Chapter 3 University

3352 Words
Kiara opened her eyes to the light blue hue trickling in through the tent crevasses. Her body was exhausted, having very little sleep throughout the night. She turned her head to look at Elijah’s sleeping face. His arm was draped over her, keeping her bare body warm. For a moment she just admired his face. The slight stubble of hair that and his lips that tasted every inch of her body last night. The memory made her feel excited. The connection between them was unexplainable. She hoped that she would have something like that with her mate. There was a strange contentment she felt being next to him. Which was her cue to get out of there. She didn’t need to form any dumb lingering attachments. It was just s*x. That’s it, it didn’t mean anything else. She didn’t want things to be awkward when he woke up. A pat on the as.s and thanks for last night. No, she needed to maintain at least some level of dignity. She gently lifted his arm and slid away, resting it back down. He made a throaty noise but stayed asleep. She looked around and grabbed her belongings quickly, sliding back into her dress. She stopped and looked at Elijah. For some reason, she had this longing like she didn’t want to leave him. It was idiotic. She just had her heart shattered and this was just an escape. There was no commitment to each other, and Elijah was well experienced. She had small flashes of the things he said to her last night. Surely those were just things he was saying at the moment. There was no way he was serious. It was probably his routine when he slept with women. She smiled and shook her head. Of course, that was all it was. She finally tore her gaze from him and walked away. She was heading to Alpha Island University today and she needed to get cleaned up. She walked out of the tent and headed towards the lodging. She left the magic barrier and could feel her beast inside of her stir. Even her beast felt content, though there was a sense of longing to go back to Elijah. She glanced up to see Kayden standing there with his arms folded over his chest. He looked at her with a disapproving gaze and shook his head. “Seriously Kiara.” Kiara snorted and glared at her brother. “It’s my business Kay! Stay out of it.” “I’m just looking out for you. Gods know you need it and right now we have more pressing things to concern ourselves with.” “Then don’t Kay.” Kiara looked at his startled face and she sighed and shrugged her shoulders. “Don’t look after me anymore. I don’t know who I am Kay. I don’t know myself or what I want—” “That’s bull.shit of course you do. You are letting your head get like this because of a loser like Jhett?!” “NO! It was an eye opener. There has never been a time I haven’t had you there to look out for me. I’ve become dependent on it. I think we both have. We are so used to having the other there. But you know… we won’t always have each other. One day you’ll take a mate and so will I. I think we both need time to discover ourselves.” “Don’t project your emotions on me Kiara. I know who I am. I am the general of the lycan army and I am proud of that.” Kayden watched as Kiara smiled and nodded her head. “I know Kayden, but I don’t know if that’s for me. Look… we both start classes today at the university. No one knows us there. We are taking different classes. Let’s just try to do our own thing.” Kiara listened as Kayden scoffed. “So what is this? You want me to pretend not to know you? What a childish—” “You don’t have to pretend not to know me, but maybe pretend I am not there. Don’t look for me. Don’t hover over me. I don’t need your protection. I can nod, wave, smile when I see you in the halls hall, but let’s have some space.” She could see he was ready to object and quickly added, “please Kay… I need this. I love you Kay, but I need to figure out... myself.” “I’m still your brother Kiara, whether you need protection or not. What if you need me?” Kayden knew his sister was wounded and he was afraid she was trying to isolate herself. If this is what she really needed, he would do this for her. But he would always keep an eye out for her. “If I need you, I will mind link you. I promise if I need anything I will reach out to you and if you really need me, you can reach out to me.” Kiara watched an arrogant smirk crawl over her brother’s face. Of course, he didn’t think he could ever need her help. “Thanks Kiara, but I am capable on my own.” Kayden chuckled and Kiara rolled her eyes at him. “One day, Kayden, there is going to be a woman out there that will bring you to your knees. And you are going to realize that the big bad general actually does need someone.” Kiara listened as Kayden laughed, shaking his head. “Actually, there is something I need… I need you to get a shower. You reek.” Kayden grinned, holding his hand over his nose. “And hurry up, the helicopter will be here any minute.” “Well then, I do need you to bring me fresh clothes when they get here. I can’t arrive at the university wearing this.” Kiara hurried off to take a quick shower. She loved Kayden to death, but she was certain this was good for them both. Kayden was always looking after her and he needed a break from that too. He needed to know she would be okay on her own… and she needed to know that too. Kiara showered, changed, and made her way out to the helicopter. Her brother Kayden was giving orders to their next in charge before he got in the helicopter too. “That took you long enough.” Kayden snorted in agitation. “It’s our first day. I didn’t want to look like I had just rolled out of bed.” Kiara leaned back in her