Authors: Stormy Glenn
Tags: #Glenn, #Stormy
“I agree, and I will help in any way that I can.”
“Against your own father? I have doubts about that after what you just said to Thomas about not coming between us.”
“My father hates me. He always has. The only time he’s ever spent any time with me was the summer I turned fifteen and that was just because I was sick and in the hospital. After that, except when he wants something from me, I never even hear from my father.” Elliot drew in a deep breath when he realized he had used up all of the air in his lungs then continued. “If you love Tommy like you say you do, and I believe you do, then I want Tommy to have that.”
Elliot felt Tommy’s hand reach back and give his hands a little squeeze. He knew Tommy was trying to reassure him and felt grateful for the small gesture. Elliot squeezed back then looked at Daniel again.
“I’ll do anything to keep Tommy safe.”
* * * *
As much as he meant the words, Elliot didn’t expect to have to put them to the test so soon. He’d no more said the words than Tommy and his father rushed him out of the house. They were on their way to Tommy’s brother, the sheriff's house.
That in itself gave Elliot plenty to worry about. The last, and only time, he met the sheriff, the man had come to arrest Tommy. Elliot didn’t want to see it happen again. Avoiding the man would have been his game plan, but now they were driving right to the man’s house.
Now, Elliot not only had to worry about Daniel Nash but his wife and son too. He just knew someone was going to say something that convinced Tommy that Elliot wasn’t worth the risk and then the man would leave him.
Elliot felt it deep in his soul. He was heading for his doom and there was nothing he could do to prevent it. Elliot felt like crying, but he knew that wouldn’t do him any good. If Philip Spencer taught him anything, he taught Elliot that tears got him nowhere.
Elliot just bit his lip and turned his head toward the window, pretending to watch the night sky pass him by. He could feel the tenseness in Tommy’s body as the man sat next to him and knew he dreaded the upcoming confrontation as much as Elliot did, just for different reasons.
“How are you doing there, pretty baby?”
Elliot plastered a smile and his face and turned to look at Tommy. “I’m okay. A little nervous I guess. It’s natural to feel nervous, isn’t it? I mean, it’s not like this is a usual situation or anything, right?”
“It’ll be fine, you’ll see. Once you get to know them, my family is not a bad lot. They just don’t tend to let a lot of outsiders into their circle for obvious reasons.”
Elliot nodded, inwardly cringing at Tommy calling him an outsider.
“Once they get to know you, though, they will welcome you with open arms, especially my mother. I think she will adore you.”
“Yeah?” Elliot asked, hoping he sounded somewhat normal, and if he didn’t, that Tommy would assume it was nerves. “Tell me about her. What’s she like?”
“She can be a little intense at times, but what mother isn’t?” Tommy chuckled.
“I don’t know. I never really knew my mother.”
“You said that before. How did she die?”
“I don’t know, really, I think she got sick or something. My father refuses to discuss her with me. Every time I ask, he gets really angry so after awhile I just stopped asking.” Elliot shrugged. “It seemed easier that way.”
“I’m sorry, Elliot.”
“It happened a long time ago.”
“That still doesn’t make any easier for you.”
“No, I guess not.”
“Well, you just wait until my mother finds out. She’ll adopt you. She’s already adopted Nate and told my brother Joe if he ever breaks up with Nate, she’s kicking his ass to the curb and keeping Nate.”
“Wait, I thought you mated for life?”
Tommy chuckled and patted Elliot’s leg. “We do, pretty baby. I think she was just letting Joe know where he stood. She really likes Nate.”
“Just because she likes Nate doesn’t mean she’s going to like me, Tommy.”
“You can’t know that.”
“My mother is one of the sweetest, kindest women I know, Elliot. She’d do anything for anyone. She’s going to take one look at you and want to cuddle you all up.”
“If she’s so sweet, then how did she end up with your father? It would seem to me that he would eat her alive.”
