“No, it is impossible for a Grey to harm his mate. Others, however, innocent or not, cannot have that promise. I have to go, Jacquelyn. Lucas’ wolves will be here any minute, and in the state I am in I cannot guarantee I will be civilized with them,” Fane told her.
Jacque was shaking her head before he even finished speaking. “I don’t want you to go,” she whispered.
Fane pulled her to the side and turned so that his back was facing the others and she was shielded from their sight. He moved her hair away from her neck and kissed her in the same spot he had before, the spot where he would leave his mark. It better be his mark, Jacque thought.
“I love you, Luna.”
“What does Luna mean?” she asked him.
“I will tell you soon, but now is not the time. I must go before the other wolves get here.” He held her a moment more, then stepped away.
Jacque snatched his hand before he could get much further and pulled him to her. She looked him in the eyes, still seeing the wolf glowing there.
“I love you, but if you let this Alpha take me as his mate, I will die just so I can come kick your royal Romanian butt. Got it?”
“Say it again,” Fane told her.
“Say that I'll kick your royal Romanian butt?” Jacque started.
“No, love. Say the first part,” Fane said adoringly.
It dawned on Jacque what he was talking about and it made her smile. She leaned in close to him and whispered, “I love you.”
“Thank you,” Fane said so softly she almost missed it. He kissed her on the forehead and turned back to the others. He looked at Sorin, who stepped forward and bared his neck again.
“You will protect her with your life or you will forfeit it,” Fane told him in a voice Jacque had never heard him use.
Sorin sank down to his knees. It didn’t look like he had meant to, it was like someone forced him there. She heard a whine come from Sorin and then Fane walked to him and laid his hand on his head. He said something in Romanian and walked to the front door.
Jacque rushed to follow him as he opened it and walked out. Just as she stepped out, a car stopped in front of her house and two men got out. Jacque grabbed Fane’s arm, not in fear for herself but fear for him. Fane instinctively took her hand without thinking about the fact that Lucas had said he didn’t want his wolves to see Fane touching her.
As soon as he touched her the other wolves growled, baring their teeth, their eyes glowing. Jacque’s breathing increased and her hand tightened on Fane’s.
Fane turned to her. “You have to let go, love. They are growling because I’m touching you.”
“I don’t give a flying sack of crap that they don’t like you touching me. I will touch who I want, I will bond with who I want, and I will not have mangy mutts growling at me in my own yard!” Jacque was yelling, had let go of Fane's hand, and was stomping toward the other wolves.
Fane was so surprised by her that he'd barely reached her as she got in the face of one of the wolves. She had her finger in his face and was yelling every expletive known to man and some not known, for that matter. Jacque had never felt so angry. How dare this Lucas whoever try to tell her what to do, dictate who could touch her, or challenge her mate.
The wolf she was yelling at was leaning back as far as he could to keep from touching her. She was no longer aware of her surroundings, she had tunnel vision, and the only thing she could see was this wolf in front of her who'd dared come in her territory. She didn’t pause to think about the fact that she had just called her yard her territory, she filed that away for later.
Jacque felt something touch her arm. She saw the angry face of the werewolf in front of her and heard him growl ferociously. She turned to see who had touched her. It was Fane. He was saying her name and trying to pull her back from the other wolf. Jacque realized they had an audience since everyone in her house had now come outside.
Jen was marching down the walkway and right into the other wolf’s face. She put her hands on her hips and glared at him. “You think I’m scared of you?” she asked sarcastically. “I’m your worst nightmare. Just remember, we all gotta sleep sometime. Hope you can sleep with one eye open,” she winked at him and turned to walk back to the house.
Jacque finally let Fane pull her back to the house, then he stepped away from her, and though she tried not to let it hurt her, she couldn’t stop the stab of rejection she felt.
“I’m not rejecting you, meu inimă. Please believe that. I’m trying to protect you,” Fane told her through his thoughts.
She looked at him and nodded her head in acknowledgment as she watched him turn toward the other wolves. He walked past them and when he made it to the street he turned and told them, “If either of you touches her I will kill you and use your pelt as a rug.” And he left.
Jacque watched him the entire way until the door to the Henrys' was closed. One of the wolves standing in her yard walked up and bared his neck to her.
“Do you think it wise to bare your throat to the one who would see it torn out?” Jacque asked, surprised by sounding so confident and in control despite the emptiness she felt without Fane by her side.
“I bare my throat in acknowledgment of my Alpha’s mate,” the wolf told her.
“Then you bare it in vain because I am NOT your Alpha’s mate. If he kills every wolf on this earth I will still not be his mate,” Jacque growled.
“Go inside, my Luna. I can feel how tired you are,” she heard Fane tell her.
“I am just fine, thank you very much. I will go inside, but not because you told me to. I’m just tired of standing out here with these butt heads,” Jacque responded.
She heard Fane laugh. She felt his joy and that made her smile, which made the wolf in front of her cock his head to the side like a dog. Jacque blew a breath out in exasperation and turned to go in the house. Before she could make it in the front door one of the wolves spoke. “Lucas said to tell you he will be here at nine am.” And that was it.
When Jacque walked in the living room, everyone was seated with a mug of what she presumed was hot chocolate. Jen grinned and winked. She saw Sorin sitting in the ugly chair and realized he had not been outside. What's up with that? she thought.
“Why did you not come out to defend your prince?” she asked him, sounding a little more accusatory than she meant to.