I dodged his jump and rammed him. He roared in anger as he fell to the floor, red fur flashing in the campfire. I jumped back and stared at him warily. No matter what happened, I would not initiate a death match. If that is what he wanted then fine. I would not be a killer of my own Pack however.
He got up again, and feinted to the left. I miscalculated and he got me on the floor, teeth inches away from my throat. I could feel his hot breath against my fur, and I knew that if I didn’t get up, I would lose my Alpha hood. In a move that no true wolf would have learned in the wild, I got my back leg under him and kicked, with my claws extended outward.
He howled again in pain and anger, beginning to lose what little focus he had. Thanks to my aura spells, I could sense his intent as it turned from an angry burnt orange to pure red fury. I got out from under him, and faced him. This was my Pack. I would not give it to this remain of a man that I used to look up too. The Connor of old would have been an excellent Alpha, but this Connor, the angry one, would never lead this Pack like my mother did. Like I could. I had to win.
I couldn’t beat him as a wolf though. No matter how hard I tried, he had more experience than I did. He seemed to realize the same thing, as waves of energy surrounded him and he transformed back into a human. While it is agony to transform into a wolf, the reverse is quick and painless. I did the same, wary as he stared at me.
“While it would be fun to smash you into the ground time after time,” Connor said, “It isn’t how I want to win my Alpha hood.”
He began moving around me in a circle, sizing me up. I knew it was just for show. He knew all of my fighting abilities. He knew because he had taught me.
“If that’s how you want to settle this, then fine. It doesn’t matter if it’s as a wolf or a human, I can take you down,” I said confidence filling my words.
He threw his head back and laughed cruelly.
“You’re nothing but a scared little boy who wants to play Alpha,” he said taunting me.
I would not let my emotions get the best of me. I knew that he wanted to goad me into making the first move, his blue eyes sparking maliciously in the firelight.
“You don’t want to hit first? “
I stared at him, keeping my mouth shut. The Pack looked on, a few having transformed back. Mom, Talia, and Calliope were in the front, barely breathing in anticipation.
I had to win.
He rushed me.
I dodged his first punch and sunk a fist into his stomach, hoping that my augmented werewolf strength did some real damage. He shrugged off the punch, and literally threw me into a tree. I got up, feeling pricks of pain race up and down my back. I couldn’t lose this fight.
He walked over to me and grabbed me by my neck and picked me up straight into the air. I saw Calliope attempt to rush forward, only to be grabbed by Talia and my mom. I could feel my airway being blocked, the corners of my eyes turning red.
“Use all of your strengths,” he roared at me, throwing me to the ground, “How can you expect to be Alpha if you won’t fight with all of your power?”
I lay there gasping, sucking in precious air as he picked me up and slammed me into the ground harder. He grabbed my arm, and in one quick motion, snapped the bone.
I screamed in fury and pain, and I just felt the click of magic, as a boom of energy sprang out of my body, blasting Connor into the ground.
“Use everything you have to protect these people,” he said, an old glimmer of who he used to be showing through.
He picked himself up off the ground, and coughed up a tiny amount of blood. The burst of energy seemed to have done some internal damage.
“I won’t always be here to protect all of you,” he said circling around me.
This time I followed him, knowing somehow that this next attack would determine the fate of the Pack. I cradled my broken arm, muttering a healing spell until the pain turned into a dull ache.
“So use your wolf and your magic. Use both of them. Protect our family.”
“I don’t understand. Don’t you want to be Alpha?” I asked confused by his speech.
“No. That doesn’t mean I won’t fight you with all of my strength, but I need to know that you’re ready for whatever comes your way,” he said.
I stared at him, and then I realized what he was trying to tell me.
“He nodded, slowly and sadly.
“Why? You’re one of our strongest fighters, you-,” I tried to say.
“Not anymore. I need to see this world. When I slaughtered all of those people five years ago, I changed. I didn’t want you or Talia to go kill all of those people.”
I stared at him and nodded.
“I have to leave. I have to find who I am. I need to see who I am without this Pack. First though…,” he sprang leaping towards me one last time.
I dodged and cast three spells in succession, one for strength, one for speed, and the last one for a magical armor.
I became a blur and landed punches in quick succession, and when he tried to fight back, his hits glanced off of my magical armor.
“Thank you for everything,” I told him.
“Caelestis roboris,” I cast a new spell, one that imbued me with celestial strength. My arm began glowing, and I ended the fight.
I howled, as I stared at Connor’s prone form. He wouldn’t get up till tomorrow, since that final punch had knocked him out. Everyone in the Pack whether they were human or wolf, sank to their knees in front of me. I was the new Alpha. I knew my duty to these people. I would perform this duty till my time came to retire. I would make my mother and Connor proud.