Read Mated To The King’s Gamma by Jessica Hall Chapter 16
When I asked Abbie what she liked in town, she sounded a bit distant, and I could not bring myself to get up and leave her side. She peeled the flesh from her fingertips in a manner that bothered me because she didn’t seem to even realize she was doing it. The entire drive home, she was off in her own little world, trapped in her thoughts while tearing her fingers to pieces.
After we returned home, she went to the laundry room to start the laundry, and I followed her while she loaded the washer and waited until she finished it. As she was focused entirely on the task in front of her, she had no idea that I was behind her. Walking over, I picked up the basket for her.
“Come on, I’ll help,” I tell her, and she seems unsure before sighing. “You don’t have to help me,” she says.
“I want to,” I tell her, walking over to the clothesline. I set the basket down while retrieving the pegs. Due to tomorrow’s trip with the King, I had this afternoon off. In most cases, I would work having nothing better to do. Yet, with Abbie, I rather spend time with her than work.
“What chores have you got to do next?” I ask her as she hangs a pillowcase.
“Staff bathrooms, then mopping and whatever Clarice sends me off to do before I have to go back to the guard’s floor, your floor, and do the afternoon sweep of the rooms and restocking, then re-mop the floors and prep in the kitchen before serving. Then dinner, back to clear the rooms again and dishes plus checking the laundry for extra loads of washing,” she tells me.
“That’s fine, but how long typically does it take you to finish all that?” I ask her, and she glances at me over her shoulder.
“Well, tonight’s roster is full, so 10 pm?” she says, and my brows furrow.
“At what time did you start?”
“4:30,” she shrugs,
“Am?” I ask, and she nods, grabbing more linens to hang onto the clothesline.
“Why so early?” I asked, a little shocked at the crazy hours she was doing for a servant.
“Damian likes me up to clean the gym before the men go in for training, though I didn’t know you trained with them,” she tells me.
“Damian does mornings, and Liam and I alternate the nights. Mostly I do them. Liam has been filling most night hours. His paranoia keeps him awake,” I tell her, handing her some pegs before grabbing a sheet to hang.
“Yeah, he seems a little-“Abbie pauses and I smirk, yet she doesn’t answer.
“Unhinged,” I offer, and she chews her lip and peeks over at me.
“He’s nice, though” she shrugs. If only she had seen him in his element, I don’t think nice would be how she would describe him. Psychotic, dangerous, a maniac maybe, but nice, definitely not.
“I’ll speak with Damian. Does he know how late you work?” She shrugs before shaking her head.
“I don’t think so. But, I don’t mind, it’s not every night I work that late, and I don’t want to get into any trouble,” she says.
“Why would you get in trouble?” I ask her.
“For not working enough” she states, pegging the last lot of linens on the line before retrieving her basket.
“How about I help you finish your chores, and when we are done, we can go for a run? I will clear it with Clarice and Damian.” I tell her, and she looks toward the forest. Her eyes light up excitedly.
“Really?” she asked, peering up at me before looking back at the castle.
“But It will be late by the time I finish,” she says, looking at the forest longingly.
“I will get someone to cover your afternoon shift. Come on, show me where to first,” I tell her, nudging her toward the laundry doors.
“Are you sure? It’s rather boring. I’m sure you can find better ways to spend your time,” she says, setting the basket on top of one of the washers and checking the others that were still running.
“Hmm, I would rather hang out with you,” I tell her, and her face heats.
“Why?” she chuckles, grabbing some cleaning supplies. “You’re prettier than Liam,” I snicker, and she raises an eyebrow at my words.
“Where is Liam anyway? Usually, both of you are together,” she says, and I follow her upstairs to help her do her chores.
“Probably harassing someone while working, or maybe with Dustin,” I tell her with a shrug, and she nods.
I follow her around, helping her complete her chores before I tell her to grab a bag so she can put her clothes in it. While she does that, I went to clear it with Clarice.
“You like her, don’t you?” Clarice laughs, and I roll my eyes before sighing.
“Maybe,” I tell her, and she shakes her head with a soft laugh.
“Go on then; I will get Ester to cover for her. Have fun,” Clarice says, shooing me away. I let the guards on duty know we would be out in the forest by the river before notifying Damian about my whereabouts before going upstairs and shifting. I pack a change of clothes before knocking on Abbie’s bedroom door.
“What did Clarice say?” she asks, nibbling on her lip as she peered out the door.
“She got someone to cover for you, so we are free to leave,” I tell her, stepping into her room and grabbing the small bag sitting on the bed before grabbing her hand and tugging her downstairs. We step into the woods, and she wanders off toward a tree. I wait for her to shift when she comes over to me with her uniform in her mouth. I crouch down, stuffing it in the bag before running my claws through her fur. She purrs, zipping in and out of my legs when I stand.
I laugh, and she jumps up, pressing her paws on my stomach and rub her face, pressing my wolfish head against hers. “I’ll race you,” I tell her, licking her face before taking off before she realizes I just l****d her. I hear her growl before hearing her dart after me.