Zeus and the twins had to file a complete report with the Canadian Prime Minister’s Cabinet on Grace and her new abilities. They left out any mention of the Scythians. They reported that the genetic genius had made new breakthroughs in dormant DNA sequencing and she was now able to splice animal DNA with her human and shifter forms. Every Warlock on the planet was looking for her and her four lieutenants but none had found her yet.
Gabriel, Breena and Apollo joined Yellow-mane in Seattle and flew to Belize on a small chartered jet. Rayna was now considered a minor elder, but she wasn’t ready to be involved in the conclave, so she volunteered to remain at the village. Scythians preferred to travel together, but apart from humans whenever possible. Their vast holdings of precious jewels, gold and silver, allowed them the luxury to do so when needed. They lived simple, frugal lives most of the time, but could afford the life of royalty when it was called for.
“Will there be any trouble like we had with the North American elders?” Gabriel asked Yellow-mane.
“I doubt it, first of all, none of them wants to challenge you for fear of unleashing the dragon again. Secondly, Leonidas has friends among many different clans, especially throughout Asia. They are the largest and the most powerful of the clans and they will support him and his son without question. The other clans know this and therefore I expect all to be peaceful.
By now, they all know you are indeed the son of a Scythian and the grandson of Grandfather. He was well liked by all the elders who knew him. The fact that you are indeed a Scythian elder, with the ‘gift’ energy passed down from Grandfather is no longer in question. The only questions may come from those that have heard of you defeating an army of more than a thousand shifters,” Yellow-mane answered.
“I had lots of help in defeating Grace’s shifters, which is something we should consider. Trusted humans and Scythians working together, it could be an unbeatable combination. Especially when used to combat mutual threats such as the White Alpha and rogue shifters in general. If we learned nothing else from that night, it should be that,” Gabriel proposed.
“I doubt you’ll convince the council Gabriel. The Scythian lack of trust where humans are concerned is well deserved and many millenniums in the making. Humans we can trust are few and far between and therefore the council has decreed that none should be trusted,” Yellow-mane countered.
“But the council is talking about ‘normal’ humans. The humans we are referring to are the warlocks and the Angels. They are humans, but they have been willing to die to keep the secret of the shifters and would do the same for the Scythians,” Breena added.
“Possibly, but I still think it will be a hard sell,” Yellow-mane said.
The rest of the flight was spent with small talk. Azura was insisting on a sunrise wedding, similar the Breena’s sunset ceremony. Yellow-mane was getting tips from Gabriel on what to say. He was expected to write his own vows to speak in front of the village during the ceremony and he was quite stressed about it. Breena couldn’t help but laugh at the thought of the mighty Yellow-mane, her adopted great-uncle, cowering over the thought of speaking about his love for Azura in front of his villagers.
The ceremony and the infusion of new clan members had resulted in several new marriages in Gabriel’s clan and they had already been approached by two other elders who wished to consider an exchange of villagers as well. Things in the American and Canadian clans were looking up.
Word of the rescue of the captured Scythians by the Angel Corps, led by the shifted Zeus had spread like a wildfire among the other clans on the continent. Gabriel was hoping it would help when he brought up the subject of using warlocks or the Angel Corps to help in dealing with Scythian problems from the human and shifter communities.
Gabriel and Breena both had plans of becoming members of the Angel Corps, once they returned from this trip. They explained it to Yellow-mane, but he was apprehensive about anything that might lead to the governments of the world discovering the secret of the Scythians. He could trust individuals like Zeus, but not large entities like a government. The recent infiltration by the previous Grace into the American and Canadian Warlock Councils reinforced his opinion on the matter. Even Gabriel had to concede that point.
After landing at Goldson International Airport in Belize City, the group spent the afternoon enjoying a good meal and some casual shopping among the many shops near the city center. By four P.M. they were back at the airport and boarding a black, unmarked military style helicopter. It would have them at the secret entrance to the Cebada Cave System within the hour.
There were several public entrances to the cave system, which stretched out for more than twenty miles. However, the Scythians had their own, very private entrance which was well guarded and well off the beaten path. Only the local clan knew the way into the cave and into the massive inner cave chamber that would be used for the elder’s conclave.
No one spoke during the flight, not even the pilots. The three Scythians and the wolf were dropped off in a small jungle clearing far from any roads or buildings of any kind. The helicopter pilots reminded them they would return in the morning and then they left. Once the helicopter was out of sight, two Central American Scythians walked out from the jungle and met the four of them.
