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I didn't get very far.

Ethan stands with his arms across his chest as he stares at me. I try to get around him, but he is quick to block my way. It's like he can see every thought that crosses my mind and is able to be that step ahead of me. What is he doing? I have to go help the warriors! Why is he in my way?

Ugh and I can't even talk to him without shifting! 

Just as I am about to try to get around him again, he speaks.

"You're not really deserving of him."

My eyes snap to his, all thoughts of the attack completely removed from my mind. What did he mean by that

I can't help but growl a little. I, nor my wolf for that matter, appreciate the comment. He doesn't even know that I'm protecting him! That I love him!

Ethan just raises his hands in mock surrender with a smug look on his face. He knows he hit a nerve but he doesn't care.

I watch his eyes flit past me landing on Thomas. I use his distraction to try and run right past him, but he is quicker than I am.

At the last second he grabs my back paw causing me to crash to the ground with a thump. I growl in frustration, but quickly whimper when I feel the needle poke my skin. I collapse to the ground. Drowsiness starts to kick in as I feel my wolf going further away.

"He asked me to wolfsbane you to keep you safe. You just got to him first." He puts a blanket over me just as I'm about to shift back.

I can't fight the wolfsbane. I can hardly think straight. The grass is cool under my body as I stare with blurry eyes at Ethan.

"You two are so much alike. Not that you noticed." he mutters before shifting and running away towards where the pack went.

**

I don't know when I lost consciousness. I just remember laying naked in the grass, with a blanket over me as Ethan's brown wolf got smaller and smaller.

Stupid Ethan.

I stir slightly, my senses slowly, but surely, coming back to me. I stiffen quickly noticing a couple different things immediately.

First - I'm no longer on the grass but in a bed. A bed that's not mine, I might add.

Second - I'm no longer naked, I can feel a cotton like fabric clinging to my body.

I open my eyes slightly only to have my breath catch at the sight in front of me.

Thomas sits in a chair across the room staring at me. One of his legs resting over the other, his hand resting under his chin thoughtfully. Noticing me awake, he shifts forward and rests his elbows on his knees. His piercing gaze never wavering from mine.

Whereas mine is a look of confusion, his is a look of anger and betrayal.

I force myself to look away and take a deep breath. Slowly I sit up and rest my back against the headboard. I try to think of anything to say, but nothing seems right. How can it be with millions of words, I can't think of any that will work right now?

"I don't even know what to say right now, Hailey." Well, that makes two of us.

I don't respond. Instead, I risk a glance at Thomas but he is staring intently at his hands. His shoulders are tense and I can practically feel the emotions rolling off of him.

So much anger and confusion, it hurts to even think about. Every cell in my body is pulling me towards him, screaming at me to comfort him. But I don't move.

"Thomas, I'm -"

"What were you even thinking?!" He exploded cutting me off. His eyes were dark, but I knew he still had control.

"You told Ethan to do the same to me."

"Of course I did! That psychopath was probably looking for you. You thought I was gonna let you walk right in there and be like "hey son-of-a-bitch who kidnaps people. You want me, here I am on a silver platter cuz my mate did nothing!" He flew out of the chair, running a hand through his hair in frustration, but his eyes stayed locked on mine.

His stare was intense. I could almost feel it looking right through my skin, peering straight at my soul.

"I had to protect you." My voice is small as shame fills my body.

"Protect me?" He laughs humorlessly before continuing, "You're kidding me, right?!"

"I don't expect you to understand." I say.

It's the only thing that I knew to be true. He wouldn't understand my choice - no, my need - to protect him. To make sure that he is home, safe, where no harm can come his way. I would put my life on the line for him.

"After Cade, I -" I start only to be caught off.

"Cade. Of Course. I should have guessed!" His head drops as he paces a little in front of the bed, hands on his hips as he mutters incoherently.

We lapse into a silence. Each of us lost in our own thoughts. I give him a few minutes to cool off and collect his thoughts. I know that Cade has been a big source of my apprehension, but I want to move past that now. I'm hoping Thomas will see that I am serious, but that won't happen if he is angry.

Finally, Thomas looks at me. His face a mask as he tries to read my expression.

I wonder what he finds?

"I can't keep doing this, Hailey. One minute I think everything is great and the next minute, a Cade size hole is ripped between us. I love you." He says the last part in a broken whisper and I can't help feeling like shit, knowing I caused him to feel this way.

I crawl to the edge of the bed, opening my mouth to protest but he holds his hand up, silencing my words as he just stares at me.

I follow his line of sight and notice for the first time that I am wearing nothing but a large black t-shirt. I look back up and notice his Adam's apple bob slightly before he looks away.

He stares at the floor like it is so interesting, clearing his throat a moment before he speaks.

"I, Thomas Haynes, reject -"

"NO! DON'T!" I leap towards him, covering his mouth with my hands. 

In any other situation, I would enjoy the tingles the flow between us and the feel of his lips on the palm of my hand. But right now I feel like a terrified little girl about to lose the thing she loves most.

"I meant every word I said before I gave you the wolfsbane." My voice is shaking and I can feel myself trembling.

I'll admit it, I'm scared. Terrified even as I stare into his guarded eyes. They didn't even twitch with my words. My breathing quickens as my heart picks up speed.

What if I'm too late?

<3 <3 <3 <3



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