We were driving towards the village where our pack was located. We didn’t speak a word since he started driving. He didn’t seem bothered nor tense and it was driving me crazy.
“You know, our friends died there trying to free us... Doesn’t that mean something to you?!” My voice was cracking but I didn’t care. I was furious. Ron was one of my dearest friends, we met during World War II and Gabriel didn’t even flinch while jumping through his dead body. While running through that bloody street I saw a few more familiar faces, all were dear friends of mine but I was glad that Dominic, my brother wasn’t there.
“Look, Destiny. I’m devastated over the fact that it came to this but every war has its casualties, OK? It’s not like you didn’t see any wars before. You’ll have to get used to sights like this anyways because I have a feeling that from now on there will be a lot more merciless killing...” He tried to keep a straight face but I still saw a wrinkle of worry on his forehead. It seemed like he cared a bit after all. I didn’t question him, I knew he was right. I was there when World War I broke out and I was a pilot during World War II. I saw my fair share of battles, blood and killing so this shouldn’t bother me that much but again, seeing your family on the floor with limbs torn out, guts hanging from their body, huge gaping holes in their neck... I suddenly felt sick to my stomach.
“Gabe, stop the car...” I whispered and it seemed as if he didn’t hear me so I started repeating myself over and over again until my words came out in shouts “Stop the car, Gabe! Stop the fucking car!” He stepped on the breaks and the tires started screeching. I jumped out as soon as the car stopped, crouched over and even though I had nothing in my stomach, I started throwing up and some yellow foam-like liquid came up. It was bitter but it didn’t stop a second wave to was over my mouth and fall onto the ground in front of me. I felt Gabriel’s hand on my forehead and a cold wet paper towel on the back of my neck. At that moment I wanted to push him away because any kind of closeness was too much and overwhelming but a third wave of yellow foam came through my throat, burning its way up and I was actually glad that he was helping me. When I was sure there was literally nothing left for me to throw up, I sat back and started breathing deeply. He gave me a bottle of water he found in the car and without any hesitation I started drinking it. It felt like the sweet nectar of the gods. When I emptied the bottle I realized that I didn’t offer him any. I looked at him with an apologetic look in my eyes which made him laugh a bit.
“Don’t worry, I’m not thirsty and even if I was, there are a couple more bottles in the car.” He smiled and stood up, offering me a hand. I accepted it and lifted my ass off of the freshly cut grass. Soon enough we were on the road again. We were silent for a long time until he spoke in a gentle tole. He was feeling guilty, I could hear it in his voice.
“I had no idea it wold come to this. I thought that Spider is a street thug who got turned into a vampire by their great leader and now he succeeded the throne from him as the King’s greatest achievement. I didn’t know he was this brutal. Or strong as a matter of fact...” His sigh was the toughest to bear. It wasn’t his fault. He was trying to protect his family by not handing over his sister but at the moment he couldn’t see this.
“Look. Knowing what a psychopath Spider is, he would’ve done this no matter what. While we were in that torture chamber of his I heard them talking about killing all werewolves and keeping humans as slaves. He’s clearly crazy, this was his plan all along. We have to warn all the packs we know, we can’t let this psychopath rule everyone and everything.” I tried to sound as reassuring as possible even though I was as scared and confused as a mouse. Nothing made sense, this whole thing came out of the blue and was escalating really quickly. He shook his head.
“No, Des. This was my fault. As the pack leader I should’ve been able to protect them all. Now half of our family is dead. I was right next to you when they started beating and torturing you and I didn’t have the strength to break free and stop them. I’m not worthy of my title.” As he said that I smacked him on the shoulder.
