Novel Name : Beautiful Creatures Series

Chapter 21: 19

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It had been four weeks since Aurora started her research into opening her own business. Aurora was
determined to make this idea a reality. She had been come obsessive about it. Aurora had always been
on her own and self-reliant. She did whatever it took to make some money just to survive the day. Now
she had a dream. A real job. A way to support herself without having to sell her body. It was important
for her to make this happen. She was tired of simply surviving. She wanted to build a future for herself.
She wanted to be an equal contributor in both the pack and in her relationship with Stanton.

Aurora had spent every waking hour working on a business plan. She had rehearsed a sales pitch and
everything in the bathroom mirror. She felt ready to approach the landlord of the storefront and
investors. First, she wanted to test her sales pitch on Gordon. If she could convince him she was worth
investing in, then he would give her the owner’s contact information and introduce her to some people
who might be willing to invest in her business.

She had decided to invite Gordon over for dinner. She would pitch her business plan to him after she
wowed him with her cooking. Men were always more agreeable with a full belly. Stanton had helped
her clean and prep the meal. When Gordon came by, he was alone. Having left his horrible wife
behind. Aurora was ok with Melissa not joining them. Both she and Stanton couldn’t stand that woman.

Aurora had made a big meal. She had been cooking all day. When they all sat down to dinner, it was to
a mouth-watering melt-in-your-mouth bone-in prime rib roast, garlic and herb mashed potatoes, grilled
sweet corn, and a fresh homemade caesar salad with a peach cobbler she made from scratch for

After dinner, they sat in the sitting room, sharing a beer while Aurora made her pitch. She was excited
and nervous that he might tell her she hadn’t done enough homework. When she was finished, Aurora
bit her bottom lip as she anxiously awaited his response. Gordon sat silent for a moment. “It’s good,”
Gordon told her. A wave of relief washed over Aurora. “It’s a very convincing pitch. You have really
done your homework. The fact that you have already spoken to Lewis about putting a service window

in between your two businesses to maximize both your businesses and he agreed, shows you have
initiative. I’m very impressed with the work you have done thus far. I don’t think you will have any
trouble convincing investors.”

“You really think so?” Aurora asked excitedly. “So, you will introduce me to investors?”

“I will. Since this grocery store will be to benefit the pack, I think it is only fitting that the pack invest in
getting it off the ground. I’ll call a pack meeting in three days. You can make your pitch to the pack all at
once. Pack members always do whatever they can to support pack members and to improve our happy
little community. I’m sure you will raise enough start-up money to get it off the ground. I’ll even chip in
five grand myself.”

“That’s awesome,” Aurora grinned. “So, can I have the number for the owner of the storefront?”

“No need,” Gordon grinned. “I own it.”

Aurora was surprised. “You own it?”

Gordon laughed. “I do. I actually own all the buildings in our little community hub. I bought the land
back in my twenties. When the pack began to grow, I started developing it. I built it into a gathering spot
for the pack. Over time those buildings have been in and out of use. I rent the storefronts to pack
members, like Lewis and his butcher shop, for example,” Aurora was astonished. If he owned the
whole hub, then he must have been monied. One would never know to look at him that this man had
that kind of money.

“Ok, so how much to rent the property?” She asked.

“I’ll make you a deal. That property goes for $3500 per month, but for you, I will give a special rate of
$1200 per month for the first two years while you are getting your business up and running. By year
three, you should be established enough and making enough profit to afford the proper overhead, in

which case we will increase the rent to $3500. On top of the two years of reduced rent, I will invest
$5000 into your business to be paid back at the end of twenty-four months at zero interest. I’ll even
invest my time and labour to help you renovate and get your store ready for opening. How’s that

“It sounds perfect. I don’t know how to thank you.”

“Succeed,” he said, standing up, getting ready to leave. Aurora and Stanton walked Gordon to the door.
“I’ll have the rental contract drawn up by the weekend. I’ll also call the pack meeting in the next few
days, and you will hit the ground running,” Aurora hugged him tight surprising Gordon. He hadn’t been
expecting a hug. He tensed first, then after a second, he relaxed and wrapped his arms around her
hugging her back. It was a brief fatherly kind of hug, and when it was over, they said goodbye, and
Gordon left.

As she closed the door, Aurora turned to see Stanton grinning at her. “Did you know that Gordon
owned the hub?”

“Yeah, I did,” he snickered.

“And you didn’t tell me?”

“I figured there was a reason he hadn’t told you himself. I didn’t want to ruin what he had been

“I can’t believe I’m going to own a business. I’m so thrilled. I hope I can pull it off,” she said, walking
over to him.

