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  • Home > Samantha Young > The Tale of Lunarmorte > Moon Spell (Page 16)     
  • Moon Spell(The Tale of Lunarmorte #1)(16) by Samantha Young
  • “It’s not their fault. I asked.”

    “Well stop asking,” his voice was like ice.

    She flinched as if he had struck her. Why was he was being such a jerk when he had been so kind and friendly all week? Now he had all of them acting like they’d been caught with their hand in the cookie jar. They hadn’t done anything wrong, and neither had she for asking. “I have a right to know,” she heard the steel in her own voice, watched her friends react in surprise to the strength she showed him, and it encouraged her to continue, “I withheld from asking Irini because it seemed to upset her, but I have a right to ask now.”

    “No, you don’t,” Lucien countered, stepping towards her. “I will not have the war brought up. We are peaceful, and the pack does not need those kinds of memories being dredged up at the moment.”

    Caia didn’t back up. Instead she took a step towards him, telling him physically that he didn’t frighten her. “The Hunter was part of the war. He took my parents from me before I had the chance to get to know them. I deserve to know the whys and the hows.”

    “I told you all there was to know a week ago, so drop it.”

    She glared at him for a moment, her green eyes clashing into his silver ones with heat and anger. She was flushed with the warmth of her annoyance and could feel Lucien’s anger melding into the air around them with hers until it was hard to breathe in the stifling atmosphere. Slowly realizing that Jae and Sebastian were shifting uncomfortably, she backed down, forcing on a tranquil expression. She felt like she had the day she’d encountered Yvana in the kitchen. Just when she was beginning to feel a part of these people...

    Lucien must have read something in her eyes because he sighed deeply, running his hand through his hair as if frustrated. “Jae, Seb... give Caia and me a moment please.”

    They couldn’t have scrambled out of the room fast enough.

    “Caia, I’m sorry,” Lucien said softly, closing the door behind them.

    She nodded, a little unsure of him now. “You don’t have to treat me like a child, you know.”

    He nodded, lowering himself onto the bed across from her. His eyes were kind, the ice melted. “I know. I am sorry.”

    “So, what?” she grimaced. “I’m not allowed to talk about the past? I have questions.”

    “I get that. I do. But...” He shook his head. “I don’t know how to say this without hurting your feelings.”

    “Why don’t you just rip it off like a band aid.”

    His mouth quirked up at the corner, his eyes holding hers fast. “OK. I don’t want you mentioning the past, or the war, or The Hunter, because I want my pack to accept you. Reminding them of all of that will just make things harder on you. No one else.”

    “I thought no one blamed me,” her voice was a little unsteady. Had everyone been faking it? Even Jaeden and Sebastian?

    “They don’t. But they’ve also gotten past what happened. Refreshing their memories isn’t going to do anyone any good.”

    She guessed she understood - but she wasn’t giving up. She’d give them all time to get used to her, and when enough time had passed, she would get the answers she wanted. “OK,” she exhaled.

    Lucien smiled widely, breathing a huge sigh of relief. “OK.” He slapped his knees and stood up. “Still friends?” he asked, smiling softly at her, his eyes locking hers to his like a magnet.

    Caia felt her heart thump a little irregularly. “Still friends,” it was a miracle her voice came out as strong as it did.

    “Good. I’ll send them back in.”

    “Wow,” Jaeden whispered when she re-entered the room with Sebastian. They were both smiling like small children. “I’ve never seen anyone stand up to him like that, except for the Elders.”

    Sebastian chuckled. “It was pretty awesome.”

    Caia laughed at them. “It was nothing. Really, we’re fine.”

    Jaeden laughed. “He got his way though, right?”

    “For now.”

    By eight o’ clock the next evening the pack had gathered outside at the back of Lucien’s home. Caia walked towards them all, Sebastian on her right and Jaeden on her left. Having them beside her was comforting, but it didn’t diminish the flurry of butterflies in her stomach. She took in Lucien, standing tall, straight, and powerful in the middle of his pack, angling his head to listen to whatever Ryder was telling him. Jaeden stopped beside Magnus - deliberately it seemed – and the Elder smiled softly at Caia before coaxing her into his side.

    “You’ll be OK,” he whispered, stroking her cheek. “Your eyes give away your panic. Don’t let them see.”

    Caia nodded gratefully, taking a deep breath. She squeezed Magnus’ hand, reassuring him she was alright.

    “You OK?” Sebastian asked as she returned to them.

    “I’m fine. I promise.”

    She turned back to the rest of the pack who were gathered in little groups. Irini was cuddling up to Aidan. Ella and Magnus were talking quietly with one another. Dimitri and Julia stood with Christian, but Lucia was nowhere to be seen. She’d obviously gotten babysitting duty this time round. Her eyes swept the circle catching sight of Alexa, Malek, and Finlay standing with their family; Dana and Daniel with theirs.

    “That’s my mom and dad,” Sebastian whispered in her ear, pointing to a young looking family. “And my kid sister, Seana. She’s a pain in my ass.”

    Caia smiled, detecting the affection in his voice. He waved at his parents, who smiled back and nodded politely to Caia. She returned the gesture, and smiled at Sebastian after he nudged her teasingly with his shoulder. She glanced around them all again, and then realized there was someone missing.

    “Where’s Yvana?” she whispered to Jaeden.

