"I'm not going to help Cody though, this is for me. Plus it'd be nice to visit  some of my friends." I grinned at them, slowly pulling on my resolve. I can do this, I chanted to myself.




.........

The next day....



I stared up at Cody's pack house once more. It feels so long ago I ran out of here heartbroken, now staring at it all those emotions tried flooding back in. Lucas reached over and squeezed my hand. "You okay?" He mouthed, glancing at the guys in the front seat. I gave him a small smile and nodded. Dylan and Nigel got out of the car wordlessly leaving me with Lucas to talk. "So why are we here, Julia?" Lucas asked watching me try to regain my poseur.

"We are here to see Max..." I glanced at him nervously causing him to cock an eyebrow at me. "And to prove to both me and him that I'm better off without him." He searched my face before a huge grin spread  across his.

"Alright then," He held his hand out to me. "shall we show you off?" I smiled taking his hand letting him lead me across the back seat and out the car. I glanced up smiling to lock eyes with Cody. I felt like someone kicked the wind out of me. Lucas slid his arm around me to steady me looking concerned suddenly. I smiled gratefully up at him as we headed towards the house and a very aggravated Cody.

"Juls." He whispered, as we drew closer I saw a hint of a smile on his face. I focused hard behind him as I shoved past him to his sister.

"Rebel!" I called as she ran into my arms laughing.

She embraced me tightly. "His face is priceless right now. " I smiled to myself. She pulled back to assess me. "You look great." She grinned. I waved at Emily who was shyly standing only feet away.  Suddenly I felt someone pick me up and swing me around. I couldn't help the giggle that pressed it's self out of my mouth.

"Max!" I screamed over the laughter.

"Damn! Woman you look good." He winked setting me down. Stacy stepped into view glaring at him. He looked at her apologetically, but winked at me again.

I glanced around at my friends happily until my eyes landed on a sulking Cody. He didn't move just stared at me like I was a ghost.

"So where are you two staying?" Max asked bringing my attention back to their conversation. I frowned at the question cause I never considered that.

Lucas glanced at my alarmed face and smiled before pulling me closer to him. "We are staying in a cabin near the edge of the territory. We talked it over and thought that it'd be smarter." He said grinning down at me. I smiled at him, but couldn't help but wonder what he thought he was doing as everyone looked at us with curious and shocked faces.

"No." It was barely a whisper, but I caught it. "No." Cody growled out now glaring at Lucas like he kicked his puppy. Lucas glared back at Cody pulling me behind him to protect me. I placed my hand on his back softly letting him know I was okay before stepping around him. I knew Cody would never physically hurt me.... would he? Lucas glanced down at me and I gave him a reassuring smile. He relaxed a little, but didn't let his eyes leave Cody's.

"I'm tired." I lied faking a yawn. " How about we go and rest for a bit?" I asked Lucas he nodded once. I glanced at Cody to find him watching me. He looked so torn I wanted to just kiss him and tell him I love him, but then him yelling at me to get out rang through my head. I felt myself harden as I glared at him. "Let's go Lucas." I grabbed Lucas's hand and practically dragged him outside.

Once we were out of ear shot from the house I turned on Lucas. "What are you doing?" I hissed.

He gave me an impatient look. "Julia calm down." He reached for me, but I stepped out of reach. "Julia..... Will you please calm down?" He pleaded.

"Lucas I'm not your property to stake a claim on." I glared crossing my arms not giving any ground.

He sighed. "No your not Julia, I'm sorry." He apologized.

I dropped my guard knowing it was my turn. " I can't be fighting both of you...." Even to me my voice sounded defeated. He grabbed my chin and tilted my face up.

"Trust me Julia. " He murmured. "Now I'm going to go to the cabin. You go back and act like everything is fine." He smiled.

I nodded and watched his retreating back. I turned on my heels and trudged back to the house. When I got to the house everyone had scattered already, so I decided to explore since I never really had a chance the last time. I walked through the back door to a large patio. In the distance I could see a garden. 

I walked through all the colorful flowers and had an itch for a paintbrush. I could paint this all day I thought as I watched the butterflies flutter around.  I found a white marble bench in the middle of the garden and laid down on it watching the clouds pass by.  I watched the sun dip across the sky into night before I heard the first footsteps approach. I knew who it was before they spoke. I could smell that woodsy cinnamon smell even over the scent of the flowers.

"How long have you been out here?" His voice sent a shiver down my spine. I didn't answer just continued to watch the sky above us. I felt him sit on the ground leaning against the bench. "Are you two happy?" He asked breaking the silence.

"Two?" I asked glancing at him confused.

He gave me an exasperated look. "You and Lucas, Juls."  I couldn't help the smile that formed on my face from my nickname. " I'll take that as a yes." He sounded sad, I turned my attention back to the sky. "For what it's worth..... I'm sorry how I reacted." I felt my chest tighten slightly. "I didn't mean to hurt you, Juls. I was just caught off guard, I had started thinking of our future then you just busted that bubble out of no where. It's not an excuse... I just wanted to let you know that I am sorry."

I heard him move to leave, but before I could stop myself I grabbed his wrist stopping him. He looked down at me and I let out a gasp. I stood up surprising him and traced my thumbs across his face. He looked like he hadn't slept since I left. He had this sad haunted look in his eyes.

" Are you okay Cody?" I asked biting my lip. I couldn't handle seeing my strong pig headed mate looking so broken, so not his self. He just stared at me not answering for what felt like an eternity.

He shook his head as if he was trying to get rid of a thought. "I hope Lucas gives you everything you deserve." He said pulling out of my grasp. Finally, it clicked what he was saying.

"Cody," I called, half surprised when he stopped. "Me and Lucas aren't together. You know that right?" 

He didn't face me. "But.... But the way you two were earlier...."He trailed off.

"You hurt me, Cody. You hurt me to the point, I didn't think I'd survive..... Lucas helped me out of it. He grew protective of me, but we...... we are just friends." I slowly walked closer til my hand was on his shoulder. I felt the familiar shocks, it was hard to ignore since my wolf decided to show her face. I sighed in relief it's been so long since I have felt that part of me. He turned so he was facing me.

"I'm so sorry Juls." I could see the tears collecting in his eyes. "I should have never let you get in that car." I reached up and brushed a stray tear.

"No you shouldn't of." I whispered.

" I am so sorry you saw that with Stacey" He continued,

I stepped closer to him and cupped his cheek. "Cody..." I said looking into his unsure face. "Shut up please." I leaned into him and kissed him.

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