My lips quiver as Alejandro pulls me into his arms. His intoxicating scent and his warmth are the greatest comfort for me, but it doesn’t take away the pain that has settled into my heart. When your child is suffering…
‘We’re here for her.’ He says through the link.
I’ve failed as a mother. I’m trying not to let my pain show as I gaze at the door to her bedroom.
The smell of breakfast that I’m almost done cooking fills the cottage, and despite the pleasant warmth of the morning ray of sunshine that makes the small hallway glow, I’m struggling to remain strong.
Last night replays in my mind and I close my eyes, taking a choked breath. It’s hard… (FLASHBACK – LAST NIGHT)
“Hello?” I answer Alejandro’s incoming call, licking my finger clean of the brownie batter. It’s extremely late. He must have just finished off with work. Kataleya had sent pictures of their meal earlier. I’m glad they had some time together.
“You need to get to Sky’s cottage as soon as you can, I’ll send you the address.” His voice is thick with emotions and my heart clamours as I almost drop the brownie tray.
“What happened?” I ask, turning around. I switch the cooker off, hurrying from the room. ‘Serena! Can you come over and watch Alessandra? I need to head out somewhere.’ I call through the link as I quickly rush from the kitchen.
‘Coming, is everything ok?’ Serena’s voice comes.
‘Finding out.’ I reply quickly, grateful for her fast response.
“What happened?” I ask Alejandro, trying to calm my racing heart, a million thoughts rushing through my head.
“You don’t need to get anyone to teleport or anything… but as soon as you can, drive down. I’ll explain when you get here…
I close my eyes, his words relaxing me a little. Even if it’s not an instant emergency, something has still happened.
“I’ll be there soon.” I murmur before filling Serena in.
‘Darien is sending you two guards. Grab your stuff Kiara, the car will be ready.’ Serena replies. “Thanks, hun.’
Two hours later, the guards park up alongside Alejandro’s car, and I rush out before the car even comes to a stop, shutting the door behind me. Before I even reach the door, Alejandro opens it. My heart’s racing as I scan the cottage, about to rush past him, but he grabs hold of
“What is it?” I ask, as he pulls me against him and wraps his muscular arms around me.
“Calm down.” He says quietly, burying his nose in my hair.
“I can’t, please tell me…” I whisper, trying to control my worry, but I trail off, realising he
I hug him tightly, despite my thumping heart. Did they argue? Did things get really bad? Did she say something that hurt him?
He shuts the front door, and I see he’s mind linked the guards who drive off. Once the doors shut, he loosens his hold a little.
“What happened?” I press, pulling away slowly so I can look up at him before I look around. I need to see her. “Skyla?”
“She’s asleep.” His voice is strained as he closes his eyes. “She’s been using a concoction of poisons to control her Lycan.”
I freeze, my heart thudding as I feel a heavy pressure settle on me, my head snapping back to him.
No, that can’t be true…
I open my mouth, but I’m unable to speak.
His eyes are glinting, heavy with emotions as he tries to stay strong, but I know this is hurting him as much as me, if not more. He’s been there…
He’s done this to himself too…
Something that comes rushing back, squeezing my heart painfully.
“H-how…” I whisper. I thought she was doing ok.
How could I have been so blind?
He shakes his head as he leads me to her bedroom door and switches the light on.
There she lies on her side, her eyes closed and her chest rising and falling with every breath she takes. She’s tucked into bed, and my gaze falls to the empty bottle that stands on her bedside table.
“After dinner, we came back here, we got into an argument, and she stormed off to bed. I fixed the bathroom window, and tried to talk to her, she didn’t reply and then I dropped Kat off, but I wasn’t done with our conversation and thought it was enough time for her to cool off and since I took her key, I came back… I was trying to talk to her through the bedroom door and that’s when the faint smell of wolfsbane reached my nose. I wasn’t sure what it was and because she wasn’t answering, I broke in.”
I glance at the door, seeing that he’s ripped part of the frame right off.
He releases my wrist and walks over to the bed, sitting down on it. My heart breaks as he reaches over and brushes her hair back.
“That’s when I saw the vial on the floor. She had broken out in a sweat and was unconscious
says quietly glancing at the chest of drawers where I see several bottles sitting on top of the draw that is pulled open.
A clear sign this wasn’t a one-off…
Walking around the bed, I sit down on the other side and place my hand on my baby girl’s shoulder, pouring my healing into her.
She’s in pain… I can feel it. Silent tears trickle down my cheeks, my vision blurring as I take away her pain… but the thing is, I’m only taking away this physical pain… what about everything else?
Alejandro caresses her hair, her head looking so small in his large hand.
“She’s not… she’s not coping… This is my fucking fault.” He says quietly.
I look at him sharply. “Al… how is this your fault?” I ask softly.
“She’s a Lycan because I am.” He says, turning his head away.
I lean over, cupping his face and forcing him to look at me. “This is not your fault.” I say firmly, my eyes flashing determinedly.
“Life was hell back then Amore Mio… I didn’t let anyone in… I don’t want to push her too fucking far, that she ends up shutting me out as I did Raf… History is fucking repeating itself and this time I’m the one watching… helplessly.” His voice is low, but I can feel the pain and regret in it.
“I know Baby… but we’re going to help her. This is not your fault, the goddess blessed her with a Lycan, not you. We are going to help her.” I promise, looking into his dark eyes.
“If she lets us.” He replies quietly. He pulls away and stands up. “I’m going for a smoke.”
Switching the lamp on, he turns and leaves the room, pausing at the door as he looks back at our fiery princess for a few moments, before he sighs heavily, turning the ceiling light off and walks away.
