Ryker was sitting in English Literature, wishing school was over. He glanced at the clock before looking back down at the paper he was scribbling fiercely on. Ryker was trying to get the paper finished before time to go home. Between getting out early and having his work done, he figured he’d have more time to spend with Ember tonight.
Suddenly a pain ripped through his head. This caused him to let out an almost silent groan as he threw his pen down and grabbed at his head. He saw his teacher, who was a werewolf too, glance up, probably having heard his groan.
Just then, another pain shot through his head as he heard Ember cry, ‘Ryker, help me!’ Ryker didn’t even question how he was hearing his mate in his head. Instead, he looked at his teacher, who gave him a slight nod. At that nod, he jumped from his seat and practically ran for the door and down the hallway.
Once outside, Ryker glanced around, and spotting Ember’s car; he headed for it. Since he was un-shifted, his senses weren’t as strong as they could be. However, he did have enforcer blood, which meant his senses were still more potent than a regular un-shifted wolf.
Ryker sniffed, quickly picking up the scent of his mate and… someone. Or more than one someone else, possibly?
Suddenly another pain flashed through his head, this one followed by a woman’s scream. Ember’s scream.
“Ahh..!” Ryker yelled as pain flooded every part of his body.
Ryker took off running towards the woods, his bones feeling as if they were on fire within his body. He felt his skin ripple as if something were crawling underneath it, and it caused him to hit his knees just inside the tree line. He began to sweat as the pain continued to rip through his body, leaving him breathless and weak.
“Don’t… don’t have time for thi- this,” Ryker grunted. His voice was now barely understandable as his teeth began to change into those of a wolf, filling his mouth. “Have to find… find Ember!”
Ryker yelled again as more pain flooded his body. He felt himself growing, changing, his clothing shredding and falling off. Looking down at his hands, which he’d flattened on the ground to hold him up, he watched as dark fur covered them. His nails were growing long and sharp. His gaze moved up from his hands, looking at his now white fur-covered torso, his coloring that of a timber wolf. Reaching up then he felt his head. He now had the ears and snout of a wolf.
Ryker let out a growl as he managed to stagger to his feet… paws…? A glance at his lower body revealed that he now had the back legs of a wolf. Yet he stood upright on them.
Wolf, yet not a wolf. Shaking his head, Ryker growled again, even as something inside seemed to take over his mind and body. “Must find omega mate!” Then he shot off into the trees, following his mate’s scent of honeysuckle.
Wolf’s ears soon caught the sound of male voices and laughter. He also heard the whimpers of his mate. He growled. “If they have hurt her, they will die where they stand.”
Stopping at the tree line, at the edge of a clearing, he paused. One never burst in, unknowing what was waiting for him—a life lesson from his father.
Two men held his omega mate, one on each side of her. A third man had ripped her shirt from her and was fixing to yank her pants down as the fourth man stood watching.
His omega was twisting, crying, begging them to let her go as they laughed. She had a handprint on her cheek and a knotted bruise on her forehead.
Wolf’s lip curled up in a growl. They would pay dearly for those marks. An angry growl ripped from him, causing birds to scatter with angry squawks.
The two, holding her, turned with twin growls of their own. A quick sniff told him they were also wolves.
“Give the girl to me and kill him,” the fourth guy yelled. He took ahold of Wolf’s omega as the other three shifted and headed toward Wolf.
They stopped with a startled yelp as Wolf stepped from the shadows of the tree line and growled.
“He may be a freak, but he’s only one freak. Take him!” The fourth guy told them, yelling once more.
Wolf snarled at being called a freak.
Hearing his sweet omega cry out again, he glanced her way. The fourth rogue was trying to drag her off into the trees on the other side of the clearing.
Wolf growled and attacked the first rogue to reach him, quickly snapping his neck before taking on the second one. That one lasted a bit longer since the third attacked him from behind.
The sound of a scream filled the air, and Wolf quickly turned to find his omega trying to get off the rogue’s shoulder as he started to run with her. Wolf let out a growl as he shook off the two rogues with a renewed energy.
