection, that would be great,” she adds with an insincere smile.
“I, Talia Ramos, reject you, Zane White, a rogue as my mate.” I brace myself for the pain but to my surprise, I feel nothing.
Talia stares at me in confusion, running her hands through her hair.
“Okay maybe I said it wrong,” she sighs.
“I Talia Ramos, reject you Zane White as my mate.”
I blink at her, still feeling absolutely nothing.
She must be saying something wrong …Grayson said.
Or perhaps only a wolf can initiate a rejection?
“Okay, you say it,” Talia demands.
“You reject me and I’ll accept.”
The ball is in our court, Grayson says. Perhaps my plan may work. I shake my head at my mate and my heart breaks as her eyes fill with tears.
“Please,” she whimpers, getting down on her knees and holding her hands up in prayer.
“Please reject me. I’ll do anything.Anything.Please, just let me go. I can’t do this again. I can’t…”
What can’t she do again? I wonder. Her voice breaks and a sob escapes her throat.
Unable to take more of her crying, I crouch down and pull her close to my chest.
Talia thrashes her arms against me and screams at me to let her go but I only hold her tighter until she finally gives in and sobs into my shirt.
I smooth down her hair and rest my chin on her head.
Please don’t cry…
I want to tell her but as always, the words taste like cotton in my mouth.
Kota stops his game and runs over to us, his eyes growing wide.
“Mommy what’s wrong?” He asks, wedging his small body between mine and Talia’s so that he can see her face.
“Why you sad mommy?” Talia wipes her tears and k!sses her son on the head.
“Why you cry, mommy?” He frowns when she pulls away from my arms.
He takes his little fingers and forces her cheeks up into a smile.
“There. All better!” in her arms and smothering him in k!sses as he squeals.
I feel a small pain in my heart as I remember all the small k!sses my mother gave me after a beating from my father.
She was the only person aside from Agnes who didn’t make me feel like a freak.
Talia steals a quick glance at me, her distrust for me still lingering in her eyes.
“Let’s make a deal,” I sign and to my dismay, she shakes her head.
“I don’t know what you’re saying,” she whispers.
“I only understand a little ASL.” I frown and search for a small stick to use as a pen in the dirt.
“Let’s go to your house,” I write.
She bites her lip as she contemplates my offer and I understand her concern.I might be her mate but I am a stranger after all.
“I won’t hurt you,” I write.
She picks up her boy and nods in the direction of the town.
Talia has a beautiful home with a white picket fence surrounding the lawn and a big tree perfect for a child to climb on. She invites me in and has me sit at the dining table while she fixes Kota a snack.
Kota is quite rambunctious and performs a nonsensical skit for story but I clap when he’s finished nonetheless.
“Kota, why don’t you let Zane and I talk a little while you go out and play?” She asks, handing him some toys to play with.
He fusses a little but she manages to convince him to leave us with a promise for ice cream later that evening.
With Kota occupied, Talia finds a notebook and hands it to me.
“Talk,” She says, bringing over a jar of pens for me to use.
Here goes nothing, I sigh, scribbling out my plan.
She watches me anxiously, bringing her knees up on the chair and hugging them.
When I’m all finished, I hand her the notebook and she reads it out loud.
“You know what lam so I assume you must know what it means to have a mate and their importance In my world. I do not know your reasons for wanting to reject me but I can assure you, I will not accept it. I do not plan to throw my gift from Moon Goddess away. So I propose a deal”
You agree to be my mate for the next three months and if I can convince you that I can be a good mate, you accept my mark.
But if after three months, you still find the thought of spending the rest of your life with me repulsive, I will reject you and never ls he serious? He expects me to fall in love with him in just three months? I was in love with Christian for over two years and it meant nothing to him! I look up from the page and glare at him.
“This is a joke, right?” I laugh half heartedly, tossing the page at him.
His brows furrow in frustration and he once again scribbles on another page and hands it to me.
“I will not accept your rejection unless you give me a chance.”
“WHY?” I snap, unable to understand why he, a perfect stranger, wanted me for no other reason than for some silly sparks.
“Why is this so f*g important to you?”
He hesitates a little, the pen shaking slightly in his hand.
After a long pause, he lets out a sigh and scribbles a few words on the page.
“I have never been in love and I would like to know what it’s like to have a mate.” I roll my eyes at him.
