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Luna- Mate to Alpha
Gamma- soldiers/hunters, mostly male
Zeta-Teachers/Doctors/Cooks/Scientists, men and women
Xi- Trackers, male
Delta- Heir to Alpha
Bioforms- human-like form for Lycans
Biosuits-suits that wrap their forms in transformation
Lycans- a species that can transform from wolf to a human-like form at will.
Kona dipped her whole snout into the lake. Fish were a rare treat and especially hard to capture but she was sure after watching a family of bears go at it for the last half hour that she could do it too. She could feel their eyes on her, wary of her presence while at the same time entertained by her attempt. Her white fur shivered from the freezing temperatures, and she shook the flakes of water off least they suck into her skin. Her concentration would not be thwarted. She wanted fish. The smell of them had permeated the air as she sat by the rushing river, enjoying the late afternoon sunlight.
Her brother’s voice hollered from the riverbank, “You should just ask.”
Ask, she scoffed. She would not ask a bear for help. She could do it her damn self. Call it stubbornness but if a bear can do it, so can she.
She snapped at a passing fish but it was too quick and smacked her nose with its tail. Kona backed out of the water, shaking her head, snorting, gaining a quick breath of air before she shoved her snout back in. It didn’t look that hard. True, they had better paws than her. Bears had paws that could grip, nails that could stab. Her paws were flat with curved thick nails on the ends. A wolf chases its prey, they don’t fish for it.
Kona snapped once more but the trout dived out of the way. She raised her head for some air, glaring back at her cackling brothers. They were in their Biostate, human form, with swim trunks on, laying on towels as they watched her. She huffed in their direction and then slipped her snout back in the water.
Kona couldn’t fail. She was the oldest. She had to set an example. No one got anywhere by relying on others. She would not rely on a bear to get her a fish that she herself could get. It just took patience. Unfortunately, Alpha blood doesn’t allot her much patience.
She pounced on a fish, splashing ice water all over her. She tried to dig her nails into it but the slippery little thing wouldn’t stay still. She tripped on a rock and submerged half her body before she bounced away, slightly whimpering. The bears weren’t the only ones humored by her. A set of otters laying on their backs watching her, cackled and clapped their tiny little flippers. She bared her sharp fangs before trotting to the riverbank. Her brothers were laughing and making rude little comments. She stood in front of them and shook her fur, thousands of ice droplets spreading out, smacking them. They shrieked and jumped out of her way. Her laugh came out as a cracked growl.
A small baby bear approached slowly, his big fat butt wiggling in their direction as he dragged a row of trout. He dropped it before getting too close and then ran back to his mother.
Danny, her youngest brother of ten, ran to it, waving, “Thank you.” He picked it up and glanced at her with a satisfied smirk then darted into the woods back to town. Kona wished he had left one behind. She didn’t want her meat cooked. She wanted fresh, raw sushi.
Mason patted her wet head. He was nineteen, nearly two years younger than her. He knew how much she hated to fail at anything. “Come on. We’ll try again tomorrow.”
Kona huffed at him. She jumped back into the river. It’s like the water dropped ten more decrees.
“Lyric and I are going back. Don’t stray off or Dad will freak.”
She waved her tail in acknowledgement. She was safe deep in the forest. There was nothing for miles, no humans, no hunters, and certainly no other lycan packs. If anything approached, the bears would alert her.
This forest was her home. It was deep in the state of Colorado, somewhere between Denver and Mount Rushmore. She’s never been outside of the electric fence that surrounds the thousand acres of freedom. Within it, her family, her father’s family, and her mother’s all live on a plantation. There’s nearly a hundred of them in the small town. It’s boring and quiet most of the time but it’s hers. Her future pack.
Kona nearly caught a fish but it slipped through her fangs before she could ensnare it. How do the damn bears get it done? It looked so easy. She shook her head, eyeing the bears a hundred feet from her. They stood at the edge of a small little waterfall, a handful of black bears feeding together.
It was in that instant, she smelled something forgeign. She sniffed the air, the strange scent weaving through the air. The bears were clueless with the scent of dead fish in their surroundings. Her sense of smell was stronger by a long shot. She sniffed the air again. The scent was gone. Her blue eyes flicked over to the tree line. She snapped her head behind her, searching, eyeing every moving leaf. Her ears perked up, honing on little sounds. The problem with the woods was that they were never quiet. Something was always moving. She knew what little noises to ignore and which ones to inspect. But nothing was out of the ordinary.
