He watched as she pulled her broken body down the alleyway. She had only minutes before well-meaning humans would arrive to help her. She fumbled with a man hole cover, her left arm hanging uselessly at her side. When she finally lifted it out of the way, she gingerly started to climb down the ladder. Her pain filled face turned and for a moment it was as if she was looking right at him. Suddenly, a look of panic came over her face and she fell from view.
Of course. She had slipped down the ladder.
Gavriel woke with a start, breathing hard. He sat up and tried to slow his heart. His mate had miraculously survived the plummet out of the office window and had managed to avoid detection by the humans, only to possibly fall to her death in a sewer. Groaning he lay back down. Maybe if he wished hard enough he could start this day over again.
He continually fought the urge to feed. His upper jaw was a constant ache du to his fangs lengthening. He had finally gone to Aiden's brother Adam to ask for more blood. The doctor swore that he would keep his secret and had made the necessary arrangements to triple the blood supply. Yet, no matter how much he drank, it was never enough; the hunger was constant and burned his stomach like acid. When it was evident that he could no longer keep up with the others, Aiden had finally discovered the truth and assigned him to protect Meryn to keep him out of the training courses. He couldn't fault Aiden his decision, in his weakened state he put the whole unit at risk. After the reassignment, he had come clean with his fellow unit members about his condition and they surprised him with their unquestioning and unwavering support. During his last transition he hadn't been with Alpha, and had borne it alone.
Knowing that the men had new drills to learn he sat up and got out of bed. He couldn't run through the drills with them but he still wanted to see what they were so that he could master them later.
He got dressed and made his way downstairs. When he walked into the dining room, he noticed that the other unit members were sitting on the opposite side of the table from Meryn. The woman in question was sipping her cappuccino with her eyes closed. He made eye contact with Aiden and held up one finger. Aiden shook his head and held up two. Meryn was on her second cappuccino. Smiling, he leaned down and gave her a light peck on the cheek. She opened her eyes, blinked twice, gave a small smile and closed her eyes again.
It seemed that lately only he and Ryuu were immune to Meryn's early morning wrath; it was one of the advantages to being at her side most of the day. At first, he had viewed guarding Meryn as an insult. He was disgusted with his own weakness that left him inside with Meryn instead of outside training with his unit. But as the days turned into weeks he came to look forward to his time with her. He found her to be refreshingly honest and direct. There was no subterfuge or hidden meaning to her words. Her mind was constantly moving and half of the one sided conversations that came out of her mouth had provided him with more entertainment than he had experienced in the past couple centuries.
"Gavriel, you're brave," Colton muttered.
"Meryn adores me, don't you dear?" Gavriel asked turning to the lady in question. Meryn merely grunted and kept drinking her caffeine fix. Ryuu walked up with another cup and placed it on the table. Her eyes opened and she smiled warmly up at her squire. Aiden grumbled under his breath.
"Leave him alone Aiden, he is Coffee God," Meryn warned.
"I'll be outside if you need me," Aiden said curtly and walked out the back door.
"What has his panties in a bunch?" Colton asked.
"We had a difference of opinion when it came to birth control." Meryn opened her eyes and blinked at the men.
"What do you mean birth control? Are you with child?" Darian asked.
Meryn shook her head. "I don't think so, but its a possibility. Especially since I'm human I can get pregnant at any time. Most human women use some form of birth control so they don't become pregnant. Aiden wants babies right away and is upset that I'm thinking about wearing the amulet that Vivian gave me that would slow my ovulation." She took a sip from her cup. "He agrees that I need to wear the amulet so that we have the option to have children a few centuries from now, he just wants to have a baby first." She shrugged.
"Babies are a joy," Darian said.
"Good, you have one. Then you wake up every two hours and feed and change it. Then you spend the next four to five years watching and guarding it's every step until it can walk and talk on its own. After that it's school, homework, puberty and attitude. No. Thank. You." Meryn shuddered.
"I'm sure that there is more to it than that, denka," Ryuu chided gently.
"Not by much." Meryn set her empty cup down and stood. "Okay peeps, I'll be in Aiden's office if you need me. I'm still helping Adair organize the training programs. Latta." She picked up her third cappuccino and walked out of the dining room towards the office.
"Gentlemen, lunch will be ready at noon. We're having tuna fish on whole wheat bread, fresh tavern style chips and fruit salad." Ryuu gave a half bow.
"I swear, I love this man." Colton pretended to wipe a tear.
"Just don't tease Sascha about what we're having for lunch. I think he's on the verge of snapping you in half," Keelan grinned.
"Our quality of food is the only thing that gets under his skin, of course I'm going to exploit it." Colton countered.
"Come on, the sooner we do our drills, the sooner we get to have lunch." Darian stood licking his lips in anticipation. Keelan and Colton stood and all three waved at Gavriel before walking out.