Chapter 16: Rescued Just In Time
I growled as Jason ran towards me and shifted.
‘Do you have a plan?’ I asked. ‘Because I don’t know about you, but I know that I can’t take a royal third.’
I quickly dodged just in time and I turned around to see another wolf run towards me.
‘That’s Apollo.’ Artemis said. ‘Maybe he can help us?’
‘Are you kidding me?’ I asked snapping as Apollo got closer.
‘It was just a thought!’ Artemis defended.
‘I really don’t think he’s going to help us.’ I growled as I jumped up to dodge a tackle.
Apollo stopped by shoving his paws into the dirt and he quickly turned around to charge me again.
‘We aren’t fighting Rick, Artemis. These are real-life royals who have been training their entire lives.’ I pointed out.
I let out a grunt as Janus knocked me over. But before he could bite me, I rolled over and jumped back on my feet.
He let out a growl and stalked closer towards me.
‘You just gotta fight the best you can.’ Artemis sighed.
I let out a growl and charged Janus.
But before I could reach him, another wolf came towards me and head-butted my side when I wasn’t looking.
I let out a whimper as I hit the tree and slid down. No doubt getting splinters in my skin.
‘That’s gonna hurt in the morning.’ Artemis said.
I scoffed. ‘Yeah if I make it that long.’’
I growled and slowly got up. I looked up and saw all three of them stalking towards me.
‘Your best bet is to go against the warrior.’ Artemis said. ‘He is the weakest out of the three and you have a better chance of beating him over the other two.’
Right as I was about to jump towards him, a ball of fire landed in between us and smoke started to rise up like crazy.
‘Wolfsbane.’ Artemis hissed.
The royals all growled and backed away quickly, but I could see the smoke catching up to them.
My eyes got wide at the thought of hunters, but then I remember how Hecate saved me the first time.
‘Do you think it’s Hecate?’ I asked as I felt myself getting weak.
Another ball of fire landed next to the first one and the smoke got closer.
The wolfsbane caused us all to shift, but it was hard to see because of how thick the smoke was getting.
“Athena.” A soothing voice said.
I looked up through hooded eyes and saw the familiar warm, brown eyes.
“Hecate.” I said weakly.
“Hold your breath the best you can.” She said quietly as she placed a blanket over me. “I got you. It’s going to be okay. I’m sorry I didn’t get here sooner.”
I felt Hecate lift me up and carry me as she ran.
I looked over and saw Jason on the ground knocked out.
Apollo and Janus were both back in their human forms and Apollo looked up.
He saw me as his eyes went wide before the smoke blocked his view.
I felt Hecate place me in the jeep before I knocked out.
I ran through the forest as I headed toward where Janus said he saw the rogues.
‘I hate Rogues.’ Zeus growled.
‘I do too.’ I agreed.
‘Ares!’ Janus said frantically.
‘What’s wrong?’ I asked quickly.
‘Hunters.’ He growled. But I could tell something wasn’t right. His voice sounded weak.
‘Janus?’ I asked, but there was no answer. ‘Janus!’
I pushed myself faster.
‘Apollo?’ I asked hoping he would answer.
But right before he answered, I got hit with a mouthwatering scent. Lavender and I think sugar cookies almost.
‘Mate!’ Zeus howled excitedly. ‘Our mate is here somewhere!’
But as we kept running, the smell was getting fainter.
‘Run faster!’ Zeus growled. ‘She’s getting away!’
I got to a small clearing but saw that it was covered in smoke.
‘Is there a fire?’ I asked Zeus as I continued to walk forward.
‘Stop!’ Zeus yelled.
I growled and jumped back as I felt my skin sizzle.
‘Wolfsbane.’ Zeus sighed.
“Ares?” A weak voice said.
My head shot up as I heard Apollo.
I shifted back and slipped on the shorts that I was carrying in my mouth.
“Apollo?” I called out.
“Over here.” He said.
I squinted my eyes and saw two outlines carrying another outline.
By now the smoke was slowly starting to clear, but not fast enough.
I held my breath and ran over to them.
Apollo and Janus were carrying an unconscious Jason.
After helping them out of the smoke, we laid Jason on the ground carefully.
“Achilles is on his way with Dr. Asclepius in the Yukon.” I said as I checked them over. “What happened?”
“We corned the rogue.” Janus said coughing. “We got a couple of hits on her and then that’s when the ball of wolfsbane showed up.”
“The smoke was covering the clearing rapidly. Then another one was thrown in.” Apollo continued as Jason tried to stop coughing.
“Wait.” I said as I held my hand up. “Did you say ball of wolfsbane?”
Apollo nodded. “Two of them. I’ve never seen any hunter use that before. It’s stronger than anything I’ve seen.”
I growled. “That’s because a hunter didn’t throw them.”
