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Chapter 2

STELLA

I wake up with a groan as I hear a bang on the door. I was surprised when I heard my dad's voice yell through from the other side.

“Stella!! Stella!! Time to get up...”

I sit up and look around at all the packing I did last night. I hadn't realised that I had gotten so much done before sleep became too inviting. I get up, head to the bathroom, and have a quick shower. I forgot to take my clothes in with me, so not really thinking, I walked out of the bathroom with my towel wrapped around me, heading back to my room when I bumped into a guy in the hallway.

“Sorry...”

I mumble, startled as I feel two hands grab my upper arms, stopping me from falling.

“Good morning Stella!”

I look up and see that it is Benjamin.

“Good morning. What are you doing here?”

“We are here to help you two move..”

That’s when I look around and see that the house is full of men. I quickly put my hands on my towel, making sure it was fully around me and nothing was showing. I pull back out of his hands, embarrassed, and move quickly into my room, shutting the door behind me. I quickly get dressed. As I finish pulling my shirt over my head, there is a knock on the door.

“Stella, are you dressed? Can we start taking your stuff out?”

I walk over to the door and open it to find Benjamin standing and leaning his shoulder on the doorframe,

“Sure.”

I smile and say as I step back, go over to my bed and sit down as five other men make their way into my room and within about five minutes, the room was bare. I look around the room and ask,

“Benjamin? Dad said that I would be working. What type of work will I be doing when we get there?”

“It is mainly a cleaning job for the big boss.”

I looked at him, a little worried, as he continued,

“Don’t worry Stella! Axel is a simple man. As long as you stay out of his way, don’t look him in the eyes and if he tells you to do something, you do it straight away, you will not have a problem with him. Anyway, one of the females will give you a rundown of what you will need to do once you get there.”

I am still a little worried about this big boss Axel and what did he mean by females? I guess I will find out on Sunday evening. I go to say something else when we hear my dad call,

“Stella, time to go!”

I get up and grab my backpack, look around the room once more, when I see my phone still sitting on my bedside table. I walk over and pick it up before turning around and bumping into Benjamin again, who had quietly moved up behind me.

Again, he stops me from falling over, wrapping his arms around me. He then pulls back a little, moving his hand to the piece of my fringe that likes to escape my ponytail, running it back and forth through his fingers as he whispers.

“The boss is really going to love you!!”

A shiver of something runs through me at his words. I didn’t get a chance to say anything in return or question what he meant as he stepped back, turned around, and walked out of my room. I shake my head, thinking that was really weird and a little creepy. I look at my phone and see that it is just after 7 am and if I don’t move, I will have Dad yelling at me to hurry up.

I walk out my bedroom door and close it behind me, making my way out the front and into our car where I end up waiting for Dad. It isn’t long before Dad gets into our car and we are on our way. I sigh as I pull out my phone and send a text to both Macy and Whytt.

‘Sorry I didn’t get to say goodbye, but Dad got a last-minute promotion and we have to be there for him to start work on Monday’

I know I won't get a reply from Macy until late afternoon, as the weekend is her relaxing days when she spends her time in bed sleeping unless we have worked out to go to the mall together. Whytt, on the other hand, is probably awake but just lazing in bed. I smile as I get almost an instant reply from Whytt.

‘What do you mean, say goodbye?’

Tears sting and fill my eyes at the thought of not seeing him or Macy nearly every day hits me. I take a deep breath and then at least explain a little.

‘My dad’s new promotion is in the town. That is a day and a half’s drive and he must start on Monday’

‘Well, that sucks! What am I meant to do now?’

I smile ‘Probably whatever you would normally do or what you used to do before you decided that I was going to be your friend. Just promise me that you will not go to that party tonight with Savannah. You know she only wants one thing and then will make fun of you with her friends at school on Monday.’

‘Well, that’s not good. I was really bored on the weekends until I met you and no promises’

‘Well, you still have Macy to keep you company... Whytt please don’t fall for Savannah's lies. I will come visit. That is if you want me to come back and visit?’

‘Of course, I would want you to visit. Why didn’t you text last night? I would have come round and helped?’

‘I was too upset with Dad.’

My phone beeps at me just after I press the send button and I frown...That’s so not fair. I hate the country roads... No cell service. I just hope there is cell service in the town we will be going to. I then turn to Dad, thinking that maybe I can get a little more information on where we are going.

“Dad, what is the name of this town we are going to?”

“It is called White Wolves!”

“Are you sure? I have never heard of it.”

“Yep, it’s where the big boss of the company is based.”

"Dad, have you met this big boss?"

I look back out the window and sigh as he seems to ignore my last question and just concentrates on the road in front of him. I don't remember my eyes closing but must have dozed off as the next thing I know is that Dad was gently shaking my shoulder and saying,

“Sweetheart, we are stopping for lunch. Did you want something?”

I stretch and look around.

“Yeah dad, that sounds good, just a ham salad sandwich will do.”

