Read Mated to the Alpha Twins [by Jane Doe] Chapter 95
“Welcome, everyone.” Marcus called out to the room, turning hushed whispers into silence. His suit was navy blue this time, which made his eyes seem brighter and more vibrant. This man was what most strived to be; attractive, charismatic, wealthy and powerful.
That’s what’s dangerous about the soul. No matter how beautiful you are on the outside, no matter what favors your appearance gains you, the soul can rot from the inside out.
Many of the murmurs were regarding Desmond Deville’s sudden absence. I listened to each and every one, forcing myself to remain calm.
“As I’m sure you all have noticed, we are missing a certain table member.” Marcus lifted an eyebrow towards the room full of witnesses. He turned to face where I stood in particular, and though his eyes were not on me, I couldn’t help but feel a bit paranoid. “Desmond Deville was called back to his pack sometime early this morning. There is nothing to worry about, simply a pack misunderstanding turned into a larger inconvenience. While he regrets leaving ahead of schedule, he does hope to return before the conclusion of our final meeting.”
I tried not to let out my exhale of pure relief too loudly. As though my body couldn’t help itself, my eyes darted over to where Jaspar Fox sat. He wore a thick leather jacket this time, and his raven hair was brushed back from his head. I noticed the faint white line of a scar running across his forehead, and wondered how I hadn’t noticed it before. I instinctively stiffened when my eyes traveled down, and I realized he was staring back at me. His pale eyes were unnervingly calm as they b****d into my own. And very slowly, so gentle that no one would notice, Jaspar Fox nodded his head at me.
It was an expression that said, “I’ve held up my end, can you hold up yours?”
“With that being said; Nico Deville, eldest son of Desmond Deville, will take his father’s place for the time being. He will arrive within the hour, and will be fully debriefed on everything discussed thus far. On our final day, should Desmond Deville be unable to return, his son will make an educated vote that represents his father’s authority and expectations.”
There was some whispering that echoed through the crowd, and I turned my ears to each and every word that was uttered. I paused with baited breath, expecting someone to utter those words. There was nothing, no suspicion of foul play. I counted to ten and let out a shallow breath, then intertwined my fingers with Kade. The last helped to relax me the most.
“Now that all announcements have ceased, let us begin today’s meeting.” Brayton Cliff nodded towards the crowd, smoothing down the front of his platinum grey suit. He looked impeccable and professional, but there was a certain rigidity to his body that made him seem uptight and a bit unapproachable.
“Sebastian, you were rather quiet our last meeting. Would you care to begin this one?” Brayton asked thoughtfully, casting a cool glance towards the lowest High Table member.
Sebastian Sable had the most to lose out of any of these men. If I joined the High Table, Sebastian would be tossed to the side. He would be nothing more than your average Alpha. It was clear from his poisonous emotions that he was not joining my team in the foreseeable future.
“Yes, well, I needed more information before I jumped to any conclusions.” Sebastian smiled at the room, but it was a completely empty gesture. It was like watching something alien mimic human expression and emotion, hollow and transparent. “While it is my seat on the line, I wish to be as unbiased as reasonably possible. I do believe it would be best if Marcus here continued. In the meantime, I’d like to think over what we’ve discussed so far.”
The silent snort I let out under my breath was completely involuntary. I stiffened immediately after, praying no one had heard. Conversation continued to flow evenly, and no one seemed to bat an eyelash at my silent exclamation.
“Ouch.” I hissed, my narrowed eyes darting up to Kade’s face.
I rubbed at the spot on my arm Kade had pinched and eyed him angrily. He glanced towards Sebastian and back to me before smirking.
“Oh.” I mouthed sheepishly, “Sorry.”
“Per our last meeting, we confirmed Ms. Aurora’s abilities and discussed what potential she might have in our world.” Brayton continued without missing a beat, “While she seems to have control over her abilities, it’s within the interest of our kind that we monitor this progress and ensure she matures into her powers with full control.”
“That being said, she could be of use to our packs, ensuring our kind’s success and all of that.” Jaspar Fox chose his time to speak up, tossing me a lazy smile with eyes that had far too much to hide.
“How right you are.” Marcus agreed, a friendly smile on his face. This time his eyes turned to me, cold and calculating beneath his warm exterior. Kade’s emotions turned brittle, but he managed to keep his rage contained while we stood in silence, unable to do anything but watch. “Even though you know little about our world, you have an opportunity to make a difference. So rarely does something like this happen, and it is our hope that you might see this as an opportunity. While we each may have different terms and requests, you are in no way forced to choose. It is your right to accept or deny as you see fit.”
I straightened my spine and approached the center of the room as instructed. Only I could hear the pattering of my heart, which mirrored the whispers being flung from all sides of the room.
“I make no promises, but I will listen to your offers.” I chose my words carefully, forcing myself to stare Marcus Novak in the eyes the entire time.
He was not a stupid man. He knew I wasn’t fooled, and I would no longer pretend to be. Any deal made with him would surely end in my d***h–or, enslavement. How many other white wolves walked into his land willingly, completely ignorant of what actually lie ahead?
“Though we communicate and work as one, we are five individual packs with land and customs of our own. As such, any agreements will reflect our singular pack.” Marcus continued with a thin smile.
His words were surprising to some, and murmurs erupted throughout the room. I only caught bits and pieces, but the words I heard were troubling at best. Words like; takeover, always share, selfish, and plotting, came from the mouths of some witnesses. Others denied it, claimed Marcus was doing what was best, and that he had more experience than any other High Table member. Many of these people trusted him, and for the life of me, I couldn’t understand why.
