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|Out Of The Dark(Grey Wolves #4) by Quinn Loftis|
"I'm sorry, Jen. I can't have you telling your mate too much. You might not even realize you are giving up clues to where he or your pack might find you."
Jen was trying very hard to see it from Rachel's point of view, but the dark hole inside her was not making her particularly understanding.
"There will be some consequences to the bond being severed. And it isn't permanent. But I can keep the effects to a minimum."
"What consequences?" Jen narrowed her eyes at the healer who she'd so wanted to believe wouldn't hurt her. Now she wasn't sure.
"My love." Fane caressed Jacquelyn's face as he tried to wake her. "We need to get ready."
Everyone else had already gotten up and begun getting ready for the journey they each had ahead of them. Fane had let Jacquelyn sleep an extra ten minutes, knowing that emotions were going to be running high today. It was going to be exhausting.
To his surprise, his usually morning-hating mate sat up abruptly. She looked at him, her hair a mess from sleeping. Instead of a smile he saw the hard glint of determination in her emerald eyes.
"I know you want to jump and run out the door, Luna, but we can't help Jen or Decebel if we don't take care of ourselves. So a quick shower, then food. Okay?"
"Tell me we are going to fix this, Fane. I know you told me last night, but I've slept since then. So please tell me that we will find her and get his memories back."
Fane stood up and walked around to the other side of the bed. Taking her hand, he pulled her up to stand in front of him. He tilted her chin so that he was staring into eyes that he could stare into for the rest of eternity.
"I give you my word. I will do anything and everything to get Jen back to us and Decebel restored. They are as much my family as yours and they are pack. I protect what is mine. And though I am not Alpha, I am prince of the Romanian Greys. Decebel and Jen are mine. Are we clear?"
Jacque looked into the beautiful face of her mate. She could feel the love, concern, unbending determination, and single minded focus to do exactly as he said he would.
"We're clear. I trust you."
Fane pulled her close to him, wrapping his arms around her. One hand held her firmly on her lower back and the other caressed the nape of her neck. When his lips met hers the world and all the worry, grief, strife, and pain melted away. It was just her and Fane. She wrapped her arms around his neck, running her fingers through his hair. She pressed her body closer to his and was rewarded with a low growl. After several minutes, Fane pulled back, his lips moist from their kiss. She smiled when she realized he was just as out of breath as she was.
"I could kiss you every day, all day, and I would never get enough." Though he had stopped the kiss he had not loosened his hold on her.
"You are in luck." She grinned wickedly.
"And why is that, Luna?"
Jacque stood up on her toes and pressed her mouth to Fane's ear. She felt his body tense against hers. "Because I plan to let you kiss me – often and mostly on the mouth," she told him with a gentle breath of air against his ear and neck
Jacque started laughing when Fane growled at her words. She loved that she could still rattle his cage, loved keeping him on his toes.
"Thank you," Jacque whispered in his mind.
"For what?" Fane honestly didn't know what she could be thanking him for.
"For giving me that. For continuing to show me affection and love, even with all of this going on."
"Jacquelyn, look at me." Fane's words were gentle but still a command.
She did as he told her.
"You always come first. Always. And it isn't only you who needs to feel loved, wanted, and needed. We are wolves – love, touch is essential to us." Fane kissed her forehead and released her. "You go shower. I will meet you downstairs for breakfast."
"Hold up." Jacque realized Fane wasn't wearing the clothes he had gone to sleep in. He had on a pair of green cargo pants and a black, long sleeved shirt. "Where'd you get those clothes and where can I get some?" She needed to get out of her soot-covered ensemble in the worst way.
"The owner went around to people in the village and got the clothes donated. There should be some in the bathroom down the hall. They might not fit perfectly but at least they are clean."
"I don't care if they're rags or cashmere. I just need to get out of these clothes." She looked up at him and smiled. "Thanks, wolf-man. I'll see you in a few."
Fane winked at her as he left the room.
Jacque knocked on the bathroom door. There was only one in the whole tavern and she was sharing it with the rest of the pack.
"I'm almost done." It was a familiar female voice.
"Sally, it's Jacque. Open up."
The door opened just enough for Sally to poke her head out. Jacque felt the steam from the hot shower caress her face as it swirled past her.
"It's just you?"
Jacque rolled her eyes. "Yes, healer, it's just me. Now let me in."
Sally opened the door farther as she huffed, "Well, you might have had your wolf with you. I didn't want to open the door like this –" Sally made an up and down motion with her hand indicating her towel clad body, "– and be like 'oh, hey Fane, how's it going, Fane? I'm just standing around in my towel hanging out doing my thing, Fane.'"
Jacque shut the door behind her and shook her head at Sally. "You are a disturbed little gypsy."
Jacque looked around, quickly seeing the shower along the wall across from the door. It was a simple tiled square with a drain in the floor. A blue shower curtain hung across it. Beside the shower was a small table that held clothes and towels. Jacque couldn't help the grin that spread across her face as she began to undress.
Sally gave her a weak smile. "I'm sorry. I'm just all out of sorts. I'm getting weird vibes and -"
"What do you mean weird vibes? From Jen? The forest? About Dec?" Jacque interrupted
Sally stopped brushing her hair mid-stroke. She turned from the old mirror to look at her best friend. "You done? You gonna let me finish now?"
Jacque held up her hands in surrender. "Oh, man. I'm sorry. I'm perilously close to the freak-out wagon aren't I?"
"I definitely think you need to take a couple of steps back. It's too early to jump on that wagon. I assure you I will give you the full go-ahead when it's time."