Read Mated to the Alpha Twins [by Jane Doe] Chapter 34
Grace had let me leave the classroom without any hassle. Her m*******s and slightly unhinged demeanor faded as soon as I told her the truth. She even had the audacity to chat with me, asking about my plans once I had left.
What frightened me more than her bold threat against Tori was the way she changed with the flip of a switch. I gave rushed, one worded answer in a hurry to leave the classroom.
I had just enough time to mask the fear and disgust on my face before Tori found me in the halls. She had already grabbed what she needed from her locker, wandering around in search of me. Her face contorted in confusion as she saw the heat fill my cheeks. Understanding flashed in her eyes as they traveled down my neck. Without a doubt, she was thinking of Alec and Kade.
I sat quietly as Tori drove the two of us to the restaurant. We both ran in, grabbing our checks from the manager on duty.
“I’m still waiting for that explanation y’know.” Tori’s orange eyebrow lifted as she shot me a stern look.
My stomach flipped and a chill spread over my skin. I had promised Tori explanations for a lot of things, explanations I couldn’t give.
I had planned to leave a note for her when I left, one explaining what Grace had done to me. Grace’s threat against Tori made me question whether that was the right decision or not. While Tori could handle herself, Grace was incapable of thinking clearly. It was just another thing I would need to think on.
While I wanted nothing to happen to Tori, it was eating me alive that Grace would get away with this. She had successfully chased me out of town, not that I hadn’t been planning it regardless.
I couldn’t see what telling Tori would hurt. I would explain everything to her, giving her ample warning what Grace was capable of. I could only hope she kept the information to herself, keeping her safe from Grace.
“I’ll give it to you.” I coughed uncomfortably, “I’ll call you tonight.”
I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to tell Tori what happened over the phone. My voice cracked and weakened any time I tried to speak about it. Bile would rise in my throat when I thought about my swollen and busted face.
“I’m holding you to that.” Tori’s lips were pressed together tightly. “I’ll call you around eight, Mom’s having a dinner party with our neighbors.”
“That sounds—fun.” I forced a lopsided grin to my face, ignoring the pinpricks of guilt that settled under my skin.
“You’re more than welcome to join.” Tori chuckled, giving me a playful eyeroll. “It’ll be more eventful than what you’re doing tonight.”
“You’re right about that.” I laughed hollowly.
‘You’re going to hurt people when you leave, Aurora.’ Thalia murmured in my mind, ‘Tori’s one of those people.’
‘People have done nothing but hurt me.’ I grimaced, ‘I deserve more than this—than living in fear with people I hardly know.’
‘You’ll come back to them, Aurora.’ Thalia murmured, her voice growing silent. ‘I know you will.’
I knew exactly who ‘them’ were. Alec and Kade’s faces flashed into mind, the feel of them still lingered on my skin.
Tori and I stopped by one of the banks in town. The two of us cashed our checks. I placed my wad of money deep in my bookbag, eager to add it to what I had saved up. Taking money from Grace had been an offer I hadn’t anticipated, but had no qualms refusing. Taking any form of help from Grace filled me with a sick sense of disgust.
Tori dropped me off at Garrett’s house before heading to her own. She shot me one last stern glance, concern flickering in her eyes. I mustered up my strength and gave her a bright smile. Tori hadn’t asked about our shift at work tomorrow, and I hadn’t mentioned whether I’d be there. Come tomorrow, everyone important would know the news.
- * * * *
Garrett was there the minute I stepped into the house. His crisp suit irritated me, as did his dark slicked back hair. His aura of poise and superiority grated away at my nerves. If only everyone knew the insanity that was hidden beneath his glamorized façade.
“I would like for you to attend dinner with us.” Garrett cleared his throat, his mismatched eyes staring down at me.
For a moment, I wondered if people thought the same thing when looking into my eyes. My eyes were an exact replica of Garrett’s. One eye was a light blue, lighter than the sea or sky. The other eye was a rich brown, hints of honey and gold thrown into the mix. The sight was hypnotizing, both eyes bright and unique in their own way.
“Dinner.” I wasn’t asking a question, yet the word fell from my lips regardless. The last thing I wanted to do was eat dinner with his family. His wife and daughter clearly hated me.
As if reading the contempt in my eyes, Garrett shifted to the other foot. “They will learn to accept you, Aurora but you must make an effort.”
“I need to make an effort?” I scoffed. I hadn’t tried due to the clear distaste his wife and daughter had for me. How could I make an effort when the two of them refused?
“I understand they can be—difficult, but this is as new to them as it is to you.” Garrett frowned, compassion filling his eyes as he spoke of his wife. “After dinner, there is something I would like to show you.”
I frowned, hoping it wouldn’t be another fairytale. Garrett clearly noticed the reluctance on my face but chose not to comment. I had no choice but to indulge him. Come the end of the night, I would be gone.
Garrett told me to come down to the dining room in an hour, and that dinner would be ready soon after. I thundered up to the bedroom, wasting no time as I closed the door behind me.
