Ember Rains (Book 1)

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Chapter 22: The Tracker

With a deep breath I turned the knob cracking the door open. In the doorway stood a fair skinned man with light brown hair and deep brown eyes. He was tall and stocky, built like a tank. He wore tennis shoes and sweatpants, also soaking wet. It looked as if he had run through the river to get here.

“Who are you and what are you doing here?” My voice was one step away from a snarl.

“Wow,” The man said, holding up his hands in a peace gesture. “I just came to talk to Myra.”

“Who are you?” I asked again, my voice no longer a hint of a snarl but the real thing.

The stranger frowned, examining me as if unsure how to respond to this simple question.

“Who are you?” He asked, suddenly serious.

His tone and expression had shifted. Up until this point he had seemed like a wandering random wolf. Now he had a calmness and determination that made me uncomfortable. His gaze seemed to see more than anyone else I had ever met before.

Despite this Brooke snarled, stepping forward out the door, trying to force the stranger to take a step back. He stood his ground, flinching only slightly.

“Answer my question first.” I growled, now less than a foot of distance between us.

“First answer this at least. Are you on her side or his?” He snarled back.

I was so used to towering over people it surprised me when he only stood a couple inches shorter than me. Despite the difference in height he stubbornly stood his ground.

“Always hers.” I snapped.

He laughed relieved, “Oh thank god dude. She has far too many dangerous enemies. If you were against her, that girl would be screwed. Dude you are terrifying.” He stepped back.

I stood there dumbfounded by the sudden shift in atmosphere. I was vaguely aware my mouth was hanging open but couldn’t seem to figure out how to fix that. I was stunned.

“So is she inside?” He asked, stepping closer again to peer around me.

I shifted automatically to block his view. And held up my hand.

“Who are you?” I asked again.

“Trystan?!” I heard Myra shriek excitedly from behind me.

“Trystan? The big brother? Trystan?” I asked, looking back at her as she ran past me wrapping her arms around his waist.

“What are you doing here?” She asked, suddenly pulling back.

I was fighting jealousy as well as frustration, I was not used to being ignored. However I was glad she had thought to put on a pair of pajama pants before coming out. She still wore my T-shirt which calmed me more than I would have expected. My mark was clear on her shoulder since her hair was pulled back. That and the fact I knew my scent was all over her comforted me greatly.

“I had a visit from…” He hesitated looking up at me before continuing in a language I didn’t understand. “Un amico comune. Dovevo assicurarmi che fossi al sicuro.”

“Stiamo bene. Cosa voleva?” She replied in a shaking voice.

“Voi.” He said adamantly.

Myra shuttered and I instinctively stepped towards her.

“What is going on? Also, since when do you speak spanish?” I asked

Trystan grinned, “Italian.”

“Whatever. How did you find us?” I demanded laying my hand gently on Myra’s back.

She leaned into me unconsciously.

“Quanto ne sa?” Trystan said to Myra.

“Everything, except what you can do. That’s not my secret to share.” Myras responded quietly.

I appreciated the english response.

“Thank you.” He said adamantly.

“Duh,” She rolled her eyes, then she added seriously. “You can trust him though.”

“Will somebody please tell me what’s going on?” I massaged my forehead with my free hand.

“She’s telling me I can trust you.” Trystan explained.

Pride filled my chest and I smiled down at her. I had worked so hard to prove that I was trustworthy to her. Hearing her say it put me on cloud nine.

“Victor came to my place looking for you a few weeks ago. We had already left, Ali saw him coming. I know I promised not to but I had to find you and make sure you were okay.” He explained, seeming suddenly exhausted.

“I don’t want you involved…” Myra started.

Trystan laughed humorlessly, “When are you going to get it though that head of yours. I’m your brother, I’m in as deep as you. You could use the help.”

“How did you find us though?” I asked for what felt like the millionth time. “I know nobody who knew where we were would tell you. This place isn’t on any map, only the two packs that use it know it exists.”

Trystan looked uncomfortable but Myra nodded encouragingly.

“I’m a tracker. If I have met somebody and know their scent I can find them no matter how far away they may be.” He admitted looking suddenly nervous.

I understood his hesitation, being different was dangerous. I had unknowingly asked him to show his cards before I showed mine.

Taking a deep breath I extended my mind, repelling the water from his clothes drying him instantly.

“Hey you didn’t set my pants on fire this time.” He smiled at Myra who blushed deeply.

“That was Richard, not me. I probably would at least leave you steaming still. He has more control.” She admitted, embarrassed.

“More training, you’re getting better.” I said, earning a smile.

“Wait, you do the whole fire thing too?” Trystan asked, shocked.

“No,” I said, collecting all of the water from his clothes and forming a massive ball in between us. I froze it solid before allowing it to drop. With the faults and weaknesses I had put in the ball all that survived was a perfect water droplet. “Water.”

Myra rolled her eyes, “Show off.”

Trystan laughed, “See I knew you were scary. Damn.”

“Wait.” Myra said, suddenly concerned. “Where is Alison?”

“Oh,” Trystan face palmed, “She’s going to kill me. She’s waiting about a mile away. I didn’t want to bring her if I didn’t know it was safe.”

“Well go get her quickly. Then you guys need to come in. There’s a room available for you.” Myra said determinedly.

A faint worry spread from her and over me I reached down, taking her hand and smiling at her. She calmed quickly, I wondered what she had been worried about.

“Thanks.” Trystan said before bolting.

“You don’t mind do you?” She asked nervously.

I chuckled, “We will have to share a room now.”

She blushed, lifting her face to kiss me deeply.

“Good lord woman. You’re going to be the death of me.” I gasped after a minute.

She chuckled happily. Then leaned into me and watched the edge of the trees nervously.

“So,” I whispered, pulling her closer. “You trust me?”

I couldn’t help but remember the first time I had asked and how she had said no. I anxiously waited as she slowly looked up at me. She looked somewhat embarrassed but still happier than I had seen her before.

“Yes, I do.” She blushed, the color emphasizing the red in her hair.

I wanted to take her in my arms and never let her go. From that moment I realized I had a family now. I was no longer fighting to obtain them; they were mine. With that I lifted her up enough that I could devour her succulent lips more easily.

She chuckled, wrapping her legs around my waist. Brooke snarled ravenously and I groaned quietly.

“Dude, that’s my sister.” Trystan’s voice barely registered, but Myra pushing away did clearly.

“Oh, leave them alone. Just be happy she finally found her mate, and he accepted her.” A tall thin redhead spoke, punching Trystan in the arm.

“Ali!” Myra shrieked, running over to the women.

They embraced and jumped up and down with squeals of delight.

“I told you the new moon pack was your safe zone.” Alison grinned widely, her violet eyes leaving me stunned.

“You could have told me why.” Myra grumbled.

Alison took no notice of this. Instead she walked up to me and gave me a quick hug.

“It’s so good to finally meet you!” She beamed after pulling away. “Don’t worry we are going to be just like siblings. Also you will make an amazing Alpha when all of this is past.”

“I’m a Beta.” I said, stunned.

“I know, but that won’t last forever.” She smiled knowingly. “And the room is perfect.”

Then without another word she walked right past me and into the room I had been planning on offering them.

“Sorry,” Trystan said awkwardly, “She takes some getting used to.”

Myra laughed.

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