~2~

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Leanna's eyes became impossibly wide as her wolf went berserk inside her. Her wolf wanted nothing more than to shift in that very moment and be near their mate's wolf. Leanna's nerves were getting the best of her, her stomach tied so tightly in knots she feared she would see her food soon.

Slowly, her mate turned her in his arms and she saw a dark, button down shirt that fit him exceptionally well. Her eyes drifted upward and she saw light pink lips curled into a smile so large she spotted a dimple on his right cheek.

Her eyes swept over a strong nose and toward his eyes. The breath caught in her chest as she saw the hazel eyes. The were brown toward the pupil and rimmed in blue toward the outside.

His hair was as black as the midnight sky and long, falling to his chin and messy in a stylish way. She met his eyes once more and saw that they were staring her with an emotion so intense it made her light-headed.

"Leanna," his deep voice spoke again, sending chills down her spine.

Her wolf howled in glee at speaking their name and Leanna found herself letting out a breath she hadn't realized she was holding.

"Y-you know my name?" she stuttered shyly, a blush warming her cheeks.

His smile, if possible, widened and he answered, "Of course I do. I know all pack members."

Embarrassment filled her and she felt the urge to hide her face.

Of course he knows me, I'm in his pack.

Her wolf didn't seem to mind it, still jumping excitedly inside her. Leanna looked up at her Alpha and mate, her heart feeling as if it was going to explode.

"Alpha Vincent-"

"Just Vincent, love. You are my equal," he interrupted, his hands grabbing her waist and pulling her close.

Being so close to him made her aware of just how much taller he was and she shivered. Her nerves were beginning to calm from his touch and she bit her lip. She felt his chest rumble with a growl and saw his eyes begin to darken.

"Come with me," he said, grabbing her small hand in his and entwining their fingers together, leading her outside.

She frowned and followed, confusion filling her as they stood on the back deck beside the buffet. Everyone immediately sensed their Alpha and the music stopped, turning toward them and bowing their heads respectfully, their eyes skimming over Leanna.

Leanna spotted her parents among the crowd of five hundred and but couldn't make out the looks on their faces.

The Beta, Rick, and the Delta, Gabriel, walked forward, standing at the front of the crowd. Vincent cleared his throat and though his voice was calm and not all that loud, everyone heard him,

"After being gone ten years, I am back. For good. My Beta will step down from my duties and resume his own. And before the festivities may continue, I have a new announcement. Shortly after I arrived, I came upon my mate and your Luna, Leanna Darrow."

The entire pack erupted into cheers, clapping loudly and whistling their congrats, howling into the moon at having found their Luna.

Leanna's heart nearly stopped at the sudden announcement and found herself wishing for the safety of her parents, where she wasn't suddenly in charge of an entire pack. Her hand went limp and clammy in Vincent's hand and he felt it, his wolf picking up on the sudden distress their mate was feeling.

As crowd continued to cheer, he leaned down and whispered into her ear, "Just a few more minutes, love."

She felt herself nod, her wolf not at all nervous about anything, just content to have her mate with her at last.

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