seat and closed her eyes, falling asleep almost instantly. She was pretty worn out from last night. It felt like she only closed her eyes for a second when she heard her brother's voice. “We are here. Don’t forget your bracelet.” Kayden said, handing the leather strap, with a charm on it, over to his sister. It was the band they needed to wear so they could pass through the barrier at the university without setting the alarm off. Kiara tied the bracelet on and rolled her shoulders back to stretch them out. She turned to look back at her bags and Kayden shook his head. “They’ll bring them for us so don’t worry about them. Here is our paperwork. I may have to leave from time to time to follow leads… if there is anything noteworthy, I’ll let you know.” “Thanks Kay.” “Kiara.” Kayden watched as his sister looked over at him. “Just remember I am still around.” She nodded her head and smiled. “I know. Come on let’s go.” Her brother hopped out of the helicopter, and she followed suit. They both walked together up the path until they reached a set of dark metal gates. Beyond them, they could see students and could hear their voices. They both stepped through the gates and into the barrier. Kiara looked around at all the happy and excited faces. It had a very uplifting atmosphere and she sighed, taking a deep breath in. This was exactly the change of scenery she needed. She was just going to be a regular student. “Kiara.” A low husky voice called out as an arm grabbed her by the waist, spinning her around. His face was close, too close, and instantly covered hers. His hot lips pressed against hers as his tongue possessively invaded her mouth. The kiss lingered one second, two seconds, three seconds. Then she pushed back on him fiercely as she gaped at him in shock. “Elijah?! What the hell are you doing here? And what are you doing?” Kiara hissed as she watched an amused grin spread over his lips. She glances around to see a couple of the other students smiling at them. They probably thought they were a couple who just reconnected. “I’m attending school obviously and…” He looked her over, “I thought we would both enjoy that.” Kiara’s mouth gaped open in shock, but it was the murderous growl and blur in front of her that stunned her next. “How dare you—” Kayden growled as Kiara grabbed onto his arm, tugging him back. “Kay, I’ve got this. I can handle it myself. Remember what we talked about.” She listened to her brother growl. “You don’t need to protect me.” “Yeah, I’ll protect her.” Elijah said in an arrogant tone. Kiara turned and shot him a look. She would deal with him afterwards. She looked back at her brother, who sighed angrily. “Alright…” He finally said and looked at his sister. “Have a good school year… and take care of yourself.” Kayden smiled and patted his sister’s head. He wanted to teach the smug bear a lesson, but he was certain another opportunity would arise. “Love you, Kay. If you need me, I’ll come and protect you.” Kiara teased as her brother backed away. He gave Elijah one more murderous glance before he walked away. “So, what is all that about?” Elijah asked, and Kiara sighed. “I just need space. And speaking of space…” Kiara glared at him. “What the hell?!” Elijah stepped closer to her and grinned. “You took off before we could talk. Luckily, my brother Brock informed me you would be attending school here. So, he used his connections and now I am enrolled too.” Kiara’s mouth gaped open. “I’m sorry… what? You came here because I am here?” “Maybe you didn’t hear me last night—” “You can’t be serious.” “Last night was a lot of fun and—” “Of course it was fun, Eli, we had sex.” Kiara listened as he chuckled. “You know what I mean. I’ve had s*x before but not like that. There was a connection between us. Don’t tell me you didn’t feel it. You didn’t think I was just saying that stuff about keeping you casually… did you? I wasn’t just saying what I thought you wanted to hear. I’m not like that, Kiara. I meant it.” Eli tilted his head and looked into her eyes. What was he saying? That now he wanted them in a committed relationship? She felt a sense of panic. She was still reeling from the pain from Jhett. She couldn’t experience that level of hurt again. She shook her head and looked up at him, “Oh come on Eli—” “I liked the way you were saying my name last night.” He said in a low raspy tone as he stepped forward. “Last night was a one-time thing for fun. That’s it.” Kiara held up her hand to try to ward off his advances. He stepped into her hand, allowing her to feel his hard torso. She took in a shuddering breath as her fingers pressed into him. No, this wasn’t a good idea. She wasn’t going to do this. “Kiara let’s date. I want to get to know you better besides just intimately. Something about you stirs my beast and I can’t just let you go.” “It sounds to me like you are desperate for a woman,” Kiara said and listened to his dark chuckle. “Don’t kid yourself.” Kiara fell silent and had to admit that he could have any woman whenever he wanted. So why her? She wasn’t ready for a relationship right now. She just came out of one. She understood what he was talking about. There was some fiery chemistry between them for some unknown reason. She could feel his chest rising and falling beneath her fingertips. She didn’t mean to, but her thoughts went back to last night and how his body felt. She had to shake the memory away. “I don’t want a relationship right now.” Kiara whispered out in a wounded breath. “With me? Or with anyone?” Elijah asked as he studied her face. He noticed the pained expression in her eyes. This only