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|Just One Drop(Grey Wolves #3) by Quinn Loftis|
"I agree that he should protect her," Dragomir spoke up. "The question is, did he go too far?"
"I don't think her unmated status should decide the amount of defense she is allowed," Alina addressed Dragomir. "If any mated female had been grabbed so hard that bruises and claw marks became visible, her mate would kill the offender. There would be no fight to submission as Decebel did. The wolf who would touch a mate in that way would be signing his death warrant. Are our unmated females worth so much less?"
"No. No, Alina. I didn't mean that at all," Dragomir backtracked, clearly uncomfortable with the picture Alina painted.
"If they are not worth less then Decebel was lenient. Do you agree?"
Vasile tried to hide the smile that threatened to spread across his face as he watched his mate bring the Alphas to heel.
"I have to agree with you, Alina," Victor stepped in. "I don't think any disciplinary action is necessary. It's been dealt with. Decebel put the pup in his place, and I'm sure the young wolf has learned his lesson about what happens when one touches a female inappropriately."
Vasile stood, pulling Alina up along with him. "I appreciate you all discussing the matter. If we are done..." He left the sentence hanging.
"Vasile, you are still planning on joining us for the dinner for the Alphas, yes?" Thad asked as Vasile and Alina headed for the door.
"Yes, thank you. We will be in attendance."
"So how are you liking pack life, Jacque?" Tanya asked as she, Jacque, Dillon, and Fane sat together in one of the many small sitting rooms in the mansion.
Fane had his hand across the back of the couch he and Jacque were sitting on. He worked his hand underneath her hair and his fingers traced the markings on her skin – he knew them by memory. Jacque tried not to shiver at her mate's touch.
"Could you please behave?" Jacque asked, using their bond.
"I'm only rubbing your neck, love. It's not like I'm touching -"
"Fane, don't you dare," Jacque threatened before he could finish his sentence. It didn't help that he pictured what he'd been about to say. Jacque just knew her face was beet red.
"Are you taking notes when you're around Jen?"
Fane sent her another picture and Jacque about jumped up and left the room at that.
"If you could only see the beautiful shade of red your skin is glowing with right now. You look quite luscious."
"I've really been enjoying it. I'm learning a lot about pack history, which I find really interesting," Jacque answered, more tersely than she intended. Fane was going to pay for his fool's play.
Jacque spent the next hour talking with her dad and Tanya, all the while trying hard to ignore her mate's words and images, ones that would've made even Jen blush.
"I want you to know that this means war," Jacque promised as they were saying their goodbyes.
Fane chuckled as he placed his hand on the small of her back. "Do you want to go check on Jen?" he asked her.
"That's probably a good idea. Do you think Decebel is allowing her to have visitors?"
Fane laughed. "Are you saying he's going to be a little overprotective now?"
"No." Jacque looked at him from the corner of her eye. "I'm saying he's going to be completely unreasonable and we'll be lucky if he doesn't make her wear sack cloths when she's out in public."
"Was I that bad?"
"Uh, Fane, you didn't let me leave your sight except to take care of personal stuff for over a month. So, yes. Yes you were that bad and then some." Jacque bumped him with her shoulder.
"It appears we weren't the only ones concerned about her," Fane said as they joined Sally, Crina, and Marianna at Jen's door.
"We've been knocking for about five minutes. Either Decebel has her tied up and won't answer the door, or she isn't here," Sally told them.
"You think they're still in the meeting room?" Jacque asked.
"Worth a try," Crina piped in.
"Ten bucks says they made up and are smooching," Jacque announced.
"I'll take your bet and raise you five. I say they made up but smooching has come and gone on the agenda." Crina winked at them.
"You're wicked bad." Jacque grinned. "Jen would love it."
Decebel awoke when he felt Jennifer moving. At some point she'd taken a pillow and laid her head in his lap. He had stroked her hair until he himself had finally fallen asleep. He couldn't remember a time he had slept so well – even sitting upright on a love seat.
Jennifer had his wolf practically purring. He was so content at having her so close, so relaxed in his presence. He glanced down and could tell she was beginning to wake. He ran the back of his fingers across her check and her eyes fluttered open. She looked up at him and smiled. At that moment she could have asked him for anything and he would have toppled empires to make it happen.
"Hey," he murmured.
She stretched her arms up and arched her back like a cat waking from a long nap in the sun. Decebel made sure to keep his eyes plastered to her face and off her beautiful form. When she looked at him again, he brushed the hair away from her face and leaned down to capture her lips with his. When he moved back, she was grinning like the Cheshire cat.
"More," she ordered.
Decebel chuckled as she wrapped her hand around the nape of his neck and pulled him back to her. He placed his hands on her hips and was fixing to drag her onto his lap when the door behind them flew open.
"I win!" Jacque hollered.
"No you don't," Crina countered. "Look at his hands. They were absolutely not just smooching. There was some definite hand action."
"Oh, I wouldn't say definite," Marianna piped in. "More like the possibility of hand action.''
Sally turned. "My respect for you is growing in leaps and bounds."
Marianna grinned and winked.
Jen's head snapped up to look over Decebel's shoulder.
"What the hell are y'all yapping about?" she growled, clearly not happy about the interruption.
"They had a bet," Sally offered.
"A bet? A bet on what?"
"Your virtue," she answered dryly.
Jen's mouth dropped open. "I've already been felt up once today and look what that got me. You really think I'm up to more?"