“What do you mean?” Janus asked with watery eyes.
“Hecate.” I sighed.
“Why would she do that to us?” Janus asked. “I thought she was on our side.”
“You said that the rogue was a girl?” I asked.
“Yeah.” Janus nodded.
“I think she was protecting the rouge.”
“Another thing.” Apollo said speaking up. “The rogue. It was Athena.”
“As in the girl that you’ve been following around?” I asked.
“The same one who didn’t have a scent.” He confirmed.
I growled. “That’s how!”
“What?” Janus asked.
“The reason she didn’t have a scent. Hecate gave her one of her scent hiding potions. It would also explain why Hecate threw the wolfsbane before you could grab her. Hecate is protecting this rogue.”
We turned around as we heard a honk.
Achilles pulled up and parked the car before jumping out with Dr. Asclepius.
“Jason!” Achilles yelled as he ran up to him.
“He’s okay I think. Just unconscious.” Janus said.
“I want the hunter’s head.” Achilles growled as he picked up his brother with the help of Apollo.
“It wasn’t a hunter.” I said. “It was Hecate.”
“But why would she do this?” Achilles asked. “They could have been hurt.”
I shook my head. “She didn’t do this to hurt them. She was protecting a rogue.”
I looked back and saw the smoke was almost gone. Over by the trees, I could see where the smoke was coming from.
“I’ll be right back.” I said as I walked over to the source.
I bent down and picked up the bags by the rope that she used to tie them together.
I walked back over to the guys and showed them.
“Just as I thought.” I said as I held them up. “She put just enough to knock you guys out, not hurt you.”
“Why is she protecting Athena?” Apollo asked.
“I don’t know.” I growled as we walked towards the car. “But I’m about to go ask because she’s protecting my mate.”
“Athena is your mate?” Janus asked shocked.
I nodded. “When I was on my way here, I smelt her scent. It was getting weaker like she was running.”
“That must have been when Athena was being carried away.” Apollo said in realization. “And I guess we found out the reason why our wolves felt connected to her.”
“Oh shit.” Janus said worriedly.
“What?” I asked as we pilled in the car.
“I-I may have knocked her against a tree.” Janus said quietly.
‘I’m going to kill him.’ Zeus growled.
‘Stop.’ I said sternly. ‘He didn’t know and he was just doing his job.’
‘I’m still going to kill him.’
“It’s okay.” I said with gritted teeth.
“I-I’m sorry Ares. I-I didn’t know.”
I shook my head with a sigh. “Honestly. It’s okay. And you shouldn’t be apologizing to me.”
Janus gulped. “I don’t think she will forgive me.”
“Well let’s go ask.” I said as Achilles stepped on the gas.
The drive to Hecate’s house seemed short. But I think that was because I spaced out the whole time.
“Alpha. We are here.”Achilles said as he pulled into the driveway.
I nodded. “I’m going to talk to her. You guys head back and get Jason checked out.”
Achilles nodded as I exited the vehicle.
“Wait!” A voice shouted.
I turned around and saw Apollo and Janus jump out of the car before Achilles could pull away.
“You guys need to go with. Go get checked out.” I said sternly.
Apollo shook his head. “We are going to help.”
I nodded and walked up to Hecate’s house.
I raised my fist and knocked on the door.
The door swung open and Hecate looked at us with wide eyes.
“A-Ares. What are you doing here?” She asked worriedly.
“I think you know why.” I stated sternly as I peered around her head, checking her living room.
I closed my eyes and sniffed as that wonderful lavender and sugar cookie smell filled my nostrils.
“I don’t know what you are talking about.” She said standing tall.
“Hecate you need to get out of my way. Now.” I growled.
I went to step around her, but she blocked my way.
“You may be an Aphla King, but guess what. I’m not a werewolf so that means I don’t take orders from you, Ares.” Hecate said strictly.
“She is my mate!” I growled.
“I don’t care!” Hecate yelled back. “This poor girl has been through enough and her almost dying earlier isn’t helping. She needs to rest. And also. Don’t you ever growl at me again.”
I glared at her and crossed my arms. “I’m not leaving until I see her.”
“Well, then it looks like you’re going to be waiting here for a while.” She said before shutting the door in my face.
“Did…did she just slam the door in my face?” I asked taken aback.
“Um. I think so.” Apollo said shocked.
“She’s a witch. So I don’t know about you guys, but I really don’t want to piss her off anymore.” Janus said.
“Well, I’m not leaving.” I said before sitting down on the steps. “My mate is in there.”
Janus sighed before sitting down next to me.
“Well if you guys aren’t leaving, then I’m not leaving either.” Apollo said before sitting down on the step in front of us.
“This is going to be a long night.” I sighed as I placed my head in my hands.