“Oh, don’t let that sweetness fool you. My mother has a backbone of steel. I’ve seen alphas of other packs quake in their boots when she gets mad. I think even my father is afraid of her and he adores the woman.”
“She sounds like a formidable woman.”
“And you love her a lot, don’t you?”
“Yeah, I do.”
Elliot nodded and went back to watching the night pass by. He knew now more than ever that he couldn’t come between Tommy and his family. Despite the disagreement Tommy was currently having with his father, he loved him, and the rest of his family.
Elliot couldn’t take Tommy away from that. Tommy would only regret it in the future, and Elliot didn’t know if he could survive having Tommy regret being with him. There had to be some sort of compromise that they could come to, something.
“Tommy, what if I was to get an apartment somewhere and you came to see me whenever you wanted to? Would that make your father happy? I could live there and my father would never need to know about you or your family.”
“I’m just thinking. If I were to get an apartment somewhere, like in the next town over or something, away from your family. You could come and see me as often as you wanted to and my father never has to know about you.”
“Elliot, are you ashamed of me?”
“God, no!” Elliot shouted then quickly pressed his lips together when he realized he had yelled at Tommy. He looked down at his hands, wringing them together in his lap. “No, of course not. I just don’t want to cause trouble for you or your family.”
“Elliot, there may be some problems with your father, but we’ll work them out. As soon as my family realizes that I am not going to give you up, they will come around. If they don’t, well then, we’ll find somewhere else to live.”
“You’re really going to keep me?” That stunned Elliot more than Tommy shifting into a wolf. Tommy really seemed to want him and Elliot didn’t understand that. No one had ever wanted to keep him, not for the long haul anyway.
“I’m keeping you, Elliot, and that’s a promise.”
Elliot couldn’t have prevented the smile that came over his face if his feet were on fire. A spark inside of Elliot ignited and started to burn brighter and brighter as Tommy smiled at him. Tommy was going to keep him. Elliot was elated.
“I’d like that,” Elliot said. “I’d like that a lot.”
“Yeah?” Tommy asked. “Me too, pretty baby, me too.”
“And the whole furry thing, it’s not a problem unless you shed on the furniture, but I guess I could just buy a really strong vacuum cleaner or maybe get leather furniture like you have.” Elliot snapped his fingers. “That’s why you have leather furniture, isn’t it? So you don’t shed all over the place. But what do you do in the bedroom? I mean, like do you get the sheets all dirty and stuff or—”
Tommy’s laughter shut Elliot’s words off. “You’re a hoot, Elliot. Yes, I shed, but I try not to shed in the house. I prefer to do the furry stuff outside as much as possible. And no, I don’t eat dog food. I eat regular food just like you do.”
Elliot felt his face flush. He had been going to ask exactly that. “I guess I won’t be needing the flea powder then, huh?”
“No, I prefer just a straight shower, thank you very much.”
“Need someone to scrub your back?” Elliot winked at Tommy. “And maybe your front?”
“Sweet mercy, you’re gonna kill me, Elliot,” Tommy groaned. Elliot’s eyes widened when Tommy reached down and thumped the bulge in his jeans a couple of times.
“Hey,” Elliot said loudly as he grabbed Tommy’s hand, “don’t do that. I plan on using that later.”
“Elliot, if I don’t do that, we’re going to have problems. We’re here and I don’t want to walk into my brother’s house with a hard on.”
Elliot looked out the front window and swallowed past the sudden lump in his throat as he watched Tommy pull into a driveway. “We’re here? Already?”
“Elliot, it will be okay.”
“You’re not the human walking into a pack of wolves that don’t really want you here. Speak for yourself.”
Tommy chuckled, much to Elliot’s dismay, but he did reach over and take his hand. “It will be fine, pretty baby. Just stay next to me and I promise to bite anyone that comes even close to you.”
“Yeah?” Tommy snapped his teeth together, which Elliot found absolutely hilarious. He started laughing, leaning his head against Tommy’s arm. His laughter started to fade when he felt Tommy kiss the top of his head.
