Solstice Howl

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Chapter 16

They call it mutt fights. Where ring leaders cast humans into an arena with trained, feral wolves from the wild, not werewolves, but wolves you’d find out in the Forest.

The irony, that the beasts cast us to fight with their own brothers, and dare to insinuate that we are the mutts.

I painfully thought of Carter, I knew he could hold on his own in a fight. But, last time I saw him, he was malnourished and mentally unhinged.

They couldn’t possibly expect him to fight in that condition!

It’s just... inhuman!

Kinda the point.

I clutched the bars with renewed energy, “The hell? Since when do they send humans out there to fight?”

Carter had once told me of wolves fighting werewolves for the fun of it, not exactly ‘to the death’, per se, but just to exhibit strength.

You know, werewolves and their pride.

Dean smiled almost... sadistically, “As a form of entertainment.”

I thought back angrily to Luka and I’s conversation, of him claiming that Carter would not be harmed until the verdict of my people.

And they couldn’t have possibly been persecuted in the short span of time since our talk.

So, he lied to me.

“Dammit.” I muttered to myself,

It’s what you get for trusting a beast.

A little piece of me withered at the thought of him lying to me, betrayal like a sharp dagger piercing from the inside of me.

I clutched at my chest, disturbed at the fact that I even care.

That can change- will change.

But, can you trust Nala? What if it’s a trap?

It wasn’t entirely impossible that she would tell on me to Luka, and for me to be trialed for attempting to break a bond, which is punishable by being collared.

When a mate threatens the bond at any given time, the other is entitled to collaring them according to law.

I shivered in pure disgust at the thought of that mongrel placing a hand around my neck.

“Oi, Silver.” The abnormally large Dean peered at me in earnest, “I need to get out of here soon. I’m going crazy.”

A caged wolf, pacing in his most damming place.

Why should you help this man? You can just leave him.

I know I’m right, he can’t be trusted just by the looks of him, his species added on to it is reason in itself.

He knew as soon as my face was set harshly that I was leaving him there.

“No...” he trailed off, “you need me! I can help you get your boy back! You think they’re going to let a human waltz in there and take their show for the night?”

Ah, he found a way to wriggle himself in, I didn’t think about just how I’d get Carter back. Now, I’m forced to contemplate his offer.

“You think they’re going to let an escaped convict in there too?” I counteracted.

He shoveled his paw through his hair, “it is possible for me to mask my scent, I’ll blend in. But, you-” He inhaled and exhaled almost longingly, “You can’t mask whatever scent you’re emitting, it’s too potent.”

“I just don’t know if I can trust you.” As soon as I said it, I wish I could take it back. I just sounded so young, so vulnerable.

Sometimes, it’s hard to remember that I’m only 17.

Dean barked out a humorless chuckle, “you can’t. I ain’t gonna beg you to help me, but you can bet your ass I’ll do anything to get the hell out of here.”

My thoughts wondered from him to the wrapped object still curled in my palm, and I became curious as to what it was.

It was large to where it exceed my hand, but small enough to stick in my back pocket, which I did.

The keys to the jail cell clamped to my pant loop.

“C’mon, Silver. You have the keys, all you gotta do is unlock it.” His voice was coaxing despite its raspiness.

You trusted Luka and look where that got you, a couple of steps behind on your plan.

I have to be smart.

“I need leverage, something to guarantee that you won’t flee, and you won’t harm me when I let you out.”

Dean scoffed, but nonetheless obliged, rummaging in his tattered pant’s pockets.

I curiously leaned closer, wondering just what he had that would be important enough to convince me to let him out.

Except, he had other plans- like a viper, his large hand reached through the thick bars, clamped around my throat and pulled me close, the bars the only thing separating us.

We were so close that his breath fanned across my face, it wasn’t foul, it just smelled like breath.

And his grip wasn’t tight enough to kill me, but enough to keep me in place.

I looked down, curious as to how he could reach his large arm through the cell and gasped when I saw it bent in an awkward angle, obviously very broken.

Somehow, he managed to stick it straight through.

If he’s in pain, his face doesn’t show it, instead, it’s a blank canvas of emotion.

His other arm rammed through right after, pulling me closer by my waist, causing me to cry out in outrage, struggling despite his brute strength.

