Hopefully this teaser helps to explain certain questions posed on LitE regarding why Draven has a problem with accepting Erika as his mate. It only goes to show that not everything in life is as easy as wanting and having eh.
“I sense that you resent the fact that I’m your Alpha,” said Eian calmly.
“I did not choose for this to happen Eian. I’m not the type to embrace change very well and this definitely constitutes as a major change in allegiance. Heck, I’m still trying to adjust to not calling you Your Excellency or Your Grace in every sentence.”
“So you resent it.” It wasn’t really a question but a statement of his observation. Draven merely nodded to affirm Eian’s words and heard his Alpha give out a long sigh. “Perhaps we should take a walk,” he suggested, getting on his feet.
The two men walked side by side down the path towards the forest, keeping silent. It was only when they reached a small river that Eian spoke.
“I remembered finding Fiona here; passed out after feeding on a man. It broke my heart but I knew from that moment that I would never turn her against her will ever. So while she’s a pack member and also an Alpha female, she is not a Werewolf and never will be.”
Draven listened to Eian, unsure of what to say so he merely nodded as they continued walking.
“It is an option for you,” said Eian. “I had thought it was odd that you could read her when you couldn’t read the other Weres but at that time, I was more concerned over Fiona so I dismissed it. On hindsight, I probably shouldn’t.”
Draven stopped in his track and turned to face Eian. “You knew?”
“I suspected it. Just like that time you refused to face me when you came by to send Fiona to work. It was not a nobleman’s conduct.”
“I apologize,” said Draven quickly, looking down at his feet. “I knew you would scent her on me if I was too close and I didn’t want her to get in trouble… yet.”
“Mmm,” replied Eian, obviously not convinced. “Then why did you accept her as your mate? You know you shouldn’t have.”
With a long sigh, Draven looked up at Eian. “I wanted to kill her right there and then. I swear I would have but I couldn’t bear to. Then I gave her the option of removing her memories of me so she could move on with her life and find another mate…”
“Let me guess… she’d rather be killed?”
Draven gave a resigned nod. “If a woman would die for you to prove that she’s your mate what would you have done?”
A weak smile curled at the corners of Eian’s lips. “I see.”
Draven didn’t reply him but looked away.
Empathy filled his heart as he observed the Vampire. He knew what Draven was feeling at the moment. Hadn’t Fiona risked her life to prove to him that they were mates and that he should bite her?
“You should have just removed her memories Draven, instead of facing this agony. But now you cannot reverse it because you’ve answered her mating call.”
“I haven’t answered a damn thing Eian. We only had sex once and that hardly counts as mating. I don’t even know what mating constitutes or how to go about doing it. As far as I’m concerned we have not mated. Period.”
“You accepted to mate with her first and then kill her. Am I right? That’s why you and I now share this bond.”
Draven looked upwards and cursed. “Father will kill me.”
“He might not kill you… but Aramis is the kind of man who might… disown you. Ah… yes he will. So what do you want to do about it now?”
Draven was stumped. Would his father really do that? Disown his eldest son whom he had spent centuries grooming? But Fiona…
“She is not in line for the title, you know that. Besides, she’s under my guardianship and from an economic perspective, your family stands to gain from her marriage to my title.”
But being just a member of the pack… a commoner was not Father’s choice for him, Draven knew. Eian was right about Fiona… for not only did she inherit the Duchess title but also the position of Alpha female within the pack. He, on the other hand will lose everything…
Being subordinated to Eian was not a new concept, seeing that he is higher on the peerage than the Culzeans. However being just another pack member; living here in this compound… seemed like a far cry from his pampered existence. Living simply was not a problem but leaving his responsibilities to the next in line was unthinkable. Alaron is still a baby and worth a lot of trouble. As the elder, it would be unfair to suddenly dump everything on the younger Vampire’s shoulder.
Draven knew he had to make a decision soon.
“Has there ever been an incident where a mate refused his or her mate?”
Eian nodded, knowing the direction the Vampire was heading towards. “It didn’t turn out well, I must say.”
“Tell me Eian…” he replied sadly.
“It’s easier when a mate dies because the one who survives can still live off the pleasant memories; feeding off the loss. But to be separated while both are still alive is like putting two magnets at opposite ends of a table- they keep attracting one another, even unconsciously.”
“Pardon me asking but why would there be a problem between Werewolf mates? Have there been Vampire-Wolves mating before?”
“No. After the Count Chervenkov incident, our packs kept away from Vampire clans as much as possible, for fear of having a pack ravished by another wolf-blood loving Vampire. So you can consider my marriage the first of its kind. As for your first question, the Werewolf tried to distance himself from his true mate because she was already married to another at that time.”