I look down at Skyla. Leaning down, I can just about make her out in the dim light of the lamp. My eyesight isn’t great in the dark. I kiss her forehead tenderly.
“Why didn’t you share your struggles with us?” I ask softly as I pull myself up against the headboard, trying to control myself from giving in to the sadness within me…
A question I wonder if I’ll ever get a reply to…
(END OF FLASHBACK)
I hear her waking up, letting out a little groan as she stretches and pulls away from Alejandro and takes a deep breath.
For her, I need to stay strong.
“Mama?” She whispers. “Fuck!”
She’s seen the broken door. The sound of her running makes me turn as she stands there, her eyes blazing plum as she glares at Alejandro.
“Why is the door broken?” She asks accusingly. Her heart is thundering, and I know she’s scared that we saw those vials. Vials Alejandro has taken away.
“You weren’t answering. I thought something happened to you.” Alejandro says quietly.
But even despite his calm voice, it’s not enough to calm our little girl.
“I was fine!”
“Skyla… please calm down.” I say softly, as I walk over to her and cup her face, but she pushes my hands away.
“No Mama, why are you even here?” She’s angry, but I can see the fear in her eyes too. She’s more worried that she’s been caught.
“Can’t we be here?” I ask softly.
“I came here to live out here so I can be alone!” She says, pulling away from me.
Alejandro frowns. “Don’t talk to your mother like that, Sky.” His voice is low but firm.
“Then don’t come into my personal space!” She snaps. Turning away, she brushes past me and heads to the bathroom, slamming the door after her.
He’s about to say something, but I place a hand on his arm and shake my head. She doesn’t know he sat beside her bed all night… even when I drifted off into a restless sleep, he sat there, unable to even sleep because of what she’s going through.
‘She’ll come around. She’s just scared we are going to question her.’ I say softly, my heart squeezing.
‘And we fucking are.’ He says, turning away and heading to the kitchen where I had already begun preparing breakfast.
‘In a way that will help us reach her.’ I say gently.
He walks over to the counter and picks up his mug of coffee. ‘It won’t work unless she wants it to. Trust me, I fucking know.’
‘Until we try, we can’t say that.’ I reply softly, determined to get through to her….
It’s a while later, and she came out dressed all in black. She’s wearing tiny leather shorts that I have to admit don’t even look like shorts, a crop top, fishnet tights and heavy makeup. I know she’s trying to rile Al up, but I hope he stays quiet.
“Finally, you’re functioning, I hope.” He says from his seat on the table, simply giving her outfit a death glare.
She doesn’t reply, glancing at the table. “Where did the ingredients come from?”
“I had someone pop to the shop.” I smile as I motion her to take the seat between me and her father. There’s only three chairs. I had seen the remnants of one earlier, which Alejandro said was used to fix the bathroom window. I’m certain they could have found something else rather than break the chair.
She nods as she begins eating, not even bothering to look at either of us.
“Sky… can we talk about the vials?” I ask softly when she is halfway done with her food.
“What about them?” She asks, cocking a brow as she strokes Malevolent, who has just finished her own breakfast and has jumped onto the table.
Why is she acting as if it’s ok?
“How about you start with how long you’ve been taking that shit and where the fuck have you
been getting it from?” Alejandro asks, biting into a slice of toast.
She frowns. “Not sure. It’s not every day, just when someone pisses me off.” She says pointedly, looking at her father.
His eyes flash. “Answer the fucking question.” He growls.
“Like I said, it’s been a while. It got worse after I turned eighteen, alright?” She shrugs.
“How bad?” Alejandro asks.
“Like I said, if you piss me off! I’m fine when I’m not around you lot! This is why, just stop getting up in my business!”
“Sky, your dad is just asking because he understands he’s been there.”
“Yeah, I know, but the way you’re talking to me right now, it’s irritating as hell Mama, I feel as if you’re antagonising me.” She says, putting her knife and fork down. “I’m not a mental case who needs therapy or some shit.”
“We’re not trying to antagonise you Skyla, we just want to know if we can help.” I try softly.
She shakes her head. “No. You can’t. I need to learn to figure this shit out for myself. I made that serum and I want them back in my drawer when I return. It’s not damaging, it’s just enough to tame my beast when I feel I’m losing control.” Her irritation is rising.
“It’s fucking strong. You started using it after what happened last year, right?” Alejandro states coldly.
Her heart skips a beat and I realise he’s right. She purses her lips and stands up. “I know what I’m doing, alright? Stop playing King and Queen, who needs to fix everyone’s shit with me. I’m over what happened last year.” She says.
“Skyla please-” I’m cut off.
“Thanks for the breakfast, Mama.” She bends down kissing my cheek before waving at her Dad. “I’m out of here.”
“I’ll drop you.” Al says standing up. “Grab a jacket.”
She frowns, but he doesn’t give her an option. ‘I’ll try to talk to her.’ He says to me.
‘Ok.’ I say, as I watch my daughter walk out. She’s not willing to open up to us, and I’m concerned. Maybe Azura can get through to her… she’s closest to her…
‘Your hot chocolate.’ I say suddenly, getting up. I grab her mug and hurry out to the hallway.
She pauses and looks back at me from her bedroom door. A flash of guilt flickers in her eyes, but she shakes her head. “No thanks, there’s something I need to deal with at school. I can’t
“Well then, let’s get going.” Al says. He comes over and kisses my lips and I close my eyes, enjoying the sparks that dance through me.
‘I love you Amore Mio… I’ll be back for you after I drop her.’
‘Ok… I’ll clear up and be ready.’ I reply