Fortunately for me, he didn’t know that I had been practically training for this very situation my whole life.

He can only do so much with his strained arms.

I relaxed myself, but his grip didn’t ease, he’s smart. When that didn’t work, I dug my chin into my chest, trapping his hand and preventing him from squeezing.

Then, I twisted my body around as hard as I could, hoping that his arms would snap in half.

When I heard the resounding creak of a bone out of place and his grip on me gone, I stumbled away.

The other jail cells, which had been silent up to this point, were rowdy, their inner demons excited at the prospect of witnessing a fight.

Wild.

Dean was setting his nearly completely rotated arms back in place by the time I fixed myself, smiling despite his obvious pain, “You got my respect, Silver.”

“Yeah?” I slightly massaged the forming bruise around my neck, “I don’t fu**ing want it.”

And then I left.

*•*•*•*

It only took me a moment after I left the dungeon to realize that Dean had taken the keys when he clamped his hand around my waist.

“Smart bast*rd,” I shook my head- not even bothered to worry about him and the chaos he’d bring.

What I need to do right now is find Nala, and tell her we need to leave tonight.

Because what I’m about to do, well after I do it, I’m going to need to leave immediately, or else I really will be stuck here forever.

My legs strode all through the house, on a mission for the beautiful bronze-skinned witch.

I had overheard that she had her own room, where she plays with her runes and rocks and talks to the moon,

It’s a load of crap.

But, the room was easy to find, a square plaque on the door with her name clearly embedded in it.

I didn’t bother knocking, and was surprised to walk in on Luka and Nala in a heated discussion.

The thrill of jealousy and adrenaline shocked my veins, “should I leave or...?”

“N-no!” The Alpha stuttered, stepping towards me impetuously.

Nala was staring straight ahead emotionlessly, her room plain except bottles containing colorful liquids ordered meticulously on a counter.

“Mya, we should go-” He stopped himself short. “What were you doing here in the first place?”

“I-”

“I asked her for a lock of her hair, protection spell for a Luna, I was just taking precautions because of the rogue attack.” Nala hurriedly butted into my hesitant start of a sentence.

I knew the Alpha was suspicious, after all, he left his emotions open to me, and his mind; a book I could practically read anytime I wanted.

“Mya, you agreed to that?”

I hated how he referred to me, I hated him, and it pained me to hate him, and that makes me hate him more.

“Yeah, whatever,”

Except it isn’t whatever. I need to talk to Nala now, and that’s nearly impossible with the clingy beast to the right of me.

I tried to inconspicuously send Nala laser beams, but she was avoiding eye contact.

At least I know they weren’t talking about my near-coming escape.

I’m sure if they had been, I would’ve known by now based on the Alpha’s reaction.

Her motivation is obvious, it’s clear she still harbors feelings for him (God knows why), and found a way to get me out of the picture.

At the thought of her want for him, a shot of anger creeped up my back, and I unconsciously clenched my fist in anger.

The Alpha looked deep in thought, scrutinizing every minisicule detail of my face, causing my nerves to derail as I consider myself an expressive person, and I hardly wanted him to know what I’m thinking.

“Well go ahead,” he gestured outwardly, obviously suspicious of my sudden compliance.

I glanced at Nala who looked at me in a slight panic.

Her runes were a scattered mess, stacks upon stacks of withered, old pages scattered around the room.

Distraction.

We need a distraction.

I stumbled slightly, clutching my forehead as if it were about to explode.

“Mya?!”

“I don’t feel good!” I keeled over for dramatic effect, lurching.

“I need to sit!” I exclaimed.

Luka, faster then a human eye can’t catch, pulled a chair behind me.

“What’s wrong? Nala, get the doctor!”

I squinted one eye open and stopped my dramatic noises, “No! No- I just need food!” At his confused look, I continued on with my moans of fake pain.

“Nala, go to the kitchen-”

“No! I don’t trust her!”

I inwardly winced, by me saying that, I implied that I trust him.

“Why-” he cut himself short, and I confusedly peered at him at his sudden change of emotions.

He went from concerned to angry in two seconds flat and I recoiled when I noticed his direct line of vision.

My throat.

My very bruised throat specifically.


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