Twisted Fate

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Chapter 2

-Astrid-

It was early in the morning when the alarm on my cellphone woke me up. The siren repeatedly blasted in my ears along with the obnoxious snores from Derek. I tried to reach over him to get to the nightstand, but he suddenly moved to his side, blocking me with his broad shoulders. Meanwhile, Nicole was curled into a fetal position, hugging my legs for dear life.

To top it off, the decision of last night’s celebratory shots was right on my temples with a throbbing headache. Turns out, Nicole was hiding a second bottle of whiskey in her bag.

“The alarm,” I croaked, trying to wake my friends calmly. Derek and Nicole continued to sleep peacefully with the noise as if their senses weren’t heightened. I knew they were ignoring me, and my patience had run out.

“Derek! Nicole! The alarm!” I snapped. Derek quickly sat upright with a startled look on his face while Nicole flinched so hard, she released my legs, falling out of the bed with a loud thump. She laid on the floor instead.

Derek rubbed his eyes, “I told you we shouldn’t have brought those bottles,” He said to Nicole. She poked her head up from the floor, giving him a pointed look because he was down for the idea last night. Nicole groggily laid back on the floor, raising her middle finger to him. She was a lightweight though it never stopped her from being the influencer.

After sending my drunk friends’ home, I took a nice hot shower and dressed in casual clothing for my busy day. As I was getting dressed, I examined my wounds in the mirror. The only evidence of last nights battle were two small cuts on my arm. My leg and abdomen looked spotless and my bones in tip-top shape.

When I climbed downstairs for a quick breakfast, I found the rest of the house empty. My parents had already left for the hospital, and the twins were gone for school. I made sure to double-check the rooms before leaving the house in-case the twins decided to skip again. They had reached their senior year at the academy, and attendance was most important this semester.

When I got into my car, the first thing I did was call the main councils office from across the country. I needed to be sure my information concerning my rank within the pack was changed in their records. This was necessary for my transitioning ceremony to take place on Saturday. The werewolf council was extremely strict about this. Luckily, there were no issues with my information.

I hated their rules so much, mainly because of their stupid tests and training courses that all alphas were required to take. It did not matter if you were born alpha blood. The council needed to make sure you fit the part. In some cases, when one failed to meet these requirements, the council would go down the family line until one had proven themselves worthy. I always thought it was total bullshit.

By the time I’d ended the call, I had reached my place of work. Even though I took the day off, I wanted to be sure things were running smoothly before the big exhibition event next week.

“Good morning, Rachel,” I greeted my assistant first thing when I walked into the art gallery. She was sitting at the front desk, busy shorting out papers.

“Morning, boss,” Rachel smiled, standing from the front desk, “Can I get you some coffee? I made a fresh pot earlier,” She said keenly. Rachel was a member of my pack and had worked for me since I first opened my gallery. I valued her strong work ethic and dedication. I couldn’t have asked for a better assistant than Rachel.

“No, thanks, I won’t be staying long,” I told her, “I just came by to see if our new artists have signed their contracts?”

“I am only waiting on one more artist. He is expected to stop by this afternoon,” She informed me and shook her head, “Mr. Jenkins was indecisive about the commission agreement.”

I sighed in relief, “Good job for convincing that man.” She chuckled. Mr. Jenkins was a bit difficult to work with, but his art was exceptional. I had no doubt his paintings would be the first to sell.

Rachel and I continued to discuss important things about the event. Many artists were showcasing their work within my gallery for the first time while others returned from previous events. We expected an excellent turn out this year.

“The look on his face. Elias couldn’t believe you beat him so badly!” Rachel laughed. We were processing some payments online when she mentioned my battle with the alpha of the Scarlett pack.

“Elias lost like the pathetic dog he is,” I scoffed, looking back on all the times he’d bully me when we were pups. We’d hated each other for as long as I could remember. I was glad Jefferson picked him as my opponent, “He’s all bark and no bite,” I added.

“He’s so cocky, and he thinks all the women want him,” Rachel grimaced, causing me to throw my head back in laughter, “That’s because he hasn’t had a good look in the mirror,” I sneered. We continued to clown on the conceited alpha before her expression turned serious.