“No one will talk shit about our Alpha except me, got it?! Now snap out of your self pitying state, you still have a part of the pack and they need you!” he grimaced but didn’t say a word. When we finally reached the ranch village where our pack was stationed, I realized that I was wrong. I could smell the blood from miles away. Up until the moment we reached the ranch I was trying to assure myself that it’s the smell from the other village which wanted to stay with me and haunt my dreams, but as soon as we reached the gate of the ranch, I realized that the situation was much worse. There was blood everywhere, just like at Danny’s place, but these bodies were a couple of days old. I can’t believe no one grew suspicious or that no one noticed all the blood and bodies. And also the heads on the spikes. The sickening feeling returned to my stomach. I fell out of the car onto the ground, I needed to throw up but nothing came out of my mouth, instead tears started to roll down my cheeks. I looked up at the spikes once more, my brother’s head was there. All the males were decapitated and their heads ended up on the spikes. All the others, the “weak” ones were behind on a pile. “I’m going to kill that motherfucker, I’m going to kill him and tear him into million little pieces!” I shrieked while looking at the house. I knew no one was there, no one to give this message to that piece of shit but I was still hoping someone would hear me. My head was heavy with rage and I felt the steam build up in me. I was ready to march into war with those bloodsucking assholes and kill them all, no matter how long it would take. I wanted to cut them a thousand times, tie them down and let them slowly rot on the sun until they turn into a shriveled piece of meat, I wanted them to feel what I was feeling at the moment. When I finally looked over at Gabe, I saw him by the pile in the yard, he was holding a body. It didn’t take me long to realize that it was Asta. I was afraid to go any closer to them or the bodies, I wasn’t in the right state of mind and anything could send me into a bloodthirsty rampage even though I knew that an instinctual revenge wouldn’t work out, we needed a plan. I returned to the car and while I was sitting there I closed my eyes so I wouldn’t have to look at all the horrible things in front of me. I heard Gabe coming and I had no idea what to expect. He didn’t let out a single sound since we arrived and this was either the calm before the storm or he lost it. He opened the door but I couldn’t hear him sitting down or starting the car. I opened my eyes and looked at him. His eyes were full of rage, I’ve never seen him like this.
“We’re going up east. Sam’s pack will shelter us but we need to be quick. They’ve seen this car, it will be harder for them to track us if we travel by public transport. Come on, we don’t have any time to spare.” He grabbed two bottles from the car and started walking. I jumped out of the car and hurried after him. Sam was Gabriel’s cousin and he proved himself to be a loyal ally throughout the years, I had nothing against his plan so I didn’t say a word. Not far from the ranch was a bus station, we got there pretty fast. Maybe because Gabe wasn’t sparing me at all. He was at least 8 inches taller than I was, so that meant that he had longer legs too, I had to speed walk in order to keep up with him. He was still eerily silent and I didn’t like it at all.
“Gabe, say something...” I said silently, hoping that he won’t snap at me. He didn’t say a word, he just sighed. He fished some money out of his pocket and went to buy us bus tickets. I sat down on a bench and waited there patiently. When he returned he sat down next to me.
“I’m sorry but the next couple of days will be mostly silent. I can’t... I don’t want to talk about this situation. Not yet. I hope you understand.” I nodded, knowing exactly how he felt right now. We waited silently until the bus arrived and then we boarded it. We didn’t sit next to each other, he thought that it would be best if no one knew that we were traveling together. I agreed with him, it was safer this way. It was killing me to see him in this state of mind. I knew that this wasn’t his fault but I didn’t know how to explain this to a grown man. It would be so much easier to scold him like a child, but he wasn’t one and he was already feeling bad enough about himself without my scolding anyways. Looking at him from the back of the bus I realized that we were the last of his pack. As far as we knew no one survived. The two most stubborn and bad behaving of them all. A hint of guilt appeared in my heart. Maybe Gabe took the wrong person to the meeting, maybe Asta was the one who needed to go with him after all. Like that there would be an intelligent, cunning and really gifted pack member here instead of me. I was a good warrior, that was a fact but I was always a bit tomboyish, I never cared for traditional fairy tales or dress making or even poetry. Asta loved it all and she was preparing to become a teacher. There were hundreds upon hundreds like me in the packs, but she was unique. And Dom, my foolish brother... He was so young, he didn’t even hit a 100 but he was so wise beyond his years. All the others went to him for advice. So many talents died this week, and the two roughest and most self destructive ones survived. How was this fair? What did Spider want with us? Why would he leave us alive? He could’ve ran after us in that village, he could’ve done it in a heartbeat but he didn’t, he let us go. What was his plan?
