Inner Animal Ch. 03byRavenMoon©
I really can't apologise enough for the delay but life has been a bit of a stressful rollercoaster lately and I've only just got off and found my feet again. I hope you enjoy, what will probably be, this short extract and I will try and update as soon as I can. Once again sorry for the delay and I hope you enjoy.
Jason strolled leisurely around the large office admiring the large canvases that decorated the walls. His fingers brushed over the top of a chess piece just as the door behind him opened. Turning to face the tall man who had entered the room, he felt tension enter his shoulders and nodded in a brief greeting. "William."
William's hair was tied in a loose ponytail and he offered his hand. "Alpha Evans."
Jason shook it quickly. "Please call me Jason."
William smiled. "Jason." Gesturing towards the desk, he made his way over. "Please, take a seat."
Rolling his shoulders in an attempt to release some of the anxiety that was tightening his muscles, he placed himself in the waiting chair. William linked his fingers on the desk in front of him. "May I get you a drink?"
"No thank you."
William smiled gently to himself as if enjoying some hidden humour. "How is the pack?"
Jason rubbed the back of his neck. "They're fine, some disputes between the females but nothing that can't be handled."
He nodded his head. "I am glad to hear it. So how may I be of assistance?"
"There are some vampires hanging around the edge of our land which are causing fights to break out. I need some sort of restriction put in place."
"And so you were hoping that I would play mediator between the council and yourself."
The corner of Jason's mouth curved slightly. "You are the vampire I feel most comfortable around."
He laughed lightly. "I do try to be as accommodating as possible." Pulling out a piece of paper and a fountain pen, he began to write. "I will contact them as soon as I am able to and inform them of the risks."
"Thank you." Jason leaned back in his chair slightly. "So now that..." His voice trailed off as a scent came to his attention. His head turned towards the door just as the sound of gentle knocking filled the room.
William's deep voice answered. "Come in, Mia."
The door opened to reveal a grimacing brunette. Her green eyes ran over Jason and she tilted her head slightly. Blinking a few times, she seemed to shake it off before looking at William. Her face fell into a smile. He couldn't help but notice how young she appeared.
"I was wondering if I could have a word with you when you're free...?"
"Of course, I will come and find you when I am available." Nodding slightly, her eyes flickered over Jason again. "Oh: Mia this is the Alpha of the pack in central Manchester, Jason this is Mia."
Offering his hand she daintily shook it.
Her voice was quiet. "It's nice to meet you." As she continued to stare, she dropped her head and a blush coloured her cheeks. "I'm sorry; I've just never met a werewolf before."
He chuckled gently. "Don't worry about it."
She smiled gently before glancing at William once more. "OK, I'll speak to you in a bit..." Hesitating on the spot for a minute, she nodded before leaving the room. As she left, Jason turned to look at William's face to see his eyes lingering on the doorway.
"You love her, don't you?"
William sat back in his chair and exhaled heavily. "She is my mate; I cannot help but to love her."
Jason raised an eyebrow. "I was about to ask how the love life was going..."
"I only wish that you yourself should find such happiness one day." Jason felt a small smile come over his face. "Or is there someone already?"
Thoughts of Danielle drifted through his mind. "There is someone at the minute, I'll admit."
William grinned before walking over to a drink set and pulling out two glasses. "And what is this young lady's name?"
He waited until a glass had been filled before gratefully taking it. "Danielle and I think she's a little older than yours."
He placed himself back in his chair and focused his attention on Jason. "And where did you meet?"
Remembering their first stormy encounter, a wry smile came over Jason's face. "At her work."
"And what is her occupation?"
"She's a dancer."
"Ah." William's joy grew. "Mia herself dances, may I ask what kind?"
He thought of her sultry dance and the fluidity of her movements as she moved. Jason gulped. "Pole."
"Ah..." His smile faltered slightly. "I see... And what is she like?"
"Stubborn, argumentative and sarcastic as well as other things..."
"Right." He shook his head. "I am afraid I cannot quite see the attraction."
Jason laughed lightly. "She challenges me constantly... but she is by far one of the most fascinating women I've ever met." He shrugged. "There's just something about her."
A knowing smile came over William's face. "Have you considered the possibility that maybe she is your mate?"
"She can't be."
Jason took a long sip of his drink, savouring the flavour that teased his tongue. "She's human."
