Chapter 14- Gone
I came to a staggering halt as my body heaved in the air around me, everything burned and my lungs were grateful they were getting the air they needed to supply to my screaming muscles. I looked around but I didn't recognise where I was. I was deep into the emerald green forest now, the trees here were taller and had thicker branches which held enormous leaves, barely moonlight could pass through, little spotlights of white moon light danced across the forest floor in an eerie dance as the trees swayed to the howling music of the wind.
I placed my hands on my knees as I leaned forward to help catch my breath back and gain some of my energy back.
I know I shouldn't have run but I was scared, scared that I couldn't protect the people that I loved and scared that someone I care for was putting me in danger, as hard as I tried it move on and not think about my past this situation had brought it all back and made a fresh wound across my heart.
I sighed as I sat on the cool moss that covered the ground, what kind of Luna was I going to be if I was just going to run away at the first sight of danger. I was meant to be a leader of a pack, to stand alongside an alpha and oversee everyone, to be there in their times of need, to protect them, to care for them. I couldn't run away now when they needed me. Whether these vampires Ryker had invited to our land was evil or not I needed to be there to protect the pack I love.
With this thought in mind I got up from the damp ground and brushed any of the moss that might have stuck to my dress before I started to make my way in the direction I believed home lay in.
* * *
Dawn had broken by the time I finally made it back to the pack house, it was still quiet as I crept through the door and up the stairs praying that none of the stairs squeaked giving away my position.
I cringed inwardly as I waited on the stairs, trying to keep my balance. As I waited and listened to see if anyone had heard me, after a few more seconds I allowed my body to relax and carried on my ascent up the stairs back to my room.
I wasn't sure what I was going to say to Ryker when I saw him, I was praying he was still asleep so I could at least get some rest before having to face him.
I opened the door quietly and slipped in. I didn't know if I should be happy or disappointed that Ryker wasn't in our room but I tried not to think about it too much and the sinking feeling in my stomach as I got ready for bed.
* * *
Banging sounded around me but I was too tired to open my eyes, I snuggled deeper into the comfort of the bed, allowing the heat to lull me back to sleep. The banging noise sounded again and I groaned as I rolled over slightly looking towards the door. It took me a moment to realise where I was and what had been going on as the fog cleared from my mind.
I jumped up out of the comfort of my bed and pulled a dressing gown around me as I went to open the door. I wasn't sure who could be calling for me at this time in the morning as I glanced at the clock and saw it read 7:30am.
I felt like I hadn't rested at all and felt my muscles and brain clouded in fatigue as I made my way over to the door and pulled it open. Ryker's beta stood on the other side of the door, I hadn't spoken to him too much but I knew his name Diego, he was around 5"9, he had a stocky build with shaggy blonde hair, his brown eyes were warm and kind and I smiled awkwardly as I hugged my dressing gown closer to my body.
He looked away awkwardly as he noticed how I was dressed. He looked down at his feet and shuffled on them uncomfortably.
He cleared his throat and continued to look at his feet as he spoke to me.
"Is Ryker in there, we haven't seen him since last night and he is normally attending to his duties by now." He sounded concerned as he looked away from me and I couldn't help but frown as I looked at Diego.
If Ryker wasn't with them and he wasn't here with me then where the hell was he? I felt the panic starting to grow as I didn't know where he was. I felt it grip onto me and tighten like a coil around me, suffocating me.
I calmed my racing heart as I looked at Diego with widened eyes.
I heard my voice, it came out small and scared and Diego's head snapped up to me as I uttered the words.
"He's not here." I saw the worry that flashed through his eyes as he stared at me. I wasn't sure what to do but I couldn't do it in my pyjamas, I closed the door in Diego's face as I rushed around the room throwing on any clothes that I could find, I quickly brushed my teeth quickly and threw my hair up in a ponytail as I opened the door again to see Diego leaning against the wall with his arms crossed waiting for me.
He nodded at me once before we were both running down the stairs, in the mad rush of getting ready I thought it was best to start where I had last seen him, I quickly told Diego who nodded I watched fascinated as his eyes glazed over slightly, I had seen this done before it was mind linking, when you were officially welcomed into a pack or born into on you could do this after getting your wolf. I had never been able to do this and I hated not being able to mind link Ryker right now.
I ran through the forest, desperate to get to where we had our picnic set up. I didn't slow down or look behind me to see if Diego was following me, I didn't matter, the only thing that did right now was getting to Ryker.
My feet pounded on the uneven surface of the forest floor, fresh dew drops still lay in the grass as my feet slid across the grass and moss. My heart thumped away in my chest, banging on my chest painfully as it tried to escape, I tried my best to keep my breaths even as the panic I felt started to rear its ugly head.
The frost smelt crisps and I couldn't catch a scent of Ryker on the fresh morning breeze, this only increased my panic as I made it to the picnic site. What I saw before me caused me to stop in my tracks, the picnic was in disarray.
The food items were discarded everywhere, the blanket we sat on was torn to shreds and the glasses we were drinking were shattered and scattered across the ground. I fell to my knees as the stench of blood hit my nose and the world started to spin. He couldn't be gone!
I felt like my whole world was falling apart, there was no sign or Ryker and it was all my fault that he had been taken. If I had just stayed here with him and not run off then maybe he would still be here and we wouldn't be in this situation right now. I felt my eyes burn as they brimmed with tears that slowly fell down my face.
I looked up as Diego stood next to me. He placed a hand on my shoulder as his face showed disbelief at what he was looking at.
I picked myself up off of my knees and stood on shaky legs as Diego steadied me by giving me his hand to give myself some more balance. I nodded at him in thanks and walked forward to inspect the mess around me. Diego had brought some warriors and they were trying to pick up a scent and figure out what had happened here.
I looked at the scene and tried to piece it together, there was clearly a struggle that had happened and I prayed that the blood that covered the green moss wasn't Rykers. There was a strange smell in the air but I had never come across it before and it was strongest on the torn pieces of the blanket.
I turned to see Diego talking to one of the men and called him over and showed him what I had found. His gaze hardened and grew dark. I watched him as he spoke to one of the men away from me, he looked angry. I was curious to know what he had found.
He came back over with a grave look on his face as I stared at me, his eyes roamed my face as he finally sighed and looked down.
"We have some scouts looking across the border and they picked up this scent. The smell is wolfsbane and it seems like whoever has taken him has poisoned him, this has masked his scent and will have made him weak. All we know for sure is not on our territory anymore. He's gone."
I felt my world crumple as a fierce scream ripped out of my throat and tears cascaded a storm down my face. I felt my heart being ripped out and my soul crushed as my world went black as an enormous wave of pain ploughed through me rendering me unconscious as I fell back onto the soft moss on the ground.