She didn’t bother closing the door behind her as she burst out of the pack hospital the same way that she had snuck into it along with all of the other wolves from the Apo to Chaos pack, pushing her legs as fast as they could possibly carry her. Pushing herself to go harder and faster, she powered her way over to the packhouse.
The second she caught sight of Marcellus and his warriors, she didn’t stop, not even when they ran past her in their wolf forms to where she had just come from; the pack hospital.
Forcing her way into the packhouse, Thea all but ran into Anastasia’s awaiting arms, panting heavily and completely out of breath.
“I did everything we planned.” The words rushed out of her mouth as she hugged her friend tightly, finally feeling a little bit safe after everything that she had gone through the past couple of weeks. “I led them into them past the borders and then into the pack hospital. When they all followed the sound of the baby crying, I turned around and ran as fast as I could.”
“It’s all going to be okay.” Anastasia sighed and rubbed a reassuring hand down her back in hopes of calming down Thea’s erratically beating heart which she could feel from just the embrace.
“They killed someone.” She squeezed her eyes shut, unable to hold back the tears that were able to break through the dams. “He didn’t change over like the others, like he was supposed to. I tried to stop them but they killed him. They snapped his neck and just left him there.” Her voice broke as she continued speaking, her body now shaking violently as she sobbed. “I just left him there.”
“It’s not your fault.” The Luna wolf reassured her, tightening her arms around her as she tried to calm down her friend. “I don’t know why he didn’t change over like we told him to but this isn’t on you, Thea. This isn’t your fault and you need to stop thinking like that.”
She pursed her lips and nodded, trying to swallow the sobs that threatened to escape as her heart continued to beat dangerously fast in her chest. As much as she hurt and pained for the innocent wolf that had been killed and she had been powerless to do anything to help him or stop it, now simply wasn’t the time to worry over that as their plan was only halfway through.
After it had all been executed and they had guaranteed the win, she would search out his family and pay her condolences. That was the least she could do after having put him in danger like that, even if he was collateral but for now, she needed to get a hold of herself.
Pulling away from the hug, Thea dropped herself on the sofa closest to her and rubbed her thumbs under her eyes, wiping away both her shed and unshed tears.
“Thea!” Marcellus growled as he entered the packhouse followed behind by a few of his wolves, one of whom he recognised to be Beta Dalton.
The Alpha’s eyes were wide and his breathing haggard as he searched for her in the living room. Before she could finish wiping away her tears and question him as to what was wrong, he beat her to it.
“How many of you were there?” Marcellus asked in a strong, determined voice, all but demanding an answer like the true Alpha wolf that he was.
“14 including me.” She answered instantly, not needing even a moment to think about it as every little detail about the plan, she was sure to memorise, not sure when it would come in handy. Perfect for a moment like this.
“So, 13 wolves?”
She nodded her head frantically, unable to find her voice in this moment of desperation.
“Fuck!” Marcellus swore loudly as he swivelled around and threw a punch at the wall, breaking right through it but not even flinching at the pain. “Fuck this! Fuck him! Fuck all of this!” With each swear, he reared his fisted hand back and proceeded to slam it into the wall again, still having not disclosed to them what exactly had gone wrong to upset him so much.
“What’s wrong?” Anastasia called out to her mate in question, walking over to him with the hesitation regarding what had happened to anger him so severely, but hoping to calm him down nonetheless. “Tell me what’s wrong, Marcellus. We won’t be able to come up with a solution if you don’t.”
“12.” Dalton stepped forward to answer, sensing that his Alpha needed a moment to regroup and think of what to do next.
“What?” Thea couldn’t help but question even though subconsciously, her mind understood what he was trying to get at.
“We only managed to catch 12 wolves. They’re all in the dungeons now.”
“Alpha Orpheus.” Thea stated simply as she felt herself fall back against the sofa, her mind in a complete daze as the severity of the situation dawned on her.
“Yes.” The Beta wolf confirmed before turning to his Alpha, though Anastasia was quick to cut him off.
“What happened? How did Orpheus managed to get away?” The questions spilled out of her mouth before she could stop them, wracking her mind in attempt to figure out where they had gone wrong despite having carefully planned out and mulled over every small, fine detail of the plan.
“He burst through the window the moment we got to the room.” Marcellus growled as he raised his hands to pull on the ends of his hair in frustration. “Without him, we’ve just got 12 wolves in our dungeons that will argue that we locked them up simply for trespassing. As they’re not rogues, the council is just going to demand that we let them go.”
“We need to find Orpheus.” Thea rose to her feet and began pacing back and forth with her hands clasped behind her back, needing to think of a solution that would get them out of this mess.
“Where do you think he could have gone?” One of the warriors asked. “Back to the Apo to Chaos pack?”
“He’s not a coward.” Thea was the first one to shake her head. “And I doubt he would leave while I’m still here. Not after I betrayed him like this.” She couldn’t help but gulp on the last word, very aware that if Orpheus would get his hands on her now, she wouldn’t live to see the next moment, let alone her son one last time.
