Terra (The Vulgri Hybrids Book One)

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Chapter 23

| Nathalia |

“What are you doing in my room?” I demanded. Seriously, what is wrong with the security of this place?

I sniffed the air. Lupus.

He raised his head and when his eyes met mine, I found myself staring into a pair of beautiful silver orbs. There was something magnetic about it, like being pulled into an unending black hole. His eyes shifted to the side and in a flash, he was gone. My breath hitched when I saw a reflection from the window glass, a figure behind me with a sword raised and ready to strike.

I never imagined that today was the day that I would die. My thoughts went to Cassy. If I died, she would be left alone. I couldn’t do that to her. And I needed to make sure that she was safe. So I ducked as fast as I could, the sword missing just a fraction of my head and cutting into the towel instead. I lost my balance and landed with a sharp thud on the floor, hip bone first, and I knew if I survived this that it would fucking bruise before it would heal.

The hooded figure reappeared, tackling the one with the sword on the ground. I realized he wasn’t really gone and that he just moved fast enough for my eyes to see. His hood came off, freeing a mass of blonde hair. I switched my gaze from him and fixed it on the one who just tried to kill me. I gasped when I realized that it was a Lawin female. How the hell did a Lupus and Lawin trespassed in an Ilwani dorm?

My relief was immense when the Lupus guy successfully disarmed the girl─or woman, I couldn’t tell exactly because both of them were wearing masks. I was inclined to take the side of the guy because clearly, he was protecting me. I shook off my initial surprise and decided to help. I aimed straight for the girl’s arm with my vine, its thorns burying deep into her skin. She screamed in pain, her eyes going wild in panic. She grabbed something from behind her and in an instant, she evaporated into thin air.

I stared horrified at the space she was previously occupying. She used an Ilwani magic to escape, only proving that this was a planned assassination. It meant only one thing: the jig was up.

Standing up, the guy regarded me cooly. “Вы больше не в безопасности,” he said.

“Speak English,” I said although I understood what he meant.

“You’re no longer safe here. Pack your bags, we’re leaving the academy,” he commanded.

I gasped. “My twin! I need to get her.” I scrambled up to my feet and started for the door, forgetting that I was still in my towel.

He grabbed my arm and I scowled at him disapprovingly. “Let go. I need to warn my twin. I am thankful that you saved me but you also barged in here like a creep so you don’t have any right to order me around.”

“She is safe. We got to her first.”

I paused. “You know where she is?”

“Yes.”

I released a harsh breath before crossing my arms in front of my breasts and looked at him pointedly. “So, do you have any plans on telling me who you are?”

He removed his mask and revealed his whole face. Frowning, I reached for the light switch and switched it on to see him more clearly.

He was handsome, there’s that. He had this Alexander Pettyfer look going on.

“You don’t remember me?” he asked.

“Should I?” I fired back.

Sighing, he turned around and went to the window. “Get dressed and pack. I will wait for you in the forest exactly at the back of this building.”

“What if somebody comes back to kill me again?” I called out.

He glanced back. “That’s the only one they sent. No one is coming back. For now.”

They? The Council?

“And how do I know I can trust you?”

“I’m from the Black Claw pack,” he raised his hoodie up and an image of a claw in vibrant black ink was visible on his lower back, the same tattoo Papa had on his right arm. Yanking down the hem of his jacket, he jumped out of the window, the curtain billowing softly after him. I went for it and looked down. There was no trace of him anymore. It was quite a far jump but I was sure that he survived that. I grabbed the edge of the window and slid it back into place.

Cassy? I tried on the mind-link.

Lia! Are you okay?

Yeah. Someone just tried to kill me.

Oh, God. Someone was in my room too. But da’s pack got to me first.

Thank Goodness! I will pack my things now.

Alright. Hurry.

I ran to my closet and quickly donned my underwears, a simple white shirt, and pants. Scanning my entire closet, I realized that there wasn’t really much to pack. Cassy and I had traveled light, always ready to run whenever we needed. And it proved to be really useful at the moment. I grabbed a few clothes and dumped it on the only luggage I brought with me. Some of the more important things like my human identity cards, money, and a few toiletries, I placed on my trekking backpack.

Taking my phone last, I groaned when I saw that it already died. No sending a text to Lana and Theo then. Maybe later.

