Read Alpha Asher [by Jane Doe] Chapter 44
I spent the next day with Adrienne on my mind. Her deep espresso skin, her startling eyes, and the way her full lips curved up in a smile. I could hardly focus on anything else. The prospect of meeting my mate that night was overwhelming. My mind flitted through the possibilities of the life we could have together.
I had gotten off work late that night. I stayed a couple hours after my shift, not wanting to go back to my Grandfather’s house. There was a constant air of stress in that house. My Dad was practically waiting for my Grandfather to slip up and treat my Mom like crap. Mom was constantly walking around on eggshells, memories from her horrible childhood resurfacing.
I hung my apron up on one of the many hooks lining the Deli’s walls and clocked out. I smelled like cold cut sandwiches, something I wasn’t too fond of.
“I’ll see you tomorrow, kid.” The owner Dev grumbled, his eyes down on the till as he counted twenty dollar bills.
“See ya, Dev.” I nodded, walking out of the Deli. The little bell on the door clanged as it slammed shut, ringing out into the empty street.
It was oddly silent for a night in the city. Usually all of the strange people came out at night, but this time there was no one. A single homeless person was slummed against the wall down one of the many alleys, but he was the only one.
My footsteps pattered against the sidewalk as I tried to remember where the park was located. Just a few blocks down the road, and then a sharp left.
Mom, Dad and I had seen the park as we were driving into town. Many people sat out in the grass or walked their dogs during the day time. At night, it had an entirely different feel to it.
The rushing waters of the fountain sounded loud in comparison to the quiet surroundings. Parts of the grass in the park were lit by crappy street lights. The benches were empty and damp with dew. Sprinklers were going off in clu*ters.
As I walked closer to the park, I could make out a clear figure sitting on one of the benches. I could only see the side of her face, but I knew it was Adrienne. My wolf howled in delight, urging me to walk faster.
Her face lit up as she saw me, my heart fluttering in response. I couldn’t have imagined my mate would be so beautiful, so strong and confident.
“I see you made it in one piece.” Adrienne smiled, her eyes twinkling under the poor streetlights.
“I managed.” I grinned, “It’s awful quiet out here.”
“I like the park at night.” Adrienne shrugged, standing from the bench. Her eyes were locked on the trickling fountain waters, a strange look on her face.
“Look, I’m sure you’re a great guy.” Adrienne opened her full lips, but I couldn’t understand the words that left them.
My wolf could feel the certainty in her tone, howling at the weight of her words.
“Adrienne–” I opened my mouth, but what could I say?
I could tell her the truth, but what normal person would believe that? I couldn’t let her go, she’s my mate. She already owned my heart, whether she knew it or not.
“I already belong to someone.” Adrienne sliced through my words. She wielded her voice like a knife, slashing at my heart. “You’re too late, Mason.”
“Doll face, you’re early.” A strange looking man grinned as he walked up to Adrienne.
Anger rushed through my veins as the man wrapped his arm around Adrienne, shooting me a sly grin as he trailed his fingers down her face.
A second man followed the first, standing close by. I recognized the second man as ‘Steph’, the one who had Adrienne pinned against the wall of the alley. A furious glare was on his face, his dark eyes burned into my own. I could feel his intense hatred rolling in waves.
“This the pup you were telling us about?” The man snickered, his eyes never leaving my own.
His hair was long and straight, the color of midnight. His eyes on the other hand were much too bright. A clear blue that almost seemed to glow in the darkness. His built was large, much larger than mine at the time. His eyes were dancing with amusement, as if this night was the highlight of his week.
Something about him was off. The wind shifted, rustling his dark hair. Not a single scent hit my nose. The only thing I could smell was Adrienne. Her tempting aroma was everywhere, but I smelled nothing of the two men at her side.
“What is he talking about?” I snapped, my eyes searching Adrienne’s face.
Her features were blank as she stared at me. Her startling eyes held no information. Pain wracked through me as she turned her eyes to the man.
“He is.” Adrienne nodded, “He’s completely clueless. Doesn’t even know what he stumbled into.”
“Good, makes it even more fun.” The man grinned, his fingers trailing over the scarlet tattoo on Adrienne’s shoulder. “Seems like the pup has a little crush on you, Adrienne.”
“Let’s get this done with, Felix.” Adrienne huffed, giving Felix a pointed look. “You know I don’t like dragging this sh*t out. I’d rather be at home.”
