Blair stared out of the passenger window as she watched the trees race by. This is the last place she wanted to be going back to, but she was duty-bound to obey. Though she was a lone wolf, she still had a connection to her old pack. Otherwise, she would have been a rogue and most likely feral by now. It had been almost five years since that night, and it still felt like a raw wound, not that she wanted Sebastian any longer. He was never hers, to begin with, but the rejection from that night was still intense, and the consequences were long reaching. She looked to her left to see the beta of their pack Samuel; he had come to retrieve her early this morning, and she could not refuse a summons from the Alpha. The Alpha king and his family were to visit, and all were required to be in attendance. To not attend would be a show of extreme disrespect.
Sam had not said a word to her since she had let him into the tiny apartment, and he had explained that it was time to go home. He was not a harsh man, but neither was he open and kind, in his late forties with blond hair and blue eyes. Gray streaked through the blond to suggest his age, for his face was almost flawless. His jaw seemed like it was chiseled from stone; his slightly crooked nose had been broken before, lending the only imperfection to his face. High cheekbones and round almost crystal blue eyes completed the almost perfect face. He stood at six-foot-for; his muscles from long hours of training were impressive. He had never found his mate and did not seem to maintain close ties. Though he was loyal to the pack without fail, Blair sighed. It was going to be a long two hours.
Blair fell asleep quickly, but her dreams brought no peace. Only sadness and intense pain.
*5 years ago, *
Blair looked at herself in the mirror, looking at her flushed face, and contemplated crawling back into bed. Her head was pounding, and her body ached, but she forced herself to get ready for school. It was finals week of her senior year, and all she needed to do was push through these last three days. She sighed as she walked to the bathroom to get ready. She put her raven black hair up in a messy bun and began her routine. The more she moved, the worse it was getting, but she pushed on and got dressed before running down the steps of the pack house. She had moved here when she lost her mother two years ago to illness. Her father had been killed in a rogue attack when she was seven. She made it through the front door and squinted as the sun made her head pound. She trudged on to the pack school, but not even halfway there, she was brought to her knees by intense pain. Whimpering until the pain passed, she slowly rose, but her joints felt like they were on fire. Pretty sure she knew what was going on now. She made her way to the tree line as quickly as her body would allow. She was finally going to meet her wolf. Almost at the tree line, another intense pain hit, this time in her abdomen, and she doubled over and hit the ground, rolling into the tree line. She dragged herself as far as she could before she began feeling her bones start to shift and crack. She muffled her scream into her arm before everything went dark.
When she came to, she opened her eyes and began to move tentatively, but there was no longer any pain. She stood up on her four paws and did a little spin trying to see her tail. She could feel her wolf in the back of her mind as she gave a huff of amusement. Walking farther into the trees, she eventually found a stream where she decided to stop and drink. As she was pulling away, she noticed something that made her pause. She had raven black fur just like her hair, but in the middle of her forehead, there was a silver half Crescent moon. Tilting her head to the side as she watched, she wondered if what her mother said when she did not turn at the age of sixteen was true. Her mother told her she would turn one day but that it must be a secret as people will come looking for her. She could only tell her true mate.
Blair ran in wolf form for the rest of the day; eventually finding a cache of clothes that are kept hidden around the territory. She put the too-big t-shirt over her head, and it hit her knees. Deciding to leave the sweatpants behind, she ran for the pack house in the dark. Quietly going in through the back door, she ran up the steps and runs into a solid wall that just happened to be human. He reached out to steady her, but when his hands touched her, it was like an electric current was running between them.
They locked eyes, his brown to her green, and her wolf chanted. “MATE! MATE! MATE!” From inside her mind.
Blair sucked in a breath; before her stood Sebastian Grayson, future Alpha of the Bloodstone pack. He was not overly tall for a wolf; just over six-foot. His body was toned from time spent at the gym. His eyes changed from brown to amber as he pushed her against the wall and took her mouth in a harsh kiss. His hand slowly slid up her right thigh, lifting the t-shirt as he went. Abruptly, he pulled away, leaving her gasping for air.
When he turned to look back, his eyes were back to brown, but they were as cold as ice. She flinched away from his gaze. “Look at me,” he commanded, and her gaze flew to his face. “I Sebastian Grayson future Alpha of the Bloodstone pack reject you, Blair Cavanaugh, as my mate and Luna.” It felt like a knife to the heart, and she almost collapsed to her knees. The pain was so intense.
She forced herself to stand straight and look him in the eye as she said, “I Blair Cavanaugh, accept your rejection as your mate and Luna.” This time, she did collapse onto the stairs as Sebastian looked down on her.
“This pack will never have a wolfless Luna.” With that, he left her on the stairs.
Eventually, she found the strength to move up the rest of the stairs and to her room. She was beginning to feel uncomfortable and just wanted to crawl into bed and forget that today ever happened. She reached her room and collapsed onto the bed still in the oversized t-shirt. Quickly falling asleep with the tears still running down her face.
She woke in the middle of the night, and her body was on fire. It felt like acid in her veins and an unbearable cramping in her stomach. Closing her eyes again, she gathered her strength to move into her bathroom. She slowly made it to the tub and opened the cold water tap fully. Pulling herself over the lip of the tub, she submerged herself as much as she could, the t-shirt still on as the tub continues to fill. She knew she was in Heat and that it could last for days without Sebastian. Reaching up, she turned the tap off and laid back as her body began to shake, her stomach clenching. Aching for something she can never have. Unsure how long she had been laying there, she began to think about getting out when she felt a sharp stab of pain in her abdomen. She curled into a ball as it continued to get worse. Trying not to scream out, she pulled herself from the tub as another wave of stabbing pains hit. Sebastian was with another woman. That was her last thought before everything went dark.
Blair jolted awake and took in her surroundings. They were about 30 minutes from the pack. She took a sidelong glance at Sam to make sure he wasn’t paying attention. He seemed to still be focused on the road. Letting out the breath she had been holding, she thought back to that time. She had been in Heat for five days, begging illness as an excuse. She had turned on her 18th birthday.
When she had fully recovered, she requested an audience with Alpha Grayson. He was very surprised by her lone wolf request but granted it to her when she said she would leave the pack and go rogue. Alpha Grayson knew something had happened, but he was unable to uncover what, and Blair refused to talk about it. So, it was agreed she would take her make-up finals, and then she would leave for an apartment in a city far enough away that she felt comfortable. She would start college in the fall.
She never looked back, and the only reminder was the heat she felt every month. She had long ago stopped feeling when Sebastian was with someone else as the bond weakened, but once triggered, the Heat would return each month unless the mating was completed. Since that was never going to happen, she had learned to live with it. The intensity had died down as the bond weakened.
Rejection was unheard of in their world. Your mate was supposed to be a gift from the goddess Selene. Sebastian threw that away years ago, and she suffered all the consequences. She felt nothing for him now except resentment. The pull long gone, she just wanted to get through the week with the royals and re-register as a lone wolf so she would not be required to come back again for another five years. The closer they got, the more tense she became until she was looking at the gates of the Bloodstone pack. She closed her eyes as they began to drive through the gates...