A small movement on the large bed stirred my awakening. I opened my eyes and saw Tara propped on one elbow gazing at me lovingly.
"Whatcha doing?" I asked sleepily
"Watching a Goddess sleep." She said quietly.
"Well this Goddess is going to be completely yours by tomorrow night." I said yawning.
"I know." She smiled leaning in to kiss me.
"Mmm, what time is it?" I said looking around the giant king sized bed.
"Almost sunset." Tara answered dully.
"What's wrong?" I asked worried.
She avoided my eyes and reached out to play with my fingers. "There's something you should know."
"Okay." I said, Tara was scaring me, I hope she wasn't going to leave me. Had I done anything since last night. Sure I didn't touch her intimately, I wasn't quite ready for that but did that mean she would leave me for it? No, Tara's not like that. Just shut up Willow and let the girl speak!
"We h-have your father, chained in the basement. We weren't quite sure what to do with him. Faith wanted to kill him, but I told her it was up to you what they should do with him. He is not a nice man, I don't know your guy's history but by the way he went on about you and your mother I didn't think that it was wise to take any rash actions."
I had completely forgot about my father still being alive. I've gone so long thinking William had killed him for me, like he said he did. William had even helped me bury my mother, that was all a lie, everything was a lie.
"I-I don't know what to do?" I said shaking. Tara leaned in and took me in her arms.
"You don't have to do anything about it now. He's not going anywhere any time soon. Just, lets get through the ceremony and we'll make the decision together. What happened between you guys?"
I looked up into her eyes and swallowed back my tears. Tara was going to be my mate from now until forever, there was going to be no secrets between us. Carefully and accurately I retold my past to Tara. From my mother's murder to my killing days with William.
I explained how I gave up killing humans when it didn't thrill me anymore. Taking life wasn't who I was even though William had instructed that is the way we survive.
Tara listened patiently not speaking until I was finished. I waited for her to reject me, to say I had too much baggage and run the other away but quiet she stayed and by my side.
I cringed and began to pull away but Tara grabbed me and kissed me gently. "I love you, Willow. Don't be afraid to tell me things, ever okay?"
Quickly I brushed a tear that was rolling down my face. "Okay."
The door burst open and the little blonde woman, Sunny, came panting towards us. "Mistress! Marcus is dyeing, come quick!"
Tara sprung up and I jumped with her. "What's happened to Marcus?" I asked confused.
"Sunny go down to him I'll be right there." Tara said. Sunny left then my love turned back to me. "Marcus is the one that alerted me about your disappearance. He fought with my wolves to protect you. Without his help we never would have got there in time. I owe him a great deal."
Never had I known before that Marcus was such a smart animal. I always figured he was just a regular house dog, guess I was wrong.
"What can we do for him?" I asked my heart swelling with grief.
"There isn't much we can do. He got beat up pretty bad, a punctured lung, his back legs are broke and he lost one eye. I'm surprised he's lived this long." Tara said sadly.
I made my way quickly out of the room and started at a dead run down the stairs, leaving Tara behind. Reaching the bottom I looked around the large living space but saw no one. Off at the other end of the hall there was faint voices and I heard a small whimper.
Down the hall I went throwing the door on the left open. There was Marcus laying on his own cot on the floor, dried blood clung to the sheet on the carpet. Faith was sitting in the corner on one of the dinning room chairs and Kennedy along with Sunny were bent over the mutt keeping his gorged eye clean of infection. Standing next to Faith was another blonde woman I didn't know, one good sniff indicated she was human but I didn't care.
"Oh Marcus." I whispered, swallowing down my despair. He lifted his head slightly and his tail managed a few good thumps but he failed any more attempts to communicate with me for his heart had finally gave way and now he lay motionless.
Tara came up behind me and hugged me around the waist. "He loved you Willow, he always looked after you."
I turned to face her, wrapping my body around hers. The tears came without being asked and I balled into Tara's shoulder until she picked me up and carried me back upstairs.
She lay me on the bed with such ease and I settled in. I hadn't been anywhere but this room in the last few days. I was too weak to do much of anything so I just stayed put. Every now and then Tara wouldn't be by my side and I would become restless but she would return within seconds of my dismay.
"Will you be fine for a little while? I have to do some things with my wolves." Tara asked looking at me intently.
"Yeah, I'm okay, can you send Raoul in when you go. I need to speak to him about something." I replied sniffing.
"Of course." Tara nodded and headed towards the door. She paused and turned her head to look at me. "As a pack we don't see death as something horrible, we see it as a new rebirth of something much more greater. Marcus will not be forgotten among us."
I choked back more tears and blew her a trembling kiss. She held her hand up to catch it and walked out.
Sighing I tried to compose myself. Raoul rounded the door and came cheerfully in, clapping his hands together."What's going on? Oh." He stopped when he saw my puffy face. "You okay?"
"Why does everyone always ask that when you're not?" I said laughing slightly.
Raoul shrugged. "Just habit I guess. So what did you want to see me about?"
"I need you to get something for me before the ceremony tomorrow." I said giving him my best mischievous smile.
"I am your humble servant." He bowed mockingly.
"Good. This is what I want you to do."