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The Alpha's Temporary Mate (Fated Match)(84)

By:Victoria Davies


“You returned to the city.”

Her instincts demanded she slam the phone into the cradle. Her curiosity, though, insisted she see why her rival was calling.

“It seemed best for everyone,” she said.

“In theory, perhaps. In reality, it’s caused a few problems.”


“Kieran is on his way to see you.”

Chloe sat up straight. Her heart kicked into overdrive as the spark of hope she’d thought was dead flared back to life.

“He is?”

A soft sigh sounded through the phone. “You know how Kieran is. He might take a few wrong turns, but at his core he’s an honorable man. He could never be with me until he’d broken things off with you. Officially.”

He was coming to dump her. The battered flicker of hope was snuffed out once more.

“I don’t want to see him,” she said. “Tell him to turn around.”

“Won’t do any good. He’s already on the road. I just thought a heads up was the least I could do, considering.”

“Considering you came back into his life at the very worst time?”

There was a beat of silence. “Worst for you,” she said, her voice not unkind. “Best for us. We’re meant to be together. Surely you can see that. I’m sorry you were caught up in this, Chloe, truly I am. That’s why I wanted to meet you by the lake. I needed to see what sort of woman you were. See if you were better for him than I was.”

“As if you would have walked away.”

Chloe could envision the other woman shrugging. “I don’t know,” she answered. “I was serious when I said I will put the pack first.”

“It doesn’t matter,” Chloe said. “He picked you, right? Case closed.”

She was silent for a heartbeat. “I realize I have no right to ask anything of you, but I’d like you to remember that when you see him. He might waver, knowing how he’s wronged you. He might claim we’re not going to try again. Please remember that he belongs here with us. Send him back.”

“You are asking me to give my lover my blessings to be with another woman?” Surely her disbelief sounded in her voice.

“You called yourself kind. I’m asking you to be that for him, one last time. Do the right thing and let us all get on with our lives.”

“Good-bye, Lisette.”

The satisfaction she got hanging up on the perfect wolf was short lived. Seeing Kieran again was a bad idea. Who knew if she’d be strong enough to send him on his way as Lisette wanted, or whether she’d give in to the urge to turn him into a frog.

“I’ve got to get out of here,” she said aloud. The confrontation coming her way was not one she wanted to have in an office with thin walls.

Nor was it particularly one she wanted to have in her apartment where she’d forever remember what would surely be an ugly scene.

So where? She couldn’t stop Kieran’s arrival but she could take charge of how the meeting went down.

Opening her purse, she stared down at the penthouse keys she’d yet to return. As good a place as any to stomp on a little more on her heart. It seemed fitting somehow that their relationship would end in the place where it had first begun.

He’d driven like a madman. Speed limits had been meaningless in his quest to get back to the city. Still, he hadn’t managed to beat the night, which meant he’d have to wait before he could go after Chloe. No good would come from showing up on her doorstep at midnight.

Stepping into the elevator of his building he punched the button for the top floor. The time would be useful in other ways as well. For one thing, he could figure out what the hell to say to her.

Hours on the road and he still didn’t know.

Seeing Lisette again had been a blow he hadn’t been prepared for. Turning around and finding out Chloe had disappeared, though, was even worse. He didn’t know what he could say. What excuse he could offer. All he knew was it couldn’t end like this.

He stepped into the hall, rubbing the back of his neck. A week that had started so promisingly had crashed and burned, and it was all his fault.

Turning the key in the lock, he pushed into his apartment. The hall light was on. Odd. Had he forgotten it when they’d left days ago?

His keen hearing picked up the sound of someone shifting. He wasn’t alone.

Moving on silent feet, he slid around the doorway to the living room and looked out over the dark space.

A figure stood by the full-length windows, staring out at the glittering city.

The scent of lavender and magic hit him. Chloe.

“Lisette called,” she said, not turning around. “She made it clear you wouldn’t leave without talking to me, and I didn’t think this particular meeting deserved an audience.”