“I’ve got to have a little fun, love.” Felix gave me a sly grin as he threaded his fingers through Adrienne’s curls, bringing her lips to his own.
I could’ve sworn my heart stopped. It wasn’t technically a rejection, but it might as well have been. My body was wracked with pain, tremors of it ran up my torso. My wolf howled mercilessly, unable to bare the pain of losing his mate.
I had heard countless stories of people rejected by their mates, never did I fully understand how bad it hurt. Never did I think it could happen to me.
Felix released Adrienne, turning to face me. His eyes glinted darkly as he stalked towards me. He slipped his heavy jacket from his shoulders, handing it back to Adrienne without sparing her a glance.
I could clearly make out the scarlet tattoo on Felix’s shoulder, identical to Adrienne’s. Matching tattoo’s–I had time to think about the stupid idea, when Felix lunged forward.
I knew they were no match for me. A werewolf against a human—The human didn’t stand a chance. I let my claws extend, thankful my wolf was listening to me at the moment. His sorrow still swirled around in my head, giving me the start of a migraine.
Felix lunged, knocking me to the ground roughly.
Fear broke through me, chilling me and filling me with a horrible sense of dread. The strength he had was much more than a mere human, his speed triple that of a human. I was breathless on the ground, a stammering mess as I looked into the eyes of my mate.
Her bright eyes were detached, looking at me vacantly. I tried to plead with her, to tell her how I felt with my eyes. I could see the acceptance in them, I could see that she knew exactly what we were to one another.
“W-What are you?” I stammered, struggling to pull myself from the ground.
Felix’s face broke out into a grin, a joyful grin.
“Wouldn’t you like to know, pup.” He chuckled, his laugh sounding cold and hollow. “It’s more fun this way. You’ll die never knowing what was responsible. You should’ve never left your pack, mutt.”
Adrienne turned her eyes away from me, and I braced myself for the worst.
I can’t begin to explain what the pain of losing your mate felt like. Like half of your soul was torn away from you, leaving you shredded beyond recognition. I wasn’t thinking of my Mom or Dad, I wasn’t thinking about anything other than her. It was like my will to live had been su*ked from me, all by her cold stare. I didn’t care that I might die here. I didn’t care that some unknown creature was going to kill me. Even my wolf lost the will to fight, simply whimpering at the loss of his mate.
Felix lunged forward, again and again.
Tearing, shredding, slashing. I couldn’t keep track of what he was doing to me. I could feel the pain, mingling with the loss of my mate. The physical pain was like a beacon, distracting me from the pain my own mate was putting me through. My mind had stopped trying to figure out why this was happening, why she had chosen someone else. The only thing I could smell was my mates scent, coupled with my own life-blood. The only thing I could hear was my gurgling breaths, slowing by the second.
“Leave him to die.” Felix chuckled, but it sounded warped in my ears. “Steph, come get his body in the morning.”
Felix was right, I was dying. The physical pain was gone now, but my body felt like dead weight. I couldn’t see what he had done to me, nor could I see the park. All I could see was the dark sky, lit up by a brilliant moon and hundreds of stars.
“Give me a minute with the pup.” My mate’s voice was sweet, sultry. “After all, he did have a little crush on me.”
“Adrienne.” Felix chuckled, “Always getting attached to the victims. Go on, have your fun. Don’t cut his life short, I enjoy letting them bleed out. Gives them time to think.”
“Of course.” Adrienne cooed.
I wasn’t sure what was going on, all I focused on was Adrienne’s voice. Her rich voice, filled with emotion I would never be on the receiving end of.
“Hey you.” Her voice was much closer now. Her scent swirled around me, bringing me back from the depths of unconsciousness.
“Adrienne.” I tried to speak her lips, but couldn’t form the words. My voice was silent, a strange gurgling sound leaking from my lips.
“Shh, don’t speak.” Adrienne’s voice was strong, sure of herself. “I know what you are, werewolf. I know what I am to you.”
I wanted to speak more than anything, to understand why she had done this to me. I didn’t care how she knew what I was, it didn’t matter. I just needed to know why she rejected me, why my love couldn’t be enough for her.
“I want you to know, I already made my choice long ago. You came too late, Mason.” Adrienne sounded almost sorry, her cold voice thawing in the slightest.
“I, Adrienne LaFont—reject you as my mate, Mason.” The coldness was gone from her voice, but she was right. She had made her decision long ago, and there was no changing it.
I let myself slip into the darkness, welcoming the reprieve from my pain.