Ophelia Nyx Johnson
During my daily training, my manager, Zander, rushes to my side with a big grin. I stop and turn around to check what made him grin like a fool.
“What is it? Why do you look like you won the lottery?”
“Because I might have done that,” he exclaims as he holds up a golden envelope.
I grasp it from his hand to check it out. It has the initial K written in calligraphy. When I open it, I see it is an invitation to a masquerade ball organized by King Industries, a sportswear manufacturer.
“I’m not attending that ball,” I discard the invitation to the ground and return to my training. Zander doesn’t back down as he grabs the punching bag and prevents it from moving.
“I’m talking to you, so stop acting like a fucking three-year-old! You are going, and there is nothing more to it!”
As if I would do that, and he knows it. I’m not a social butterfly, and I distaste social events. I never do something that I hate. That’s always been the case, and I don’t intend to change it now for anyone, not even Zander.
“I’m not going, and that’s the end of this discussion,” I state fiercely.
Zander grabs his head tightly, pulling at his hair.
“I have never asked you to do something for me. Why don’t you consider that? These people have been investing in your talent since the beginning of your career, and they want to meet the person behind that mask.”
“No, you know I would never do that. When I decided to take up your offer and pursue a career as a boxer, I vowed not to reveal my identity. You were very well aware of that, and now you are asking me to do that?”
I don’t care if he’s staring at the ground or not. He can’t act like he’s feeling guilty now when he went against my wishes. For me to decide not to attend these events, there has to be a good reason. I’m not going to reveal it, only to reason with him. He has to trust me if we want this relationship to last.
“You don’t have to say who you are. You’ll go for a few hours, and then I’ll come and pick you up. Don’t talk to anyone if you don’t want to. Do it this time, and I’ll never ask for more.” He promises.
Zander has always kept his promises, but he is a human, and humans tend to break their promises. How will I know he won’t do that again? If word gets out that I attended an event by a sponsor, the rest of the sponsors will push for my attendance. How will I get out of that?
“What will happen if the other sponsors ask for my attendance too? How will you turn them down when they’re paying me to fight? Will you act like this is a one-time thing again?”
He shakes his head and says, “I’ll deal with that. You don’t have to worry about that. I promise.”
My mind is telling me no, but my heart is saying otherwise. Fancy gowns, expensive food, and stuck-up people are not my cup of tea. I prefer watching Netflix while eating pizza. But, indeed, Zander has never asked me to do anything I wasn’t comfortable with and didn’t want to do. Maybe it is time to exit my bubble and do him a favor.
“I’ll do it, but just this once. After that, you’re on your own.”
He pulls me in for a bear hug and kisses my cheek.
“Thank you so much, Ophy! You won’t regret this!”
Angelina Iris Hooks
I glance at the clock ticking, waiting for my dad to return from his trip. He’s always traveling somewhere, and I barely have time to spend with him.
“Daddy!” I cry as I hug him, causing him to throw his suitcases to catch me.
“I missed you! Why did you extend your trip?”
He laughs at my whining and kisses my forehead.
“All that matters is that I’ll be yours for three months.” He anticipates my reaction, expecting me to burst into cheers, but I hug him tighter.
Steven Hook is my dad’s name, and he’s one of the most respected businessmen in the sportswear industry. In his younger days, my dad was a professional boxer. He met my mother when her friends dragged her to one of his matches. According to my father, it was love at first sight.
Two years later, my mother gave birth to me but passed away during childbirth. Unfortunately, I didn’t lose only my mother but my father too. He suddenly decided a change his career, and he founded his company. He had nannies taking care of me while he was traveling around for business. He was more absent than present and always went back on his words. Let’s see how long this will last.
I cook dinner for us while my dad gets settled for the night, but I’m startled by my father placing a white envelope on the counter.
“What is that?” I ask as I wipe my hands to open the envelope.
“It’s a gift to ask for forgiveness. I’m sorry to have missed your first presentation.” He urges me to open it.
I pull out an invitation to the King Industry’s Masquerade Ball. What’s the purpose of this gift? According to what I know, this Ball is desirable to those wishing to strike a deal with the CEO or who would like to pursue the CEO romantically. I’m interested in neither of these two.
