tagNonHumanStill Waters Ch. 04

Still Waters Ch. 04

byIread2relax©

Hello everyone, life goes on and each day brings new opportunities. In this chapter, I wanted to redirect the story back to my main characters, Evangeline and Declan, but I always try to tie up loose ends.

So hopefully, the dialog in this section of story does that. Let me know what you think?

AN: All characters are above the age of consent. Now, please enjoy, chapter 4.


*****

The family entered the dining hall. Everyone was relieved to see Bertha with her daughters. Some people came forward and greeted them, while other simply smiled. Each member of the pack felt Bertha's heartbreak, and even though she wore a brave face, they knew that these last few days were not easy on the matriarch. Kina and Reggie chatted for a few minutes and then moved to the buffet prepare their meals.

Many of the women took a moment to speak with Bertha. Despite the fact that she was often left alone, many needed to express their concern. Bertha took some time and answered their questions, while assuring them that she would be fine. She thanked them for their concern. She realized that it wasn't the pack members that isolated themselves from her, she really separated herself from them. Bertha sat and relaxed as she accepted a warm embrace from her alphas. She looked around, and sighed. This place was the same, yet different. Despite the fact that her world had changed, life went on around her as if nothing had changed at all. She sighed.

"Grandmama, are you ok?" Cam Jr. asked worried.

"I'm fine son. You don't have to sit with me. You should go be with your friends." Bertha suggested. Since meeting her grandson earlier, he rarely left her side. In so many ways, he was just like his grandfather.

"No, Grandmama, I'll wait." He answered politely.

The women that were talking to bertha smiled. Her grandpup was a true gentleman. Cam Jr. came to sit with her and waited as she talked with her friends.

"Auntie Vange, can you give me some bread?" Kylie asked.

Evangeline smiled, "Sure what else would you like?" Evangeline asked. Then she proceeded to help her niece fill her plate. Not to be outdone, Lawson latched on to his new Uncle Declan. Uncle Declan had a twin brother. In Lawson's eyes he was so lucky.

Evangeline helped their niece, Kylie, while Declan helped their nephew, Lawson. Cam wanted to prepare a plate for his Grandmama. "Grandmama, I'll fix your food. Ok, sit and wait right here. I'm coming." Bertha sat and waited. She smiled. Her grandson was such an amazing and caring young man. Soon, Cam brought her a plate full of vegetables and very lean meat. She thanked him, and he asked her to wait for him. He went back and prepared his own dish.

Soon everyone was seated and the family ate. Cam talked with Grandmama Bertha as she ate. She was fascinating to him. His momma never talked about her but he was glad to finally meet her. He had so many questions, and surprisingly Bertha didn't mind answering them.

Her other two grand pups would not be left out, they too wanted time with Grandmama Bertha. "Grandmama will you read to me before I go to sleep?" kylie asked.

"No, Kylie, Grandmamma is playing my game with me tonight." Lawson stated, "I promised to teach her how to shoot."

"Grandmama doesn't want to play your dumb game. Do you Grandmamma?" Kylie asked. Both twins faced Bertha waiting for an answer.

Before Bertha could reply, Cam Jr. spoke, "Grandmama needs to rest. Let's take care of her tonight, ok. Lawson, we can make sure she has her slippers and her blankets on her bed. Kylie, you can sing for her, OK." The twins nodded. They never disagreed with Cam Jr.

Suffice it to say, both Kani and Benia were shocked. Cam and Reggie smiled. They knew that if anyone could reach their mother in law, it was the kids. Grandparents and grandkids always had a special bond.

See, no one has even noticed us. Declan teased.

Evangeline smiled. Well, mate, She teased relishing in his new title. Don't speak too soon.

"Auntie Vang, Uncle Declan, can we go to your house?" Six year old, Kylie asked climbing into Declan's lap. Her brother, Lawson, watched, eagerly awaiting answer. Uncle Declan was fun, and maybe his brother Deacon would be there too. They'd have a great time at his house."

"You have to ask your mom and dad." Declan explained. "When they say it's fine, then yeah you two can come over."

"Yay!", the twins squealed. "Momma, momma, Uncle Declan said yea. Can we go?" They pleaded. Kina laughed. Declan was so cool, so calm. He had no idea that he was being set up by a pair of twins.

Don't laugh so hard, sis. Remember, I am a twin too. They won't be able to get over so easily. Declan sent to a stunned Kina.

