Chapter 268: My Mate, Covered in Blood
I roar as I stumble through the doors of the hospital, my bleeding mate clutched in my arms.
Everyone in the emergency room freezes – doctors, nurses, patients. Everyone. The noise that comes
from me is unending, a demand, a plea, a threat. I am halfway between states now – my eyes filled
with the wolf’s flame, my hands ending in razor-sharp claws.
She breathes against my chest, barely. Blood drips from her.
The bond – I can barely feel it, between she and I –
And my child –
I take a breath, then, glaring around the room, and open my mouth to shout again. “DOCTOR,” I cry.
“Get me a doctor! NOW!”
The room collectively jumps at this, patients clearing away from the desk and heading towards the
sides of the room, the nurses leaping to their feet. A doctor strides forward – one I don’t recognize – but
he’s here, damn it, he’d better be good –
“Come,” he commands, stopping a few feet from us and then gesturing backwards towards the door to
the treatment rooms. He doesn’t need to look any closer to know that she needs immediate care. “This
I stride after him as he shouts out commands on his way. In my arms, Ella is deathly pale, passed out,
hardly breathing. I glance down at her, at her beautiful face, her rose-gold hair falling across it.
She’s strong – I know she’s strong –
But she’s given so much. I grit my teeth, growling, livid with the universe for asking this much of her. I
will not lose her to this.
A swarm of doctors gather around us as we move down the hall, the doctor who first met us at the
entrance taking lead and giving commands left and right. They move quickly, efficiently, bringing
forward machines and tools as we approach a bed at the back of the room.
“How many months?” The doctor asks, looking closely at Ella’s face as I lay her down on the bed as
gently as I can.
“Three,” I say. I could tell him the exact number of days, but frankly I don’t think it will help at this point.
“Halfway,” he murmurs, and then glances up at me. “Too soon for an early cesarian. The child…it would
“This child will survive,” I growl, grabbing the man by his coat and bringing his face close to mine. “And
she as well. You will do everything – you will move mountains, if I command it –“
The doctor, to his credit, does not quail.
“Sir!” he barks back at me, his eyes angry as he grabs my offending wrist.
I blink, surprised, and then release him. The doctor takes a step away from me and brushes off his
coat, keeping his eyes on mine. “I will move mountains for her, sir,” he bites out, his voice still low. “I will
do everything I can to help her survive. We owe you that. But it will not be helped by you losing your
temper. Is that clear?”
I feel my lips pull back from my teeth in a snarl as I close the distance between us. “You dare take that
tone with me?” I ask, my voice low with warning. “I am your King – you will –“
He steps up to me, then, our chests almost meeting, glaring up into my eyes. “You may be our King, sir,
but I am the Alpha in this surgery. And if you want me to save her life, you must back down.”
I feel the growl rip from my throat then, but I turn my head to look at her. So small – so fragile, in that
My pride is not worth her sacrifice. I glare at the doctor but step away. “Do your work,” I snarl, folding
my arms across my chest and stepping to the head of her bed. The doctor holds my gaze for a moment
more and then does as I say, getting down to the business of saving my mate’s life.
A moment later, the room is swarming again with people, with beeping machines and IV’s and tanks of
oxygen. They work quickly. Almost before I can comprehend it, Ella has a mask over her face to help
her breathe, wires and tubes plugged into her arms. The nurses cut the clothes from her poor fragile
body, strip her naked so that I can see the blood thickly coating her thighs. I almost flinch away at the
sight, but I refuse myself that indulgence. If she can endure it, then I can surely stand to watch. So I
stare, following their every move.
The professionals murmur to each other as they work, speaking in a medical language I can’t
comprehend. It’s almost more than I can do to stand still, helpless. I have basic medic experience, of
course, but I know that her life is in their hands, not mine. And it kills me to realize that, to stand here
and watch her fight knowing that there’s nothing I can do. As I watch, a nurse comes forward with an
ultrasound machine, plugging it in as another quickly spreads clear jelly on Ella’s stomach. Then, they
turn towards a screen, murmuring as they try to look at my child, assess his state.
I cannot see a heartbeat on the screen. My stomach drops and I hear a moan. A moment later, I realize
that the noise dropped from my own mouth.
“We need to take her in,” The doctor commands, stripping off his bloody gloves and turning to me. “Her
uterus is torn, leaking blood at the cervix, and her organs are in failure – she needs immediate surgery
“The child,” I growl, focusing my eyes on him. “Is he alive?”
The doctor hesitates, glancing at her, and then quickly nods. “There’s a heartbeat,” he says, turning
back to me. His voice is apologetic as he utters his next words. “It’s not good, Sir. If it were anyone
else, I’d…I’d instruct my team to let the child go, to concentrate on saving the mother.”
I snarl at him, taking two instinctual steps forward. “You will save them both,” I demand, my voice steel.
He doesn’t flinch, but instead nods. “I will fight for her,” he responds, solid. “I will fight for both of them,
as my Queen and my Prince. Trust me, Sir.” He bows his head then, briefly, before again meeting my
eyes. “I will do everything.”
I clenching my jaw against the desperate need to threaten him further – to tell him that if I lose either of
them I will rip his head from his shoulders –
But. My breath shakes as I force myself to exhale, my whole body trembling against my need to do
something – anything –
A single nod, that’s all I give him. It’s all I can manage before he returns the gesture and begins
delivering more commands. They’re on the move before I can react, wheeling her entire bed towards a
door at the far end of the room – taking her away from me.
I stride after her, refusing to be parted.
“Sir!” a nurse demands, daring to put a hand on my arm to stop me. I snarl at her as well, unleashing
the full strength of my fury as I bare down on her. She quails next to me, giving out a little shriek and
covering her head. I start again after my mate.
“Sir, please!” the nurse shouts after me, her voice shaking. “You can’t go into surgery – it’s not safe!”
I ignore her, though, storming through the doors through which Ella just passed, following her into the
surgery. Two more nurses move towards me, protestations on their lips, but the doctor interrupts them.
“Let him in,” he calls to them, his attention not wavering from Ella. “He won’t be parted for her. It’s not
worth the lost time trying to keep him out.”
The nurses hesitate but then give in, returning to her bedside. I move again to the head of her bed,
accepting the surgical gown and gloves that someone hands to me.
“You will stay out of our way as we work,” the brave doctor informs me, briefly meeting my eye. “You
can stay as long as you don’t interfere. I won’t lose her to your impatience.”
I consider it for a moment and then nod, agreeing to his terms.
The doctor begins his work then, turning his attention to my mate and beginning to deliver his
commands. Then, he raises a shining scalpel and begins to cut.
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