Punishment is in order
“Shift.” The Alpha ordered in his stern voice.
“I command you to SHIFT.” The Alpha demanded even more fiercely but to his disappointment nothing happened.
Callan was now thirteen and unlike his fellow counterparts he was unable to turn into a wolf. This had never happened before. Usually every shift occurred on the first full moon after eight years of existence or in some cases ten years from birth. Being the only child of the Head Warrior, Callan was expected to be next Warrior in line for the future Alpha to be. For this to happen, he had to have a wolf spirit in him.
“Focus Cally. Breathe. Focus.” The anxious father said with desperation. Callan closed his eyes tightly, gritting his teeth while applying full force to awaken the wolf inside him.
“Aargh.....” He breathed harshly closing his fists and knitting his brows together but he realized that it was a lost cause. He heaved a long sigh of exasperation. He looked to his father and said “I’m trying father, but its not working. I don’t feel anything, there is nothing inside me.” The boy was dejected and lowered his eyes immediately.
“YOU’RE NOT TRYING ENOUGH.” Callan flinched when the boy’s father raised his voice, clearly fuming over his son’s inability to turn. It had been a long struggle for him. He tried every magic, every potion and even made his son an experimental puppet, just to witness a glimpse of a ferocious beast. He wasn’t accepting of the fact that his son was born without a wolf.
“THAT’S ENOUGH JUSTUS!”
The environment around had became tensed suddenly. Callan realized that the situation was getting out of control because he had never seen the Alpha use his command over his father.
“Callan my boy, go to the Luna. She must be in the gardens. You will also find your mother there. Go now.” Without wasting any more time Callan ran like his life had depended on it. “Justus, come with me to my office.”
The Alpha knew that his close comrade and the best fighter of the pack was a broken man inside. His eyes had become glossy. His head hung low, like he had given up. He was stranded. With a heavy heart he finally accepted that his son was born without a wolf. Most importantly he was concerned for his boy as without a wolf his son had no future in the pack.
He would be just a normal being. A petty human.
He would not be respected, would always be looked down upon. Moreover he could never defend himself in case of any adversity. Every other living being would have an undue advantage over his son. Even the Omegas!
Justus absentmindedly followed the Alpha through the large wooden doors of the Alpha’s Office. As soon as they entered the premise, Justus stationed himself in the corner of the room while the Alpha impatiently paced besides his mahogany desk. After several anxious moments the Alpha looked at Justus with annoyance and a bit pity.
“I don’t understand this.. A thing as such has never happened in the entire Lycan history.” He knitted his brows and sighed “Yours isn’t an inter species mating. Both you and Mary are shifters. It is written in stone that a child shares the blood and legacy of his parents. This means that there should be a wolf spirit deep down somewhere within Callan. I’m sure of it.”
The room fell silent once again. Justus was pensive. Ragnar could feel the inner storm brewing in Justus. He wanted to aid his friend but felt helpless. After a few moments Justus was back to being himself - cold, hard and domineering. The Alpha could see the determination in the eyes of Justus. “You’re hiding your thoughts from me. I can’t read you. What are you up to?” The Alpha asked thoughtfully.
Justus rose his chin up “Thanks for your help Alpha but I have made a decision. In the best interest of my child, I want to move out of the Alpha house...”
Ragnar was shocked at the statement. Justus had been a part the Alpha family since his childhood. Not just Justus but the entire Ashton generations had lived in the Alpha house. It was a tradition for the head warrior to be in the shadows of the chief. Justus was like an extended family to Ragnar.
“NO!” Ragnar scowled. “I will not allow this. Think about Mary, think about Callan. What would Mary say? Callan has spent his entire life here. He wont be able to stay away from us. Moreover, how would you plan to perform your duties from afar?” Ragnar waved his hands in negation “No! I cannot accept this; even Zelda would not allow this.”
The Alpha kept walking around the confined space while Justus looked at the distraught man in front him. With desperation in his eyes he said “I have not requested for any favor in more than a century of our friendship. But I do now; because it is important for the welfare of my child.” Justus pursed his lips as his eyes became glossy “The villagers are already taunting Callan. Kids his age don’t want to be associated with him. People know that he can’t shift. The thought that he is cursed has been seeded in everyone’s mind.”
“How dare they say anything about Callan!” Ragnar’s nostril flared “I would look into it personally and make sure that this never happens again.”