Stanton took her in his arms, holding her close, his chin resting on the top of her head. “You are going
to do just fine. I have faith in you. Gordon has faith in you. Have faith in yourself.”


Two months later…

Aurora had secured all the start-up funding she required. When the members of the pack heard she
was trying to bring a convenient organic grocery store to the community, everyone was willing to pitch
in a few bucks. Before she knew it, Aurora had the money secured, and Gordon gave her the keys.
She now stood in her store, cleaning it up and going through it with Darrell for repairs and construction.

Since Darrell was both a general contractor and a personal friend, he offered to do the job at cost. All
she had to pay for where the cost of his supplies and be his onsite helper. Aurora liked the idea of
learning how to do repairs and renovations herself. She had never had a useful skill before, and she
was eager to acquire such skills.

She spent a lot of time with Darrell going to hardware stores. He taught her how to use power tools
safely, and before long, she was knocking out walls and learning the basics. Stanton would come by on
his off hours to lend a hand. She had worked out a deal with Lewis, who owned the butcher shop next
door to put the service window in between their two shops. He had thought it was a great idea that
could only increase his business.

Aurora put as much time as she could into the storefront. They had gotten most of the major repairs
and construction done, and Darrell had built shelves for the merchandise, which he would bring in and
set up in the morning. Now Aurora was busy with the cleanup. She got most of the cleaning done, and
now she was using Darrell’s shop broom to finish cleaning the tile floor they had laid two days ago. She
paused and tried to stretch out her back. She had been working so hard her body ached. She was stiff
and sore all over. She was exhausted and sleepy and had been for a few weeks. She spent so much
time in the shop she barely got any sleep. She often skipped meals, too, which frequently left her
feeling ill. She was running ragged, but Aurora kept telling herself it would all be worth it when she
finally opened her doors to the public.

Once she finished sweeping up this floor, the renovations would officially be complete, and she could
start ordering products in the morning. As she finished up, Aurora heard the door open and close. She
swept up the dirt dumping it into the large steel trashcan Darrell had left behind for her clean up. She
turned to the door and saw Stanford walking in with a bouquet of red roses in one hand and a bottle of
bubbly in the other with two glasses.

Aurora giggled at the sight. “Darrell told me you guys finished up. In a few weeks, you will be open for
business,” Stanton said as he placed the flowers and the glasses on the counter. “I thought we should
celebrate,” he said as he popped the cork. Aurora joined him at the counter, unable to keep the smile
from her face as she watched him pour them each a glass. “Now, this isn’t the expensive stuff. I
couldn’t afford the Dom Pérignon. I hope this stuff tastes good,” Stanton placed the bottle on the
counter and picked up both glasses offering her one. For a big behemoth, Stanton could be rather
sweet when he wanted to be.

They both sipped their champagne, and then Aurora smiled. It was strange where she found herself.
Six months ago, Aurora was a homeless streetwalker. Now she was a small business owner and
maintaining a monogamous relationship with a wonderful man. If it had not been for Stanton, she would
have likely died young in some disgusting alley in some shithole shitty forgotten and written off by the
police as just another dead whore. As she stood there staring up at him, Aurora smiled. She loved this
crazy man.

He had changed her life significantly. In the past few months, he had even been more confident in their
relationship and had stopped worrying about her running off on him. Stanton was actually starting to
treat her as a partner and not some toy he feared another man would take from him. She wanted to…
Aurora frowned; an odd feeling came over her. It wasn’t anything she ever recalled feeling before.
Suddenly Aurora leaned forward and vomited.

Stanton jumped back to avoid being hit by what she brought up. He looked at his still half-full glass with
great curiosity. Lifting it to his nose, he smelled it. “I know it’s not a bottle of Dom, but I didn’t think it

was all that bad.”

“It’s not the champagne,” she said, looking down to see that she had hit the toe of his right boot. “I’m so
sorry. I’ve been feeling a little off lately. I think I’ve been working too hard.”

Stanton looked her over while Aurora gabbed some disposable paper shop towels and got down on her
hands and knees to clean up the mess she had made.

“I see,” Stanton said thoughtfully. “We don’t get sick… unless…” Suddenly, he was grinning. Aurora
finished her clean-up and then stood up, tossing the paper towel into the trash bin.

Aurora looked at his big grin. He knew something she didn’t. Though she had been a lycanthrope all
her life, she had only known for six months. She still didn’t know all the details of what she was. She
still relied on Stanton to explain most things to her. “Unless… what?”

“I think you are pregnant.”

“Are you serious?”


There had to be a way to know for sure. “I’m going to have to go to a doctor to confirm it.”

“No!” Stanton said quickly and sharply. “You can’t go to a human doctor. A couple of tests, and they are
going to know you aren’t human.”

