“So sure?” He smiled.
“Something tells me that we will never be the only ones who feel that way. We will be surrounded by pack brothers and sisters and children who will be courageous in the face of evil.”
“If my Luna says, then so shall it be.”
The room was quiet as Alina closed the book that told the story of the beginning of Vasile’s reign. She looked at the faces around the room. Beautiful young women whom she considered her own daughters. Just as if she had born every one of them, they belonged to her. She had wanted to share her story, wanted them to see that she and Vasile had not always been so in control and united. And she wanted them to know that regardless of how their journey with their mate began, and not matter how impossible things seemed to appear, they would survive, grow, and learn together.
“Why did you not share this with us sooner?” Jacque finally broke the silence. Alina imagined she was no doubt thinking about how similar their situations had been―she attacked by Lucas and herself attacked by Serghei, both marked by males that never should have touched them.
“The time simply was not right,” she told her gently, hoping she understood that Alina had not meant to hurt her by not sharing her own experience. “I wanted you each to be able to fully understand the dynamics of the relationship between a male Canis lupis and his true mate, and I did not think that possible until you each had your own mates.”
“I agree with you,” Jen spoke up. “I don’t think there is any way to understand something so deep without having experienced it.”
Alina nodded and smiled. “You have definitely dealt with your fair share of Alpha male attitude.”
They all laughed at her understatement.
Jen sat with her legs swinging off the edge of the couch and her back propped against the arm. She let out a wistful sigh. “Well, all I can say is that I hope when Decebel grows up he is like Vasile.”
This time the laughter had Sally and Jacque tearing up and Alina shaking her head at the young Alpha female.
“Alina,” Sally said after the laughter had died down. “What happened to all those pack members? I mean I know there are still some here that have been with you all since then, but Ion , and Nicu, what about them?”
Alina’s lips tightened briefly as she remembered the sorrow of some of those stories. “Ion found his true mate, and she was in another pack. He chose to go with her. Nicu the same. Alin perished in a dominance fight not too long after Vasile returned as Alpha. Sisily met her true mate in the Western Romania pack, but several years after they bonded he was attacked by a bear. He didn’t make it, so naturally neither did Sisily. Her parents requested to join a different pack because they felt such shame over Serghei. We tried to get them to stay but they refused. As far as I know, they are still alive, but they do not leave their pack territory. Many others share similar stories.”
“I’m sorry,” Sally told her. “I know that must have been very difficult , to lose those who had helped restore your pack.”
“Time heals much, gypsy, you know that,” Alina smiled.
“Well as usual, Alina,” Jacque said as she sat up to stretch after having been in one position so long. “You were right. You and Vasile have had many, many adventures.”
“And you’ve saved the world, like twice or something,” Jen tossed out. “You are totally due a vaca.”
“Well, daughters of mine, with a new pup in the pack and one on the way, I have a feeling that there will not be time for a vaca, as you call it. The Great Luna has plans for her wolves now that we have finally begun to work together. And anytime there is significant change in the packs, then we should be on or most vigilant guard. Something tells me that the pups born to this pack represent a very significant change.
“I really don’t like it when you say crap like that, because it usually means something bad, or ugly, or evil beyond all imagining is going to show up on our door step,” Jen huffed and threw her head back dramatically.
“So for clarification purposes,” Jacque said as she pursed her lips. “What I hear you saying is that there is no rest for the furry, correct?”
Alina nodded as she chuckled. “Very correct.”
“We should totally put that on a t-shirt.” Sally grinned.
“I concur, gypsy lady,” Jen said.
“I’ll only wear it if we get the males each their very own― in pink,” Jen added.
“You are simply diabolical Thelma,.” Jacque held out her fist to her.
“Okay so, we’ve heard the love story , and we still have a night of girl time before we have to go back to being responsible females.” Jen stood walking towards the kitchen with her empty hot chocolate mug.
“What do you have in mind?” Alina asked and, based on the groans around her, she knew it was one of those questions that should never be posed to Jen.
The wide grin that spread across Jen’s face and the brief glow of her eyes was enough to know that it was not going to bode well for them. “I am so glad you asked.”