Chapter 3: Adopted to a new clan pt.2
“You are weak, Brother…” Reagan stood over me. “It’s pitiful that our father would let someone like you live…” He is walking toward me… I crawled back as he got closer… There is no way… “What’s the matter, brother? Can you fight me like a man?”
I struggle to say anything back to my brother… I know full well there is nothing I can do or say that will get him to stop. My brother has taken me away from the view of others within the clan. It is his way of ‘toughen’ me up, but…
He grabbed me by the arm and slice across my chest. The pain was surging throughout my body. It was-
“Look! He bleeds too easily!” He smiling as I grew weaker with the amount of blood pouring out of me. Then, he broke my right arm. I screamed as my brother was taking in the pleasure of causing me as much misery as he can. “You are weak! And you will be nothing but an Ill-omen!”
“You monster!” I screamed as he went to break my other arm.
“I can do whatever I want, brother. And there is nothing you can do about it. Father should have simply thrown you out the first chance he got.” He transformed into his full wolf form. “And now I will finish what ‘my’ father should have done long ago!” The world was getting dark around me as I recalled Reagan gone for the killing strike.
A dream or a nightmare?
I woke up to find myself in a medical facility; I look around in a daze to get the sight of my bearings. Where am I?
“Easy! Mr. Dewalt.” A nurse came over to me. She had scars on her face. She gently pushes me back to the bed. “You were out for 3 days, you are safe here.”
“Safe from whom?” My curiosity has peaked.
“You and your group were being attacked by rogues. We learned from Angharad that your father has broken your bones and legs. We used our magic to heal them up where they can recover on their own.”
“Wait… Is this Mourning Ridge clan?” I quickly noticed that this is Alpha McSald’s Territory. “I have heard about you guys. You have mystics among you, correct?”
The woman let out a hearty laugh as she carried me to a… wheelchair?
“That is correct, Mr. Dewalt!” Her easy-going demeanor took aback me. “And these scars, if you were wondering… I had to fight a group of rogues long ago. Killed some of my patients and I’ve killed some of them back.”
“That explains you are one tough cookie, miss.”
“Surprised? Everyone in the clan looked out for each other and even the nurses can fight back.” I looked away the moment she mention ‘clan’.
“My clan… disowned me...” I trailed off.
“Disowned you? Why would they do that?”
“BECAUSE I AM WEAK AND WORTHLESS TO THEM!” I snapped at her. “DON’T HAVE A WOLF INSIDE OF ME, MY FAMILY WANTED NOTHING TO DO WITH ME. NOT TO MENTION THAT MY FATHER HAS TRIED TO KILL ME.” Tears were falling over my face. “I should have died enough ago... ” The woman grab me by the shoulder and shook me back.
“I disagree, sir! You are not that worthless!”
“You don’t know me…”
“No… But I know you have people that cared about you and a spirit that never left your side.”
“A spirit? You mean…?”
“Fenrir, was it? He went out for a bit to speak with Angharad, our local shaman, and consul to our Alpha.”
“Shaman? They are the spiritual guides of the clan where they help the Alphas and the community. They work with spiritual and political matters.”
“And have a lot of power and influence from that role. But we choose our shaman carefully and they don’t interfere unless they need to.”
“Like becoming Alpha?”
“No, boy! But we picked the right person for the job.” Angharad! I move my wheelchair to meet with her.
“Angharad! Are you all right?” I saw Fenrir beside her and-
“So this must be this ‘ill-omen’?” I moved back from the large, imposing man with tattoos on his body.
“George! You are scaring this young man! He has been through enough hell as it is!” The nurse had scolded him for not knowing.
“I’m sorry about that, Alice! Had wanted to meet with the young man who was recovering in the facility.” I calmed down when I realize he doesn’t want to harm me. “I am George McSald, Alpha of the Mourning Ridge and you met our nurse, Alice.”
“It… It-It… Nice to meet you, Alpha!” The man chuckled at the mention.
“Please call me, Mr. McSald or George! I only reserved the use for official function.”
“O-Of course!” I scratched the back of my head. “I had forgotten about these things.”
“You didn’t tell him he was going to your successor, Angie! Or you already told him.” Angie? They know each other for a long time…
“Of course, I have told him, George. By the way, how are your sons today? I know your husband has been busy lately.”
“Husband?” I wanted to know.