William's face fell. "I am sorry to hear that."
"To be honest, I'm just enjoying spending time with her. Usually, I'm in control of what happens and the boundaries that are set but she's fighting me for every bit of it."
A deep chuckle resonated from William's throat. "From what I gather, she is not your usual kind of female."
"No," He admitted.
A small frown marred his face which William seemed to pick up on. "There is something bothering you."
Taking a sip of his drink, he mulled over his words before placing the glass back on the desk. "I don't know how to explain it. There's just something about her scent."
"There's just something unusual about her, it's as if something's tugging at my senses but I can't quite figure out what it is."
William sat back in his chair and seemed to ponder over this for a moment. "Have you learnt anything of her family? Her heritage?"
"Her father's a doctor and her mother's a lawyer, from what I gather the rest of her family has similar careers."
His eyebrows rose. "And she is a pole dancer?"
Jason smirked lightly. "I'm afraid I don't know the answer to that what before you ask- it's a bit of a mystery."
"And perhaps this is why she is captivating your attention...?"
Jason considered the idea. "Maybe." He sighed deeply. "I'll figure it out."
"I'm sure you will, my friend." Lifting up the decanter, he poised it over Jason's empty glass. At Jason's approval, he refilled it before placing it back in his cabinet. Lifting his own glass he held it up in a toast. "To the complexity of women, may they always continue to be unfathomable."
Lifting his glass, Jason chinked it against the one waiting in the air.
Walking into 'Club Tease', Danielle blinked in surprise. The girls were already stood there in the main space of the club, opposite the doorway. When they noticed her arrival, they rushed over to greet her.
"How was it?"
"Where did you go?"
"PLEASE tell me you got a piece of that."
Shaking her head, she held her hands up in surrender. "It was fine, we went to a restaurant and Olivia- seriously? I'm not a hooker."
Shouldering past them, she headed towards Dom who was stood to the side with his arms crossed. Seeing his face lit up in a grin, Danielle rolled her eyes at his clear amusement. "Hey Dom, how're you doing?"
"Good thanks, it looks like you had fun..."
"Don't you start..."He chuckled and she playfully punched his shoulder. "Knock it off! Listen," Glancing over her shoulder, she looked at a woman who was hanging about nervously in the middle of the group as they tried to make conversation. "Who's the new girl?"
She nodded before, glancing back at Dom's face. "Dana?"
"Naturally." Hitching her rucksack up higher on her shoulder, she pulled her hair up into a ponytail.
"Hm?" Looking up at his face, she saw his face was serious.
"Be nice- it's her first job."
Sighing, she answered him honestly. "As long as she doesn't bother me, I won't bother her."
We ended up naming her Lily after the discovery of the large blue flower on the top of her shoulder which matched the vivid blue of her eyes. She seemed happy with the nickname and even seemed to relax more after Carley, who was known to be the socialite of the group, began to gossip with her.
"And that's Danielle- I'll warn you now, she's not going to share."
"I can hear you you know." Danielle threw over her shoulder as she rummaged through her locker. As Carley went off to answer her phone, the pole dancers began to change for practice while the strippers checked their costumes for later.
Danielle removed her jumper and stashed it in her bag before pulling on a tank top. She felt gazes on her but knew that they would soon vanish as people respectfully looked away. When she continued to feel someone staring, whispers began behind her.
"Just stop," Another voice chipped in.
"How did she...?"
Ignoring the quiet murmuring but feeling her patience slipping, she pulled off her jeans and slipped on her shorts to hear a quiet gasp. Angered, she slipped on her heels and turned her irritation to the staring new girl.
"What? Can I help you with something?"
She quickly dropped her head. "Nothing it's just..."
"Nothing? Well then stop fucking staring- I get enough off perverts so I really don't need your eyes on me as well."
"It's just how did you...?"
Danielle could see the tension in all of the others, could see that they were aware of what this stupid American was starting.
"It's none of your fucking business. Now you listen to me, if you want to last five minutes in this place, you keep your eyes to yourself, you don't ask questions and you stay out of my fucking way- you got me?"
Storming out of the changing rooms, she left the group of uncomfortable women.
Gina sighed. "Lesson number one, kid: let sleeping lions lie."
