The silence of the room might have seemed ominous if I'd been thinking coherently. But Logan's hand on my throat, the chaste touch of his lips on mine, and his conflicting emotions, roared through my head, easily blocking out everything else. I stood there and glowed, smiling up at him when his voice finally broke my thoughts.
"What are you?" It was said simply, sincerely and without emotion, and I jerked back from his touch as if he'd slapped me.
"What... how could... you just..." I couldn't begin to hide the confusion on my face, and when he reached a hand toward me, I didn't understand his intentions, so I jerked back out of his reach, drawing my shields firmly around me. They couldn't fully protect me from him, but they slid a comforting layer of nothing between us and dampened the raging emotions we could both feel. "You offered me Sanctuary." My voice was terse now, strong with unspoken emotion. "Why would you complete the Ritual..." I gestured at the floor where I had kneeled.
"I didn't know Sanctuary was something tangible you would come to collect. It was a dream." His voice was very even but I could feel his confusion and exasperation. He truly didn't understand, but he tried again. "I saw it in a dream, this ritual. I don't know what it means to you."
"What it means to me? What it means to ME? Am I truly not a part of your heritage?" This earned surprised looks from every werewolf in the room, including Logan, and more than a little hostility from Jake, who was clearly his bodyguard. Logan was suspicious now and it was painful to watch no emotion across his face, yet feel everything he felt. I knew he felt my pain, but I wasn't sure he understood it was mine. And the minute I thought it, his answer was a soft caress in my mind.
"I know it's your pain. I don't know how I could have caused it."
I jerked away mentally and physically and found myself in the doorway to the room. "Don't." My voice was strong and while my emotions trembled, I appeared to be completely calm. "Don't reject me and then..."
"Reject you? I haven't rejected anything." I knew his frustration was growing into anger but outwardly he had complete control over his emotions. It's what made him a good alpha. I shot a look at Jordan, who immediately stepped forward and tried to intervene, and I sank into a huddle in the doorway. Jordan was trying to explain centuries of history as quickly as possible, and almost everyone was listening intently. Logan's emotions were overwhelming, the Ritual had cemented us together and if I could have drawn back, I'd have already done it. Distance was the only answer, but I couldn’t leave my son alone in a house of werewolves, regardless of Jordan’s ability to fend for himself. I backed slowly out of the room and turned to disappear down the hallway.
"Wait…" Logan’s call was soft and hesitant in my mind. He was so very unsure of the situation and as an alpha, that alone made him angry. "Please don’t leave."
"I’m not leaving. I need something to cook." What could I say? I was born to be domestic, I loved cooking. It always took my mind off the matter at hand. Logan had no answer to this.
“Where is she going?” “Is she leaving?” “What’s she doing?” The Pack threw questions at him as he watched my retreating form. I was retreating, as much as it rankled, it was an apt term for my actions.
“She’s not leaving. She’s cooking.” Logan’s answer was very matter of fact, almost sarcastic and almost incredulous.
Through Logan, I heard Jake’s angry outburst. “You’re letting a stranger wander through the house??” I couldn’t blame him, it was his job to keep them safe.
"Placate him. Send someone to watch me." At my request, Logan nodded at Kara, who was the only other woman present. Without question, she stood and followed me into the kitchen, where I was already searching through cabinets.
"She's not a stranger. She's..." I heard his answer, and his pause.
So I finished the sentence for him. "Your lupa."
"Your what??" Every werewolf in the room stared at him, and I felt Logan's sudden realization. I was mentioned in their history, it just didn't say I was an elf.
"His lupa. That's her place in the Pack." Jordan was still trying to explain. "She's the partner to an alpha. Are you not listening to me?" Through Logan, I heard Jordan bristle. “I won’t be happy if I have to repeat myself later.”
It took a conscious effort on his part, but Logan settled behind his desk and gave Jordan the floor.