made him want to protect her more. Something had hurt her… his precious Kiara. “With anyone.” “Are you okay?” Elijah’s voice softened as he reached out, tilting her chin up so he could look at her. “Yeah, I’m fine.” Kiara gave him a weak smile. The pain was still raw, but she was fine. It was her trust that took a major hit. She trusted Jhett and he destroyed it in an instant. “Kiara, I’m not about to let another man move in on my territory. I meant what I said last night. You are the one I have been waiting for. I know we belong together. So, before you unleash upon me that fiery temper, how about we talk? I can buy you a drink? There is a coffee shop here on campus.” “As friends?” Elijah practically snorted. “Do you really think we can just be friends?” “We are going to have to.” Kiara listened as he sighed and shook his head. “Fine. For now, friends. But baby… think about it and don’t take too long. We are wasting a lot of time.” Elijah corralled her next to his side and with gentle pressure on her back guided her down another path. He made sure to give any males looking at Kiara a murderous glare. This was going to be a challenge. Kiara was gorgeous. And there was a lot of males here who would notice her. But he wasn’t about to allow anyone else to have her. She called to him, and he couldn’t let it go. “I love your scent. I am always going to think of you when I smell vanilla.” Elijah listened as Kiara clicked her tongue. “It’s Ponderosa Pine not vanilla.” She listened as he chuckled as his fingers lightly moved over her back. She didn’t know why she allowed his hand there, but she did. “It’s vanilla…” He stopped for a moment and turned to look at her. “Kiara… when I woke up and you were gone… I panicked. I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to find you again. That’s how strong I feel about us. I felt desperate to find you. I went to the fairy princess and my brother to take me to the lycan kingdom. When they told me you were attending the university, I knew I had to as well. I need to be where you are.” He sighed and ran his hand through his hair. “I don’t know what has wounded you, but I don’t say these things casually. This isn’t a game for me, Kiara. I want you. I know you felt it too… give it a chance.” Kiara’s lips parted as she took in a shallow breath. She glanced down and shook her head. “I’m sorry. I just…” She knew she needed to level with him. She didn’t need to spill everything, but he needed to know why a relationship wasn’t something she was ready for. “The wound is too fresh. It just happened. My boyfriend for the past year left me for his fated mate. We already had the conversation about fated mates. He said he would reject her if he ever found her. I…” She shook her head. “Look, it doesn’t matter. I don’t want to talk about it. I just want to forget—” “You can’t, Kiara. You can’t bury a wound like that. It doesn’t work that way. It will eventually fester to the surface, and I won’t let that type of poison consume you. I understand… you need some time. But keep me close… and when you are ready… Kiara, I am going to be honest with you. I’m not going to let another male near you.” “Now wait a minute! You don’t have some claim on me because we had s*x last night!” Kiara glared at him. He tilted his head and quirked his brows at her. “It wasn’t just s*x. You and I both know it. It was more than that.” “It was the alcohol buzz.” “I wasn’t buzzed…” “Well, what else could it be? It’s not like we are mates.” “My brother Brock and his fiancé Shawna are not fated mates. But there is an undeniable connection between them.” “And after one night you think you have this with me?” “I don’t know Kiara, but I want to find out. I don’t want to miss out on something great.” He smiled at her and lifted his hand to brush over her cheek. “I understand you need some time. That’s okay, I know you are worth waiting for. When you are ready, I want us to start dating. Let’s just see where it goes.” Kiara didn’t know how to answer him. Elijah was full of himself and was brimming with confidence. She never went for guys like that where their ego’s left her crowded out. But after the night they spent together… something was different. She wasn’t ready to explore why it was different. Or why, when she saw him again today, she felt… relieved. It was as if her beast calmed down in his presence. She couldn’t analyze any of that right now. She shook her head and continued walking down the path. Elijah was following close beside her and she could feel his eyes burning into her. Kiara looked up as they approached the coffee shop. She almost laughed as she noticed the person standing there. The campus was huge but somehow, she managed to go to the one place her brother was also. He was standing there looking agitated and there was a woman with purple strands in her hair next to him who didn’t look happy either. She nodded her head at her brother, who then glared over at Elijah. There was a sign on the door showing that it was still closed but the time indicated they should be open. She was about to turn and leave when she heard the sound of running. “Sorry about that!” “Sorry we are late!” Kiara turned her head and gasped. The women ran past her and opened the door to The Jelly Bean. She looked up at Kayden and then to Elijah. It was Ava, the lycan princess and Skylar, the dragon princess. The girls ran straight past them. Ava didn’t even spare her a glance and they were good friends. It was like she didn’t know her. Kayden, call Dylan! Note: Join Alpha Island Arc group.
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