Grabbing rogue number two, Wolf snapped his neck. Rogue three started to run, and Wolf gave chase, quickly snatching him up and ripping out his throat. Then with a deafening howl, he headed for the fourth who had his sweet omega. A glance back told rogue number four he was going to lose. So, he cut his losses and dropped the girl. Then, the rogue shifted into his wolf and ran.
Wolf stopped next to his sweet omega, dropping into a crouch.
She was whimpering and crying as she lay on the ground.
With a whimper of his own, Wolf reached out to gently pull her to him.
Crying, she jerked up and away, staring at him with wide tear-filled eyes.
Wolf whined pitifully. Did his omega mate not want him? Was she scared of him? Wolf whined again, this time in pain as he slowly turned from her.
Ember sniffed, wiping her face as she stared at the half-wolf man in front of her. She’d never seen anyone like him before. He’d saved her, but who was he. Ember knew her omega senses were weak, but she wanted to know who this wolf was. So, taking a deep breath, she drew in the unique scent that all wolves have. She felt her she-wolf stir as his scent hit her senses, letting her know he was her mate.
The male wolf turned to look at her with sad yellow-green eyes. Ember moved a bit closer, her hand moving slowly up to rub at his muzzle. Wolf Ryker closed his eyes, giving a contented groan as electricity sparked between them.
“Oh, Ryker,” Ember whispered, knowing for sure then that it was him.
Wolf Ryker opened his eyes back up and gazed at her unblinking. Then slowly, as if he feared her reaction, he once more reached for her.
This time, she flung herself into his waiting arms with a sob of relief. Shoving her face into the fur at his neck, Ember cried, “I cried out for you, but I didn’t know if you would hear me!”
Wolf Ryker grunted, pulling her closer. “My sweet omega mate.”
Ember pulled back in surprise. In a slightly gruff voice, his words flowed through her mind like a soft breeze.
Wolf Ryker was watching her, so Ember smiled before snuggling once more into him. He slowly stood, cradling her body against his.
Ember wrapped her legs around his waist, and he took off in a slow jog. His even pace and steady heartbeat soon lulled her into sleep.
Wolf jogged slowly into his backyard, then walked to the back door. Glancing down at his sweet omega mate, he took notice of her closed eyes where her head lolled on his shoulder and her even breathing.
Asleep, I will put her to bed.
Reaching for the doorknob, Wolf growled at how hard it was to open the door with his big, paw-like hands and long nails. It took some doing, but he finally accomplished it. Stepping inside, he quietly pushed the door closed so as not to wake his omega but froze when he heard something.
“Ryker? Son, is that you?” He heard his father call out.
Wolf shook his head and whined.
This slight sound had his father almost running from the living room only to freeze at the sight of Wolf. Father stared at him for a long moment, his eyes wide before clearing his throat and stepping closer. “This wasn’t what I expected for your first shift. Although you have my coloring, leaving no doubt that you’re mine.
Wolf gave the nod, then glanced down at his mate.
“Is that Ember? What happened to her and why is she… um…” Father stopped when Wolf looked up and growled lightly.
“Mine! You not look at her.”
Father looked startled, letting Wolf know he had heard Wolf. “Okay. Well, put her in your room. Then we’ll talk.”
Wolf nodded and took his sweet omega to his room. Lying her down, he covered her up before going back to his father.
“Can you shift back?” Father asked.
Wolf shook his head. Now was not the time for that. Instead, he began to explain what had happened. “Rogues, four, take omega mate. I kill three and take mate back. One run.”
Father frowned. “This isn’t good. We haven’t had a rogue sighting in… probably three years now. You said one got away?”
Wolf nodded again.
“I need you to show me where you sow them, son. There may be more.”
Wolf glanced toward where he’d left his sweet omega. He didn’t want to leave her, but… Father was right. Rogues were bad news. So, with a nod, he followed his father out the door, stepping off the porch just as his father shifted into his wolf, giving a loud warning howl.
Wolf took in what father wolf looked like, breathing his scent deep into his memory.
As they quickly ran toward the woods, an answering howl was heard.
They’d soon have back-up, Wolf thought as they continued to run.