The Culling

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Chapter 10

Darcy listened to the fighting as he struggled to get the ropes untied. The rogues had been smart enough to use silver strands in the rope. He almost couldn’t believe that a femme wolf took down three rogues as easy as she had claimed. For some reason, her voice sounded very familiar.

When she kept taunting the two rogues that had stayed with him, he realized why he recognized the unknown wolf’s voice; it was Phoebe, the guard who had gone pack hopping with him. His wolf perked up at her wolf and they struggled harder to get untied. He couldn’t explain why his wolf was so drawn to her, but at that moment, he didn’t care why he felt a pull towards her.

The two rogues raced out of the cabin and Darcy’s heart almost stopped. Phoebe had easily taken care of the first three, but those two rogues were the sizes of war horses. It would have taken an alpha to defeat one, let alone both. Suddenly, a deafening growl echoed throughout the clearing and Darcy’s blood ran cold. The fighting outside grew louder and fiercer.

Just as his ropes snapped, everything turned quiet. Dread filled him as he slowly picked himself up and shuffled over to the door. Slowly, as if not wanting to see the carnage, he poked his head outside. What he saw shocked him speechless. A large female silver-black wolf stood over two dead bodies. Her coat was stained red from both the blood of the rogues and her own. Her whole body was shaking as her sides heaved quickly, trying to draw in oxygen.

“Phoebe?” Darcy called out softly, making the wolf’s head snap towards him. The solid golden orbs told him that her wolf was in control. He watched as she stood tall and limped towards the cabin. The wolf barked twice at him and then nodded over her shoulder. It took him a minute before he realized that she wanted him to start walking.

“I don’t know where we are. They made sure I was blindfolded on the way here.” The wolf let out an exaggerated huff before turning around and started limping towards the woods. It dawned on him that she wanted him to follow her. Leaping off the small porch, he jogged after her, stepping over the rogues bodies. When they returned, he would have to send someone back to make sure that the mess was cleaned up.

Hour after hour they walked and Darcy watched as the guard in front of him started to walk slower and slower. Letting out a sigh, he took a step towards her. “I could carry you. It would save your energy, we would get back faster.” The she-wolf snapped at him while making sure to put several feet between them. Holding his hands up in surrender, he mockingly bowed his head. “You don’t want to be touched. Understood.” She growled softly at him, and Darcy couldn’t help but chuckle softly at her.

Suddenly, he saw her tense and come to a quick stop. She looked over her shoulder at him before sitting on her hunches and letting out a loud howl. Darcy was confused until he saw several wolves appear before him, his father being one of them. The king and Captain Taggart shifted and hurried towards the prince.

The king embraced his son, the worry that had been written on his face now faded away. Joy and happiness had taken its place. “Darcy, my boy, how did you escape?”

“Phoebe found meFather. She managed to defeat the rogues that were holding me and then she led me back here. We need to get her to the doctor. She fought at least five, and she’s injured.” The king’s eyes fell to the wolf that had been patiently sitting several feet from the small gathering, watching the surroundings with a watchful eye.

“Thank you Phoebe.” The king spoke softly, yet she still heard him. The wolf gave a bow of her head, and the king saw her body weave a little when she raised it. His eyes then noticed the still drying blood that covered her fur. How did she find Darcy so quickly? He asked himself as he slowly stepped towards the guard. Suddenly, their previous conversation came to mind and he looked back to Darcy and then back to Phoebe.

Understanding dawned in his mind. Darcy and Phoebe were mates, but only Phoebe knew this. “Phoebe!” A voice called out and everyone turned to watch as Lincoln rushed towards his sister. Darcy watched, jealousy filling him. It was another feeling that he couldn’t explain that was connected to the woman who was beginning to fill his mind.

Were they mates? He couldn’t help but wonder as he watched the man embrace Phoebe. The thought made his heart hurt and his wolf growl softly. He watched as the wolf crumpled and the man gently picked her up before hurrying back towards the pack house. Darcy watched her go before swearing to find his mate as fast as he could. He couldn’t afford to develop feelings for another wolf that wasn’t his mate, and especially one who appeared to be already mated.

With an ever growing heavy heart, Darcy turned and slowly followed his father back to the pack house. But try as he could, he couldn’t get Phoebe off his mind.

“Your sister will be fine Mr. Rivers. The blood that you’ve donated was enough to help her wolf heal the wounds that she had.”

“When will she wake up Dr. Myers?”

“It’s my best guess that at the moment, her wolf has control. Whenever it returns control to Phoebe, she’ll awaken then.” I heard Lincoln sigh before the door was shut. Letting my eyes flutter open slowly, I realize that I’m lying in a hospital bed. How in the world did I get here? I wondered as I slowly pushed my body up.

A soft groan slipped from my lips and I heard footsteps hurrying towards my room. “Phoebe?” Lincoln called out as the door opened. “Hey bubba, don’t yell,” I say softly, chuckling a little. My head was pounding a little. “How did I end up here?” I asked still confused.

A look passed through his eyes. “You don’t remember?”

“The last thing I remember was going after my charge’s scent trail. I found him being held in a cabin with five rogues guarding him. I managed to draw the first three out and kill them quickly. The last two were larger and harder to kill. The last thing I clearly remember is seeing red as my wolf took control.”

Lincoln stared at me before taking a seat beside the bed. “You’ve never had walls weak enough for your wolf to take control unless you let her.”

“I know, but this was different.” I whisper softly, my eyes looking out the window. “How was this different? You’ve always been in control ever since you were six years old.” Lincoln whisper yelled at me. “You wouldn’t understand.” I tell him just as the door opened.

Lincoln opened his mouth to reply to me but a voice stopped him. “Lincoln, do you mind if I spoke with Phoebe for a little while? In private please.” King Stone had come to see me. Lincoln nodded once at the king, looked back at me and then left my room quietly.

He took the seat that Lincoln had vacated and just looked at me. I could only hold his gaze for just a moment before the secret that I had been hiding forced me to look away. I wasn’t sure what he would think of me once he learned what I had been hiding from him, and from Darcy. Every wolf alive knew just how important mates where, especially if they were as important as the future king or queen of the were people.

“How long have you known Phoebe?” He spoke softly to where only I would be able to hear him. Though the walls were thick, they were sound proof. “I’ve had suspicions for a while now Sire, but it wasn’t until the attack several days ago that I was certain.” As I spoke, I felt his eyes on me but I couldn’t bring myself to look at him.

“I’ve been struggling for the past few days in how to tell someone. Being a Guard has been my life dream, not once have I ever thought of a mate. Then, bam, I punch him out because he wants to defy your orders.” A soft chuckle came from the king and I found a small smile taking over my lips as well. “I thought that I would be content spending the rest of my life as a guard, protecting my charges, and up until the day I discovered who my mate was, I was content.

“But then I realized that I had a duty not only to you and the Royal Family, but I had a duty to the rest of our kind as well. The Moon Goddess has appointed me as Darcy’s mate, and it’s not up to me to question her. So, with your permission Sire, I’d like to tell Captain Taggart that I’m stepping down from the Guards, and then I’ll tell Darcy.” Quiet filled the room and I finally met the king’s gaze.

“I almost wish that his mate was another she-wolf Phoebe. I know for certain that Captain Taggart will hate to see you go. You have been a blessing to the Guards. When Darcy comes to my office tomorrow morning, you should follow him in after a few minutes.” The king stood to leave but turned to face me again. “You know Phoebe; the Moon Goddess never makes mistakes in pairing of mates.” I nodded once and I was left alone. My life would be completely turned over tomorrow, and I wasn’t sure in how I would handle it.

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