River & Her Royal Mate by Larissa Heinrich Chapter 18

River & Her Royal Mate by Larissa Heinrich Chapter 18

Chapter 18
“Looks like he was right, dear,” Grandma Lucy stood, nodding.
River didn’t bother asking if she was sure.
Grandma had served as a midwife for their pack, particularly in difficult pregnancies over the years, before River came to live with her. Much like the revelation of her training in the old queen’s service, she didn’t like to discuss her schooling as a nurse or the traumatic deliveries she had handled before retiring.
Grandma had lost a lot, just like River.
The old woman sat beside her and held her hand, a warm reassurance. She was letting River process. The logical part of River’s brain understood it.
But…
Pregnant.
River was pregnant.
How could she be pregnant?
Not that she was actually surprised by the ‘how’. Three days of intense. intimacy should have had her worrying more about it.
But her mind had been…elsewhere.
And she never had to worry about birth control before. Because, obviously, no boyfriend. No mate. Did it even work for werewolves?
“River?” Grandma asked softly.
“Uh-huh?”
“It’s going to be alright.”
“I know. I’m… OK with it.” She meant it. Something about the situation was settling in, and felt…right.
Grandma Lucy smiled and pulled her close. “This will be a joy. Like none
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you’ve ever experienced.”
It was a joy.
A shocking, massively life altering joy.
A deep sense of belonging had begun to envelop River in her days at the castle. It really was starting to feel like home. She was looking forward to
Kai’s return.
At least until An nalise’s jacka ss of a cousin, Jakov, had arrived the day before and turned her world upside down. Not that it was his fault. But she hated the fact that the preening p rick had been the one to point it out.
How he could tell was a mystery.
Anna said he was always far too intuitive and observant for his own good. His wolf senses seemed to stay heightened in his human form.
He also had a heightened ability of being an a sshole, apparently.
Jakov reminded her of Clay slightly. If Clay were witty, clever, devious, and more aware. Maybe it was just the self-assuredness and co ki ne ss that made him reflect on her ex-mate.
Jakov clearly liked looking at himself in the mirror.
Grandma was going on about what to expect. River trained her attention. back to catch the last of it.
“-know you’ve been told, but the pregnancy will be fast and furious. Five. months for most wolf pups if all goes well. With a Lycan, you might be quicker. Every now and then you see an even shorter term like your mother when she had you. Should have been a sure sign that you were destined for great things.”
River nodded, trying to smile. There was just too much to think about.
“Grandma?”
“Yes, River, dear?”
“C-can we just keep this between us?”
“You know I won’t tell anybody. And if you take the tea I gave you, по other wolf will scent it on you from now on. But that duke’s son is another story. The brat needs a swift kick in the behind if you ask me. You might. do well to ask An nalise to get after him if you want it kept hush hush.”
Grandma had a point.
Anna seemed to be completely unfazed by…well, most everything. She would know what to do about Jakov.
River was starting to like the princess, even if she was a bit of a wild card.
She also felt like she could trust Anna.
River reluctantly left the King’s apartments where her grandmother had apparently taken up residence in an adjoining room. Not for the first time, River wondered at her Grandma’s attachment to the King.
It seemed sort of sad, but she could hardly say anything against it.
As long as she was happy.
“There you are!” Anna’s melodic voice greeted her from down the hallway.
River accepted the hug that the princess flung around her gratefully.
“Is everything…”
“Fine.”
“Fine and…?”
“And with wolf-child,” River said, smiling.
The squeal that erupted from An nalise’s mouth could have shattered glass. “Oh! I am so happy for you!”
“Thanks, Aunt Anna. But could you maybe keep it down?” River scanned the halls for signs of listening ears.
“Aunt. Oh-my-sweet-wolf-goddess. I am going to be an aunt.” Her eyes
bugged out and then narrowed suddenly. “A super, secret, kill-anything- that-threatens-my-niece aunt.”
River couldn’t resist a snorting laugh. “Niece, huh?”
“We need more of us. The males are always stirring up trouble.”
“Yeah. Case in point!” River patted her tummy. They shared a giggle as they walked down the stairs. “An na…I need to ask you a favor.”
“Anything, sister River.”
“Jakov…”
“You want me to bury his body where no one will ever find it. Noted. It won’t be easy, but-”
“No! I need him to keep his mouth shut about this, too!” River laughed.
“Disposing of his over-manicured body would keep him quiet! But I get it. Come with me,” Anna whispered with a bob of her eyebrows,
“Where are we going?”
“For a drive.”
Peeling out on the gravel made River’s navel feel like it was getting pulled through her back.
The swell of adrenaline and happy panic from the impossible acceleration of the Italian sports car made her want to scream. Or maybe it was Anna’s driving skills.
To be fair, the princess was good. But like, race car driver good. So there. were lots of wild, hairpin turns and as s-clenching swerves along the tight roads that ran all through the network of hills and valleys in the country around the castle.
At one point she braved a look at the speedometer.
She couldn’t remember exactly how fast it said, except that it didn’t make
sense.
After the mind-bending space ship ride River managed her first adrenaline-less thought when they pulled up to the railing of an overlook on the edge of the rim of sharp, low mountains that hemmed in the western edges of the castle’s lands.
Anna eased the dark green Maserati off a little ways and they waited.
“What are we…?” River looked around pointedly.
“Waiting for dirt.”
“I don’t get it.”
No sooner had she spoken than the hum of an engine reached them from around the bend.
Jakov came skidding to a halt in his convertible Porsche on the far side of the circular lot. He parked unde
an overhand of trees and almost immediately tossed his head back, looking far too pleased with himself.
Until the dark head of hair popped back up from his lap.