She laughed and replied. Right, whenever you're ready. They are all yours. Oh, and welcome to the family. It took you long enough.

Declan laughed, Evangeline looked at him. She smiled. This was as it should be.

*****

Days went by, and life moved on. Kylie and Lawson loved being at Jackson. They found many new friends and they now had another Grandmama that could spoil them. A few days earlier, Benia and Lani along with their mates returned to Kingsley. Bertha shared a tearful good bye with her daughters. She shared a long hugged with CJ and promised him that he could come stay with her anytime. She also promised to come see him at Kingsley. Both Kylie and Lawson hated to see their older cousin leave and they promised him that they would look after Grandmama.

Benia was silent. She watched her mother say good bye to CJ. She smiled. She remembered the conversation they'd had the day before. She was cleaning the living room when Momma came out of her room. Benia stopped. "No, don't stop. Let me help." Bertha offered.

As they cleaned, Bertha talked. "When you were younger, you used to do get into so many things. No matter how much I tried to chastise you, you never stopped. Many times, you'd have your sisters with you. You girls drove me nuts." she laughed.

Benia smiled. She remembered her mother always coming down on her.

"Benia Angelica DuPont, you better listen to me girl. If you go back to that river again with those wolves, I'm coming down there and pulling you back by your ear." Bertha fussed.

Benia didn't see why her Mom was always fussing. She and her friends were just having fun.

Momma, sheesh, we were just hanging out. Benia fumed.

Hanging out! Hanging out! Bertha screeched. How many girls have gotten in the family way from hanging out Benia. You and Evangeline will not go back down there. Bertha was done. Now, for the rest of this month, you come straight home. I need you to clean this house from top to bottom. A little house work will give you something to do. Oh and Evangeline, you'd better be here with her. Bertha added.

Benia remembered she was so mad. Her mother never wanted them to have fun. Even after she was banned from the river and two of her girlfriends were attacked by males from the city, she was still mad. Now looking back, she knew her mother was right. She smiled. Momma was always right.

"You were right. I wish I had listened. But each night, Daddy would always check on us. He'd tell us that you loved us and wanted the best for us. Then, he'd sing. He loved to sing. I will miss that the most." Benia sighed.

Bertha nodded. She would miss that as well. "I was hard on all of you. Too hard, at times, but as harsh as I was, I never broke your spirit." Bertha added.

Benia talked and Bertha listened. Benia learned many things about her mother, and her respect for her grew. Her mother was a strong woman.

Benia realized that she was no longer angry at her mother. This trip, even though it was a sad occasion, changed things. She stood smiling as she wondered what her dad would think about this. She believed he would smile one of his crooked smiles and say the phrases he always used when something made him happy, "Hmm, ain't that right."

Bertha stopped for a moment. She looked at Benia. "You know; you and Kyron need to catch up. I have three beautiful grand pups and now I want more. Maybe a little Benia to pay you back for all the stunts you pulled." Bertha teased.

Benia laughed, "Well, you have Evangeline and Declan too. They can also provide you with plenty of pups to spoil." She teased.

Bertha laughed, "Ain't that right." She mused.

Benia smiled. "Daddy would always say that. Then he'd sing."

"Gosh, that grated my nerves. He'd make up a song about anything." She turned pensive. "I just wish I had been a better mate."

Benia stopped. "Momma, you were a great mate. We all knew that you loved him. He knew. Even though you rode us hard, we saw that no matter what you protected daddy, even when we felt we needed to shield him from your fussing." Benia added, smiling.

"I do fuss a lot, huh?" Bertha asked not really needing an answer.

Benia nodded, "It's ok. If you ever stopped, we'd be worried."

Bertha smiled. "I love you Benia. Never doubt that. You are my daughter and I will always love you."

"I love you too, Momma" Benia whispered, The two women embraced.

"Benia, Benia" Someone called. "Love, are you finished? We need to head out." Kyron interrupted her reverie. They were driving back to Kingsley with their pack mates. It would be a long drive.

Benia smiled, "Yes, I'm ready." She rose up on her toes and kissed her mate soundly. "Come on, let's go home."

*****

Willie watched from the heavens. He'd spent the last few days, sending thoughts and love to his children. He spoke to them in their dreams and reminded them of life when they were younger. He helped them to see how much his love, his bertha sacrificed to keep them safe. He needed them to see their mother as she truly was. He smiled, they did not disappoint him. His Bertha would be alright now.