“You were amazing on the battle circle, Astrid,” Rachel said, genuinely,” I wish I could be strong like you,” She added with a look of admiration. I dropped my paperwork and turned to look at her thoughtfully.

“Rachel, you are one of the strongest females in the pack. You must believe in yourself. If you don’t believe you are capable, then you never will be,” I told her truthfully.

“I never thought of it that way,” She smiled and continued to comment, “But all those people who talk about you. It must be so hard to keep positive with all the awful things they say.”

I waved my hand at her, “The gossip bothered me a lot when I was younger, but now, I’m okay with it. People are going to talk shit anyways,” I shrugged it off. For the rest of the time, we worked in silence. Everything was set in place for the event, so I decided to leave. Rachel walked me out.

I collected my belongings behind the desk when Rachel asked out of nowhere, “Do you believe in all that crazy stuff?” The skin between my brows pulled in confusion, “What do you mean?” I asked, trying to figure her out. At this, Rachel shifted on her feet, awkwardly.

“You know…” Rachel hesitated, “The legend.”

I stopped and looked at her grimly. Most people believed it was real, while I’d tried my whole life to convince everyone it was just a myth, the infamous legend about how one demon-witch cursed my family line for generations until I was born. It was the exact reason my peers looked down on me.

“No,” I responded after some time, “It’s just some scary story told by my ancestors to trick the pups into obeying.”

“Ohh,” Rachel nodded. But the skeptical look on her face told me she’d believed in the legend. Everyone in the city did.

With this, I bid Rachel goodbye and left for the day. I didn’t want to get into an in-depth conversation about the legend. I hated talking about it and wished it would go away with time. Unfortunately, for me, it did not. It just worsened and twisted deeply with different versions far from the real one.

The next task on my to-do list was the dress shop called Marcie’s formal wear a couple of blocks from the gallery. I needed to find the perfect dress for my reception on Saturday evening. My mother couldn’t live with herself if there were no celebrations to follow the ceremony. I tried convincing her a simple dinner with close family and friends would do, but she was adamant about this.

On my way to the dress shop, I rolled down the front windows, inhaling the crisp cool air on this beautiful Thursday morning. The glorious orange colors in the sky shined brightly, waking the late risers of Silverhill, Pennsylvania. I tapped on the steering wheel to the radio at a stoplight.

The huge billboard sign to the right caught my attention, “Welcome to the city of the wolves,” I read the sign aloud in a mocking tone. Besides the historical landmarks and amazing scenery, Silverhill city was most famous for its urban legends and apparent supernatural sightings. The humans say the first werewolf lived here until his death back in the 1600s, hence the name. Though they were right about the wolf, he wasn’t the first to walk among us.

The city’s tourist attractions and myths have helped my kind stay hidden from the rest of the world. They’re all too caught up in the show to realize the truth behind it.

After an hour of looking around the dress shop and Facetiming Nicole for fashion advice, I finally settled on the asymmetrical off the shoulder dress. It was a bit revealing for the reception, but I liked the way my long legs looked in its thigh split. Plus, it was the only thing in black that caught my attention first.

As I was thanking the salesclerk on my way out, I bumped into a tall, muscular figure, “I’m so sorry,” I apologized right away, without bothering to look up. I tried to step aside, but the stranger had other plans for me. This person stepped in front of me, gripping my shoulder with one hand, and took my bag away with the other.

“Let me get that for you,” The stranger’s deep voice grumbled close to my ear. That’s when I got a whiff of his familiar scent. This person wasn’t a stranger at all. I knew exactly who he was. He was the alpha of the Gold Heart pack and my ex-boyfriend. I wanted to run away and hide under a rock, but the way he leaned in closer and gazed down at my lips, I knew he wouldn’t let that happen so quickly.

My day just got interesting.

-

Surprise! I knew my loyal readers were dying with the wait, so I'm giving you all these chapters early. The next update will be on December 1st as promised! Please, please, please comment on the chapters and let me know your thoughts!

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