One of the two local Scythians was an elder. He held his hand out toward the forehead of Yellow-mane, but he did not touch him. As his hand got close, red sparks began jumping back and forth between his hand and the elder’s forehead. Satisfied, he performed the same check on Gabriel and then Breena. Once he had confirmed that all three of them contained the ‘gift’ energy of the Scythian clans he looked at Apollo and shook his head back and forth.
Before Gabriel could explain that Apollo also had the gift energy and the standing of an elder, Apollo took things into his own paws. In a single leap, he landed on the local elder and pinned him to the ground. As soon as Apollo landed on him, the elder was in the form of a giant jaguar, covered in beautiful dark brown spots on a golden coat.
As he tried to recover from being pinned to the ground, Apollo reached down and placed the large cat’s neck in his outstretched jaws. He never clamped down or tried to kill or hurt the elder, instead, Apollo gripped the back of the cat’s neck with his massive fangs and gently picked it up off the ground. The move effectively paralyzed the jaguar. As he was hanging from Apollo’s jaws, there were a mass of red and blue sparks dancing all along the jaguar’s neck and forehead.
After a few seconds, Apollo lowered the massive cat back down to the ground. As soon as the wolf released his grip, the jaguar was gone and the elder was back again. As he stood there rubbing the back of his neck, he apologized to the wolf for the misunderstanding. Gabriel and Breena were just glad Apollo hadn’t seriously hurt the elder, but Yellow-mane simply laughed about the entire scene.
Afterwards, they were led silently into a hidden entrance and then deep underground, more than a half-mile into the cave system. Along the way, there were LED torches every one-hundred-feet or so, lighting the path. Finally, they came to a very narrow section of the path that looked to be twenty-feet in length. It was so narrow, Gabriel and Yellow-mane had to turn sideways and shuffle along to keep moving forward.
At the end of the narrow section was a natural doorway just big enough for each of the men to fit through. Inside the doorway was one of the most massive caverns Gabriel had ever heard of. The entire chamber was more than a quarter mile long with a small river running through the back section of it.
Except for the area near the river, the rest of the chamber was completely dry. The floor of the cave was cleared of all stalagmites, but it was easy to see where they had once rested. The ceiling however, was littered with massive stalactites. All of them hanging down from the twenty-foot tall ceiling to about eight feet from the cave floor. It gave the entire chamber an almost cathedral type of feel, one that was very much gothic in style.
Throughout the floor of the cavern there were many hundreds of large pillows or folded blankets for the many elders to sit on. As soon as Yellow-mane walked in there was a murmur that ran through the collected elders. As Gabriel and Apollo stepped into the chamber, there was absolute silence as all eyes stared at the one who had been the dragon.
After several long, quiet minutes, a tiny man approached the group. Gabriel was stunned as the little man could have been a relative of Oz’s as the two so closely resembled one another.
“I am Sattoo and I am from Cambodia,” the tiny elder introduced himself.
“I am Gabriel, and this is Breena, my wife. We are elders from Vancouver, Canada. This is my brother, Apollo, he is also a village elder,” Gabriel explained.
Even though he was talking to Sattoo, he was aware that all ears in the room were suddenly focused in on his conversation.
“I had heard the tale of Grandfather breaking the gift into three parts. If there was ever an elder with the brains, heart and strength to bend the power of the gift to his will, Grandfather was it. I knew him well as we met several times when he was younger and not yet an elder,” Sattoo explained.
Breena lowered her voice and asked the elder, “Why is everyone listening to our every word?”
Sattoo laughed a deep and hearty laugh.
“It is simple, some are still afraid of what Gabriel might become, others seek to hear his words to see if he has the judgement needed to be an effective elder,” Sattoo answered. “Is it true that you are an air elemental?”
Breena instantly became the black mist which was her elemental form and after floating high up into the stalactites, she gently returned to the ground and became a human once more.
“We should talk some time, I knew of a young child that was already exhibiting those same abilities even as a toddler. She was traveling around the world with her mother and father when I met them looking at the temple complex of Angkor Wat,” Sattoo said.
Breena was visibly shaken. Could it be? Did this elder know something about her mother and father? Was it really her he was remembering? She didn’t remember this temple he spoke of or even of traveling around the world. Her oldest memory was of being released from a hospital in Vancouver as an early teen and being taken to the village by a social worker. Somehow, she knew that Breena needed to be with Grandfather and that’s where she placed her. Later, Grandfather formally adopted her for the official record. He had ‘adopted her’ in his heart the day he met her.