“Thank you, daddy!” I exclaim, masking my tone with excitement.
“I heard Hook was attending the event.” He casually states as he sips a glass of water.
At the mention of Hook, my ears perk up.
“What? Are you serious?”
“Why else would I ask you to accompany me to a business event? Social events cause you anxiety, but it was an opportunity to meet the person you adore.”
I hug him tightly, whispering thank you in his ear.
I can’t wait to meet the person behind the mask. I’ve been curious about Hook’s identity since I watched one of his boxing matches. I’m not a fan of violent games, but something was pulling me to him, and I can’t pinpoint what it was. Maybe it was because he loved what he was doing and didn’t care about fame. He fights while wearing a mask and doesn’t do interviews.
I’m interested to know the person behind the mask. Who knows? Maybe I’ll meet him there.
Dion Leander King
I push the button in the intercom as I flip through the documents.
“Is everything ready for the event?” I ask, not lifting my head.
“Everything is going according to plan. There are minor details left, but everything will be ready before night comes.”
Simply nodding, I excuse him.
‘Kings & Queens Masquerade Ball’ is a Ball my company has been hosting for the past seven years. It is my last resort to find my mate before I choose someone else as my mate and Queen.
I have traveled to every continent and visited every pack, trying to find my mate, but to no avail. My best friend and Beta, Carlos, found the most logical explanation. I haven’t met my mate yet because she is not a werewolf like me. This event’s sole purpose is to maybe come across my human mate.
Werewolf or not, I long to have someone to love and return to at the end of the day. Settling with someone other than my mate is like a sin to me. The possibility of taking someone else’s mate from them is like poison, but I’m afraid I won’t have any choice. The council has been pushing me for a while to choose a bride. They believe that a wolf without its mate will go crazy sooner rather than later. Therefore, they gave me a deadline to find my mate or choose someone else.
My goal with this ball is for unmated wolfs to interact with humans and possibly find mates. I’ve set up lottery tickets so people without a higher status can attend. Among those are unmated Alphas, Betas, Gammas, head warriors, and prominent personalities in the business industry.
If this ball does help me find my mate this year, it will be up for discussion about whether it will continue to exist. I would hate to stop something that could potentially help lots of werewolves, but it will be a joint decision with my mate. But that is if I find her.
It won’t be long until we know.
Eros Galen Black
“Give my credit card to Sophia. The one with the no limit.” I order my Beta, Steven.
“Why are you still going out with that girl? I’ve warned you she’s bad news. You need to be living under a rock not to know she’s sleeping around.” He heatedly states.
Steven has been my Beta and my best friend since our childhood years. That’s why he gets away with protesting and raising his voice at me like he’s going to do right now. He’s saying it because he means well, but I don’t care. Sophia is a usual lay for whenever I feel like it. We have a deal, and it’s a no-strings-attached one. This agreement is over when one of us finds their mate.
“I don’t care if she’s sleeping around. I want her to pass the time. If I find my mate, I’ll cut things off with her.”
“I don’t think your mate will be fine with sleeping around. Especially a pack member at that.” He smartly states. He’s staring me in the eyes, challenging me.
“Leave my office this instant, and don’t ever speak to me like that. You may be my best friend, but I’m still your Alpha. Learn to respect me.” My eyes are flashing as I get angrier.
In any other case, my wolf, Atlas, would be enraged but not know. He’s against my actions, just like Steven.
He raises his arms as if he’s surrendering and steps back.
“It’s your life, I guess. Don’t be disappointed when you find your mate at the ball and she rejects you for being with another girl.” He exits the office, slamming the door forcefully.
His words weigh deep in my mind, and I know he’s right. I was like that in the beginning, until the years passed and there was no sign of my mate. I began getting desperate until I snapped. What if I never find her? Will I be alone and abstain from any relationship for all my life?
Besides, I doubt I’ll find her at the ball. The Alpha King has been hosting this ball to find his mate. It’s been seven years already, and nothing. Why will it change for me and not him?