I am an awful friend. I completely forgot about the one being that stood by me through everything. A true friend can come in different forms. I need to remember that.
My racing heart calms down as I take in his excited demeanor.
All he ever asked for from me was to be there for him and I have neglected that part.
He pounces on his paws as I struggle to catch my breath.
“Oh my god! Trevin,” I squeal as his tail whips behind him and he bolts to the car.
I have not seen him in a couple of days and my heart burst in my chest as I am reunited with my best friend.
The only person that I can truly be myself around.
I push the door open as Trevin jumps inside the car onto my lap. His face rubs against mine as his wet nose sniffs at me.
“Hey buddy, I’ve missed you,” I say between my giggles as Trevin steps all over me and licks my face as if I were his favorite ice cream flavor.
“Well that’s everyone,” Chase puts the car in reverse my hand shoots out closing the door as he reverses and then speeds out of my house.
Chase does not want someone to come out and run after us. He tries to put as much distance between the packhouse and us as fast as he can.
“What happened?” Trevin jumps off my laps and pushes himself to the backseat. Chase’s eyes look into the rearview mirror with weary eyes.
“Your mother has sent for a fucking manhunt on you,” he sighs out loudly.
No way. I turn back and try to see if any cars are coming after us. Chase's eyes dart towards the trees.
“Can’t she track you down?” She can always order him to take me home.
“Yes she can that’s why I’m trying to put as much distance between us before she figures out that you’re with me,” his foot pushes down on the gas pedal.
“How much distance?” I turn to look at him.
“Let’s find out,” he presses on the pedal harder.
Chase’s eyes stay on the road but his mind is off with the packs. He is trying to figure out what they are planning and what is going to happen.
“What are they doing?” I ask him quietly.
“Your father just made it back to the packhouse.” He clears his throat and shakes his head as if he could shake them out.
“My father?” Oh no. My father hates when I wander off without letting him know at least who is with me.
“Your mother and father fought in front of the pack. He is mad about something your mother did,” he concentrates on his mind and I notice he swerve a bit before regaining control. “Things just got ugly. Your mother’s beta just arrived and he doesn’t seem happy either. Do you know what’s going on?”
There is chaos wreaking havoc back at home and Chase is the reason. Poor Chase has no idea.
Chase glances over at me quickly and I swallow down the dryness in my mouth.
“Yeah,” I sigh, “my mother made a decision that made me run out on her when we were talking. She said that my father and uncle agreed with her but from the looks of it they were blindsided.”
“What did she decide? I can’t hear them as well anymore.” He says lifting his foot from the gas pedal.
“She blames,” dipping my head I stare at my hands on my lap, “she blames you for what happened to me.” I blurt out. He stays quiet and I fight myself to look over at him.
“I don’t blame her,” he finally speaks and I look over at him. His eyes stay locked on the road, “it’s my duty to look after you. That’s it and I couldn’t even do that.”
“Hey, look at me,” I tell him and his eyes go to me. “I did this, not you. I thought you said you were going to give me a taste of freedom...not of regret.”
I’ll tell him about my mother’s decision when we go home.
“Oh I can give you a taste of freedom, you’re not the daughter of the alphas, today you’re just Melody,” he pushes a button and the windows roll down.
This gets Trevin excited as he pushes his head out of the car. The wind fills the car with the scent of the mountains.
My hair swings in every which direction. The road is vacant of cars so Chase opens up his sunroof. My eyes go to the sky above me, it’s not an entirely blue sky there are clouds scattered here and there, I have this sudden urge to get closer to the sky.
My fingers click on my buckle releasing the seatbelt as it zips back into place. Chase looks at me from the corner of his eye as he smiles.
“I’m going out there,” I announce to him and he shrugs.
“You have no restraints with me if that’s what you want to do then do it,” he is not going to stop me.
No one’s here to tell me what I can and can’t do. This foreign feeling floods me lifting my hands I push myself through the sunroof. The wind takes my breath away forcefully but I manage to catch my breath.
The trees rush past me as I push myself further letting myself sit on the roof. A hand grips my ankle his grip is not tight he isn’t telling me to go back inside its more of an I have you just in case grip.
“This is how it must feel like to run in your wolf form,” I shout so Chase could hear me over the wind. “Free and alive!”
After a few minutes of being out of the sunroof, I climb back inside.
“What happened?” Chase chuckles as I rub my cheeks trying to get some feeling into them.
