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    Headstall
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.

Morningstar: The Malaise - 16. Chapter 16 Torture

There are none so blind....

Morningstar: The Malaise

 

 

Chapter 16

 

 

As on edge as Kellar was about Tilly’s conversation with Tobyn, he refrained from asking questions. In fact, he never uttered a sound. They were walking side by side, but a good three feet separated them. There was none of the shoulder-bumping closeness he was used to. It was the first time his friend exhibited any desire for distance from Kellar, and the mixed vibe he was getting filled him with trepidation. Because of what Adelin had said, he had a pretty good idea of at least part of what was talked about. The one comment that stuck out was how Tilly suspected Tobyn’s attraction for him, and figured Kellar was aware of it too. His main focus had been on Tobyn’s waves of distress, so only a modicum of attention had been placed on Adelin’s words, yet he sure as hell remembered those ones.

He was fairly certain nothing was mentioned about what he might feel for Tilly’s boyfriend. Wait. Adelin had said ‘you like him, don’t you?’ Yeah, they knew. It appeared everything was out in the open, so how had Tobyn responded? What was his part in the interaction?

Nothing was forthcoming from the withdrawn man so far, leaving Kellar to speculate there must have been an ultimatum given at the very least. That, and Tobyn’s troubling silence for the last ten minutes, fed his growing guilt, and his queasiness. It was difficult to control an escalating curiosity, but he was determined to wait until his friend was ready to talk. What was his presence at Morningstar costing this guy?

It appeared things had come to a head between the couple, so maybe he was going back to his cabin sooner rather than later. It would be somewhat ironic after their earlier conversation, but he’d do whatever Tobyn required of him. As he had pointed out to Kellar… it was going to hurt either way. He just wished the suspense would end. Often, he could read Tobyn easily, but this time there was a swirl of emotions coming from the man, and Kellar was stymied. The one he wasn’t feeling was despair, so hopefully that was a good sign, and meant he hadn’t been the cause of any lasting devastation to his friend.

When they arrived, Tobyn did an abrupt halt at the beginning of the path to the front door, and suggested Kellar go on inside. Looking everywhere but at him, he mumbled that he wanted to walk in the woods for a few minutes. Kellar nodded, not knowing what to say as he got a clear message the man wanted some space. What the fuck had happened? He wanted to scream with frustration, but instead, headed up to the house alone. His penance wasn’t over. Glancing back, he watched Tobyn striding away with shoulders hunched and head down, the body language proclaiming he was lost in a world that excluded him.

The agitation started almost immediately, but Kellar forced himself to ignore it and let Tobyn have his requested solitude. As expected, the separation was excruciating, especially given the reason for it. Eventually, after sitting in the kitchen for twenty minutes, he began to pace. He did his best to control an unreasonable panic, but the need to check on the man became too intense to resist.

Stepping back outside, nervous, but powerless to do any different, he called out. His heart skipped when there was no answer. Kellar couldn’t sense him anywhere close, and that skyrocketed his unease. At the same time he spied the pile of unfolded clothes under a tree, he caught a faint scent in the distance. So, he had shifted and taken off… away from Kellar. The urge to vomit was back.

His thoughts went to their run together, and how special it had been… the soothing magic of sharing that with another wolf. One he loved so much he would let him go. Was it going to turn out to be a one of? A single memory? Stepping further away into the woods, he stopped fighting, and let his stomach empty its contents.

As much as he wanted to respect Tobyn’s privacy, he found he couldn’t… not until he knew the guy was all right. Maybe it was selfish, but there was something else at work here, and he’d accepted it. Maybe someday, Tobyn would too. Sitting in the house alone had made him face some hard facts. He hadn’t wanted to think about how rough it would be when they were separated by a great distance, but all pretense was gone. It would be a hell that might well last the rest of his life. Stripping and setting his wolf free, he followed the trail his friend had taken, pulling the man’s pheromones into his lungs as he bolted forward at full speed.

