Chapter 60

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Trudging back to the castle, the aftermath of the fight was still in progress. Warriors being stitched back together, women weeping over their lost love, children crying over the bodies of their deceased parents. The damage was extensive, and in process of being repaired. 

The Dark Moon Pack sent reinforcements for the repair of the Royal Outland Silver Blood Pack. From what the King was told, it was the Daemon's final order before he set off. 

When the King arrived with the Queen, and those who fought the demons, everyone stood aside. There was a stark silence while they walked through. Some were crying, others were paying their respects to those lost. 

Ezekiel kept his eyes forward, not engaging anyone. Though he was somewhat pleased that his brother had recovered, and Daemon was improving, it did nothing to ease the pain he was feeling carrying his Queen's comatose body. 

Laying her down on their bed, he covered her with the comforter, assuring that if she woke, she wouldn't be cold. All he did was gaze at her sleeping face, watching her chest rise and fall. Recalling what happened in the forest, he was angry at himself for not being able to do more. Never once had he felt helpless. It was a feeling that he never wanted to experience again. 

"Your Majesty, the Queen seems to be making great progress. I suppose now only time will tell when she will wake up." The pack doctor spoke to the King, but the King's attention was squared on the sleeping woman. 

"Thank you," he whispered to the doctor. 

Quill walked by the doctor when he entered, informing him of the situation. Nodding, they went their separate ways. "How is she?" 

"The doctor said she was improving, but it doesn't seem that way. She's still comatose, and still not here with me. Not smiling. Not laughing. What if--"

"Don't, Zeke. Don't do this to yourself. At least she's alive--"

"At what cost?!"

Sighing deeply, Quill didn't want to enrage his brother any further. "She knew exactly what she was doing, Zeke. If there was any other way, she would have found it. It wasn't as though there was another choice for any of us. We had to fight as hard as we could. What we didn't realize was that your Queen was directly related to the Moon Goddess. At least the Goddess was kind enough to let her live." 

Turning to his little brother, tears pooled in his eyes. "But she never gave me a guarantee that she would wake up. What do I do if-if--" Ezekiel couldn't even finish his sentence. The sheer pain of the thought of losing his mate was too much for his soul to fathom. "I can't make it without her!" he exclaimed. 

Embracing his older brother, Quill's heart was breaking the more he listened. He knew, for a fact, that his brother would crumple if Aylin left the world. Once again, he would watch someone else in his family succumb to the pain of a lost mate. "Why don't you get some rest?" he offered. "You haven't left his room since we got back. You've barely slept. It's not healthy. Take a nap in my room. I'll stay with her for awhile." 

"I don't want to leave her." 

Pulling Ezekiel to his feet, Quill shoved his brother out of the room. "Go on. Get some sleep. If anything changes, then I'll come running. I swear." 

Conceding, the King left the room. 

Sitting down in the same seat, Quill gently took Aylin's hand. Running his thumb over her knuckles, he sighed. "You know, Ay, we need  you to wake up. I'm still really pissed off and need to give you a serious tongue lashing. How could you think sacrificing yourself was the best thing to do? Clearly, you don't know what your decision has done to Zeke, to all of us. We need you to come back. But, I think most of all, Zeke needs to see you smile again, be happy, go back to the way it was. You can't just go and leave us all here. Please don't go. You're my best friend. Please, Ay." 

Wiping his eyes, Quill hoped his words made some sort of impact. It was a long shot, but there was never going to be a good time to say those things. Part of the reason he wanted his brother out of the room was because he wanted a moment to say his piece. If things had been different, then he would have taken Aylin as his own. Something he could never vocalize for fear of repercussions. 

Catching his breath, a sudden movement on his hand caught his attention. Looking at her face, Aylin's eyes were fluttering open. 

"That's it, girl. You can do it. Squeeze my hand if you can hear me." Squeezing hard, the Beta flinched. "Look at me," he encouraged. 

Blinking a few times, she turned her head. Vision still blurry, Aylin couldn't make out who was in front of her. "Zeke?" 

Frowning slightly, Quill finally realized he lost. "I'll go get him." 

Sprinting as fast as he could, right as he was about to throw the door open, Ezekiel had already beaten him to the punch. "She's awake?"

"How'd you know?" 

"She linked me. Bring the doctor." 

Charging off, Ezekiel threw the door open to their room. What he saw put him in awe. Aylin was sitting up in bed, looking out the window. 

"Sweetheart?" he choked out. 

Turning toward the voice, Aylin smiled. "My King." 

Rushing toward her, Ezekiel threw his arms around her, if only to make sure this wasn't a hallucination. Cupping her face in his hands, the shine of her eyes made his heart flutter. Those eyes that he missed for so long. "I can't believe it." 

Pressing her forehead to his, her small hands caressed his cheeks. "I'm here, Zeke." 

Running his fingers through her hair, the soft feel of her silky hair was real. So real, in fact, that he started to cry. Feeling the tears on her shoulder, Aylin wrapped her arms tighter around his neck, rocking him back and forth, as though consoling a child. 

Their reverie was interrupted when Quill and the pack doctor came into the room. Still holding onto each other, the thought of letting go was far too hard for both of them. The voice of reason brought them back to their senses. 

"Zeke, the doctor needs to examine her." 

Coming bak to himself, Ezekiel kept his back turned as he furiously wiped the tears from his face. "Don't take too long. She needs rest."

After a thorough exam, the doctor had some surprising news. "Your Majestys, it seems as though you're still expecting." 

"How is that possible?" Aylin asked. 

"I'm not sure, but it seems your pup held on through it all. Congratulations, you're going to have a baby." 

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