“We can walk and talk or, in your case, move with the wheelchair.” I don’t know… he seems different from my father and he is friendlier.
“I accept… George.” The man laughed as he strolled me along in my wheelchair.
A walk in the town
Mourning Ridge is a community of Lycans that live in the harmony of nature and magic around them. I saw some humans and vampires living among them, which is a rarity among the Lycan clans. Most communities would tolerate or bar any human or vampire from entering, with some exceptions. Clan McSald is one of the few clans that allows everyone in their midst as long as they don’t cause trouble.
“Ah! Excuse me!” We bump into a woman with long, lush blonde hair and she was wearing a custom-made dress with a red ribbon from behind her head.
“My apologies, my lady.” The lady smiles at me.
“Ah, a Lycan with good manners, oh my!” she beams with pride. “But unfortunately, I am in a hurry. My apologies, Mr. McSald! I wish I can talk a bit more. Tah-Tah!” She is fast… I know vampires can move at high speed in a blink of an eye.
“That is Elerri! One of the clan’s best scientists and doctors. She may be airheaded though but she knows her science.”
“She seems to be a decent sort despite her…” I did a quick gesture with my hand. “Her eccentricity to put it, lightly.”
Me and the Alpha laughed at that… But I can’t help but feel I will meet that woman again. We went by the shops in town and ate a cinnamon bun; I noticed Mr. McSald is acting like a teenager when we were going around town; is he supposed to be the clan’s alpha, right?
I learned from George that he’s been the clan’s alpha for 700 years now; he had 3 grown sons, each of them with their special abilities and their quirks. His husband, Dean, is a skilled striker, a term within the clan to be one of their deadliest warriors, who use hand-to-hand combat to kill their opponents. Ingrid, the mother of the boys, is a renowned sorceress among the clan.
“If I may ask, Mr. McSald? You said about Ingrid being a powerful Lycan sorceress, correct?”
“Yep, she is one of the most powerful sorceresses in the Lycan territories. What? You never encountered Lycans that use magic?” He is smiling in surprise that I never heard of her.
“My brother, Pwyll, who was a historian. He can also use magic.”
“AND HAS THE BEST STORIES TO SHARE BAR NONE!” Whoa! That I didn’t see coming. “Oh, I know your brother. He even had dealings with my wife and they share a lot of knowledge.”
“How did you two come together?”
“It was my husband, Dean, who suggests the idea that we start a family. He wished to have kids of our own.” Curious… Although I am no stranger to two fathers who want to start a family. “I know you are curious, Quinn. Just ask me, for goddess’s sake.”
I took a deep breath. Before I can say anything, I saw a flash of purple energy appear beside us. A woman appears in front of me. She has hair in a ponytail and she has mystical markings over her body…
“Hello, my husband.” She kissed him on the face, which I notice he twitched a bit. “And this must be, Quinn Dewalt.” She smiles when she saw me.
“My lady… It is nice to meet with you.”
“So, Ingrid, what brings you out here? You would usually be at work right now.”
“I would, but then I heard Angharad had a new apprentice. So I wanted to see him for myself.”
“I am nothing special, Ms. McSald. I am appreciative that you were assisting my brother, Pwyll with expanding our knowledge of the world.”
“The Garuda Museum? Oh, yes. Your brother was a charmer, and everyone enjoyed his stories. But I didn’t come to talk about that.” Her reason she wanted to see me stumps me.
“Why me, Ms. McSald? I am…” She raised her hand.
“Just me call me Ingrid, Quinn. I still got a lot of life in me yet. You…” She looks at me in the eyes. “You have the potential to live your life to the fullest. Whining or giving yourself self-doubt will not help you, Mr. Dewalt. Just because you have a crappy childhood where Daddy tried to kill you, doesn’t mean you have to roll over and let people walk all over you. You just haven’t realized that yet, have you?”
I looked down… why did Angharad have chosen me… a failure… a cripple? When she could have chosen some else. I should have died long ago…
“Quinn!” I snapped back to attention. “I have a gift for you.” She showed me a book… ‘The Sorceress’ guide for beginners of ways of magic. I have heard a lot about it. Her books are very popular even among humans, vampires, and Lycans that have the potential for magic.
“My lady…” I am still in shock. “I am not worthy of such a gift.”
