Beloved Runt: Part I

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5- Edmon Huntington

I watched the pack warriors as they went through the drill. My face was the model of composure but inside I was a storm of conflict. These warriors were not the back woods boys they were thought to be. They were trained and they were trained well. Dalton the Alpha’s son and acting Beta knew how to push his men to hone their skills. Some of the men would rival even the royal guard.

I was put to ease somewhat this morning watching some of the warriors interact with the runt I met. It seemed that the other members were respectful of Artemis and even helped her with certain tasks. The girl had more than earned their respect. It was evident how much time she took preparing breakfast for everyone without any ire or complaint.

Artemis had an effortless grace in the kitchen. Her instincts naturally led her to take care of the other pack members in ways I don’t even think she realized yet. She made it even more evident when making my tea. Without even asking, she was able to prepare my tea exactly the way I preferred it, down to even using the same spoon you use to scoop the honey to stir the tea. Not wanting to draw to much attention to it I quickly took a sip of tea.

My observations of the girl were cut short when the Alpha’s son walked in. Upon seeing me he immediately walked over to protect Artemis from me. That only brought my light to her situation. I no longer thought this was a runt who was abused or mistreated. Instead her pack respected and protected her whil she in turn supported the carious members. These were the dynamics and mannerisms of a Luna with her pack. When a pack is without and official Luna it is common for another pack member to take on the roll until an official Luca could be found. It was strange that the Alpha and his son would try to hide this from me.

Later that morning I was in the records office with Dalton and Teddy go over the various records and account books. Their books were clean. Like squeaky clean. Everything had been meticulously accounted for.

“Everything in order me lord?” Dalton was impatient for me to be done. He obviously thought this a waste a time. You wouldn’t believe what I would find looking through old account books. Some packs who seemed strong actually turned out to be in crisis when you looked at their funds. That was not the case here. The pack was thriving. They had more than enough to meet their needs. Their funds were managed expertly and thus increased exponentially over the years. How are they able to achieve this?

“Everything see to be accounted for, except I was wondering if you could explain this figure here.” I handed the book to Dalton who looked at the page I was referring to. It was the yearly tax invoice detailing the deductions and dues to the crown. It was a bit complicated but through all the number a final sum was calculated and written at the bottom. Royal taxes are a tedious thing and can be easily mistaken if not done properly.

Dalton looked at the page lowering his brow in concentration. It was obvious he had no idea what I was referring to. After a minute he looked back up to me still confused.

“I’m sorry my lord I don’t know to what you are referring to. Is there something wrong? I can assure you if there is, it was not done intentionally. We work hard to make sure everything is true and in order.” Truth.

“I’m just curious how you got the figure written below.” I simply replied. It was a complicated calculation. The mind behind it was obviously well educated. I was curious to know who among their member had such skill. Dalton looked back at the page as if the explanation would magically appear.

“Why don’t you just get Artie to look at it?” Teddy piped up.

“Teddy!” Dalton yelled back.

“What? She’s the one who-“

“Teddy shut your mouth right now!” I could feel Dalton use his dominance to silence his pack mate, but the words were already said. Dalton looked at me in shock probably realizing how eccentric his outlash was. “Sorry my Lord. Teddy’s thoughts sometimes run away with him.” That was a truth but said to cover a lie.

“No matter.” I replied not wanting to give myself way. “I think I can figure it out.”

I held my hand out and Dalton cautiously handed me the book. I looked back at the page in question while really looking at the pair with my peripheral vision. Dalton was glaring at Teddy who had his head bowed to him. They were obviously having some sort of discussion through their pack mind link.

While they were distracted, I decided to investigate Teddy’s words. Out of my pocket I pulled out the note I was given with the socks. I placed it on the account page to compare the handwriting. They were a match. This led me to believe that is was Artemis who held to skills to keep the account books so meticulously. She was quickly becoming a person of interest.

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