✔️| The Gift of a Curse {1}

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For three days I have been strictly following a boring and a dull routine, never once straying from it: Bellamy cooks a breakfast that I later refuse to eat, I eat all the ice cream he has after he leaves, and then time passes slowly and painfully as I sit in the empty house alone. When it is dinner time, a cook from the pack house arrives with my food but I follow her like a crazy woman holding a knife until she eventually leaves scared for her life.
At night, Bellamy comes home, fails to maintain a senseless conversation with me and then retreats to his room. My favorite time of the day is when the gamma sleeps because I get to see Clay. We spend about an hour or two talking about our day and million other things; the atmosphere is basically relaxing when he is with me in a place that I want to flee from.
Tonight, however, is different. When Clay comes, his eyes are the exact opposite of relaxed, and I can see a hint of anger and disappointment in them.
“Hello sunshine.” I mock his expression in an attempt to lighten up his mood.
I did not look in the mirror, but I am sure you look more depressed than I am.
I climb out of the room through the window and copy my best friend’s action by climbing up the building to the roof.
“So what’s with the frown?” I ask as he sits next to me on the roof.
Before we discuss depressing matters, I brought you this. He gets out a bag full of gummy candy from his inner jacket pocket. I cheerfully take it out of his hand with a wide smirk on my face.
“So how was your day? Because your sour expression tells me that it was worse than mine.”
Today all the alphas and their first ranks had their first gathering.
“One, why am I hearing about this just now? You were supposed to mind-link me the second it ended! And two, did you just say first gathering? They did not figure out what they are going to do yet?”
Let us start from the beginning… I nod eager to know what I missed.
As I told you yesterday, the last alpha arrived last night, and alpha Oliver did not want to delay things. Hence, they had a meeting this afternoon. As the head warrior of the Red Eclipse pack, I had to attend. They all blamed Alexander Cresswell without even debating the matter. The meeting did not even last ten minutes. Irritation can be easily detected in his tone.
I cannot say that I am surprised that they are not planning to handle the situation with integrity, but I cannot lie and say I was not hoping they would. They are not even attempting to collect evidence to support their theory!
“Something tells me you are disappointed in Oliver not all the alphas.” I smirk knowing that I am right. For some reason, Clay‘s respect for Oliver is unbreakable. Case in point, I have been trying to break it for years.
Do not give me that look; you know why I honor him.
“Do not bring that up, I would rather pretend that it never happened.” I mutter in distaste. A few quiet moments pass before I talk again.
“Alphas are supposed to be brave and courageous, so why are they being cowards? Why is everything in this screwed up world not in the way they are supposed to be?”
If everything is the way we want it to be, it would not be called reality. I think they are just scared for themselves and their people; I am not trying to justify their actions, especially since it is not the first time they have reacted in such unprofessionalism. However, we all make the wrong choices when we are afraid. They are being ruled by their trepidation. I also believe that that is why they have not made a decision yet.
“You have a point, but that does not mean that every werewolf has to pay for their fear.”
Well, they are intending on making a final decision tomorrow, so I guess that is something. Clay replies.
“I still would not expect them to come up with anything good.” I mumble.

