I knew they were trying to save me.
I could feel my soul drifting away. It was peaceful.
No pain. No worries.
No…Devin no. Please…do not do this to me, a voice begged. You need to come back. You need to come and find me.
That voice sounded familiar. I had a strong urge to listen to that voice.
Something started to pull my soul back towards my unmoving body.
A beep filled the air.
Did he hear me?
I wanted to respond. I wanted to let the voice know that I was back and I was not going to leave again.
Another beep echoed around, then another, and another.
Do not do that to me again, Devin, the voice whispered through my mind. I need you here with me. I do not know if I would be able to survive without you in this world. Please stay strong. Find a way to get better so you can find me.
I remember the voice now.
How could I let myself slip away like that? How could I forget the woman I love more than anything in the universe? How could I forget that I was supposed to save her from the Hunters?
The beeping increased. It was then I could sense others around me. They were moving and reacting to the beeping noise. When the beeping decreased, and became steady again, I could hear their footsteps moving further away and then the sound of a door closing reached me.
Devin, can you hear me?
I tried to respond. I tried so hard.
The beeping increased again.
Mate, know that I am here. Even if you cannot see me, I am here. Stay strong. We will be together again.
I did not hear her after that. I lay there, trapped in my own body, unable to move, unable to respond.
I was aware of others coming and going from the room I was in. I did not know who they were, but I do know that they were trying to take care of me.
I’m guessing they were another pack’s doctors, as I did not recognize any of the voices around me.
It was getting harder to focus on any one thing. My mind kept slipping into daydreams. One minute I would be listening to the nurses and doctors talking about my status, then the next I’m back in my house with Leah.
It would feel so real. How I would feel happy and proud making breakfast for my mate. Other times feeling content, sitting on the couch watching the woods through the huge windows in our living room, or showing her how to play video games in the entertainment room.
I have no idea how long I lay there in my fantasies when I was brought back to reality with a jolt.
Sparks were shooting up my arm and throughout my body. My heart rate picked up and the monitor next to me was going crazy. The feelings running through me caused my wolf to finally stir within me. He had been silent and still since we were brought back from the brink of death.
All of this could only mean one thing…
I ran towards the Rocky Mountain Pack with Leah in my arms. I would keep looking down to make sure she was still there, as she weighed practically nothing in my arms.
When I had brought her up from the cellar, the light was fading with dusk setting in but I was able to notice the bruises on her face, the burn on her neck, and the old scar marring an otherwise beautiful face.
I could feel the rage building inside of me. If that bastard hadn’t already been dead when I got there I would have gladly ripped him to shreds for hurting this tiny little thing in my arms. As it was, I wanted to go back, string up his body and use it as a punching bag.
Leah stirred in my arms. I looked back down and realized I had been so lost in my rage that I was squeezing her too tightly. I loosened my grip enough for her to settle more comfortably in my arms. She had fallen asleep not long after we started our trek to the packs main house.
I just hope she stays asleep until we get there and find Devin. This poor girl has been through a lot in her young life and I want her to rest as much as possible.
My thoughts were interrupted by the sound of her stomach growling.
I wanted to smack myself in the forehead for not thinking of feeding her sooner. Who knows how long it’s been since she last ate.
I stopped when we came to a small stream. I sent out a message to all the men that we would rest for a little while and have something to eat. The men were grateful, as we had been on the move for most of the day without rest.
Several of the men knelt next to the stream to fill their canteens while others rummaged through the stores they took from the abandoned house. It turns out that the Hunters had a fully stocked kitchen and cupboard. It made me wonder exactly how long they had been there, and how they had gone unnoticed all this time.
I shrugged and settled down with my back against a nearby tree. That was something to think about another day. Right now, I had a Luna to feed and take care of.
I used the arm Leah was leaning against to gently jostle her awake. When I saw her eyes start to flutter open, I leaned forward and quietly said, “Leah, sweetheart, you need to wake up. We’ve stopped for a little bit so you can eat.”
Her response was immediate. She sat bolt upright and turned to me wide eyed.
‘Why are we stopped?’ Her voice sounded urgently in my mind, ‘We need to get to Devin. I will eat when I see him.’ She turned away from me and she looked at the scene around her. She seemed startled at the site of so many wolves here.
She glanced towards me and scooted a little closer, ‘Who are all these people?’ she asked.
I relaxed into the trunk of the tree as I looked on with pride at my pack mates. “They are the ones who helped to free you,” I said aloud, letting everyone nearby know that their Luna was interested in who they were. “They are your pack mates. You are their Luna,” I continued. I saw her expression become quizzical out of the corner of my eye.
‘What do you mean I am their Luna?’ Her head tilted slightly with the question.