“Let’s go in and deal with the pack, and this business with your father, and then I’ll take you home and fuck you into the wall like I said I would.”
“Promise?” Elliot raised his head to look at Tommy, pleading with his eyes. He so wanted to be fucked into the wall by Tommy. He’d been thinking of little else since he met the man, well, except this whole wolf shifting thing and the animosity with Tommy’s family.
Tommy smiled. “Promise, pretty baby.”
Elliot nodded and climbed out of the car. He hurried around the front and grabbed the hand Tommy held out to him. As they started for the house, Elliot wrapped his free hand around his waist, which felt like it was doing loops, especially when he saw Daniel waiting for them on the front porch.
“Dad,” Tommy simply said as he nodded.
“Thomas,” Daniel replied, giving him a small nod. “Your mother will be here soon as well as your brother, James, and his mate. I also expect Ben and Reece will also be joining us at some point.”
Tommy nodded again. Elliot was just confused. He didn’t know who these people were and he didn’t understand what they had to do with the current situation. He thought they were going to the sheriff’s house to discuss his father.
Elliot followed Tommy and Daniel into the house, noting its welcoming feel the moment he stepped inside. Elliot shivered as a strange sensation ran up his spine. It wasn’t a bad sensation, really, but Elliot couldn’t quite understand what was causing it. He chalked it up to being in an unknown place in a truly strange situation and plastered a smile on his face when two strange men walked into the room.
“Elliot, you remember my brother, Joe?”
“This is Nate, Joe’s mate.” Tommy gestured to the smaller of the two men. “Nate, this is Elliot, my mate.”
“Oh, Tommy, you found your mate.”
Elliot blinked. If he didn’t know better, he would swear the man was bouncing in place. He looked excited, more so than Elliot, but at least the grin on his face seemed real and not a pleasantry.
“Hello,” Elliot said, holding out his hand. He slowly let it drop back to his side and stepped closer to Tommy when Nate’s smile faded and the man didn’t reach for his hand.
“Elliot, Nate doesn’t shake people’s hands,” Tommy said. “He doesn’t like touching other people except for my brother, Joe.”
“Oh.” Elliot wondered if it was him or if Nate was that way with all people. It was probably him.
“I’m sorry, Elliot,” Nate said. “It’s just hard for me to touch other people.”
“No, that’s okay.” Elliot smiled for the man’s benefit. “I understand.”
He didn’t really, but Elliot wasn’t going to make waves. He’d made enough already. If he wanted Tommy’s family to accept him, Elliot knew he’d have to toe the line. That was something he learned very early on in life. People’s acceptance came at a price, and it usually meant he had to be who they wanted and act the way they expected. Elliot was a master at pretending.
“Why don’t we all sit down so we can talk,” Joe said. “Dad filled me in a little when he called and said you were coming over, but I’m sure you have more you can tell us.”
Elliot followed Tommy over to the couch and sat down as close to him as he could get while not actually sitting in the man’s lap. He felt a little better when Tommy’s arms settled around his shoulders.
“Elliot is my mate,” Tommy began as soon as every was seated. “I explained to him about the pack and even shifted for him. He’s accepted me and that should be the end of it. However, Dad feels that Elliot’s father could be a problem.”
“I believe he’s right, Tommy. I did a little research after meeting Elliot and his father is not one to be messed with.” Joe’s face was grim as he glanced over at Elliot. “I don’t know how much you know about your father’s business practices, but they are not always above board.”
“I don’t know anything about how my father conducts his business, but I do know he will do anything to get what he wants. Making the money is less important to him than how he makes it.” Elliot carefully looked at everyone sitting there, meeting the eyes of each of them. “For my father, it’s all about the hunt. I’m sure you all can appreciate that.”
“Your father has his fingers in some pretty shady cookie jars.”
Elliot’s felt his eyebrows shoot up. “Excuse me?”