He felt her distress rise, could feel her need for disbelief, and yet there was a small spark of…relief? Didn’t see that one coming, Fane thought as he closed his eyes and focused on her, listening to her mind come to terms with this revelation.
Well, there's the clincher, Jacque thought. I mean, really. If you’re going to hear a voice, what are the chances it would have a Romanian accent? To Fane’s and evidently her surprise, she started to laugh, not just a giggle but a full-out, body shaking laugh. For some reason unbeknownst to Fane, it just suddenly struck her as funny. Of course she now knew it wasn’t just a voice, it was Fane. After all she didn’t know any other Romanians, and just to put the nail in the proverbial coffin, she asked in a soft, almost shy voice,“Fane?”
His heart stuttered at the sound of his name. Even though it wasn’t from her lips, she'd said it and it sounded so good coming from her. A small amount of triumph settled over him and his wolf growled in contentment knowing his mate was thinking of him. He answered her honestly, wanting her to believe him without a doubt.
“Da, meu inimă. It is I.”
Fane held his breath, waiting for her response, scared that she would continue to try and pass this off as her lack of sanity. What would he do if she refused to take her place at his side? He hadn’t even considered the idea of her not accepting him. He growled in response at the thought. Mates were bound to each other; there would never be another for either one of them. To Fane’s knowledge there had never been one who had rejected their mate. It would be a devastating action for both and neither would ever be whole again.
That just wasn’t acceptable, he decided. He would drag her back to Romania with him where she belonged, if it came to that.
Right, Fane, he told himself. That would really earn her trust. You can’t just hit her over the head and drag her around by her hair, even though that would actually be the easier road. No, he was going to have to do this the honorable way and court her. Jacque deserved that, after all. She was his Luna, and would be Queen of the Canis lupus one day – she deserved his unwavering love and devotion. And she would get nothing less.
He continued to wait for her response. He thought about reaching out to her to find out what she was thinking, but up til now he had been giving her privacy, only intruding into her thoughts when he spoke to her. It would be a violation to listen to her when she didn’t know that he could do so any time – he could also “see” the things she thought in her head. And as a gentleman he would not violate his Luna’s privacy, mate or not.
Fane decided to let her be for now. She needed time to process the fact that the guy she met only briefly was somehow able to talk to her through her thoughts. That was a lot to absorb. He would wait to see if she would seek him out. He only hoped that he and his wolf would be patient. The mate bond called to him and demanded an answer.
Jacque’s eyes snapped open at the revelation that was causing her to hyperventilate. Fane! The voice was Fane! Once he had answered her, she believed without a doubt that she wasn’t just hearing a voice made up by her subconscious. It was someone real, tangible, and...well, hot! Not that him being hot is important, Jacque thought to herself. But it seriously didn’t hurt.
No longer able to lie still, Jacque got up and went over to her window. She opened the blinds and looked across the street at the Henrys' house, wondering what Fane was doing. Wondering if he was wondering about her. Oh, good grief, she told herself. You just met him, you don’t even know him, and you’re wondering if he's thinking about you? Do yourself a favor - get a Kit Kat and give yourself a break.
She closed the blinds and leaned back against the wall, shutting her eyes. After taking a deep breath, she decided she needed to do something to keep herself occupied until Sally and Jen came back over. There was a pile of dirty clothes on the floor next to her closet, she grabbed the empty laundry basket, filled it, and carried it downstairs to the laundry room. Still not operating on all four cylinders, she didn’t even bother to sort them out, she just threw her whites and colors together and tossed some detergent on top of them. She shut the washer lid and headed back into the living room.
“Okay,” she said out loud. “What next?” She turned in a complete circle, letting her eyes roam over the room. The only thing she could see was that the living room needed to be dusted. She went into the kitchen and got supplies from under the kitchen sink and headed back to the living room. Trying to drag things out, she sprayed each item and carefully wiped them with the dusting cloth. By the time she was done, Jacque was sure the living room had never been so clean.
She put the dust cloth and spray away and then her clothes were ready to go into the dryer.
When she finally looked at the clock, she moaned as she realized it had only been an hour since she'd come downstairs. What was she going to do now? I could go over to the Henrys' and see if they were done with mom’s dishes, she told herself. Yeah, Sherlock, that wouldn’t be obvious at all.
Jacque headed back up to her room, wracking her brain for things she could do to keep her mind off you-know-who, at least until Sally and Jen were back. When she shut her bedroom door, her hand brushed up against the bathing suit she had hanging on the doorknob. “Okay, sun tanning it is,” she said to herself.
Jacque grabbed the bathing suit and went to the bathroom to change. She ran a hand down her legs and decided they were smooth enough for just laying on a towel in the backyard. She looked in the mirror at herself, pleased enough, she supposed. She was a little on the short side at five foot one and a half inches, slender and muscular from playing on the girls' tennis team. She wasn’t Beth from Dog the Bounty Hunter in the chest department, as Jen had so nicely pointed out, but she wasn’t Grace of Will and Grace either. She figured a C cup wasn’t anything to complain about. Her hair was her favorite thing about herself: auburn, curly, and wild. Most of the time she didn’t attempt to tame it, but for sun bathing she decided to put it up in a ponytail.
The bathing suit was a bikini that she'd let Sally and Jen talk her into. Though, she did get her two cents in by buying a mismatched bottom and top. She figured if she liked two different bathing suits, why not buy half of each? With that reasoning it's no wonder I'm hearing voices, she told herself.
Overall, Jacque thought, I don’t look too shabby. She slipped on her pink flip flops, grabbed her cell, iPod, towel, and sunglasses, and was out the back door.