It was a beautiful night, and normally the dusk-lit scenery would have filled him with peace, but he had only Tobyn on his mind. So, he concentrated on chasing him down. Despite being bigger and faster, it still took way too long to close the distance. Finally, he succeeded, and slowed as he neared the crest of a craggy hilltop. It had been a steady and winding climb for miles. His superior hearing picked up the sound of labored breathing… not panting. He saw the reason as he stepped into a clearing. Tobyn was back in human form, sitting on a plateau of flat stone with his back against a broken old tree trunk. It was some sort of lookout, and despite the dusk, Kellar could see why someone needing to think or get away, would head to this place.

He shifted and walked tentatively toward the blond man. From what he could tell, Tobyn was physically fine. His face was difficult to decipher as he met Kellar’s eyes with his own still-troubled ones.

“I’m really sorry, Tobyn. You probably want to be by yourself… I mean, I know you do… you told me, but I just had to….”

“Kellar, stop. You don’t have to apologize. I knew you would come looking for me. It’s fine.”

“How did you… never mind; I am sort of predictable, aren’t I?”

Tobyn snorted. “Right now, I don’t find anyone predictable. I just knew I could count on you… being worried about me. Yeah, maybe you’re the one person whose actions I can predict… at least some of them.”

Kellar relaxed, smiling in response as he propped himself alongside Tobyn, finally able to filter through and get a better read on the man. He wasn’t as closed up as he’d been before running off, and Kellar was pleased to sense Tobyn’s distress had lessened. They sat in companionable silence as their breathing slowed to normal. The view was spectacular from this vantage point. Only when the last sliver of sun had sunk below the horizon did he speak… barely above a whisper. “Are you doing all right, buddy?”

Tobyn sighed, but that was all for a long minute. “Yeah, I guess I am. Tilly pointed out she and I are too much like brother and sister to be anything more. She decided that all on her own. I’ve been dumped.”

“Shit, man. I’m sorry.” Kellar hadn’t allowed his mind go to this possibility, but now that it was out there, he wasn’t surprised.

Tobyn inhaled and expelled a few deep breaths before he continued. “You know, it’s not like it had gotten serious yet. I don’t know… maybe it never could have. Tilly pointed out she knows me better than anyone, and says I wouldn’t be happy with….” He stopped talking, and Kellar waited. He was pretty sure what the man had been about to say. “She wants to hold out for someone who’s in love with her, and says I should too.”

Kellar swallowed down the heart that had moved to his throat. “Are you in love with her?”

“I’m… no… no, but I do love her. She’s a beautiful person, and I felt something… but then things… oh I don’t know what I’m saying. Am I making any sense?”

Kellar nodded. “Yeah, of course. She is a wonderful girl, and anyone can see how much you care for her. I’m sorry you couldn’t work it out.” Tobyn gave him a funny look. What had he said? Or was it something he hadn’t said?

Looking away, and out into the distance, the blond man continued to open up. “I thought it would be enough, so at first I didn’t think she was right, but I do want her to be happy… to have what she wants. She does deserve someone who’s in love with her.” He became quiet once more. Time stretched, but it wasn’t awkward. Kellar understood he was trying to sort through his emotions. “It’s just that we’ve talked forever about having kids… as many as we could possibly have. With so few options, what happens now?”

“I get it, Tobyn. You want to build Morningstar’s population back up if at all possible, and you’re right to want to do that… Tilly still can, and so can you if… with someone else. This doesn’t need to be the end of your plans for having children. Maybe you’ll find someone from another pack, and you’ll both be fertile? You’re not even twenty-one yet, man.”

Kellar couldn’t let himself think about what he wanted. Not in this moment, anyway. This was about Tobyn. He had to want it too, and at this point it looked like he didn’t. He certainly wasn’t ready to consider other possibilities… other directions. His priorities were still elsewhere, and they were deeply imbedded ones. Don’t go there… just fucking don’t.

Tobyn turned his face back toward Kellar. He opened his mouth to speak, but again held back whatever he was going to say, sighing instead. “Let’s go back. I’m fine now. Thank you for being such a good friend. Sorry I made you worry,” he said as he once again averted his eyes. “I’m lucky I met you.”

