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Keep Her

Summary:
Sequel to Protect Her, Love Her, and Hold Her. Claire is a medical intern. She and Quil are deeply in love, but he's still haunted by ghosts that whisper one word... failure. Will he overcome his fears and regrets to take the next step? Will their truest of loves ever bind them into one?


Notes:
Read the prequels first. And review them! This series has the sixth most reviews out of any on the site, and i'm angling for first. ambitious, right? so review a lot! i'm pretty shameless, but i will never withhold a written chapter to get reviews. however, my life is full and i am writing lots of little sidefics, not to mention a novel, a full-length play, and an award-winning-to-be compilation of original short works. oh, and school, but that's not important. EXPECT updates twice a week. they often come as soon as twice, three, once even SEVEN times a day. i'm good, i know. but when this happens, i expect rewards, in the form of reviews. and i own nothing.


1. Chapter 1

Rating 5/5   Word Count 583   Review this Chapter

Claire’s graduation day.

I had never, never been so proud. Eight years of hard work and this day was finally here…

Wow. Claire was twenty seven. An adult. She still seemed like a child to me sometimes, the child I had loved first. But I loved her. I would love everything she ever became.

When her name was called, I embarrassed her, and probably myself, by springing to my feet and clapping as long and loud as I could. “Claire! Woo hoo!!!!”

The women on either side of me elbowed my sides. I didn’t even notice.

Claire grinned just for me.

I grinned back. My every smile was hers.

And then they gave her the diploma.

I saw that longed-for scroll in her hand, and I couldn’t restrain myself, I shouted over the crowd “Go Claire! I love you!”

She turned her face to the ground and muttered something. It was probably either a curse or a threat, given the circumstances. Finally, she decided on the one thing that could change my mind. She looked up, right into my eyes. It was like there was no one else, not thousands of people, gathered round. They all just fell away. The world was her, and I was permitted to be on it.

I was so lucky.

I sat down.

Claire smiled. Dang it! That girl always wins. Poo.

I was tempted to stand up just to prove I didn’t always do what she asked the instant she asked it, but I didn’t, because I did always do what she asked, and it would annoy her- an even worse offence after seven years of being banned from apologizing.

Seven glorious, blissfully happy years- but seven years. And she was right, I knew that- but it was hard to resist the urge of the sinner to throw himself at the saint’s perfect feet. I wanted to, but I knew I had to be strong. I had to earn her forgiveness, not just ask it.

That was one of the things our relationship was built upon.

And I loved it.

We weren’t like everyone else. We didn’t seek out sorry, we sought to get better, and everything we did, we did together.

We weren’t married yet. I hadn’t worked up the nerves to ask, though I desperately wanted to. Maybe now that she was going to become an intern, one step closer- only three years away- from her dream, I could.

I doubted it.

And, though it’s difficult to reckon werewolf ages, by more than one way of counting and certainly by chronological time, I had the not-so-proud and extremely secret title of Forty-Year-Old-Virgin.

Embry’s long-ago taunt had come true with a vengeance.

I understood, and had always known, that if that could ever happen between us (and for me there was no one else and never had been) we would have to be married first. I don’t think we ever discussed it, it was more of a feeling. I’m better, but not that. I love you, but not that.

I would never pressure her for anything she didn’t want to give me.

Claire was the one who defined me. I worshipped her.

As she threw a black cap into the air, my love blinded me. This exquisite creature, and she is mine…

How on earth did I get so lucky?