I surveyed the room one last time. It had been a pleasure living here even if it was only a month and a week. It was comfortable and I felt like a Princess in my own tiny kingdom. Life with Hazel was always kept simple, as we tried to blend in with the humans. But in here, I had experienced living in splendor even for a short while.

With a heavy heart, I crept my way out of the building and into the forest, its darkness completely engulfing me. I was not usually afraid of the dark but what happened earlier was still so fresh and it left me quite rattled. I summoned my wolf to improve my vision.

“Lia!”

I released my hold on the bag and received Cassy’s embrace, closing my eyes and inhaling her scent, her familiarity calming every nerve of my being.

“I was so worried about you! I wanted to come and get you but they said someone’s already there,” Cassy said, stepping back and moving her head towards the other Lupus who were with us.

The guy who saved me was there, leaning on a tree with his arms crossed in front of him. I dipped my chin downward to show my gratitude. There were two other male Lupus who were with him, one slim bordering on skinny, and one too large, his round tummy prominent, reminding me of a sumo wrestler.

Facing them, I tried to smile, but it turned out a little awkward so I settled on civil. “Thank you for saving us. I’m Nathalia, by the way.”

The sumo wrestler look-alike guy smiled from ear to ear, his eyes disappearing slightly as he did. I opened my mouth in silent adoration. He was the cutest thing I had ever seen. “I am Koji. It is a pleasure meeting you both,” he said, his eyes twinkling.

“Jorge,” introduced the slim one, a tiny smile plastered on his face.

I looked expectantly back to silver eyes. He grunted, his expression pinched. “Ethan,” he finally said.

I racked my brain for his name. He asked me earlier if I remembered him, meaning I saw him before. The only member of the Black Claw who came to visit us when we were young was its Alpha, Elias Stone. And at that time... Oh! He was carrying a boy with him. I recalled that we played with the boy that day. Or should I say we pestered him with our girly toys and he was snarling at us the whole time. They came to visit again and he was more accommodating then. I blushed when a scene of me and Cassy pulling at his arms in both directions flashed back in my mind. We were arguing on who that boy liked the most. When they left, he was the topic of most of our conversations for almost a month, with both of us having a silly crush on him.

I blinked at him and a slow smirk crept across his face when he realized that I finally remembered. Ethan Stone, the son of the Alpha of Black Claw pack. How fascinating to meet him again in this kind of circumstance.

“Shift,” he ordered, his eyes fixed on Jorge and Koji.

Jorge and Koji shifted and it was entertaining to watch the latter morphing into a wolf. It took longer than normal because of his human size, but when he was full wolf, his size was almost the same as Jorge’s. Ethan focused on the two wolves, his pupils alternatively constricting and dilating, a mind-link in progress.

Jorge and Koji barked once and went ahead of us, probably acting us scouts.

“Let’s go. Move fast and stay alert,” Ethan said before turning his back and started to walk, providing a path for us to follow.

I made a face at Cassy and mouthed what Ethan just said, making exaggerated movements with my head as I said each word. Cassy bit her bottom lip to suppress a laugh. I grinned at her before grabbing the handle of my bag and followed the boy who once troubled our young hearts.

It was a fifteen-minute hike in the forest before we reached the other side. I immediately saw Koji standing beside two Wrangler Jeeps, one black and one silver, both of it looking quite bad ass. Koji and Jorge came forward and retrieved our bags from us, placing it at the back of the black jeep. I muttered a small thanks to them and watched them hopped inside the car and drove off.

Now that the silver jeep was left, Cassy and I looked at each other in silent communication. I shrugged and went to the backseat, the obvious choice for me.

When the three of us were settled and Ethan was already driving to God knows where, I tapped into the mind-link with my twin.

No mate pull? I asked.

No.

Too bad.

Shut up.

I chuckled and covered it immediately with a fake clearing of my throat. Still grinning like a Cheshire cat at the backseat, my eyes caught Ethan’s on the rearview mirror. I quickly averted my gaze and looked down, fumbled with my hands just to have something to do. The rest of the drive was spent in silence and because it was already past my bedtime, I fell asleep somewhere in between. I only woke up when I felt the car slowing down. With heavy-lidded eyes, I yawned widely and pushed myself upright to see where we arrived.

I saw people rushing to and from the entrance of the building, pushing carts with numerous stacked baggages in them. I could also hear the disturbance in the air as planes took off and a distant noise of a public address system calling for last minute boarding.

“Why are we in the airport?” Cassy asked.

“We’re flying to Russia,” replied Ethan.

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