Gabriel could tell that Breena was shaken, he wanted to hold her, but he didn’t want her to look weak in front of the other elders. Yellow-mane had warned them that many of the elders would put on macho shows of strength, each one wanting to be seen as the most powerful. Even before they had entered the cavern there had been some of that going on as several of the elders changed to their animal forms to show off their size and strength. There was even a mastodon among the assembled elders!
However, they no longer wanted to continue such displays. They all knew Yellow-mane was a saber-toothed lion and capable of killing any of them. His size and strength and fighting ability were legendary. It was widely believed only Grandfather’s massive white bear could have stood his ground against the prehistoric lion that was Yellow-mane.
Sattoo leaned in and confided in both Breena and Gabriel, “I know Leonidas well and for the record he would make short work of any of these elders, including Yellow-mane. His Gryphon is the most powerful, efficient killer I’ve ever seen. It’s so powerful, I don’t think he ever uses his elemental form at all.”
This made Gabriel smile.
“I don’t remember being at your temple Sattoo, but I’ve been told I’m the only air elemental known, so it must have been me,” Breena whispered.
“Perhaps you would like to hear more about the girl at the temple? If you could come visit when this is all over, away from prying ears so to speak,” Sattoo answered.
“Yes, yes please!” Breena responded.
Gabriel was aware of the large number of elders slowly moving in closer and closer. They might just be interested in the conversation, but they were making him very uncomfortable and he was going to do something about it.
Stepping up onto one of the flat platforms where a stalagmite had been removed from the cavern floor he spoke loud and clear for all to hear.
“I am Gabriel, elder to the Vancouver, Canada clan and heir of Grandfather. This is Breena my wife and elder and Apollo, my adopted brother and elder as well. You have no need to fear me, I will not assume the form of the dragon ever again. Don’t ask how I know, just accept it. We are here to give you news about the threat to all of our clans and what we must do about it,” Gabriel started.
“Thank you Gabriel, the conclave will begin within the hour. In the meantime, mingle and get to know the other elders, some you will never meet again,” Yellow-mane spoke loud and clear.
Afterwards, he bent down and whispered in Gabriel’s ear, “One thing at a time Gabriel. We must follow the agenda, or the head of this little conclave will look weak.”
Then he walked away to see old friends.
“Who is the ‘head’ of this conclave?” Gabriel asked Sattoo.
With a laugh, Sattoo answered, “Why Yellow-mane of course.”
Gabriel and Breena were slightly miffed but they too had to laugh at the fact they didn’t know just how important Yellow-mane was to the proceedings.
“What is your elemental form Gabriel?” Sattoo asked.
When Gabriel hesitated because he wasn’t sure of the etiquette for such questions among the Scythians, Breena answered for him.
“He’s a fire-being,” she said.
“Oh, that takes an incredible amount of strength, your gift energy must be very strong,” Sattoo responded.
“Gabriel, would you mind if I tested your energy?” Sattoo asked.
Gabriel looked at Breena and she nodded her head up and down.
Gabriel agreed and before he knew it, the tiny man attempted to grab both of his arms with his hands. Before he could actually touch him though, he was thrown more than thirty feet backward into the air. While in the air, Sattoo transformed into a giant baboon and managed to grab onto the nearest stalactite before lowering himself to the ground and changing back into a man. There was an audible gasp among the many elders. They had all seen what had happened to Sattoo and they knew what it meant.
With a bow, Sattoo turned and walked in the opposite direction from Gabriel.
Gabriel didn’t know what to say or do. He hadn’t meant to knock the little man so far, it just happened.
“It wasn’t your fault, he wanted to see just how strong your energy was,” came a voice from behind them.
As they turned, they found themselves looking at an elderly female.
“My name is Chacca and Sattoo must be a good friend to do that for you,” she explained.
“What do you mean?” Gabriel asked.
“No matter what he said about Yellow-mane, that little man is the deadliest fighter in this room. He is a master in over sixty different martial arts and in his giant baboon form he can still use them all. His speed, strength and agility make him almost impossible to hurt. Gabriel, your father sparred with him for more than an hour and never laid a hand… or talon, on him the entire time.