Justus sighed with a curt smile as he shook his head “You stopping them with your command would only compel people to see Callan differently. He would be further drowned in his apathy. And to be honest I want people to respect Callan not because they were forced to; but because Callan has earned it. It is harsh to hear this Alpha but you standing up for my son will only cause ire and disagreements within the pack. People may lose trust in you. I don’t want that now, do I?”
Ragnar reluctantly nodded. He bowed his head and marched ahead as every step of his was heavier than the previous one. He tried to think a possible solution to come out of this predicament but nothing concrete came out of his brain.
“There must be some other way..” The Alpha could easily see that he was loosing the battle.
“You know that what I’m saying is the truth. There is no other way!” Justus looked at the alpha with sad eyes. “Callan would have a hard time growing up here. We cant force people to change their minds.”
The people were assuming that Callan was born without a wolf because he had been cursed by the higher entity- The LUNA. It was advisable to keep distance from a person of malediction. hence his entire life Callan was treated differently from his peers.
“We are leaving the Alpha house.” Justus said with finality in his voice.
“Where would you go? Where would you stay?”
“To the western borders near the boundaries of some humans and other shifters. Callan can easily adjust there.”
“You have already thought this through..!” Ragnar was now being his weak self. He felt like a part of him was being snatched away.
Through their mind connection, the Luna of the pack could feel every emotion of her beloved.
Justus, Mary and Callan want to leave the Alpha house.
And with that, Ragnar explained everything that transpired in his office.
After a long silence the Luna replied
Let them go.
Zelda! What are saying! They have been a part of our family for years. I don’t have a heart to let them go.
Yet we could not help them in their times of need. I have seen Mary, how worried she is for Callan! Her wrinkled face says a different story altogether. They are always brooded over the subject, dejected and burdened by expectations of their duties. Let them be a family once. They deserve happiness as well.
The Alpha knew in that moment that the Luna was right. The Ashtons deserved happiness. The Alpha house would only create problems for Callan. People would not readily accept him. While both Mary and Justus would always be thinking about Callan’s well being and safety. It would always worry them deeply that their only son was feeling out of place, left behind and struggling to adjust.
Covering his face with both his palms, the Alpha closed his eyes. He sighed heavily and almost chokingly uttered “I accept your request. But you have to attend the festivities and all the ceremonies with us. Do you promise?”
“I promise Alpha.” Justus replied with a smile of his own.
With that the Alpha went over the table and hugged his dear friend. A wave of emotions were hitting the Alpha as he was being nostalgic about every good thing that happened to him because of Justus; including Callan. In a short span of time Callan had become the apple of his eye. The boy was dear to both the Alpha and his mate.
A sudden knock on the large doors interrupted the moment.
“Come in Umberto.”
Ragnar looked away from the door clearly hiding his teary eyed face. The beta entered the door with two boys shadowing him. Hearing footsteps and their distinctive smells the Alpha recognized the guests. He went back to his seat and ran his hand through his hair in frustration “Einar. Garrick. What have you boys done now?”
Garrick took his submissive stance while the Alpha’s son was looking everywhere but his father. He knew that there was no escaping now, that his father would surely censure them for what they did.
“Umberto, please do the honors.”
With a small chuckle the beta looked at the boys and said. “They were found at the dungeons by our guards.”
“What!” Ragnar’s eyes widened in shock. Even Justus was disturbed by this information. The dungeons had cellars where shifters highly dangerous were kept.
“Not just that, they challenged Galen or more specifically; Einar dueled Galen.”
“You fought the Rouge Alpha! Do you even know how dangerous it is..” The Alpha spoke in a raised and concerned voice.
Einar looked to his friend who was visibly shaking and knew he had to handle the situation before the Alpha went mad and punished them. “We were just visiting the dungeons father, w-we wanted to study it actually. Garrick was very curious about that place.” Einar lied through his teeth.
The beta’s son looked sideways to his friend with shocked, angry narrow eyes. He knew that visiting the forbidden place was a bad idea but he was under the influence of his best friend. It had been Einar who took both of them to the dungeons even after reluctance from Garrick. “We reached every cellar and saw all the prisoners there. Most of the prisoners were ‘cordial’ but this Galen person was highly abusive. He challenged me. Called me a little boy.”
“That is because you are a boy Einar.” The Alpha said as a matter of fact.
“Yes but he did not had to point that out. I got angry and carried away.” Einar said firmly.
“You could have got injured or worse you could have gotten yourself killed! Why don’t you understand the seriousness of it? You did not even think about how you are putting Garrick in danger.”