“You and Devin now run the pack together,” it was my turn to be slightly confused. “Didn’t he tell you that before you two mated?” I asked.
She shook her head ‘no’ and looked at her hands.
I put my finger under her chin and tilted her face up so I could look into her eyes. They were so much like her mother’s. In fact, aside from the scar over her left eye and the healing bruise on her right cheek, she was the spitting image of her late mother. It brought a pang to my heart to think about my deceased friends, but I was glad their daughter survived.
“Why not?” I questioned. If my son mislead her in anyway just so she would mate with him, injured or not, I’ll slap him upside his head.
A light blush stained her cheeks, ‘We were busy,’ was her reply.
I was silent for a moment before I started to laugh aloud.
Leah’s brows drew together when I started to chuckle. I waived a hand in the air, letting her know not to worry about it.
Instead, I yelled to a young man closest to me, “Johnny! Look in one of the packs we brought and see if you can find something for your Luna to eat. If her stomach growls any louder I’m going to think it will eat the lot of us!”
Johnny grinned as he rummaged in one of the rucksacks for some food. The others heard my comment as well and chuckles were heard around our temporary rest stop.
I faced Leah again only to see her face was bright red in embarrassment.
I chuckled again. Leah was just the woman my son needed.
When Devin’s father first woke me to let me know we were stopping, I was upset. I was hoping we would head straight for my mate. The separation from him was taking its toll on my wolf and I. Even though our mark was gone, we knew he was our mate and being without him was torture in and of itself.
After one of the men, Johnny, had brought me something to eat, I was grateful that Devin’s father decided to stop. I did not know how long I had been locked away, but I did know I was hungry, and it felt good to eat something.
When it looked as if everyone was rested, and had finished eating, they packed up and were on the move.
Devin’s father picked me back up and ran with me in his arms. I was comfortable with him as he reminded me of an older version of Devin. Of course, his scent was wrong, as he was not our mate, but he was kind and treated the men as equals. I knew he had a good soul and was nothing like the man who claimed to be my father my entire life.
I was getting sleepy in his arms. I did not want to slip into the darkness of sleep just yet, so I decided to ask him some questions.
I watched as trees went by in a blur as I asked, ‘What is your name?’
His steps faltered for a moment, but he righted himself almost immediately. He cleared his throat and seemed a little embarrassed as he said, “I’m sorry. I forgot to introduce myself. I was just so happy to have found you that it slipped my mind.” I could feel his eyes on me, waiting to see my response. “My name is Kent.”
A small smile graced my lips. Kent. It sounded like a strong and honorable name for a strong and honorable wolf.
‘It is nice to meet you Kent. My name is Ainia,’ I waited to see what his response would be the statement of my real name.
I felt him sigh, “I know.”
I looked up at him startled. ‘You know?’ I asked.
He nodded. “Yes. I was great friends with your parents before they died. I was there for the birth of you, your sister, and your brother.”
I could feel the happiness radiating off him at the memory. Then what he said struck me.
He knew my parents.
I could ask him all the questions I have about them. Everything I had begun to wonder about since I found out my ‘father’ was not actually my father.
Before I could pelt questions at him he asked, “How do you know what your name is?” I looked at him quickly, but he was paying attention to the forest around us. “When Devin spoke of you he said you did not know who you were?”
I nodded and realized he could not see my action so I answered instead. ‘I did not know who I was when I met Devin.’ I drew in a shaky breath, ‘It was only when I awoke in the dark and my captor spoke that I regained all my memories.’
I could feel the tears building behind my eyes. I tried to remain strong and not let them fall. I wanted these men, these wolves, to see a strong leader, not a weak crying woman. However, I do not think I was strong enough as a single tear slipped past my guard.
Kent must have smelled the salt of the traitorous tear, because he pulled me closer to his chest and whispered that it was all right, that I was safe now.
I nodded and wiped the tear from my cheek. Snuggling further into Kent’s arms, I let my thoughts wander to questions about my parents and what they had been like before they were ripped away from this world.
I must of fallen back to sleep as the next thing I knew I was in a room being placed in a chair.
I looked up at Kent, then around the room.
I was in the room from the vision.
I looked in front of me and saw Devin lying on the bed just like the image I had seen in the void.
I could not contain my tears as they streamed down my face. So many emotions were running rampant in my body as I raised a hand shakily to place it atop Devin’s. I was overjoyed to be here with my mate. I was heartbroken to see him lying so still and unmoving. I wanted to wrap my arms around him and never let him go. I was scared to touch him for fear of hurting him further.
When my fingers brushed the back of his hand, I felt our connection fly through me as the monitor tracking his heart rate went crazy.
‘I’m finally here,’ I sent to him.