No, he was trying to show everyone in this cave just how powerful you are Gabriel. He was keeping you from a needless fight as someone was likely to try to challenge you. None of them could have thrown Sattoo even ten feet with their gift energy alone, so they now understand what they are dealing with. It’s my guess that your skills as a warlock are just as impressive,” Chacca said.
“How do you know so much about everyone?” Breena asked.
“Simple, as a female elder I am greatly outmatched by sheer physical size by the male elders, but I know how to use information as both a reward and a weapon. I can tell you the weakness of everyone in this cave, besides, it helps that I’m the elder for a clan just outside Washington D.C.
We run a small, very exclusive bed and breakfast for the American elite and I use the information I have gained there as well. I heard that Zeus had taken on an apprentice and I made it my business to find out why. I never dreamed you’d end up being one of us,” Chacca explained.
“You sound like you would be a good ally,” Breena said.
Before Chacca could answer, there was a thunderous howl that caused the walls of the cave to vibrate with its power. Apollo had his fangs barred and the hair along his back was standing straight up. Gabriel now knew why he had been feeling on edge. It wasn’t because of the collection of elders, they posed no threat to him, instead it was because the White Alpha had been nearby. Had she followed them here?
Around the room elders were changing into their animal forms. A few remained in human form and stood looking around trying to determine where the disembodied howl was coming from. Yellow-mane, in lion form, was suddenly by Breena’s side. Only Gabriel seemed to know where the howl was coming from.
Without explaining, he walked toward the narrow entrance they had just entered through. Apollo moved with him, always by the young elder’s side. When they were less than twenty-feet from the opening the howling stopped, only to be replaced by a woman’s voice.
“Stay where you are! I intend to kill all of you, but not before I let you in on a little secret. You see, once you are gone I will round up your Scythian brothers and sisters and I will tear their souls from them. Each one of them will add to my power until I am utterly invincible. Nothing on this planet will be able to hurt me,” Grace announced.
As soon as the speech ended there was a tremendous explosion knocking most of the elders off their feet. A cloud of dust billowed into the cave from the entrance. Apollo sprinted for the doorway only to find it completely blocked. As Gabriel arrived next to the wolf he heard the verdict.
“Completely blocked,” Gabriel heard in his head.
As they looked at the collapsed doorway, a black mist settled over it. Breena was going to try to work her way through the obstruction. After several pensive moments she returned.
“It is completely closed off. It’s sealed airtight, even I couldn’t get through,” Breena explained.
By now most of the elders had gathered around near the entrance. Yellow-mane held up both arms to calm the gathering crowd and to silence them.
“Breena, is there any room at all? Can we dig our way out?” Yellow-mane asked.
“Not a chance, it’s solid rock, not dirt. I couldn’t go more than five feet and I tried every crevasse no matter how small,” Breena answered.
“It was the Canadians, they allowed someone to follow them here!” came a voice from the crowd.
Instantly, Yellow-mane was in his lion form and roaring at the top of his lungs. That shut the murmuring crowd down. He resumed human form.
“Some of you may not trust Gabriel or Breena, but I was traveling with them and we were not followed! Besides, it took a lot of explosives to bring down those walls. Too much to have been planted in the last fifteen minutes. No, this has been days in the planning and preparing. Now who do you want to blame?” Yellow-mane asked the crowd.
“Yellow-mane is right, this was planned and prepared for long before tonight. Whoever did this is a shifter, but they knew we were meeting here. I don’t think anyone in this cave would have given that information away and still entered here tonight. We would be better served to figure out a way to be free rather than seeking unwarranted blame,” Sattoo added loudly.
Having made his statement, he motioned for Yellow-mane and the others to come to him. As Gabriel, Breena and Apollo made there way beside Yellow-mane, the remaining elders all crowded around the collapsed doorway, each one searching for a way out. Each one just as disappointed as the last and resigned to the fact that this would be there tomb.
“Perhaps the water elementals could use the river to try to escape?” Breena said.
“Only as a last resort. They can’t hold their water forms indefinitely and the river may not surface for many miles. In fact, it may not surface at all. It might just be emptying into a giant underground reservoir in which case it would be their tomb instead of this one,” Sattoo answered.
The elders were all looking to Yellow-mane and Sattoo to find a way out for them, unfortunately, there just wasn’t one. They were all going to die in this cavern. In fact, it wouldn’t be long now since the only opening for air had been cut-off, they would all suffocate within a few hours.
Only Gabriel know what to do, but Breena wasn’t going to like it.