“Hate to break it to you, but love isn’t real and mates are a f*g joke. It’s just some stupid fantasy you wolves made up to get what you want. They’re not real. They mean nothing!”
He stares at me in disbelief and writes furiously on his page. I read his words several times, furious that I was once again at the mercy of some wolf for my freedom.
“You won’t let this go will you?” I ask, dreading his answer.
“No,” he signs, pinching his fingers together.
I blink away the angry tears burning in my eyes. I know how strong the bona’s attraction is.
Christian merely had to look at me and he could have me on my knees if he wanted.
Can I really survive another mate? Another three months with a wolf? Will be strong enough to resist Zane and this revolting bond? I stare out the window and see Dakota playing with his toys.
He was the only good gift a wolf ever gave me…and I almost didn’t survive him.
“Okay, darling.One last push,”
Gwen calls out as I fight to catch my breath.
I scream, my legs shaking from exhaustion.
“I’m not strong enough,” I sob, wanting to give up.
“I can’t. I can’t. I can’t. I -I’m just a human!”
“Look at me, Talia,”
Gwen snaps, cupping my cheeks in her hands.
“You’re not just human. Do you hear me? You are worth so much more than every she-wolf who’s ever done this before and your pack should be ashamed for letting you go. They didn’t deserve you, darlin but you deserve every ounce of happiness this pup will bring.
“Can’t,” I weep, shaking my head furiously at her.
“I’m too scared, What if! can’t do this?”
“It’s okay to be scared,”
Gwen smiles, stroking my hair to soothe me.
“But I know you can do this. I know you are stronger than anyone I’ve ever met. Don’t let your fears be the reason you can’t be happy. Talia, you deserve to be happy with your pup. Don’t you want to hold him?”
I nod as she wipes sweat from my forehead.
“Then push for me, darting. Push!”
I grip the sides of the bathtub and brace my feet against its porcelain walls, using every ounce of my strength until at last, I hear the most beautiful sound in the world.
“Oh Tali,” Gwen cries as she cuts the cord and cleans my baby off “He’s perfect. He’s a perfect little angel.”
I had survived Christian’s betrayal, I had survived a werewolf birth, and I would survive Zane. I harden my face and snatch the stupid notebook from Zane’s hands.
“Fine. We’ll do it your way,”
I snarl at him, his face lighting up with a small smile. I hate that he can make butterflies flutter in my belly with just one look.
“You have three months to make me accept you. If you don’t, you reject me.NO EXCEPTIONS!” Zane begins scribbling on the notebook again.”
I have rules.
Oh for f**”s sake! I nearly scream at him.
“What are they?” I sigh, just a few seconds from losing my mind.
He writes out a list and hands it to me.
“1. I move in and we share the bedroom like a couple. No s****I relations. We just share the room.
2.I walk you to work every day and I get to hold your hand.
3.We share at least one meal together everyday. Doesn’t matter which.
4.One date night a week.Your pick.
5.Quit your job at The Masque, immediately.
“My fists clench as I read his ridiculous requests and I hear him gulp in fear.You better fear me, you bastard!
“What about me?” I scoff.
“Don’t I get a say in this stupid arrangement?”
“What are your conditions?” he writes.
I grab a pen from the jar and write down my rules.
“1.You pay rent.$800.
2.You cook and clean.Everyday.I expect dinner by the time I get home from work. him up. He’s in at 8 am and off at 5:00pm sharp.
3.Don’t be late.
4.You keep your wolf things to yourself.I don’t want to see your wolf.I don’t want to meet him.I don’t want your wolf anywhere near my son.
5.Exclusivity. For the next three months, you are not to look at another woman, be near another woman, or speak to another woman. Break this rule and all bets are off. We end this arrangement and you give me my rejection.”
He reads over the list and frowns, a bit disappointed by my requests which pleases me.
At least I won’t be the only miserable one in this arrangement.
Hopefully, he’ll hate it enough to just hand me my freedom and leave me alone.
He writes one more thing on a slip of paper and hands it to me.
“Can Agnes stay here too?” I glance down the hall and think of the spare guest room we have.
She could fit nicely there.
“Rent goes up to $1000,” I shrug and he nods in approval.
“So do we have adeal? ” he writes, holding out a shy hand to me.
I begrudgingly take it, ignoring the incredible sparks that race through my body from his touch.
“You have a deal, wolf.”