He wasn’t fooling Kellar. He’d just let him completely off the hook with that statement, making sure he didn’t feel any blame, but he didn’t want to say what Kellar already knew. Tilly had witnessed the same thing he had. It didn’t matter, though, because the man was afraid of those feelings, and maybe always would be. It hurt… a lot. He had to keep in mind plans Tobyn had held on to for years had suddenly fallen apart, and he needed some time. Kellar was determined he would be his friend, and let him come to his own conclusions. Fuck. “Can you shift?”

“Oh, yeah, no problem. I didn’t fall out of it… not even close. I shifted back on purpose so we could talk. I knew you were coming… and you had a right to know what happened.”

Kellar stood first, reaching out and pulling him to his feet. “Old reliable… that’s me… come on. I’ll race you.” He pulled too hard, and when Tobyn stumbled, they bumped together briefly, so Kellar used his other hand to steady them. According to the blond man, shifters never gave a thought to nudity, but he sure as hell did when it came to this beautiful guy. His body fascinated him, naked or clothed, and the feel of the man’s skin on his fingertips caused immediate arousal. Out of urgent necessity, Kellar shifted and took off, yipping for the sandy-colored wolf to follow.

It couldn’t be classed as a race at all; more like a therapeutic play-date for both of them, with a lot of leaping and tumbling and chasing. It was good to see Tobyn let go and enjoy the moment, and Kellar was right there with him. His fears they would never share such a run again had been unfounded, and the miles back to the log house were covered much more enjoyably than the trip out. Kellar suspected the earlier sadness has been put on temporary hold, and that was fine with him. Tobyn needed this, and so did he. Does the man realize how much longer he can hold his shift for? As they neared their destination, the smaller wolf sneak-attacked Kellar, grabbing his tail and yanking gently. When he whirled to retaliate, his friend leapt over him and took off in a golden blur.

Kellar accelerated, giving his best, but didn’t catch up in time. He didn’t mind Tobyn’s tactics to obtain the bragging rights to their haphazard race, although he pretended otherwise. All’s fair in love and… no, that didn’t apply. Returning to human form, with a little out-of-breath razzing and insincere complaining, they picked up their clothes and headed inside. By the time they reached the door, the respite was over, and silence had returned.

Tobyn walked straight to his room, and Kellar couldn’t help watching the muscles of his ass work as he followed him down the hallway. The sight was mesmerizing. The sound of the bedroom door closing snapped Kellar back to the here and now. Christ, he was beautiful, but now was not the time to be perving on the guy. Maybe he’d make his shower a cool one.

Coming out of the bathroom, refreshed, but still in a pensive state of mind after ten minutes under lukewarm spray, it wasn’t a surprise to see Tobyn’s door had remained closed. It would take time to fully process all the ramifications of Tilly’s decision to end their relationship. Was the man really okay? Kellar supposed not, but this time he wasn’t going to intrude. That right wasn’t his. He had some processing of his own to do. After checking on some of the more fragile herbs to gauge their condition, he downed a glass of water and, turning off the lights, headed to his room.

Shutting his own door, he stared at the empty bed, resigned, but not looking forward to sleeping alone this night. Tomorrow was a day of travel, and he had high hopes for everything to go well. The mechanic was not the most pleasant man by any stretch, but maybe that had to do with being on his own. He recalled his colors, and there were clear signs of a depression going on when last he’d seen him.

It was the one thing he couldn’t cure. He had herbs that could help, and he could clear away some of the mottled gray, but it didn’t last. He’d tried it with an injured fox who’d lost his mate to a wire snare, and later with a lone Canada goose who’d been wandering aimlessly around a pond for days. Despite defeating much of the color each time, it returned, and both had ended up wasting away from what he assumed were broken hearts, because neither had anything wrong physically. Not such an abstract concept as it seemed at the time.