“Oh.. ” Umberto snorted with a smirk.
“My Son was enjoying it actually. Am I right Garrick?” The beta raised an eyebrow and was sarcastic in his tone. Garrick gave a nervous laugh and shook his head as he whimpered in fear.
The beta continued “When the guards informed me I could not believe my ears. They both threatened to turn the guards against you, had the guards revealed anything. Thankfully they don’t have authority over anyone as of now. I reached the dungeons just in time or else.....”
“I warned you, you could’ve gotten in trouble. Do you even think before you act! What would I’ve told Zelda? What if...”
“Relax Alpha.” Umberto interjected with a calm tone “On the contrary It was the rogue Alpha who was in trouble today.”
Ragnar looked perplexed and amused. He visibly relaxed after soaking the facts. Einar had overpowered a mighty Wolf; an Alpha to top it all. He was delighted and proud to know that his son would one day be the strongest of them all. Given his lineage and by means of ‘that’ inherited power.
But he had to contain himself and act as the leader at the moment.
“I believe punishment is in order. Visiting the dungeons was a reckless move and it was highly dangerous. Moreover you had the audacity to override my orders. I don’t know when you will understand but rules are there for a reason Einar. You breaking them time and again is forcing me to take a firm step.” Ragnar took a deep breath “Umberto, handcuff both of them with silver until sunrise tomorrow.” Everyone around gasped in shock while Einar furrowed his brows in annoyance.
Justus made his presence felt “If I may intrude Alpha, don’t you think the punishment is a bit too harsh? They are still young. The silver can burn their skin and may permanently injure both the boys.”
It was known through ancient times that the metal could severely damage and could even kill the otherwise indestructible beasts.
“Silver will harm them only if they try to resist. This will teach them discipline. They must realise their mistake and start acting responsible now. Umberto please do the needful.”
It teared the three men deep within to know that the boys would go through hell for the next couple of hours but they knew it had to be done.
The beta mind-linked his junior to present the handcuffs. After a series of anxious breaths the handcuffs arrived. Garrick was about to cry. He was completely frightened and therefore Einar took the lead and asked the beta to handcuff him first. As soon as the metal touched his skin, a disturbing and painful sensation like a thousand needles piercing through his body was experienced by the Alpha’s son. He groaned painfully. He then quickly stood by his friend and held his left hand with his right in a manner to give him support. This gesture brought a smile to the faces of the men present there. Garrick was screaming with pain and was on his knees the moment the metal touched him bare. The pain subsided after a few stressful moments. Both the friends looked at each other with appreciation and smiled weakly.
“Garrick, Einar I am hoping you have learnt your lesson. Make sure you don’t make any more mistakes; at least for today.”
With a final bow of respect both the boys headed for the door.
Looking at Justus and Umberto the Alpha laid his heart out and said “The fierceness, strength and anger of Einar’s wolf worries me greatly. He already is as powerful as I am today. Thankfully the wolf is not greedy for the throne otherwise you could possibly see the end of me in the near future.” Both the gentlemen chuckled and nodded silently.
The Alpha was back to where he left the conversation.
“Umberto, I need you to do the paperwork for Justus Ashton and his family, Mary Ashton and Callan Ashton. They would be moving out of the Alpha house and residing near the western border.”
Umberto was shocked to hear this and looked into Justus’ eyes. The Alpha knew immediately that they were conversing through their mind-link. Umberto shed some tears for his beloved companion as he embraced him. He would miss the head warrior dearly.
“Don’t worry. I would be visiting the place everyday to perform my duties.” Justus assured the beta.
“It wont be the same as when you were here with us. But i guess Callan needs you more. You have taken the right decision in the favor of your son.”
“Thanks Umberto. I appreciate it.” Justus knew that Umberto understood his helplessness, he smiled weakly at him and returned his focus to the Alpha.
“Alpha I think i should take a leave; I need to go to Mary and explain what transpired today. She is worried sick by my emotions. I need to go and comfort her.”
“Ok Justus. I will make sure you have everything you need.”
“Thank you Alpha.” Justus took a bow.
With that, Justus left the office to find his mate. But as soon as Justus made his exit through the door, everyone could hear a loud and familiar voice.
The voice was screaming..
The voice was scared..
And the voice was of Callan...
Hey guys. Hope you like the beginning. Please don’t forget to review, vote, comment and follow.
This is my first story on Inkitt and I would really appreciate your review.
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