Chapter 2 - Alpha Nocturne's Contracted Mate

She sniffled miserably as she looked around her. Somehow she had ended up in the popular club district of the city, well known for its nightlife.

The pulsating beats that emanated from inside some of the buildings did nothing but remind her of the strong, rhythmic heartbeat that she would hear when she laid her head on Brad's chest, and the grief would hit her all over again.

'Perhaps you can find a quieter bar,' Maeve growled.

Ann jumped at the sudden gruff voice in her head and it took her a moment before she had recovered enough to reply.

'But... Maeve... I don't drink... I never have.' Ann protested.

'No? Well, fated mates don't ever sleep with their mate's sister either... yet here we are. Now seems like a perfect time to start drinking.' She snapped back brutally.

Ann bit her lip, unsure how to reply and she felt the sensation of Maeve sighing heavily.

'Even if you don't want to drink, I want something to numb us both. Fratricide is frowned upon and if I see that bitch again then you can be sure that she'll get what's coming to her. Until then, find somewhere quiet and drink until I shut up.' she grumbled.

Ann took a deep breath and lowered her head, hoping that her hair covered her face from the curious glances that were cast her way.

They eventually arrived at a bar well known for its high-profile clientele and commitment to protecting their privacy. It was the perfect place to hide for a little while.

The doorman stopped her instantly and laughed.

"Listen, missy, I know we're called The Minster, but I think you've got the wrong kind of church, you can't get married here."

Ann felt her cheeks flush furiously as she lifted her head to stare at him defiantly.

He visibly blanched as he realized who she was and apologized profusely.

"Ah... Miss Veritas! I'm sorry I just... with your attire... wedding dresses aren't usually... and..." He stammered hopelessly, stumbling over his words as Ann narrowed her eyes at him and the golden irises of her wolf peeked out at him furiously.

"If I wanted jokes I would go and see a comedian. I wanted somewhere quiet to drink where no one would bother me." Ann hissed.

The doorman hurriedly escorted her inside and she was shown to a booth on the top floor, reserved only for those with the highest profiles. Being the daughter of an Alpha King granted her that privilege and as she squeezed into the booth, lifting the hem of her dress so as not to get wrapped up in it, she was grateful for the lack of prying eyes.

It wasn't long before the manager of the establishment approached her and apologized profusely for the conduct of his doorman. As a way of showing his sincerity, he offered complimentary drinks for the evening.

Ann had accepted the offer graciously and when he handed her the drinks menu she accepted Maeve's suggestions for drinks and didn't hold back on ordering.

After her fourth glass of Bellevue Cabernet, she came to the decision that there was no way that she would go through with this wedding. If Brad could do this to her now, before they were even married and marked, the chances were that his behavior would only get worse.

'It's the worst kind of betrayal. You should seduce him and let me rip his penis off so he'll never be able to bury himself balls deep in another woman again.' Maeve snarled.

For some reason, Ann giggled at Maeve's fierceness and a ripple of amusement ran through her from Maeve's direction.

'It would be a bit messy, Maeve. I think the rejection should do fine.' Ann giggled.

'Maybe take a man home with you tonight and repay the favor,' Maeve smirked.

'Maeve!' Ann protested, her flush from the wine deepening suddenly as she felt her ears grow hotter.

Before long Ann found herself in dire need of a visit to the toilet and as she made her way through the maze-like corridors of private rooms and private offices, she walked straight into what she thought was the ladies' room.

As she adjusted her dress and took a seat in the cubicle, the sound of footsteps entering the room could be heard and she stifled a giggle.

The alcohol had indeed had a drastic effect on her. Although they had a naturally strong tolerance for alcohol, the Bellevue witches had worked wonders with their line of fortified wines.

She swayed a little as she stood and turned to flush when she froze. The distinct tones of the two males talking could be heard quite clearly.

"Alpha, I know you don't want to talk about this but you really must consider your options." A male voice pleaded.

"Not this again, Allen." A deep, husky voice sighed heavily, clearly tired of whatever subject this related to.

'Eavesdropping seems to be a talent that we've recently acquired…' Maeve slurred in amusement in Ann's head.

'Shhhh! They might hear us!' Ann answered back through their mind link, stifling yet another giggle.

"If the others find out about the curse, then you know it will lead to bids for takeovers."

"And what? If I don't have a Luna I can't rule well? Give me a break, Allen." The deep voice snorted derisively.

"If you can't produce an heir the pack's future isn't secure! At least consider taking a chosen mate."

"And if my mate shows up in the meantime?"

"Can you be sure that they would be truthful about that matter? The curse took away your ability to..."

The curse? What the curse is?