“I’m still confused,” Elizabeth muttered. “Charanel is my soul mate?”
“Yes. Your souls are compatible. He loves you already, just like you love him,” Bella smiled, taking Elizabeth’s hands.
My sister pulled her hands back. “Love him? I don’t even know him! I want to know him better, but I can’t say that I love him,” Elizabeth said shortly, shaking her head aggressively. “Plus, I have to hail Harry and tell him that our ‘break’ is more permanent than I thought. I can’t very well start something new until that’s been dealt with. You know?”
“I don’t know,” Bella replied, her head cocked to the side. “I’ve only ever loved Edward.”
“Eddie, please tell me you understand,” Elizabeth whined, taking my hands.
“I do, but until you have had your mating ceremony, you and Charanel must be chaperoned. You cannot kiss until the ceremony. It begins the mating bond and it escalates. Quickly,” I chided.
“Chaperone, ugh! And no kissing,” she mumbled. She sat back on the couch, crossing her legs and pouting slightly. With an angry huff, she relented. “Got it.” She looked at me. “Will our mating ceremony happen as quickly as yours?”
“Probably not, Elizabeth,” Bella answered. “Edward and I are te’atée mates. Our souls were intertwined and needed to fuse, reunite. That coupled with his being human forced our mating ceremony to occur very quickly. According to Marcusi, if we didn’t complete the mating bond within a week after our arrival on Forx, we’d both be dead.”
“And by mating bond, you mean sex,” Elizabeth said, arching a brow. She grinned saucily.
“Yes,” I nodded. “It completes the connection between you and your mate.”
“And with time, that bond becomes stronger,” Bella added. “You’ll have to experience the genetic enhancements like Edward to lengthen your life. It’s a simple injection taken once a month.”
“Whoa! How long do you live?” Elizabeth asked, her eyes wide.
“Between two hundred and two hundred and fifty years,” Bella replied. “And our years are longer than yours, as well.”
“My head is about to explode,” she moaned, leaning forward and massaging her temples. “I can’t …”
The door to my office opened and Charanel barreled through with Senator J’ran on his heels. Charanel sat down next to my sister and tenderly wrapped his arms around her, nuzzling her hair. His spots glowed and my sister snuggled to his side, her arms sliding around his middle. Charanel whispered in Cygnarian, his fingers brushing through her blonde hair. With each caress, Elizabeth settled more. And Charanel started purring. “Do you feel better, Elizabeth?” Bella asked.
“Yeah. Not so out of sorts,” she replied, looking up at Charanel with adoration. He smiled softly, pressing a sweet kiss to her forehead. “Is it because I’m near you?”
Charanel nodded, staring into Elizabeth’s eyes.