A flicker of surprise went through Jaspar, Brayton Cliff went still, and Sebastian practically ignited with rage. What Marcus had done was definitely unusual.
“As head of the High Table, I believe I’ll begin with what my pack might offer you in return for your time and service.” Marcus gave little time in between for argument, and from the emotions picking at me, most were too terrified to interrupt him. I caught wind of the golden-haired Alpha and Luna again. They weren’t afraid of Marcus–and seemed to detest him more than anyone else. “First, you would have my entire collection of knowledge at your disposal, including anything regarding white wolves. You also have access to my outside sources, should you need more information. It is known that I have a few white wolves living on my territory. I would be willing to transfer any that wish to move, over to your domain. Most in my pack provide protection from rogues. Lastly, you must reside in my pack four months out of the year. There you will train and aid me in High Table matters. These months are up to your discretion, and your mates may attend as well. Should you accept my terms, I would welcome you into your seat as head of the High Table, and provide as your mentor.”
His terms were surprising, to say the least. I had almost missed his last requirement, the one that promised my doom. Four months out of the year I’d remain in his pack–like I was an object being passed around. The crowed murmured and cooed at his generosity, while I wanted to snarl and shout. It wasn’t a gift; it was a d***h sentence.
What was even more surprising–Marcus Novak was cutting his long-time accomplice, Sebastian Sable, out of the picture. He was essentially handing me my seat on a silver platter, and kicking Sebastian off to the side.
Sebastian would be lowered in status after this, made nothing more than a basic Alpha. I was also fairly positive he’d lose whatever agreement he had going on with Marcus Novak. What a way to end a partnership.
My legs buckled with the rage that blasted through him. Even from where I stood, I could hear the snap and creak of the wooden dais breaking under his fingers. His eyes conveyed h**l-fire within their depths, and it was all directed on me.
I was no fool to what was going on. Clearly, Marcus Novak was the wealthiest of the Alpha’s. He had the most assets and I’m assuming the whitest wolves. The other High Table members only agreed to using me so long as it benefited them all. Marcus had flipped the script on them.
“Well, though it’s pointless, I suppose I’ll go next.” Brayton cleared his throat and shifted in his seat. I could feel his discomfort with the situation, along with an underlying tone of worry. He met my eyes and I could feel a shift in his emotions. Curiosity and something else, possibly hope? “While my collection of knowledge is smaller than Marcus’s, I assure you, you’ll find things even he does not have within my walls. I offer you my knowledge and my pack should you ever need my aid. Rather than force you to my own land, I would pay you monthly visits to ensure your development and magical abilities remained stable.”
There were a few murmurs as many caught the snide comment Brayton placed carefully within his words. In truth, his proposal wasn’t a horrible one. It was essentially an alliance, one with a bit more stipulations.
I smoothed any emotion from my face, but nodded at Brayton Cliff. Next was Jaspar, who had reclined in his chair. He was currently cleaning underneath his nails with a serrated blade, paying no mind to the conversation around him.
Brayton nudged Jaspar, catching his attention. The knife was away in a flash, faster than my eyes could perceive.
“Ah, my turn, is it?” He grunted, stretching out in his seat. He brushed back the inky hair that fell across his forehead and gave me a long look. When he spoke, it was slow and drawn out. I wanted to laugh for a moment. The man had the audacity to be bored, during a meeting that discussed my right to live. “I got no use for your abilities, kid. I can give you information, training, whatever you need. Wouldn’t mind a powerful pack having my back–and vice versa. You want an alliance? We can talk. I don’t need a guard dog.”
Some part of me desperately hoped Jaspar wasn’t a s****y person, because he was the type of man I could see myself getting along with. He was strange for sure, but honest. This place was built on lies, and having the truth was refreshing. His offer on the other hand, it had been the best one yet. It wasn’t an offer of servitude, but one of an alliance.
The only one who was silent was Sebastian Sable. It was horribly unfair how this entire thing was set up, and if he weren’t a psychopath, I would’ve felt sorry for the man.
There was no point in Sebastian offering me anything. I would accept one of the others and kick him from his place at the High Table, that was an inevitability.
“Three very generous offers. All of which could benefit our species.” Marcus finally spoke, cutting a sharp look towards Jaspar. “Should you choose one, contracts will be drawn afterwards. As well, these offers are on a trail period basis. We still do not know the full extent of your abilities, though we certainly know what you could be capable of should your powers hit full maturity. During this trial period, you will be closely monitored. Whomever you choose will ensure you have complete control at all times.”
It was a prison sentence, basically. No matter what I chose, Marcus Novak would get what he wanted. I could easily choose Jaspar and decline Brayton and Marcus, but he would retaliate. No way in h**l would Marcus let me slip through his greedy fingers.
“What will happen should she decline all three offers? What will happen then to ensure she maintain control over her abilities?” Sebastian Sable asked, his voice oily and beady eyes narrowed. He stood from his seat and spoke directly to the crowd. “You all are not thinking of the future. Yes, she might learn to control her abilities, but it is her who is able to use them. How can we dictate what she does with these gifts? What would happen if one morning, she wished to eradicate the High Table? It would take an army to stop her. What ensures us that this day will never come? I am thinking of our future, of your grandchildren’s children. What is truly best for us? This ability might’ve been celebrated in a time of war. We are at peace, right now. Perhaps, we do not need her abilities at this given point in our history. Even worse, she is causing chaos that has long been purged from the High Table. I will not fall for the allure of power, no matter how the package might look. This she wolf wields d***h, and she is here to bring war.”