“Believe me, Quinn.” George chimes in. “That book helped many people, and it is a best-seller. The best part… it is easy to read.” He turned back to Ingrid. “Oh, I almost forgot! Dean will come back from his training session and I know he’ll be sharing some news.”
“About his fights, I believe? I heard he’ll take over as Alpha while you head for the convention tomorrow morning.”
“It is where all the alphas from different clans come together every 50 years. The king will preside over the meeting.” I remember it well, although my father forbids me to join these meetings.
“Anyway, I’ll need to go. Don’t forget to check out the book when you can, Quinn. You will find it a big help.” She teleported out of view.
“George. Quinn. Can you two come by my hut? Need to discuss something with Quinn.” I heard Angharad’s voice… but how...? “Don’t worry, lads. I can communicate with you by dreams. Sent Padrieo ahead of you to make sure they will be no interruptions on the way”
“That is unnecessary, Wise mother. I can just…”
“I know, Alpha, but I want to make sure that the both of you are safe along the way. I already dealt with one rogue attack, don’t need another headache right now.”
I saw Padrieo wag his tail at us, motion for us to follow.
“Woman, huh?” We resigned ourselves to follow.
“So, you said that you and Dean are Alphas among the pack?” I am curious. Each clan has only one alpha. But for this clan to have two alphas…
“Dean and I started becoming co-alphas after we got married in a public ceremony. Dean wanted to start a family, which I was looking forward to. He introduced me to Ingrid, a powerful sorceress among us and his ex-wife.”
“You can say with me and him, we can get it on between the sheets. Ingrid, however… I don’t exactly have that spark with her.”
“You hate her, sir?” He raised his eyebrows at me.
“No, I don’t hate her, and I have no problems with her being part of our family. I just don’t feel aroused by the company of women. Dean, however, he doesn’t have a problem with it.”
“You had 3 sons?”
“The eldest has the power of magic, gotten his looks from his mother and some of her attitude. He ain’t bad, just ambitious.” I’ve listened to George as we talking about his kids. “The middle child is a red-head with a ferocious temper and is closer to his other father than to me. I tell ya that he gets into fights.”
“The younger brother?”
“He can warp reality to his will and he takes up after me in terms of strength. He is quite popular and is the peacemaker of the 3.”
“They fight?” It reminds me of my family and our relationship.
Aside from Pwyll and Tilda, who looked out for me… I was never close to the rest of my clan or my family. Reagan would often beat me. My clanmen would often make me into one of their targets by attacking me. Nathaniel… Is far worse since his ‘prank’ was luring me into an area where a feral rogue Lycan was lying and waiting for me.
Had it not been for the intervention of Big sis, I would have died back then. Ever since I took to staying indoors or working with Pwyll since I’ve trusted no one again after that.
“Quinn?” He shook me out of my thoughts. “Something wrong?”
“It’s nothing.” I noticed we were at her hut on the edge of the village. I notice that someone else is already speaking with her.
I saw a man with red flaming hair with define muscles; he had many tattoos, including a horse on it. He also had fighting gloves on… That’s Dean!
“Okay, but know this, Angie! That I will run the clan in my husband’s absence.” It looks like it seems like they were wrapping up. “Speak of the devil… Hey, Georgie!” The two men locked lips with each other and caress each other.
“Wow!” I was surprised that even the men show tenderness toward each other.
“What? Surprised by our relationship, huh?” The man turned his attention back to me.
“O-Oh, what? No, I mean…”
“Be a man! You saw us kissing each other. Do you have a problem with that?!” The man is intense… I can feel the rage pouring out of him.
“N-N-No Sir! I don’t. Just surprised, that is all.” He relaxed his muscles.
“So, this is the fucking wimp, Angie? I was hoping he’ll be-”
“OKAY, WHAT?!” I had enough. “I ALREADY HAD MY FATHER TRYING TO KILL ME, MY CLAN WANTED NOTHING TO DO WITH ME AND HAD MY BONES BROKE WITH THE ROGUES COMING AFTER MY LIFE BECAUSE I AM HER APPRENTICE. WHAT THE FUCK IS YOUR PROBLEM?!” It surprised me that what I said came out of my mouth which the man saw that he crossed a line.
“Yet, you still live. You have a fighting spirit, kid.” I was wary when the man approaches me. I might have made a mistake in speaking out. “If you were one of our kids, I wouldn’t be playing favorites. I would have you become the best you can be.”