Willie, it's time to step back now. You may watch, but you can no longer interfere. Alphonso explained.

Willie paused. "They will be fine now and I need to let them go. Alpha, where do we go when we leave this place?" he asked.

Alphonso sighed. "Most spirits return to the heavens and reside in splendor. They have no memory of the life they left behind. Those who are pure evil are forced to suffer in the same way they tortured their loved ones on earth.

Willie sighed, "I want to move on. My family will be fine now. Bertha will heal and she will meet someone new, but not if she is holding on to me. I free her and I ask to be freed."

Alphonso smiled, "Willie, you are a great wolf. Your desire is granted. Enjoy your afterlife. Willie slowly faded away and soon Willie DuPont existed no more.

Bertha looked heavenward. She felt relief. She felt free. Something had changed, but she was not sure what. All she knew was that her love had just given her his final kiss goodbye, but she was not sad. He was ok, and she'd be fine. Bertha smiled, and sent, I love you Willie DuPont. I will love you forever

*****

Early one morning, Evangeline was returning to her job. She was nervous, and had not slept the night before. Bertha searched her bond with her daughters to find that Evangeline was troubled. She grabbed a light sweater, and went for a walk. She knew exactly where Evangeline was hiding.

"Evangeline, why are you still here?" Bertha asked her youngest daughter one morning as they stood beside the river.

Evangeline jumped, startled by her mother's appearance.

"I'm sorry; I didn't mean to scare you. I know you're going back to work today, but I can tell you don't want to go there." Bertha paused. "Evangeline, I've spent my entire life trying to be someone else. I've been a wife, mother, warrior, protector, and yes, even a dictator, but I have always been a woman. I regret not taking the time to do things I really wanted to do. Your father wanted to travel, but I never had the time. When Kina mated, he wanted to go see them, but I had reasons to not go. You needed your freedom, and I needed to keep you close."

Bertha walked to the river's edge. She stooped down and ran her hands through the cool water. "Still waters run deep Evangeline. You and I are like still waters. We feel deeper than most, and bleed the hardest. I apologize for stifling you, but my love, you need to live. When you go to that job today, decide if that's what you want. If it's not, leave. Declan is here and as much as I want to dislike him, he has earned my respect. He loves you Evangeline and you love him. Go, be with your mate. Whether it's in Louisiana or here, you two deserve a chance at happiness."

Evangeline just listened. She had so many questions. But for this moment, she simply listened. Bertha waited. "Momma, you don't understand. If I go to Wildwood, I can't come back right away."

Bertha nodded. "Yes, but I'm grown. I'm not alone, and you really are not responsible for me. Try a new excuse."

Evangeline took a deep breath. She wanted to go with Declan. She'd go tonight if he was ready, but that meant leaving her mother. Momma looked strong, but she knew how hard daddy's death really cut her. "Ok, tell me this, what do you love about Declan?"

"Momma, everything. He sees the real me. From day one, he looked at me and he accepted me. I never had to pretend with him. I never had to..." Evangeline looked away. "Poppa used to always tell me that I was special, but I never believed him. He was the only one that saw it. Then one night, I saw Declan, and the way he looked at me. No man has ever looked at me that way. I will do everything in my power to be there for him, to keep him happy. The thing is he'd do the same for me. He loves me, Momma and I love him."

Bertha nodded. Declan was an amazing young man. She wished she'd gotten to know him before this awful event happened. "Ok, tell me what do you love about this job?" Bertha asked.

Evangeline opened her mouth to answer and nothing came out. In truth, she hated her job. She hated her boss. She looked her coworkers, but they were more acquaintances than real friends. When Alexia came to visit, she really liked her, and for the first time in her life, she felt the tendrils of a true friendship.

"Momma, I lo...lov..., Um li... lik... God, I hate that job." She sighed. "My boss, Ms. Jakes is awful. She has no respect for me. When I went by the office last week to tell them I was ending my leave, she refused to even speak to me. When I'm there I feel suffocated, but I'm good at my job. The actual work is rewarding. It's just the people." She stopped.

"Baby girl, give them their office. Come home and pack. You need to meet your family. I'm fine. Kani and Reggie are here, so you don't have to worry about me." Bertha explained.

Evangeline smiled. "OK, Thanks for coming down here, I didn't think you knew about this place."

