Avelyn was alone with the werewolf. She opened her mouth to say something, but he cut her off.
“You don’t get to speak, Avelyn,” he stopped her in a dead serious tone.
Avelyn was taken aback, not sure if it was because of his words or the way he had spoken them.
Max took a couple of steps towards her, his hands still behind his back, his face straight and unforgiving.
“You lost any privilege to say a word, or make any kind of decision when you decided to run away in the middle of the night. Tell me, how did you even get that far?”
Something told Avelyn that his attitude and posture should have made her shrink in fear and defeat, but everything about him only managed to make her angrier and more eager to punch him, or destroy something. She clenched her fists, positive she could have broken all the furniture in the office in a fit of anger.
“That is none of your business. Nothing I do is any of your business.”
“But it is, you see? You’re my bride and I will not tolerate this kind of behavior.”
“Your bride?” Avelyn raised her voice, then laughed in disbelief. “Your bride? I’m not your bride. I didn’t agree to anything. You just did exactly what your filthy species does best: you stole something, someone, that didn’t belong to you. What? Do you expect me to come with you voluntarily and turn into some kind of obedient wife? You’re delusional!”
Max looked away for a second, struggling to compose himself. He realized then that the woman before him could bring out the worst in him. She could bring the beast to the surface.
“Enough! You are coming with me and it is not up for discussion. I don’t care what you think or want.” His stomach churned when the last words rolled down his tongue. They tasted bitter. “Listen carefully, Avelyn: what you did last night will not happen again. Not if you don’t want to suffer dire consequences.”
“What will you do?” There was mean sarcasm in her voice. “Make your wolves guard me around the clock? Will you tie me up to your bed if I try to run away? Lock me up in those dungeons people keep talking about?” She stepped closer to him, entering his personal space. “What will you do, you big bad wolf?” She saw him cringe at her words. She knew she was pushing it too far and that she might regret it, but she didn’t think he had it in him to actually hit her. Maybe, somewhere deep down, she wanted him to hit her, so she would have an even stronger reason to despise him. “I listened to you, now you listen to me: you will never have me. Ever.” She stepped back, satisfied by the effect her words seemed to have on him.
Max breathed evenly for a couple of seconds, wondering for the thousandth time in the past 24 hours if he hadn’t made the biggest mistake of his life. The woman standing in front of him was fierce and defiant. He was impressed by how well the blue jeans she was wearing hugged her thighs and hips, and how the loose sky-blue pullover hung on her chest, making her breasts look bigger and fuller. Her reddish blond hair was tied in a high ponytail, a few curls framing her beautiful face. There were dark shadows under her eyes, proof that she hadn’t slept in more than 24 hours. Looking at her, he had to admit that she might have been a mistake, but a sweet one. He couldn’t imagine himself leaving the UK without this woman by his side, and living his life without seeing her again. The torture of keeping her prisoner in the Schloss was far easier to endure than the torture of living without her.
“I do hope you’ll change your opinion one day. Caleb will accompany you to your room and help you carry your luggage. I’ll be waiting at the gate.”