Kona eased her stress, taking a breath to go back to fishing. Except once again she caught a strange scent. Her body once more stood at attention and she directed her gaze to the bears. A cry of warning and the bears turned their fat heads to something across the river. For a moment, Kona couldn’t see anything and then, stepping from behind a thick tree trunk, a wolf stepped forward. Its head down, its fangs sharp in a violent growl. Its fur a dark brown with shades of black. It was concentrating on a small baby bear eating a fish on the riverbank.
Kona’s heart leaped and she ran quickly, jumping out of the water to race along the mud.
The other wolf didn’t hear her until the last second and its eyes widened at the sight of her. It ran from her, dipping back into the forest. Kona wasn’t going to let it go. She had never seen a stranger before. She was taught that her family was the only breed of wolves. How could there be an outsider? It wasn’t family. Its smell too new and its fur completely different from her own.
She followed it for miles. It never stopped, running hard and swift. It was difficult, travelling on foreign land. She had never been this deep before, she didn’t know the lay of the land as well as this stranger seemed too. It kept moving like it had a destination, but the electric fence reached all boundaries of her home. There was no exit except for the main entrance at the compound and that was guarded day and night.
They reached the fence, its faint humming interrupting the flow of natural habitats. Trees were cut around it, grown in awkward shapes to avoid its electric touch. They raced alongside it, faster now with a straight path. She could feel her heart pounding, her body’s muscles stretched and overused, but the adrenaline wouldn’t keep her from failing.
Then the stranger dipped into a hole. She didn’t dare follow an unknown path and she stared down into the darkness, waiting.
Noise sprung up behind her and she spun around to see the same wolf on the other side of the fence.
It continued to run until it realized shortly that she wasn’t following and it turned around to look at her. Kona scanned every inch, memorizing every unfamiliar feature. Its tail was longer, its legs skinnier, its fur thinner and its ears were long and pointed. Everything about it was wrong. From its existence to its exit to the outside world.
How could it exist outside the fence?
The stranger jotted forward. Every step it took, Kona took a step back. Was it a Lycan like her or a simple-minded creature? Could it transform to a bioform? What pack was it from? Who did they belong too? Where did they come from? Does her father know?
It tilted its head to the side, looking her over as if she were the alien creature between the two of them. She huffed, snorting, aggravated by its existence. It began to jot alongside the fence. She refused to stop following, so many questions, so many thoughts. She didn’t know if she was imagining it or not. Was it real?
It jumped and sprang into a run and she rushed after it. It stopped suddenly and she tripped over her feet to stop with it. She could hear a deep throat cackle, an odd sound to be sure but familiar to her. Wolf laughs all sounded like strangulation. The creature was playing with her but she didn’t want to play. She wanted to talk to it but because it wasn’t pack, she couldn’t communicate with her mind. It spun in a circle and waited for her to do the same.
Was it testing her intelligence? Was it wondering if she were Lycan as well?
She slowly turned in a circle, keeping her eyes on it. It approached the fence, putting its nose up near the electric metal. She took a step closer, terribly afraid and yet terribly curious. She wanted to touch it, to figure out what it really was.
“Kona!” A voice echoed in the distance.
The stranger looked toward the voice and then met her eyes again. It began to back up but Kona stepped forward, she didn’t want it to leave. She wanted to meet them. To transform and have an actual conversation. She whimpered, asking it to stay but it shook its head. Another yell of her name and it darted further behind the trees. It turned to look at her, the same fear in her eyes were in its. It jumped up on the tree, scratching it with deep claws, ripping the bark. It pointed its nose on it and then nudged its head to her. It was telling her to come back.
She couldn’t give it an answer. She didn’t know if she could ever come back. If only for its safety. If her father found out, he’d kill it.
When her name was called again, she ran toward her brother’s holler, if only to keep him from noticing the hole in the fence and the intruder beyond it. Her heart pounded, her breath in heavy pants. She was shaking she knew.
Kona ran toward her brother. The moment he saw her, he visibly went from fearful to angry. He transformed into his wolf, white fur with black paws. He was slightly smaller than her but thicker in fur. He nipped at her as she passed, ‘I told you to stay put. You gonna get me in trouble.’
Not only was Mason her brother but he was also her best friend and she almost screamed at him what she found. She was staring at him, panting, her excitement palpable. The creature was her very first secret, her first wild adventure by herself, shared with no one else. She found herself wanting to keep it, just for a little bit, to replay the images again in her head. But most of all, she didn’t want to put the creature in danger. Mason, despite being loyal, had an obligation to Alpha. He’d tell their dad.
Kona bumped into her brother, to play, to forget about her sudden disappearance, or ask any questions. He bumped her back, nipping at her ear and she bounced forward, dipping and diving through the trees and as easy as that, it was forgotten.
But not for Kona. Not even close.
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