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Out of The Dark (The Grey Wolves #4)(9)

By:Quinn Loftis

As soon as she felt him, she knew something was wrong. She didn't know what, but his mind seemed jumbled and restless. Before she could speak to him, the face of a woman came into view as she leaned over Jen. Rachel, Jen remembered.
"How are you feeling?" the woman asked her.
Jen swallowed and licked her lips trying to dispel the dryness that had coated the inside of her mouth.
Her voice was hoarse when she responded, "Aside from feeling like a bull has danced the cha-cha on my body and then passed me along to his bully friends for the same mind blowing experience, well I'm just dandy."
Rachel scrunched her brow at the bruised face of the obviously beautiful girl before her. Her words indicated that she was in definite pain, but the tone of her voice was so upbeat. It confused the healer.
Jen, noticing that Rachel had obviously not caught on to her sarcasm blew out a shallow breath and took pity on her rescuer, "Sorry, I tend to have a smart mouth in painful, tense and otherwise completely unbelievable circumstances."
"So you aren't doing well, correct?" Rachel asked for clarification.
"Correct. I am most definitely not doing well."
"I'm going to give you an herbal tea with healing properties to drink. Then, if you are ready, I will try to explain where you are. Would that be alright?" 
Jen tried to focus on Rachel's words even as she heard noise around her, cabinets being opened and closed, things being shuffled on the floor and then a cold breeze rushing over her as a door was opened and then closed.
"That's Gavril, my mate," Rachel explained, "He is gathering the things I will need to help you. You have a long recovery ahead of you." Jen could tell that Rachel was not convinced that she could indeed heal her. This made Jen realize how close to death she actually was.
Rachel stepped away for a moment and then returned with a cup. Steam rose from the cup revealing the warmth of the liquid. Rachel gently place an arm under Jen's neck and raised her enough to be able to safely swallow the tea.
Jen sputtered as the tea hit her tongue.
"I know it's not the best tasting drink, but truly you need to drink it. Please."
Jen didn't know how she knew to trust Rachel, but something in her said she was on Jen's side. Jen held her breath as she forced herself to swallow the bitter liquid until the cup was empty. Once again Rachel gently lay Jen back down. She stepped from Jen's view and Jen could hear running water, cabinets opening and closing again. She heard Gavril whisper something to his mate and then a soft noise that sounded like a kiss. Jen's heart ached at the tenderness in that sound.
Rachel came back over, her arms full of towels. She laid them on the end of the bed. When she disappeared again, she returned with clothes and a blanket.
"Gavril has stepped out to give you privacy. We need to clean your wounds and I need to check your ribs."
Jen nodded. She knew this was coming but she seriously dreaded moving . Rachel helped her sit up. Instead of making her pull the shirt over her head Rachel pulled out a pair of scissors and cut the shirt off.
"Good call healer," Jen smiled.
"I have my tricks," Rachel teased back, "Although I'm afraid the pants won't be so easy."
"Oh well, what's a day not spent writhing in pain simply from removing clothing? I mean seriously who wants to go through life without that experience."
Rachel chuckled, "I bet you bring amusement to your mate."
"You might call it amusement; I think he calls it being a pain in the ass."
Jen winced as she laid back and tried to help Rachel remove her pants. Rachel laid the blanket across her, only baring the part of her that she was cleaning or looking over. She ran the warm wash cloth across Jen’s head cleaning a cut on her forehead. She probed Jen's scalp with her fingers and stopped when Jen let out a gasp.
"We are going to have to wash your hair to get all the blood out so I can make sure this doesn't need stitches." Rachel walked away again and came back with a large bowl of water and some sort of soap.
"It's a cleansing soap, I make it. It will help keep infection out," Rachel explained at Jen's questioning look.
Jen laid there with her eyes closed while she let Rachel wash her hair. She didn't move as she continued to endure the menstruations. They discovered that no stitches were necessary. Rachel explained that head wounds tended to bleed bad and look worse than the really were. Jen was out of breath by the time Rachel had helped her slip on the warm sweat shirt and sweat pants.
"I know you are hurting so I'm going to give you more tea, but this has some pain controlling properties. It should help take the edge off."
"Thank you Rachel," Jen breathed out as she tried to calm her breathing and quite her racing heart.
