logan's choice (dark hollow wolf pack #3) Page 10
“Can I ask you something?”
“Sure, what do you want to know?”
“When you came back out of the council room, you were furious at me. I know I shouldn’t have said what I did to that jerk, but why did you get so angry? He taunted me, you know.”
Ian sat down at the table, motioning for Logan to join him. “I know, and I was more furious at Casey than you. The one cardinal rule of the Wolf Pack is that we protect our pets and our mates at all costs. That rule is first and foremost and is never to be broken. The idea of another wolf attacking one of our mates is unthinkable. Our law forbids even touching another wolf’s mate. When you said what you did to Casey, he totally lost his temper and attacked. Luckily, he retained enough sense not to seriously hurt you. When I saw those bruises on your arms, though, I got furious all over again. You have to watch what you say to the wolves, Logan, and never touch one. I can’t stress that enough. It would be so provocative to him. Even if you didn’t mean it that way, he might think you’re coming on to him.”
“I lost my temper too. He sneered at me about being a coward—said I didn’t look so tough.” His face flamed, and he touched his collar. “Probably because of this.”
Ian reached across the table and pulled down his hand. “Casey has a smart mouth. He gave his own mate a hard time when they first got together. The collar is a sign to all other wolves that you belong to me. That you’re my mate. It’s there to protect you, not humiliate you. It should make you feel owned and cherished, because you are.”
“What happened to Casey?”
“You mean after they pulled me off him?” Ian smiled grimly. “I don’t know—they got me out of there, but I’m sure Marco had more than a few choice words for him.”
“What’s his deal, anyway?”
“Casey is a hot head, but Hunters have threatened us for years and too often they’ve killed our kind without provocation. Tensions are running high, especially after the attack on Marco and Rory.”
“I didn’t shoot them,” he said, knowing itprobably didn’t make any difference. He’d been with the group that did. “I thought once I was bitten, I was this Werekin thing, not a Hunter anymore and the things I did before are forgotten.”
“That’s right. Casey was way out of line to taunt you.”
“Is it because—because we’re both men? Because I let you…” His voice trailed off, and he shook his head in confusion. “His own mate is a male, right?”
Ian smiled and shook his head.“The sex of our matesdoesn’t matter to us,” he said in reminder. “Yes, Casey’s mate is a male. So is Marco’s, a very colorful, beautiful young man named Nicky. I’m sure you’ll meet both of them soon.” He covered Logan’s hand with his. “Logan, I’ve tried to tell you we don’t have the same human prejudices here. Since our blood most often picks our mates,and we never know until we meet them what gender they’ll be, we don’t pay any attention to such concerns. Love is just love.C’mon. Let’s go down to the cafeteria to get something to eat. Go get dressed.”
Logan returned to the bedroom and opened the drawer Ian told him was his. It was filled with nothing but the tight leather pants. Sighing, he pulled a pair of them on and went back out to the main room. “Any particular reason why I have to wear nothing more than these?”
“It’s traditional. Looks nice on you, with your body, but if you want to wear a shirt, it’s up to you.”
“Then yeah, I would like a shirt.”
“I don’t have any for you. We can stop by the purser’s downstairs and get you one.”
Logan followed Ian downstairs, and they went first to a small room by the grooming shop. Ian disappeared inside, telling Logan to wait for him and returned a few minutes later. He threw a small black T-shirt at him. Logan held it up and looked up at Ian unbelievingly. The size had to be a small and would be super tight on him.
Logan pulled it on and looked down at himself.“You’ve got to be kidding me.”
Ian shrugged, smiling. “It fits you well. Some of the boys…er…male pets wear jeans, but I like the way the leather looks. You’re gorgeous in them.”
“Can’t we compromise, this when we’re alone and regularclothes out here?”
“I like the way you look in that.”
“Don’t argue with me, baby.” he said softly, trailing his fingers down his side, but the look in his eyes said he was annoyed until Logan shut up and nodded.
Cursing under his breath, Logan trailed behind Ian as they went into the cafeteria for breakfast. Wolves and their mates glanced up at them curiously as they came in, nodding respectfully to Ian. Their gazes raked over Logan with interest, the looks pausing at the bruises on his arms and, he was sure, the marks on his neck. Ian strode ahead of him and took a plate of food from the server, making sure, with a glance over his shoulder, Logan got one as well and followed him down the buffet table. Ian led him over to a table and sat down, speaking softly to the server who stood by their table and ordering drinks for both of them.
