Once Mated Twice Shy(6)

By: K.S. Martin




Lettie lay down on the musty mattress on the iron-framed bed in the corner. Mister Thompson had let her spend the biggest part of the day cleaning the apartment. He’d brought her a refrigerator, made sure that the stove, and plumbing worked then filled her cabinets and fridge with groceries. He’d made her feel welcome and at home. She hadn’t felt those two things in a long time. The keys to his car were hanging on a hook beside the door. He lived less than a block away. Why didn’t she know that until today? Mister Thompson was a widow, once married to a wolf that died in a nasty car accident. He knew what she was the minute she walked into his store and told her so. She was accepted, welcomed, and treated like family, something else she hadn’t felt in forever. Lettie drifted off to sleep finally at peace for the first time in years.

Jordan paced the yard, front to back, back to front. It was after four in the morning and she wasn’t home. Was that it? Was she gone? Or was she sleeping somewhere else? With someone else? Jordan froze. His eyes flashed. Lucas. It had to be. Lucas just asked about courting Lettie earlier. Maybe he hadn’t turned him off the scent at all. Jordan stomped to Lucas’ house and up the steps. He banged on the door with his fist. By the time a sleepy Lucas opened the door, Jordan was snarling and having a hard time not shifting. His nose twitched scenting the air. Lucas showed him his throat in submission. Jordan backed away shaking his head. “She’s not here.” Jordan finally calmed.

“Sir, there’s no one here. Aimee stopped by but I sent her away, I know that she belongs to you sir, I didn’t…” Jordan shook his head again.

“She doesn’t belong to me. I don’t want her so please help yourself to Aimee.” Jordan blew out a breath. Aimee was trying to make everyone believe that she had some sort of claim on him. She never would. He couldn’t stand her.

“Who are you looking for then? Maybe I can help.” Lucas was always ready to make a good impression on the alpha.

“Lettie.” Jordan looked around at the surrounding houses, all were dark.

“Oh, she’s at the grocery sir, I saw her earlier.” Lucas smiled, so glad he could help. He was such a sniveling ass kisser.

“She never came home, I was worried.” Jordan’s eyes flashed. Actually, he was more than worried. He feared that he’d lost her forever.

“Oh well, I heard someone say that she lived there now but that didn’t make any sense to me when she lives over there.” He pointed to the small green bungalow across the way.

“Thanks Lucas.” Jordan turned and shifted then ran toward the alpha house. She’d moved into the grocery store. Where the hell was she going to live? In the damned frozen food aisle? There was a small couch back by the pharmacy where you sat to wait for pills, not that he ever needed any, because wolves were quick healers. “Damn it!” He roared once he was inside behind closed doors. The rest of the pack did not need to know their new alpha was losing control. An alpha was always in control, always strong and always dominant.

***

Lettie stretched in her little musty bed, her nose twitched. She heard noises from the grocery store and smiled. Her apartment was small but it was hers. She smiled down at the small rag rug with the mud stains that always lay beside her bed. Lettie scrubbed at those stains for hours but the red clay wouldn’t come out. Jordan. He knew how much it meant to her and he’d shit all over it like he did everything else. Not anymore. Lettie went to the fridge and got out fresh milk and a box of brand new name brand cereal from the cabinet that Mister Thompson brought up yesterday. She sat on the one and only chair and ate her breakfast. It wasn’t much to look at, but it was hers. It needed paint and curtains but it was hers. It was hers for as long as she wanted Mister Thompson said and Jordan could not barge in and take it away. Lettie smiled for the first time in days. With her dishes washed, she went to shower. This would be great. A three second commute was better than a three miles run. She could sleep in. Lettie bounded down the steps twenty minutes later, she was ten minutes early for work. She got started on the previous days deposit and the books. When she finished this, she would order stock. Mister Thompson smiled at her when he brought the cash envelopes up the steps to the small office.

“How was your first night Lettie? Was everything okay?” She nodded.

“Yes sir, thank you again.” He put up his hand. “I mean it sir, that was the best night of sleep I’ve hand in I don’t know how long. I actually slept all the way through till morning.” He opened the envelopes and laid the cash out on the desk. They got started counting and bundling the bills. Lettie worked until five then went upstairs to make her dinner. She couldn’t believe how much she’d accomplished today without the world sitting on her shoulders or her mind preoccupied. She was done with the ordering for the week, two aisles were completely organized, and then she’d finished the books in record time. The corners of her mouth lifted, this was what it felt like to be a person again. After dinner, she would take the car Mister Thompson was letting her use and go get her dishes then she would be done with Jordan and the Summerville pack. Good riddance.

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