Accepting he would be there for Tobyn as a comforting friend, if that was what he would choose, he slid into the bed still holding the scent of the blond man. Just because Tilly had removed herself from the picture, he wasn’t going to hope for more. Tobyn saw himself as a settled family man in the future, and he had to respect that. There would be no forcing a choice on a man like Tobyn. I need to stop going in circles.

Trying, with no success, to sleep, Kellar tossed and turned. Abruptly, he opened his eyes and sat up. Tobyn was standing in the hallway, on the other side of his door, and he was in turmoil. Kellar’s senses were slammed like a heavy slap to the face, and he held his breath, suspecting this could be a watershed moment for both of them. If he walked away, it would speak volumes, and Kellar wasn’t confident he could handle the rejection. Time stretched in agonizing slowness as he stared at the little bit of wood separating them. Like hell he wasn’t hoping for more. A soft knock allowed him to release the air from his lungs.

He needed to replenish his oxygen before he could speak. “Yeah?” he croaked out. “Come in.”

“Sorry. Did I wake you?” Tobyn asked as he opened the door partway.

“No… I wasn’t asleep. Are you doing okay?” Kellar watched as the man with the downcast eyes opened the door further to reveal he was wearing silky, low-riding sleep pants and nothing else. God, that was almost hotter than being naked.

“Yes and no. I’ve gone over it all, again and again, but it gets me nowhere. I mean… I understand why Tilly did what she did, and as much as I hate to admit it, she was right. But, I don’t know where to go from here. My brain won’t fucking settle down.”

Kellar watched and waited for more, but none came. “It’s gotten chilly. This house gets so cool at night. Why don’t you come get under the covers?”

Tobyn raised his head from its position of defeat, and the diffused moonlight made him look ethereally beautiful to Kellar. “I… I don’t want to make things harder for you. I don’t want to….”

“… lead me on? Tobyn, you won’t. I know where you stand, I promise. Spending another night in the same bed means nothing except we’ll both be able to sleep. I understand that. Just like you have to accept the way I feel isn’t going to change in the foreseeable future, but I’m a big boy. I can handle being friends, and I’m not looking to change your mind about what you believe you need to do. What I said before, I meant. Now please, climb in so we can get some rest. Tomorrow is going to be a long day.”

Tobyn was still standing in the doorway, his eyes focused on Kellar’s. “I’m messed up right now, but I don’t know what I’ll do without you if you leave. I’m not sure I could handle that.”

He still wants me here. He never saw me as the bad guy. Kellar had to force another lump down in his throat as the hesitant man finally moved closer and slipped in the vacant side. “I already told you I’m going to do my best to be here for you, so don’t worry about me leaving. We take it one day at a time, remember?”

“Yeah. I remember. Thank you.”

Kellar reached over and ruffled the sandy hair on the pillow next to him, and felt a shiver at his touch. “Is this better?”

“Much.” Tobyn yawned and turned from his back to his side, facing Kellar. “Being near you calms me down. I don’t know why, but it works every time.” He yawned again.

“Ditto,” he admitted, and it was only partly a fib, as his cock rose off his belly. Dammit. He should have worn underwear. It didn’t matter though, because soft snores were soon coming from the man beside him. If he let them, it wouldn’t be difficult for tears to form as he looked at the already tousled blond head. Yes, it does work every time, Tobyn. There are none so blind as those who will not see. Earth Mother… please help him see.

Taking a few deep breaths, he forced himself to relax. It didn’t last long, though. He couldn’t stem the tide of emotions when Tobyn burrowed into his side a scant few minutes later, a hand cupping his bicep. Filled with a dangerous elation, Kellar carefully lifted his captured arm and wrapped it around the sleeping man, resulting in him moving nearer. His head soon found Kellar’s chest, and both men, one sleeping and one awake, sighed with the same contentment. If only it could always be like this.

There had been something in Tobyn’s expression just before he’d gotten into bed. He couldn’t afford to read anything into that look, but… the man hadn’t turned away from his door. He thought about his earlier words to the person he held close. One day at a time. Yawning, he touched his lips to silken strands of scent-laden gold, before joining the man in well-earned slumber.