I must’ve fallen asleep because the next thing I remember was Gabe’s hand on my shoulder, shaking me and telling me to wake up “What, are we there already?” My voice was husky and I had a massive headache. He shook his head.
“No, we need to get off, we’re going to board another bus. We’re going to drive around a bit, that way it will be harder for them to track us.” He said and pulled me up from my seat. I followed him like a zombie, not knowing where we were or where we were going to go. At that point I didn’t even care, I just wanted to sleep. And maybe eat, I still haven’t eaten anything.
“You have anything I can nibble on? My stomach is literally empty, there’s nothing in my system. If I go on like this for any longer I might collapse.” I didn’t want to whine, but it sounded just like that. He smiled a bit and nodded.
“We’ll buy you something to eat.” He said as he led me out of the bus. Once again, I was sitting on a chair on a bus station, but this time when he returned he brought me some beef jerky! I didn’t even chew the pieces, I downed the whole pack in less than a minute. I was still hungry but I knew he didn’t have much money on him so I told him that I’m full and that I was really grateful. He took out another pack while we were waiting.
“I know you’re lying. You’re the only girl I know about which can eat four Big Macs in one sitting. But I have to eat something too so here...” He took a couple of pieces and then offered the rest to me. I shook my head.
“No, you should eat too. You need your strength.” I smiled at him politely. He shrugged and ate the whole thing. Shortly after we were on the bus again. We switched buses 2 more times until we finally arrived at our final destination, Salt Lake City. From there we took a cab to Sam’s apartment. It was a pretty short drive and when we arrived at the building, Sam was already in front of it, waiting for us. I glanced at Gabe with a questioning look.
“I let him know that we are coming. I called him from one of the bus stations.” He explained shortly, then went up to his cousin and hugged him. As soon as I was within his reach, Sam pulled me into a tight hug as well.
“You two are always welcome in my pack’s city, I hope you know that. And I would also offer my condolences to both of you. You lost everything in just a couple of days. It’s terrible...” His voice was deep, deeper than Gabe’s, and it was more soothing as well. Or maybe it was because of the hug I just received from him. We both thanked him for his kind words before he invited us into the building and led us up a flight of stair, to his apartment. It was pretty big and also nicely decorated. The living room had a huge window, I could see the whole city from there. Under the window there was a big leather couch and there was also a small glass coffee table. Exceptional artworks were hanging from the walls and the huge flat screen gave the whole room a fancy look to it. This was definitely not my style, but I had to admit that the place looked wicked. “I have a guest room but unfortunately it has a single bed so the other one will have to sleep in the loving room.” He said apologetically.
“I’ll take the couch.” Gabe didn’t ask, this was an indirect order from him. I wanted to protest but I knew my arguments would go without notice. He was like that, once he set his mind to something, no matter what happened he always reached his goals. I nodded and followed Sam to the guest room.
“I’m really thankful for your help, Sam. And not only to you but to your pack too.” As I said that he smiled widely at me.
“Oh, you silly goose... You don’t have to thank me, we’re practically family!” he said and once again he pulled me into a tight hug “Go on and feel yourself at home. You’ll find some clothes in the wardrobe. I can’t believe you two traveled like this and no one got suspicious...” he shook his head and then left. Honestly, I was surprised as well. But I guess that bloody clothes and beaten up faces aren’t that uncommon these days. I walked over to the wardrobe, it had a big mirror on its door and as I saw my reflection, I flinched. My whole head looked like a giant plum.
