Accidental Surrogate For Alpha Novel Chapter 22
“Wait, what!” I exclaim, not believing my own ears. “You got your job back?”
“It sounds like somebody very important called in some favors for me.” My sister confirms. “They even
gave me a raise to compensate for my troubles.”
She doesn’t need to say more. There’s only one person with enough power to undo a command issued
by Dominic Sinclair – and that’s Dominic Sinclair himself. “I can’t believe this. Why didn’t he tell me?”
“You mean you didn’t ask?” I can imagine the precise look on Cora’s face. Stunned and reeling at once.
“I mean, not after that first time.” I relate, wondering if I should have tried harder to help her. Did I
misperceive my importance to Sinclair, or the power I hold now that I’m carrying his child?
“Well apparently that’s all it took.” She relates, her voice full of elation. “Thank you, Ella.”
“Don’t thank me,” I object. “I’m the one who got us into this situation to begin with.” I remind her ruefully.
“Of course you didn’t.” She refutes. “Listen, I don’t know how it happened, but either I made a mistake
“Or what?” I press.
“Or someone did this on purpose.” She sounds uncertain now, as if she can’t fathom the motive for
such an act. I find myself equally confused.
“Why would they?” I fret, not wanting to believe my sister messed up so badly, but not seeing any logic
in the alternative.
“I don’t know.” She confesses. “But that’s not important now. It’s all going to be okay from here on out.
You get your baby, I get my career… the only thing we need now is to find a way to get revenge on
“That was a much easier problem to solve before he fled halfway across the country.” I share. “I’m not
sure how I’m supposed to enact any sort of plan against him when he’s so far away.”
“You could always ask for Sinclair’s help.” Cora suggests, a note of teasing in her voice – the same one
children use on the playground to tease each other about crushes.
“No.” I don’t even need to think about it. “I don’t want him to think I’m high maintenance. He’s already
helped me so much.” Glancing at the closed door Sinclair disappeared behind, I sidle back towards the
entrance, lowering my voice to a whisper. “If I start to seem like too much trouble he might change his
mind about letting me have visitation rights with the baby. It’s honestly driving me crazy – I’ve got to
censor every single word that comes out of my mouth.”
“It’s not as if you were an open book before, Elle.” Cora replies wryly.
“No, this is different.” I clarify. “I’m constantly afraid that I’ll say the wrong thing and make myself seem
weak or fragile, too annoying to put up with. It’s exhausting.” I drag my hand through my hair. “I end up
over-analyzing everything I do with him. I shouldn’t have cried, I was too sassy, too timid, too bold. It’s
like walking an emotional tightrope. And the worst part is that he can read me so damned well that
even when I try to hide what I’m feeling, he still works it out.”
“I’m sorry sweetie.” Cora commiserates.
“Thanks,” I sigh, “I think I just need a little more time to get my bearings. Once I figure Sinclair out I’ll
understand what I need to do to keep my head above water.”
There’s a pregnant pause on the other end of the line.
“What?” I prompt my sister, knowing she wants to say something.
“It’s just that I worry when I hear you talk that way.” Cora admits. “It’s like you’re still in survival mode –
‘keeping your head above water,’ rather than taking care of yourself, making yourself happy and
enjoying becoming a mother.”
“Yeah well, like it or not, this is a survival situation.” I counter cynically, “if I don’t perform well I lose my
baby. The best I can hope for if I do perfectly is visitation rights after Sinclair finds his mate, and even
that could mean anything from every weekend to once a year. I don’t want to risk landing with the latter
or bungling the deal completely.”
Cora sighs heavily, and lets the matter drop. “How are you otherwise? Any morning sickness?” She
asks, excitement entering her tone.
I laugh. “I spent all morning in the bathroom… but I’ve never been happier to be sick.”
“Aw, I’ve never been happier for you to feel miserable either.” She jokes. “I hope it keeps up.”