He nods and gets out of the car. I tried to stretch again, but it was too confined in the car, so I opened my door and got out. I close the door, stretch, and look around a bit more. There isn’t much around, so I go for a short walk across the road and into a field. I close my eyes and take a few deep breaths. I can’t believe how fresh everything is out here.

I open my eyes and scan the horizon when I see a bush not too far away with some beautiful flowers on it. I walk over to the bush and pick a couple of the flowers, bringing them to my nose. I breathe in deep again, smiling at the wonderful and enticing fragrance. I then lift my eyes to the horizon again and freeze as I see a silhouette of a wolf off in the distance. It doesn’t seem to be doing anything but watching.

I know not to run or it will chase me, so I keep the flowers to my nose playing that I hadn’t seen it and slowly take a few steps backwards. I look down momentarily to see where I am putting my feet so I don’t fall over, but when I look back up, the silhouette is gone.

I don't see it running towards me, which is a good thing, so I guess it went the other way. I then turn and walk, heading back to the car where I see Dad just coming out of the gas station with lunch. We sit on the bonnet of the car and eat as we get back into the car and then head off on our way. I check my phone, and sigh, as we still have no service.

Once we are back on the road, I continue to watch out the window as I am sure that there is a wolf either following us or travelling alongside us. Our next stop was at a motel diner, where we ate some dinner and then rented a room for the night. As we entered the room, I could have sworn I heard a wolf howl and saw a glimpse of that silhouette again.

It is a little creepy, but I shrug it off, head into the room, and throw myself onto one of the beds. I look at my phone and sigh as I see that I have no bars which means that I couldn’t even say goodnight to my friends and Macy would have only received the one message from me early this morning and probably now thinks that I am ignoring her.

I was also hoping to talk to Whytt and make sure he didn’t go to that party with Savannah, but then I don’t know when I will be back and he may be able to change her ways...

Hah, I don’t think so. I really hope there is cell service in this town we are going to. Not talking to my friends is worse than any punishment my dad has ever given me.

My dad's phone alarm goes off at 6 am the next morning and I wake up with a start and then groan.

"Dad, it is Sunday. Must we really be up at this hour?"

He yawns "Yes sweetheart, we still have a long drive to the town and then we need to meet up with Benjamin so that he can show us which house is ours and then give you a tour and a brief rundown on what you have to do to start work tomorrow morning."

I stretch and groan again at his mention of me having to work before school tomorrow, however; I get out of bed and beat Dad to the bathroom, making him groan and I laugh. I have a quick shower and get dressed. I open the door just as my dad is about to knock. I laugh.

"I don't always take a long time in the bathroom."

"Ha, you would be in the bathroom all day if you could.."

He laughs back at me as he enters the bathroom. I shake my head at him and then call out,

"I am going to start putting our bags back in the car. Okay, Dad?"

"Thank you, Stella, I won't be long."

I repack our bags I am surprised when I see some of Dads paperwork sitting in the bottom I pull them out and skim some of the pages, it seems to be bank statements but they cant be his as there is nothing in them. I snap my head to the bathroom door quickly put them back in his bag and then grab Dad's keys. I will talk to him later to find out what is going on. I open the door and head over to the car, opening the back door and pushing our bags inside. Once they are in, I close the door and look up and around. I smiled as there seemed to be a few more trees around now, however; I had to do a double take in one spot among the trees, thinking that I had seen that wolf from yesterday.

I jump as I feel a hand on my shoulder. I turn and see my dad making me sigh in relief.

"Dad, can I ask you something?"

"You just did!"

"Ha ha very funny... But seriously, are there wolves in this area?"

"I think so. Benjamin did mention something about a small wolf pack living in the woods near the town, but they mainly keep to themselves and stay in the woods. So I guess as long as you leave them alone, they should and will leave you alone."

"Don't worry Dad, I don't plan on disturbing them."

He smiles and nods, as takes the key back to the office and then we get into the car and continue on to the small town of White Wolves.

He drove straight through and managed to get to the White Wolves town just in time for lunch. Just before we entered the town, Dad filled me in on what he knew of my working hours. Unfortunately, he didn't know what I would actually be doing.

Driving through the town was actually quite interesting, as there was more here than I thought there would be. Dad pulls the car to a stop in front of a small café right in the middle of town,

"Come, sweetheart, this is where we are meeting Benjamin, and we can have some lunch while we wait for him."

I look at my phone and notice that I have some bars. I laugh a little as I have to turn the volume off because of the number of messages that are coming through from Macy and Whytt. I scroll through the messages and laugh a little as Macy gets more and more frustrated that I am not answering her. I send them a quick message,

'Sorry guys, I had no service once we hit the country. However, I made it in one piece, and I will call you both once I have settled.'

I then sent an extra one to Whytt,

'Whytt. Please tell me that you didn't go to that party with Savannah and that you didn't wake up to be either lying next to her this morning or to a note left on the pillow from her.'

Still worried that he did let Savannah take advantage of him, I sighed and put my phone in my pocket before joining Dad at the table out the front of the café. He had already been inside and ordered our lunch.



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