The morning dragged out courtesy of the rough atmosphere and the feeling of words being left unsaid. Danielle was in no mood to rectify the situation; her mood was foul and when Dom gave her a condescending look she slowly shook her head and walked away. It seemed that the group was struggling with itself, unsure where to gather in the clearly hostile environment that Danielle was creating with her mere presence. Dana just looked regretful as she occasionally looked at Danielle before quickly shifting her focus.
As Danielle leaned against the wall glowering, Gina casually sidled up to her and rested her back against the cement. "Don't you think you were a bit harsh?"
Danielle grunted deep in her throat causing Gina to exhale noisily.
"Not even a little?"
"It's her first day and already she's trying to pry into my business."
"Can you really blame her for being curious?" When Danielle looked away she continued. "I mean even we are and we've known you for years."
"I don't want to talk about it Gina."
"Fine," Pushing herself up off the wall, she glanced over her shoulder. "But at least think about giving her a chance, if need-be try to remember how nervous you when you started out."
Danielle grunted once more as Gina walked away to the group of talking women. Dana looked over at her before quickly diverting her gaze. Good.
Fed up of the intangible feeling of anxiety, she made her way over to the toilets and took a deep breath. She caught sight of herself out of the corner of her eye and turned to face her reflection. Staring at the face looking back at her, she noted the weariness in the eyes and the constant under-layer of pain. Splashing her face with cold water, she took a minute to compose herself before sweeping back her hair which was falling out of her pony tail. She could tell already it was going to be a long day...
Later on, Danielle lay down on her bed: feeling the full weight of the day's events press down on her. She exhaled and closed her eyes trying to block out the uneasy looks and quiet whispers that had seemed to accompany her every time she had walked past. As she felt herself sink into the lumpy mattress she felt herself begin to drift off when her phone buzzed on the dresser next to her. Groaning, she felt for it before flipping it open and placing it against her ear. Her voice was rough as she answered. "Hello."
"Good evening to you too." The voice on the other end was deep and seductive.
She frowned, feeling a sense of reluctant unease stir in the pit of her stomach. "Who is this?"
She exhaled in relief before lifting herself up to rest her back against the wall against her bed. "Oh... hi, what's up?"
"I just thought I would check up on you."
"Well I'm... wait a minute: how did you get my number?"
The sound of deep laughter came from the other side of the line. "I'm surprised you didn't notice before..."
"How did you get my number?" She insisted.
"I found it when I learned some information about you."
"Wow, can you make that sound any less stalker-ish?" She began to rub her forehead as she felt the approaching headache, unable to help the weary sigh that escaped her.
"It's just been a very long day..."
He sounded genuinely concerned. "Why, what's happened?"
Resting her head against the wall, she bit her lip. "There's just this new girl- we didn't exactly get off to the best start."
"Have you tried talking to her, trying to make her feel welcome?"
"Let me guess, you were your usual frosty self."
"Hey, I can be very nice- thank you very much! You didn't seem to find me 'frosty' when you stuck your tongue down my throat..."
She could hear the smile in his voice. "You didn't seem to mind..." When she snorted, he continued. "Talk to her, try and find some common ground."
A memory of Dana's wounded look flitted through her mind at his words. Swallowing back her pride she answered. "Fine, I'll be... civil... but you could have at least asked before you jumped on me."
"If I had asked: would you have said no?"
She gritted her teeth. "Well I'll guess we'll never know now."
He laughed again. Arrogant bastard. "Is there anything else you wanted or did you just call me with the purpose of pissing me off?"
"What are you doing on Wednesday?"
She paused. "Why do you ask?"
He cleared his throat. "I was wondering if you wanted to watch a film with me." Was that a hint of nervousness she detected?
She bit her lip as she thought on how she should respond. Admittedly, she had enjoyed their date. There had been chemistry between them and she hadn't been able to stop herself gravitating towards him, unable to resist the pull of attraction between them.
"Danielle...?" Jason's voice pulled her out of her thoughts.
"On one condition: I get to choose the film."
She struggled not to laugh at the relief in his voice. "Of course." Maybe he wasn't as confident as he made himself appear... "I'll pick you up on Wednesday."
OK, so I hope that wasn't TOO disappointing. Don't worry about the slight lull in the story or the unexplained mysteries as I swear things are going to get a lot more interesting and you WILL find out what happened to Danielle.
Thank you for all the amazing feedback I've been getting, it's so heartwarming (especially when I've been feeling shitty recently) and appreciated.
Raven Moon x