Chapter 7 - Accidental Surrogate for Alpha


“This baby is mine.” I tell him possessively. “You can’t just tell me you’re magic and expect me to take that as proof you’re the father.”

“My senses don’t lie, little human.” Sinclair declares, leaving no room for argument. “Nor do my investigators. You’re not in any position to care for this child. Your income is too low to pay off your debts in time, and no woman who claims to be responsible would ever get pregnant in such a situation.”

“My income?” I force the words out through clenched teeth, “what income? You got me fired!”

The big man… or wolf, I suppose, blinks in surprise. “You were fired?”

“Now who’s playing dumb?” I demand wryly. “You called the Graves after I asked you to help Cora, you got me fired and ruined my reputation.”

“I did no such thing.” He insists. “I didn’t even know you were no longer employed.”

“I thought your investigators were the best?” I taunt, and I can feel myself toeing the line of his temper.

“Clearly this was very recent.” He bites back. “And I don’t blame you for becoming desperate, but you have to admit the only explanation for this,” He gestures to my tummy, “is that you needed money and hoped to extort it from me in exchange for the child.”

“I wanted this child more than anything in the world!” I exclaim, surging to my feet. “I’ve been trying to get pregnant for years and when I came to Cora I didn’t know about the identity theft or that I was going to lose my job. This was my last chance and you have no idea how hard it’s been… how painful it is to think I might have to abort it because of everything that’s happened since.” I didn’t mean to tell him so much, but the words poured out of me before I could stop them. I’ve been so preoccupied with these thoughts the last few days I clearly couldn’t keep them contained.

“Abort it!?” Sinclair rises to his feet in a blur, suddenly towering over me despite the fact that I’m still standing on the exam table’s step. “So now you’re threatening me?”

“What?!” I cry, “no! It doesn’t have anything to do with you, as you said I can’t afford to have a baby so I was trying to do the right thing!”

“Werewolves don’t abort their pups.” He growls. “Our children are too precious and Cora knows that. I’m sure that’s what she was thinking when she suggested using my sperm.”

“Argh!” I explode, clenching my hands into fists. “You’re impossible! How many times do I have to tell you that if this child is yours, it was an accident! Cora didn’t switch the samples on purpose and I didn’t get pregnant because I wanted you to pay off my debts!”

He narrows his eyes at me. “You’re a very good actress, you know that?”

“And you’re a snake.” I snap. “I wouldn’t be surprised if you have scales when you shift instead of fur!”

A true growl sounds in his chest, so full of raw power that my knees go weak. “Be careful Ella, I’m showing you a lot of lenience right now because you don’t know our ways, but keep speaking to me like that and I’ll –”

“You’ll what?” I hiss, “you just told me how precious your pups are so I know you’re not going to hurt me.” To my horror, I feel my eyes burning with tears. Swiping at them angrily, I continue, “and I’ve already lost everything else I care about, so it’s not like you can punish me some other way.”

I spin away so that he can’t see me cry. I don’t know what to do – I know how suspicious our situation looks. If I didn’t know better, I would think the same thing he did. It was all too suspicious, especially now that I know the truth about Cora’s lab. It couldn’t be easy to mix up samples of different species… wait a minute. The little voice in the back of my head whispers, and I turn back to Sinclair.

“If you didn’t know it was possible for a human to be impregnated by a werewolf, why would Cora have ever attempted to use your sperm?” I interrogate. “She couldn’t have known it was the wrong sample. She wouldn’t have believed it would work even if we were as calculating as you seem to think. And if all I wanted was to extort your money, why haven’t I asked for it? Why haven’t I admitted it?”

The huge werewolf blinks, processing this information with a grimace. Silence stretches between us and eventually he sighs, scrubbing a hand over his face. “I’m not saying I believe you, but however it happened, we need to come to an agreement.”

I eye him warily, “what sort of agreement?”

“Just name your price, Ella.” He mutters, pinching the bridge of his nose. “How much do you want?”

“For what? The baby?” I sputter, “You want me to sell you my child?”

“It’s my child, and it will be raised by me.” He insists. “You don’t belong in my world. So how much is it going to take for you to give it up?”

“I’m not going to negotiate a price for my baby, like it’s a bag of rice or a car! Nor do I want it raised by someone who thinks of it as nothing more than a commodity!” I’m raising my voice now, feeling beyond offended for the tiny being in my womb.

“You don’t know what you’re talking about!” Sinclair grumbles, “do you have any idea how long I’ve been waiting for an heir?”

“An heir, not a child – not a son or daughter, but an heir – is that all it is to you? Some hypothetical legacy? I might not be able to prevent myself from losing this child now, but I’m not going to hand it over to someone who doesn’t give a damn about it beyond what it can offer them.” I state ferociously, my maternal instincts kicking into high gear.

“As I said, you don’t know what you’re talking about.” He repeats gutturally. “I will give this baby a life you never could, it will want for absolutely nothing! With you its best chance is to scrounge and scrape in poverty, assuming you have the decency to let it live. With me it will be treated like a prince or princess.”

“Money can’t buy everything.” I remind him coolly. “I notice you said nothing about love.”

“Because I already love it!” He snarls, “I have a connection to my pup you will never understand. How dare you speak to me about love when you contemplated killing it!”

“That was also out of love!” I exclaim, “I didn’t want it to suffer, I didn’t want it to grow up like…” I almost said, ‘like I did’, but I stop myself just in time. “I love it more than myself, and I was willing to sacrifice my own happiness for its sake.”

“Then do as much now.” Sinclair commands, “Give it a life you can’t, by signing over custody to me. Carry the baby and deliver it, then leave it with me where it belongs.”

“You don’t understand, if I do that I’ll never be able to walk away from it.” I beseech him. “I’m not that strong. If I carry it to term, I’ll never be able to give it up – I need to be there to care for and protect it.”

“That’s simply not possible.” Sinclair proclaims. “You aren’t fit to be a mother to any child and especially not mine. You can’t even care for yourself, that much is obvious by your debts–”

“I already told you–” I try to object, however he keeps talking over me.

“And your excuse about Cora assumes she understands enough about werewolf society to know we don’t cross breed. All she knows is that we exist, and how to inseminate our women. She probably assumed we occasionally mate with humans and just lucked out!” He accuses.

“She’s a doctor who works with your samples all the time, she probably knows a lot more about your organic chemistry than you do yourselves.” I defend, realizing too late that this could also incriminate her.

He arches his brow, clearly thinking along the same lines. “Either way, she proved she wasn’t to be trusted as soon as she betrayed her confidentiality agreement about my sperm to you, and you’ve proved you can’t be trusted by changing your story every ten seconds. You can’t love the baby enough to abort it but not love it enough to give it up to a better life. I clearly just haven’t offered you a high enough price yet.”

“That isn’t fair,” I object, shaking my head. I’ve just learned everything I believe to be true was actually false, at the height of an extremely emotional moment. I wasn’t even conscious the whole time. How can he expect me to think or communicate clearly?

He doesn’t budge. “It’s alright, Ella. You don’t need to make excuses. I’m going to make you an offer you can’t refuse.”