Thefood was delicious, but Logan didn’t have much appetite. After moving his eggs around his plate for the third time, Ian put a hand over his. “What’s the matter? You still think we’re trying to poison you?”
Logan flushed. “No, of course not. I just don’t seem to have any appetite.”
“It’s because you fed from me earlier. You could live indefinitely off just my blood, but it’s better if you eat regular food too. Try to eat something. It will make you feel better.”
“What do you mean I could live off just your blood?What am I, a fucking vampire too?”
“Humans and their legends.” He laughed softly. “No, Logan, you’re my mate, a high order of Werekin. When I mated with you, the combination of the bite, my sperm, and the secretions of my knot changed your body chemistry, your physical makeup. I’m no doctor, so I can’t explain it to you exactly, but, in a way, you’re an extension of me now and live from my blood. It’s the same for all the mates.” Ian put a hand over his. “I told you everything would be different. I’m sorry, baby, but it was the only way to keep you alive. The Hunters put you in this position by coming after us so relentlessly.”
Logan was silent, staring broodingly down at his plate.
Ian looked up at him curiously. “What’s going through your head?”
“I was just thinking the only way to stay alive is to become a bloodsucker, who gets fucked by wolves, and wears girly outfits. Trying to decide if it’s worth it.”
Ian roared with laughter. “Not wolves—just one wolf. Me. Only me. And I’ll try very hard to make it worth it for you.”
Logan glanced up at him shyly, willing to admit one thing.“Maybe it does have some compensations at that.”
Ian reached across the table and put a hand to the back of Logan’s head, pulling him across for a kiss. Logan pulled violently away, his face flaming.
Ian let him go, looking puzzled. “What’s the matter? Did I hurt your neck?” “No,” he whispered. “It’s the kissing. In public.”
Ian glanced around them and back at Logan. “They all know we’re mates. They think nothing of it.”
Logan shook his head, his face still red. “We’re both men. Men don’t kiss like that.”
“Apparently they do. We do.”
Logan shot him a fierce glare. “You know what I mean, Ian. It embarrasses me.” At Ian’s look of indignation, Logan tentatively put out a hand to touch Ian’s on the table. “I’m sorry. It’s taking me some time to get used to thiseven if you people don’t think anything about it. I’ve always believed—been told…” He shook his head. “It’s just hard to switch my thinking around, and I’ve never felt like this for anyone, let alone another man.”
A little smile played around the corners of Ian’s mouth. “Like this?Like what, Logan?”
“Oh, I know, but I want to hear you say it.”
Logan flushed angrily again, pressing his lips tightly together.
“Say it. You know you want to.”
Logan went hot with embarrassment. The worst thing was the compulsion to do whatever Ian asked of him. He tried biting down on his tongue to keep from saying the words fighting to come out of his mouth.
“C’mon, Logan, say it.” Ian’s tone became a little less teasing and a little more commanding. Logan was done. He sagged in defeat and mumbled a few words so low he knew Ian couldn’t hear him.
“What was that, baby? Speak up a little louder.”
“I said—in love—damn it.” He looked up at Ian defiantly. “I’m in love with you. Are you satisfied?”
“Oh, I’m getting there, baby. Definitely getting there.I’m in love with you too. Now let’s go back upstairs where you can show me exactly how you feel.”
“His memories have pretty much come back to him.” The next day Ian faced Marco over breakfast early in the morning. Ian had left Logan sleeping soundly after he’d kept Logan up most of the night making love to him and feeding him blood. After a full day of the same with naps in between, Ian wanted him to sleep late and rest while he worked. He didn’t have anyone to stay with him while he was gone. He knew he was being overprotective, but he couldn’t help it.
Logan was becoming more Werekin all the time in a lot of ways, but not as submissive as he should be. Ian was anxious for his progress to continue. Logan still was resistant to the idea of making love to another man. Though he couldn’t resist Ian’s advances, he made none of his own. The night before, however, he’d cuddled up next to Ian before going to sleep. He’d told him he was beginning to remember everything from his life as a Hunter.