I could feel the power radiating off Killian as he strode with purpose, his hand on my lower back. There
was an aura around him that warned me to stay silent. At the very least, I had expected to be yelled at
or punished for stepping out of bounds.
But the other possibility had me growing excited. For the rest of the meal, his hand stayed firmly on my
thigh. The way he kneaded his thumb into my leg had me feeling needy and warm. I had never
experienced that intense of a reaction to anyone from such a simple touch before.
It had me thinking about what it would be like to pull him back to the bedroom and rip our clothes off, so
I could experience his touch more thoroughly.
Instead, Killian slammed the bedroom room behind us, facing me with glowing red eyes, his chest
rising. and falling rapidly. The loss of his touch on my back caused goosebumps to surface on my flesh.
His gaze over my skin felt like a flame was trailing along my body as he looked me over. His hands
were in fists at his sides, and I could see he was fighting his beast.
“Are you angry about what I said?” I asked softly, standing as still as I could. The man looked livid, yet
the worry that I would cause his restraint to snap, had me feeling giddy.
Something in my soul told me that he would not hurt me, but the look in his eye was the promise of
punishment. His left hand moved up, and he ran it through his dark brown hair before sliding it over his
face with a frustrated groan. The red glow to his eyes faded back until it was clear that he had regained
control of his beast.
“*siren.” He muttered, just barely audible to my human ears before he spun on his heels and left. the
room in a hurry.
I couldn’t help the smile that stretched over my face as the door slammed behind him. He was
breaking, and sooner or later he would have to talk to me. It wasn’t realistic for me to ask a king who I
didn’t know to give up his other women and allow me a full and fair chance at a real relationship. But if I
was going to be stuck living here, we could be friends.
He didn’t come back to the room that night, and I felt my hope vanish. I had laid in bed for hours waiting
for him, trying to figure out how to go back to how it was before.
It was the loneliest I had felt since coming here.
I had no one.
At least at my old pack, I had Jake for a long time.
But here, I had a significantly better life. I also had people guarding me, training me, and serving me,
so I had no reason to complain. My life could be worse. But none of the people around me each day
knew. anything about me. They were paid by Killian to treat me well. If I tried to ask them personal
questions, they would steer me right back to whatever it was that was supposed to be doing.
Except for Tobias. His unwillingness to talk made it even more difficult to get to know him.
Sleeping in Killian’s arms was the only time I truly felt safe and welcome here. At first, I wasn’t sure
about the intimate position, but then I grew to crave it. I wanted him to hold me, so I would know that
everything was okay. Instead, I wrapped myself tightly in the blanket and fell asleep on my own
because everything between us was not okay.
One step forward and two steps back.
Tobiased surprised the next morning when I told him that I would not be training. It had become a
I part of our regular routine. But I felt determined to go fix the damage I caused last night with Killian.
Perhaps, if I could get him to open up to me a little bit, I could understand better why he chose me at all
when he didn’t seem to even want a mate.
Tobias stood with his back to the wall opposite the office door as I knocked against the hardwood.
When there was no response, I looked over my shoulder gesturing my thumb to the door in a silent
question asking if Killian was even inside.
My bodyguard nodded, and I turned the door handle, pausing for just a moment. What if he wasn’t
alone in there?
The small push of jealousy and disgust encouraged me forward, and I let out a breath of relief when I
found him sitting behind his desk on his computer, just as angry and frustrated as ever.
He didn’t look up until I closed the door behind me, and I watched the muscles in his jaw tick as he
looked me over.
“Good morning,” I said softly, making my way to one of the empty chairs on the other side of the desk.”
What are you working on?”
Killian maintained his blank expression as he turned from me back to the computer screen.
“Can I help with anything?” Leaning forward, I tried to glance at the papers on his desk but was unable
to see what they were. They appeared in a different language, possibly elvish, and I sank back into the
seat as he continued to give me the silent treatment.
My fingers tapped against the arm of the leather chair, and the small growl Killian let out as he glared at
my hand made me stop. “You, uh, you didn’t come to bed last night.”
It wasn’t a question directly, but I was incredibly curious about where he had slept. He hadn’t ever
given me confirmation that he was with other women, but he also didn’t tell me he wasn’t when I would
hint at it. The secret door by the infirmary came to mind frequently over the past twenty-four hours, and
my curiosity was pushing me to explore and see who was behind the door. If I went in there, would I
find that he had slept there last night instead of with me? Was it one of his concubines who lived there?
“No, I didn’t.”
It was the first thing he had said to me, and even though I didn’t like his answer, I took it as a good sign
to continue. “Where did you sleep?”
His eyes were hard and narrowed as he glared at me, his dark brown hair in disarray, seeming to
make. him appear even more threatening than normal. “That’s none of your business.”
I nodded in understanding, my lips curling in as I bit down on them before letting them rest naturally.
His cold response had me feeling frazzled, and I couldn’t find the words to respond. “Right, I’m sorry.”
The tension in the room was palpable, and I let out a deep breath as I tried to figure out a way to start
at conversation with him. He was so short with me, seeming to be intentionally trying to *me down.
“Can I get you some lunch?”
I knew the servants would be getting him food, but I was hoping that he would say yes and give me a
chance to collect myself before coming back and trying again.
I couldn’t look at him. I felt embarrassed, dismissed, and overall rejected as he shifted through a pile of
papers before pulling out the same folded-up map that he had been studying. He turned his laptop to
make room on the desk as he stretched out the paper, unintentionally showing me the zoomed-in
satellite view of the northern mountains.
His finger trailed over the map as he glanced from it to the computer and back.
“What is it you are looking for?” I leaned forward in my chair, waiting to get a better look. Two pairs of
eyes had to be better than one.
Killian’s finger left the printed image of his land as he curled his hands into fists and let out a growl.
“You’re supposed to be training right now. Why don’t you go do that? I can’t think straight with you
pestering me with a million *questions!” His loud yell was sure to be heard by anyone passing by, and I
felt my throat dry painfully as water lined my eyes.
“You are the one who brought me here,” I whispered, as I stood from the seat, letting out a shaky
breath. “I was just trying to be helpful or maybe get to know you!
He didn’t try to stop me as I left, and the last bit of hope I had for a civil relationship dissolved as I left
Tobias stepped forward. The look on his face told me that he had heard Killian. His hand raised ever so
slightly as if he wanted to comfort me with a friendly squeeze of my arm, but I shook my head and
moved away from him.
“You heard the man. I have training I should get to. I’m sorry I wasted our time this morning. It was a
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