He froze, becoming stone still. As the hover climbed the hill to the palace, his shoulders sank, and he returned his gaze to the window. “She’s my alpha,” he murmured, with a haunting sadness in his voice.
Cress leaned forward, propping her elbows on her knees, “Like the star?”
She stiffened, instantly embarrassed, and scooted back from him again. “Oh. Um. In a constellation, the brightest star is called the alpha. I thought maybe you meant that she’s…like…your brightest star.” Looking away, she knotted her hands in her lap, aware that she was blushing furiously now and this beast of a man was about to realize what an over-romantic sap she was.
But instead of sneering or laughing, Wolf sighed, “Yes,” he said, his gaze climbing up to the full moon that had emerged in the blue evening sky. “Exactly like that.
“Do you think it was destiny that brought us together?”
He squinted and, after a thoughtful moment, shook his head. “No. I’m pretty sure it was Cinder.
“It has long legs and horns and…and it’s beautiful.”
“Oh, good, we’re back to this, then.
He beamed, looking for all the world like a selfless, daring hero.
“Don’t sound so surprised.” Dropping the cane, he pulled her into a crushing embrace that tore her away from Wolf and lifted her clean off the floor. “It turns out you are worth a lot of money on the black market.”