The chocolate skinned, wide eyed male licked his lips and leaned in to rest his head on Jakov’s shoulder.
River felt herself blush.
“See?”
“Uh…yeah. But why are we spying on him getting…ahem. It’s none of our business.”
“Come on.” Anna was out of car before River could stop her. She rushed to catch up.
“Oh, come on,” Jakov flung a grimace over his shoulder at them well before he should have noticed them. River sidled up beside Anna as she leaned over the car door and gave her cousin a winning grin.
“Get out,” he stated flatly to the young man in the from seat next to him.
The poor guy gasped and looked horrified. River felt the same way about
Chapter 18
the whole thing.”
“What the hell am I supposed to do?” The pretty man hissed as he shoved. his way out of the car, upsetting Anna’s pose.
“I don’t care. Start walking back to town? I’ll come drive you the rest of the way when I’m done with…family stuff.” The last words came out with distinct disdain. Jakov waited until the slender fellow stormed off down the road. “Well. This is… f u cking annoying.”
“Don’t worry. Jakov. I don’t care that you’re ga y,” River offered. Why would anyone?
“Oh, but that’s hardly the point, is it?” The porcelain male locked his. piercing gaze on An nalise. The princess stifled a laugh.
River was missing something, surely.
“He’s not ga y. He’s just a s lut,” Anna teased. “Jakov loves anything pretty. And he has to have them. At least for a night.”
“Spare me the An n a-l ysis, cousin. Regardless of my openness to all the lovely creatures, as far as daddy is concerned, it makes me g ay.” The words were accompanied by a dramatic eye roll.
“I’m a little confused. Why does it matter either way? Let him f uck whoever he wants.” River was getting annoyed. Would someone tell her what was going on?
“Oh, I like her! But see, it’s not so simple with my as shole father.”
“Jakov’s dad is a duke,” Anna said, as if that explained everything.
“And he’s stuck in the dark ages. The tyrant has been trying to marry me off to every Alpha’s daughter since I was ten.”
River crossed her arms doing her best to give Anna her best guilt trip. The princess beamed at her mockingly.
“See? Now he has to keep your secret, because you know his.”
A wry smirk tilted Jakov’s unnaturally symmetrical features. “Wow.
Chapter 18
Someone finally learned how to connive.”
“And someone else finally learned how to admit defeat!”
“Hardly. I only recognize my decision to let you win this round.”
“Ah. Ever the strategist, cousin.”
“Until I die! Do not fret, my knocked-up-queen-to-be. My lips are sealed. Though you will have to tell cousin Malachi that he will be a daddy eventually. And I simply must be there to see it.” He started the engine and revved it obnoxiously, signaling for them to back off from the car.
“Jac k- o ff is definitely a fitting name,” River muttered. Oops. Did she say that out loud?
Jakoy burst out in a full belly laugh. “What a delightful bit ch! You and I are going to get along splendidly. If I don’t get sick of you on my way to the throne. Carlo, wait up, I’m coming!” He shouted, the Porsche kicking up
dirt as he careened out onto the road, presumably to pick up his boy toy and make amends.
River stood looking out over the valley for a while, at a loss for words.
“I guess I should thank you?”
“No need, sister River.”
“What did he mean ‘on his way to the throne”?” River narrowed her eyes.
suspiciously.
“Nothing. He always says stuff like that, Likes to pretend there’s a competition between him and my brother for who is going to be King. It’s a joke.”
River nodded, getting back into the Maserati.
But something about the words bothered her. Jakov was clearly a plotting, sneaky, and very ambitious young male. She would have to keep an eye on
him.
He might try to use her secrets against her.
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Chapter 18
And she couldn’t allow him to become a threat to her baby, or Malachi.
She had a future to think about now.
An nalise drove a lot more tamely on the return trip, looking quite pleased. with her accomplishment for the day.
Circling along the back road toward the castle’s garages, Anna pointed as she caught sight of a dark blue car pulling up to the front of the castle. The minute they pulled back into the garage, River was out of the car and running.
Malachi was back!
River nearly sprinted through the halls and around to the entry, ready to throw herself into his arms.
And maybe, eventually give him the news.
News she hoped he would be excited about. He had to be, right?
The shapes of three dark figures walked through the shadows of the gate, outlined in bright daylight behind them. River paused at the bottom of the steps.
Oliver emerged first, his expression unreadable. He nodded almost imperceptibly at River.
It felt like….a warning.
Kai stepped into the sunlight, his hair shimmering golden at the fringes. But his eyes seemed dull, disinterested. He glanced back over his shoulder at the third person.
Then he reached down and took their hand, drawing them into the light of the courtyard.
River caught the perfumed scent of sickly sweet roses a split second before she saw the female’s grinning face.
Victoria Pullman stepped up beside Malachi.

River & Her Royal Mate by Larissa Heinrich

River & Her Royal Mate by Larissa Heinrich

Score 9.3
Status: Ongoing Type: Author: Artist: Released: January 11, 2024 Native Language: English

How To Read Novel River & Her Royal Mate by Larissa Heinrich

River Landon is ostracized by her classmates for being an orphan. When she turns 21, she realises that she is fated to the Alpha's son! But when he rejects her and claims his girlfriend instead, River is heartbroken. Little does she know that life has more in store for her than Just being the Luna of a Pack... Enter Kai, a mysterious stranger who's new to town..

River & Her Royal Mate by Larissa Heinrich

River Landon is ostracized by her classmates for being an orphan. When she turns 21, she realises that she is fated to the Alpha's son! But when he rejects her and claims his girlfriend instead, River is heartbroken. Little does she know that life has more in store for her than Just being the Luna of a Pack... Enter Kai, a mysterious stranger who's new to town..

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