"That's what I'm here for. Truthfully I have missed using my gift. Gavril swears that I have let him get injured on our outings just so I would have someone to tend." Rachel laughed at her own words and Jen smiled once again at the beautiful sound.Finishing the tea, she watched as Rachel took a chair next to the bed.
Jen noted that the woman looked to be in her late thirty's or early forties. She was voluptuous but by no means overweight. She had dark chocolate hair that fell in natural waves around her elegant face. Her eyes were blue, but not just blue, more like azure and nearly glowed. She had full rose colored lips and Jen could see she had a small gap in between her front teeth that, instead of detracting to her beauty, added character. There was a peace about her that reminded Jen of Sally. Rachel's eye's met Jen's drawing Jen back from her scrutiny.
"What do you know of gypsy healers?" Rachel asked simply.
"Not much," Jen admitted, "I just found out one of my best friends is one."
Rachel's eyebrows rose on her forehead and her azures began to definitely glow, "A gypsy healer? Here in Romania?"
Jen nodded, but caught herself when she felt the sharp tingles and answered instead, "Yes."
"Is she wolf as well?"
"No, she's home grown, all American human," Jen said dryly.
Rachel thought about the revelation for a few quiet moments. About what it meant that a gypsy healer had returned to the Romanian wolves after three centuries of absence. She didn't count herself since she and her mate had effectively slipped from view.
"You said you are a healer?" Jen asked.
"Yes, I am. But I am not only a healer."
"Your eyes glow," Jen's words were soft as she pieced the puzzle together, "Mother of pearl; you're a dormant aren't you?"
Rachel's mouth took on a slight curve as she smiled at Jen's odd words. "Yes, I am a dormant. I'm the last one born in 5 centuries, both gypsy healer and dormant Canis lupis."
"Why are you living here all alone without a pack?"
"Try to relax. This could take a while," Rachel sat back in her chair and crossed one leg over the other. She looked off at nothing unparticular gathering her thoughts and trying to decide where she should begin her story.
"Gavril, my mate was a mighty Alpha three centuries ago to the Western Romanian Pack,"
"Western Romanian?" Jen interrupted.
Rachel cocked her head, a very wolf like gesture.
Jen raised her hands in surrender, "Sorry, got it. No interrupting, hold all applause until the end of the show."
Rachel shook her head, "You are very strange."
"You have no idea," Jen muttered under her breath but kept her attention on Rachel, waiting for her to go on.
"For centuries the Romanian packs were divided. Eastern and Western. Both were ruled by powerful Alpha's who were surprisingly agreeable most of the time. They had a shaky alliance that turned into a friendship over the years. My great-grandmother was the gypsy healer to the Western pack. Eastern pack did not have a healer and because of the friendship between the Alphas, the Eastern Alpha would allow my great-grandmother to go and attend their wolves when needed. She wound up having an affair with a werewolf, although now I believe she was actually his mate. Through that pairing a daughter was conceived and so on and so forth until I was born. At first, I thought that I was just a fourth generation healer and dormant. Gavril was the pack historian. He had no reason to know otherwise, so that is how he recorded me. But after the werewolf wars, and my mother's death, it became apparent that I was the only healer left. That was when I was finally told who I really was. She had finally decided that it was time to remind the wolves of their history." 
"She who?" Jen asked.
"We will get to her soon enough."
Rachel paused momentarily and Jen took advantage of the silence, "Okay back up a sec Charlie Brown, what do you mean they think your great-grandmother had a mate? Wasn't she human?"
Rachel nodded, "She was human," before Jen could interrupt Rachel held up a finger stopping her, "But more importantly, she was a gypsy healer." She didn't elaborate but just let that sink in.
Jen's mouth fell open. Even though it hurt horrifically, she propped herself up on her side gingerly, "Bloody hell, you can't be saying what I think you are saying. But you are, aren't you? Gypsy healers can mate with Canis lupis."
"Not 'can'," Rachel clarified, "will."
"Will?" Jen's eyebrows rose at the declaration.
"Gypsy healers are always the mate to a Canis lupis."
"Then why aren't their more dormants?"
"It is very difficult for werewolves to procreate, there is a reason for this but we won't get into that right now. It's even rarer with healers and a wolf. A child born of a healer and a wolf only comes every four or five centuries. I was the last known gypsy healer/dormant."