“Why can’t we sense him out?”
“Why can’t we sense you?”
“We used a mask scenting spray.” She sighed, regretting not asking more questions about that earlier when she had the chance.
The discussion continued as Thea continued pacing, trying to think of something, anything that would get them out of this whole mess because right now, Orpheus had the element of surprise even though it was him against all of the warriors from the Lupus Griseo pack – anyone who wasn’t fighting, had been evacuated to the nearest pack for the worst case scenario.
Unfortunately, they hadn’t anticipated a scenario akin to this one.
“We need to go down to the dungeons. One of the wolves has to know where he went.” Thea groaned aloud as she grabbed Anastasia’s hand, dragging her out of the packhouse as she wasn’t sure where the dungeon was located, having only ever seen and visited the dungeons before at the Apo to Chaos pack. But back then, those dungeons had been her home for an entire week.
“Please tell me you know where the dungeons are.” Thea all but begged as she walked in a random direction.
“I do and we’re going the wrong way.” There was no sense of humour or amusement in her voice as she swivelled them both around to walk in the opposite direction. “What’s the game plan?”
“I don’t really have a game plan.” Thea shrugged, her mind genuinely at a loss of what to do. “I’m just hoping that Clayton will know where Orpheus could have possibly gone but I doubt that he’ll be willing to give up his Alpha just because we have him locked away behind bars.”
“Clayton?” Anastasia questioned as she continued guiding them forward.
“The Beta.” Marcellus sounded aloud from behind the both of them and together, the trio jogged past the guard and down the stairs into the dungeon.
“This way.” He murmured as he brushed past them and led them to the very end of the hallway where Beta Clayton had been secured in a cell.
“This him?” Anastasia questioned as they came to a stop in front of the last cell at the end of the hallway, all of them turned to face the wolf that greeted them with a menacing growl, chained to the wall with silver so he couldn’t move too far away from the wall.
“I was right about you all along!” Clayton spat, glaring murderously at Thea while ignoring the other two.
“I guess it is.” Anastasia pursed her lips but no one was able to pay her any attention as Clayton demanded all the attention that they could muster.
“Look.” Thea groaned as she shook her head and crossed her arms over her chest. “We can get into all of this later if you want to but right now, we need you tell us where Orpheus is.”
“And why would I do that?” Clayton scoffed and made a show of rolling his eyes. “Even if I did know where he is, it’s not like I’m going to tell any of you.”
“So, you don’t know where he is?” Anastasia was quick to jump in and ask, all of them desperately needing an answer now as they were already running on time that they didn’t have.
“I’m not speaking to you, Luna.” The Beta wolf sneered. “I’m speaking to the other Luna.”
“Don’t speak to my mate like that!” Marcellus growled and took a menacing step toward the cell, his hands tightly fisted by his side.
“And what are you going to do from out there?” He sneered back which was very quickly cut off by the sound of Thea groaning loudly, nearing the end of her patience.
“We can argue as much as we want later but right now,” she turned her head to ferociously glare at Clayton. “You need to tell me where Orpheus is.”
“I don’t know where he is!”
“I don’t believe you!” She countered back in a loud scream, pushing past the way her throat ached but right now, she couldn’t be the least bit concerned if her voice cracked and she were to lose it. All that mattered was that they found Orpheus and restrained him before he set out on a revenge mission to destroy them all.
After the way she had betrayed him, Thea had no doubt on her mind that he would come for her first; thirsty for the taste of her blood.
“I don’t care if you don’t believe me or not but I really don’t know where he is but even if I did, you’re the last person that I would tell.” Clayton growled and rolled his eyes. “Just so you’re aware, Orpheus is going to kill you for this.”
“He’s not going to kill her. She’s his mate.” Anastasia huffed but Thea didn’t care comment as she didn’t doubt for even a second that Clayton was speaking nothing but the truth.
As great as Orpheus had been with her and Malik over the past couple of weeks, she more than anyone was acquainted with his murderous side – as well as his rape-y side – and knew for a fact that if he were to get his hands on her right about now, she wouldn’t last long enough to see till the end of the minute.
Whether he came to regret that or not later was a whole other matter and even if he did, it would be too late as she would already be dead by then.
Despite everything, she knew that right now all that mattered was that they found him and since Clayton claimed to have no idea about his whereabouts right now, she had a new idea in mind.
While she was certain that it would have a one-hundred percent success rate, she wasn’t sure that the outcome would favour her.
“Thea?” Anastasia called out to her in question. “I don’t like the look on your face.”
“Me neither.” Marcellus hummed quietly.
“I’m sure you don’t care what about my opinion right now but I don’t like the look on your face right now either.” Clayton piped up from where he was restrained in the cell but none of them paid him any attention.
“I’ll tell you, but not here.” Thea stated as she sent Clayton a pointed look before turning around and heading out of the dungeon.
While this plan was risky and more than anything, she was putting her life in danger, it appeared that they didn’t have any other options to consider.
Like everything else for the past couple of weeks, this was all for the greater good.
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