Thank you to my editor, Timothy M., and to all those who support this story. Cheers!

Copyright © 2017 Headstall; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.

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Of all the ways the situation with Tilly could have happened, I like this outcome. Kellar is the closest to altruistic as a person could be, although, whether or not he admits it, he's waiting for Tobyn to come around. I assume he will get there eventually. Probably the long way. There are some things you keep hinting at that I'm excited for.

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You are such a tease, young Headstall. Got to love the big wolf even if he is as frustrating as Tobyn.

 

The maelstrom of emotions in poor Tobyn is screaming out. I still wish I knew what Tilly said to Kellar. Kellar vomiting at being away from Tobyn, the two of them sleeping better together, seriously could the eathmother make it any more obvious?

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Love is so...bigger than the whole universe and just as diverse!
Even though you know, or hope, that things are going to turn out in the end you can't help but feel for Kellar. He is way stronger than I ever could be, ever! Helps that it's real love though eh?
Thanks and see you next week!

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Nice work. So much of the feels. I wish I was in a better mental place right now, or I'd write a little more for you. Looking forward to the next one!

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I'm really happy that Tobyn confided in Kellar finally, and that K followed him into the woods instead of walking away. I truly think that T doesn't want to acknowledge that K could be his earth mate, and is ignoring the signs (such as not being able to be apart even to sleep). That acknowledgement would bring with it a whole slew of complications to his careful plans to help save the pack, and species in general. I don't know how much longer he's going to be able to ignore the pull though... or pretend it only means physical attraction.
I'm really looking forward to that road trip in the company of T's very observant mother. I wonder what her thoughts on earth mates is? Does she see them as potential liabilities too?
Next chapter please. :*)

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Gary!!!! do you know what these two are doing to me??? I swear I'm feeling just as flustered as they are! lol Great chapter once again! Looking forward to many many many more.

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Good so I can return the turkey baster then, but for what? I don't think anything will help in this case, except maybe sitting Tobyn down and spelling it out in big letters. But even then maybe not. Somethings cannot be accepted in mere minutes. Nice chapter Gary.

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Well handled key relationship transition, thank you. Tilly and Tobyn and Kellar are staying strong and being true to themselves. It was a painful time, though. Tllly acted responsibly and spoke the truth. Tobyn and Tilly do need to hold out for love. Only she could break away from Tobyn and free him. He was stuck in his old ways of thinking.
The defining statement for me was made by Kellar--" There is no forcing a choice on a man like Tobyn." Tobyn will have to come around and it will take time, new experiences, new knowledge he accepts and new people. He is going to have Kellar to support him and Kellar will work his healing magic on him, I hope the pair will be a force eventually to help the pack recover .
Kellar is not hiding his strong feelings. They will grow together, I feel it is happening as they slept . Moving into Kellar's bed after the turmoil of the day was a positive sign.

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Well, your tag line says it all, G-Man.
The upcoming trip to the mechanic is going to be interesting, but will it be successful? A lone wolf should rejoice in finding others of his kind, but with the history of your world, a gathering of kindred souls promotes fear of discovery rather than reassurance. I have to wonder how the Hunters can locate lycans so easily--what aren't you telling us? Then again, if there is some way, why hasn't the Pack been finished off years ago?
I guess we all know what herb can relieve depression for a short time.... :)
I'm wondering if Kellar's reactions are due to stress on top of the maturing bond, since Tobyn doesn't seem to feel it as strongly? After all, he hasn't thrown up like Kellar has.
More please, my dear friend. xoxo

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On 08/02/2016 09:08 AM, C. When said:

Of all the ways the situation with Tilly could have happened, I like this outcome. Kellar is the closest to altruistic as a person could be, although, whether or not he admits it, he's waiting for Tobyn to come around. I assume he will get there eventually. Probably the long way. There are some things you keep hinting at that I'm excited for.

Thanks, C. When. I'm pleased you liked how this situation went. Yeah, Kellar's kidding himself at the same time he's torturing himself. He's hoping, for sure. And yes, this story has some subtle, shall we say, clues... It's my first time writing in a mystery genre... it's fun. Thanks for the great review, and your support... cheers... Gary....

