The boy and the girl.
By the time the sunset, Rey could no longer remember the number of people she patched up since she started. But one thing was for sure, it would take Brynn ages to heal all the injuries by herself. With the power divided by three, Rey could already see the end of the queue that formed in front of her.
One more broken bone, some burns on the hands and one not so good-looking stab wound, and then the worst one came.
“What can I help you with?” Rey gritted through her teeth. It took everything in her not to flee somewhere else.
She managed to get out of the not very comfortable conversation with her father right after their initial greetings because people in need were the priority and if it was her decision, she would avoid him until it would be their time to leave. He obviously had other plans.
“You know, it was really hard to get to you,” her father said, “had to bribe the little devil, that sorts people out. Apparently, if I don’t suffer from any injury, I don’t have the right to bother you. But a bar of chocolate seemed to change his mind fairly quickly.”
S hadn’t had the patience needed for treating injured people yet, so when he didn’t run around the woods, collecting herbs, Brynn needed for her potions, he crowned himself a professional sorter. Thanks to him, it was almost always ensured that the worst looking patients went to Brynn.
Lia understood the advantages of his new profession almost immediately and bribed him not to send any too bad looking injury to her because it might end up with her vomiting all around. Rey herself wasn’t very picky about her patients. She took whoever was sent her way if she was sure she had the skills needed to heal him.
But now that she thought about it, it was kind of weird she hadn’t healed anyone, she had close connections to in the past. It was mostly people she hadn’t met before and a couple of those that looked at her with sad eyes but made no attempts to lean the already awkward conversations the unpleasant way.
Rey wondered whether people close to her bribed S to be sent to Lia instead of her. If they did, the boy would have his stash of candies full for months.
“You shouldn’t try so hard,” Rey muttered, “I have nothing to say to you.”
“Look, I know, I am the last person, you want to see ...”
Her reply stayed overlooked as he continued: “But I came because I am sure, you have a lot of questions, you want answers for. And I can give them to you.”
He was right. Rey had a lot of questions, but she was not going to give him the satisfaction of asking. “Not really. No. Your pack or should I say ex-pack is quite talkative.”
“Then listen. Do you think, you can do at least that? I- ... there is something, I really need to tell you.”
His eyes held a hunted look as he begged her. Whatever it was, it had to be very important, but Rey’s stubborn side won: “I don’t see, why I should listen to anything you ....”
A howl sounded then.
The kind of howl that meant only one thing: the alpha was coming home, and he was letting his pack know.
“Damn it!” Rey’s father clenched his fists. “I thought, I had more time.”
As time progressed and there was still no sign of this mysterious new alpha, Rey’s curiosity got the best of her and she asked the woman she was currently healing.
She explained to her that the alpha went a little feral after he saw the consequences of the attack. They were able to calm him down eventually, and he ordered every wolf still capable of fighting to guard the borders of his territory. The wolves were only able to come back when the day and night shifts were changing, which, from the sound of it, was right about now.
“Listen to me!” Her father’s voice was filled with urgency. He reached out his hands to touch her, but Rey flinched so violently, they fell back immediately. “If I could shield you from any more pain, I would do it in a heartbeat. If I could, I would take you far, far away from here, but this pack needed your help. And I am so very sorry for what you are about to witness because it’s going to bring more heartbreak.”
Rey wanted to tell him she didn’t have a heart left to break.
She wanted to scream those words at him.
She wanted to carve them into his skin, so he would feel at least an inch of pain, they caused her, but as if S sensed her sudden thirst for blood, he ran towards them and encircled his small hands around Rey as much as the chair allowed him: “Did you hear that? We are about to meet the alpha.”
Wherever they went, this was always his favourite thing to do. He was fascinated by alphas. He wanted to grow up to be one and Lia always joked how smart he was for forming alliances from such a young age.
“Yes, we heard it,” Rey smiled at him, her mind still dwelling on the words her father said. Who the hell exactly was this new alpha?
It didn’t take long for two figures to walk out of the shadows of the houses in front of them. Their clothes were dishevelled, a clear sign of their recent change. As they came into Rey’s viewing distance, she recognised, the guy that came after them in one of them and the other one ...
Rey forgot how to breathe. Was it in and out or out and out?
Her nose registered the familiar smell of wild roses and cold fingers clutched her palm before Lia whispered in her ear: “Breathe.”
“I don’t understand,” Rey choked out eventually.
He hadn’t caught her presence yet. His eyes busy reuniting with his lover and other members of his pack. He paid no attention to a shaken-up girl, whose world was once again falling apart as she watched him kiss the other woman.
It was the sound of Rey’s choked up voice that finally spun his attention towards her and as their eyes met, the world around them disappeared.
It was only him and her for a minute.
The boy and girl from three years ago.
The alpha and his luna from now.
Except that wasn’t right.
Another woman to whom that title belonged stood by his side and Rey? She was just an intruder.