“Call me Dean McSald or Alpha, whatever floats your fucking boat, Quinn. Don’t give up, you hear? I’ll be hoping you’ll stay with us for a long time, if possible. Just holler all right?”
“Wow, hubby! I didn’t think I would run into you.”
“I came by to make sure I run the clan, Georgie, while you’re gone at the convention.”
“Yeah…” He nods.
“Um, Georgie? That is a nickname, right?” Now Dean is giving me that glare. “Sorry, I meant George.”
“Yeah, he doesn’t like anyone but him calling me that.”
“You act like I’m jealous of him.” He crossed his arms at George, who blushes at the whole thing. “Anyway, I need to head to the hall. I need to speak with the Betas soon and get a thing in order. I’ll be seeing ya.” He took some steps before turning around. “You coming, Georgie?”
“Take care, Quinn.” George went with his husband while I went inside with Angharad.
As we moved inside of her hut, it was spacious… they were relics of a hawk, bear, wolf, panther, and bull replicas. There is a large campfire in the middle. Flames were roaring still. Other than that, it had an oven, microwave, and refrigerator, but that is it.
“Time to answer your questions, Quinn. I know you wanted to know why I’ve selected you as my apprentice.” She got straight to the point.
“Why me? They were other candidates who are more capable than I am? I don’t even have a wolf inside of me.” Fenrir? He came out of nowhere… He said nothing. I resumed when no one spoke up for a while. “I am not a suitable apprentice. You have chosen the wrong man for the job. Let me head back to my clan and die. I don’t want to be a cripple and I never asked for this.”
“Is that what you want to do, Quinn?” She looks as if she knows my pain. “By going back, they are no guarantee I could intervene the 2nd time. Your father has exiled you, boy… Why do you want to back with them?”
“I have Pwyll and Tilda as my family.” Tears streamed down my face. “I can’t just leave my clan behind!”
“I know Pwyll is a pleasant fellow at heart, and Tilda is one of the best swift runners among the clan. Did you know…?” I turned away from her…
“Mira should have ended my life instead of bringing me here… She’s right. I am worthless.” I curse myself, as the memories have been too much for me.
Ever since I was born, the sayers declare me an ‘Ill-omen’, stating that I should have died instead and told my father to abandon me or have me killed. Throughout my life, I have tried, and I have Tried… to awaken the wolf that is inside of me. Nothing would please my father, Nathaniel and Reagan would tease and bullied me because I don’t have the power to fight back…
Even the kids got their transformation before I did while I struggle with mine… I didn’t have the strength, speed, or ferocity like a Lycan, moved like a human. Would get cut and bleed easily. Wounds would take forever to heal up and, of course, my bones are brittle since they aren’t durable as the others. My father knew all of this… and he did nothing about it!
“Quinn, Master.” Fenrir is in front of me… “This is your decision. Do you want to back home?” Home…
“Why did you call me your master? I have no control over you and I don’t wish to do so.”
“Because I promise your mentor that I will assist you during your training. This is ultimately your decision, Master. No one can make you do it.”
“I’m heading home.” Fenrir stops from me moving.
“Sir. If you go back, you will die. Angharad and I cannot aid you again if you do. You even suffered a lot from your clansman, and even Tilda and Pwyll will not always be there to help you. Your father even tried to kill you. Do you think it is wise to return to a place where you nearly died?” Fenrir…
“I… I…” Fenrir is looking into my eyes as if he understood what I’ve been through. Yet, he feels familiar… Something is strange here… “I don’t know, Fenrir.” I shook my head out of my thoughts.
“Take as much time as you need, Quinn. I will be here in my hut, whatever you want to remain or leave. But before you do, know this.” Angharad took me by hands and knelt toward me. “I have little time left. I still have years in me left and I can’t tell what the future will hold for me. They aren’t anyone else that has the potential that you have.”
“I have assisted her in the search, Master. To find suitable candidates that can take up the reins, she is ill.” What?
“Oh, Fenrir! Did you have to make it that dire enough that is like a death sentence? I swear-” She coughed… I noticed they are some blood on her hand. “I’ll be right.”
“We’ll return tomorrow, wise woman. This I swear to you.” Fenrir did a bow… for a spirit, I feel he is trustworthy. “Shall we, Master?”
“To go where?” I asked him as Fenrir ran off outside. “I am coming.”