Turk was relieved and grateful for finally having found his mate.

When first he was brought forward and nothing happened, he wanted to find somewhere far away and begin tearing down trees and roaring his anger and pain to the world. But Owain had told him to wait, that maybe a female would come up and something would spark. Turk was glad he stayed. Mazelina was everything he had hoped for.

Now they just had to get through introductions…

”Lina, ” he purred into her ear.

Her eyes fluttered up to his with some surprise, but also joy at having a nickname. ”What? ” she asked, finally finding her voice.

He smirked. ”Are you back to normal? ”

She blinked up at him. Her eyes scanned his face for something he couldn decipher. Then she asked, ”Where are we going? ”

”The river. I want to talk to you. ”

To his delight, she didn ask any more questions, just rested her head on his chest and closed her eyes.

After a five-minute walk, the river came into sight, roaring furiously down its winding path. Turk knelt and set Mazelina on the ground gently, not wanting her hurt in any way. She opened her eyes as he sat next to her, a safe distance away in case the news of who he was frightened her.

She began to sense something was wrong and stiffened. ”What are we talking about? ”

”Do you know who I am? ” he asked, holding his breath.

”No. Should I? ”

Jaw clenching, he said, ”I want you to promise to hear me out before you make any assumptions. I want you to give me a chance to show you who I really am. ”

She narrowed her brows at him. ”Who are you? ”

”The Alpha of Moonvalley Pack. ”

Her mouth formed an o as she stared at him. Then she tilted her head questioningly. ”Was all that talk just a ploy of some kind? Warm me up to you because you knew how Id react? ”

”What? ” he hissed.

She gave a harsh laugh. ”Let me tell you, you did a great job! Better than any other male I have met! ” She shook her head. ”I can believe I let you lure me in! ”

”What are you talking about! ” he demanded.

She stared at him. ”Were you planning on killing me? ”

”Mazelina! Listen to me! ” He stood and held out his hands imploringly. ”I didn do all those things. Im not who everyone thinks! ”

She glared. ”Who else could it have been? Was it your twin? ”

”Yes! ” he said truthfully. She blinked. ”I have a twin brother. He goes around terrorizing wolves with my name. He wants what I have and would love to see me killed for everything hes done. ”

Mazelina was very still, eyes wide, mouth agape.

”Please, let me show you who I am. Let me convince you it was not me who could have done all those things. ”

”How come no one knows you have a brother? ” she asks softly.

”Because we were never out and about as children. It wasn until our father died when we began to see others. It wasn until I became alpha that my brother began his attacks, pretending to be me. ”

She looked away, eyes filled with tears. Turk wanted to comfort her but knew she had to give permission first. He didn like that she was hurt. He didn like that this information made her put distance between them. He didn like the fact that she didn trust him.

”Will I get to meet your brother? Will I get to see what you say is true? ”

Turk put a fist to his heart. ”I swear it. ”

She pulled in a deep breath. ”Im taking a chance, you know. I better not regret this. ”

Turk smiled. ”Does this mean youll let me show you who I really am? ”

”Is it how you have been? ” she asked, shyly now.

Turk shrugged. ”Generally, no. I don flirt with females. But I like you and you responded in kind. ”

She gave a small smile. ”What are you usually like? ”

”Quiet and reserved, ” he said honestly. ”I don like crowds that much and I don like most females. ”

This made her curious because she stepped forward with narrowed eyes. ”How come? ”

He held out his hand. ”Would you believe me if I told you they always want something from me that I am never willing to share? ”

”You mean sex? ”

”Yes. ”

Slowly, she took his hand as she asked, ”Why do you like me then? ”

”You are different. ”

”How? ”

”You didn want sex. ” She opened her mouth to say something, but Turk held up a finger. ”Just because you
e attracted to me does not mean you want sex. ”

Mazelina looked away as he began to lead her back to her pack. She said, ”You said I reacted to you. ”

Turk gave a moment to think, then stopped them and turned to her. ”You reacted in a way a woman does when she has no idea what is going on, but still likes what she sees. You didn want me to notice how you felt and were embarrassed when I did. Most females I meet understand their bodies and outwardly give signs of what they want. ” He paused. ”Unfortunately, it is something youll have to see often. ”

”Do you react towards them? ”

He stared into her eyes. ”Not in a good way. ”

Her body relaxed as he began to lead her again. In his hand, hers was soft and small and warm. She kept a firm grip on him, but not enough for him to think she was uncomfortable.

”Mazelina! ” a voice called from ahead.

Now, she did stiffen. Turk could see something darken her eyes with sadness. She glanced from him to where the voice had come from. ”Whats wrong? ”

”Its Josiah, ” she said, taking a step back. ”I don want to see him. ”

Turk didn ask questions, just gathered her in his arms, whispering, ”Hold on. ”

She wrapped both of her arms around his neck and hid her face in his chest. One hand around her waist, he leaped into the air and caught a tree limb with the other hand. Her feet locked together around his back, letting him know she was still holding on. Carefully, he let go of her. She tightened her grip as his arm slipped away, but she didn panic. Feeling confident, Turk took them high into the trees, finding a little nook where he gently set her down in. She opened her eyes and looked around.

Purple eyes went wide as she gazed about. When she looked at him, he saw awe and joy on her face. ”You
e like a cat! ” she exclaimed.

He scowled. ”Im not a cat! ”

She grinned at his comment then said, ”How high are we? ”

”Nearly to the top of the tree. We
e so far up, no one down below can see us. ”

”Really? ”

”Yes. ”

Mazelina looked around. Turk gazed at her, happy to know she felt safe so far from the ground, trusting him. Everything around them seemed to draw her attention from the colors of the leaves to the chirping birds and scuttling squirrels. When she finally looked at him, a warm smile was on her face. ”Its beautiful up here! ”

”Im glad. ” He wrapped his arms around her again and pulled her close. ”Because it is way up here where I like to be. ”

”Are you sure you
e not a cat? ”

He gave a low growl that made her laugh as she held onto him. He climbed back down, then they went toward the smell of food and fires.

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