This is what I think happens in this picture...
Ian glanced over his shoulder. "He's my mate, dad."
"He still interfered with an alpha challenge, Ian." Aldo Kline's gaze was filled with sadness and resignation. "I am sorry, my son. He will have to face the council for his actions."
Dread bled the color from Ian's face. He knew what that meant. Interfering in an alpha challenge was a death sentence. Ian prayed with everything in him that the council would understand the mitigating circumstances.
Ian hadn't killed to gain the alpha position. He had done it to save his mate. Ian could do no less and he refused to lose his mate now that he had found him. If Billy was to die, they would die together.
"Forgive me," Ian whispered as he lifted Billy up into his arms. Before anyone could stop him, Ian bent down and sank his fangs into the soft flesh of Billy's throat. The instant he took that first swallow, Ian felt his soul reach out and connect with Billy's.
The soft cry he heard and the sweet bitter scent of Billy's semen as the man came apart in his arms should have been the culmination of a lifetime search for his mate. Instead, it was taken in the middle of a ceremonial circle in view of over a hundred people.
The regret Ian felt was barely overshadowed by the knowledge that he had claimed his mate without Billy's permission. It was wrong, and he would probably go to hell for it, but Ian would gladly burn for all eternity if it meant keeping Billy alive.
"Bloody hell, Ian," Ryan snapped. "Do you know what you've done?"
Ian took one more long sip of Billy's blood before extracting his teeth. One lick over the bite wound turned into another, and then another, as the taste of Billy's luscious skin blasted across his tongue.
Had anyone ever tasted so sweet?
"You're mine now, Billy."
Billy's smile was languid, dreamy. "Always been yours."
Ian knew Billy spoke the truth. He felt it in his soul. He just didn't know how it had happened. He also knew he had met Billy at some point in his life. The niggling of recognition was in the back of his mind. He just couldn't pin it down.
When council soldiers came to pull Billy from his arms, Ian gave a low threatening growl and allowed his claws to slide out of the tips of his fingers. No one was taking his mate from him.
"No." Billy's voice was laden with sorrow. "You have to let me go."
"No," Ian snarled.
"You have to." Billy's hand curved around the side of Ian's face, turning him until their eyes met. Ian swallowed past the lump in his throat when he saw the tears sparkling in Billy's crystal blue eyes. "You have to let me go, Ian."
"I will never let you go," Ian argued even as he loosened his hold on his mate. He knew Billy spoke the truth. If he fought the council, he would lose. If he used their bond and his new position as alpha of the Silverlight Pack, he might have a chance of saving his mate. "I will come for you, Billy."
Billy's smile was bittersweet. "I'll be waiting."
When Billy leaned up and pressed their lips together, Ian knew he had been waiting for this man his entire life. The mere brush of their lips together garnered him more pleasure than every sexual experience he had ever had.
Ian had been chosen to take over for his father for a reason. His strength and self control were things of legend. His steadfast dedication to those he protected spoken of with pride by the members of his pack.
And it took every ounce of that hard earned self control to allow the council soldiers to take Billy out of his arms. He stood there, ramrod stiff, as he watched them lead Billy away, wondering if he would ever see his mate again or if all he would be left with were dreams and a kiss.
"We'll get him back, Ian," Ryan said as he rested his hand on Ian's shoulder.
Ian had his doubts. What Billy had done was in defense of him and the Silverlight Pack, but that didn't mean it had been right. "He not only interfered with a lawful alpha challenge, he killed the challenger. The council won't take that lightly."
Ian turned to look at his father. "We need to finish the ceremony."
Only in his position as alpha could he save his mate.
Aldo Kline nodded his head before turning to look at those assembled. "If there are any other challengers to Ian's right to be alpha of the Silverlight Pack, speak now or forever hold your peace."
Ian's quickly schooled his features to hide his surprise when every man, woman, and child there knelt down in front of him, crossing their fisted hands over their chest in a sign of respect.
Ian breathed in a deep steadying breath when he felt the sliver of connection he had with his alpha become stronger before fanning out to encompass every member of his pack. From this moment on, he would be able to feel how each member of his pack was doing, talk to them through the alpha link, and command them to do his bidding.
He was their alpha.
"I haven't seen this sort of devotion since I became alpha," Aldo said in a reverent voice. "You've made me proud, son."
"Then tell me how to get Billy back." Because he had no freaking clue. The laws of the challenge were there for a reason. He couldn't break them just because he wanted to. Only the council could set Billy free. "Tell me how to save my mate."Come back January 16th to find out what happens next in Billy & Ian's story...