Chapter 23Mature

“You OK, man?”

Alex didn’t respond. Trying to felt like pushing his way through several mental barriers.

Nathan then leaned down to try and see inside the bed. Alex clenched one paw in response as he watched Nathan’s expression. His friend narrowed his eyes as if to try and see inside better.

Hearing what sounded like a few footsteps to his right, he forced himself to say something. “I’m fine.”

Nathan noticeably flinched at the sound of his growl-laced voice; he could hear Marcus make a comment about it afterwards, to which Catherine replied with a worried tone.

“That’s good,” Nathan said. “but that guy…”

“He’s still inside. I heard.”

A quick gust blew fresh scents into the bed of the truck. Among them was the fear scent from his friend, less intense than it was before. From where he was, Alex could see Nathan’s arms starting to tremble a bit. “He didn’t say anything to us as we left. No looks either.”

“He wouldn’t need to. He can smell you.” Alex replied.

“So, what now?” Nathan directed the question towards the others.

“Maybe we can go somewhere else?” Catherine said.

“Like where? Around here?” Marcus asked.

“A park or something.”

Marcus sighed. “Then, I’m getting our meals and our stuff. We’ll eat out here for now.”

“Marcus, hold on.” Alex said, almost crawling towards the rear of the bed. His initial thought was to discourage him from walking back inside the restaurant. The guilt riding his mental processes got him to stall. The longer he sat on it, the worse that idea seemed.

“What?” Marcus asked. He didn’t sound angry.

Alex let his jaws open slightly, letting him breathe easier. His heart pounding, he stalled further before getting one word out. “Don’t let him think you’re scared of him if you do that.”

 “I’m not. I’ll be back.” A few seconds later, the front doorbell sounded to Steakhouse.

The End

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