To Have and To Hold
By Michaela Bray
Date: December 25, 2020
Ch. 1313

Dinner was a mostly cheerful affair. The twins continued to remain sullen for the earlier part but with a bit of coaxing from their mates and the giddy excitement of the children in the face of grandmotherly pampering, the ambience soon improved vastly. When it was time to go, Raphael himself was loath to leave the small family but the kids were beginning to doze off on their parents’ arms.

“It was really good to see you again, Mom,” Cassandra murmured as Sarah drew her in for a quick hug. A few tears pricked the corner of her eyes and her stepmother laughed at her. “Now, don’t you go all sappy on me or your mate will be very unhappy,” the older woman admonished teasingly. “You have no idea how these male werewolves are when they think your happiness level ebbs even just a bit.”

She bit her lip. “How was it being mated to a werewolf, Mom? I mean, you married Dad after but I would think you would have at least been mated. I thought it was meant for forever.”

“I was never really mated, my dear,” Sarah replied sadly. “He was just a boy with so much charm. And I was just a young and foolish girl back then.” She laughed and brushed away a tear. “But that was all in the past and not all werewolves are like that. Mating means a lot to them, or so I’ve been told. Their lives revolve around their mates and that is that. Thank goodness your brothers found very lovely young women or I would have gone ballistic if their mates turned out to be banshees.”

Cassandra laughed and shook her head. The thought of her brothers marrying horrible women was so far out. She was not so sure the twins would survive under the rule of a domineering nagger for a wife. Melissa and Allison were such elegant ladies, she would have never figured out they were capable of shifting into a wolf.

“I hope that woebegone expression on your face isn’t my doing,” Raphael mused as they settled back for the long drive to his hotel. In the morning, they were due for a brief introduction to his pack but he was more than certain the members would all love Cassandra. Already, the bond would have imprinted the image of her as their Alpha female.

He heard her sigh on a yawn, smiling when her eyes started to flutter sleepily. The beauty of her never ceased to take his breath away. It was like nature took all that he ever desired and needed and crafted her perfectly for him.

“I might need to quit my job,” she murmured. “I never wanted to work when I got married, anyway. With you living in Dallas, it will be quite the commute if I stayed on.”

His heart soared in happiness at her words. It was quite difficult for a career woman who never depended on men to support her and he had even expected a little resistance if he ever brought up the topic.

“I love you,” he told her sincerely. “I have loved you ever since you stopped to give a hungry wolf your sandwich. I have loved you for so long I do not know what else to feel now that you are finally here in my arms to have and to hold.”

She glanced at him from the corner of her eyes. “I don’t know how it feels like for a werewolf to find his mate. But I am pretty sure that I want to give our marriage my best. This may not be love yet,” she paused and looked out the window meaningfully, her heart thudding painfully in her chest. “But it feels pretty close to it,” she finished quietly.

She shrieked a little when the car swerved suddenly to the roadside. She was about to yell at him when she felt warm lips cover her own. So soft, so insistent… So tender.

She splayed her fingers on his broad shoulders and the simple wedding band on her left hand glinted off the dim streetlights. In the dark, with her werewolf mate hovering over her, his lips a hot brand searing into her body and soul, she was ready to believe love could happen for her. Not now but definitely, it will happen for her.

A pack introduction, the upcoming press conference that would expose her to the world as the mysterious wife of a powerful and handsome tycoon, a man she had only just met on a trip to mend her broken heart… All her apprehensions faded at the magical touch of his lips.

Yes, she was willing to believe in this.


Megan laughed inwardly at the total havoc she had wreaked on the apartment. She loved the freedom of being a lone wolf. No packs, no rules… Without the strong hand of an Alpha, she was mostly free to do whatever she wished and if she wished the total annihilation of the way of life of one scumbag in particular, there was hardly anyone who could tell her otherwise.

Although, she had the feeling her latest escapade would have the backing of one particularly powerful Alpha.

The lock clicked open and she bared her fangs in a ready grin, the thrill of rampant destruction giving her a heady rush. The lights went on and a horrified shout resounded. Oh, how she loved making mischief! Especially if it was all in the name of revenge.

Showtime, she sang mentally before letting it rip.

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