“Yellow-mane, can you and Sattoo get all the elders back by or possibly even in the river? I need them to conserve their breathing as well. I have a plan, but it will take all the oxygen in the room to do it,” Gabriel said.
“Gabriel no!” Breena started.
“Breena, you know we are going to die if we do nothing. At least this way we have a chance. Deep down you know this is all we have, so don’t argue. Just kiss me and move back to the river with the others,” Gabriel said.
“Gabriel, that limestone will require more than two thousand degrees to melt. How long can you generate that can kind of heat before you burn up?” Yellow-mane asked.
Gabriel just shrugged. Since returning from being the dragon, he knew he was much stronger than before. Now, he was going to get a chance to see just how strong he was.
With a whimper, Breena let Yellow-mane pull her back toward the river. She was trying not to cry because she knew what Gabriel was going to do, but she also knew it would probably kill him, even if he succeeded. Apollo went with Breena, but only after Gabriel insisted he look after her for him.
“I do not know how much you understand about being a fire-being,” Sattoo began, “your fire feeds off your emotions. The stronger the emotions, the hotter the flame.”
“Yes, that was the first thing I learned on my first attempt to control the fire within me,” Gabriel answered the Asian elder.
Sattoo and Yellow-mane began moving all the elders back, those that resisted were forcibly moved by one or both of them. After less than a minute, only Gabriel remained in front of the doorway. As the other elders looked on Gabriel took a deep breath and transformed into his fire-being form.
It took all his concentration to remember why he was a fire-being and remaining focused on getting hotter and hotter. He remembered the lesson Breena had taught him and he thought about losing his grandmother, his mother and even Grandfather to the White Alpha. Still, it wasn’t enough. He was hot enough to burn most things, but not quite hot enough to pass through the limestone. Then he realized what Grandfather had tried to teach him, the strongest emotion wasn’t hate or fear, it was love!
He began concentrating on how he felt about his brother Apollo, Breena, and even Zeus and Oz. Slowly he began to grow hotter and hotter. He was now over two thousand degrees and slowly getting hotter by the second. The solid wall of stone in front of him began to liquify. Gabriel began moving forward, inch by inch. He would have to clear at least twenty feet of solid rock, perhaps even more. He knew he was in danger of burning up and at this temperature, even Breena couldn’t put him out.
Still, ever since his return, Gabriel had felt calmer, more in control and yet more powerful than ever before. He wasn’t planning on a suicide mission, he really felt like he could do this. As he moved forward slowly, he was burning a seven-foot tall oval through solid rock. He wasn’t sure what Grace had used to collapse the passageway, but whatever it was, it was powerful. She had managed to cause one of the sides of the narrow passage to slam up against the other, completely shutting off any possible access to the outside world.
After almost twenty feet, even Gabriel’s great reserves were being taxed. He had hoped to be through the rock by this point, but the immense explosion had done damage to much more than just the narrow portion. As he thought about Breena and Apollo dying in the cave and the White Alpha winning, he concentrated even harder on how much he loved them. This gave him a boost of energy and he managed another fifteen feet.
Slowly, Gabriel could feel his fire getting weaker, it was getting harder to move forward. He was no longer moving through solid rock, but instead it was tightly packed rubble. After another foot, Gabriel was spent. Something was keeping him from burning up completely, what is was, even Gabriel had no clue. Slowly, his fire went out and Gabriel slumped to the floor of the passage.
He had burned a hole through more than thirty-five feet of rock, but it wasn’t enough. In the process, he had used up most of the available oxygen left in the cavern. It wouldn’t take long now, they would all suffocate in a matter of minutes. As he lay there gasping for air, he felt someone pick him up. He looked up to see Sattoo in his giant baboon form. As the elder pulled Gabriel back from the end of the tunnel, there was a screech coming from within the very walls themselves.
Just as Gabriel was pulled away from the wall of tightly packed rubble, it exploded inward and showered the spot where he had just been. There, standing in the new opening was the massive Gryphon, Leonidas.
“It’s good to see you, old friend,” Sattoo said.
As soon as Leonidas saw the collapsed Gabriel in Sattoo’s arms, he was suddenly back n human form and rushing to hold his son. By the time he got there, Breena, Apollo and Yellow-mane were there as well. Without a word, Leonidas took Gabriel and walked back through the new opening and into a smaller cavern about half the size of the main chamber.
