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Without Regret

R. L. Mathewson

Page 1



  Rerum, New Hampshire

  10 years earlier……

  “Just yank it the hell out!” Chris hissed quietly, throwing an anxious glance at his closed bedroom door.

  “I’m not yanking your catheter out,” Ephraim, his adopted father and one hell of a stubborn Pyte, said dryly. “Madison is already going to kill me when she realizes that I took you and since I don’t feel like sleeping on the couch for eternity we’re not going to add pissing in her car to our list of f**k ups tonight. ”

  “Fine, but let’s get the hell out of here before someone catches us,” Chris said impatiently. He wasn’t too worried about the catheter, at least not right now. He’d find a way to ditch it before they reached the compound.

  There was no way he was letting his future mate think that he needed to piss in a bag, even if he did, besides this little setback was only temporary.

  He didn’t give a f**k what the doctors said. There was no way in hell he was spending the next hundred and eighty years strapped to a wheelchair. Thanks to his Sentinel blood and the blood Eric gave him, his neck had healed, the bones in his shoulder had fused back together along with the muscle, and his shattered spine had fixed itself along with the aid of a few surgeries.

  Now he was just waiting on the damn nerves to do their thing so he could get off his ass and get back to work.

  “Are you sure you want to do this?” Ephraim asked softly as he gently pulled Chris’ tee shirt up to reveal the stitches running from just above his navel to his rib cage.

  Chris shoved his shirt back down. “It’s fine. Now let’s go!”

  Instead of moving his ass and getting Chris out of there, Ephraim sat down on the edge of the hospital bed Grandma had ordered for him. He ran a hand through his short hair as he looked Chris over.

  “I don’t think that-“

  “I’m fine,” Chris stressed, cutting his father off.

  Ephraim simply continued. “-this is such a good idea.

  You just got out of the hospital yesterday. I don’t think that we should move you so soon after surgery, buddy,”

  he said in the same fatherly tone he used with Chris’

  little brother Joshua when he wanted to stay up late.

  He wasn’t a f**king kid and he wasn’t staying here when his mate was less than two hundred miles away.

  Not f**king happening. He was going to Boston and he didn’t give a f**k if he had to crawl the entire way. His mate was waiting for him and nothing was going to stop him from going to her.

  “Look,” Ephraim said, looking at a loss at what to do, “why don’t I call Eric and have him bring the three girls here so that we can see which one of them is your mate? That way you don’t have to risk landing your ass back in the hospital for another surgery. ”

  “Fuck that, I’m going,” Chris said, struggling to sit up.

  Sharp pain had him gasping and falling back on the bed, holding his stomach as a loud scream he couldn’t hold back escaped his clenched lips.

  “Chris? Chris!” Ephraim said, sounding close to panic.

  Frustrated tears ran down his cheeks as he willed the feeling of fire and shards of glass tearing through his stomach to stop. It hurt so f**king bad. At the moment he was pretty sure it hurt more now than it had when the bullet tore through him.

  “Hold on, Chris,” Ephraim said.

  Chris opened his eyes, gasping for air and watched as his father flashed out of the room, well it looked like he flashed, but in reality his father was moving faster than human eyes, even his Sentinel eyes, could see.

  Normally he’d call his father a f**king show off, but right now he was in too much pain to give a shit.

  “Chris?” Madison said, from the hallway.


  There went their plans. He just had to be a pu**y and scream, didn’t he? If he had just taken it like a man Madison would have slept through their little escape, but now that she was awake they wouldn’t be able to hide a damn thing from her.

  Fucking Pyte abilities, he thought bitterly as a fresh wave of pain tore through him.

  “Dad!” he screamed, hating himself even as he did it.

  For sixteen years he’d taken care of himself and never needed or expected anything from anyone least of all his bitch of a mother. As long as he’d stayed out of her way and didn’t rat her out to the cops she’d been more than happy to let him sleep on a pile of rags on the living room floor of the shitty trailer she rented. It had been more than fine with him. He hadn’t needed anything from anyone and never expected shit.

  In less than a year he’d gone from having absolutely nothing and no one to having a large family and apparently turning into a daddy’s boy. If he wasn’t in so much pain he’d kick his own ass.

  “What’s going on?” his sister Jill asked drowsily.

  Chris forced his eyes open and looked over at his doorway to find Jill, Joshua and one of the priests, who’d moved into the house to offer extra protection, standing there looking nervous and watching him with pity.

  “Get out,” he mumbled, gasping for air as new pain shot through his stomach.

  “What?” Jill asked, hurrying towards him.

  “Get out!” he screamed as humiliation mixed with pain.

  He didn’t want them to see him like this. He was supposed to be their big brother. It was his job to protect them. They shouldn’t be seeing him like this. He wasn’t weak and he didn’t want them to think that he was. They lived in a dangerous world and now that Madison was carrying a baby, a Pyte, they were in so much more danger now and needed to know that they could count on him when the shit hit the fan. He didn’t need them worrying about him.

  “Chris, let me-” Jill started to say.

  “Get out!” he yelled, squeezing his eyes shut as more pain tore through his stomach, starting just above his navel where the numbness that ruled the lower half of his body ended. When the hell would it end? It needed to end or knock him the f**k out.

  “Go back to bed,” he heard Madison whisper softly.

  “We were just trying to help,” Jill mumbled, sounding hurt.

  “Is Chris going to be okay?” Joshua asked, sobbing. “I can give him his medicine if he needs it or change his bandages. ”

  “Shhh, it’s okay. Just go to bed. Your father and I will take care of it,” Madison promised soothingly.

  “Okay,” Jill mumbled.

  “I hope you feel better, Chris,” Joshua mumbled.

  Chris could only grit his teeth and bury his face against the pillow, praying he wouldn’t scream again and further embarrass himself.

  He felt the small bed dip seconds before he felt Madison press a kiss to his damp forehead. Still squeezing his eyes shut, he reached out blindly until he found the large swell of her stomach. He placed his hand on her stomach, using his little brother’s kicks and moves to focus on and escape the pain. Without a word, Madison rolled onto her side and laid her head on his shoulder as he did his best not to cry.

  “I’m sorry it took so long. I had to get your grandmother to help me find your morphine in that damn walk-in closet that she calls a fridge,” he heard Ephraim explain as he walked into the room.

  Chris didn’t move or allow a sound to escape his lips as Ephraim gently picked up his hand and injected a double dose of morphine into his IV lock. As he felt the medicine slowly spread through his veins he wished he was truly human instead of a Sentinel who held the half soul of a human and that of an angel. His angel half was resistant to things like medication, alcohol and drugs. The shit they used to knock him out for his surgeries would kill a human. To even feel a slight relief from t
he pain he had to receive double doses of medication that would lay a human out flat. But any relief, even slight was more than welcome right now as he silently begged for death.