“Me too.” The more the baby makes its presence known, the more secure I feel that it’s growing big
“Anyway, I’ve gotta run. Sinclair brought me to meet his father.” I confess. “It was great to talk though,
let’s have dinner soon.”
Lunch with Sinclair’s father was surprisingly pleasant. I don’t know what I imagined when I pictured the
elder Alpha, but the sweet man in the wheelchair was far from the imposing figure I expected. He
radiated quiet strength and dignity, but he also welcomed me to his family with genuine warmth. I could
see the shadow of a powerful leader in his stoic demeanor, but also the humility of a man whose
circumstances had irrevocably changed and who chose to adapt rather than rail at the world for its
injustice. He was obviously incredibly proud of his son, and obviously thrilled to become a grandfather.
I felt far more at ease when we finally left his home, and I spent the rest of the day napping and reading
my pregnancy books. I can’t believe how tired I’ve been, or how hungry. I expected the changes, I just
didn’t think they’d happen so fast. Of course after so much rest, I couldn’t sleep when night finally fell. It
took me ages to finally drift off, and when I finally found rest – nightmares awaited me.
I found myself trapped in the horrors of my past: reliving the orphanage and the foster homes, all full of
cruel adults and abusive parents. In my dreams I’m always running away from someone, trying to
protect Cora and my other surrogate siblings. The dreams have gotten worse since I got pregnant, no
doubt driven by my raging hormones.
Tonight takes me back to one of the worst days of my life. The sounds of my own screams and
pleading tears fill my head, as dreadful images fill my vision. The next thing I know someone is
shouting my name, and my eyes snap open.
“Ella!” Sinclair is sitting beside me on my bed, his powerful hands gripping my shoulders as he tries to
bring me back to reality. It takes me a minute to realize it’s him, rather than the man who’d been
attacking me in my dreams. I jerk out of his hold and scramble to the other side of the mattress, curling
up into a little ball and gasping for air.
“Easy sweetheart, it’s only me.” Sinclair assures me, making a soft purring sound that magically
unwinds my taut muscles. How does he do that?
There are tears streaming down my face, and again I feel a stab of shame for showing this weakness
in front of him. “I’m okay.” I stammer once I come back to myself. “I’m okay.”
Sinclair shushes me softly, and though I thought I was out of his reach, I clearly underestimated the
length of his strong arms. He plucks me from the corner and pulls me into his lap. “You don’t have to be
okay, Ella.” He remarks gently, cuddling me close. “You’re safe.”
Those words are like a balm on my soul, but I know where they lead. If I let him comfort me, he’s going
to want to know what happened. And I don’t want to talk about my dreams, I don’t want him to feel like
I’m some fragile creature he has to soothe. I scramble for something to pull his attention away from me,
landing on a question that has been burning in my mind since this afternoon. “Why didn’t you tell me
about Cora’s job?”
Sinclair seems taken aback. “What? Were you dreaming about Cora?”
“No.” I sniffle, “I just want to know.”
“You want to distract me, more like.” Sinclair guesses shrewdly. At first I think this means he won’t
answer, but then he says. “I didn’t tell you because I didn’t do it for you. I did it because it was right.”
Why does my heart sink when he says it wasn’t for me? Did I want it to be? Would it be better if he only
took action to please me, rather than doing so for the sake of morality? No, of course not… so why
does it sting so badly?
“Oh.” I murmur, unable to conjure any more eloquent response.
“Does that disappoint you?” He asks, sounding curious, rather than judgemental.
“No, I just didn’t expect it.” I admit.
“Because I’m the big bad wolf?” Sinclair teases, petting me in long, tender caresses.
I nod, pressing my nose to his chest. “I keep waiting for you to huff and puff, and blow my house down.”
I joke through my tears.
Sinclair chuckles, and for one long moment he simply holds me, rocking me back and forth until my
racing heartbeat slows. “I ought to make you tell me about your dreams.” He muses, making my limbs
stiffen up again. “But I won’t.” His lips graze my hair, and butterflies burst to life in my tummy. “That
said, I think you should sleep with me from now on.”
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