“Then how do I confirm it?”

“We have a midwife.”

“Oh, good, who?”

Stanton frowned. It was as if he did not want to tell her. “You’re not going to like it.”

She had a bad feeling. “Please tell me the midwife is not Melissa.”

“It’s Melissa.”

“Is there another midwife?” Aurora asked, hopefully.

“I’m afraid not.”

Aurora sighed. She really didn’t want to deal with that awful woman, but she needed to know
definitively whether or not she was having a baby. Regrettably, she was going to have to go see


The following morning Stanton took Aurora to Gordon’s house after they knew he would be gone to
work. When they knocked on the door, they plastered fake smiles on their faces trying not to seem like
they hated the woman they had come to see. Melissa answered the door and gave them both a funny
look to find them on her doorstep. “What do you two want?” She snarled at them both.

Nice, Aurora thought, this abusive bitch couldn’t even be civil enough to say hello. “Hello, Melissa,”
Stanton said.

Melissa sighed, exasperated by their presence as she rolled her eyes. “Yeah-yeah, hello. Now, what do
you want?”

Aurora decided to get to the point. The less time she spent with this woman, the happier Aurora would
be. “We suspect I might be pregnant and were hoping you could confirm it.”

“I see. Fifty bucks, cash.”

Aurora was shocked. “Fifty dollars. I could get a home pregnancy test from the pharmacy in town for

“Then go get one of those… oh yeah, it would not work. So, since I’m the only one, you can turn too…
fifty bucks… cash.”

Stanton took out his wallet and offered her three twenty-dollar bills. “Can you make change?”

“No,” Melissa said, snatching the money from his hand. Oh, how Aurora disliked this nasty woman.
Melissa invited them both in and went to a free-standing pantry cabinet. She opened the door, and
Aurora could see that Melissa had all sorts of unusual things in mason jars and a few transparent
disposable plastic cups. She took down a cup and handed it to Aurora, then pointed to the open half
bath just down the hall. “Go pee in this and bring it back.”

“Just pee in the cup?” Aurora asked, unsure.

“Did I stutter?” Aurora snatched the plastic cup and headed into the washroom. She did what she was
told, then she returned and offered it back to Melissa. “Put it on the napkin,” while Aurora was in the
washroom, Melissa had placed a paper napkin on the counter for her to place the cup on. Aurora put it
down and then watched as Melissa took some kind of little round white marble-like object. She did not
know exactly what it was. Aurora watched as Melissa dropped the marble into the urine, and they

Nothing happened.

“Is something supposed to happen?” Aurora asked.

“Wait for it,” Melissa said, never taking her eyes off the cup. All three stared at the marble, and soon
Aurora was surprised to see the white marble turn purple. Melissa smiled. “Congratulations, you two

are having a baby.”

“That’s it? That’s all there is to it? The marble just changes colour?” Aurora asked.

Melissa glared at her. “What do you want it to do, sing and dance?”

“How does that work?”

“Same as the human ones do. When pregnant, the female of our species produces a growth hormone.
This test detects it.”

“How accurate is it?”

“One hundred percent.”

Aurora smiled as her hand moved over her belly. She was going to be a mother. She looked over at
Stanton, who had the biggest grin. “What?” She asked him, suspicious of his great mood.

“Now, you have to marry me.”

“No, I don’t,” she said, then she thanked Melissa, and Aurora left the house with Stanton following her.

“What do you mean, no?” He asked, following her to the SUV. “You are having my baby and living with
me. What more do I have to do to get you to say yes?”

Aurora stopped and faced him. “I want to marry you because you love me and not because you think
you have trapped me.”

“Trapped you?” He said, offended. Aurora gave him a knowing look. “Ok, yes, I have been manipulative
in the past, but God damn it, Hummingbird, you know I love you. I can’t picture myself with anyone but
you. I want to be your mate. Please, Aurora… marry me.”

Aurora stared at Stanton. She did not want to be with anyone else. She loved him, and she wanted to
marry him. Maybe she was too hard on him. He had been doing well for months. Aurora sighed, giving
in. “Ok.”

Stanton looked shocked. “Was that a yes?”

“Well, it wasn’t a no.”

Stanton let out a happy yelp and took Aurora in his arms. He hugged her tight as he spun, swinging
her. “I win. I finally win.”

“Win?” Aurora asked, eyeing him as he put her down.

“Of course. You get me, and I get you. I’m clearly getting the better deal,” he offered her a cheeky grin.
Aurora laughed.

“Want to go home and fool around Big Daddy?”

“Oh, God, I love you,” he said, opening the door for her. “I’ll take the backroads. We will get there in
record time.”

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