Blood Moon (Marked #3)

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Preparations

I slept in my own room that night. I was pissed and I didn't feel like seeing Shay right now. I wanted to be a part of that fight too. It felt like I had to be there.

I was still laying in my bed and I had no idea what time it was. Then my door opened. "Go away, Shay!" I mumbled loudly. I got no answer but I could hear a set of feet lightly running across the floor. It didn't sound like something Shay could do.

I wanted to turn around to see who it was but I was too slow and someone jumped onto my bed and attacked me.

"Why are you still in bed, Rieka?" Everly asked as she jumped around to get me up. What the hell was she doing here?

"I didn't really feel like getting up... Everly, stop jumping around!" I said and grabbed one of her legs to make her stop. "Sorry, can't. Not unless you get up. We have work to do!"

Work? Was she referring to whatever Shay was talking about yesterday? "Not today, E. I really don't want to, " I said and turned around. I covered my head with my pillow, hoping that she would go away.

"You don't have a choice today, Rieka. We don't have a lot of time. Get up!" "A lot of time for what!? Why are you even here, Everly?"

"My, someone is grumpy this morning..." She said and stopped jumping. "Didn't Shay tell you yesterday?"

I sat up, going against every bone in my body. "He just told me that we had to start preparing. Never for what. He just kicked me out of..." I stopped myself before I went too far. She didn't know about Icarus just yet.

"... The Icarus fighting group?" She ended my sentence. It made me wake up. "How do you know about that?" I asked surprised.

"Shay told me about it this morning. He also told me that he benched you... I'm sorry. I know that you probably feel like you have a responsibility in this. You really don't but I know you well enough." She smiled.

I hugged her. "It isn't fair at all. He shouldn't just be able to bench me from my own blood!" She didn't exactly look compassionate.

"I'm sorry, Rieka, but Shay is right. If you look so much like that Diana, you really shouldn't be in that fight. It's too dangerous..."

Her too? Really? I let go of her. "But you can join it?" I snapped. "I have years of training behind me. I know how to handle a fight. Shay knows that..."

She took a deep breath. "But this isn't why I'm here today." "Then, why are you here?" I asked.

"To prepare you for the part of becoming a Luna." She finally exposed. "A Luna?" "Our Luna to be exact, " she finished.

"But we aren't sure if I'm ever going to be that!" I wasn't ready for that responsibility. I had other things to think about right now!

"It will be too late by the time you figure that out. The pack is already starting to expect things from you that you don't understand and you aren't ready for. We need to prepare you right now."

"But what if I'm not his mate. This will only crush me more!" I objected. This was another kind of commitment. If I started training to become their Luna... I don't know how I would be able to contain myself if it turns out that I am not supposed to take that place.

"We have to do this, Rieka. The other option will be too much for you to handle and the pack would go crazy."

"Why do these traditions mean so much to you?" I was already exhausted. Everly smiled as if she knew that she had won the battle. "Come with me and you will know, " she giggled.

"... Fine..." I surrendered and got up. "This better be important." I grabbed my sweat pants a reasonably clean shirt.

Everly stopped me before I reached the door. "Eh, no." "What?" I asked. She pointed at me and moved her finger up and down. "No. A Luna will not walk around like that."

"But we're not in public! Shouldn't I be able to wear whatever I want?" Everly just shook her head.

"Maybe when the maids aren't here. Besides, this preparation is not something you should be homely comfortable for."

She turned me around and pushed me towards my closet. "Let me see..." "Why do I have to change, Everly?"

She pulled out a dress from the closet. "You need to get used to these kinds of clothes." She looked at me and I could see her face making weird contractions.

She had basically known me my whole life and now she's judging me?! "You don't always have to wear dresses. Pants are fine too as long as it's with the proper top and not... Well, sweat pants, " she continued.

I ripped the dress out of her hands and started undressing. "Why are you suddenly so interested in what I am wearing? You know that I never cared about what I wore as long as I felt comfortable!"

She helped me zip the dress. "It's not me who cares. It's the rest of the pack." I turned around and let my hair fall.

"Liar. I saw you make a face..." It kinda hurt being judged like that by your best friend. She was silent for a little while.

"I'm sorry, Rieka. We have just always heard these stories about the Luna. About how she was the most beautiful and peaceful being in the whole universe. You will have to understand that our generation never had a Luna until now. We have expectations and I am getting a little caught up myself..." She apologized.

"I am just so excited. Yet a little terrified... That that Luna might be you!" "Terrified?" I asked. It was basically the only word I noticed in that sentence.

She looked away. "Oh... You know... You're going to be a great and just Luna but..." "But what?" I crossed my arms and waited for her answer.

"You're just not the picture-perfect Luna we all imagined... But we can change that!" She really kept digging that hole deeper...

"I don't want to change myself, E, " I complained. "Rieka... I don't want you to change either but you need to learn and adapt to the job of becoming the Luna. It's kinda like a queen. You expect her to behave a certain way and when those expectations aren't met... People start doubting the leadership and things fall apart. Please trust me on this! You know that you can be that goofy Rieka I know around me and around Shay..."

It was more understandable when she put it like that. Maybe it wasn't as bad as I imagined. It didn't hurt to try, did it?

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