A Moment in Time(9)

By: Stormy Glenn

Hercules raised his hand, looking Apollo direct like. “As a man who only recently found his mate, I will be the first to admit that I have fucked up on more than one occasion. I even fucked up enough that it almost cost me the most important thing in my life.”

“You’re not helping, Herc.”

“The thing to remember is that while we may live a little longer than humans, we are still mortal. We fuck up.” Hercules’s lips curled up as he crossed his arms over his broad chest. “So, get over yourself already and let’s find your mate.”

Apollo stared for a moment, his brother’s words washing over him and bringing him a sense of calm he hadn’t felt since he realized Grayson was missing. “You’re an ass, but thank you.”

The shirt on Hercules stretched across his wide shoulders as he shrugged. “Hey, what are brothers for?”

“Tell us what you know,” Ares instructed.

“His name is Grayson,” Apollo began. “We met last night at the party. I’ll admit I had a lot to drink, so I don’t remember much until I woke up this morning. Like I said, Grayson was downstairs making me breakfast.”

“Are you sure you mated him last night?” Ares asked. “Could there be any mistake?”

Apollo pulled the edge of his shirt collar aside, baring the mating bite on his neck. “If we didn’t mate last night, we sure as shit did this morning.”

It was a little embarrassing sharing that bit of information with his brothers, but they needed to know that Grayson was his mate. Even if he didn’t know where Grayson was or know much about the man, the mate bond was firmly in place.

“I have to find him.” Apollo didn’t care how much of a whiny fool he might have sounded like. He was drowning in worry, his throat so clogged with emotion he could barely breathe.

“Did he mention anything that might give us a clue as to where he might have gone?” Ares asked.

Apollo was appalled that he had to shake his head. He should know more about his mate than he did. “Things happened kind of fast,” he said. “We didn’t spend a lot of time talking.”

Ares chuckled, but Hercules had a more worried look on his face. “Is there any possibility that your mate could have been taken?” Hercules asked.

Apollo almost wished there was. He shook his head. “I didn’t smell anyone else inside the house or out. I covered the entire area right down to this point. There was no one here except the two of us since yesterday.”

“And you tracked his scent here?” Ares asked.

Apollo pointed. “Right to the water’s edge.”

Ares lifted his nose into the air and sniffed. He began to walk in a small circle, continuing to draw deep lungful of air in through his nose. At one point he stopped and turned to look at Apollo with the strangest expression on his face.

“Is he an alpha?”

Apollo’s face flushed as he shrugged. “I don’t know.”

As Ares began walking and sniffing at the air again, Apollo pushed aside his embarrassment and truly thought about his brother’s words. Could Grayson have been an alpha wolf?

He remembered the man’s easy smile, the twinkle in his smoky blue eyes. He remembered the way the larger man had looked at him, with such longing and reverence, as if he had just discovered heaven on earth and it was in Apollo’s eyes.

And he remembered the man’s unbelievable strength, the power that had sucked the air out of the room when he walked in. He thought about the overwhelming urge he had to bare his throat to the stronger wolf.

With the exception of Iben, alpha wolves were dominant, aggressive, needing to be the top dog in any situation. Grayson might be big and strong and more powerful than most anyone Apollo had ever met, but he had a gentle soul.

“He is not an alpha,” Apollo said with as much assurance as he could as he thought of the man’s gentle touch. “He is strong, very strong, but he is not aggressive.”

Ares nodded as if he had come to that very same conclusion. “I can smell the power in him.”

Apollo’s eyebrows shot up. “You can smell his power?”

“He smells a lot like Iben, but not quite.” Ares grinned. “No one smells like our alpha.”

That much was probably true. Alpha Ibenré Khenti was one of the strongest and most powerful alphas to ever be born. He was fierce, protective of those he cared about, and lethal to those he didn’t.

No one ever expected it because the man was five foot seven inches tall and one hundred and thirty five pounds sopping wet. He was a slip of a man with spiky hair and a pierced ear. He wore eyeliner and perused fashion magazines. He did not inspire fear in his enemies, which was their first and last mistake.

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