Bertha laughed, "Girl, where do you think you daddy and I used to sneak off too. The waters of this river hold many of our secrets."

Evangeline laughed, and hugged her mom. She was not surprised when Bertha hugged her back.

"Now, I must get to the office. I'll see you at dinner, right?" Evangeline asked.

"Maybe, unless you are packing for your trip." Bertha teased. Evangeline laughed. "Come on, let me walk you back."

Returning to the compound, Declan met her before she reported to her office. "Call me when you get a break, ok." He whispered as he gently kissed her goodbye.

Evangeline hated leaving him. But she reported to work. After a brief welcome back and a few condolences, the day went on as usual. "Well, Ms. DuPont, I see you've decided to return. I don't see why an entire week of was necessary."

Evangeline replied, "Ms. Jakes, I needed the time. Thank you for being so considerate."

Jakes frowned. For some reason, she didn't really like DuPont. However, she had to admit, the office did not run as smoothly. "You know, since you took an extended leave, you may not be able to take additional time for any other reason. I mean, if you and this young man you're seeing decide to try and get married."

Evangeline smiled. She and Declan were already married.

"Ms. Jakes, you have no need to worry." Evangeline assured her boss.

"Well, that's what you're saying now. We'll see." She added. "You need to catch up. Fortunately, Iris was a true professional. You could learn a lot from her. Meet me in my office; we'll go over your duties." She walked off.

Evangeline froze. She could go home. Why was she here putting up with this awful woman? She took a deep breath. No, no, no when I took this job, I gave my word that I would not let my personal feeling affect my professional duties. She reminded herself.

Reporting to the office, Evangeline listened as her boss listed what she needed to be done. "I know this may seem like a lot, but Iris had no problem getting things done. She even smiled every day." Ms. Jakes explained.

Evangeline was becoming more and more annoyed. Evangeline simply went about her day. At eleven, she was headed to lunch when her boss called her. "Ms. DuPont, I know you don't think you have the luxury of leaving for lunch. You have a lot that needs to be caught up with. Iris filled in but she was not completing basic duties you should have taken care of." Ms. Jakes added.

Evangeline frowned, but stayed in to finish up reports that the other young woman could have done. An hour later, Ms. Jakes demanded that several reports she'd just handed Evangeline be completed. Evangeline closed her eyes, and her boss decided to berate her even more. Soon, disgusted with her, Ms. Jakes stormed off into her office.

Evangeline stood and smiled. She walked into her boss's office and handed her a neatly typed letter.

"You can't just quit. You signed a contract." Jakes fumed.

Evangeline smiled. "It's taken care of. While you were at lunch, Mr. Ross from the top office stopped by and we talked. He made a few calls and I'm free to leave. I'm sure you can find a suitable replacement. Maybe Iris will want to come back. Evangeline the stood, picked up her belongings and walked out. Everyone was stunned. Before Jakes could retort, Mr. Ross appeared. He hugged Evangeline and gave her a hefty severance check. Next his eyes zeroed in on jakes. He never liked that woman and after hearing the things he'd heard today, she was no longer welcomed in his company.

Evangeline left the office and drove straight to the compound. She called out to Declan. He met her as she drove in, exiting her car, she leaped into his arms. Everyone cheered. This was right. This was as it should be. "Let's go home." Declan whispered. No sooner than the words parted his lips did his alpha bond with Gaines sever. Instantly, he became a member of Jackson. Evangeline smiled. They would go meet her new family, but soon they would return and make their home at Jackson.

Welcome to Jackson, Declan. We are honored to have you join us. Ryelle sent. He was actually shocked. Jackson had never had a Fair Were as a member since Bertrand left. Maybe times had truly changed.

He reached out to his pack and noticed that his brother Jebutu and his mate Lavinia were uneasy. Ryelle sighed. Whatever it was they would face together.

*****

"Kitty, are you sure you're not mistaken?" Jebutu asked his mate.

Lavinia began to pace. "She is showing signs, the nausea, weight loss, irritability." She sighed, "We will be grandparents in few months."

Jebutu frowned, "When I find out who forced my daughter, I'm ripping them apart."

Lavinia laughed and then she kissed him gently, "Love, have you not noticed that our daughter is a beautiful woman now. She is very sensual. If anything, she probably seduced him."

Jebutu frowned. He didn't like anyone, not even his mate, insinuating that his baby girl was now a woman. "We need to ask her. She will give me a name, and I will make him pay."

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