    Jaeden screwed up her face. “Everyone heard about how she reacted to you. Lucien banned her from this run. As punishment.”

    Caia’s eyes widened. She hadn’t expected that. She glanced shyly over at Lucien only to catch him watching her intently. His silver eyes flashed concern at her, and she nodded her head gently to let him know she was OK. Goddess they were a protective lot; it was wearying, but nice. He nodded back and turned to Ryder to murmur something.

    They stood for a few more minutes, talking among themselves, until a hush fell over the pack as they all turned to gaze up at the quarter moon.

    “Tonight is a special run,” Lucien’s voice rumbled through the pack, drawing all eyes to him. “Tonight we run in honor of the safe return of my sister, Irini, and our brother, Rafael’s, daughter, Caia.”

    Caia felt her face warm as a hum washed around them. She waited for him to say more, her eyes drinking in his own silver pools as they scanned the pack. He was born to be a leader; his magnetism alluring, his strength and assuredness comforting. She could feel it drifting over the other pack members, wrapping around them. They were happy with their young leader that was for sure.

    “Artemis, go with us,” Lucien rumbled.

    “Artemis, go with us,” the pack repeated, and then, just as she had felt herself easing in to the moment, they began to undress. She turned away as Jaeden and Sebastian stripped without any hesitancy; gaped as Irini and Aidan undressed each other, grinning wildly as they touched one another. It wasn’t just them, Caia realized. Couples watched each other intensely as they disrobed, regardless of the other lykans. Everyone was just so at home in their own skin. She felt a pinch on her arm and turned (keeping her eyes at face level) to find Jaeden pointedly raising her eyebrows at her. Sighing, her fingers trembling, Caia began to undress. No one’s looking, no one cares, pretend this is just an ordinary run, and it’s just you. You do this all the time.

    The mantra may have worked but as her last piece of clothing dropped to the slightly damp earth and goosebumps erupted across her soft skin under the cool night breeze, she made the mistake of looking up and found Lucien gazing at her. Not just gazing either. His eyes were running the entire length of her body, and when he finally realized she was looking back, he didn’t smile as if he was teasing her. His jaw was clenched, his eyes darkened to a coal grey. Her breath caught, and she felt glued to the spot. Finally, Caia mentally slapped herself, as she realized she was staring at him also … really staring … at everything, and enjoying the view. She tried not to blush, looking around to make sure no one had noticed. And of course Alexa had. She was glaring at Caia like she wanted to rip her throat out. Her eyes narrowed, and Caia could almost hear her threatening to tell Lucien about their little incident earlier on in the week. She couldn’t have that. She was still trying to figure things out herself.

    As the moaning and growling of the pack drifted into her awareness she shoved aside the animosity pouring out of Alexa. The pack were all changing around her. A tingle of anticipation rushed through Caia at the sound of their cracking bones as they contorted and reshaped. She closed her eyes and tried to clear her mind, feeling the breeze, hearing the whispering of the trees, bathing in the glow of Artemis.

    And then it was there, the pelt pushing through, the change burning like growing pains. Before she knew it she was thudding to the ground on all four paws, her sharp wolf eyes taking in the sight of the pack, now seeming pretty huge in its wolf form. It was an impressive sight, so much so, she took an involuntary pad backwards, watching them all shift and nudge each other. And then a huge, black, and superbly powerful lykan padded into the center of the wolves, his large silver eyes sweeping them all.

    Lucien.

    She followed the others’ example as they bent their hindquarters and lowered their head to the ground, bowing to their Alpha before the run began. She had very little time to enjoy the awe of the moment. To bow with them all to Lucien tugged at her more than anything had thus far. She felt part of the pack, part of their history.

    She felt extraordinary.

    And just like that the pack took off, running so fast earth and dirt kicked up in the aftermath. With one last look, Caia burst out after them, extremely conscious of how aware they were of her movements. Knowing this, she couldn’t quite enjoy the run as she would have done, too busy watching them as they played with one another, never realizing the comradeship and intimacy that was possible even in lykan form. She realized relationships could actually be built out here. Like this. Unused to the idea, slightly uncomfortable with it even, Caia raced past them all, ignoring them and enjoying the rush of the wind on her pelt. She was fast, possibly faster than the rest. She laughed a little, enjoying the thought. But her laughter was cut short by the thunder of someone chasing her, and before she had time to react a weight crashed into her side, sending her paws out from her under her. The impact didn’t hurt, it barely winded her, but she turned to growl at her attacker in instinct, only to find her nose inches from silver eyes. Caia stumbled, taken aback that Lucien had come after her. She would have thought he would have been too busy overseeing the pack. She watched in amazement as he began to almost dance around her, butting her playfully with the top of his head. He wanted to play with her as she had seen the others play! Caia sensed his amusement at her uncertainty and couldn’t help but smile inwardly when he butted her again and then rolled away from her. He made a choking sound like laughter, and slowly Caia began to relax. Eventually, without thinking, she was moving forward with great speed and grace, dancing around him, disconcerting him, and in doing so finding the opportunity to butt him back forcefully. Again, he made the choking sound as he got back to his feet, bowing his head appreciatively at her efforts. Caia had no idea how it happened but she found herself rolling and tussling in the dirt with this huge lykan, knocking him back just as hard as he did her, and enjoying this moment of freedom with one of her own.

  • Romance | Fantasy | Vampire