As the Canadian elders, Sattoo and Yellow-mane moved to one side, the other elders filed out of the cavern one by one. Each of them stopped for a second to nod or to wave toward the now collapsed Gabriel. Each one was paying their respects, for each one knew Gabriel had risked his own life to save theirs.
“I can’t leave you alone for a minute,” Leonidas said to Gabriel.
Breena just wrapped her arms around his neck and vowed to never let him go.
“I don’t understand, why didn’t you burn up? You were so hot Gabriel you singed he entire cavern. If we hadn’t been in the river, we would have burned up too and we were hundreds of feet from you,” Yellow-mane explained.
Gabriel couldn’t answer, he was too tired to speak. It wouldn’t have done him any good, he didn’t really know the answer to the question, but he had an idea and a sneaking suspicion about why. If he was right, he felt better about the future. It suddenly seemed like he might never become the animal he had dreamed of and therefore he wouldn’t break Breena’s heart.
Gabriel was just starting to feel normal when it hit him.
“Father, you have to leave us immediately,” Gabriel said.
“Why, what’s wrong?” Leonidas asked.
“It’s the White Alpha. I need you fly to Belize city and get our helicopter back here tonight! I know why we never sensed her, she wasn’t here,” Gabriel tried to explain.
“Gabriel, we all heard her,” Yellow-mane countered.
“You heard what she wanted you to hear. I’ve heard her howl in person and I knew something was wrong when I heard it tonight. She wasn’t here, it was a recording, or a radio transmitter, but it wasn’t her in person. Of that I’m sure. Somehow, she found out about the meeting and came here early and set all of this up. The problem is, that means she’s headed for the only other Scythian village she knows of and that’s ours. We have to warn them!” Gabriel answered.
Leonidas understood and took off running, he was still quite a way from the cave complex’s hidden entrance and then he would have to fly to Belize City. It was risky to fly during the day, but it couldn’t be helped. He would fly as high and as fast as he could.
Gabriel stood, and the group followed Leonidas toward the entrance. They found a small pool along the way and stopped long enough for Gabriel to drink a gallon of water. As he did so, Apollo scouted on ahead. The LED lights were still lit so getting lost wasn’t a problem, they simply followed the well-lit path. Soon they emerged into the jungle and found themselves surrounded by the other elders.
“Who was it that tried to kill us? Was it the one you were going to warn us about?” asked Chacca.
“Yes, her name is Grace Stevens, but we know her as the White Alpha. She’s the premiere shifter on planet Earth. She’s smarter, faster, stronger and more invincible than any creature you’ve ever seen or heard about. She’s the one that had Grandfather killed by an army of shifters and mercenaries.
She’s the one that kidnapped the Scythians missing from Eastern Canada and the U.S. Grace is a genetic genius and she can use the DNA of Scythians to make another virus like the shifter virus or even an army of shifter-Scythian hybrids,” Gabriel explained.
“She knows our secret and must be stopped,” said another of the elders.
There was another murmur as they quickly conferred with each other.
“We would like to propose a very rare warrant,” Chacca said.
“A warrant?” Breena asked.
“Yes, it rarely been done, but in the interest of all Scythian life, we feel that one is necessary in this case. We propose to ask all Scythians to kill the White Alpha on sight,” Chacca answered.
“NO!” Gabriel’s voice rang out across the small valley. “If any other Scythians try to kill her she will destroy you and then find your clan and kidnap them for her evil experiments. Leave her to the Angel Corps, they, along with the warlocks, are equipped to deal with her.”
“Then let us help you find her,” Sattoo pleaded.
“No need, I already know where she’s going. Back to Vancouver, Canada. It’s the place her last version died at the hands of Zeus, my other grandfather.
Once again there was a murmur as the information was passed to every elder. Gabriel and his friends settled down under a massive tree to wait for the helicopter.
Four hours later they were all aboard their chartered jet and headed back to Vancouver. All were quiet as each one was thinking of the village and how they would fair at the hands of the White Alpha. It was going to be a long nine hours. There was no way to know how far ahead of them the White Alpha was. She could have been attacking the village as soon as they left it. All they could do now was hope that Rayna could handle whatever happened until they could get back there.
Gabriel was amazed at how much he cared for his villagers. Just a few weeks ago, they all had wanted to abandon him. They didn’t trust him or particularly care for him in any way. And now he was rushing back to them. Willing to put his life on the line for every one of them. He knew Breena felt the same way. It hurt his heart to think that those very same villagers might be harmed by the White Alpha. He had to make sure that didn’t happen!