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       I had to let Ava go to him. I was happy to be alone, anyway. The whole thing was too much for me.

           I knew she was mad at him for keeping things from her, but I was at a loss of what to do.


           I knew that I wanted to Mark her. There was no doubt in my mind about that. However, there was much, much doubt on whether Ava would actually allow me to Mark her.

           No. No, she couldn’t just allow me. She had to want me to Mark her. The ceremony would take place tonight on the beach, formally making me the Alpha. The Alpha got first-pick. He chose who he wanted, and I’ve never heard of any of the females refusing to mate with the Alpha. If anything, the females were fighting over who would become Alpha Female.

However, I was completely sure that if a female were didn’t want to mate to a particular Shifter, she didn’t have to. Females were just too precious to defy. The problem was, an Alpha isn’t just any wolf. An Alpha is the leader of the pack. I wasn’t going to force Ava to do anything she didn’t want to, but I was expected to chose a mate.

And the Mating ceremony usually takes place the day after the ceremony needed to become leader.

I let my head fall onto my hands, a groan escaping from my lips. What the **** am I going to do?


I rubbed my eyes and trudged into the kitchen. Roman and I had fallen asleep on the couch, me in his arms.

My eyes scanned the refrigerator shelves, looking for something with caffeine to wake me up. I raised my eyebrows at the bag of black powder and opened it, lifting it to my nose. Mmm, the sweet, sweet smell of coffee. Who knew that there was fresh coffee beans on this island?


It finally dawned on me how much I hadn’t done since my arrival on the island. I sat perched on the small counter, the cup of coffee in my hands. I was bored out of my mind, the only thing occupying my attention were the tentative sips of coffee every few minutes.

I’d always been a great student, A’s and B’s, in all honors classes. I worked hard for those grades, which always seemed to be taking up my time. And when I wasn’t doing schoolwork, I was feeding the pigs or cleaning the horses’ stalls.

I bit my lip, noticing the pile of empty dishes in the sink next to me. Weird. I feel like we’re never eating when we’re here.

I grabbed the sponge and began scrubbing away.


Roman woke up a few hours later, walking into the bedroom, where I was dusting off the cabinets.

“What are you doing?” he asked, voice hoarse.

I smiled. “Oh, just a bit of cleaning.”

“God, you’re not one of those clean freaks, are you? If I go in your closet, will I find all your clothes arranged by color, in the order of ROY-G-BIV?” he cried.

I hit him playfully with my towel, rolling my eyes. “Definitely.”


           I rolled over, my hands grasping nothing but air. My breath caught in my throat as I came to the apparently profound realization that Ava hadn’t come back to the cabin in the duration of my sleep.

            It’s okay, Jace. She probably just accidentally fell asleep. No big deal. It’s okay, a voice in my head reassured me.

           I sighed, running my hands through my hair. A single quick glance at the clock told me that it was past 10, and she would’ve been back by now if she hadn’t consciously decided to stay at Roman’s.

           A growl escaped my throat, my jaw clenching at the thought of Roman with Ava.

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