I lay in my bed as I suddenly start to feel fatigue. The second my head hits the pillow I am dragged into an endless darkness. I gradually start to lose the feeling in my arms and legs, and my mind feels like it is being pulled into a world that is beyond anything that I have ever known. I begin to panic when a distant bright light appears out of nowhere.
Slowly, everything around me takes shape until I am standing in a luxurious yet somewhat old house. I immediately know where I am and what is happening.
“Nick Fairchild! What the hell do you think you are doing?” I yell into what seems to be an empty house, but I know he is in here.
“Hello to you too.” He comes down the huge golden stairs that are placed on the furthest side of the room. I take a second to look back at the place where I have committed most of my sins.
There are another stairs on the left –an exact replica of the other-, between them there is an old fashioned fireplace. On the wall opposite of the fireplace is a huge bookshelf, it covers the entire wall. The other two walls are made of glass which allows me to see the beautiful forest in which Nick’s house is. As for the furniture, there are two long couches placed opposite to each other, a round table in between them, and an arm chair right before the fireplace.
“Asshole.” I mutter under my breath.
“I missed you too friend.” He gives me a warm yet devious smile and a cozy hug. He tries to break away but I stop him by tightening my arms around him.
“No, wait. I did not realize that I need this until you embraced me.” I mumble against his neck.
It takes me a couple of minutes to let go of him, and even though it hurts me to admit it, I have a few traitor tears running down my cheeks. Nick notices this and immediately wipes them away.
“Clay told me you have been in a bad place lately. I did not realize that he meant it literally.”
I met Nick when I was at my lowest, when my life did not matter to me. He is the one who gave me back my value, who gave me the courage to become who I am today even though many think that my personality is not the brightest. Of course I had Clay as well, but Clay was broken as much as I was, in a way I think we still are. Nonetheless, I choose to believe that Nick assisted us in fixing the important parts of ourselves.
He also helped us through his magic more times than I care to admit. If he was anyone else he would have thought that the only reason we have him in our lives is because as a witch he can do things we cannot. Hence, the magical favors, but our friendship is something no shallow werewolf will ever understand.
“I have said it before and I will say it again if the next generation of alphas is distantly like the current one then the werewolf nation is doomed.” Nick declares as he sits comfortably on one of the couches.
The times that Nick actually communicated with Oliver and my brother are rare. However, they were enough to make him despise them. Despite being one of our pack’s witches, Nick has managed to stay away from the three high ranked assholes mostly by pretending to not be as powerful as he really is.
Just like me, he hates living in the Red Eclipse pack. He once went so far as to try and convince Clay and I to leave with him and never look back. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t tempted to agree but one thing stopped me from doing so: Clay. Even though I love Clay with all my heart, every now and then I find myself regretting that decision.
“The nation fell the second my brother was born, and he is a beta not an alpha. So I think it is a little too late to worry about that.” I sigh as I sit next to my friend.
“Are you okay?” he gives me a look of sympathy; he hates the idea that I live with my family under the same roof.
“You know that I hate being asked this question, but since you asked it nicely I will answer. I am okay, but I do not think that is why you forced your way into my subconscious. So what is going on?” Nick tries to give me a serious look, but he fails miserably. The witch has always been one to joke around.
“Oliver ordered Clay not to tell you this because he knew that you would try to interfere. I cannot believe I am saying this but Clay agrees with him which is why he kept you in the dark about what I am about to tell you.”
Even Clay is starting to shut you out! Accalia’s words add salt to the wound; I never imagined a day when Clay would ever lie to me about anything. He is one of the two people that I trust. I fight the need to shed a few tears because I want to give my best friend the benefit of the doubt.
Shut up Accalia!
“And yet he asked you to tell me, typical Clay cannot disobey his precious alpha.” I force a hopeful smile on my face.
“No shadow, he did not.” the way he says these five words shows me that Clay does not deserve the benefit of the doubt; he betrayed me for Oliver and Stefan.
I suddenly lose the urge to cry, if he is going to be disloyal to our friendship then he does not deserve my tears.
“Then why am I in your head? Why are we having this conversation right now?” I do not try to hide the shock and uncertainty in my voice.
“Because Clay and I, we do not share the same opinion. You how I feel about the way male wolves treat their women. Most importantly, the alphas are in no place to play judge, jury and executioner, and they want to blame all that is wrong in the world on an innocent man?” He pulls his arms up in defense when I give him a look at the word ‘innocent’.
“Okay, yes, yes, he has done horrible things in the past, but they cannot blame him for the murders that are happening right now based on what happened five years ago without any proof. No one deserves such injustice.”
I want to deliver a smart comeback, but I agree with him. His past may not support him, but Alexander Cresswell may not have anything to do with this.
“So what is the big secret that no one wants me to know?” for some reason I forget about Clay and focus on what Nick is about to share with me.
“Well, the alphas have actually made a decision. They decided to send twenty eight warriors to the borders to check it out; to see if their accusation is true. That is what they told the nation anyway.” Out of thin air, two glasses of red wine show up in his hands, he hands me a glass.
“And what are they not declaring?” I ask as I take a sip from my drink.
“The warriors have the green light to massacre the entire pack if they notice anything off.” I take a minute to go over what Nick just said, and however I look at it, the alphas really want to wipe out an entire pack.
“We cannot let that happen.” I blurt out. I cannot sit in Bellamy’s house and do nothing while innocent people die because of our alphas’ ignorance.
“How are they choosing the warriors?” I ask trying to gather as much information as I can.
“They claim that they have not discussed that yet, but according to Clay, they already have. Each alpha chose a warrior from their pack. If an alpha chose someone who did not attend the meeting then a witch transported them to our pack’s territory. They are meant to leave tomorrow at midnight to avoid anyone from the pack seeing them.”
Just when I thought I could not detest the alphas any more, they go ahead and do something like this! I will never understand how they can sleep peacefully at night knowing that they are ruining people’s lives with every decision they make.
“Are you okay? You zoned out for a moment there.” Nick waves his hand in front of me.
“Yeah, I am fine. I am just finding it a little hard to comprehend this insanity that is all.”
“If you cannot comprehend that then you have not heard the worst part yet.”
I cannot think of anything that can be worse than that.
Me neither Accalia.

“Well?” I ask in anticipation after waiting for Nick to say something for a few moments.
“Oliver chose Clay as his warrior.”
The entire world around me freezes; my heart beat stops as I take in what I just heard. That is why Clay did not tell me any of this; he feared that Oliver would choose anyone else. He feared disappointing his alpha, so he disappointed his best friend instead.
This thought makes me swear to myself to smack the bastard’s head against a tree the next time I see him. I know that eventually I will forgive him for this stunt, but I will make him regret ever lying to me; he will count to ten before even saying ‘good morning’.
“Oh no, you have that murderous look on your face.” Nick mocks my expression which earns him a smack on the chest.
“Luckily for you, this look is not for you.” I take the last sip of my wine and place the glass on the table. I get off the couch and take a turn around the room as if I am seeing it for the first time.
“So what are you going to do?” he asks eying my every step.
“What do you mean?” I stop in my tracks and turn around to face him. He too gets off the couch.
“Well, I know you well enough to know that you will try to prevent the alphas’ plan to take place, so what are you planning to do?”
“I do not know yet, but I can promise you that it will be epic.” I grin at the witch standing before me.
“I thought so, which is why I am giving you this.” He takes off one of his necklaces from around his neck and he puts it around my tattooed neck.
“It is spelled with magic, it has the power to cloak you, block your scent, and show you someone’s location. Also, it glows, there are four colors; each color has a specific meaning. Blue means you are in danger, red means you have been lied to, green means you are in the presence of someone who means you harm, and yellow means you are in a magical location.”
“Thank you Nick.” I offer him a genuine smile.
“You are welcome, but now you have to wake up. You have been out for a few hours and alpha Oliver and the gamma are getting really worried.” I do not fail to notice that he did not mention Stefan’s name. However, I would have been surprised if he did.
“Well, then I will see you again Fairchild.” I say hugging him.
“Yes you will Prior.”

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