“My face is numb,” I pinch my cheeks and Chase cracks up to the verge of tears.
“Here let me help you,” he grabs my cheeks and he wiggles it.
“Oh god,” I shove myself away from him, “don’t you ever do that again!”
Chase rolls his eyes and goes back to driving. He tells me about his plan. He says that there is a town up ahead, Morrwell.
“What exactly are we doing there?” I have heard of Morrwell but never been out there. My mother would die if she found out we went further out than she allows.
“Whatever your heart desires,” I’ve never done that before. “No one is going to tell you no.”
The view of the town breaks through the trees. I can see the beach with the pier and I point to it.
“I want to go to the beach,” I beam at him and he nods his head.
We head to the beach Trevin appears to be ready to jump out of the car. When he parks I open my door and Trevin bolts to my seat and runs out startling the people around us.
“Is that a wolf?” A girl looks terrified as she hides behind her male companion.
“He’s part-wolf but don’t worry about him,” Chase says as he walks around the car towards us, “he’s friendly,” Trevin turns to look at him and a low growl rumbles in his chest makes Chase add, “most of the time.”
“Who in their right mind wants a wolf as a pet?” The girl glares at us.
“I do! He’s mine, so bite me.” I turn on my heels and start walking to the sand, “come on Trevin,” I can hear his panting as he runs towards me.
“She’s a bit protective of her pup,” I hear Chase say.
“I want a wolf!” The man says.
“Hey wait for me,” I do not have to wait for Chase since he is already by my side. “What do you want to do?”
The breeze hits me and I inhale the salty air, “I want to walk around a bit.”
“You walk all the time,” he retorts.
“No, whenever I try to go to the forest my mother is always breathing down my neck at least here I can have my guard down,” Chase nods his understanding and walks beside me as my shoes sink into the sand. Trevin is at the moment running after some seagulls that landed on the edge of the water.
“I swear I think Trevin is part Chihuahua,” I try to hold back my laughter but instead I snort, “did you just snort?” Chase's handclaps over his chest as he tries to emphasize his shock.
Clapping my hands over my mouth I shake my head trying to keep my laughter from slipping, “No,” I deny it between giggles, “he’s going to kill you when he finds out,” I finally give up and laugh Chase follows soon after.
“You’re not the same Melody from the pack,” he says once he catches his breath.
I sigh contently, “what do you mean?”
“You’re always so guarded and don’t get me wrong you laugh but never like this. Like if you’re away from the wolves you can be yourself.” His dark eyes soften and I shrug.
“Being raised as the daughter of not one but two alphas can make you lose a part of yourself. You can’t trust anyone because everyone is out to get you. My father tried giving me a normal childhood but my mother was always on alert."
"It must have been hard for them. There is no one to guide them in that part of their life."
I know that but just because they do not have the guidance they manage to give me no life.
"Did you know that the first shadow that I ever had was a tall brawny man in his late twenties? I was only six and he terrified me making me think that he was going to hurt me. Then I had seven other shadows before you came into the picture.”
My mind refrains from such memories. It was not a fun time back then.
“That sounds like a nightmare,” he averts his eyes.
“Tell me about it,” I pick up my pace, “then finally a person around my age becomes my shadow.” I glance at him and smile, “I was hoping that I could escape you easier. Who knew that we would turn out like this?” I look around me.
Trevin gets close to a seagull that is not having anything that Trevin is serving and it squawks terrifying him sending him running back to us.
“So I’m your favorite shadow,” he looks content with that.
“If that what you like to think?” Chase opens his mouth but I beat him to it, "Yes, you're are my favorite shadow."
We walk around the beach for bit Chase messes around with Trevin throwing a stick around and occasionally squawking at him making him run away from us.
There is a small seafood place next to the beach and Chase insists that we should go there when he finds out that I have never had seafood.
He orders for me and when the food arrives he is disappointed to find out that I am not a fan. He tries everything to make me try all the different food he ordered even making airplane noises as he tries to baby feed me. Earning some weird stares from the people around us. When he is done eating he refuses to let me pay for my food.
“This is not a date,” I say.
He shrugs and we leave. He insists on buying me something to eat but I want to go deeper into town and do some exploring.
“Fine but I’m buying something for you to eat,” he insists as we walk to the car.
“Okay,” I am starting to like this side of Chase. Not my shadow but my friend.