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On 08/02/2016 09:30 AM, dughlas said:

"none so blind as those who will not see"

 

Nicely conceived chapter.

Thanks, dugh! Tobyn is choosing to ignore what he thinks can't be correct in today's age. He's convinced himself of something as a form of protection from disappointment... at least I think that's an element of his "will not see" approach. I appreciate the support, as always, my friend... cheers... Gary...

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On 08/02/2016 09:31 AM, Bucket1 said:

You are such a tease, young Headstall. Got to love the big wolf even if he is as frustrating as Tobyn.

 

The maelstrom of emotions in poor Tobyn is screaming out. I still wish I knew what Tilly said to Kellar. Kellar vomiting at being away from Tobyn, the two of them sleeping better together, seriously could the eathmother make it any more obvious?

He he... guilty... but in my defence, they are both going through a process... when was love ever easy? I wanted all of us to be inside Kellar's head as he dealt with all this uncertainty, and feel what he was feeling. Talk about frustration... the big wolf is a hurting unit... and so is Tobyn... hang in there... the next chapter is... well... you'll see... thanks buddy... cheers... Gary....

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On 08/02/2016 09:40 AM, Buz said:

Love is so...bigger than the whole universe and just as diverse!

Even though you know, or hope, that things are going to turn out in the end you can't help but feel for Kellar. He is way stronger than I ever could be, ever! Helps that it's real love though eh?

Thanks and see you next week!

Thanks, Buz! There's nothing bigger... or more diverse. I'm glad you felt for Kellar in this one. I wanted us to go through his torture along with him. He is one tough cookie... and he loves the sandy wolf so much... he would let him go... he means that... Thanks so much for a great review, and the support... hold on to your hat... cheers... Gary...

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On 08/02/2016 10:54 AM, Lux Apollo said:

Nice work. So much of the feels. I wish I was in a better mental place right now, or I'd write a little more for you. Looking forward to the next one!

No problem, buddy... this is more than enough. Hope you're feeling better. Thanks for the constant support... this was all about the feels... cheers... Gary...

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I like and am enjoying this story but am losing patience with Tobyn. In truth I would much rather see this story mothballed for a while and have more Cards on the Table.

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Well, Tilly always struck me as a sensible person, so I'm not surprised she made the decision to put an end to their sort of relationship. I'm sure they can work something out to help the pack regarding kids... ;)

 

Kellar is going on hope right now. he might think he can handle being just friends, but it's going to be a mighty hard fall if things wouldn't work out. A gamble worth taking, but still. The road trip will be interesting. What will Mother notice...? Maybe she can talk some sense into her son? I mean a healer brought into the pack must be worth at least two kids...

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On 08/02/2016 01:08 PM, LitLover said:

I'm really happy that Tobyn confided in Kellar finally, and that K followed him into the woods instead of walking away. I truly think that T doesn't want to acknowledge that K could be his earth mate, and is ignoring the signs (such as not being able to be apart even to sleep). That acknowledgement would bring with it a whole slew of complications to his careful plans to help save the pack, and species in general. I don't know how much longer he's going to be able to ignore the pull though... or pretend it only means physical attraction.

I'm really looking forward to that road trip in the company of T's very observant mother. I wonder what her thoughts on earth mates is? Does she see them as potential liabilities too?

Next chapter please. :*)

Hey, Lit. I don't think Kellar had a choice. I have to hand it to the guy to wait as long as he did. Tobyn's attitudes about earth mates is ingrained... he sees them as part of the problem... I think Fendral wolfing out really affected him, as in hurt him. I believe that is what started him thinking he was responsible for saving the pack. So much pressure for a youngster to take on in his head. So yeah, you're right... he sees it as a huge complication he wants no part of. Yet... there is Kellar. The road trip is up next... should be interesting... someone will certainly be observing... thanks for the support and the great review... cheers... Gary....

