Lara told him one morning as they were lying in bed. His heart thudded in his chest, emotion catching in his throat.
Even in the Net – under Silence – he had felt this. A small joy. But now...
Now it threatened to overwhelm him, to consume him.
Walker Lauren could do nothing but grin.
He spoke with Judd and Marlee and they agreed. He knew Judd would. His brother's mind had always been an impenetrable fortress but Walker knew how the former Arrow thought.
Knew how much defection had cost.
Marlee was so young. Walker wasn't entirely sure his daughter knew what he was asking. The weight, the gravity of it all.
But she'd said yes, gazing up at him with a smile that said she only wanted her father happy.
Later, he spoke with Sienna and Toby. They had the final say. He would not go against their decision. His niece had changed the pack, changed him, when she had gone critical. The blow should have taken them and the continent they stood on with her. But here they were stronger than ever.
Sienna did not hesitate in approving.
Toby hugged him with a fierceness that he could have never understood while Silent. Permission enough.
He found Lara in the infirmary, gazing down at the withered, comatose form of Alice Eldridge. Lara was in such concentration that she didn't notice he was there until he slid his arms around her from behind.
Even after defection he had never understood the changelings' touch-hunger. Not until Lara. Now it was almost a compulsion. When he was near her, he had to touch her. To do anything else was like cutting off a limb.
His arms curled around her stomach and he rested his chin on her shoulder. "I would like," he said quietly, "to call our daughter Kristine."
Lara twisted in his arms, turning to face him. "Yes," she breathed, kissing him. "Of course."