Beauty Sleeps (Fairytale Shifter Book 2)(9)

By: Alexa Riley


I can sense it in my beating heart. She’s here. I close my eyes tightly and then open them again, looking out into the crowd. I take another deep breath, feeling the breeze, and I lock on to the scent. She’s there, not more than a few yards from me. Her back is to me, but that’s my mate. Her long blonde hair is being blown in the wind, and her scent is traveling straight to me. She’s the one, she’s mine.

I see Stone on the other side of her, and I stop for a second. His father used to be the pack alpha, but my wolf can sense Stone is the alpha now, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. Before I can think too much about the situation, he takes a step closer to my mate and he growls. My instincts kick in, and the only thing in my head is to protect my mate.

Surprisingly, I don’t shift. Instead, I run straight for him as fast as I can. I lunge full force at Stone, lowering my shoulder and tackling him into a nearby tent. My seven-foot-tall body is much bigger than his, and I easily take him out. My wolf howls inside me at the pride of defending my mate against the biggest wolf here.

I’m tangled in the tent, but release myself easily, jumping to my feet and getting into a fighting stance. I will fight the alpha to the death if I have to. She’s rightfully mine, and I won’t let anyone so much as look at her. As Stone gets to his feet, Dominic gets between the two of us.

“X! No!” Dominic is holding his hands up and his eyes are pleading for me to stop, but my wolf is going crazy inside me. He wants out, and I don’t know how much longer I’ll be able to hold him.

I lock eyes with Stone, and it’s then he remembers who I am. Something like regret passes across his eyes, but I can’t be sure before it’s gone and rage replaces it. He looks away from me, but I don’t take my eyes off him. I can sense my mate is close, and I need to keep my eyes on the threat to her.

“I won’t let him take her.” Stone looks around us, but I don’t care who sees. I will defeat him in front of the pack and whoever else is here. I’m sure there are humans present, but I can’t see beyond my tunnel vision. The mating bond has taken over me, and I’m blinded to all reason.


I turn around to find my mate and make sure she’s not scared. When our eyes meet, I feel the pounding beat of my heart in my ears. I look into the sweet innocent eyes of my beloved. The eyes that have haunted my dreams all these years. The eyes I wished to look into every single day. The eyes I never believed could be mine. It’s my sleeping beauty, and she’s my mate.

“He’s not stable. I won’t let him take her.” Stone’s words break through my fogged mind. “I’ll put him down first.”

I snap back to look at him to tell him what I’ll do to him if he tries it, but I hear a loud growl and turn back in time to see the source is my mate. Pride swells in my chest, and I can feel the alpha blood in her body. My wolf senses that she’s matched well with us, both of us respect her inner strength. I see her wolf come forward in her eyes, and my wolf comes forward to match hers. He wants to claim her, and he won’t wait much longer.

“Everyone just calm down. Xavier, come over here to me.” I hear Ruby call my name, and while I care for her as a close friend, it’s not her place to step into this fight. Even less so when she’s carrying cubs.

“Mine!” Again, my mate lashes out, and my heart fills with pride. She could lead her own pack with the power that’s inside her. She’s my true match.

“Goddamn it. All of you knock it the fuck off!” Dominic’s voice silences everyone. He looks at me, and I see the compassion in his eyes. “Let him take her. He won’t hurt her.”

Dominic, having a mate of his own, understands what’s happening. I would never harm a single hair on my mate’s head. My life is now dedicated to hers until my last breath.

“No.” Stone says the single word to Dominic, but his eyes are locked on me in challenge. So be it.

“I’ll fight you and win.” I have no problems shredding him to pieces if he’s what’s standing between me and what’s mine. I crouch, preparing to attack him. I can smell my mate’s fear, my body and wolf already attuned to her. I turn to meet my love’s eyes and try to ease her worries. “You have nothing to fear from me. I’ll prove I’m strong and a good mate. You’ll see.”

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