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On 08/02/2016 01:24 PM, JayT said:

Gary!!!! do you know what these two are doing to me??? I swear I'm feeling just as flustered as they are! lol Great chapter once again! Looking forward to many many many more.

LOL... thanks, jt! I understand you being flustered... I wanted all of us suffering along with Kellar... inside his head... I think it worked :) . Next one is up soon, buddy... thanks for the support, and the review... cheers... Gary....

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On 08/02/2016 07:04 PM, Mikiesboy said:

Good so I can return the turkey baster then, but for what? I don't think anything will help in this case, except maybe sitting Tobyn down and spelling it out in big letters. But even then maybe not. Somethings cannot be accepted in mere minutes. Nice chapter Gary.

He he. Yeah... looks like you can return it. Tobyn just got slammed, but look at who he was concerned about at the lookout... and who he went to for comfort and sleep... Tobyn won't loosen the tight grip he has on his self-induced feelings of obligation to the pack, but he's being as open as he can be... road trip next... thanks, my friend, for your support, and for making me smile... cheers... Gary....

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On 08/02/2016 09:17 PM, scrubber6620 said:

Well handled key relationship transition, thank you. Tilly and Tobyn and Kellar are staying strong and being true to themselves. It was a painful time, though. Tllly acted responsibly and spoke the truth. Tobyn and Tilly do need to hold out for love. Only she could break away from Tobyn and free him. He was stuck in his old ways of thinking.

The defining statement for me was made by Kellar--" There is no forcing a choice on a man like Tobyn." Tobyn will have to come around and it will take time, new experiences, new knowledge he accepts and new people. He is going to have Kellar to support him and Kellar will work his healing magic on him, I hope the pair will be a force eventually to help the pack recover .

Kellar is not hiding his strong feelings. They will grow together, I feel it is happening as they slept . Moving into Kellar's bed after the turmoil of the day was a positive sign.

Thanks, scrubber! I'm glad you thought well of it, and I'm very pleased you keyed in on that line. Tobyn can't be forced, and Kellar understands that. That's who Tobyn is, and yeah, they are all being true to themselves. And you're right again. I saw Tobyn showing up at Kellar's door after what happened as a positive sigh too... thanks for the great review, and your support, buddy... cheers... Gary...

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On 08/02/2016 10:11 PM, Kitt said:

:2thumbs:

Thank you, Kitt. If you liked it, then I am happy :) . Cheers, my friend... Gary....

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On 08/03/2016 06:56 AM, ColumbusGuy said:

Well, your tag line says it all, G-Man.

The upcoming trip to the mechanic is going to be interesting, but will it be successful? A lone wolf should rejoice in finding others of his kind, but with the history of your world, a gathering of kindred souls promotes fear of discovery rather than reassurance. I have to wonder how the Hunters can locate lycans so easily--what aren't you telling us? Then again, if there is some way, why hasn't the Pack been finished off years ago?

I guess we all know what herb can relieve depression for a short time.... :)

I'm wondering if Kellar's reactions are due to stress on top of the maturing bond, since Tobyn doesn't seem to feel it as strongly? After all, he hasn't thrown up like Kellar has.

More please, my dear friend. xoxo

Hey, CG! Sorry for the delay... my life has been crazy the last few days. You always ask great questions, but I'm staying mum, my friend :) . I think the agony of not knowing what happened... his concern for Tobyn... was what made him vomit... he was definitely stressed... and Tobyn's feeling it... he just won't give in to it... thanks, as always, buddy... cheers... Gary...

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On 08/03/2016 01:32 PM, avidreadr said:

I like and am enjoying this story but am losing patience with Tobyn. In truth I would much rather see this story mothballed for a while and have more Cards on the Table.

Hey, avid. I totally understand. Tobyn is a frustrating character to write, but he's a damn good man. I hope you will stick with him and the story... I would love to get back to COTT too, but I need to finish this one first... it's too hard to write two at the same time... but I'm on chapter 31 now. I'll be interested to see what you think after the next few chapters... thanks so much for the honest appraisal... I appreciate it, and your support... cheers... Gary....

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