“You mean you can have a family with a non-mate?”
Eian shrugged. “Sure, why not? They just don’t share the special bond that mates have with each other; the ability to communicate in their heads, the desire to bear as many children as possible… all that.” Eian paused as though not knowing whether to continue or not. If he encouraged this man to deny his mate then it would be dreadful for the both of them but if he allowed their union, then Draven might have an estrange relationship with his father… for eternity; not to mention what Aramis might do to Amber. Eian didn’t want to think about that.
“Sometimes… it can take a Were decades or even centuries to find their mate and some just do not have the time or patience to wait around any longer.” Eian didn’t know why he was telling the Vampire this. Was he trying to encourage or discourage him from joining the pack?
“I had hoped to find my life mate with a human… not a Werewolf.” When Eian gave him a curious look, Draven smiled a little. “Full grown Vampires tend to be really arrogant and difficult to yield, especially if they are older than you. It’s worst for the females I think because they’ve lived so long as an independent individual that the thought of you asking them to do housework or anything can spark off a quarrel.”
Eian couldn’t hold back his laugh. “That’s so sexist Draven! Besides, Amber is not that easy to handle. She’s stubborn and is also intelligent, independent and a tad arrogant at times. Besides, you have domestic helpers to do the housework right?”
“I don’t see any in your house,” Draven pointed out. “And anyway, Amber is still young. Sixty… is that even legal to get married?”
Eian rolled his eyes and laughed again. “My dear brother-in-law, the legal age to get married is 18, I believe.”
Draven smiled a little at Eian’s response. Even if they were really mates, he couldn’t claim her… so he knew what his next course of action was.
“I have to stay away from her Eian… It is not just for my sake but for hers. You know how much influence Father has in the Council right? If he says she’s a threat, they will hunt her down,” said Draven with a hitch in his voice. Then turning to Eian, he gave him a desperate look. “I will return back to the castle and alternate between there and our other accommodations. I hope… you’ll help stop her from following me. She will listen to you.”
“As an Alpha, it hurts me greatly to forcefully separate mates from each other, especially when I know Amber will be devastated by it. But as your brother-in-law… and your father’s friend, I understand the situation, more than you think I do…” Eian stared at the pleading eyes of the Vampire and nodded sadly. “Alright, I’ll try my best. Then you should leave now Draven…”
Draven bowed his head slightly in gratitude and also respect for this man who was not just a superior but also a part of his family… and possibly a friend.
That night, Eian lay in his bed thinking about the conversation he had with Draven earlier and wondered how he was going to break the news to Amber.
“Sweetheart… you’re still awake,” whispered Fiona, moving closer to feel her husband’s warmth. “Did I not tire you enough?”
Eian looked to his left and curled an arm around Fiona. “I would never grow tired of you,” he whispered back, kissing the top of her head. He knew that was not what she meant but he didn’t want her getting aroused again. They just had two rounds of incredible sex and while they were both limber and satiated, he knew that just a small thought could trigger their lust again.
Apparently she thought so too for she didn’t bother to correct him and instead tried to talk him out of his worries. He had resisted telling her about the problem; unsure if it would upset her too much. She still had the whole bookshop business to take care off and that would be enough stress for her.
“I’ll be fine. The whole building a new shop experience excites me more than worries me… so you shouldn’t worry that I’ll be stressed out or anything. It’s my first real adult responsibility and I’m more than ready for it. I promise I won’t let you down,” she said, leaning her head on his chest.
Eian gave a sigh. It seems that he was the one who was going to let her down.
“I know you’ll be fine my love… I trust you,” he reassured her, caressing her hair gently. “Sleep…” he whispered and closed his eyes, pretending to sleep. However his mind was still working, thinking about the dreaded conversation he was going to have with Amber in the morning.
Amber is a prized Beta because of her medical knowledge and experience and he was afraid that denying her mate could potentially turn her into a rogue. He hadn’t indulged Draven in this little piece of information nor tell him what actually happened to the female Were who refused her true mate out of loyalty to her then spouse. It was a sad episode in his life as an Alpha; something he’d rather not remember too.
With a sigh, Eian brought Fiona closer to him. Sometimes when you’ve waited so long to find the right one… how could you let her go?
I'm trying to also work on a possible cover for this series. It's just for fun but I like seeing my ideas in pictures and stuff like that. Of course it'd be great if someone were to send one to me. lol. Okay I'll work on it and see how it goes.