“It’s a good thing I’m a werewolf...” I muttered as I was tracing the lines of my swollen face. I took a deep breath, trying not to let the images from our ranch creep into my mind. I took off my clothes and checked out my body. I had more than a few bruises there too, not to mention the burn marks and the cuts. As I touched one on my inner thigh, I flinched. I should’ve cleaned all my wounds but I was too tired for that. They will heal anyways. Maybe a bit slower but they will heal. Those sadistic bastards. I finally opened the wardrobe and took a clean white T-shirt and a pair of black leggings. I didn’t even shower, I just fell onto the bed and I fell asleep in a heartbeat.
The next day I woke up around noon. I slept for almost 20 hours and I still felt terrible, each and every part of my body was aching and not just a little bit. And I was hungry again. I took some clean clothes from the wardrobe, a pair of jeans and a shirt and I headed to the bathroom. I was in desperate need of a shower. On my way I saw both Gabe and Sam sitting in the living room, talking about something. Gabe wanted to ask me something but I just raised one finger and walked straight into the bathroom. I had no energy for talking at the moment. I stepped under the shower and let the hot water wash off all the dirt and misery. My cuts and wounds were aching from the boiling hot water but I didn’t care, I needed this. I let it pour over my hair as well. It was still full of leaves from that forest we escaped from. The water hugged my whole body, giving me a sense of security and safety. I felt calm while standing there. Once the water started running cold I put some shampoo on my hair and massaged it into my tangled curls thoroughly. When I was done, I felt so clean and innocent. I dressed up and joined the men in the living room.
“You have my permission to speak to me, Gabriel, son of Adam.” I laughed a bit, they did too. Gabe offered me a hot cup of coffee and I couldn’t be more ecstatic over it. I grabbed it and took a sip from the cup. It wasn’t too hot nor too cold, it was perfect! He smiled when he saw how happy I was over this.
“Well, I just wanted to ask if you’re OK and if you managed to get any sleep, but I already see that you’re fine!” I stuck my tongue out at him and threw myself on the couch, between the two of them. They were talking about some pack businesses and meetings, probably our initiation. I wasn’t really paying attention, I was trying to concentrate on my nice cup of coffee. I didn’t want to hear anything about businesses, packs, killings or anything similar. I simply wasn’t ready for that yet.
I must’ve tuned out quite a bit because Gabe had to nudge me to bring me back to reality. “What?” I asked, not knowing if I missed anything important, but I realized that my cup was suddenly empty.
“Well... I was just wondering if you have anything to say about these things...” He smiled gently.
“Which things?” I was totally lost in time and space which made Sam laugh.
“You weren’t listening to anything we were talking about, huh?” He teased a bit, but not in a mean way. I think I must’ve blushed a bit because he started laughing even more. Gabe just shook his head lightly at his behaviour.
“We were planning on visiting the pack’s headquarters to see the rest of our new family, what do you say?” Suddenly the world started to spin a little and I put my cup on the glass coffee table. I guess it was a forbidden act around here because Sam sprung up from the couch with the speed of light and brought me a coaster.
“I don’t want a new family, I want my old one back...” I said with a bitter expression on my face. He sighed lightly, but he wasn’t angry. At least he didn’t seem so.
“Well, how about visiting some old friends in our new pack’s headquarters? That sounds better, doesn’t it?” He was smiling at me even though I was behaving like a 5 year old child. I closed my eyes and shrugged.
“I guess it does.” I replied and from that moment I didn’t say a word. I didn’t get changed and I wasn’t extremely happy about this, but I had to meet the pack eventually. I knew some of the older members but they had some new recruits and Gabe told me that it would be nice if I befriended some of them so I wouldn’t feel like an outsider.
The pack’s headquarters wasn’t so far from Sam’s apartment so we got there pretty fast. When we entered their main room I felt odd because of the huge crowd which was waiting for us there. I turned to Gabe with a pretty angry expression on my face.
“Visiting some old friends? Visiting? This is a whole fucking welcoming party! I’m too old for this shit!” I said as I turned around to leave. Suddenly I heard a voice in the background shouting ‘Destiny?! You freaking bitch!’. There were many who called me a bitch, but I knew exactly who was hiding behind the crowd. I would recognize that voice anywhere at any time.
“Hello, my dear sister...”
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