I grabbed a medium sized duffle bag from the closet and began packing some clothes. I rolled my clothes up tightly, saving as much room as possible. Apart from clothes, a picture or two and all my money, there was nothing left to pack. I wanted to bring toiletries but decided they would take up too much room. I stuffed a couple granola bars and water bottles into the bag. It had been a last-minute decision to raid part of the large kitchen to find some snacks to bring. I wasn’t sure when I’d be eating next.
I had thought of nearly everything when it came to my escape. I would change into something I hardly wore, making it harder to be identified on cameras. I’d keep my hat and hood pulled up, blocking what parts of my face I could manage. The phone Tori had gotten me would have to be left behind, but I could manage without a phone. I emptied out my bank account, planning to use cash for everything I needed.
I didn’t bother changing for dinner. If anyone reported me missing, they would remember the dress I had worn today. I walked down the stairs quickly, wanting to get this entire afternoon done with.
Garrett had already taken his place at the table, Veronica by his side. Katy sat beside her Mom, a permanent sneer on her slender face.
All eyes were on me as I walked into the dining room. My face heated under the stairs. I couldn’t help but feel I had interrupted something. Garrett’s face held anger as he looked at his wife. It was clear they were having a heated conversation about something. I could only guess what that something was—me.
“I’m glad you joined us, Aurora.” Garrett smiled. While the emotion looked genuine, I couldn’t get past the irritated stares coming from Kady and Veronica.
I felt like I was interrupting their family dinner, barging in on something I had no business with.
Garrett controlled the conversation, including me at every chance. He asked about my childhood, classes, and interests. I gave answers where I needed, never once looking into Kady or Veronica’s sharpened eyes. Garrett seemed genuinely interested in my past, something I wasn’t keen on sharing. His eyes filled with guilt as I talked about my Grandma, the woman who had raised me. He could hear the love and gratitude dripping from my voice as I talked about her, along with the contempt I held as I talked about Melissa.
I finished my dinner in a rush, ready to retreat upstairs. My stomach dropped when Garrett stood from the table and motioned for me to follow. Lucy shot me a wide smile as she began gathering the empty plates. I had forgotten Garrett wanted to show me something, only wasting what little time I had.
I followed Garrett silently as he led me out the backdoor. The garden in their backyard was beautiful, overflowing with brightly colored flowers. As we stepped into the yard, I could smell their sweet aroma’s.
“Kady did all of this.” Garrett smiled proudly at the flowers. His entire demeanor seemed to change when he spoke of his family. The thought sent a small wave of pain washing over me, one I pushed to the side and ignored.
“Really?” I scoffed in disbelief. I couldn’t imagine prim and proper Kady getting on her knee’s to garden. The image didn’t sit right in my mind. Wouldn’t she be afraid of chipping a nail?
Garrett did something unexpected, he laughed. His entire face lit up as his chest rumbled.
“She really doesn’t look like the type, does she?” Garrett chuckled, one of his hands smoothing the material of his suit.
“Not at all.” I shook my head, unsure what to make of this entire situation. “Why are we out here? It can’t be to talk about gardening.”
Garrett’s smile fell, a serious expression on his face. I regretted the words as soon as they came from my lips.
“It isn’t.” Garrett shook his head, “I understand I may have chosen the wrong moment to explain your heritage. Instead of telling you, I should have shown you.”
The thought of entertaining this had anger bubbling in my veins. Garrett could see the reluctant frustration forming on my face and jumped into action. Before I could turn my back on him, a sharp snapping sound rang out through the backyard.
My eyes were wide, my mouth gaping as I stared at Garrett. It sounded as though he snapped his own spine in half. His eyes were wide as he looked on at me, a splotch of hair began forming on his neck.
‘Watch him, Aurora.’ Thalia murmured, urging me to keep my eyes on Garrett.
I wasn’t sure I could pull them away if I tried. The entire process was quick, but my body had long ago gone into shock.
I could only stand and stare as my—Garrett turned into a large, silver wolf. The wolf was bigger than any wolf I had ever seen, easily the size of a full-grown bear. The animal’s eyes were just like Garrets, just like my own. One a bright and startling blue, the other a deep golden brown.
Anger, frustration, disbelief, horror, and fear were bouncing through me like an aggressive mosh pit. My dinner sat heavily in my stomach, my blood turning cold at the sight.
Garrett—the wolf stalked forward slowly, sitting on its haunches when it was only a few feet away. I wasn’t sure how long we stood like that for. It could have been hours for all I knew. My eyes were locked on him the entire time, those six conflicting emotions swirling within me. Something else began to form inside of me, acceptance. Some part of me, no matter how small knew Garrett was telling the truth. It was as though I had been missing a piece of myself, and now I was finally whole.
The thought should have filled me with joy, right? Wrong. I was terrified. Terrified of Garrett, terrified of myself.
The truth rattled in my head, understanding formed in my mind. I refused to address those thoughts, knowing what they meant.
Thalia wasn’t just a voice inside my head, she had been there all along.
There was something else that bubbled in my mind, something I had tried to forget.
I had met two wolves’ before, both eerily similar to Garrett. Two wolfs, identical in color and size.